Bush?

Do you like Bush

  • Yes

    Votes: 27 48.2%
  • No

    Votes: 13 23.2%
  • I wish Al Gore were in office

    Votes: 16 28.6%

  • Total voters
    56
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Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Why is it insane? He feels they are wrong, and considering the issue in question, he probably feels they are crazy. It's his right to tell them to go to hell. And it makes no difference anyway, because the people out there protesting had no intention to vote for him anyway.
 

Phillip Tanaka

Swabbie
Banned
And hey, Saddam probably does use the protestors as a means of gaining points. All I'm saying is that we should be thankful that Bush, at least, appears to care for his people. I'm frankly surprised that he's still in power after lying (and some maintain that he did lie) about the Tampa.
 

Phillip Tanaka

Swabbie
Banned
What I meant to say was that I'm surprised John Howard is still in power after the Tampa incident. But I wouldn't be surprised if there was something between Howard and (Governer General, the guy who can sack Howard if he does something wrong like Watergate, or if the Australian people demand it) Peter Hollingworth, something along the lines of "I'll protect you from the church sex scandal if you keep quiet when I talk about children being thrown overboard."
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
You seem to be under the impression that the general public actually cares about such lies, Phillip. They don't. In the Tampa incident, Howard said exactly what most of the public wanted to hear, and did exactly what most of the public wanted to see done. He was rewarded by an immediate boost in public opinion ratings.

It is indeed unfortunate, but the simple truth is that most Australians don't mind what is done to the refugees, as long as they stay out of Australia.
 

Phillip Tanaka

Swabbie
Banned
And I'll tell you, I was one of them. Especially when it was revealed that they would pay thousands of dollars to be brought to Australia. But you know those militent groups in America who believe that the government is no longer for the people? Sometimes I think maybe that's not too far off the mark in Australia.
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Personally, I find this anti-refugee point of view to be arrogant and hypocritical (not to mention stupid - new waves of immigration are historically linked with economic growth in Australia). After all, where do you think you came from? If you think refugees should not be permitted to come to Australia without express permission of the Australian government, then you and every other non-Aboriginese inhabitant of Australia should leave immediately.
 

Phillip Tanaka

Swabbie
Banned
I'm sure there's some in the abboriginal community who would just love that to happen, but in any event, I was referring to those who, in some views, blackmail Australia into giving then what they want, after spending sometimes tens of thousands of dollars to come here, if that story is true. I'm not saying refugees should not be allowed here, but I am saying that criminals and terrorists should be barred. Those who are fleeing the American bombs in Afghanistan, certainly bring them here. But not members of the Al Qaeda who would smuggle themselves in with the genuine refugees.
 

Phillip Tanaka

Swabbie
Banned
Well, some of the refugees that come here are jumping ahead of those who are being checked to make sure that they are not terrorists or will not cause Australia problems. As much as I hate to say it, many of the problems in places like Sydney are caused by Vietnamese gangs who were former refugees. That's why they gotta be checked out. Anyway, the story goes, as I remember it, that these que jumpers would be placed in detention centres to be processed. But because these refugees dumped all their identification such as passports, it takes a lot longer for them to be processed. Now some of these que jumpers demand Visas so they can stay in Australia, and sometimes more such as guarenteed jobs, homes, cars, ect. And they sometimes go to drastic measures to try and bend the government into giving them what they want, such as the destruction of the detention centres, riots, hunger strikes and suicide. Some see this as their attempt to blackmail Australia. But I will be the first to admit that it is not that black and white. There are rumors that the detention centres are akin to the places these refugees and que jumpers would have escaped from. I'm not sure of the details here. Some of the que jumpers would genuinely feel upset over being treated like criminals. Put the two together, and add to the fact that they may be Musilum and see their sacrifice as making the government give them better living conditions, or indeed any third or fourth world falalism, and they may see fit to take these measures.
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Originally posted by Phillip Tanaka
And they sometimes go to drastic measures to try and bend the government into giving them what they want, such as the destruction of the detention centres, riots, hunger strikes and suicide. Some see this as their attempt to blackmail Australia. But I will be the first to admit that it is not that black and white.
Not black and white indeed, there are many shades of gray in there. Call me naive if you want, but when people go on hunger strikes or try to commit suicide, I tend towards the idea of utter desperation, not blackmail. Of course, I tend to think that Australia's policies in this regard are pretty screwed up in general. Especially the nearly-criminal idea of merging DIMA with Indigenous Affairs. I mean, what is that supposed to mean anyway, that the Aboriginese are foreigners here? But I guess I'm going off on a tangent a bit :p.
 

Phillip Tanaka

Swabbie
Banned
I don't think it's naive to think that. But I do sometimes wonder what they have to complain about if they are given shelter and food. Of course, John Howard might just want us to think that way. Heh, I still think he wants to take away the right to free speech and protest.

Originally posted by Quarto
Especially the nearly-criminal idea of merging DIMA with Indigenous Affairs. I mean, what is that supposed to mean anyway, that the Aboriginese are foreigners here? But I guess I'm going off on a tangent a bit :p.
No, go to it. Abboriginals as foreigners? No, they're Australians in my book. The ones that don't abuse their rights anyway. Same goes for white Australia and our worldwide immigrents.
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Originally posted by Phillip Tanaka
I don't think it's naive to think that. But I do sometimes wonder what they have to complain about if they are given shelter and food.
Well, many of them end up being held in those camps for many months before they are "processed". You may feel that they should be grateful, but from their point of view, it's a prison.

