Subsequent to my previous posting on Helpem Fren I got a heads up from Slats about Mary-Louise’s background. A bit of Googling tells me she is married to Joses Tuhanuku who was a minister in the national government of the Solomon Islands in the mid 1990s and for many years has been a trade union leader in his country. He is now studying at the ANU at the National Centre for Development Studies. In no way am I critical of this and I’m not suggesting anyone was trying to keep the matter hidden. I just thinks it’s important to know where people are coming from when they comment on an issue. It is only fair we should listen to the locals as they describe the background to the current problem. Not only fair, but I might add educational – for me at least. Read it all but note the speach by Mary-Louise’s husband Joses. It appears to be a time honoured case of the white man coming and all things changing. Well in light of the fact that white men of the time did come and that things did change and are changing now then we need to address todays problems and not dwell on their causes. In another mention, Joses comments on the role Australia should take. I note he doesn’t suggest we send over troops but I get the feeling he will find that acceptable. The Role of Australia 1. Australia can make a difference in the South Pacific Region. 2. Australia should take a more bold and decisive approach in the current situation in Solomon Islands. Whether Australia likes it or not, it is impossible for Australia to shy away from problems or leadership in the South Pacific. 3. Australia needs to have good people on the ground, to guarantee sound and accurate understanding of the situation back in Canberra. 4. Australia, and others who are already participating in the IPMT, should jointly send a police contingent under the auspices of the Commonwealth to assist the RSIP in implementing the TPA. 5. The current crises in Solomon Islands and Bougainville are feeding off each other, and therefore finding lasting solutions to both, can only be achieved if they are dealt with simultaneously. The full text is here Links to date are mostly from 2001. As I said background. Joses is the leader of the Solomon Islands Labour Party SILP and in the current Parliament (elections held 2001) the SILP has 1 seat. Yes. ONE seat. Why then is Joses’s hit rate on Google so heavy. I don’t know but he appears everywhere in seminars in Australia and in DFAT, ANU and ABC sites. Mind you the same sources says – note: in general, Solomon Islands politics is characterized by fluid coalitions. Whatever, he is the darling of the ABC and that in itself is cause for some concern. Curiouser and curiouser, to quote Alice. I look foward to developments as Aussie infantry and constabulary impact on beautiful downtown Honiara and surrounds.
Australian foreign policy long held back by politically correct Prime Ministers, Politicians, Academics and inward looking press matures as we head off to the Solomons to help stabalize the trouble pacific nation. The operation is called ‘Helpem Fren’, pidgeon English for ‘Helping Friend’. I know most of you could have worked that out – but some… The force consisting of; 1500 Australian Defence Force (ADF) personnel, 105 Kiwis, 123 members from a Fijian Rifle Company (don’t mess with these guys either, Harold) with contributions from Tonga, Samoa and PNG, 120 personnel from a Kiwi rifle company in reserve. Come on cousins – lift your game!, 155 Australian Federal Police, 25 Kiwi police, and 90 Australian Protective Service personnel (to secure the bad guys when they’re caught.) I hope there are a lot of Provos (Military Police) going as if this lot ever got leave together………. The rebels have been told not to resist and thats good advice. Its one thing to terrorise locals but another matter to terrorise a rifle company from the Royal Australian Regiment – our Infantry force. I know, I’ve commanded such a company and at times they terrorised me. Yes. It is a small force but that’s what the commander of 275 Regiment said of D Company, 6RAR when he figured he had them surrounded at Long Tan in August 1966. A couple of thousand Vietcong couldn’t overcome D Company’s 118 men and he lost several hundred troops finding out. Communist Divisions and Regiments have been stopped in their tracks by Aussie rifleman so the Solomon Islands’ most prominent militant, Harold Keke, obviously a keen student of Australia’s military history, has stated he is willing to disarm. If he doesn’t I’m sure he can be accomodated. The local hoodlums are becoming uneasy Spy planes, known as UAV’s (unmanned aerial vehicles) will be used to track the rebel forces and gangs of thugs which have terrorised the Pacific island nation. Meanwhile Mary-Louise O’Callaghan reporting from Honiara, tries to put a bad spin on Prime Minister Howards actions. Mary-Louise has a go at Howard; Queried about his idea of “pooled regional governance”, Howard yesterday demonstrated just how steep his personal learning curve might be. “I can’t for the life of me see how that’s got anything to do with colonialism. I think it’s got a lot to do with common sense,” he said. Who would ever suggest that “pooled regionnal governance” and “colonialism” were one and the same. Sending troops, police and billions of dollars of aid at the invitation of the Pacific Forum could hadly be interpreted as “colonialism”. I think Howard’s learning curve is a lot flatter than Mary-Loiuse’s. Read her article in the box here. It is generally positive but we need to exorcise the word colonialism from our media before fools start quoting it back. The article about Howard’s new Pacific solution is here I receive daily Defence Media emails and will keep you posted on our adventures on the North-East Frontier.
Tanya Streeter created history yesterday when she shattered one of the world’s most extreme sporting records. Holding her breath for 3 minutes and 38 seconds, the 30-year-old Streeter descended 122 metres into the ocean off the British West Indies and resurfaced under her own power, breaking the previous freediving records for men as well as women. “There was a time when even submarines couldn’t go as deep as I went,” she said. Her husband Paul freedived 20 metres to accompany her on her final stretch. The wuss.
