Nicholas Stuart is a columnist with the Canberra Times.
Nick Stuart has written three books,
Kevin Rudd: An Unauthorised Political Biography;
What Goes Up: Behind the 2007 Election; and
Rudd's Way: November 2007 - June 2010.
I'd been tempted to headline this yarn as "split over ISIL", or "Andrews and Abbott disagree about why we're in Iraq".
Unfortunately, although possibly justified neither of these assertions are quite true.
Defence Minister Kevin Andrews at the RUSI
When we went into Iraq Tony Abbott insisted Daesh was a "death cult".
The key point is that Andrews specifically rejected this as a reason to deploy forces.
He drew a more logical picture of why we're involved, by distinguishing between nation-states (which, implicitly, one can deal with) and other forces (operating outside the Westphalian system), as this column for the Canberra Times details . . .
There's a brilliant short passage at the beginning (p15) of Umberto Eco's book, the Name of the Rose, where the ageing Benedictine narrator puts down his feelings about the declining state of the world:
"the young no longer want to study anything, learning is in decline, the whole world walks on its head, blind men lead others equally blind and cause them to plunge into the abyss, birds leave the nest before they can fly, the jackass plays the lyre, oxen dance. Mary no longer loves the contemplative life and Martha no longer loves the active life, Leah is sterile, Rachel has a carnal eye, Cato visits brothels, Lucretius becomes a woman. Everything is on the wrong path . . ."
Norman Abjorensen kicks off his latest piece for Inside Story with a great quote:
"In his 2011 book, Chavs: The Demonization of the Working Class, Owen Jones describes how, in his final year at Oxford a decade ago, he heard a senior member of the party (widely believed to be David Cameron) speak with blunt candour at an informal gathering: “What you have to realise about the Conservative Party is that it is a coalition of privileged interests. Its main purpose is to defend that privilege. And the way it wins elections is by giving just enough to just enough other people.”