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Antics of ASIO
by finch Tuesday, Jun 28 2005, 5:13am
international / human rights / commentary

The Australian Security Intelligence Organisation is at present scurrying about attempting to gain some credence by engaging in a series of raids in Sydney and Melbourne. The focus of these “raids” has not been clarified – the term “terrorists” was of course mentioned but no arrests were made. The raids were described by ASIO liaison as “preventative measures,” designed to disrupt “future” organised terrorist attacks! Therefore these raids could be accurately described as pre-emptive actions; we know the result of pre-emption without accurate, solid evidence. If the evidence does not exist the raids would then be pure harassment and illegal.

Regardless of “new sweeping anti-terrorist laws,” which are obviously being tested by these raids, let it clearly be stated that these ‘laws’ do not extend to subverting Australian democratic principles. Legal experts would have little difficulty proving various illegalities in these raids. The cowboy mentality that pervades ASIO at present and their naive schoolboy behaviour, may eventually not only compromise the organisation but also the government that originally introduced these laws.

If raids were warranted in the first instance then where are the arrests? Only minimal ‘evidence’ is required under Australian Law to temporarily detain persons – where are the detainees? It would seem that someone is attempting to attract our attention or that ASIO’s raison d’ętre may have faded into obscurity.

These tactics (antics) may be effective in Bush’s America but had the ‘strategists’ behind these raids consulted (Australian) analysts they would have been informed that these methods are counter-productive in a local context.

The recent posting of the previous ASIO chief, Dennis ‘bozzo’ Richardson, to an ambassadorial position in Washington may have left the organisation with an identity crisis and a loss of direction? This could explain the frantic need to ‘raid’ but not lay charges, an intriguing strategy! Or is ASIO simply complying with the whims of a government constantly in search of new methods of alarming the public and playing fear politics?

Regarding ASIO’s competence record, it is now a matter of public record that numerous attempts by citizens to inform ASIO of serious matters relating to national security have met with the ‘tea-break’ mentality or the 'we’re too busy with important internal matters to be concerned with public external information’.

It is unnecessary to pursue this further; however, while Howard continues to whip a dead American horse, let the entire population of Australia look to New Zealand and ask themselves why the Kiwis are not in a state of panic regarding terrorist issues. Perhaps it is because they declined membership to the coalition of willing liars and illegal invaders?

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