Story: Intelligence services

Muldoon's list of 'subversives', 1981

Muldoon's list of 'subversives', 1981

In August 1981, at the height of the Springbok rugby tour protests, Prime Minister Robert Muldoon released a list of 15 'radicals' and 'subversives'. The list was part of a report provided by the Security Intelligence Service (SIS), following a request from Muldoon to investigate the anti-tour movement. The report claimed that the Wellington protest group COST (Citizens Opposed to the Springbok Tour) was 'greatly influenced' by the Workers' Communist League, a group the SIS regarded as subversive. The report also claimed that the Auckland group MOST (Mobilisation to Stop the Tour) had been infiltrated by 'radicals bent on violence'. The report was denounced by anti-tour activists and Muldoon's political opponents as inaccurate and a device to further polarise the country. Muldoon was unapologetic, stating that 'genuine' protesters were being used for 'subversive purposes' by those named in the report.

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New Zealand Herald
Reference: 26 August 1981, p. 1

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How to cite this page:

Peter Clayworth, 'Intelligence services - The Cold War, 1945 to 1984', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 10 December 2023)

Story by Peter Clayworth, published 20 Jun 2012