Australia and the
One Man's Web > Politics > Australia and the refugees
|I cannot hope to keep a full record of the Australian government's "intolerant and untruthful" attitude towards refugees. But these pages stand as a record of evil done and truth told. The facts speak for themselves. History will show Howard and Ruddock have failed the high calling of their office. Jan , 2004|
Australia's Shame Australia's treatment of Asylum Seekers has become a disgrace, especially in the last year (2001). We have changed from a country which welcomed the Vietnamese Boat People under a visionary leadership...
not forgotten. The retired captain of the Norwegian liner ship Tampa remains a hero for the hundreds of refugees he rescued from a sinking ship nearly two years ago....
smuggling - or people first...? The Australian Government's
spin doctoring of reality to gain electoral advantage at the expense of
to get re-elected. "A
former chief of the Australian navy has accused the Federal Government of
acting like Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels in its handling of
defence and refugee issues." ...
We Australians, with our fine nose for
hypocrisy, have little sympathy for those like the Pharisee in this story
and Lies How
can you have queue jumpers when there are not any queues to jump....
international human rights watchdog has castigated Prime Minister John
Howard over his government's handling of asylum seekers. Human Rights
Watch is quoted as saying Mr Howard used the boat people issue
to fan racism to assist his election win....
causes riots? The Federal Government's refusal to close detention centres and implement
an alternative refugee and asylum seeker policy is to blame for the
dangerous conditions at Curtin Detention Centre according to leaders of
the Uniting Church...
welcomes the positive efforts under way to improve the conditions
of detention in Australia... However, he finds that "the human
rights situation of persons in immigration detention in Australia is a
matter of serious concern". ... a more humane approach to
illegal immigration "would certainly be desirable", ...
the situation of persons in immigration detention in Woomera
could... be considered inhuman and degrading.
for Refugees We
don't have to stand by feeling there is nothing active we can do.
"Tom," a Uniting Church minister is working up a protest cum
awareness raising activity for his area. ......
can't wait The Royal Australian and New
Zealand College of Psychiatrists today reiterated its call for an urgent
assessment of the mental and physical health needs of detained asylum-seekers.......
in Detention (1) Statistics
from Mr Ruddock. 914 minors have been held in detention
centres during 2000 until 14 December......
Church leaders today
condemned the Federal Government for its agreement with the Iranian Government
to accept the forced deportations of failed Iranian asylum seekers......
Denial of Basic Rights
Former Liberal prime minister Malcolm Fraser commented on elements of racism in
the Howard Government's asylum-seeker policy.......
from Woomera At two
years old we confiscated our son's gun made from a stick. He went
off, constructed a gun from Duplo, and came back and shot us both. There
is something about violence in our nature. At the age of 16 he is strongly
anti war. Yet he plays violent computer games incessantly.......
to Phillip Dear Mr
Ruddock, I was struck an article in the Bulletin, probably more than 20
years ago, which I have always remembered. It was about you, an up
and coming federal politician. As a young member of parliament you
were well respected and liked. .......
Mercy for Children
Immigration Minister Philip Ruddock today applied to keep five children in a detention centre after the Family Court said they should be set free.
for solutions to problems that beset their nations. The 'problem of asylum
seekers' was highlighted at an electorally opportune moment, in Australia,
to impose a solution based on misinformation, fear, prejudice and outright
Anger and Despair... One of my colleagues said his wife is furious at what is happening in Australia at present. He said he simply despairs. I alternate between the two.
Ruddock Promoted to Attorney General
On compassionate grounds the
Australian government has allowed refugee Ebrahim Sammaki to stay in
Unlawful!!!... Five asylum seeker children whom Centacare South Australia has supervised living in a suburban Adelaide home for several months could be forced back into a detention centre after Australia's highest court ruled their release into the community was unlawful.
