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Defence Force on Afghanistan, cluster bombs and Wikileaks

FADT Committee 30 May 2011

Senator LUDLAM: This question relates specifically to DMO because I presume you are the ones procuring or finding cluster munitions. Can you confirm for us that Defence wants to be able to purchase and retain live cluster munitions for training and I presume disarmament purposes?

CHAIR: That is a Defence question.

Senator LUDLAM: If that is the case, is it something you have been asked to procure, provide or locate?

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Cluster Munitions

NOTICE OF MOTION General Business No. 246
12 May 2011

Senator LUDLAM:  This motion relates to the Convention on Cluster Munitions, which Australia is proposing to sign. It is a good convention. It has been negotiated in international forums over many, many years, and Australia is about to make an extraordinary mistake in enacting the provisions of the convention in domestic law in ways we think were carelessly drafted and very badly thought through.

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Cluster Bombs - Adjournment Speech

Senator LUDLAM (Western Australia) (19:29): On 17 January 2008, a two-year-old child, Dokthjan Saynaydet, was playing with his brother and seven other boys in their home town in Laos. They chanced upon an unexploded cluster submunition, or bomblet, left over from the years of fighting that ravaged their country. The war was long over, but this relic remained. The submunition exploded, killing the child's brother and three of the other boys, leaving him and four other bloodied children screaming in pain and terror from shrapnel injuries.

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The future, eventually, will find you out

"It is becoming unprecedentedly difficult for anyone, anyone at all, to keep a secret. In the age of the leak and the blog, of evidence extraction and link discovery, truths will either out or be outed, later if not sooner.

"This is something I would bring to the attention of every diplomat, politician and corporate leader: the future, eventually, will find you out. The future, wielding unimaginable tools of transparency, will have its way with you. In the end, you will be seen to have done that which you did."

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The future, eventually, will find you out

"It is becoming unprecedentedly difficult for anyone, anyone at all, to keep a secret. In the age of the leak and the blog, of evidence extraction and link discovery, truths will either out or be outed, later if not sooner."

"This is something I would bring to the attention of every diplomat, politician and corporate leader: the future, eventually, will find you out. The future, wielding unimaginable tools of transparency, will have its way with you. In the end, you will be seen to have done that which you did."

~ William Gibson, "The Road to Oceania", 2003

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Afghanistan debate

I rise to add some comments, and it is perhaps appropriate that I follow Senator Cameron, whose contribution I think was a valuable one. We are having this debate today whereas in my view it should have been had nine years ago when this country first committed troops to Afghanistan. We are here to clean up the consequences of the former government's reckless and indefinite commitment to an unwinnable war of doubtful motivation in Afghanistan.

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Lesson of Afghanistan and Iraq: Only Parliament Should Have The Power To Declare War

The Australian Greens used the Afghanistan war debate today to strengthen their call for Parliament to be given the power to declare war.

The Greens believe the power to send Australian forces to war should rest in the hands of Parliament," Senator Scott Ludlam told the Senate today. "The former Government's reckless and indefinite commitment to an unwinnable war in Afghanistan is a stark reminder of the need for Parliament, as the body in which the will of the people is invested, to decide upon the deployment of the nation's defence forces."

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Australian troops on charges in Afghanistan

FOREIGN AFFAIRS, DEFENCE AND TRADE LEGISLATION COMMITTEE
TUESDAY, 19 OCTOBER 2010
Department of Defence

Senator LUDLAM-Are we still on the opening statement?

CHAIR-We are on opening statements but we will continue with the discussion relating to the three soldiers in Afghanistan and exhaust that.

Senator LUDLAM-I have one question.

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