Monday, May 22, 2006
Prime Minister John Howard, with CNN's Wolf Blitzer, on relations with the US and Muslim terrorism:
BLITZER: A lot of us remember all those Australian tourists who were killed in that terrorist attack in Bali. The sense you get is that al-Qa'ida is targeting Australians largely because of Australia's very close alliance with the US. Is that a fair assessment?
Howard: No, it's not a fair assessment. We are undeniably a close ally of the US and we don't make any bones about it. But the fact is that Australia was a target for terrorism before even the 11th of September, 2001, and Bali, of course, took place before the coalition operation in Iraq. And if you look at where the terrorist attacks have occurred over the [past] couple of years, you'll find that they have occurred in places [that] have claimed the lives of citizens of countries that haven't been particularly close to the US. And indeed, when terrorists attack, they attack with indiscriminate fury and without much selectivity ... The idea which is implicit in your question, that if you make yourself a very small object and roll yourself up into a ball and disappear into a corner, that you won't be targeted by terrorists, I think that is quite illusionary.
I can't think of a more perfect illustration of the difference between appeasement of Islamic terrorism and a courageous response to it.
Posted by Freedom Fighter at 11:30 AM