Monday, February 10, 2014

Multiculturalism alive in Australia

The religion concerned is not named, for some strange reason,  but we read elsewhere that the pair met at a mosque.  So they are obviously both Presbyterians

A Lebanese man living in Australia on a student visa will spend his first night in jail after allegedly "marrying" a child bride in a religious ceremony.

Ahmad Chamma, 26, allegedly met a 12-year-old girl in the Hunter region in 2013 and became involved in an ongoing sexual relationship with her. The pair then allegedly moved to a house in Sydney's southwest, where they continued the relationship.

Police claim the man and child were married in an Islamic ceremony in NSW earlier this year and the girl is now 13.

He was charged with 25 counts of sexual intercourse with a child between 10 and 14 years.  The sexual assaults took place between January 1 and February 4.

Wearing a striped polo shirt and a black beard, the man made a brief appearance at Burwood Local Court on Friday and spoke via an Arabic interpreter.  The Newcastle University student made no application for bail and it was formally refused.

The court heard he will make a bail application during his next court appearance on February 12 at the same court.

NSW Community Services Minister Pru Goward said the case was brought to the attention of authorities by Centrelink.

Ms Goward said anecdotal evidence suggests forced marriages between children and adults was an ongoing issue among Sydney communities.  "This is a very secretive practice ... but it is not an unknown practice," she said.

"I understand there are actually a significant number of unlawful, unregistered marriages to underaged girls in NSW, particularly in western Sydney, southwest Sydney and the Blue Mountains."
The girl has been taken into state care.


Illegal immigrant realities and the puerile misrepresentation of them by the Leftist media

Greg Sheridan

The Canberra/Jakarta imbroglio over boats is intensely complex, with many different moving parts. So far the Abbott government has handled it with operational and diplomatic competence. But it poses a broader challenge to Australia's political maturity. The imbroglio involves a serious disagreement between Jakarta and Canberra.

The government of Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono would rather Australia did not turn boats around and tow them back to the edge of Indonesian waters. The Abbott government has decided that this is the only effective way to combat people-smuggling, an illegal industry the Indonesian government itself opposes.

The hysterical reaction among ABC and Fairfax commentators to this disagreement puts a question mark not over the Abbott government, but over the broader maturity of the Australian political class.

The question is whether the political and commentator class is capable of analysing and responding to a policy disagreement between Australia and Indonesia with anything approaching calmness, rationality, balance, a sense of proportion and some basic knowledge.

By far the most foolish analysis, important only because it is representative, was written by Laura Tingle in The Australian Financial Review. She wrote that: "The Indonesian navy is now not patrolling looking for asylum-seeker boats but for the Australian navy."

This is completely untrue and was never true at any point.

Tingle went on: "Indonesia watchers also warn of even darker currents. They point out that China has already provided naval patrol assistance to both Fiji and Vanuatu. An overstretched and very pissed-off Indonesia might be prepared to consider also accepting some assistance."

To compare the strategic outlook of Indonesia with that of Vanuatu is almost deranged. But to think that a disagreement with Canberra over boatpeople would lead to a fundamental pro-Chinese strategic realignment by Jakarta, or that sovereignty-obsessed Indonesia would allow the Chinese to take over patrolling duties in its coastal waters, is beyond absurdity.

That a senior member of the Canberra press gallery could print such infantile nonsense, which could only emerge from a complete lack of knowledge about anything to do with Indonesia's strategic culture, demonstrates how extremely ill-equipped many mainstream commentators are to deal with anything related to Indonesia at all.

Such sentences are an insult to the intelligence of The Australian Financial Review's readers and severely degrade the Australian policy debate.

So what really is going on with Indonesia?  It's important to try to have some sense of both sequence and context.

The Indonesian government suspended co-operation with Australia on combating people-smuggling not as a result of Tony Abbott's boats policy but in response to revelations by Edward Snowden that our intelligence agencies had tapped the phones of the Indonesian President, his wife and senior associates. These actions occurred when Kevin Rudd was prime minister and were approved by cabinet ministers.

The Indonesians themselves want people-smuggling to stop but have no idea how to achieve this. Their only policy suggestion is further region-wide talks under the Bali Process. There is nothing wrong with such talks but they don't constitute action on people-smuggling. Such talks have been going on for years and produced nothing much.

That is not to say that regional co-operation is not important. The Abbott government has been working hard with regional governments. Just this week it announced the donation of two Customs vessels to Malaysia for use in combating people-smuggling. That the Malaysians would accept such a gift is a sign of a very good relationship.

