Hurray for Australian soldiers

May 26, 2006 3:04 PM

Photo: Reuters

1300 Australian soldiers will be sent to East Timor to quell the unrest and violence there. The troubles began when nearly 600 soldiers who went on strike protesting ethnic discrimination, were fired en masse. The first 130 soldiers have arrived at Dili airport today to secure it for further troop transports.

Unlike Iraq, East Timor is of vital strategic importance to Australia. There’s the resource-sharing of the oil and gas fields in the Timor Gap, and not to mention that any kind of failed states in such close proximity would not be good for Australia. The obvious results of such a situation would be crime and money laundering, refugees and humanitarian concerns, and easy hideouts for terrorists.

Photo: AP

So bravo to the Australian government and the Army for sending the soldiers in. The Army certainly needs the good publicity after the Kovco fiasco. And if the government can fix East Timor (again), then they should really be concentrating on the Solomons Islands next. But one basketcase at a time.

More at the Sydney Morning Herald, including Dominic Knight’s post.

6 thoughts on “Hurray for Australian soldiers

  1. simplysiti

    Erm… i think you got smthg wrong.

    See, Australia is not exactly ‘sharing’ oil resources with East Timor. Australia is actually unilaterally exploiting the oil resources. Australia has refused to settle this matter through international arbitration or allowing it to be brought to the ICJ. So yeah, East Timor, which is one of the poorest nations in the world is not getting anything out of the oil resources that rightfully belongs to them. Australia, one of the richest country in the world is benefiting from the oil resources. I dont think that constitute ‘sharing’.

    But anyhoo, yeah, good on the Australian government for sending troops to East Timor to help curb the unrest. But lets hope Australia wont decide to take some other resource away from East Timor this time.

  2. mooiness Post author

    Countries are like ppl, there’s no such thing as a free lunch unfortunately. In this instance, Australia sees that it has a right to share in the oil and gas because it helped liberated East Timor from Indonesia.

    Regardless, I don’t see many other countries willing to put in the man power and resources to help out East Timor.

  3. mooiness Post author

    cynical-idealist: yeah we are definitely stretched, but I think the police are capable of handling a terrorist strike if there was one. *choi choi*

    Full-scale war then we might be in trouble, but then again who would attack Australia via conventional means anyway?


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