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Detained Children in OZ

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  • Detained Children in OZ

    While every nation has a right to guard its borders - how far does this have to go?
    Anyway, friends of mine in Australia have mailed me this link to a petition against the inhumane practise of detaining children of asylum seekers in Australia:
    http://www.petitiononline.com/dtention/petition.html
    Maybe you would like to takea look and decide for yourselves. Petions can be pretty inflationary, maybe even useless, but if one out of a hundred petitions serves its purpose then my time isn't wasted.

    If any of you Australian Moorcockistas would perhaps quickly comment on this to let the rest of us know what the situation is and how serious, I'd be very grateful.
    Best regards,
    L'Etranger
    Google ergo sum


  • #2
    refugee situation in Oz

    The situation in Australia is quite serious. We've had a racist government of Tories who demonise refugees. The Labor party are little better, though there is a group inside the Labor party called Labor for Refugees who are campaigning for Refugee rights.

    Some children have been locked up in these detention centres for 4 or 5 years. They suffer from psychiatric disorders because of the trauma.

    Because of protests and escapes at the mainland camps the government has set up a detention centre on the overseas pacific island of Nauru.
    Conditions are appalling.

    Here is the website for the Refugee Action Collective:

    http://www.rac-vic.org/

    During Easter 2002 I was part of a direct action at the remote Woomera detention centre. We managed to help refugees escape. Most were recaptured by the police, but I believe that 10 got away and are now living freely in New Zealand. Here are photos from the action:

    http://www.theage.com.au/photogaller...196778197.html
    :-) flamingo

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    • #3
      Re: refugee situation in Oz

      Originally posted by flamingo
      The situation in Australia is quite serious. We've had a racist government of Tories who demonise refugees. The Labor party are little better, though there is a group inside the Labor party called Labor for Refugees who are campaigning for Refugee rights.

      Will any protest from outside, like us, help?
      At least some of you people are doing things and showing a lot of courage too. Best luck,
      L'Etranger
      Google ergo sum

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      • #4
        yes it all helps. the tory Liberal party will probably get voted out later this year. help refugees in your country too.

        regards,
        flamingo
        :-) flamingo

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        • #5
          50,487 signatures total hope it helps. Is there anything else we can do to help?
          "But I'm tryin', Ringo, I'm trying real hard to be the shepard."

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          • #6
            That's horrible! Of course, I gave it my signature.
            Sweet moons!

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            • #7
              Public opinion in Australia and attitudes toward refugees are being influenced by the growing pro-refugee movement which is becoming more mainstream. However there is a long way to go because of the anti-refugee attitude of the government and views given in the tabloid media, by talk back radio rednecks and so on.

              Why do so many (not all) Australians have such a racist attitude? The history of people in Australia dates back at least 50,000 years and possibly much longer. The indiginous people of Australia are possibly the oldest culture on Earth.

              In 1788 the British colony of New South Wales was founded where Sydney now stands. Over the next decades settlers, convicts and the military expanded over the lands of the Aboriginal people. They took the land. Aborigines did not stand idly by while their way of life was being attacked, there was resistance in the form of guerilla war.

              But the Europeans had better weapons and the capitalist world was expanding everywhere. Australia was effectively founded as a military dictatorship and a colonial settler state with all the racist ideology to go with it like South Africa used to be.

              Genocide was carried out on the Aboriginal people and they are socially disadvantaged to this day. Aboriginal peoples life expectancy is 20 years less than the Australian population in general, they are discriminated against in the workforce. It is not uncommon to hear racist comments and so called 'jokes' by white people all the time in Australia, even by people who claim not to be racist. Aboriginal people were not even allowed to vote and were not counted as citizens until 1967 when a referendum was held (90% voted to give them their rights - so there is some hope!)

              The racism against refugees dates back to the 'White Australia Policy.' The White Australia policy wasn't abolished until the 1970's. The White Australia policy favoured white European migrants over Black or Asian immigration. Recently we had a crazy right wing politician, Pauline Hanson, who received 10% of the vote (mainly from rural areas) - she was getting support from all sorts of racists including anti-semitic groups, the Klu Klux Klan and assorted loonies. After Pauline Hanson made her maiden speech in Parliament in 1996, the prime miniser John Howard called it a 'new era of freedom of speech.' Thankfully Pauline Hanson is now out of politics, thanks in part to the large anti-racist protests which happened everywhere she spoke. Sometimes thousands of people turned up to shut her meetings down.

              So that's the racist side to Australia. Luckily there are a lot of people who dissagree with racism. 75% of people in Australia live in cities and mix with people from all sorts of backgrounds. The two largest cities, Sydney and Melbourne are the most multicultural. People work along side people from all sorts of places. Over the last 10 years there has been a 'reconcilliation' movement, trying to achieve social justice for Aboriginal people. 400,000 people marched across the Sydney harbour bridge to support reconciliation (and 50,000 marched across a bridge in my home city of Brisbane). The reconciliation process requires white people in Australia to understand how the indiginous people have been treated badly in the past and how they suffer from continued disadvantage and discrimination.

              There is an Aboriginal tent embassy in Canberra which has been going since the 1970s.

              I'm hopeful for the future because we can overcome racism and build united peoples movements for democracy and the rights of all people. This a struggle happening all over the world every day.
              :-) flamingo

              Comment


              • #8
                I suspect the racism is similar to that of the Whites in South Africa, Britain when it had an Empire - it's based on knowing you don't have a moral leg to stand on, so you need to dehumanise the people with the legitimate argument.

                Mind you, it's always the people from the country isn't it! Look at Serbia - Belgrade was a cosmpolitan city, but Milosovic had the support of the country areas.

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                • #9
                  It seems a shame that Australia has such an introverted goverment right now,such a huge country should be able to cope with genuine refugees,how tasteless to detain children.
                  This is just another case of the innocent being picked on.
                  Does anyone in Australia remember Bourgainville?That little copper rich island to the north of your country?Big Australian mining companies were allowed to ruin the island and when the indigenous people of the island complained about the pollution that was being caused and the damage to THEIR natural habitat the Australians,with help from New Guinea tried to crush them with force!!
                  It's all about profit,profit,profit......it seems to me that the Australian goverment don't want anyone to "Muscle" in on their economy,hence the "aggresive" stance on refugees etc......

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