A form of kidnap, torment and piracy
The Age : We should accept Tamils
BOB ELLIS, October 16, 2009
It is hard to see why we won’t take these Tamils. They are fugitives from a lost civil war, recent massacres and the threat of genocide. They are beautiful, intelligent and English-speaking. There are no Tamil triads menacing western Sydney. There are few Tamils in our gaols. One of our most successful citizens is a Tamil. His name is Kamahl.
Yet we think it better they starve to death rather than come here. We have subjected them to rendition in a country that does not recognise their rights under the Geneva Convention. We treat them as the English treated fugitive Jews in 1941. Just go away, they said, go away. Go back to Germany. Go now.
It is certain that if processed here they would be admitted. It is certain that their cause is just. So with Kafka logic they must not be admitted, lest their just cause bring them just reward. Philip Ruddock could not have expressed it better.
It is said that their journey is ‘illegal’ though it is not. Anyone fleeing persecution can flee anywhere to avoid it, under international law. It is said they are ‘economic migrants’ but it is hard to say which migrants are not. All seek a better life for their children. How is this contemptible, or even unusual? Why does it merit the death penalty? More