MORE MUSH FROM THE WIMP. Oestrogen addict Hugh Mackay imagines an Australian wonderland under his benevolent leadership.

"IN THE few weeks of peace left to us," intones Mike Carlton, "we are seeing a calamitous global failure of American diplomacy."

And the "the really fearsome thing" according to Mike, is that "this US Administration is evidently eager for the collapse of the authority of the United Nations." Picture children all over the planet weeping at the prospect of no more UN. Life won't be worth living.

"MORE THAN 100,000 people - believed to be Melbourne's largest peace rally - marched through the city yesterday to protest against a war on Iraq," reports The Melbourne Age. Actually, Iraq had nothing to do with it; this was a rally against America, George W. Bush, John Howard, and Tony Blair:

Senator Brown called on Prime Minister John Howard to bring back Australian ships that have already left for the Persian Gulf.

"This is President Bush's war, this is Tony Blair's war, but this is not Australia's war," he said.

Democrat senator Natasha Stott Despoja told the rally that America was the greatest possessor of weapons of mass destruction and the only country to use nuclear weapons during a war.

"We know war is bloodshed. It is not the answer."

Melbourne's Herald Sun has additional Stott Despoja comments:

"The Prime Minister can't ignore this," Senator Stott Despoja said.

"How dare he disregard the public will.

"We Australians are unequivocally opposed to war under any sanction, UN or not," she said.

So Natasha is opposed to war regardless of UN sanctions? Mike Carlton will be appalled. Stott Despoja is evidently eager for the collapse of the authority of the United Nations.

YESTERDAY on ABC Radio a leader of Australia's antiwar movement proposed a simple means of achieving regime change in Iraq. I'm paraphrasing here, for no link is available, but her idea ran something like this:

Remove the sanctions that subject so many Iraqis to poverty and they will be happier and better-fed and then they will band together and rise up and overthrow Saddam Hussein and all will be well. Sing with me, people! All we are sayyyyiiiing, is give peace a chance …

And that was it. I was so impressed I almost went into cardiac arrest. A subsequent caller to the same program had this to say: "I think America is the axis of evil." There's something new – a one-nation axis. The ABC gets the listeners it deserves.

BITTER SYDNEY Morning Herald loser Alan Ramsey
on George W. Bush:

This wee, strutting caricature of an American president, with his cowboy boots and cowboy language, his persistent appeals to God in defence of "freedom-loving people" - rhetoric the rest of us ridiculed when the Soviets and China forever spouted it during the worst of the Cold War in the '50s and '60s - is, without doubt, the most frightening US leader any of us have experienced.

Does anybody else recall the Soviets or China invoking God?

So, too, the two most influential figures in his administration: Vice-President Cheney and the Defence Secretary, Donald Rumsfeld. Both are wealthy Republican retreads from the Nixon White House of almost 30 years ago. Both are the real powers in George jnr's Washington 29 years after the disgraced Nixon was driven from office.

Any link to Nixon = guilty guilty guilty!

All three scare the pants off most of us.

Guess that explains all the nude protesting of late. Twisted old Al today offers us a supplementary piece to his usual Saturday column; he's reprinted 428 words from Michael Moore's Stupid White Men. At least Moore can't be accused of being "wee" or "strutting"; he's morbidly obese and waddle-gaited, the way Ramsey prefers his Americans to be.

USUAL e-mail operations have resumed. Hit my name at the top left of screen to send me a note. If possible, make it slightly more intelligible than this, from caring leftist Anne M.:


you dumb fuck!bet you voted anti republic ha ha,yeah i can really see the
appeal of the royal family.when did the bullying stop tim?was it after you
left school or before.

i cut wood for a living tim but after reading your site for an hour even i
could see you were a troubled young man..seek help tim buy a travel book or
even take some heroin and watch a documentry on dolphins then you can come
join us.your missing out tim,when your lying on your deathbed gasping for
your final breath your gonnae think of all the things you never done and
your gonna cry,your gonna cry like a baby tim,and your final words will
be"can i start again please daddy"then its lights out tim.selah

She read this site for an hour. It's unfair of her to judge me on the evidence of only 12 words.


