"Suburbs off pace in ACT housing boom" (June 5) paints a picture of affordability continuing to fade into the distance for low income earners and the homeless. A PhD student studying at ANU sleeping in a tent in the front yard of a house in Melba for the past few months is a typical example of the crippling lack of any accommodation available in Canberra.
I have proposed to the Minister a site between Galilee School and McQuoid Creek, Kambah, that has power, water, sewerage, etc., adjacent that could house up to 60 fitted-out steel containers used for accommodation in Amsterdam that could be curved around the hillside. It would be wonderful even if just this once a positive response could be obtained.
I am confident that with co-operation across the board from suppliers and tradies, the project would succeed ... if approved.
Peter M Gately & Associates, Flynn
Why is he poking the dragon?
Just what is the PM hoping to achieve by his planned pro-freedom speechmaking on the outskirts of the G7 conference in Cornwall? The G7 countries will probably not take much notice. The one country that will - China - is not even a G7 member. Just how much offence can we afford to give to our most significant trading partner?
I would guess that part of the reason for all this rhetoric is that the Prime Minister has been stung by repeated jibes of the 'Scotty from marketing' variety and has decided to show he is a man of principle and values. I think I preferred the cheery pragmatist.
Poking the dragon, let alone (as some in and around the government have done) flirting with talk of war over Taiwan is not in Australia's best interests. If we have learned anything from the last 50 years, it is surely that countries are best left to sort out their problems for themselves. The last thing they need is rich democracies trying to put them right.
Dr Jenny Stewart, Torrens
When the Taliban take over after September 11, there will be a lot more people than 300 interpreters fearing for their lives.Kenneth Griffiths, O'Connor
Afghans fearing for their lives
The concern expressed for the Afghan Translators ("Safety fears grow for Afghan interpreters", June 8), does not go anywhere near to doing the right thing to assuage guilt and culpability for Australia's invasion of Afghanistan in 2001.
When the Taliban take over after September 11, there will be a lot more people than 300 interpreters fearing for their lives.
Out of a population of around 38 million, there are about 7 or 8 million Afghans in urban areas controlled by the government. Let's assume this is the cohort which will not want to wait around for the Taliban to wreak revenge on collaborators. So the allies have potentially 8 million Afghani refugees seeking help.
Let's assume that Australia's overall contribution to the invasion is 1 per cent. One percent of 8 million is 80,000. That's 80,000 Afghan refugees to be resettled in Australia before the end of 2021. Malcolm Fraser did the right thing in the 70s. We should do the right thing now.
Kenneth Griffiths, O'Connor
A return to a medieval system
It was with great pleasure that I read of CSIRO's proposed $70 million redevelopment of its Black Mountain site to help relocate its biological collections ("CSIRO pitches $70m building". June 9, p6). As a former Manager of the Australian National Insect Collection and author of 'A Rich and Diverse Fauna - The history of the Australian National Insect Collection 1926 - 1991' this seemed like a dream come true.
However, further examination of the proposal has turned the dream into a nightmare.
Presumably, in order to save money on building costs, significant parts of the insect collection, currently stored in accessible tubes of alcohol, are to be 'mothballed' and put into what will be quite inaccessible glass storage 'vats'.
This is returning the collection to the medieval system that we found ourselves in in the 1960s when we modernised the system in order to ensure the collection was accessible and research friendly.
CSIRO should immediately abandon this retrograde step and design the building to suit the collection's accessibility for research. It should not interfere with the collection to suit a lower-cost building. This would be shameful.
Murray Upton, Belconnen
Did they even read it?
The National Capital Authority (NCA) consultation has certainly been seriously defective. I put in a detailed submission to the NCA War Memorial's 'Early Works Consultation'.
I specifically included at the end of my submission that I gave them permission to make the submission public. However, after the announcement of the approval for the early works, I received an email from the NCA asking them if I approved publication of my submission.
Did they even read my submission? I doubt it.
In part, my submission stated that 'The first function of the Australian War Memorial Act 1980 (Section 5 (1) (a)) is "to maintain and develop the national memorial referred to in subsection ... as a national memorial of Australians who have died (i) on or as a result of active service; or (ii) as a result of any war or warlike operations in which Australians have been on active service;"
It is clear from this that the war memorial should retain as its essence, respect for and commemoration of our war dead, and not to 'share the experiences of Australians in conflict' (AWM website), or turn it into a war equipment and weapons museum.
A museum is a very different experience for people visiting. The commemoration of our war dead will be minimised as the function of the war memorial.
It is doubtful whether the works proposed for the AWM are legal under its governing Act.
Kathryn Kelly, Chifley
Hastie's 'Churchill moment'?
Expenditure on veterans, both past and presently serving ADF, falls broadly within the genus of Defence. With unfit, incapacitated former and current personnel, Australia's capability is weakened.
Former personnel might not (or cannot) re-enlist if needed again. As well they might be needed. The half-billion dollar expenditure on the Australian War Memorial is government delinquency at its worst.
If only some of the money had been spent on better Defence preparedness of Malaya and Singapore. The bravery of Indian, Nepalese, Australian, Malayan, and British fighting servicemen and women could not plug the holes left by British government stupidity.
The aircraft carrier sent with Repulse and Prince of Wales to Malaya may not have broken down in South Africa, en route, if properly maintained. Aircover may have saved those two ships.
The dopey, laughably (it would be if not so serious) incompetent Australian government must redirect the half a billion now to veterans. It is PM Morrison's 'Churchill' moment. Mice or Man? Should not have asked. I know what Mr Andrew Hastie's opinion would be. It can be his 'Churchill' moment.
Christopher Ryan, Watson
Surely the boats are stopped?
Roger Dace asks a simple question regarding the Biloela family (Letters, June 10): when "The next boat with illegal immigrants arrives with a family including a pregnant mother - are they also a special case?"
A simple enough question, but entirely pointless. Has Mr Dace not heard that ScoMo has stopped the boats? And has he not heard of the great Australian Border Force, created about six years ago and presumably still controlled by Messrs Morrison, Dutton and Pezzullo?
Or does he not trust those powerful gentlemen to be competent and able to do the job of keeping those irritating boats away?
Sandor Siro, Ainslie
No way to peace and stability
A 'coalition' of eight leaders, aspiring to lead Israel, trade insults and denounce each other, their parties having adopted policies that are irreconcilable on numerous critical issues. It seems likely to prevail. This is not the basis for a stable government during these volatile times.
Time will tell how long this experiment survives before the country is forced into yet another unstabilising election. Israelis and indeed the entire region deserve a government united in policy with a resolve to pursue peace and stability. This isn't the way to achieve it.
'Our God, please save Israel from all its troubles' (Psalm 25 v 23).
Angela Kueter-Luks, Bruce
Are we actually arming China?
If we are to believe the "drums of war" rhetoric being advanced by any Liberal National Party politician on speed dial today we must also consider the need to suspend iron ore sales to China.
The steel made from the iron ore is probably being used to build up the Chinese arsenal. The failure to do so merely replicates the Pig Iron Bob era with the Iron Ore Scomo Era.
Maybe the federal government can produce supply chain evidence that the steel isn't ending up in Chinese weapons production.