Burke suggests that security issues cannot be solved without thorough making up of measures to tackle the issues. Otherwise, it may cause opposite effect, though propaganda may guarantee an approving public opinion.
The anxiety about the security issues arose in Australia after the 9/11 terror hijacking attack in New York and bombing in London in 2005. The Attorney General, Philip Ruddock, emphasized the necessity of crackdown measures on the immigrant and asylum legislation. The government had to adopt “harsher penalties for inciting terrorism and longer detention for terror suspects … including granting police wider powers to arrest and detain suspects” (Burke 121). Gradually, the new course of security policy led to totalizing of the state power and mass infringements of human rights in the sake of protection of the indigenous people.
The first group of people that suffered from the new security provision course was the asylum seekers. For instance, “flows of boat-people” from Indonesia (130) were intercepted by Australian navies and the asylum-seekers were sent back. Consequently, the governmental propaganda stigmatized them with the image of offenders striving to break the national defense system and harm the citizens. Therefore, many of them were “deported to the refugee camps” and underwent “clear violations of … international and human rights.” The “detention camps were abundant with suicides, mental illnesses, self-harm, and conflicts.” Even the citizens suffered from the increased powers of the intelligence and defense services.
Besides, though Australia did not suffer from terror attacks, its government joined the anti-terror global struggle by implementing necessary preventive legislation. The preventive measures were aimed at Muslim immigrants first, who were believed to be the most probable potential Islamic terrorists. Besides, the very Muslim communities were viewed as potential producers of terror suspects because of the involvement of the Australian Army in the Iraqi campaign (123). The war in Iraq, which started after false allegations in possession of mass destruction weapons, did not have moral and political justification. Therefore, the government was afraid of the communities that were numerous in Australia and Indonesia and were believed to be able to revenge for the ungrounded military operation.
Furthermore, the paranoid Iraqi conflict had gruesome consequences to the security of the entire world, as some nations, feeling unprotected, started to develop their own nuclear programs. Thus, Burke claims, both Iran and North Korea put the “Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (1968) in jeopardy.” (132) Moreover, the behavior of the North Korean authorities caused a chain reaction that could result in the North Asian “arms race” and endanger peace of Southeast Asia too.
Australian national security suffered from involvement into the global anti-terror war. On the one hand, it was a necessary measure the government took to support the allies. On the other hand, the “hunt for enemies” shook Islamic communities and made them possible sources of terrorism. Finally, the security measures were accompanied by numerous infringements of human rights and the mistaken Iraqi campaign caused disturbance and “arms race” in Asia.