goodies & baddies .....
Of the 298 murdered on Malaysian Airways Flight MH17, 36 were from Australia. The outpouring of grief and support from ordinary people here in Australia has been overwhelming. It restores hope for the future, a future in which we working people, compassionate and caring, run society.
On the other hand, the hypocrisy from our political ‘leaders’ and the capitalist media has been gut wrenching. The hypocrisy is threefold.
First, under the guise of faux outrage about the deaths of 298 innocent people they have used the attack on MH17 – almost certainly done by Russian backed Ukranian separatists – to further the West’s goal of total encirclement of Russian imperialism. Abbott is using MH17 to further crass geopolitical interests.
Secondly he is using the tragedy to unite people behind his government and the attacks on the poor and working class. Already his Budget cuts have claimed one well know life – that of Gavin Jones, the founder of the Deadly Awards who died after cuts to Aboriginal funding, including his own work. There will be many many more.
To save lives at home we need to unite not with the Abbott government in grief but against it in anger.
This government’s compassion is selective. It ends completely when dealing with asylum seekers. It brutalises refugees. This is the government that has kidnapped 153 asylum seekers on the high seas and locked them up in the hull of an Australian customs ship without windows. It is the government which sends asylum seekers back to their oppressors.
Thirdly, the atrocities the West has committed and continues to commit against innocent civilians far outweighs shooting down one passenger airliner. The ruling classes of the countries which invaded Iraq and Afghanistan have the blood of over a million people on their hands. That includes Australia’s ruling class and its State – people like John Howard, Kevin Rudd, Julia Gillard, Tony Abbott.
The MH17 atrocity hides all of that. It creates or reinforces the concept of ‘the other’ as evil and ‘us’ as good. It hides the evil that are our ruling classes. The Australian media are pushing the tragedy for all it is worth, with page after incessant page virtually airbrushing everything else – Palestine, austerity, asylum seekers – from history.
The war crimes of others do that and hide the recent evil history of ‘our’ supposedly civilised ruling classes. Apart from Iraq and Afghanistan, the Americans, along with allies like Australia, killed more than 2 million in Vietnam and the rest of IndoChina. Henry Kissinger will never be brought to account for his war crimes there.
Neither will George W Bush nor drone murderer Barack Obama face a court for their war crimes. War criminal Tony Blair is now a Middle East ‘peace negotiator’, basically for Israel, let it be added.
Indeed, as we speak, US client state Israel, with its bombing and invasion of Gaza, is unleashing the next stage in its 66 year long genocide of Palestinians. There are no tears from Western leaders for the innocents murdered by Israel in the last week or so.
Our leaders are consistent. They cry and rail against an outrage when it serves the interests of imperialism or their own national agenda (often to hide austerity).
In the case of Israel they are silent in the face of genocide because it is carried out by one of their partners in imperialism. They only break their silence on the Israeli genocide of Palestinians to support it and to support Israel.