Okay – let’s use a little schoolyard history to make the point why a ‘case file’ has been uppermost in the safe at Russell Offices for many years.
Pretty heady stuff to contemplate that, despite all the published drivel pretending otherwise, dear old Oz has been a de-facto nuclear power for decades.
Oh, except of course it wouldn’t have been any of our fuhrers empowered to hit the red button if the kack had ever hit the fan.
So, of course we’ve been spying on our dear neighbour nations – pretty much since 1788 – depending, of course, on ‘available resources’.
Why the hell, as a first move, was Matty Flinders sent out to chart our coastline?
But I digress.
Back to Indonesia.
If it was up to you, the reader – wouldn’t you be keeping your beady little eye on a mob who were flying military aircraft into your airspace?
If the peace needed to be kept in those circumstances – merely shooting those aircraft down certainly wouldn’t have helped much – especially if those doing the overflights were of a new nation in the early stages of feeling their oats.
But Indonesia is a nation of diverse peoples still resolving an identity after far too many years of actual and perceived exploitation, internal revolt and persecution.
On top of that they (the vast majority of their sons and daughters) are of decent Asian stock – therefore rightly sensitive to being treated with casual contempt by those they might reasonably consider as outrageous idiots.
I’m sure that most Europeans are peripherally aware of the golden rule – ‘Never put one of them buggers in the situation that they ‘lose face’ (there, I’ve just done it).
Yep. I’ve just insulted an entire nation state – our nearest neighbour who have collectively been putting up with that sort of insult for centuries.
At least I have the defence of doing that here with a purpose.
Our new prime-minister doesn’t have that defence.
It very well could be that our press is somehow constrained from letting us Ozstralians know what he’s saying to our national neighbour.
It may be that it has reached a stage that they don’t know how (through lack of journalistic professionalism, etc.)
But I don’t think so.
It strikes me that he’s not good enough within himself.
It could be that if he and his team can’t work out how to treat our valued national neighbours – that they might be flying with intent over our northern airspace again.
But as he said in Afghanistan – “shit happens”.
Except this time – the shit will be happening to some of us.
‘South Irian’ again, eh!