A General revolt

Hot on the heels of Andrew’s post on why Australians dislike their politicans, comes a statement from 43 of Australia’s former military chiefs, department heads and senior diplomats about the importance of truth in government. The statement (read about it here) lambasts Howard for the way in which he took Australia to war and says in part:

If we cannot trust the word of our government, Australia cannot expect it to be trusted by others. Without that trust, the democratic structure of our society will be undermined and with it our standing and influence in the world.

An interesting point to ponder is why our foreign policy and military elite have been so slow to speak out against Howard’s foreign policy. No doubt some agreed with it, but this letter makes it clear that many did not. In light of that, consider this: today’s statement comes more than three months after 52 former British diplomats delivered a damning critique of Blair’s close alliance with Bush and their “doomed” Middle East policy (click here for the story), and nearly as long since a bipartisan coalition of 27 career chiefs of mission and retired four-star military leaders in the US launched a campaign against the Bush administration’s foreign and defense policy (click here to read about the campaign). Then again, maybe the timing was deliberate…

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