What would possess Mark Kenny to refer to our current Prime Minister as "doughty" ("War in Europe is a numbers game", canberratimes.com.au, March 6).
"Doughty" is Lady Grantham on Downton Abbey, as played by Maggie Smith, with her crushing put downs of her son, her daughter-in-law and others: she cares not the hurt rendered but has her say: she is invincible, never giving an inch or an apology.
Doughty is many Australian farmers in the face of years of drought: they push on, investing yet more money in planting crops, spending money to put fuel in tractors, buying seed to plant in dry paddocks hoping for rain and after a year with no crop success starting again in the next cycle, apparently undaunted.
Doughty is applied to a determined battler; valiant fighters who go beyond mere courage to keep fighting a battle. It is not to be confused with the stubborn who cannot accept their defeat. A moment of supreme courage, risking life to save a fellow soldier is probably not doughty, as it may not be a feature of every week, although supremely brave.
Battling for years can involve a valiant effort to maintain the fight with courage and determination: maintaining the inner grit to keep going with pride and patience is probably a doughty effort from a farmer, or a soldier seeking recognition for fellow soldiers against an intransigent bureaucracy.
It is not doughty to fight a political battle and refuse to give in; to expect one's mastery of marketing spin to win loyalty from part of the audience; to win against an intrusive press by ignoring questions; while maintaining party room discipline by locking out leadership challenges. Calling this effort doughty is marketing spin and a huge undeserved compliment.
The February 28 edition of The Canberra Times published the results of an Australian Community Media survey of readers' most important concerns in the run-up to the May federal election. Environment and climate change were voted number one, by a wide margin.
Perhaps coincidentally, Keith Hill (Letters, February 28) discussed the "end of coal". Burning of thermal coal for heating and industry began the process of global warming at the onset of the Industrial Revolution, and has ever since been the main driver of what many scientists now call global heating.
Mr Hill noted that "power companies are leading the march away from coal". He could also have mentioned that some of the world's largest fossil companies have joined the power companies in moving away from coal; yesterday's fuel.
Given the current problems in Lismore and Queensland why are councils allowing people to people to build on and live in flood plains? And why aren't the councils putting in place water diversions such as building up the size of the walls of the dams, putting in place pipes which would pipe out the water to the most arid parts of our country? Is it because of costs?
It's about time Queensland and northern NSW put their money out there and work out the costs against the cost of recoveries.
It has been happening for over 60 years, it's a no brainer, isn't it councillors?
Prime Minister, a wall of water has just flooded Brisbane and Lismore, continuing a pattern of natural disasters - droughts, bushfires, wild weather - that has wrought havoc across the country in recent years.
It's all about the changing climate, PM. Scientists have been predicting this for decades.
When will you revise the 2030 emission targets as you pledged to do in Glasgow last year?
When will we see the new numbers, PM?
It seems like we are transitioning from one pandemic to another; from a global health pandemic of fear, panic, illness and death to a geo-political pandemic of similar fear and panic but more so of power, arrogance, corruption and perceived entitlement.
We have our ancient biblical analogies to refer to for the consequences of the actions of errant states and civilisations.
Perhaps some divine intervention is what the world really needs right now because heaven knows, we are not doing a very good job of it ourselves.
The role of the United Nations' Security Council includes promoting peace and providing leadership. So why can a permanent member (and current chair) declare war on, and invade, a sovereign state without Council support?
Logic suggests that the Security Council charter should invoke automatic suspension of council membership for this action. This would be the minimum requirement to preserve Security Council relevance and any semblance of leadership.
Might this have prevented the war in Iraq, or this war? It would at least demonstrate Security Council commitment to promoting peace and provide greater flexibility to negotiate for that outcome.
In 1918 Germany lost some of its territory. In 1939 Hitler invaded Poland and started World War II. In 1991 Russia was similarly humiliated when it lost control of several countries in eastern Europe, including some which had been part of the Soviet Union. In 2022 Putin invaded Ukraine. Is this the start of World War III? If it is, it will presumably end with the integration of Russia into Europe, as has been the case with Germany since 1945.
Incredibly, the Russians have forgotten about Stalingrad 1942 where Soviet soldiers, in a battle of attrition, fought off a vastly superior Nazi military machine. Two million people were killed.
