Page 3994 - Week 12 - Thursday, 20 October 2005

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A number of RAAF pilots took part in that revolt, flying in supplies from Italy, and a number of them lost their lives. A memorial was opened only last year along the Federal Highway, out near the border, commemorating those very brave Australian airmen, some of whom are still alive and living in Canberra.

Of course, after the war, Poland became part of the Eastern bloc and until 1978, apart from a few struggles against the oppressive regime and the Russians, it remained part of it. In 1978, Pope John Paul became pope. Solidarity was inspired by that and other things and was founded by Lech Walesa in 1980. Finally, in 1989, probably as a result of those efforts, the Eastern bloc crumbled. Eastern Europe—though perhaps not so much the old Soviet Union—is certainly much better off today, and hopefully in the not too distant future the people of Russia, too, will be better off.

Poland has always been a fairly heroic country and often has been conquered by its larger neighbours. This little book makes note of the fact that, unlike every other country occupied by the Germans with the possible exception of, I think, Denmark, there were no Poles who formed units to assist the Germans. There were no quislings, and even though the Germans tried to involve the Poles in their war against the Russians they were unsuccessful. I remember Marian Domagala, who as a 14-year-old fought in the Polish army. He and his mates used to blow up German trains going to Russia. He said that if he had known what would happen later maybe he would have had second thoughts. But then he said, “No, we were fighting the Germans and that was what we needed to do.” So I send congratulations to everyone of Polish extraction and the people of Poland on 11 November.

Chief Minister

MR PRATT (Brindabella) (6.06): I want to speak about the Chief Minister’s position on the anti-terrorism laws and his breaching of the confidentiality of the legislation. Mr Stanhope loves to detail the journalists, academics and other commentators who have spoken out in support of him. He has run through a list of those, and he is quite entitled to do that. I heard one of Jon’s favourites, Hilary Charlesworth, speaking this morning on ABC radio. She said some things that were quite dangerous in terms of the debate about the need to introduce anti-terrorism laws. She said basically that these laws were simply based on scaremongering. She criticised the federal government’s comments, saying that the federal government’s comment that these are extraordinary times that call for extraordinary measures was “simply a furphy”, and went on to talk about a number of things.

She also criticised the Malaysia-Singapore experience. Of course, they have had anti-terrorism laws in place for a very, very long time. She criticised the approaches of those two states because their laws, which are called emergency acts, had not stopped terrorism. Nobody ever said that such laws, including those laws that we are seeking to bring in here, would ever stop terrorism. The aim is to minimise the threat. Of course, Malaysia and Singapore have had those laws in place since their rather extraordinary circumstances dating back to the last days of the Malayan emergency, which affected the entire South East Asian archipelago, and those laws have indeed worked. So Hilary is quite wrong.

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