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Herald Sun, June 3, 2011

Most Aussies sick of the Afghanistan cost, saying we are fighting a losing battle

"Both Australians and Americans are clearly sick and tired after the 9/11 decade of war," Prof. Garret said.

By Matt Johnston

Australian Special Forces soldiers in Afghanistan
Australian Special Forces soldiers in Afghanistan. (Picture: Supplied Source: Supplied)

ALMOST 10 years after September 11, most Australians think the war on terror is endless and will not be worth the cost. A survey by the US Studies Centre in Sydney shows 63 per cent of Australians see no end in sight.

Only one in five Australians thinks the war, including battles in Afghanistan and Iraq, is being won, compared with almost one in three Americans.

The news comes as the search for the Afghan soldier who killed Australian Lance-Corporal Andrew Jones continues.

The US Studies Centre asked 2200 Australians and 900 Americans a series of questions about the war on terror last month - after the killing of Osama bin Laden.

Centre chief executive Geoffrey Garret will release the results today but said they showed there was "war on terror fatigue".

"Both Australians and Americans are clearly sick and tired after the 9/11 decade of war," Prof. Garret said.

Only 57 per cent of respondents thought the war on terror, including the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, would be worth the cost.

The poll also showed a third of Australians rated the economy as the most pressing issue for Australians, compared with 4 per cent who rated terrorism as the No.1 concern.

The second most pressing issue was immigration.

However, almost 40 per cent of people thought the chance of a terrorist attack was "somewhat likely".

And many people continued to pick 9/11 as the most important event from a list of historical events.

The results come after Australia's leaders repeatedly vowed to stay the course in Afghanistan, even after a spate of Australian soldier deaths.

Lance-Cpl Jones, 25, was one of the latest casualties after he was shot by an Afghan soldier.

Checkpoints have been set up and compounds where his killer might hide are being searched.

Major-General Michael Krause said if a suspect was found, his identity could be checked biometrically.

Major-Gen. Krause said the attack on Lance-Cpl Jones was a sign of desperation.

"We have some bad days here, there's no doubt about it. But we have more good days than bad days."

Category: US-NATO, HR Violations, Protest - Views: 11797


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