I am often baffled by the hard Left in this country, yet I have never and will never understand the groundswell of support for David Hicks.
Last week, Hicks, unsurprisingly, had his charge of providing material support for terrorism dropped. It was ruled that his guilty plea was made under duress and extreme extraordinary circumstances, and thus invalid. This I understand. Perhaps there was no hard evidence to pin on him, and it is fair that the original charge be dropped given the nature of the plea deal.
It is also fair to argue that nobody should be tortured or incarcerated for five years without a trial. The rule of law and the right to a trial is one of the fundamental principles of Western Democracy, and in Hicks’ case there is little doubt that he did not benefit from this right. This too, is understandable. Although it should be noted that his world view saw Western values as evil.
Yet worryingly, over the years supporters of Hicks have willingly overlooked the circumstances surrounding his capture and they are seemingly happy to forgive his allegiance to an ideology that’s anathema to human rights.
There was Greens Leader, Christine Milne, bellowing that Hicks deserved an apology from the Australian government. The Greens have curiously sympathised with Hicks for a long time, offering him unconditional empathy despite the fact that he allegedly fought with the Taliban, a regime marked for its misogyny and homophobia. Greens Senator, Sarah Hanson-Young, once gave us this on Twitter, elevating Hicks to the status of noble hero.
Labor leader, Bill Shorten, while stopping short of pushing for an apology, also offered his sympathies to Hicks by declaring that an injustice had been done to him. The sympathy for this man from our parties of the Left is baffling, and offensive to our national character.
Guantanamo Bay aside, let’s look at the track record of David Hicks, and you decide if he deserves anything at all from us:
– Allegedly trained and fought with al-Qaeda;
– Allegedly trained with the Pakistani terrorist group Lashkar-e-taiba and fought against Indian forces in Kashmir;…
– In a notebook he kept at the time he wrote that guerrilla warfare involved “sacrifice for Allah”;
– In a letter to his mum written from Afghanistan he wrote that “As a Muslim…my responsibility is to protect my brothers from aggressive non-believers”;
– In another letter he boasted about meeting Osama bin-Laden and called him a “lovely brother”.
– Wrote a letter to his former flatmate, Louise Fletcher, requesting the following:
“LISTEN, have you got any friends I can f— when I get home? They have to be good-looking and I prefer big tits as well. Well, send their photos with the letters so I can check them out …”
– Was caught by the Northern Alliance in 2001, a group fighting against the Taliban in Afghanistan.
– Studied ‘Wahabism’ – a branch of Islamist ideology that is fundamental, ultraconservative and austere.
Hicks is no human rights champion. He is no saint. Yet that didn’t stop supporters giving him a standing ovation when he released his book in 2010. That hasn’t stopped thousands of people elevating the man to the status of brave hero in the face of adversity.
How curious that a man who clearly pledged his youth to violence and war is so loved by pacifists and peace activists championing human rights.
This man allegedly pledged his loyalty to groups marked with the brush of misogyny, homophobia, and violence against ‘unbelievers.’ It is honestly mind boggling that Hicks’ loudest supporters willingly forget what this man stood for. They spend their time raging against a man like Tony Abbott for making unfortunate gaffes, yet throw their weight behind a man who fought for the antithesis of equality and liberty.
The only conclusion I can draw is that Hicks draws support from such people because he is the enemy of the enemy. He actively opposed the United States and he questioned the West. He echoed some of their most repeated sentiments, and tribal loyalty trumps everything else.
David Hicks deserves nothing from us. He doesn’t deserve our sympathy, nor does he deserve the support of thousands of fools in this country. And he most certainly does not deserve compensation or an apology.