Wednesday 25 Nov 2020 | 02:53 | SYDNEY
Wednesday 25 Nov 2020 | 02:53 | SYDNEY

Email of the day: Timor empathy


Sam Roggeveen


14 February 2008 11:21

More reader reaction to Hugh White's views on the latest deployment to East Timor: 

I actually find it painful to criticise White, because I so often agree with the arguments and lines of logic that he generates. I don't doubt his logic. I just doubt his capacity for empathy. Emotional management is the key ingredient of leadership that think tanks and analysts can easily overlook.

The deployment will also dovetail well with the curfew — it will be incredibly difficult for the fugitives to move about in urban areas. It would be poor policy to allow the rebels freedom to move at will around Dili. Diplomacy is about sending messages. We need to send a clear message that attacks against the state and its key institutions are intolerable. This is a critical nation-building action. Although we are dealing with a nation that has a smaller mass than PNG, it is far more volatile. We need to send the message, through symbols — such as troop deployments — that we are serious about prioritising the needs of the Timorese.