* Yep, you guessed it, folks: its “Stinkfoot” again!
Kevin Rudd’s media defenders claimed in April that the increase in boat people could not be blamed on Kevin Rudd’s softening of our laws against illegal immigrants. Their argument: How could ignorant Afghanis, Iraqis and Sri Lankans have even known of Rudd’s changes?:
The ABC then claimed one asylum seeker told it Rudd’s “softening of asylum seeker policy . . . had no influence on his decision”. But a fuller transcript showed he’d denied nothing.
Again Rudd’s apologists tried. The ABC’sÂ Jon Faine, The Monthly’s Sally Warhaft, and The Sydney Morning Herald’s David MarrÂ agreed mere Afghans could never have known of Rudd’s changes
That argument was almost immediately challenged – by boat people themselves:
One (Iraqi) said he plans to attempt the boat journey even though his refugee status is already confirmed, because he has heard he is more likely to be accepted by Kevin Rudd’s Government than its predecessor….Â ”Kevin Rudd – he’s changed everything about refugee. If I go to Australia now, different, different,” a second asylum seeker told the ABC.
And today theÂ Herald SunÂ carried this interview with Iraqi asylum-seeker Yaser Mandalavi, in an Indonesian detention centre:
“Mr Howard made it very hard for refugees. He wouldn’t let me bring my family to Australia when I lived there. But I have been told (Rudd has) made it easier for people like me to come to Australia and to bring our families with us…”
After the Rudd Government scrapped TPVs, a people smuggler “mafia man” persuaded him to set sail.
”He told me the laws had been changed in Australia, and that Mr Rudd wanted refugees,” Mr Mandalavi said.