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An Australian Nationalist Perspective of History – “Recollections of a Bleeding Heart” – Don Watson

March 15th, 2012 · No Comments · Australian Labor Party, Colonialism, History, Politics, War, WW2

Hewson’s reaction to what Keating believed was a perfectly proper speech to the Queen had touched a nerve. It was a deep insult, and almost certainly intensified by the press reaction to Annita’s missing curtsy. And it probably awoke another half-buried memory, that of his father’s brother who had been captured at the fall of Singapore and murdered on the Sandakan death marches. He berated the Opposition.

“I was told I did not learn respect at school. I learned one thing: I learned about self-respect and self-regard for Australia [this much had been agreed upon—the rest was entirely unexpected]—not about some cultural cringe to a country which decided not to defend the Malayan peninsula, not to worry about Singapore, and not to give us our troops back to keep ourselves free from Japanese domination. This was the country that you people wedded yourselves to, and even as it walked out on you and joined the Common Market, you were still looking for your MBEs and your knighthoods, and all the rest of the regalia that comes with it.”

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