SPEAKING STRINE TO POWER. David Penberthy presents the case for war in authentic Australian dialect. Mate, it's a dead-set bloody masterpiece. A ripper, if you will:

"The President was asked whether Australia is part of the coalition of the willing. My oath we are. We're as willing as buggery. As billio. We're as willing as all get-out.

"That said, we are not yet dead-set for a stoush, and still believe that an honest yarn can sort out this barney – but only if Saddam is true blue about it.

"We see little point, however, in adopting the shirt-lifting position taken by some of the continentals.

"France and Germany are an absolute cotcase, a hopeless bloody rabble. This is hardly surprising, as both nations have well and truly got the runs on the board in the showpony stakes.

"Many of you will be familiar with my colleague Alexander Downer and his doctrine of the busted-arse countries.

"Today I expand that doctrine to include another category – the up-themselves purse-swinging states of Western Europe.

"The Frogs, with their history of having a bob each way, only to bludge their way out of strife, and the Krauts, who brought us the maddest bastard and biggest dust-up of the 20th century, but come the raw prawn in the face of a comparable global shemozzle.

"To the Europeans I say – fair suck of the sav. Unless you lift your game – and quick smart – you will be found standing, dacked, before world opinion.

"In the coming donnybrook, I would also stress that we have absolutely no worries with the Muslim peoples of the world."

A translation will be made available on request. Although it might be funnier if US readers sent their translations for posting here …

JUST IN time for Valentines Day, the first human shields have arrived in Baghdad. We love you, Saddam! Now tell us where to stand so we can protect your tools of mass death!

PETER ROEBUCK, the Robert Fisk of sports writing, is yet to witness a bad circumstance in which whitey isn't to blame:

More than ever the feeling grows that this African competition is being spoiled by oversensitive visitors from predominantly Anglo-Saxon countries.

Oh, please. As more than one reader has noted, if Australia's players had behaved like Pakistan's during Tuesday's match, Roebuck would be calling for them to be necklaced. As it is, he believes Australia deserves whatever we get. Roebuck should abandon cricket and comment on issues he's more comfortable with – like chasing boys around and spanking them.

BRING IT ON, Rashid! And while we're on World Cup matters, no blogger is covering it better than Teacher Tony. Lively, funny, loads of links, tons of comments. Scroll down a little for the most recent update.

THE ODDS of Australia beating England 3-1 in Wednesday's soccer match were one hundred to one. Happy Aussies cashed in.

MY USUAL e-mail ain't been right for about ten hours. Send to this address instead.


SEVERAL AUSTRALIAN ARMED FORCES personnel headed for the Middle East are returning home rather than be injected with an anthrax vaccine:

Last night Able Seaman Simon Bond, an electrical engineer, said he and two others had been airlifted from the Kanimbla after refusing to take the vaccination.

After receiving information from a family member at home about Gulf War syndrome, he decided against taking the vaccine.

This dire situation – a total of eleven people are involved – prompted the ABC's Matt Brown to prosecute Defence Minister Robert Hill over the minister's evident hatred of all humankind:

MATT BROWN: Are you concerned about the situation on the ship? It is going up into a pretty tense environment and this person's saying that a lot of people on the ship were unhappy.

ROBERT HILL: I would've thought they'd be unhappy if they weren't being vaccinated [laughs]. That, that doesn't make sense to me, you know. We accept a ...

MATT BROWN: But you'd have some sympathy for them, wouldn't you? I mean these are our serving personnel going up to the Gulf, and they're worried about all this question of disease and vaccinations. You, you have no sympathy ...

ROBERT HILL: Well, I ...

MATT BROWN: For their concern?

ROBERT HILL: I think that you're putting words into their mouths. We send them on this mission best equipped to achieve their goal successfully and safely. And in relation to threats that are of a chemical or biological nature, we are, we are having to provide special equipment and particular vaccinations and inoculations and the like.

MATT BROWN: And still no expression from you at all of any sympathy for this, these people's concerns?

