Labor and media ‘gutless’ on Timor-Leste bugging scandal

Crikey readers put pressure on those staying silent on Witness K.

Crikey — Popular online news service.

Crikey

Popular online news service.

Bernard Collaery

Responses have been flooding in to Bernard Keane’s reports on the government’s prosecution of both Witness K and Bernard Collaery. This is in stark contrast to responses from Labor and the mainstream media…

On Australia’s Watergate moment

Jim Feehely writes: The bugging of the Timor-Leste negotiation team by our government is an outrage, for which nobody has suffered any consequences, legal or political. The attempted cover-up by both major political parties simply demonstrates how fragile our democracy is.

But the prosecution of Witness K and Bernard Collaery and the circumstances in which the Federal Police and the DPP seized evidence is beyond belief.  Our apparent collective disinterest in this Turnbull government’s path to a fascist police state has, I fear, the very real possibility of destroying Australian democracy beyond repair. With the opposition failing to address this critical matter (because of its complicity in the attempted cover-up, and the Murdoch media deliberately ignoring it, what hope do we have?

I cannot help make the sickening comparison with the torrent of outrage over cricketers sand-papering a ball with the reaction to this matter. The ball-tampering affair trashed our sporting reputation only. But apparently when Australian democracy is being trashed from within and we do not care.

Terry Aulich, former ALP Senator for Tasmania, writes: As a former chair of the ALP’s Caucus Legal and Admin Committee, I am ashamed that Australia carried out the venal bullying of a near neighbor. This is indeed a Watergate but, this time, some of the media has been gutless at a time when they are screeching about the Anti-Discrimination Act and freedom of the press. Words fail me about this cowardice, maybe they have also failed the Murdoch press.

Get Crikey FREE to your inbox every weekday morning with the Crikey Worm.

Barbara Lennon writes: It would be a joke if it wasn’t so serious. I cannot believe that more people are not standing up to do something about it… I can understand why the government wants to hobble GetUp! as it is the only outlet where people can have their views heard. Where are we heading?

Maggie Galley writes: I agree with you this situation is appalling. It’s another attack on whistleblowers and democracy. Keep this issue of poor democracy on your focus as if we don’t get the true news from somewhere we are going to be totally stuffed.

I think there is an arrogance of the Australian government that anything goes with our Asian and Pacific neighbours and this arrogance will come at our peril. Other nations deserve to be respected and their sovereignty also respected. 

Geoff Cohn writes: I joined the Labor Party with little enthusiasm, hoping that it was possible to influence the party from the inside to be a real opposition with policies not determined by Murdoch. Misplaced optimism. This shows them to be a shadow of the fascists. This is not justice. It is a travesty.

Send your comments, corrections, clarifications and cock-ups to [email protected]. We reserve the right to edit comments for length. Please include your full name.

3 comments

Leave a comment

3 thoughts on “Labor and media ‘gutless’ on Timor-Leste bugging scandal

  1. Kevin Stapleton

    The futility of attempting to halt via the ballot box, let alone reverse the many cuts to our democratic rights, on the road to abject slavery, has been demonstrated ad nauseum. We are in dire straits and only action by the individual in trying something new, gives any hope. Creativity is needed. Political parties have abandoned us to our fate. We need to respond in kind.

  2. AR

    The ballot or the bullet? They are mutually exclusive.

    1. Kevin Stapleton

      Neither new or creative. Reject parties through a coordinated campaign of suitably messaged informal votes. Look for ways to make life very uncomfortable for the status quo. Needs imaginative people to come up with new approaches.

Share this article with a friend

Just fill out the fields below and we'll send your friend a link to this article along with a message from you.

Your details

Your friend's details

Sending...