Rupert Lockwood was many things in his lifetime, variously a journalist, editor, author, pamphleteer, orator, broadcaster, historian. He was also at various times controversial, vilified, and respected. From 1939 to 1969, he was one of the best known members of the Communist Party of Australia.
During the Cold War, Lockwood was a central figure in the Royal Commission on Espionage, 1954-55, the media, ASIO, and the Menzies government doing their utmost to portray him as a spy.
Cahill has spent many years putting Lockwood’s story together, and depicts a significant and courageous journalist. His account ranges from Lockwood’s early training in the rural press of Western Victoria in the 1920s, to the Melbourne Herald in the 1930s, to the labour movement press in the 1940s and onwards.
The story told by Cahill traverses the world, including the front lines of the Spanish Civil War where Lockwood was a correspondent. It is a story filled with drama, action, intrigue, spooks, ruling class perfidy, maritime history, and details never made public before.