Bob Hawke was President of the Australian Council of Trade Unions between 1969 and 1980. Hawke enjoyed close relations with many union and Labor Party leaders in Israel which he established during and after his first visit to Israel in 1971.

Following his return from Israel, Bob Hawke delivered the inaugural Sam Cohen Memorial Lecture which can be found here.

Bob Hawke served as National President of the Australian Labor Party (ALP) between 1973 and 1978.

Bob Hawke transitioned to politics in 1980 when he was elected as a Member of the Parliament of Australia at the 1980 election. He remained a Member of Parliament until 1991.

Bob Hawke was Leader of the Australian Labor Party and Prime Minister of Australia between 1983 and 1991. Bob Hawke is the most electorally successful ALP leader having won four elections, 1983, 1984, 1987 and 1990.

Throughout his public life, Bob Hawke was a passionate advocate for Israel and campaigned for the right of Jews to be released from the Soviet Union.

In recognition of his support for the Jewish community and the State of Israel, the Bob Hawke Forrest in Israel was dedicated by the Jewish National Fund of Australia in 1995.

Hawke would have quit over Israel

GOUGH Whitlam, the prime minister who shines brightest in Labor’s pantheon, had an “immoral, unethical and ungrateful attitude” towards Israel, his nemesis Bob Hawke allegedly said. That revelation about Australia’s 1972-75 PM and Hawke, whose 1983-91 prime ministership was one of the most supportive of Israel, comes from a welter of diplomatic cables posted online…

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Israeli Labor Prime Minister Golda Meir with Bob Hawke, President, Australian Council of Trade Unions, Israel, 1971
Photo: KKL-JNF Photo Archive
Photo: KKL-JNF Photo Archive