Speeches | 26 September 2013

Lowy Lecture Series: 'Untaking Risks - Six Decades Reporting Asia’s Conflicts and Asia’s Rise' by Nick Warner

On 26 September 2013, the Lowy Institute for International Policy hosted Nick Warner AP PSM, Director-General of the Australian Secret Intelligence Service as the keynote speaker for the Lowy Institute's Media Award ceremony. Nick made a speech in tribute to his late father, Dennis Warner OBE CMG. The Lowy Institute intends to honour past Australian foreign correspondents such as Denis Warner at each year's Award ceremony.

Denis Warner spent almost six decades reporting the conflicts of Asia and Asia’s rise; informally as a soldier in the Middle East during World War Two, as a war correspondent during the Pacific, Korean and Vietnam Wars, and as a foreign correspondent in Iran, Afghanistan, India, Cambodia and Indonesia.

 

  • Nick Warner

On 26 September 2013, the Lowy Institute for International Policy hosted Nick Warner AP PSM, Director-General of the Australian Secret Intelligence Service as the keynote speaker for the Lowy Institute's Media Award ceremony. Nick made a speech in tribute to his late father, Dennis Warner OBE CMG. The Lowy Institute intends to honour past Australian foreign correspondents such as Denis Warner at each year's Award ceremony.

Denis Warner spent almost six decades reporting the conflicts of Asia and Asia’s rise; informally as a soldier in the Middle East during World War Two, as a war correspondent during the Pacific, Korean and Vietnam Wars, and as a foreign correspondent in Iran, Afghanistan, India, Cambodia and Indonesia.

 

  • Nick Warner
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Key Findings

  • Best known for his reporting on the Vietnam War, Denis 'exposed much about how badly the war was prosecuted … [but] saw the strategic value in it. He believed – and wrote – that the war in Vietnam bought time for the non-communist countries of South East Asia to strengthen themselves and to concentrate on reform and economic development, so that they stood firm rather than crumbling'.
  • Long-time colleague and friend Michael Richardson, described Denis as helping 'to break down the barriers that divided Australia and Asia', and as 'amongst the first Australians to understand Asia, its strategic significance and its importance to Australia'.
  • During the Korean War, 'there was only one telephone line to Tokyo on which the journalists could file their stories. So, as dad later recounted, they queued up and went to sleep on the floor, and as each correspondent finished dictating his story he'd wake the next man'.