How realistic is the terrorist threat to us Aussies? - U2 Feedback

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Old 03-18-2004, 10:09 PM   #1
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How realistic is the terrorist threat to us Aussies?

With our government being supporters of the american governments war on iraq, al qaeda has threatened Oz with terrorist activities.

After seeing what happened in Spain, I'm beginning to get concerned. As a 5 day commuter to the heart of Melbourne, australia's most loved city, i feel somewhat targeted and at risk.

PM Johnny's be alert, not alarmed campaign, escalated alarm and i feel its ever increasingamongst people.

The incompetency of our current government, must be blamed, should anything disasterous happen in the near future.

Some may say we've already been victims through Bali, however personally I never saw Bali as a specific attack on Australians. The real thing might be heading our way

I can only hope my worst fears won't be realised
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Old 03-19-2004, 05:08 AM   #2
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Maybe it's Ostrich syndrome, but I still think we aren't a threat. I've wondered this myself, but cant really see us being a target. No one cares about what we do. Our presence in many conflicts probably shits a lot of these groups, but we're viewed as puppets to Bush. The whole Bali thing saddened me when people would say it was an attack on Australia. I refuse to think it was. We were in high numbers on the victim list, but it was a cowardly attack on a beautiful tourist spot where people escape to have holidays and fun. Did you see the 60 Minutes report thew other night where one of the journos interviewed Amrozi's brother - the one who sold out and apologised to save his own scrawny neck? It made me so angry. They are 3 of the most dispicable scumbags.
It seems of 9/11, Bali and now Madrid, that they were in a way lucky or opportunistic. I would reckon America has always been on the alert in some way, prior 9/11, but I wonder if you can ever see something like that coming. This sounds wrong, as anyone would do anything they could to prevent it if there was prior knowledge, ie the government, but flying planes into a building? It took the world by surprise. America most keenly of all. Would anyone have thought Bali was at risk? And Madrid? I guess this just goes against what I said in the first paragraph that we aren't viewed as a threat to anyone so why us. I guess if anyone is going to get attacked, unless there is due warning, no one will ever know until its too late.
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Old 03-19-2004, 05:56 AM   #3
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Train systems are an easy target and are impossible to secure without incurring extremely high security costs that the price of a train ticket becomes too expensived for people to feasibly catch the train. ie similar to an airline ticket to make one train journey.

The word in the industry is that the Athens Olympics will be like the Atlanta Olympics. No respectable risk management expert wants to be involved with Athens as its so stuffed, no one wants their name associated with it. It would be career suicide.

As for Melbourne, Im not sure why you say its "most loved" city? The Sydney Harbour Bridge would be an easy target as its a landmark and it would seriously disadvantage Sydney for it to be out of action. Not so many deaths but the object of terrorism is terror.

Melbourne, like Perth and the rest of Australia, is not internationally relevant.(sorry) I also catch the train 5 days a week if not 6. And yes its a little scary. Someone left a bag on the bus today and my heart did beat a little bit faster. We had the bomb squad in last year as an abandoned suitcase was found outside one of the libraries. It turned out to be full of porn but we were all a little nervous for a while there. I dont think that little nagging doubt will ever go away in todays climate. For some people anyway. We just spent the past week running evacuation drills on half the campus, some people still whinged about the inconvience (sp?).

But again, all bets are on Athens.

Disclaimer: I make no recommendations whatsoever on any of the issues raised.
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Old 03-19-2004, 06:43 AM   #4
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Do you guys still have rubbish bins on your stations? Ours were all removed for the Olympics and never put back.
I heard contrary for Athens, and that they are doing well with the preparations. For a few weeks the news kept showing all those drills the military were doing, but I guess the media aren't about to point out how weak their preparation is, much like any terrorist group worth their salt are not going to rely on the media for their research of security holes.

