[Marxism] Snowden Down Under

Gary MacLennan gary.maclennan1 at gmail.com
Tue Nov 19 17:01:34 MST 2013

The impact of the revelation that the secret Australian Security state had
been tapping the personal phones of the Indonesian president and his
closest acquaintances, continues to reverberate both in OZ and in Indonesia.

At first the new conservative government, in the time honored tradition of
the three envelopes, blamed the tapping on their Labor predecessors, then
someone pointed out that doing so might make the Tories weaker on defence
than Labor. So they had to abandon the first envelope strategy.

They then resorted to the 'we don't discuss security matters' and 'what is
all the fuss about anyway', 'We all spy on each other', 'That's what
governments do'.

But the Indonesians at first seemed to be going through the motions of
protesting, then domestic opinion must have asserted itself because now
they appear to be taking a genuinely tough line.

That is possibly the most interesting aspect of the whole squalid affair.
The other repercussion that intrigues is that the row would appear to put
into jeopardy, Australia's basic policy towards Indonesia, of "keep your
enemies close'.  The whole point of that strategy is that the enemy must
think he is your friend. Indonesians can have few illusions on that score.

So we are now back to a variation of the "Yellow Peril" - the old colonial
Australian fear that the Coloured peoples above us would pour down on White
Australia, like the force of gravity in the Ptolemaic imaginary.

Definitely it is all history as farce.



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