Jakarta ended co-operation on people-smuggling because it thought this would hurt the Abbott government and make it more likely to yield to its demands, mainly a promise of no further spying, arising from the Snowden issues. The chief real consequence was that Australian personnel no longer participate in land-based disruption activities against people-smuggling syndicates within Indonesia. Typically, Australian agencies provided the funding, and some of the intelligence, for such operations. These are now much less frequent and effective.

Jakarta held that no nation should undertake unilateral actions. But this suspension virtually forced Canberra down a unilateral road.

Apart from Immigration Minister Scott Morrison, the two key figures in the government operation are Lieutenant-General Angus Campbell and the head of Customs, Mike Pezzullo. Much rightly has been written about the effectiveness of Campbell, but Pezzullo is also a hero here. A former deputy secretary of the Defence Department, he is relentlessly energetic and has a hyper problem-solving, can-do approach. Between the two of them, they came up with the innovation of using virtually unsinkable lifeboats to return asylum-seekers to Indonesia if they disabled their own boats.

Thinking one step ahead of the people-smugglers has been critical to the success, so far, of Operation Sovereign Borders.

The Indonesians have been hostile to the boats turnaround policy itself, and to the minor, incidental breach of their sovereign territorial waters by the Australian Navy. But again, the sequencing and timing of these reactions is important.

The Indonesian government did not react to these events when it first heard about them. At every point Canberra has kept Jakarta meticulously informed of what it is doing. Jakarta reacted only when these became issues within the Indonesian media and politics. With elections looming in Indonesia, a whiff of anti-Canberra sentiment is as useful in Jakarta as it often is in Perth.

Inquirer can reveal exactly how the breach of Indonesian sovereign waters by the Australian Navy occurred. The 12 nautical mile zone of a nation's sovereign waters is not calculated just by being 12n/m from the shore at every point. Rather, to calculate this zone you draw a series of straight lines from 12n/m out from one headland, the point of the mainland jutting farthest out to the sea, to the next salient point. Thus if the shoreline in part is shaped like a large bay, the 12n/m sovereign zone will be considerably more than 12n/m out from the inward curve of the bay. Thus Australian ships at all points were attempting to be 12n/m from the Indonesian shore, but when they communicated to the Indonesians the precise points at which they had turned around the various boats the Indonesians calculated these on a map and came to the conclusion that, technically at least, they breached Indonesia's sovereign waters.

At least some Indonesians would have been happy if the Australians had promised not to do it again and shut up about it. But the Australian authorities decided they needed to tell the truth and publicly apologised.

This led to some bellicose statements by an Indonesian air force spokesman that the The Australian Financial Review misinterpreted so wildly. But a day or two later, Senior Security Minister Djoko Suyanto got his spokesman to say: "The increased security measures in the southern part of the country is in order to anticipate increased illegal migrant activities."

Not the least of the ironies of this situation is it appears all to have been a typical Jakarta shadow play anyway. It is unclear that any Indonesian military assets have been moved at all, though this did not stop the aforementioned Financial Review article seriously claiming, with utter fatuousness, there was a chance of someone in Indonesia's or Australia's militaries firing "a pot shot" at each other.

It is the case that Indonesian politics is complex, fissiparous, culture-specific, high-context and difficult for outsiders to follow. It is also the case that in the repertoire of the international people-smuggling industry blackening the reputation of Western law enforcement and military agencies, and hopefully therefore provoking litigation and paralysing inquiries, is a standard piece. The Australian political class needs a great deal more sophistication and, frankly, a great deal more basic knowledge, to cope effectively with these challenging realities.


Forgotten: Historic hot temperatures recorded with detail and care in Adelaide

What I found most interesting about this was the skill, dedication and length of meteorological data taken in the 1800′s. When our climate is “the most important moral challenge” why is it there is so little interest in our longest and oldest data?

Who knew that one of the most meticulous and detailed temperature records in the world from the 1800′s comes from Adelaide, largely thanks to Sir Charles Todd. The West Terrace site in Adelaide was one of the best in the world at the time, and provides accurate historic temperatures from  “Australia’s first permanent weather bureau at Adelaide in 1856″. (Rainfall records even appear to go as far back as 1839.)  Lance Pidgeon went delving into the National Archives and was surprised at what he found.

If we want to understand our climate the records from the 1800′s in Adelaide are surely worth attention?

The BOM usually shows graphs like this one below starting in 1911. You might think you are looking at the complete history of Adelaide temperatures and that smoothed temperature is rising inexorably, but the historic records remain unseen. While “hottest” ever records are proclaimed in the media, few go hunting for older hotter records. Yet, one of the hottest temperatures recorded in Australia were recorded in 1828, and raging heatwaves with temperatures over 50C occurred in the 1800s. In 1896 a monster heatwave across the nation killed hundreds, and people were even evacuated on emergency trains.

