Sunday, July 19, 2009


Another quality editorial from the Australian - The Jakarta bombings are as pointless as they are evil

That these atrocities occurred on the day Barack Obama formally congratulated Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono on his election win last week sends a signal that will not surprise anybody who has clearly heard Osama bin Laden's message over many years. Whatever enemies of Israel and opponents of capitalism in the West think, the Islamist extremists of his al-Qa'ida organisation and its allies are at war with the world. They are not interested in improving the lot of the world's poor or creating a homeland for the Palestinians. Rather, they want a caliphate that bends all Muslims to its will, where infidels are unwelcome. These attacks demonstrate bin Laden and his allies are as good as their word. They do not care that the US has long since closed its bases in Saudi Arabia, al-Qa'ida's original objective, and is leaving Iraq. They are indifferent to the departure of George W. Bush, John Howard and Tony Blair from politics. And they fear Mr Obama's Cairo speech for the way its message of Middle East peace appealed to ordinary Muslims. These attacks demonstrate there is nothing the pious Muslims who rely on the mandate of the people to govern Indonesia can do to appease their attackers. The absence of demands demonstrates the bombings are not part of a campaign to change government policy, or even an attempt to destabilise the country. They are acts of fanatical belief in an unachievable cause. When the people who planned the bombings are captured, they will most likely take their lines from bin Laden and talk about American imperialism and the way the West dishonours Islam. The Bali bombers dressed up their motives in religious rhetoric at their trials, condemning Western decadence, claiming Australians, Americans and Jews -- it is always the Jews -- are oppressing Muslims. But to understand the truth of terrorism, look to the people who actually carry out the bombings, especially suicide attacks. They are the equivalent of the morally malformed adolescents all over the world who take guns to schools and slaughter students. These bombings are the ultimate example of nihilist violence.
The Australian stands in stark contrast to the Fairfax Press which continues to mollycoddle the Palestinian lobby's efforts to demonise and deligitimise Israel and give succour to Islamist terrorism. Jason Koutsoukis' one-sided piece yesterday is yet another example.

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