Friendship and kindness. Tragedy and injustice.
Roweville's Italian prisoners of war.
by Darren Arnott

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March 1946. The war was over. Italian prisoners of war who had been captured several years earlier in northern Africa were interned in camps around Australia and waiting to be returned home. One Saturday evening, the commandant of the Rowville internment camp, Captain Waterston, shot and killed a prisoner, Rodolfo Bartoli, who he claims was attempting to escape. Rodolfo, a young prisoner from Florence, had met a local girl whom he was hoping to marry one day.

Only days before the shooting, a government inquiry into the alleged mistreatment of prisoners at the Rowville camp had been announced. Was it really an escape attempt? Was Captain Waterston justified in his actions? Using the original court transcripts, official documents and personal accounts, "No Regard for the Truth" follows the police investigation, Military Court of Inquiry, Coroners Inquest, Government Inquiry and the subsequent court-martial hearings. Disturbing revelations about the camp administration begin to emerge drunkenness, prisoner assaults, theft of property, the reckless firing of weapons and a desire to brush away the facts.

Soft cover, 198 pages


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This page first produced 8 October 2019

This page last updated 21 January 2020