Alex Massie

First they take Canberra, then they take...?

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Melanie Philips, I'm afraid, continues to show signs of becoming Britain's answer to David Horowitz. Her latest salvo culminates in this absurdity:

Annapolis is America’s Munich — and Israel is the new Czechoslovakia.

Previously Philips, unsurprisingly, lamented John Howard's defeat in Australia. For myself, I rather think that 12 years in office is long enough and, absent an entirely hapless opposition, it's important to turf incumbents out of office, regardless of which party they happen to be. (It is not a good sign for Gordon Brown that Labour will have been in power for 13 years when the next election is held).

Still, none of that matters. Philips concedes that even though there were plenty of excellent reasons to vote against Howard, loyalty to the Bush Doctrine must trump each and every one of them:

Yes I know that the election result is said to have been about domestic issues rather than foreign policy. Yes I know that Kevin Rudd is much more of a centrist than the Labour party he leads. Yes I know that the Liberal party got up to some truly despicable tricks (see the excellent Andrew Bolt) and seems to be well past its sell-by date. But the gloating by the left tells you all you need to know about the way in which the defeat of Australia’s epic Prime Minister John Howard will weaken the free world in its war to defend civilisation.

This is madness. It's unwise to permit your judgment to be governed by the reactions of the sort of people who post comments at The Guardian.  But, really, is it also too much to ask that Philips provide even a teensy piece of evidence to support her conclusion that Australian voters have doomed us all? Apparently so, and all because Kevin Rudd,

ran on a platform of pulling troops out of Iraq and endorsing the ludicrous scam of man-made global warming are enough in themselves to tell the jihadis that Australia has now lost its (one-man) nerve. Australia just made itself (and the rest of us) a whole lot less safe.

Incidentally: why are the people most convinced "western civilisation" faces mortal peril from lunatic Islamic terrorists also the people most convinced that there's no such thing as global warming at all and, consequently, all the forecasts of planetary meltdown are just another trap the careful westerner must be wary of avoiding? Where are the people who believe in a civilisational death-struggle and the imminent threat of global climate change? Or is it that no human brain can survive the presence of two apocalyptic fantasies without short-circuiting itself, leaving it's owner a hopping, bug-eyed loon?

Who knew that it's impossible to think that climate change and terrorism are each serious problems that left unchecked could leave us in a spot of bother but that, if addressed, need not portend the end of the world?

Of course, I dare say that for every person convinced global warming is a man-made scam designed to undermine the west, there's an eco-clown convinced that Bush (and Cheney) ordered the 9/11 attacks to have their War for Oil and do their best to melt the icebergs and chop down every tree in the world.

Written byAlex Massie

Alex Massie is Scotland Editor of The Spectator. He also writes a column for The Times and is a regular contributor to the Scottish Daily Mail, The Scotsman and other publications.

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