If the Bush administration did something like this, there would be no end of caterwauling about it.

MEET Australia’s latest weapons in the war on terror – a florist, shop assistant and a publican.

The frontline of the fight against terrorism just got a whole lot closer to home, with police recruiting shopkeepers and businesses to be the eyes and ears of the community.

The country’s biggest counter-terrorism initiative – secureNSW – is being rolled out across the state.

Businesses on tourist strips, bars, restaurants, hotels, transport hubs and shopping centres – the sort of places targeted by terrorists overseas – are being asked to be on guard and report anything suspicious.

The aim is to raise awareness of the terrorist threat as police work with businesses to develop security, making the community less vulnerable to attack and saving lives.

If I didn’t know better, I’d think that the Australians have bought into all that BushCo nonsense that there’s an actual terrorism threat out there. How long before Naomi Wolf writes a book about Australia’s creeping fascism?

Emmanuel Theoharis, who has run the Eddy Avenue Florist at Central Railway Station for 37 years, is happy to be part of the plan.

“The police do a good job but they can’t be everywhere,” he said.

Chickenhawk!

Tags: terrorism