Sunday, 12 October 2003

Remembrance of Bali

One year ago, today. From Redgum's song :

Tourists from Holland, Britain and France
Late night puppet shows, leg on dance
Want to see my slides?
I've been to Bali too.
We may forgive - if repentance is shown. But we won't forget.

88 of the 202 known deaths in the bombing of the Sari nightclub in Bali were Australian. More Balinese may have gone home to die, and not been recorded. But there were another 450 burns victims too, some of whom still haven't made as complete a recovery as they're going to. Some of whom are missing legs, or arms, or eyes.

Proportionately to Australia's population, Bali was very much our 9/11. Pretty much everyone here knew one of the victims, or lived on the same street. Even now, when I last posted an article overseas, I heard two people in the queue discussing how a friend of theirs was doing.

My 2-year old son Andrew had to wait several months for some corrective surgery, because every single plastic surgeon in the country was busy treating the hundreds of burns victims. We stayed up with him, night after night, as he cried in pain. Pain that grew worse, day by day.

He's fixed up now. But I'll never forget.

It may take 20, 50, 100 years, or even longer, but we intend to make radical Islamofascism extinct. The planet isn't big enough for the both of us.

We've started by financing hospitals in Bali, to say "thanks" for all the help the locals gave us.
We've started by financing educational facilities in Indonesia, as an alternative to the Saudi-financed Madrassas that spawned the Islamofascist movement in SE Asia.
We've started by giving professional forensic help that gave the Indonesia police the evidence they needed to decimate JI.
And we've started by sending in the SAS into Iraq - going after the "Safe Havens", with malice aforethought. Terror knows no bounds, but neither do we.

It's a start.

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