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Bali Loss of Life and S11

Current estimated losses of lives of Australians in the October 12 2002 terrorist bombing in Bali is estimated at 103 or 5.4 per million Australian population. The loss of life in the September 11 2001 terrorist attacks was 2,814 of which 2,155 were US born representing 7.4 per million USA population. Understandably the events have caused similarly widespread feelings of grief across communities of each country.

Thus far, the Australian reaction from public figures is more subdued and thoughtful and less nationalistically vengeful than that in the US following S11. "Powerful" nations are really powerless against isolated terrorists. The real power lies with religious leaders whose silence leads to tacit approval of enmity against other cultures. Until religion separates itself from and condems such actions it will not be easy to deny extremists the resources to commit such atrocities. In the absence of this, isolationist return of cultures to within home borders and increased border security appears the only safe response and comes at a financial cost to all countries in reduced economic activity.

Posted Saturday, 19 October 2002

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