Andrew BoltÂ finds the PM’s lack of frankness disappointing. It looks as though Tony Abbott hasn’t gotÂ Tayyip Erdogan’s memo thatÂ Â assimilation is a crime against humanity.
Tony Abbott is picking his fights. One he is dodging – at least publicly – is on immigration and Muslim integration. From AB’s interview with him:
AB:Â Our population is growing by about 1 million every three years, mainly through immigration.Â Does that make sense to you when our cities seem to not to be coping?
PM:Â One of the tasks that we have as a nation is to give ourselves the infrastructure and the amenities necessary to cope with the population that we’ve got or we can reasonably anticipate having.
AB:Â It doesn’t seem to be happening.
PM:Â Well, it wasn’t happening, but it must start to happen.
AB:Â And if it doesn’t shouldn’t we stop immigration?
PM:Â Well, I’m confident that we can do it, Andrew.
AB:Â Are you worried at all about the difficulty of integrating some people in the community?
PM:Â There’s no doubt that if you’re a professor of history from New Delhi you’re going to integrate faster than a slum dweller from Glasgow.Â There’s no doubt about that.
AB:Â There’s also no doubt that you’re dancing around the fact that there are are communities that are having trouble integrating.
PM:Â One of the great things about Australia is that we encourage people, indeed we expect people, who come to this country to leave their ethnic animosities behind them.
AB:Â But they are failing to in some cases.
TA: We encouraged the English and the Irish to leave their sectarian and other animosity behind them…
AB: But they didn’t have suicide bombers.
TM: … and we largely succeeded.Â Ditto, we would encourage the Tamils and the Singhalese to leave their animosities behind them.Â And, frankly, if people come to this country with a kind of a millenarian religious approach…
AB: But some do. I just want to know what we do about that.
TA: … we would encourage them to quickly forget that.
AB: We are already encouraging them. That’s not the point.
TA: But, we shouldn’t assume that just because someone is a Belfast Irishman that he’s going to want to…
AB:Â No one is assuming that but ASIO has said that there are a number of Australians …
PM:Â … that there’s some hatred of Australia’s monarchical institutions and something like that.
AB:Â But we’ve got a score of people in jail from one particular group for terrorism offences against Australians. It’s more than whether you don’t like the monarchy.
PM:Â Yeah, but it would be a big mistake for anyone in authority in Australia to suggest that people might be citizens second, and adherents of a a particular faith first, because nothing could be more guaranteed to hinder the integration and ultimately the assimilation of such people.
I have to say there was a lack of frankness there I found disappointing, even if politic.
Police are bracing for the possibility of tit-for-tat shootings after the cousin of Brothers for Life founder Bassam Hamzy was shot dead in Sydney’s south-west.
Brothers for Life member Mahmoud Hamzy, 25, was fatally gunned down in a Revesby Heights garage just after 12.30am on Tuesday, police said. His friend, Omar Ajaj, 24, was in intensive care on Tuesday night after he was shot in the leg and stomach.