BOM temperature records for Adelaide ignore older warmer days: BOM

The old equipment was not identical to modern stations, but it was recorded diligently and with expert attention, and in the same location for over 120 years. When compared side by side, the older types of screens produced slightly more  extreme temperatures than the Stevenson screens but this does not mean that the old recordings should be forgotten. With careful adjustment the Adelaide record could be one of the longest in the world. Strangely, no one seems too interested. If these old records showed Adelaide was way cooler in the 1860′s, do we suppose an eager PhD student would not have jumped at the chance to splice historic old and new records into a long alarming graph and a popular thesis? The question begs…

I fear the cult of the young means the smarts of the oldest of old-timers is automatically discounted, yet those old codgers  from the 1800′s  weren’t necessarily old at the time, and were connected to the harsh realities of the natural world in way that soft cushy net-connected university grads could not imagine today.

Below, notice how commonly those red spikes go about 40C? Adelaide gets scorched nearly every year. It’s summer.


GetUp exposed: George Soros' tentacles reach into Australia

The left-wing activist group, GetUp claims it is “an independent grass-roots community advocacy organisation.”

GetUp’s founders David Madden and Jeremey Heimans are heavily involved in a number of similar US and global left-wing activist groups, each of which is tied to the shadowy billionaire, George Soros.

 GetUp was inspired by, and modelled on similar US groups, such as and Win Back Respect. Madden and Heniman were co-founders of Win Back Respect. According to public records published on, when they were drawing expenses from the group in 2004, the major donor that year, with a contribution of $150,000 was George Soros.

Madden and Heimans are also involved with another Soros-financed left-wing activist group,  Public records reveal that between January 2003 and December 2004, Soros contributed $2,500,999 to

Madden and Heimans are co-founders of the global activist group,, an organization that the Canadian Minister John Baird in 2008 labelled as “shadowy foreign organization tied to billionaire activist George Soros.”

Madden and Heimans can hardly claim that GetUp is non-partisan when its original board members included Australian Workers Union secretary Bill Shorten, Australian Fabian Society secretary Evan Thornley, green activist Cate Faehrmann, and left-wing trade union researcher and “community organiser” Amanda Tattersall. The largest donor to GetUp in 2010 with a donation of $1.1 million is the CFMEU.

GetUp’s benefactor, George Soros is clearly partisan. Of the $3.5 million in recent campaign donations made by Soros, 99.84% was donated to Democrat candidates and organisations.

The $3.5 million is just the amount declared as political donations. Soros has poured untold millions into numerous political, activist and media front groups. In 1973 in an attempt to defeat George Bush at the forthcoming election, Soros gathered a group of left-wing activists and Democrats at his mansion and helped found, with a donation of $10 million, America Coming Together (ACT), a grassroots activist group designed to co-ordinate all his other front groups.

When the US brought in laws limiting political donations, Soros used his considerable clout to circumvent the laws by inspiring new legislation allowing the so-called “527” organisations to raise funds without breaching the laws. Hence the myriad of Soros activist groups can raise funds without limitation on the basis that they are not political groups. So while they may not donate to political parties they can run very effective advertising campaigns and stunts that clearly target one party and favour another.

It is clear that GetUp follows the Soros model in Australia. It is set up as a “non-partisan” activist group to harvest donations that are exempt from Australia’s political donations laws. The corporate entity, Getup Limited does not appear on the Australian Electoral Commission’s list of “associated entities”, even though it claims on its website that is legally obliged to disclose donations over $11,200 to the AEC.

The group utilises the funds together with the energy of its well-meaning activist members to target the conservative parties with stunts and advertising campaigns whilst pushing left-wing agendas such as global warming scaemongering, the carbon tax, same- sex marriage and the release of illegal refugees from detention.

From the GetUp website: “GetUp does not back any particular party, but aims to build an accountable and progressive Parliament - a Parliament with economic fairness, social justice and environment at its core.”

“GetUp is a not-for-profit and receives no money from any political party or the government. We rely solely on funds and in-kind donations from the Australian public.”

GetUp are just another Union front.

THE union movement has emerged as a key financial backer of the advocacy group GetUp!, with six unions pouring more than a million dollars into its election purse in the past three weeks alone.

GetUp! has splashed nearly $1.5 million on TV advertising since the campaign began, meaning the unions have effectively supplied two-thirds of its advertising budget.

The organisation’s director, Simon Sheikh, refused to name the six unions yesterday, saying they wanted their identities kept secret until after donor returns are filed with the Australian Electoral Commission.

No money from any political party, but plenty from one party’s (ALP) chief donors.


1 comment:

Paul said...

Soros is just their manager of business on the Left. Its as old as communism to control the opposition by being the Opposition. I don't think those who seek to rule over us all are as concerned with distinctions of Left and Right to the extent that they want us to be.