No, go to it. Abboriginals as foreigners? No, they're Australians in my book. The ones that don't abuse their rights anyway. Same goes for white Australia and our worldwide immigrents.
Well, there used to be a Department of Indigenous Affairs, and a Department of Immigration & Multicultural Affairs. The two have been merged, however, and now there is only the Department of Immigration & Multicultural & Indigenous Affairs. Am I the only one who finds that to be more than just a little bit peculiar? There's probably some money-saving explanation behind it, but the implication of such a merger is that the Aboriginese are foreigners.
 

Phillip Tanaka

Swabbie
Banned
Originally posted by Quarto
Well, many of them end up being held in those camps for many months before they are "processed". You may feel that they should be grateful, but from their point of view, it's a prison.
Yes, some of them would feel they are hard done by. But I'm not sure if there is anything else the government can do when these people come here illegally and have chucked out their identification. For all we know Mullah Omar (the leader of Al Qaeda, and if I may say so, with his eyepatch and grenade launcher would make a good comic villian) could change his appearence and smuggle himself in with refugees. But like I said I don't know whether or not there's something else that can be done. If someone does know, then I'd love to hear it.

Originally posted by Quarto
Well, there used to be a Department of Indigenous Affairs, and a Department of Immigration & Multicultural Affairs. The two have been merged, however, and now there is only the Department of Immigration & Multicultural & Indigenous Affairs. Am I the only one who finds that to be more than just a little bit peculiar? There's probably some money-saving explanation behind it, but the implication of such a merger is that the Aboriginese are foreigners.
Aha. Okay. Well here's my take on it. Captain Cook discovered Australia, which was already home to the abboriginal community. To me, that makes them Australians. And there are those in the abboriginal community who we should be very proud of.
 

Phillip Tanaka

Swabbie
Banned
Ah, that's right.

Taliban:

The Taliban (also spelled Taleban) was created in the early 1990s by Mullah Mohammed Omar, and he is their spiritual guide.

The reclusive supreme leader of Afghanistan's ruling Taliban, Mohammed is known by his followers as the 'Commander of the Faithful', refuses to be photographed or filmed and rarely travels far from his base in the southern town of Kandahar. Abdul Salam Zaeef, the Taliban's ambassador to neighboring Pakistan, is most frequently seen acting as the Mullah's spokesman.

Now in his early 40s, Mullah Omar infrequently gives interviews and is thought to have met only two non-Muslims in the past few years.

Nonetheless what Mohammed says passes as law in the Taliban's Afghanistan and to challenge him is unknown.

Those who have met him say the 41-year-old leader of the Taliban casts an imposing figure -- bearded with a black turban and with one eye stitched shut; the result of a wound sustained during a gunfight with Soviet troops during their occupation of Afghanistan.

When the Soviet Union invaded in 1979 he exchanged his Koran for a rocket-propelled grenade, which was his weapon of choice. After the withdrawal of Soviet troops and the fall of the Moscow-backed Najibullah regime in 1992, Afghanistan fell into banditry and lawlessness.

Disgusted at the state of the country, the last straw for Mullah Omar came when two militia leaders fought a tank battle in the city of Kandahar over the fate of a young man to whom both had taken a fancy. This prompted Mullah Omar to found the Taliban movement in 1994, allegedly after dreaming that God had commanded him to do so in order to restore order. Recruits came from Koranic schools in Afghanistan and in the refugee camps in Pakistan. The fighters took the name Talibs: Islamic religious students.

In 1996 Mullah Omar spurred his followers on by waving before them a sacred relic, a holy cloth of the Prophet Mohamed, which is kept in the grand mosque of Kandahar. It had rarely been seen before. Soon afterwards the Taliban seized Kabul without a fight. At the time many Afghans welcomed the Taliban, believing that their rule would now mark the end of the Afghan wars.

A close friend of Osama bin Laden, Mullah Omar is believed to have married one of his daughters and bin Laden may have married one of Mullah Omar's daughters but the Taliban have always denied this.

Al Qaeda:

According to the indictment that accuses bin Laden of masterminding the 1998 embassy bombings, which killed 224 people and injured thousands, his global network of terror is called Al Qaeda (sometimes spelled Al Qaida), which is Arabic for "the Base."

As the war with the Soviets drew to a close, bin Laden formed al Qaeda, an organization of ex-mujahedeen and other supporters channeling fighters and funds to the Afghan resistance.

His first base was in Sudan, where he moved after leaving Saudi Arabia. But U.S. pressure on that war-racked African country forced him to move to Afghanistan with a military transport planeload of 150 supporters in 1996. He declared war on all Americans the same year.

Since January 1996, a dozen U.S. federal agencies have been cooperating in the effort to stop bin Laden's jihad against Americans. But his network only expanded its reach, with allies in a long list of countries as diverse as Egypt, Somalia, Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Malaysia and the Philippines.

Intelligence officials say that Al Qaeda has a core group of only a few hundred members but that it can call on several thousand followers around the world. Overall, it links about two dozen separate militant Islamic groups, such as Egypt's Al Jihad, Iran's Hezbollah, Sudan's National Islamic Front, and jihad groups in Yemen, Saudi Arabia, and Somalia, according to the U.S. government, all nominally controlled by a council headed by bin Laden.

CIA officials say the underground network frequently crosses into gangsterism. One official cites "ample evidence" that bin Laden's group uses profits from the drug trade to finance its campaign. Followers also have been tied to bank robberies, holdups, credit card fraud and other crimes.

The group also raises money from wealthy citizens and charitable groups that operate as fronts in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the Persian Gulf states, among other nations. The CIA also has obtained evidence indicating that bin Laden has funneled money through banks in two Persian Gulf nations, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar.
 
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