A view from America. This blogger gets the picture, and the comments are interesting. Following is an excerpt:
"Despite Australia's long history of multiculturalism -- like America, it's a melting pot, albeit a smaller one -- racism is alive and well. This is partly because the Australian public, in particular the white majority, is insufficiently informed -- some might say deliberately kept in the dark -- to be able to discern the difference between Muslims and potential terrorists. Between Al Quaida and Islam. Or between terrorism and sedition, a word many Australians have never even heard of. Language has been calculatingly chosen by the government -- "illegal immigrants," for example, versus "asylum seekers" -- to intentionally foster misunderstanding and feed racial prejudice. Howard is now harvesting the fruits of his labor to hasten the passing of punitive anti-terrorism legislation that authorizes "control orders" such as house arrest, preventative detention for 14 days, and electronic tracking devices attached to suspects. Similarly draconian anti-sedition legislation is proposed. So much for the protection of civil liberties and freedom of expression. This is Australia's version of the Patriot Act."