Monday, September 23, 2002


Left wing members of Her Majesty’s loyal Opposition here in the Land of Oz have begun to display their serious colours, as the nation’s leaders debate what to do about Saddam.

Opposition frontbencher Carmen Lawrence wants a conscience vote:
"Typically," she said, "we think about conscience votes when it comes to abortion ... before life, in the eyes of many, has really begun. How much more important perhaps, when we're talking about the loss of life [of] living, human beings?"

There can be no question about Lawrence’s sincerity, and her desire to rely on hard evidence. After all, lack of hard evidence meant she was found innocent of perjury charges, despite a Royal Commission finding she was lying in sworn evidence, and the testimony of four Cabinet colleagues directly contradicting her evidence. She was simply too busy defending herself against the male political hegemony to express similar regret for the woman who suicided after her allegations. Lawrence has stated she wishes to save her concern for the living.

Inner city speed bump Tanya Plibersek has at least made her position clear:
she could not see herself "supporting war unless there was clear evidence Iraq had a nuclear weapon loaded and pointed at Tel Aviv".
"I would not support a US first strike and I would think twice about even United Nations action," she said.

Just so we have this clear: it doesn’t matter if the UN backs an attack; it is preferable for Saddam who she describes as
an evil regime, which has murdered its own people, which has used chemical weapons.

to acquire nuclear weapons and threaten Israel, un unrelated party, rather that take any form of action against Saddam.

Perhaps these people would be more believable if they could point to the same stridency of protests over the US attacks on Serbia. Personally, I’d like to see Carmen and Tanya commit to a speaking tour in the newly liberated Iraq, to explain their opposition. They could address the Kurds, the Shi-ites, and the parents of the inmates of Saddam’s special children’s prison. Without bodyguards.

Now that’s television!

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