On Turnbull’s hypocrisy
John Richardson writes: Re. “Turnbull govt exemplifies the sordid hypocrisy of Western politicians” (Monday)
So, “nothing to see here” Malcolm Turnbull reckons that “there can be no ungoverned spaces” because they pose great risks. Onya Malcolm … way to go Malcolm … but risks for who, Malcolm?
What about the “ungoverned spaces” in the British Virgin Islands? Or the US state of Delaware? Or the Cayman Islands? And what’s the value of your lectures about the importance of the rule of law when your flaky ministerial colleagues treat the judiciary with contempt? What a hypocrite you are, Malcolm.
On Daesh’s expulsion from Mosul
Michael Kane writes: Re. “After Islamic State is run out of Mosul, what then?” (Wednesday June 21)
One suspects 95 % of Australians have no idea why we are still fighting in Iraq and Syria as one also suspects that many Australians have no idea why we were fighting in the same region in World War 1 (and pretty much every time we have been there in-between). Suffice to say that Australia, as a foreign policy outpost of the UK and then the US, continues to send our armed forces half way round the world to fight in interminable and indiscriminate wars across territories that are historically complex and culturally fraught. An important reason for this is the appalling mess made by the victors at Versailles with their imposition of “nations states” in West Asia (the Middle East if you still believe in the British empire) in the specific interests of the victorious colonial allies. It hasn’t got any better since. The “West” if it still has any coherence cannot fix anything — nor can Russia. Ultimately Egypt, Iran and Turkey as the key and “real” nations states in the region with permanent interest dating back millennia will have to take responsibility for the compound failures of several generations.
Australia should disengage from West Asia. We have no plan and no reason to be there. We have the largest Muslim country in Indonesia immediately to our north together with China and India, the two most populated nations in the world. All our foreign policy energies in its various manifestations should be about our relationship with them, and other Asian states of which we are one, if the legacy to the following generations is going to be positive.