The defamation trial mesmerising Australia comes down to simply this: is Ben Roberts-Smith a assassin or an harmless man?

Ben Roberts-Smith arrives on the Federal Court docket on Friday (Picture: AAP/Bianca De Marchi)

It is the tip of the primary week of the most important defamation trial in Australia and the central situation couldn’t be clearer. Did Ben Roberts-Smith, this nation’s most awarded soldier of the fashionable period, commit six murders and an act of home violence? Might this veteran of the Afghanistan struggle have gone past the principles of battle to unlawfully kill six males and in addition assault a lady with whom he was having an extramarital affair?

If he wins the case, Roberts-Smith will return to the life he had earlier than the newspaper tales he claims defamed him have been revealed: a struggle hero with a Victoria Cross who represented his nation at tons of of public engagements having fun with a profitable profession as a public speaker.

If he loses, he’ll go down in historical past as a monster who, within the warmth of battle, besmirched the sacred popularity of the Australian Defence Pressure (ADF).

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