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Vice Blog

SYDNEY - ANGRY AUSTRALIANS

January 24, 2007, 1:43pm

Does anyone else get the feeling that something really heavy is about to go down in Australia between the people that grew here and the people that flew here? Ever since the 2005 Cronulla beach riots between the Middle Easterners and the Aussies (where crowds were recruited via text messages saying: "This Sunday every Aussie get down to North Cronulla to support Leb and wog bashing day"), both sides have been going to greater and more creative lengths to piss each other off.

Now there's Lebanese gangs making frighteningly antagonistic rap videos and people arguing over whether we should be allowed to take flags into the Big Day Out festivals for fear of fueling racist fires. We spoke to our Lebanese friend, Mack, to see whether he had any answers.

VICE: So what do you see happening next? Is there any way the situation between can be diffused?
Mack: They are both impossible questions to answer. The situation is unpredictable. For instance, if you had spoken to people a lot more knowledgeable about this than me last year, I'm sure they would have anticipated way more violence on the first anniversary of the Cronulla riots but as it turned out, it was reasonably quiet. Fights are likely to erupt without much, if any, advance warning. There's a lot of very deeply rooted anger which is going to need to be vented somehow but there's no way anyone can know precisely how it will manifest itself before the fact. Sorry.