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What actually is the Greens position on Afghanistan?

by Dave Riley
Do the Greens support the present occupation of Afghanistan or not?

No minor point, I would think, and something that any one should be able to take "about 3 minutes to find."

We do find notorious comments like this --which I was very much aware of:
Greens leader Bob Brown says it is not Australia's business.
"It was the US which invaded Afghanistan," he said.
"Now, for domestic reasons, we've got the Bush administration wanting to withdraw troops from Iraq and Afghanistan and Australia to fill in the holes.
"That's not our job, it never was. Our troops should be in our area, looking after our neighbourhood, defending Australia's regional interests.
So the problem is, it seems, according to Brown, that Afghanistan is 'too far' away from Australia. That if the Taliban were purportedly in Bali or Bougainville then "our troops" should be there looking after "our" neighbourhood interests there.

So WHAT ACTUALLY IS the Greens position on the Afghan invasion? It's not as though the contradiction hasn't been pointed out to them before. One assumes they aren't deaf.

But since Brown's comments over 18 months ago there has not been a ready embrace of a position advocating that the Afghani people be free of invading forces.

So here in yesterday's press we have a "major" outline on what Australians think of Afghanistan invasion --
Half of Australians oppose the troop deployment to Afghanistan,
according to a new poll to be released in Sydney today, leaving both
sides of politics off-side with public opinion.
-- and so far, my feed reader is telling me that the Greens haven't taken up the challenge to put out a press release on the topic in order to exploit the opportunity to assert their anti-war credentials. They have "x" number of media officers do they not?

This is a very hot issue, isn't it?

I'm not being picky because the whole question of your attitude to US policy and the "war on terror" has a lot to do with what you decide to say about Afghanistan.

But don't get me wrong. I'm not suggesting that Greens members are as tardy as Brown on this point. I AM suggesting that for as long as this issue is left hanging, the Greens leadership/pollies are playing a conservative game that wants to , in fact, support the "war on terror" while being dedicated to an anti war stance.

It's my ingrained political cynicism you see. Things like this are never oversights in politics. It so often is conscious obscurantism. So I'm asking of the Greens to clarify.

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