Robert Gordon Menzies
Menzies, Robert Gordon
Born Dec. 20, 1894, in Jeparit, Victoria. Australian statesman. Educated as a lawyer.
In 1934, Menzies was elected to the federal parliament; from 1934 to 1939 he served as federal prosecutor. Leader of the United Australia Party (1939-44) and of the Liberal Party (1944-66), Menzies was prime minister from April 1939 to August 1941 and from December 1949 to January 1966, while simultaneously holding several ministerial posts.
In 1951 the Menzies government attempted to outlaw the Communist Party of Australia, and in the same year, and again in 1959-61, it passed a number of laws against progressive organizations and the trade unions.
The Menzies government drew Australia into the aggressive military blocs ANZUS (1951) and SEATO (1954).