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Construction of a logging road into the rainforest began in 1979. This resulted in an unprecedented confrontation between hundreds of "hippies", and the sawmillers who were supported by Forestry Commission staff. A large force of police was rushed to the site. The city media also hastened to cover the drama. For several days, the battle for Terania was shown in graphic detail on television in Sydney. Neville Wran was horrified by the violent scenes he saw on the screen -- protesters being dragged out of trees and arrested as the bulldozers moved in. He told the media that "the issue has got out of hand", and ordered the police and sawmillers to withdraw. Both sides licked their wounds, and demanded a quick Government decision on the logging issue.  

In the ALP, the right wing machine was pro-logging, on the simplistic grounds that the jobs of hundreds of workers would be lost if the sawmills closed. Terania was in the marginal electorate of Don Day, a right wing minister. Once of his close cronies was Lin Gordon, the minister in charge of the Forestry Commission. Landa, and the left wing ministers wanted to save the rainforest. The numbers in caucus would be crucial -- it could overrule a minister or even the full cabinet.

First, it was necessary to convince the Premier that the rainforest was important -- worth his taking on the right wing of the Party and the unions.

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