media release

Health more important than security

Health more important than security


The Australia Anti-Bases Campaign (AABC) totally rejects Foreign Minister Marise Payne’s recent statement that the US should maintain its concerns about security in the Pacific at this time of crisis over the coronavirus pandemic.

AABC spokesman Denis Doherty said: “Instead we call on the Australian Government to immediately take the following steps to ensure the health security of the Australian people.

  1. All US personnel travelling to Pine Gap and other US military facilities be refused entry to Australia if they arrive after Monday 16th
  2. Immediately order US Marines out of Darwin.
  3. Cancel all military exercises to be held in Australia especially those which invite foreign military personnel into the country.
  4. Cancel all participation of Australian military forces in exercises in other countries with other militaries.
  5. Withdraw all Australian Defence Personnel from conflict areas and bring those people home safely.
  6. Cancel all contracts that can be cancelled until after the pandemic.

“The time is ripe for Australia to reduce immediately its military spending and to divert the savings to funding the Australian people in their hour of need.

“Divert the savings into health services, doubling the Newstart allowance and to increasing the aid budget for poor countries who need extra assistance in dealing with covid-19,” Mr Doherty said.

“For the Government and Opposition to persist with the present military budget of $34 billion in a time of a pandemic shows a warped sense of values.  Giving priority to killing people in other lands rather than looking after the health of Australians is unacceptable.

“The very essence of the Government role is to protect all our people, not to spend up big to please the US Trump administration.

“Divert military spending to protect our people and the lives of poor people in our region,” Mr Doherty concluded.

As Tim Costello, formerly of World Vision, said: ‘There is always money for guns never for aid.” How about the Government proving him wrong?

For more information:

Denis Doherty

0418 290 663