Should Australia join the War on Iraq?
On the 20th March 2003, the Prime Minister, The Hon John Howard Addressed the Nation that the Australian government has decided to commit Australian Forces to action to disarm Iraq in the interest of all Australian's.
"We are determined to join other countries to deprive Iraq of its weapons of mass destruction, its chemical and biological weapons, which even in minute quantities are capable of causing death and destruction on a mammoth scale.
Iraq has been an aggressor in the past against its neighbours and even its own people. If Iraq is allowed to keep these weapons not only might she use them again but moreover other rogue countries will copy Iraq knowing that the world will do nothing to stop them. ".
"Iraq has long supported international terrorism. Saddam Hussein pays $25,000 to each family of Palestinian suicide bombers who wreak such murderous havoc in Israel. He has sheltered and sponsored many terrorist groups.
International terrorism knows no borders. We have learnt that to our cost. Australia and Australians anywhere in the world are as much targets as any other western country and its people. "
We can't deny that the September 11 bombing's in USA have changed all our lives, but why should Australia support USA in the plight to disarm Iraq. The PM says: "Not only will it take dangerous weapons from that country but it will send a clear signal to other rogue states and terrorists groups like Al Qaeda which clearly want such weapons that the world is prepared to take a stand.
There's also another reason and that is our close security alliance with the United States. The Americans have helped us in the past and the United States is very important to Australia's long-term security. " plus " at present there are real concerns about the dangerous behaviour of North Korea."
Hon John Howard then went on to express, "I know that some people are saying that what we have done makes it more likely that terrorists will attack Australia. Australia has been a terrorist target at least since the 11th of September 2001. Australia is a western country with western values. Nothing will or should change that. That is why we are a target. Remember that bin Laden specifically targeted Australia because of our intervention to save the people of East Timor. "
The Prime Minister then went on to point out the type of tyrant we are up against and that it's not an ordinary war. "Another point I'd make to you very strongly is that we're not dealing here with a regime of ordinary brutality. There are many dictatorships in the world. But this is a dictatorship of a particularly horrific kind. "
Often forgotten there is cruelty beyond belief being carried out to non-conforming Iraqi people. "His is an appalling regime: its torture, its use of rape as an instrument of intimidation, the cruelty to children to extract confessions from parents.This week, the Times of London detailed the use of a human shredding machine as a vehicle for putting to death critics of Saddam Hussein. This is the man, this is the apparatus of terror we are dealing with. "
So should we all stand together to "lift this immense burden of terror from the Iraqi people"?. Hon John Howard says yes, "Our argument is with Saddam Hussein's regime. It is certainly not with Islam. "
What about the effects this will have on Australian's community and the people, the Prime Minister says, "Australians of an Arab background or of the Islamic faith are a treasured part of our community. Over the weeks ahead and beyond we should all extend to them the hand of Australian mateship. "
So what about those people out there who are sceptical and untrusting of those around use thinking they could be sleepers ready to strike. The Prime Minister says, "To those in the community who may not agree with me, please vent your anger against me and towards the government. Remember that our forces are on duty in the Gulf in our name and doing their job in the best traditions of Australia's defence forces. "
And his final thoughts on War with Iraq " Can I say something that I know will find an echo from all of you whether or not you agree with the Government. And that is to say to the men and women of the Australian Defence Force in the Gulf - we admire you, we are thinking of you, we want all of you come to back home safe and sound. We care for and we anguish with your loved ones back here in Australia. Our prayers and our hopes are with all of you. "
For a full transcript of the Prime Ministers address visit: http://www.pm.gov.au/We would like to hear from everyone their thoughts of Australia joining forces to War with Iraq.
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