I dont think Sydney, or anywhere in Australia is an easy target. In terms of logistics, apart from the 2 most well known landmarks, we have nothing to attack. We're too coastal and sparse comparatively for any real damage to be done. Forget the fact that 2 of the 3 midget Jap subs got into our harbour back in 42...but that is another story
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Old 03-19-2004, 06:56 AM   #5
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I heard the Athens thing from a guy that did the risk managment evacuation excercises for the Sydney Olympics. And who was asked to do Athens and has declined, as have a lot of other people. I spent the past week sharing my work area with him.

I agree that Australias not particularly of international importance. Sydney is an easy target, though. Most of Australia is. Trains are easy. Bridges are easy. The object of terrorism is not real damage but terror. Terrorists are fear merchants. Killing civilians causes panic. Doesnt matter if its 29 or 200 or 4000. The emotional effect is similar.

We have rubbish bins at the stations in Perth but Perths not as large a target as Sydney could have been during the Olympics when so many people were watching.
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Old 03-19-2004, 07:08 AM   #6
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I believe that they will view Spain as a success. They will strike at another ally.

I do not believe the Olympics will be a target unless they target specific nations there. I think it would sway world opinion too much against them.
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Old 03-19-2004, 07:23 AM   #7
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I think the world opinion is already against them eg US, Bali, Madrid. All of which have done a tremendous job in striking fear in the community. Which is what their goal is. The age of 'chivalrous' terrorism is over. ETA used to give warnings and immediately own up, as did the IRA. They wanted it known it was them that caused the carnage, mostly to military or political/government figures. Killing civilians and not taking ownership of the crime is the way at the moment. (Please dont take offense at my reference to chivilary and lack there off. Im aware that it may sound insensitive to some. I dont want this thread shut down like the ambulance thread. Its just the terms used in the industry. Please take the word in its context.)

As for Athens, time will tell. Lets hope we are all wrong.
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Old 03-19-2004, 08:13 AM   #8
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As a regular commuter I can tell you that as a white male (beyond suspicion perhaps? Makes me worry considering some of the real nut jobs that are out there) I could take anything on a train at a station at the end of the line and bring it straight into spencer st station. As far as instantly blaming the government in the event of a situation perhaps you should wait until the dust settles, you need to know who, how and why before you can jump to conclusions.

As for Iraq increasing us as a target, I don't believe that it makes us anymore of a target in terms of general hatred of US allies, secular societys etc. but it does place the additional threat of being used to attack the US by proxy through its allies. When terrorsts resort to such measures it shouldnt force us to become ambivilent to the US alliance and remove ourselves from the fight for that would be weak willed and cowardly. An Australia that isn't willing to fight (on all levels; social, political, economic and millitarily) to preserve the values we hold so dear such as democracy, egalitarianism and religious tollerance and to bring those values to the rest of the world wherever opression and violence reign (Look at Cambodia people!) does not deserve the "peace" that would be bought at the expense of our dearest values.

In conclusion there is an ever present threat to Australia from terrorism. This threat must be adressed and fought in a bipartisan and multilateral way, we must never confuse issues of counter-terrorism with war. Failure to go after the terrorists and to strike at their support base (these bastards are able to manipulate a lot of people by contributing to Islamist Madrasses, if the west was to fund massive education programs it would slash the recruitment base for these terrorists and would give us a generation of properly educated leaders for the countries that sit between economic disaster and total disintegration of the state) with a program such as this we would regain a lot of goodwill around the world and best of all create democratic governments pre-emptively and all for much lower than the cost of any modern war (Im reminded of the UN in the early '90s paying some 20 million for diplomats to resolve and prevent conflict and 70 billion to keep peacekeepers all around the world). Ultimately until we go for the source and wait for the current generation of terrorists to die off we will be at risk and it doesnt make a damn difference if we walk away from our strong US alliance and all of the benefits that it brings to the country.
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Old 03-19-2004, 11:07 AM   #9
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I hope nothing happens in Australia. I hope nothing happens in Athens. There is so much madness in the world.
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