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"Towbacks," a Radical but Effective Solution to Indonesian Corruption
by mitch Thursday, Mar 15 2012, 8:13am
international / social/political / commentary

A very shrewd opposition proposal (policy) to tow people-smuggling vessels back to their point of origin has outraged Indonesia's foreign minister, who views the very effective solution to rampant Indonesian corruption, as "impossible!" However, we can ASSURE Indonesian FM, Marty Natalegawa, that the policy would not only gain popular support in Oz, but would be an extremely feasible, effective and simple solution to the ongoing problem of people smuggling. Perhaps corrupt Indonesian regulators, police, navy personnel and politicians may now review their odorous position with regard to the lucrative business of people smuggling!

We would also remind the cesspool of corrupt Indonesian officials that AUSTRALIA continues to seek justice and the extradition of the KNOWN murderers of the 'Balibo five,' particularly Yunus Yosfia, the COWARDLY barbarian that ordered the brutal, cold blooded, slaying of five UNARMED AUSTRALIAN journalists in East Timor -- we do not easily forget such gross, cowardly and barbaric crimes against our citizens by 'barley out of the trees' notoriously CORRUPT Indonesian 'special forces' officers. [We could also give you a taste of Oz special forces if you wish! Are you reading this, Yosfia and cohorts?]

The days of COMPLICIT corruption with Oz (Labor) governments are OVER; I of course refer to the money laundering caper that former Labor PM, Paul 'fingers' Keating, facilitated via a federal government sanctioned CASINO on Christmas Island! The casino became notorious for money-laundering junkets from Indonesia and its mainly politically connected patronage. MILLIONS of dollars were laundered with the help and very kind assistance of Labor PM, Paul Keating -- who has avoided an inquiry into the CRIMINAL issue to date.

I would also add that both Oz and Indonesia are subordinate to the wishes of Washington at the MOMENT but things could change OVERNIGHT! Australia -- unlike America -- does not view our largest trading partner, China, as an enemy or threat; we are acutely aware that the REAL THREAT to Oz and the stability of the region, is corrupt, barbaric INDONESIA.

We also note that Indonesia has embarked on a nuclear program -- well, we have no illusions in that regard; bear in mind that with some minimal assistance from our non-American allies, we are easily able to become a full scale nuclear power and maintain regional security!

So before over-reacting to our effective proposals/solutions we would advise that Indonesia clean up its act and stem the tide of illegals seeking entry in Australia -- we hold Indonesia responsible for every people smuggling vessel that leaves its corrupt shores!

[Now keep your eye on Washington and learn how to play real international politics, you spineless, Canberra dunderheads!]

Report from The Australian follows:

Jakarta defiant over asylum boat 'towbacks'
by Paul Maley and Brendan Nicholson

THE Coalition is set for a showdown with Jakarta after the opposition vowed to press ahead with its controversial plan to tow back asylum boats, despite Indonesia's Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa describing the policy as "impossible".

Yesterday, Dr Natalegawa dealt a hammer blow to a key plank of the Coalition's border protection policies - boat tow-backs - saying the plan was an exercise in burden-shifting and would be unacceptable to Indonesia.

Addressing reporters in Canberra, where he had been meeting new Foreign Minister Bob Carr, the normally circumspect Dr Natalegawa gave the clearest indication yet that Jakarta would not co-operate with the policy.

"It would be impossible and not advisable to simply shift the nature of the challenge from one end of the continuum to the other," Dr Natalegawa said.

"That's where we are coming from in terms of approach and I think that provides a hint or an illustration of how we feel about policies that simply pass the nature of the problem to different phases of that chain."

Dr Natalegawa's comments are the strongest yet from an Indonesian official concerning the Coalition's policy to return seaworthy boats, where it is safe to do so.

They also reflect a widespread view in Jakarta that people-smuggling is essentially an Australian problem - albeit one that poses a significant impost on Indonesia - that should be dealt with by Australia.

Nevertheless, his comments drew a defiant response from the Coalition, with opposition immigration spokesman Scott Morrison saying that under a Coalition government, the "Australian government's policies will be determined by the Australian government".

"If the Coalition is elected having clearly stated this policy, then it will be implemented," Mr Morrison told The Australian.

"The Australian people would accept nothing less."

Asked if the Coalition was prepared to override Jakarta's objections and return boats unilaterally, Mr Morrison said the Coalition would respect Indonesia's core interests and priorities, such as trade matters and food security. "Equally, we would have some very important issues where there would be a similar expectation of respect," he said.

"At the end of the day, any nation's border-protection policies are a matter for that nation."

Mr Morrison also offered a different interpretation of the Indonesian Foreign Minister's remarks, saying Dr Natalegawa was calling for "a series of measures that work across the continuum, from source to destination".

"And that's always been our view," he said.

Dr Natalegawa's comments came amid gathering doubt about the efficacy and morality of boat towbacks, which are widely opposed within the Defence forces and condemned by refugee groups.

A draft report written by Customs and Border Protection just before the 2010 election highlighted a host of legal, practical and reputational hazards associated with the policy.

"Past experiences indicate this could include deliberately lit fires, improvised weapons, potential physical assault and increased risks to the safety of personnel required to rescue (asylum-seekers) who jump overboard," the report, which was never officially endorsed, found. "The impact of morale of Defence will suffer and . . . possible consequences will be greater incidents of post-traumatic stress disorder."

Yesterday, Immigration Minister Chris Bowen leapt on Dr Natalegawa's comments, calling on the Coalition to "accept reality" and acknowledge the idea was dead.

"We've heard from the navy that it's dangerous," he told Sky. "We've seen the documents from Border Protection Command that it's dangerous.

"We've seen the UN High Commissioner for Refugees say in his view it breaches the Refugee Convention. And we've seen the Foreign Minister of Indonesia say it would be impossible and ill-advised. I mean, what more does Tony Abbott need to hear?"

Mr Bowen also accused the Coalition of advancing contradictory policy agendas, saying the opposition's plan to run a Jakarta-centric foreign policy was at odds with its attitude towards Indonesia on boats.

"Well, Jakarta's said what they think of this policy and clearly it is just not workable," he said.

In 2010, Dr Natalegawa described an identical pledge to return boats made by Kevin Rudd in the lead-up to the 2007 as backward-looking.

Yesterday, he stressed that Indonesia wanted a continuation of the co-operative Bali consultations process to deal with people-smuggling.

"It's called the Bali Process," Dr Natalegawa said.

"It means that countries of origin, countries of transit like Indonesia, as well as destinations like Australia all work hand-in-hand in a collaborative and integrated way in addressing, preventing, disrupting and dealing and managing cases of people-smuggling."

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