Adam Bandt, House of Representatives member for Melbourne (and, I’d suggest, an enormous electorate of one and a half million Australians around the country) reminds us just what sort of a government our troops are fighting for – and losing their lives to defend – in Afghanistan:
If we were there to fight for human rights and the rule of law, that would be one thing. But clearly that’s not what we’re doing.
So, to sum up. The Greens are not opposed to the use of military force to achieve human rights objectives, but:
- The Karzai government stands against basic human rights like equality for women;
- There’s every likelihood that we’re encouraging more terrorism than we’re defeating, and radicalising a generation;
- Al Qaeda is mainly in other countries now anyway;
- The US is making noises about pulling out soon themselves.
Funnily enough, the only part of Bandt’s speech I’d seen reported in the news media were his remarks doubting our ability to achieve “victory” in Afghanistan.