The ABC’s decision to publish stolen top secret documents has clearly damaged Australia’s relationship with Indonesia.
And for what?
So smirking ABC journalists could thumb their nose at the new government that they hate so much.
It cannot be for any other reason.
It is not in the public’s interest to know about the contents of classified surveillance programs. If it was, they would not be classified.
And it most certainly is not in the nation’s interests. Everyone, from farmers to foreign affairs officials are upset about the leaks.
Whatever one thinks of the new Abbott government, it is criminally irresponsible for the nation’s broadcaster to report the contents of stolen and illegally leaked national secrets. The ABC is just as culpable as the traitorous Edward Snowden.
But while the ABC went into overdrive to condemn the leak of its journalists’ salaries and to defend its own publication of much more sensitive information, one little story was left uncovered by Auntie ABC.
And that is the Chinese-assisted program of Indonesian surveillance of Australia, Australian citizens and Australian businesses. Yes, that’s right. With the help of China, Indonesia is spying on Australia. But you wouldn’t know that if you listened to the ABC.
Now, I do not highlight this point to raise hackles against the Indonesians.
I raise it to highlight two simple truths.
Firstly, the ABC is not interested in news. It is filled with Green-leaning journalists who will do anything to undermine the Abbot government’s efforts to stop the boats and once again impose control over Australia’s borders.
And secondly, wherever there are communications, those communications can be intercepted.
And right around the world it is not just governments that eavesdrop. Newspapers do it too. And you would simply be naive to assume that businesses don’t engage in it either. Information is money. Information is security. Information gives you the upper hand.
I’m not saying it is right or legal. I am simply saying that you should expect it. From everywhere. In fact, given the recent revelations that the US has been spying on its own citizens as well as the German president, it would come as no surprise to know that Tony Abbott’s conversations are also targeted.
And if you can’t trust the US, there is simply no reason you can trust any other government. Including Indonesia’s.
That is why it is no surprise at all that the Australian government gathers intelligence. Nor is it a surprise that the Indonesian government is using Chinese help to do so as well.
It’s just that the Indonesian press would not be stupid enough, or so unpatriotic, as to disclose its country’s intelligence efforts against Australia.
But what we do know now is that the Indonesians have officially stopped trying to halt people smuggling. That’s not a surprise because unofficially it was never interested in halting it either.
Over 55,000 boat people have arrived in Australia since Labor’s disastrous decision to scrap the Howard government’s border protection policies.
Most of them came via Indonesia.
How do 55,000 people from across the world find the phone number for ‘People Smuggling Pty Ltd’ operating out of Indonesia without the actual Indonesian government being able to find it as well?
The answer to that is pretty clear. The Indonesian government is not interested in finding it. Or, to be rather more brutally honest, the Indonesian government is part of the racket.
That is why the Indonesian Army ferries illegal immigrants to their boat awaiting departure for Australia. And it is also why the Indonesian authorities stand by and watch as women and children on that same boat drown 50m from the Indonesian shore.
And then the Indonesians have the gall to expect Australia to rescue these people a stone’s throw from their shoreline but refuse to provide any assistance themselves, or to accept them back into Indonesia.
Australia is involved in a mug’s game with Indonesia when it comes to people smuggling. Our generosity and humanitarian assistance to those in distress is abused. And the alleged Indonesian assistance to crackdown on networks is no more than a joke.
Indonesia has no respect for our border security at all.
And until that changes, boats will continue to leave from Indonesian shores and head towards Australia.
Unfortunately, the Indonesians cannot take Australia seriously when our own broadcaster shows such contempt for our government, for our security and for Australia.
To clean up this mess, we must first clean up our own backyard. And that means taking a good, long, hard look at the ABC.