@25 Maggie is right, the Australian Army have been rolling into …

Comment on Pilger’s polemic fails Australia and Aborigines by Robert Borgas.

Maggie is right, the Australian Army have been rolling into Indigenous communities for years. When I was managing a community in SA called Oak Valley, the army were there for three months in 1999. They built roads, an airstrip, and other essential infrastructure. The community were very happy to have them there.
I also worked with Maggie (Hi Maggie!) back in the early 90s in another SA community called Yalata, dealing with alcohol issues.
I think Maggie did much to encourage the local people to come up with their own ways of dealing with the ‘grog’ problem.
In many ways they were quite successful. But their solutions usually needed to be backed up by more powerful authorities (usually police and the law) because these people are often quite powerless in their community to tackle these problems alone.
A similar approach is needed today to tackle the ‘drug’ problem. The big challenge with drugs is the relatively lucrative ‘black market’ economy that drugs create on communities.
Some locals are involved in the trade, even the leaders or members of their family. This is why police are usually powerless to do much about it – too many are either using or dealing, so no one wants to complain to the police.
Drugs are also much harder to discover than grog. Sniffer dogs could be brought in more regularly, but imagine the outrage from people like John Pilger! And imagine how the dealers would use Pilger’s rhetoric to justify the deprivation of their rights!
However, as Dave Price points out above, how many more teenagers do we have to lose to the mind altering side effects and resultant suicides that seem to be associated with young people taking these drugs?

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