Andrew Bolt today told his dwindling readership about the Barokah boatpeople tragedy which occurred in December last year when a boat full of asylum seekers capsized in Indonesian waters and Australian authorities refused to help in the rescue. The disaster, the scale of which is only just becoming known – as is Australia’s role, or rather lack of it, in the events that followed the initial distress call from the boat – is an indictment of the Australian government.
For the racist Bolt, however, this is simply another opportunity to propagandise his anti-boatpeople stance by pretending to be horrified at the tragedy and saying that it is another reason why boatpeople should be deterred from coming to Australia and that incarceration in places they don’t want to be while they await a long drawn ‘processing’ of their claims will provide that deterrence.
To top it off, Bolt then uses the tragedy to push his anti-Left barrow saying that, “if this had happened under John Howard’s watch, we’d no doubt have had another SIEV X spate of protests and plays, accusing the Liberals of murder”.
Of course, it doesn’t matter under whose watch the incident occurred, someone needs to be held accountable, and policies need to be put in place to ensure that asylum seeking refugees that want to come to Australia are able to do so safely without risk of either sinking or going to off shore detention centers for indefinite periods if they survive the journey.
Australian’s need to demand an enquiry into the incident and to demand that refugees are treated a refugees and not criminals that need locking up.