Why do they think that the Ukrainian soldiers and civilians won't fight just as hard to defend their land? They will. At Stalingrad the US supplied food to the people of Stalingrad. Ordinary Australians can support the Ukraine by donating to the Red Cross Ukraine Crisis Fund - it all helps.
Sue Wareham is right; militarism and its hypocritical, grandstanding boosters have brought the world to a precipice.
Depraved warmongering brought on the invasion of Ukraine and will likely prolong dreadful, grinding, futile conflict at the very moment the IPCC screams for concerted action to prevent further heating of the planet.
War used to be good for a few - bloated profits and egos paid for by faceless others hunkered down in some backwater or other - but now the cost is huge and on us all.
War can't stop a global catastrophe but it can make it inevitable.
Media reporting of Russia's invasion of the Ukraine gave me a distinct feeling of déjà vu. Where had I seen media reports of missiles exploding and military hardware moving before?
Then I remembered: Baghdad 2003; to a lesser extent, Kabul 2001; Haiti 1994 and Vietnam in the 1960s.
Like the Russian invasion of Ukraine, none of these earlier invasions were endorsed by the international community and, like the current Ukraine invasion, these invasions were led by a dominant nation for spurious secular or ideological reasons such as alleged weapons of mass destruction, anti-communism and concerns over "human rights".
Estimates of the number of civilians that died as a direct result of these earlier invasions are tragic; 500,000 in Iraq, 46,000 in Afghanistan and 620,000 in Vietnam. I pray that Ukraine does not suffer a similar casualty list. Yet, one does not get the same feeling of déjà vu in the media reporting. Unlike the Ukraine invasion, Europe and other western nations did not hold hands for the wellbeing of Iraqis.
It is often quoted that the first casualty when war comes is truth. However, it is the innate prejudice that is the disease that befalls all during conflicts. The discordant reactions to different invading forces over the last several decades acutely demonstrates the symptoms of this affliction. Putin is just as culpable as leaders of other invading nations. Or are ethics, and the value of dead civilians, applied differently?
The biggest mistake that Western Europe made in relation to Russia was to not abolish NATO when the USSR collapsed in 1991.
I am opposed to Putin's invasion of Ukraine. However NATO has been antagonising Russia by pointing nuclear weapons at them post USSR. This is a cold war strategy.
If the West truly wants peace, agree to abolish NATO and have Putin withdraw from Ukraine. This would be a huge step towards peace.
It's comforting to know there are still some tax breaks in poor besieged Ukraine. The National Agency on Corruption Prevention has stated that captured Russian tanks and equipment do not need to be declared to tax authorities; war trophies are not taxable.
Russia is interfering in our election. By invading Ukraine Putin has taken the attention of the media away from the government's incompetence and loose moral standards. The government clearly delights in its opportunity to display bellicosity towards a perceived foreign threat and to play the supposed better-at-national security card.
So we wring our hands about the latest war in Europe (remember Kosovo/Serbia)? Australia should focus on contributing to peace in our own Indo-Pacific region and showing leadership in battling climate-change disasters. If we don't we'll have a new motto: "another flood, bushfire, or tourist collapse, anyone?"
If Putin hasn't won by now then he isn't going to. The spring thaw is here.
The postponement of an American long range missile test from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California is intelligent under the circumstances.
Senator Seselja is increasingly shrill as he attacks anyone who challenges his senate sinecure. The key question that was not addressed in the recent article ("Climate 200 promotes doctored post attacking Seselja", The Canberra Times, March 3, page 7) is: "Does the Senator support the waste of $31 million of public money in an advertising campaign championing the renewable energy credentials of the coal hugging government of which he is a part?"
I must congratulate Victor Diskordia on his masterful letter epistle (Letters, March 3). To write about the situation in Ukraine without using the words "Putin" or "invasion" takes real skill.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has had a revelation. The deadly floods in Queensland and New South Wales are due to climate change. But her government has allowed the huge Adani coal mine to fuel more killer floods, cyclones and fires. How can this continue?
Christopher Smith (Letters, March 7) talks about oil and gas in the Timor Sea. Evidently he doesn't understand how these resources are supposed to be shared amongst nations. Yes, John Howard did drive the independence of East Timor (the only good thing from his Prime Ministership) and we did not benefit financially. Is that why his government bugged Timor Leste's offices? Were we sore about the cost of freeing an emerging nation state?
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.