Tampa = Disgrace On December 2 2001 The Herald Sun reported the knighting of the captain of the Norwegian freighter Tampa. The quote below from this article sums up the startlingly different attitudes of Norway and Australia, and shows how far we have come in our loss of compassion...
Ian McPhee is the former Ethnic Affairs Minister in the Fraser Liberal Government of 1979-1982...
The Slave Ships of Ashmore Reef. 'I thought, "Its like a slave ship.' I thought, 'Jesus. I thought we were Australia. I thought we were a bloody good country....'
Jesus the Refugee "a refugee is a person who "owing to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion, is outside the country of his nationality..."
More Myths These points are listed by the Edmund Rice Centre as myths about asylum seekers who come to Australia.
Cheap Bastards Adrian Tame of the Sunday Herald Sun on 31/3/2002 reports that the Australian Government has begun billing asylum seekers for the time it keeps them in detention....
Use and Abuse of Refugees The Uniting Church in Australia believes that the Federal Government's response to the situation of the Bakhtiari family is cruel and inhumane. ... "We are extremely concerned about the use and abuse of vulnerable people, particularly children, to score political points.
Report of Justice P.
N. Bhagwati, Regional Advisor for Asia and the Pacific of the United
Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Mission to Australia 24 May to
2 June 2002
on Refugees Australia's
premier cartoonist ...
to the Herald Sun of October 24 the Senate select committee
on the children overboard affair has found that both the Prime Minister
John Howard and the former Minister of Defence Peter Reith “perpetuated a lie
that asylum seekers had thrown their children into the sea.” Between them they
were told 24 times......
untold story of parents in detention
Immigration detention profoundly undermines the parental role, rendering
parents powerless and unable to provide adequately for their children's
physical and emotional needs, child and adolescent psychiatrists said
is mental torture
A study of 10 families imprisoned in an Australian detention centre
discovered children's mental illness increased ten-fold over a two-year
period. Adults experienced a three times increase in psychiatric
in Detention (2) HREOC
officers recently completed a fact finding mission to Woomera IRPC, as part of
the National Inquiry into Children in Immigration Detention currently being
undertaken by the Commission......
To listen to some people,
it would seem that those supporting refugees are some benighted minority
to Iran Last week I
listened to Carmel Travers speaking at the Adelaide UniFem breakfast. In
the excerpt played on 5AN Adelaide, she read her son's essay on his
grandfather's trauma in Iran, all because his family were Baha'i and not Muslim.
The boy spoke of rapes and beatings......
Go Home? It is
very much in the public interest for the public to know what sort of
agreement the federal government have reached with the government of
Iran—a government, let me remind the Senate, that is part of President
Bush's axis of evil and that is frequently criticised for significant
human rights breaches....
Negligence Three senior Australian doctors have launched medical
negligence complaints against Australasian Correctional Management (ACM) over
its treatment of two former detainees in Villawood Detention Centre. The doctors
say the two complaints about inadequate medical care are the tip of the iceberg.......
as it should be At
the moment, there are over 400 men, women and children just like us, with warm
hearts and hope for the future of their lives, being tossed on very rough seas
and in extraordinary circumstances. They have come from frightful circumstances
and are seeking asylum in this country, but they are being turned away.......
The retiring President of the Uniting Church in Australia today spoke out against abysmal moral standards in Australian politics and a conspiracy of ignorance
She told us of her visits to the detention centre. Her
soup was uneaten as she related the most appalling stories of abuse.
Link It is
a strange gathering. I look at the people seated around the room. The groups of people I see around me...
'ONE MORE LIE IN A LONG LINE OF LIES', SAY UNITING CHURCH LEADERS
Australia Breaches Human Rights.... A Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission Inquiry has found that children in Australian immigration detention centres have suffered numerous and repeated breaches of their human rights.
as it should be At
the moment, there are over 400 men, women and children just like us, with
warm hearts and hope for the future of their lives, being tossed on very
rough seas and in extraordinary circumstances. They have come from
frightful circumstances and are seeking asylum in this country, but they
are being turned away.....
