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Byron Shire
November 27, 2021

The illusion of terror and the racism within

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As the federal government pushes ahead with its divisive new laws to strip terror suspects of their citizenship it is perhaps worth pausing briefly to consider its objectives.

While it is ostensibly about keeping us safe, it is clearly about Abbott securing his leadership of the illiberal party by catering to the demagogues on the back bench.

This far right, anti-terror cabal is the same constituency who brought Abbott to power when he decided that climate change was ‘absolute crap’.

And of course, out there in voterland there is a solid base of rednecks still clinging to the quaint notion of a white Australia who are happy for brown people to be presented as a threat to national security and sent back to where they came from.

The upshot is that if you oppose legislation empowering the immigration minister to unilaterally revoke citizenship then you’re ‘rolling out the red carpet to terrorists’. This is plain silly. But what exactly is the threat of terrorism in Australia?

The past does not always enable us to predict the future. But it can be a useful guide.

There have been three people killed by terrorists in Australia. Ever. Two in the 1978 Hilton bombing. Man Monis killed one in Martin Place last year. By contrast, approximately one woman is killed by her partner in Australia every week. Year in, year out.

For this government, the means always justify the ends. But the end state that we are being protected from is a gross illusion. It is akin to keeping us safe from wind farms.

Dave Lisle, Mullumbimby

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  1. There has been a phrase that has crept into the Australian language “keeping us safe”.
    Safe from what?
    What nation is attacking us?
    Will Australia stop being the Nanny state as now 1 in 5 Australians are fearful of the Government creating terror in the community. Fear is increasing, so how is the Government keeping us safe when we are most unsafe and the unsafeness is increasing.

  2. Maybe David Lisle hasn’t noticed but there are Australian citizens traveling to Syria and Iraq to fight for ISIS Unless you think that these returning soldiers of ill fortune deserve to be allowed back here after being blooded on the field of savagery that ISIS has created then I guess Abbott’s idea is not simply motivated by the cynical vote getting he perceives. Has it maybe not dawned on Lisle that the reason we have had few terror attacks here is because the security agencies are doing a good job? Of course not, people like Lisle see conspiracy everywhere except where it is most obvious.

  3. Actually I would dispute the Man Monis death. That’s akin to calling every murder by a nut job Christian a crusader attack. Good article. Thank you.

  4. The government focuses on Australians going to Syria to fight with ISIS but completely ignores Israeli Australians who join the Israel Defence Force and who may commit atrocities against Palestinians. The Israeli military veterans group “Breaking the Silence” publishes enough soldier confessions of “shoot everything that moves” orders to make Australia complicit in war crimes through the enlistment of its dual nationals. Australia must ban jihadis and Israeli terrorists.


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