ROBERT HILL: Well I don't understand your question. Sympathy for their concerns?

MATT BROWN: Well, can you understand that they're worried?

ROBERT HILL: No, I can't understand your question. I've just said that. I don't ...

MATT BROWN: Can you understand their concerns? That they're worried. There's talk about a link with Gulf War Syndrome. Plenty of people in military service in, over, in the past, have experienced health problems when they come home and there seems to be some concern about the people, amongst the people, who we're sending up there to the Gulf.

ROBERT HILL: Their concern would be if they weren't being properly protected. If they weren't being vaccinated, if they weren't being properly equipped to meet the threat. And it's our responsibility to ensure that they are properly equipped, properly vaccinated and that's the responsibility we're meeting.

The ABC is more worried about vaccinations against weapons of mass destruction than it is about the weapons themselves.




KEN LAYNE has devised a personalised terror survival kit, which includes:

* Two cases of Chianti Classico. And a bottle each of Glenfiddich, Kettel One, Cuervo Gold and some other booze. Don't forget the mixers.

* Manual typewriter, index cards and a wind-up clock. Blogging will be impossible if it gets really bad. So I'll just type my posts and do a time-stamp and pin the cards on the wall ... in descending order.

I'm with Ken on these. But the custom Blair Terror Kit would also add:

* Several live children. So that, if our post-apocalyptic encampment were attacked by eye-patched, bandanna-shod marauders, we could say "What about the children?" and everything would be all right. Also, for food.

* Video equipment. Because in a world where our values have been destroyed and our planet ruined, Funniest Home Video footage will be the new currency.

* 24-hour tech support for i-book owners. Hey, I've just bought one. That warranty says three years, and they'd better deliver.

TERRIBLE RACISM in a cricket match! And an Australian is involved! But, incredibly, the alleged racism goes unpunished! Why? WHY?

JUAN GATO complains that he is never interviewed. This is a situation I intend to remedy.

EX-TEST CRICKETER Kerry O'Keefe says that the Australia Sports Drug Agency is too strict – and suggests a lenient attitude towards Shane Warne.

MAYBE YOU'RE one of those lucky people who've never endured a migraine. Maybe you're curious; is the pain as extreme as people say?

Well, do you really want to know? Then take this Interactive Migraine Simulator Test, which simply involves reading the following Margo Kingston paragraph three times:

So Osama's voice is back, reminding us once again that the bloke the world bombed Afghanistan to get got away. He's the voice guaranteed to get world-wide coverage, and the voice says attack when the US attacks Iraq. Attack Saddam, and the enemy of Osama's enemy becomes his ally. Thanks, George.

Read four times for hospitalisation. Five times for fatal brain haemorrhage.

MIRANDA DEVINE on Australian anti-Americanism, and more:

Returning from holiday in the US this week, I have been struck by the infantile level of debate here over Iraq. Just for starters, there has been the nude peace protest in Byron Bay, the sneering tone of the anti-Bush letters to the editor, the gross anti-Americanism exhibited by federal Labor and fellow travellers, the "gotcha" reaction to Bush's unremarkable "coalition of the willing" remarks and the wacko campaign to persuade people to send their anti-terrorism packs back to the Government as a war protest.

My favourite part of the Byron Bay nude protest: in order to register their disapproval of Australia mindlessly duplicating America's pro-war stance, the Australian nudists mindlessly duplicated an American anti-war stance. They are tubby slaves to US hegemony.

MALCOLM KNOX is trying to be funny. It's like the Special Olympics for satirists.


JOHN HAWKINS presents a rockin' interview with Mark Steyn, whose taste in bloggers – and in books by bloggers – is fine indeed. Ken Layne features all over the place. By the way, courtesy of Ken an actual printed copy of the LA Examiner arrived here this week, and it's a thing of beauty. People are drawn to it. Gimme a deal on some shares, pal!

POOR GERMANS. What did they ever do to deserve being burnt, suffocated, or maimed? And the mass slaughter of women, children and the elderly during World War II is something no German will ever forget:

I hope the attempt by the French and German governments to find a peaceful solution to the Iraq crisis will be successful in order to avoid senseless killing of humankind.

