Thursday, February 15, 2007

John Howard's Iraq Stance Deeply Unpopular With Most Australians


Australian Prime Minister John Howard raised eyebrows when he took aim at Sen. Barack Obama with a vicious attack that used the sort of language that one usually encounters only in the right-wing nutcase blogosphere.

In criticizing Obama's call for the removal of U.S. combat forces by March 31, 2008, Howard had this to say:

"I think that will just encourage those who want to destabilize and destroy Iraq, and create chaos and victory for the terrorists to hang on and hope for an Obama victory. If I were running Al Qaeda in Iraq, I would put a circle around March 2008 and be praying as many times as possible for a victory, not only for Obama but also for the Democrats."

It's interesting how Howard seems to be so concerned about bringing democracy to Iraq, when he has utter contempt for democracy in his own nation.

The fact is, Howard ignored the wishes of the overwhelming majority of the Australian people in 2003 when he committed Australian troops to Bush's "Coalition of the Willing."

An astonishing 76 percent of Australians opposed their nation participating in the U.S.-led attack on Iraq. The Australian Senate even voted to censure Howard for committing 2,000 soldiers to Iraq.

Some cynics have noted that perhaps there was some ulterior motive for Howard's participation in the Iraq invasion.

In fact, in Jan. 2005, the U.S. and Australia signed The Free Trade Agreement (FTA) perhaps the most important bilateral economic agreement ever undertaken by Australia, (which was viewed by many observers as a reward for Australian loyalty in the U.S. war on terrorism).

In any case, Howard's utter contempt for doing what the Australian people want appears to have finally caught up with him.

A recent poll shows that Australia's opposition Labor Party leader Kevin Rudd has overtaken Prime Minister John Howard in popularity ahead of elections later this year. The ACNielsen survey of 1,412 voters found that 65 percent of Australians approve of Rudd, the highest satisfaction rating for an opposition leader in the poll's 35 year history. The Associated Press noted that recent polls have suggested that voters are growing increasing unhappy about Howard's involvement in the Iraq war.


Anonymous said...

"Coalition of the Willing" was an Orwellian name for a group of nations in which, with few exceptions, large majorities of the people opposed the War on Iraq. For example in Spain, 80 percent of the people opposed their nation participating in the "Coalition."

Anonymous said...

Mark my words: Howard is going down in flames when he faces re-election later in the year.

Cranky Daze said...

Considering how few Australians are in Iraq, Howard is coming across as rather ignorant.

DallasDeckard said...

God bless John Howard, a man who has stuck to his ideals and commitment. A man who doesn't waver after the first sour poll. Polls that are total bullshit anyway, just read the wording on many of them and it reads like a liberal circle jerk... which sort of reminds me of this blog... one giant circle jerk, lead by the biggest "jerk" of all, a Texan by *geography* ONLY.

Anonymous said...

Americans quite simply love Australians and would never allow Australia to come to harm. Your troop commitment truly is a token gesture to ensure just that.

There's a good reason governments do not pay much attention to indoctrinated college-aged idealists. If you're not a liberal when you're 20 you have no heart, but if you're still a liberal by the time you're 30 you have no brain..

Don't turn your backs on us and we will not turn our backs on you. I hope the adults of Australia never forget our history together and I hope that they never forget that they are a rich, WASP country surrounded by an emerging communist superpower and the largest mulsim country in the world.

Howard knows what he's doing.. Brain-washed 19 year-old twits do not.

Kyle - Texas

Marc McDonald said...

Hi Kyle,
Your quote of Winston Churchill isn't quite accurate, but I'll let that slide and instead just point out that it's clear that "conservatism" to Churchill was something a million miles removed from today's fascist NeoCons.
After all, Churchill once said that "there is no more important thing that a government can spend money on than buying milk for the babies of poor mothers."
That's not exactly what one hears these days from the NeoCon crowd. The latter's view of poor people is, "Screw them, let them starve to death."
(Ironically, though, at the same time they're claiming to be "fiscal conservatives," the NeoCons are busy handing
out trillions of our tax dollars to rich and powerful corporations
and cronies of Bush/Cheney, like Halliburton).

>>>Howard knows what he's doing.. Brain-washed 19 year-old twits do not.

This is rich coming from a Rush-listening, Kool-Aid-drinking NeoCon, who worships at the altar of Bush/Cheney.