A place for reflection and introspection, communication and thoughtful conversation.
Tuesday, 4 August 2009
“How many does it take to metamorphose wickedness into righteousness? One man must not kill. If he does, it is murder... But a state or nation may kill as many as they please, and it is not murder. It is just, necessary, commendable, and right. Only get people enough to agree to it, and the butchery of myriads of human beings is perfectly innocent. But how many does it take?” – Adin Ballou
We have been shocked today by the news that several arrests have been made in several locations around Melbourne in connection with a terrorist plot where suicide bombers would have made strikes against Australian military targets. This is a chilling story and timely reminder of how our world and our society has changed over the last few decades.
Only a few years ago, if someone had said that we would become a target of terrorists in Australia, he would have been ridiculed. We live in a country where political stability and democratic values are uppermost, where people from all over the world have been welcomed and their culture has been respected. A place where they are able to practice their different religions without fear of persecution and where they have found refuge. The state provides support in terms of language services, social worker access, family support.
Now we have Australian citizens (who have taken an oath of allegiance to this country and the values it upholds), strike at the very foundations of its political system. I do not care where someone comes from, what colour their skin is, what language they speak or what their politics are. If they have chosen to live in this country, if they have come here and have taken an oath of allegiance in a citizenship ceremony, then they must obey the laws and treat the state with the same respect it treats them. Talk about biting the hand that feeds you…
The disgusting thing about this case is the lawyer defending these scum had the indecency to say that his clients’ rights should be respected! As if they were going to respect the rights of the people they were planning to cold-bloodedly murder! The truth of the matter is that their rights will be respected because this is what this country stands for. We shall give them a fair trial, we shall provide legal aid to them and even if they are found guilty, we shall put them in a gaol that is sanitary, clean, provides good food and humane treatment. In other places they would have been shot by a firing squad.
The other frightening thing that came out of the preliminary court hearing is that these men (against whom substantial incriminating evidence has been amassed) are making themselves martyrs. They are hiding like the cowards they are behind the shield of religion and in their bloody mindlessness they are citing an adjuration of a “fatwa” – as if this makes the mass murder of innocent people right. There is no major religion that says in its holy books “thou shalt kill”. All such inunctions are the concoctions of power hungry politicians in cahoots with corrupt and radical clerics maddened by fundamentalist catechism.
Any civilised, rational, human being cannot tolerate or condone violence, much less terrorist acts where innocents victims are annihilated in a sacrifice that is meant to act as a lever in achieving some crazy aim of world domination. Extreme right resembles extreme left; fascism is indistinguishable from communism. A thin line divides patriotism and nationalism, while religious fundamentalism is identical with all brands of god believed in. Some of the worse crimes in history have been committed in the name of religion and Christians are as much to blame as Moslems, Hindus as much Jews.
Stop terrorism, stop racism, stop religionism, stop this madness that is consuming our world with hate, terror, insanity of the highest order!
I have been blogging daily on this platform for several years now. It is surprising that I have persisted as the world is changing and "microblogging" is now the norm. I blog to amuse myself, make comment on current affairs, externalise some of my creativity, keep notes on things that interest me, learn something new and to surprise myself with things that I discover about this wonderful, and sometimes crazy, world we live in.
I sometimes get the impression that I am on a soapbox delivering a monologue, so your comments are welcome.