I and many other Germans will never forget the American terror bombings of German cities during WWII and the mass slaughter of women, children and the elderly for years on end.

The horror of burnt, suffocated and maimed citizens has haunted me all my long life.

Karl-Heinz Walter, Kensington Banks

Yeah. Sounds terrible. Hey, Karl ... Dachau! Auschwitz! Belsen! Ever heard of these places? Ringing any bells, Karl? The number six million mean anything to you? Guy with a moustache? Kristal fucking nacht?

Oh, well. Perhaps Walter's letter to The Melbourne Age is a joke. Could be, you know. So could this letter to The Australian, from James Vicars:

Australia is poised, for the first time in its history as a nation, to invade another sovereign country. Such shame will stain our ethos beyond Gallipoli.

SPEAKING OF invasions, reader Maor Eichler writes:

I just wanted to say that the British cemetery next to my house in Be'er-Sheva, Israel, seems to contain mainly Australians. I'd also like to point out that we're all quite thankful they invaded this country.

IT COULD turn out to be the first ever live-to-air fisking: American James Morrow meets anti-American John Pilger tonight on Radio National's Late Night Live to discuss anti-Americanism with anti-American Phillip Adams. Tune in at 10pm, or, if you're outside Australia – possibly even in Amerikkka – catch the real audio replay available in a day or so.

UPDATE. Pilger was a no-show. Dull program.

THIS WEEK'S COLUMN in The Bulletin mentions naked Byron Bay protesters, George W. Bush, Saddam Hussein, Colin Powell, Carmen Lawrence, Gareth Parker, Sir John Kerr, Steve Bracks, Ernie Els, Adolf Hitler, John Valder, the European Union, and Sydney Morning Herald clichemongers Mark Baker, Tony Stephens, and Mike Carlton.

Take a look around while you're at The Bulletin's site. Recommended reading: this US Marines memo to journalists planning on covering events in Iraq ("Our marines are smart, eager and aggressive and looking forward to 'adopting' you for this war") and a remarkable interview with US Ambassador to Australia Tom Schieffer, who has this advice for Labor leader Simon Crean: "The way you have influence with George Bush is not to tell him what he ought do through the newspapers, but to his face."

Crean has been crying about this interview all morning on the ABC, saying it's the worst intrusion in Australian politics since the Japanese bombed Darwin, or some such nonsense. God, man; get a grip.

IS OSAMA BIN LADEN DEAD? Put it this way: he isn't exactly answering his e-mails. This latest audio tape is less convincing than a Raelian clone claim.

LAST NIGHT I was in a room with an Italian and an American applauding a West Indian-descended England-raised Australian batsman playing against Pakistan in South Africa. Just another evening in repressive, monocultural Sydney.

FORMER SUPREME Court judge Sir Edward Woodward tries his hand at psychoanalysing George W. Bush:

I have seen and heard him so often that I feel as though I know him. He comes across to me as a religious fundamentalist, who thinks God is on his side in all he does, and so has no need for doubts or for compassion.

My impression is reinforced by his attitude to the death penalty, both as Governor of Texas and as President. This has led to large numbers of people - mainly poor blacks and Hispanics - being executed years after demonstrably inadequate trials that could never have occurred in Australia.

His doctrinaire attitude to birth control is a further example of his lack of understanding and sympathy for the world's poor. His lack of support for many United Nations treaties shows how little he cares about world opinion.

I've never met Sir Edward Woodward, but I feel as though I know him. He comes across to me as a total muppet.

NEW YORK POST editor Col Allan's clever decision to send Steve Dunleavy into France – many bottles have presumably surrendered – has yielded the incredible tale of Howard Manoian. How does Dunleavy find these people?