Malcolm Fraser is a former Australian Prime Minister.... of the same party as John Howard and Phillip Ruddock. John Howard was Treasurer in the Fraser Government...
John Howard. Often when I see the Prime Minister on TV, I am reminded of my Dad. The trouble is...
Those Lucky Refugees Most detention centres in this country suffer overcrowding, a lack of natural light and recreational facilities, and have completely inadequate sanitary conditions.....they are more like overnight police lock-ups than places suitable for the lengthy detention of people who have committed no crime. And of course they are mostly sited thousands of miles from civilisation...
Going Home? Imagine being 8 or 10 years of age... a school kid in Adelaide or Melbourne. You've lived here all your life and never been outside your country. What sort of country would compel you and your family to go and live a war ravaged third world country? Australia would, and is in the process of doing so....
the rules Uniting
Church and Anglican refugee workers express outrage at Government attempts
to change refugee rules....
War Zone, or Concentration Camp? The Woomera Detention Centre is like a war zone with nearly every detainee, including children, suffering depression and anxiety, according to a former doctor at the centre.
the little children
The Australian Government has condemned Justice Prafullachandra Bhagwati for
using "emotive descriptions" in his condemnation of the detention
centre at Woomera. Adele Horin in the Sydney Morning Herald of August 3
said "This is a crime for which the icy Philip Ruddock could never be
accused." She spoke of our government treating children as "collateral
damage" in its border protection policy.......
and over here You could wonder just what the
"Pacific Solution" has been worth. The
Daily Telegraph reported on 7-3-2003 that nearly half the asylum seekers on
the Siev 4 of the "children overboard" scandal have been resettled in
Australia anyway, despite assurances by the Federal Government that would not
happen. 100 Iraqis of the 219 asylum seekers on the vessel have been granted
temporary humanitarian visas as genuine refugees.......
burn the place down?
There has been great outrage in the popular press
about the spate of fires in the Australian Concentration Camps... Perhaps Mr
Howard and the right wing press, so hurt by refugee's lack of thanks should go
back to Shakespeare; the Merchant of Venice, Act 111 Scene 1.....
Generous Offer not! As
reported in many places the Immigration Minister claims he has signed a deal
with the Iranian Government to forcibly return 227 refugees from Australia to
Iran. Macken says "There is real doubt whether such an agreement exists.......
Despite his protestations, the people whom all Australians admire continue to
slam the Howard Government's refugee policy. Former governor-general Sir William
Deane has criticised the federal government's human rights record, labelling the
Liberal leadership intolerant and untruthful.....
there a Christian view on refugees?
Mate, asking for "the
Christian" position on anything exposes a huge range of opinions.
Some people who identify themselves as christian positively hate others
who call themselves the same. So "the christian position" on
refugees does not exist. Having
said that, I think there are some fairly central underlying
presuppositions of Christianity which will tend to influence a christian
attitude toward refugees. There are some other common features among
Christians that will tend to negate these attitudes..
American in Baxter
Baxter today and found upset Australian man and American wife from Roxby
killed Jesus? Ranjan's
reflections are not new. His closing sentence is a classic Christian
conclusion. What is important about this reflection is that he takes
the traditional homiletics of the Church and applies them to us,
Australia, and our treatment of refugees today........
as long as Howard remains in politics he will never, ever escape his
"never, ever" insistence in 1995
The Australian government's lawyers told a court that a boy in an Australian detention centre hadn't been seen by a psychiatrist after he attempted suicide " because he did not need one."
Erosion and Redemption... In the name of security thousands of Iraqi civilians died and refugee children here were kept locked away. ... Almost everything about (the) invasion (of Iraq) was unsettling and strange.
What can I do? A small, personal reflection on justice and politics for the little person who is not an activist by nature.
One Man's Web > Politics and Ethics