Australian Security Intelligence Organisation

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Group.png Australian Security Intelligence Organisation   WebsiteRdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
ASIO building.jpg
Formation16 March 1949
HeadquartersCanberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia
LeaderASIO/Director-General of Security
Sponsor ofInstitute for Regional Security
Tied to Anglo-American intelligence

The Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) is an Australian intelligence agency. From its foundation in 1949, ASIO has been largely unaccountable and frequently used as a political tool especially by the Liberal-Country Party coalition that rules the country most of the time.[1]


1973 Chilean coup d'état

Full article: 1973 Chilean coup d'état

The Australian Security Intelligence Organisation was involved in the 1973 Chilean coup d'état, as officially admitted in 2021.[2]


In 2014, writing about the 1975 Australian coup d'état, John Pilger noted that on "The day after his election, [Australian prime minister Gough Whitlam] ordered that his staff should not be “vetted or harassed” by the Australian security organisation, ASIO – then, as now, tied to Anglo-American intelligence".[3]

"Foreign interference"

Full article: “Chinese interference in Australian politics”

In November 2019, The Age reported that "Late on Sunday Australian Security Intelligence Organisation director-general of security Mike Burgess issued a statement entitled "Foreign interference". He said ASIO "takes seriously" the allegations reported by The Age, The Sydney Morning Herald and 60 Minutes at the weekend about Mr Zhao as well as claims by young Chinese defector Wang Liqiang, who said he had worked as a spy in Hong Kong and Taiwan."[4]

Creating "terrorists"

With start in 2021, ASIO started an entrapment operation to entrap a 13-year-old autistic boy with a fixation on the Islamic State, after his parents sought help from the authorities. The boy, given the pseudonym "Thomas Carrick" by a court, spent three months in custody before he was granted bail in October 2022.[5]

Thomas was investigated and charged with two terror offences by the Joint Counter Terrorism Team (JCTT), which comprises Australian federal police (AFP), Victoria police and ASIO members. An online covert operative was tasked with communicating to Thomas using two personae: a 24-year-old Muslim man from NSW, and a more extreme person located overseas. The operative chatted with Thomas on 55 of the next 71 days, including during breaks at school and late at night. The first persona introduced Thomas to the second, more extreme, persona, who encouraged him to make a bomb or kill an AFP member.[5]

On 8 August 2021, Thomas sent a photo to the operative which showed him wearing his school uniform, a hoodie and a face mask and holding a knife with "ISIS" written on it in marker, and asked questions like whether he could join the kids' section of Islamic State. The boy also asked his mum to buy bomb-making ingredients such as sulphur and acetone.[5]

A 2023 children court ruling found that an undercover officer had "fed his fixation" and "doomed" the rehabilitation efforts. The court also found that JCTT deliberately delayed charging Thomas with offences until after he turned 14, as it made it harder for him to use the defence of doli incapax, which refers to the concept that a child is not criminally responsible for their actions. The court found that "The rehabilitation of TC was doomed once the [operator] connected online…befriended TC and fed his fixation, providing him with a new terminology, new boundaries and an outlet for him to express, what was in part, his fantasy world."[5]


An event carried out

Chile/1973 coup d'étatChileA CIA military intelligence operation that overthrew of the democratically elected Salvador Allende.


Related Quotations

H. V. Evatt“We must be aware of setting up a security organization which has political views, and which regards the left-wing man who goes too far to the left, as being a criminal. We must prevent any attempt to set up an espionage system for spying on our own people. The security service was never intended to be a secret police organization. Now it wants to run the police of Canberra and everything else, and it is only kept from doing so by public opinion.”H. V. Evatt19 October 1955
Paul KeatingThe Albanese Government’s complicity in joining with Britain and the United States in a tripartite build of a nuclear submarine for Australia under the AUKUS arrangements represents the worst international decision by an Australian Labor government since...World War One...And that approach was to have the United States supply nuclear submarines for deep and joint operations against China...

And how did this come to be? The answer lies in Anthony Albanese’s reliance on two seriously unwise ministers. Penny Wong and Richard Marles....Labor’s valiant three fell immediately into line – they would join the neo-cons in the Office of National Intelligence, ASPI, the country’s principal US apologist, the security agencies and the hapless Defence department....

Indeed, two of our major dailies, the Sydney Morning Herald and the Age, have for five years now, argued the notion of war against China. Or readiness for war.”
Paul Keating15 March 2023
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