JACQUES CHIRAC is a mere pimp for Saddam, writes Christopher Hitchens in the Melbourne Age:

He has unctuously said that "force is always the last resort". Vraiment? This was not the view of the French establishment when troops were sent to Rwanda to try to rescue the client regime that had just unleashed ethnocide against the Tutsi. It is not, one presumes, the view of the French generals who are treating the people and nation of Cote d'Ivoire as their fief. It was not the view of those who ordered the destruction of an unarmed ship, the Rainbow Warrior, as it lay at anchor in a New Zealand harbour after protesting against the French official practice of conducting atmospheric nuclear tests in the Pacific. (I am aware that some of these outrages were conducted when the French Socialist Party was in power, but in no case did Chirac express anything other than patriotic enthusiasm. If there is a truly "unilateralist" government on the UN Security Council, it is France.)

Something's up at The Age. Lately the opinion pages are showing ominous signs of balance.

ACTUAL CRUSHING of dissent, Zimbabwe-style.


He was derided during the Tampa days in the spring of 2001 as a subservient sycophant to what former Liberal leader John Hewson called the "latent racial prejudice" in the community.

Now, on Iraq, he's depicted as the arrogant, aloof politician who ignores the wisdom of the people.

Whether his opponents are accusing him of base populism, as on Tampa, or snubbing the people, as on Iraq, they do so with equal vitriol. Why?

Because Howard is effective. He proved that at three elections and he might just prove it over Iraq.

He's proving something in the US. Yesterday an American reader sent $5 via Paypal so I could buy the Prime Minister a drink! I think he's a Scotch man …


SHANE WARNE. Positive drug test. Out of the World Cup.

GLOBAL UNITY is achieved. Mecca-bound Muslims sound almost identical to dipweed Western anti-oil fragheads:

"America wants to control the Arab world and its wealth. We are all soldiers for Iraq. All Arab countries must unite and do something. We are all Muslim brothers and have the same blood," said Faruq Ahmad, a 50-year-old engineer from Syria.

"Death to America, (US President George W) Bush and Israel. They are enemies of Islam," screamed Habib Pivali, a 46-year-old nurse from Iran.

"America wants the Arab oil. Washington is certainly the enemy of Muslims," said Yavuz, 30, from Turkey.

Which is exactly what you'd expect from ... LOOK OUT, YAVUZ! HERE COMES A CRUISE MISSILE! AIEEEE! He he. Scared you.

WILL THEY EVER reach Bahgdad? Ken Nichols O'Keefe's dream of delivering human shields to Saddam Hussein has been undermined by his bullying nature and the stupidity of his followers, reports The Sunday Times :

Rajia Dhanjani, a 22-year-old hairdresser from south London, said: "I thought it would be hard when we got to Baghdad, but I had no idea the trip would be this awful. I thought the journey would be one long party."

The rows started almost as soon as the group left London a fortnight ago, with arguments over which routes to take. A black bus owned by Ken Nichols O'Keefe, 33, a tattooed former US marine and Gulf war veteran, and full of young firebrands, drove through Germany to Italy even though the vehicle was too tall for the Alpine tunnels and scraped its roof.

Tension was compounded when a group of Italian peace campaigners in designer clothes joined the Britons, many of whom are elderly activists wearing hippie-style clothes and cooking lentils aboard the buses. Instead of heading towards their objective, the peaceniks took a detour to Rome last Sunday for sightseeing.

[Nichols O'Keefe] has angered other peaceniks by planning to meet Saddam on his arrival in Baghdad. At least five have returned home rather than deal with him and a Welsh couple have set out to reach the Iraqi capital on their own.

"People have got so fed up with him that they have dropped out,” said Letts. Nichols O'Keefe was dubbed "the messiah" and "Gandhi" by his less-than-enthusiastic fellow travellers.

Grace Trevett, a mother of four from Stroud, Gloucestershire, said: "There has been no democracy at all. Ken just tells people they have to like it or they can f*** off. If they can't respect us, how are they going to respect the Iraqi people?"

Calm down, Grace. Nichols O'Keefe is now in an Italian jail awaiting possible deportation to the US after attempting to enter Turkey on a "world citizen" passport. His leaderless rabble will likely make it to Iraq about three months after liberation.

UPDATE. Messiah Ken is free! He's fixing his broken old bus, and thinks he might be on the road from Rome as early as this Friday. Go, Super Messiah Ken, go!

