A major part of Abbott’s rhetoric leading up to the Federal election was to that he would turn back the boats. In a rebuke that has not gone unnoticed by the rest of the world Indonesian has told Abbott, in a most emphatic manner that they, not Australia would determine Indonesia’s foreign policy.
Abbott was told this very politely during the election campaign but he ignored it. Now Indonesia has told Australia that it is not accepting refugee back once they have left Indonesian waters and Abbott has to get used to the idea. As a result that policy now lies in tatters.
It may well have been that this policy was never a serious policy in the first place. It could have been just part of the propaganda war raged against Labour. But whatever the reason for the policy today’s announcement of a trip to Indonesia by Abbott before the end of the month smacks of panic.
Abbott has done another swift change in policy change. He is now no longer going to stop the boats, he just will not tell us when they arrive. This policy has potential for great evil. Refugees arriving in Australia are just going to disappear. This is a policy that many dictators have used. Inconvenient people just disappear. This must never happen in Australia.Australia’s treatment of refuges is already seen as disgusting at home and abroad and we must not add to this by making them dissapear.
At present, all asylum seekers arriving by boat are automatically resettled in Papua New Guinea or the tiny Pacific island state of Nauru in an offshore processing model condemned by the UN, and described by the former prime minister of Australia, Malcolm Fraser, as shifting humans to gulags in the third world.
Things looks likely to get worse under the new Abbott government. Scott Morrison, the next immigration minister, indicated that the public may not even be informed when a boat carrying asylum seekers attempts arrival in Australia.
What is mostly lacking in reporting around asylum issues in Australia are the voices of asylum seekers themselves – this despite some forensic reporting that runs against the tide. Any attempt at rebalancing the narrative, however bold and dangerous, should be lauded. It’s time to move on from questions over whether their decision was ethically sound, and to think about what this reporting might do for public debate.
(Oliver Laughland. The Guardian on line. New York. Australian edition. 9 September 2013)
Add to this Indonesia’s indignant dismissal of the Abbott policy of buying indonesian fishing boats. Not even sworn in and Abbott has already upset Indonesia and drawn world wide attention to our treatment of refugees. Indonesia fishermen show just how ridiculous the boat buy back scheme is.
“If I sold my boat for a lot of money maybe I would even have enough money to build two boats. We are fishermen,” he shrugs, “If they buy a boat, we can easily build another one.”
(Kate Lamb. The Guadian on line. New York, Australian edition. 6 September 2013)
Abbotts ethics must be called into question after is Chief of Staff gets off a drunk driving charge after the incoming Attorney General gives a character reference. Is the Attorney General interfering with the legal system on behave of mates going to be a feature of this government?
We now have a deputy leader of the Nationals, Barnaby Joyce who, on Q and A, said that the answer to climate change was to wear less clothing. God help Australia when global warming becomes too obvious to ignore. This sort of attitude shows the lack of depth and understanding by the incoming government of the real issues facing the world.
Barnaby Joyce is also starring in the beginnings of another disagreement with Indonesia over Indonesian investment in cattle properties in Australia. He has come out against it foot in mouth as only Barnaby can when there is no indication that Indonesia wants to invest in Australian cattle properties. With fools like this within Abbott is likely to have a difficult time keeping it all together when he has members of the government who mouth off about problems that do not exist.
Abbott was elected with the relentless help of the Murdoch press appealing to the underbelly of Australia with lies, misrepresentation and Goebbels’ style propaganda. The govern that has been elected reflects those ideals. Murdoch may have elected the government but Abbott holding it together is already looking shaky.
There is something happening now that brings some hope of breaking Murdoch’s strangleholds on Australian media and politics. Australia, and its politics’ are now prominent in world affairs with the help of such media outlets as the New York Guardian and the two reporters who arrived by boat at Christmas Island on a refugee boat. This incident, and the rebukes from Indonesia show how much attention we are getting.
This prominence in the world media is not of a favourably nature. Maybe the world media can help Australia rid itself of the Murdoch domination of MSM and Australia can have a real election based on real issues and policies.