Good news to start the day. US forces in Iraq have killed Hussein’s two ‘animal’ sons in a battle in the northern city of Mosul. “We are certain that Uday and Qusay were killed today,” Lieutenant-General Ricardo Sanchez said at a news conference in Baghdad today. “The bodies were in such a condition where you could identify them.” The deaths of the sons could have a major impact on the Iraqi resistance, which has been mounting about a dozen attacks a day against US occupation troops. I trust the left will applaud with the rest of humanity and thank the US for their continued fight for the rights of the Iraqi’s.
Another three hours trying to get the bloody archives to post. I even tried a new template thinking I may have lost the code – to no avail.
This article in the London Times raises several questions and answers none. The left wing antics of the BBC and some ineptidude of Government bodies has left a family bereaved by the apparent suicide of Dr David Kelly. Dr Kelly, an expert on Iraq and its WMD programmes tabled a report to Defence that the BBC claimed was then tarted up . The BBC used an interview with Dr Kelly as a base for their claim that the final report was embellished to lend support to the case for the War. In an inquiry, Dr Kelly stated that he didn’t recognise his words in the beat up leaving all to ponder the veracity of Gilligan, the senior BBC journalist and the Governing board of the BBC as they refused to name their source. Apparently principles of journalism are selectively applied. It is worth emphasising that Dr Kelly had no doubt that Saddam Hussein had the intent and expertise to develop Weapons of Mass Destruction. His concern was whether the nature of this programme was correctly represented and his personal mission was to return to Iraq to find evidence of those weapons I can understand why the BBC procrastinated in identifying their source as he still believed their actually was WMDs and this definitely dosen’t fit the BBCs ideology. Update: BBC staff are panicking but more than half of the press try to pass the ball to Blair. Well they would, wouldn’t they? Update #2: I will keep updateing the Kelly case so we can watch the Media and left-wing commentators continue to try and sheet the blame to Blair, rather than with the BBC where, considering all reported evidence to date, the blame should reside. This article from FrontPage, a US news service, reflects on the facts. The final chapter in this story hasn’t been written yet so I’ll wait for a final call.
The Australian continues on its crusade to beatify Hicks and bring him home for trial so left-wing lawyers can claim abused childhood or some similar abrogating point of law and gain him his freedom. His mother (poor woman) claims; “He should be allowed to be brought home for trial,” she said. “We don’t think David will get a fair trial over in America as Mr Bush doesn’t want him to go free.” Sounds fair enough to me that Bush doesn’t want him to go free but I’m confident he will get a fair trial. Why? Because the US are limiting his access to lawyers who will only argue whether he is guilty or not and not argue over ideologies or some how or other rationalize treason as OK in this new world of reverse standards. Forty years ago he would have been shot if found guilty – thats how serious the world considered traitors. These days, of course, even a right wing conservative old soldier like myself wouldn’t advocate the death penalty but considerable time in prison is a must. Lets revisit his crime. He was fighting for the Taliban; Australian and US soldiers soldiers were fighting against the Taliban; ipso facto, his actions were traitorous. The US captured him and hold him in prison. He should face trial by the capturing army and do some time in prison for a couple of reasons; one – to keep him off the streets were he will most probably do something stupid again, and two; as a reminder to like minded idiots that in spite of the efforts of warm and fuzzies and left-wing idiots in general – if you do the crime – you do the time. I tremble at the thought of the circus that would be visited upon us if the US allowed him home to face trial. Our laws on terrorism are only recently enshrined in law and of course any legal secretary can fight and win against retrospective application of the law. Hicks would have access to thousands of anti US/Bush/Howard legal pro bono malpracticers and pages and pages of poor fellow Hicks coverage from the press. The trial would be a circus of Ringling Brothers proportions.
The beach north of Noosa was pristine, the moon just on the wane from full and still the fish didn’t bite. Of course that’s not the issue here. My son and I lost the window of opportunity to go together so I just took off and enjoyed the solitude. You married guys know what I mean – for 24 hours I wasn’t told how to do things, or when to do them. I was amazed at my ability to drive 250Km without crashing into ‘that car on the left’, or running ‘the red light’. Over and above this I somehow picked up how to drive within the speed limit without being told what the current speed limit sign says. I must be maturing. Mind you, speeding and Series Land Rovers is not necessarily a problem. I am happy to report that even though Bundaberg Rum is now owned by a foreign conglomerate, the standards have been maintained.
Good! A serial anti-abortion protester who spent nine weeks in jail because he refused to stay away from a city abortion clinic may be headed for another stint behind bars after he has shown no sign of paying about $8,000 in fines. Again, good! Lock him up, he’s a pest. His gender precludes his trying to force his opinion on people who are faced with abortion as an answer. I try and stay away from the abortion debate but this is about serial pests inflicting opinion on others in sometimes violent ways. Most recently we had the Melbourne case of a guy murdering staff at a Melbourne clinic. We need a watch on these loonies along the lines of Paedophile programmes.
Delta Goodrem has cancer. If the article in the Courier Mail hadn’t mentioned that Delta is a singer and Neighbours star I woudn’t have known who she was and yet she gets front page treatment. This article has paragraph leaders like; Wearing blue slacks and sporting a new hairstyle and A black BMW hire car with tinted windows drove through waiting photographers to drop the singer and Neighbours star at the entry to the clinic. and thus sets the tone for children and other Neighbours fans but misses the vast majority of the paper’s readers. I do feel sorry for the girl as she suffers press coverage during what could only be a traumatic time in her life, but I also feel sorry for thousands of cancer sufferers who, while not TV stars, have worked hard, contributed to society in meaningful ways, and in some cases, significant ways, and will never get front page treatment – just 2 centimetres in the Death Notices.