ZIMBABWEAN CRICKETERS Andy Flower (who is white) and Henry Olonga (who is black) will both wear black armbands throughout the current World Cup. Why?

"In doing so, we are mourning the death of democracy in our beloved Zimbabwe," [their] statement read. "In doing so, we are making a silent plea to those responsible to stop the abuse of human rights in Zimbabwe. In doing so, we pray that our small action may help to restore sanity and dignity to our Nation.

"We cannot in good conscience take to the field and ignore the fact that millions of our compatriots are starving, unemployed and oppressed. We are aware that hundreds of thousands of Zimbabweans may even die in the coming months through a combination of starvation, poverty and Aids.

"We are aware that many people have been unjustly imprisoned and tortured simply for expressing their opinions about what is happening in the country ... [and] people have been murdered, raped, beaten and had their homes destroyed because of their beliefs."

I wonder what the people who cheered Mugabe at the UN Sustainability Festival feel when they read things like this. Probably nothing.

UPDATE. Simon Barnes considers Olonga and Flower's gesture "the most courageous in the history of sport":

There is already talk of banning Olonga from his club, Takashinga, but that is the least of his worries. To take public opposition to a tyrant in your own land is to invite revenge of a terrible and wide-ranging kind. So Flower and Olonga played the games of their lives for Zimbabwe. Should you care, they also beat Namibia in a rain-affected match.

GEORGE W. BUSH on Prime Minister John Howard: "I certainly count him as someone who understands the world changed on September 11, 2001."

CARL ROBINSON, a former war correspondent and U.S. aid worker who lived in South Vietnam from 1964 until 1975, is leading a tour of Vietnam that departs Sydney on April 23. Cost is $A2,990 (twin share) for 14 days. The tour covers Saigon, Vung Tau, Baria, Nui Dat, Luscombe Airstrip, Binh Ba, Baria Tunnels, Horseshoe, Phuoc Hai, Hoa Long, Dat Do, My Thuan Bridge, Sa Dec, Ben Tre, Hue, The Citadel, Minh Mang Tomb, Perfume River at sunset, Thieu Mu Pagoda, DMZ Tour, Dong Ha, Truong Son Cemetery, Vinh Moc Tunnels, Cua Tung Beach, Hanoi, Red River, and includes an overnight stay in a house boat on Ha Long Bay and an Anzac Day dawn service at Long Tan Cross. E-mail Carl for further details.

It's MAILBAG time!

Andrew D. writes regarding Hugh Mackay and his prissy pacifist fantasy daughter:

It must be wonderful to have a daughter who speaks like she's reading a
script you wrote. It beats having a normal daughter:

"Dad, what's a just war?"

"Not now, sweetheart, I'm busy. Can we talk later?"

"You never want to listen to me! I hate you!" (bursts into tears and slams door on way to bedroom to listen to The Smiths and write bad poetry about the unfairness of life)

Mackay is indeed a fortunate man.

His readers aren't. Judy P. wonders about Graham Greene preferring to live in the Soviet Union:

Perhaps he'd changed his mind by 1978 when his novel "The Human Factor" was published. The hero ended miserably & hopelessly in a bleak & cold Moscow, while his wife/mistress remained in US because those mean & nasty Russians wouldn't bring her.

Richard G. identifies the two primary Michael Leunig cartoons:

Firstly, the ones that portray Australians/Americans/Westerners as evil people/terrorists/etc.

Then there are the completely incomprehensible, fluffy, "feel-good", just plain weird ones with "storylines" which lead nowhere. The one below took me about 30 seconds to think up; you'll have to use your imagination for the pictures:

1. There once was a flower in a meadow.

2. One day the flower decided to leave, and floated up into the sky.

3. It floated all the way to the Sun, and touched it.

4. Then it returned to the Earth, and to its old meadow.

5. Today, it looks just like all the other flowers, but it is the only one that has touched the Sun.

Photoshoppers, make Richard's cartoon come true. Here's your complete Michael Leunig resource guide. The great Terry Oglesby seeks to correct "the maroon who said 'Next shuttle, how bout sending up a Jew and a Palestinian together, instead of arrogantly slapping a lot of people in the face at this time of Arab bashing by sending up a zionist'":

It might be good to point out to this particular sack of crap that an Arab has already flown on the Shuttle, STS-51G, back in 1985.

