We have Howard's amorality and Beazley's weakness to thank for this situation. Howard encourages and Beazley is frightened to tackle the racism, bigotry, ignorance and fear of most Australians. Laurie. ------------ ----- Original Message ----- From: "Trudy Bray" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> To: "news-clip" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> Sent: Thursday, September 20, 2001 10:38 AM Subject: SMH - Prejudice, hatred, ignorance: trifecta that leaves reason last > The Sydney Morning Herald > Prejudice, hatred, ignorance: trifecta that leaves reason last > > Date: 20/09/2001 > > Never mind Bush's 'crusade'. We are already fighting our war, and it's against the helpless victims of today's Nazis, writes > Margo Kingston. > > I'd just lifted my head out of my hands after hearing the leader of the free world announce he was leading his allies into "a crusade" - the > Christian term for a holy war - when I received an email from an army bloke I'd locked horns with many years ago during the debate on > gays in the Defence Force. > > Brigadier Adrian D'hage has retired to write a novel. Winner of the Military Cross in Vietnam, he's a larger-than-life figure who ran > defence public relations before heading defence force security planning for the Olympics. He holds an honours degree in theology. > > He wrote: "WANTED - DEAD or ALIVE !?? Whilst our heartfelt sympathies are with those whose lives have been shattered by this > truly criminal act, the rhetoric from the US President gets more disturbing each day. Already, US citizens have been promised a decisive > victory - and decisive victories against unseen enemies can never be delivered. > > "The Australian Government has signed a blank cheque - without the foggiest notion of what might be planned. Whatever happens, > history will question the wisdom of that course. And whatever we do, we will have to do it without the Army engineers who are > exhausted on Nauru. > > "It is time to take a very deep breath." > > Just how blank the cheque is became clear yesterday, when John Howard announced on ABC Radio: "We leave open the option of any > kind of military involvement which we are capable of and would be appropriate. And yes, that includes troops." > > That brings the reality home, as do comments by Afghan-American writer Tamim Ansary: "Maybe the bombs would get some of those > disabled orphans. They don't move too fast, they don't even have wheelchairs. But flying over Kabul and dropping bombs wouldn't > really be a strike against the criminals who did this horrific thing. Actually, it would only be making common cause with the Taliban - by > raping once again the people they've been raping all this time. > > "What can be done, then? Let me now speak with true fear and trembling. The only way to get bin Laden is to go in there with ground > troops. > > "We're flirting with a world war between Islam and the West. And guess what: that's bin Laden's program. > > "Read his speeches and statements. It's all right there. He really believes Islam would beat the West. It might seem ridiculous, but he > figures if he can polarise the world into Islam and the West, he's got a billion soldiers. > > "If the West wreaks a holocaust in those lands, that's a billion people with nothing left to lose. That's even better from bin Laden's point > of view. He's probably wrong; in the end the West would win, whatever that would mean, but the war would last for years and millions > would die - not just theirs, but ours. > > "Who has the belly for that? Bin Laden does. Anyone else?" > > Maybe we do, maybe we don't. But our leaders had better start preparing us for it instead of filling us with indignation. > > And maybe we'd better realise that we're already fighting our own war. Our fleet is patrolling the high seas boarding and repelling leaky > boats. We have our own prisoners of war on the Manoora. We're building our own prisoner-of-war camps on Nauru and Christmas > Island. It's costing us millions a day. Wartime powers are invoked as civil liberties and the rule of law are threatened in the cause of, > according to John Howard, "our national sovereignty". > > Labor has just agreed to the first case of mandatory sentencing in Federal law. It will apply only to Indonesians - the poor sods at the end > of the people smuggling chain. They'll spend a minimum of three years in jail for a first offence. Labor has agreed to exclude courts from > any role in the fate of our prisoners. > > Most strangely, our war is against the people fleeing today's equivalent of Nazi Germany, the Taliban. As we back the US in bombing > the bejesus out of Afghanistan, as Australian citizens face execution for carrying the Bible in Afghanistan, we wage our own war against > Afghan refugees. We pretend they are really Taliban terrorists sent to infiltrate our detention camps. Our Defence Force exhausts itself > on a war against Afghan refugees before the war begins against their oppressors. > > This is bipartisan policy. There is no mainstream political debate on the merits of this farce. In the vacuum, prejudice, hatred and > ignorance flourish. There is no space for reason. > > This material is subject to copyright and any unauthorised use, copying or mirroring is prohibited. > http://www.smh.com.au/news/0109/20/text/opinion1.html > > > ************************************************************************* > This posting is provided to the individual members of this group without > permission from the copyright owner for purposes of criticism, comment, > scholarship and research under the "fair use" provisions of the Federal > copyright laws and it may not be distributed further without permission of > the copyright owner, except for "fair use." > > > > --------------------------------------------------------------------- To unsubscribe, e-mail: [EMAIL PROTECTED] --------------------------------------------------------------------- RecOzNet2 has a page @ http://www.green.net.au/recoznet2 and is archived at http://www.mail-archive.com/recoznet2%40paradigm4.com.au/ until 11 March, 2001 and Recoznettwo is archived at http://www.mail-archive.com/recoznettwo%40green.net.au/ from that date. This posting is provided to the individual members of this group without permission from the copyright owner for purposes of criticism, comment, scholarship and research under the "fair use" provisions of the Federal copyright laws and it may not be distributed further without permission of the copyright owner, except for "fair use."