Some are sick of the mantras of ANZAC and mateship, while others believe worship of soldiers is inappropriate in an era when we’re still at war in Afghanistan. Are we becoming warmongers – or recognising the sacrifice of our defence personnel?
For the proposition:
· Professor Marilyn Lake – historian and author of What’s Wrong with Anzac
· Graham Wilson – formerly of the Australian Army and Department of Defence, now a historian and writer
· Jeff Sparrow – writer and editor of Overland
Against the proposition:
· Dr Brendan Nelson – director of the Australian War Memorial and former ambassador and politician
· John Martinkus – conflict zone journalist and cinematographer
Tweet at this event: #iq2oz
Dr Simon Longstaff is Executive Director of St James Ethics Centre and chairs the Intelligence Squared debates in Sydney and Melbourne.
Dr Brendan Nelson became director of the Australian War Memorial in December 2012. Prior to this, he was the Australian ambassador to Belgium, Luxembourg, the European Union and NATO (2009–12). Apart from overseeing a major transformation in Australia’s relationships with the European Union and NATO, Dr Nelson forged deep links with the communities of Flanders, where almost 13,000 Australians lost their lives during World War I.
Jeff Sparrow is the editor of the literary journal Overland. His recent books include Money Shot (Scribe) and (edited with Antony Loewenstein) Left Turn (MUP).
Marilyn Lake is a leading Australian historian with a national and international profile. She have been researching the impact of war on Australian society for 30 years, the subject of both her MA and PhD thesis.
John Martinkus has covered conflicts since 1995 in East Timor, Iraq, Afghanistan, Aceh, Sri Lanka and Burma for print and from 2004 to 2008 for SBS Dateline. He has published three non fiction accounts of the conflicts in East Timor, Aceh and Iraq and a Quarterly Essay on West Papua.
Graham Wilson served 26 years in the Australian Army, followed by 14 years in the Department of Defence. Retired since 2011, he is now a full time historian, researcher and writer. (rodneyvc)