There is no aspect of Australia's refugee policy so tragic that the actions of the government cannot give it a farcical dimension. That's the situation with the desperately sad case of "Abyan" (not her real name), one of two Somali refugees allegedly raped in Nauru, initially denied the option of an abortion, and then flown to Australia -- and barely a day later flown out again without being given advice, counselling or the possibility of a termination. This "handling" of her represents a new stage in our tortured and torturous process of handling refugees, and our use of Nauru as a dependency for our convenience. Indeed it's a coming together of the two approaches: placeless people without a state, and any rights that might accrue from such, consigned to a place that has become stateless and subject to fiat, a shadow zone in the world order. Quite aside from anything else it represents a further transformation -- and degradation -- of Australian governance, of its own subjects as much as of "the others".
Rundle: the intolerable, impersonal cruelty of Nauru
This is a hands-off cruelty that sent "Abyan" back to an open prison without having received adequate medical treatment.