Apr 20, 2012

Who stopped Robinson? The inhibition of responsibility

Governments have ensured that accountability for harassment is ever more difficult.

Bernard Keane — Politics editor

Bernard Keane

Politics editor

Twenty four hours on, we now have a clearer idea of the circumstances in which Australian human rights lawyer Jen Robinson was stopped at Heathrow Airport on her way home to Australia, told she was on an “inhibited persons” list and that she would not be permitted to board her flight without approval from the Australian High Commission.

But not why she was stopped and on whose authority.

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48 thoughts on “Who stopped Robinson? The inhibition of responsibility

  1. Chess C

    BK – thanks for your analysis and decoding of this important issue.

  2. Stiofan

    “Plainly a government agency is either lying or knows far more than they are letting on.”

    No, there is at least one other possibility.

    “Robinson, who has spent most of the last day in the air, has clarified that she understands no call was made from Heathrow to Australia House before her check-in was approved”.

    “Clarified”? Yesterday, you reported such approval was given. Was that an accurate report of what Robinson had said? How does Robinson know that no call was made to Australia House?

    Still unanswered is the question of what actually happened at Heathrow:

    * why and in what manner did Virgin and the “security guard” change their minds?

    * did Robinson see any phonecalls being made?

    * who was this “security guard” – airport security, a Virgin employee, a UK Government official, a man in a dark suit and sunglasses?

    * was Robinson actually stopped from boarding a flight, or merely delayed (and, if so, for how long)?

  3. kennethrobinson2

    If Jen Robinson thinks that she is going to get an answer from the AG, she will have to wait for approval for the AG to say anything without the permission of her US controllers.
    This really stinks and shows how treacherous our political (both parties) are treating us peasants, and the big question is how much they cant, wont tell us about what looks like a subserviant bleak future.

  4. zut alors

    This incident is chilling.

    And, hey, what a surprise that the ‘inhibited’ terminology is endemic in the Dept [email protected] Security. Who would’ve guessed, none other than our close ally the USA.

  5. Pamela

    Well said.
    We take off our shoes, surrender our hand lotion, give up our water, remove our belts, get lined up and down and God help us if we joke about it.
    Surrender all reason at an airport while we submit to some senseless BOYS OWN CHARADE. Refuse at your peril.
    We have had beefy boys armed on our domestic flights without any evidence that Al Quaida have infiltrated Tasmania en route to the Gold Coast.

    As I stepped out of a plane at Cooloongatta last week, it was to a reception committee of 4 big burly cops at the doors and a phalanx of same lined up inside.
    Surely they would better serve the public interest out on the roads and streets than standing around watching weary travellers struggle on by with bags and kids in tow.
    REDICULOUS or as a 4 year old says DICULOUS DICULOUS!!

  6. davidk

    Just one more example of why we need Wikileaks. It represents our best hope of ever getting the truth about anything.

  7. Andybob

    So glad to know my homeland is secure from inhibited persons

  8. SBH

    Free from inhibitions, I spent Wednesday also free from the constraints of pants. Should I ensure access to Virgin aircraft with a similar approach in future?

    And how on earth did kennethrobinson2 get in here? He’s got the kinda name I don’t trust.

  9. mikeb

    Sorry to disagree with earlier commentators but if it takes a 100 burly guys in sunglasses to ensure I get to my destination in 1 piece then I’m happy to take on any inconvenience. The question is how did Robertson become a potential inhibited person – not the actions afterwards.

  10. lindsayb

    the question is “what can we do about it?”, when all the major parties in our bastardised western pseudo-democracies support the introduction of increasingly authoritarian control over our lives. The Occupy movement looked like it might have some chance for a while, until it disappeared in a shower of capsicum spray. Our governments seem determined to crush all forms of legitimate peaceful dissent, rather than address our legitimate concerns, making the appearance of less desirable forms of protest almost inevitable.

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