Peter B. alerts the planet to the existence of a eucalyptus activist who is outraged over old women who feed non-native foodstuffs to budgerigars. The bad foreign food, it angers the birds! California's Polly Bolton has found her way on to the Lord Mayor of Brisbane's suck-o-rama peacefest mailing list, and is now invited to an anti-war rally on February 16. She can't make it, Mr. Lord Mayor! And, by the way, she's pro-war!

Maybe some of your readers can attend and report back. He says he's looking forward to seeing me at the rally, so if you know anyone who will attend, please ask him/her to tell the Lord Mayor that Polly says "Hey."

Many were intrigued by peace nudist Grace Knight's revisionist historical claim: "I don't believe Australia has ever invaded a country before, and to do it on the back of George Bush terrifies me."

Writes Kev M.:

17 Dec 1941, Australian and Dutch troops invaded neutral Portuguese Timor.

Does this woman do ANY research?

And from Rex D.:

It seems we have here an activist who is unaware of the Gallipoli campaign …

Michael G.:

Is it possible that she was away the day they did Australian History at school or is she just a slow learner? Sorry, silly question. I wonder if she has ever heard of Gallipoli. Other places that spring to mind include Korea, Vietnam and East Timor.

Peter B.:

I'm sure the Turks would have some comments about a little place called Gallipolli. For that matter the operations of the Light Horse could be construed as an invasion as well considering Sinai and Palestine were parts of the Turkish Empire at the time.

Alex Bensky hopes for a positive outcome from all of this rampant peace nudism:

Some of your Aussie women look pretty good ... maybe you can get some of the beach girls to get involved in the peace movement. And how about those Norwegian nurses? I'll bet they'd like to do something for peace.

I did like the part about being unable to back up feelings with political analysis. That is painfully obvious. Hey, she said it, we didn't.

Ken P. is happy enough with things as they are:

Regardless of their brainless politics, the idea of a hillside full of naked Australian women is around #4 on my list of all time favorite fantasies! And you all made it happen! Good work!

Don't ask about fantasies #1, #2, or #3. Simon R. points out that whatever the peaceniks do,
we can do better, and Terry Ingalls has two questions:

1. Do you ever worry that by exposing Margo's scatter-brained musings to a wider world, even though you are holding them up for well-deserved ridicule, you are giving her notoriety that will perversely heighten her stature and lengthen her career?

2. Is "nakidity" really a word?

1. I have no idea what you are talking about. "Ridicule"?

2. Yes it is. I heard it on Ren and Stimpy. A reader calling himself The Rickster complains that I'm driving people to the Other Side:


I am strongly in favour of the war with Iraq but your style of argument gives us on this side a bad very name. Primarily designed to attract attention and readership, you make me (and hundreds of others no doubt), want to move very far to the left.

The thing you don't understand is that nobody takes shock jock journalists seriously as people. Their ramblings, like their morning coffee, just add a little bit of a jolt to their otherwise dull existence.

Dissenter! I will crush him! Although, as the Combustible Boy notes, that isn't always dissent's fate:

Every once in a while it's "stifled" instead. Maybe you should concoct a left-wing alter ego who can write columns in which dissent is finally something-elsed. Pounded? Bludgeoned? Nerve gassed? Scrummed into submission? Cream-pied? Fucked gently with a chainsaw?

As was my spine recently. Here's some sound advice on back pain from Dr. Keith:

Valium + wine + Brufen (anti-inflammatory) PLUS light -- repeat light -- exercise will fix it. Always does.

Trust me.

Will do, Doc. Apart from the exercise part, which sounds risky. And finally, from Julie of Los Angeles:

Thanks for your reporting on the spud missile scandal. Can I now call you the "spud stud"?

You can, but you run the risk of a copyright lawsuit from Ted Rall, the original Tuber of Kabul.