PUBLISHED : Saturday, 23 September, 1995, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 23 September, 1995, 12:00am

I REFER to the letter headlined, 'Australia being hypocritical' (South China Morning Post, September 20).

I found the letter offensive, and the idea of linking the nuclear tests in the South Pacific with the welfare of Australian aborigines both ridiculous and indecent. It is time for the French to face the truth. Nobody is really disputing whether or not France needs a nuclear deterrent.

The issue is: if the nuclear tests are as safe as the French claim, they should be conducted under the Eiffel Tower, not in Australia's or New Zealand's backyard. If they are not safe, they should not be conducted anywhere. Carrying out these tests in the South Pacific means that 19th century style colonialism is still alive and well in France today.

That letter also said, ' . . . If France is threatened, who will die for us? Certainly not a country on the other side of the planet . . . ' Thousands of Australian and New Zealand soldiers perished on French soil during World War I, in the course of defending France. And what is the French Government doing to repay them? Eight bombs. Maybe that is the French way.