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Attorney-General George Brandis has introduced laws that cast a blanket of secrecy over the use and potential abuse of sweeping national security powers. AAP/Lukas Coch

National security gags on media force us to trust state will do no wrong

It has been said that the line between good investigative reporting and inappropriate journalistic prying is never clearly drawn. Journalists usually complain long and hard when governments intervene to…
The new laws would make it easier for authorities to prevent people fighting in foreign conflicts, as happened to this man arrested in December for allegedly attempting to travel to Syria. AAP/Australian Federal Police

Bill targets foreign fighters before departure and after return

The Abbott government has today introduced the second tranche of its national security amendments – the Counter-Terrorism Legislation Amendment (Foreign Fighters) Bill 2014 – into the Senate. As its name…
The ultimate test of success of raids such as last week’s is whether those charged can be deradicalised so they do not present a threat after the justice system has dealt with them. EPA/NSW Police

It’s far too early to declare counter-terrorism operations a success

The dust is settling after the extensive police raids across Sydney and Brisbane last week. Authorities say this was the largest counter-terrorism operation in Australia’s history. Not only was it the…
So broad is the amendment bill’s definition of computer that a warrant could arguably give ASIO access to all computers connected via the internet. AAP/Dan Peled

Sweeping security law would have computer users surrender privacy

Parliament is about to consider a range of changes to Australia’s security laws introduced by the Abbott government during its last sitting. The most controversial measures in the National Security Legislation…
Tony Abbott has deployed his senior ministers, including Julie Bishop and George Brandis, to get out the government’s anti-terrorism message. AAP/Lukas Coch

First rule of fighting terrorists: don’t do their job for them

It appears that Australia might be put on a higher threat alert level. ASIO director-general David Irvine’s comments on a possible increase in the terrorism threat level (which came into force in 2003…

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