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Torch shines a light on shameful hypocrisy

By Ari - 8 April 2008 62

Funnily enough for a man whose Government which pushed through a much heralded Human Rights Act, Chief Minister Jon Stanhope has not had much to say about China’s latest bout of repression in Tibet.

But he is worried about the potential effects of protests in Canberra sparked by the Chinese brutality.

“I haven’t slipped to that level of despair yet,” he said on ABC radio.

“I haven’t got to the point of despairing that the relay won’t be a wonderful celebration of the Olympic games, the Olympic spirit.”

Given that the torch relay was instituted by the Nazis for the 1936 Berlin games, perhaps it is a particularly apt tribute to the Olympic spirit, considering the totalitarian state hosting this year’s extravaganza. The idea chimed perfectly with the Nazi belief that classical Greece was an Aryan forerunner of the modern German Reich.

It is interesting that Stanhope would be in “despair” about protesters pointing out gross human rights abuses.

Perhaps its easier to posture when you’re not confronting a major trading partner. Oh, and of course Canberra and Beijing are sister cities. How sweet.

Stanhope: We had very positive feelings about the opportunities to present Canberra to strengthen our ties with Beijing, sister cities and through that, to celebrate the Olympic spirit, and I guess there’s a level of anxiety now in my breast and I think within the hearts of those involved with the organisation about whether we can achieve those objectives.

In the 7.30 Report item Rob de Castella complains: What I learnt from that is that the Olympics and sport is an easy mark. It’s easily exploited and manipulated by organisations or individuals with different agendas.

How disingenuous. The torch procession was instituted as an innately political act to bolster Hitler’s fantasies of an Aryan brotherhood. So it’s a bit rich to whinge about human rights protesters interrupting the smooth flow of its latest incarnation … a distateful piece of propaganda for the brutal Chinese regime.

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62 Responses to
Torch shines a light on shameful hypocrisy
Thumper 5:32 pm 08 Apr 08

Chinese paramilitary cops here in the ACT?

You must be bloody kidding? Since when did we come under marshall law?

This is unacceptable in Australia. Stanhope should go and take a good hard look at himself in the mirror. Human rights campaigner my arse.

Grow a pair Mr Stanhope and either tell the Chinese where to go with their paramilitary cops, or ban the torch run from the ACT.

Nothing less is acceptable.

And yeah, Rudd has, not surprisingly, run a mile from this.

Ari 5:09 pm 08 Apr 08
Ari 5:09 pm 08 Apr 08

… and the route’s been shortened in Canberra … Stanhope has caved in and will allow two flame “attendants” – i.e. the Chinese military – to help police on our streets … and Rudd/Gillard are running from being seen anywhere near the torch.

The ACT’s top cop says it would be unacceptable for the flame “attendants” to get physical with protesters. So if they do touch protesters we’ll surely see some assault prosecutions then?

Wide Boy Jake 5:09 pm 08 Apr 08

If anybody protests during the torch relay cut off their dole and lock them up until after the Games.

Ari 5:03 pm 08 Apr 08

It’s now being reported that Olympic chiefs are considering scrapping the torch relay for future Olympic Games. See:,23599,23506495-2,00.html

Thumper 4:26 pm 08 Apr 08

Same here GnT.

passive protest people, passive….

GnT 3:25 pm 08 Apr 08

I feel sorry for the poor joe bloes who thought they’d get a thrill by bearing the olympic torch, then get mobbed by protesters.

AussieGal83 3:04 pm 08 Apr 08

Does anyone know what the route will be through Canberra?

Also, I’m just waiting for the Tibetan Australia Council to release some information on how you can participate in the planned protests, will post when it becomes available.

Mr Evil 3:03 pm 08 Apr 08

I blame global warming (for the lack of highlighting).

Ari 3:01 pm 08 Apr 08

Yeah, they are highlighted (sort of) now. But they weren’t for a little while there.

Mr Evil 2:56 pm 08 Apr 08

Ari, the highlights are working – it’s just they are a blue that is close to being a dark grey, so they don’t stand out to well.

Mr Evil 2:54 pm 08 Apr 08

If Kevin just says sorry to all the Tibetans, then everything will be all okay?

Ari 2:54 pm 08 Apr 08

For some reason the links in the text are not being highlighted. They still work, though, if you find them.

[Ed. its on the to do list to try and differentiate them a bit more. dark blue and black isnt always easy to tell apart on a dodgy monitor]

S4anta 2:51 pm 08 Apr 08

This whole protest really gets my goat. The point of the Olympics is to bury the hatchet for a few weeks, and revel in the global unification that is the watching sports such as synchronised swimming, ping pong and the hammer throw.

Putting my usual zealous writing for Amnesty aside for second, I do beleive that these protestors need to pull their heads in, listen to the Dalai Lama and find a more apt and appropriate venue to voice their distaste at the current Chinese occupation of Tibet. And thats even before I get wound up about the effects of these little States (Kosovo being the other)on the Global economies and wasted international funding to establish a country that would be far better off just toughing it out unified with their stronger, and wealthier neighbours.

Crikey 2:50 pm 08 Apr 08

The Beijing Olympics and, through it the torch relay, will flush-out Stanhope’s and Rudd’s hypocrisy re their human rights credentials.

Both are pro-human rights accept when it interferes with their own pro-China stance.

Rudd said he is considering an offer from Beijing to host him and his family at the opening ceremony. So he and his family can prance the world stage and live it up at the Olympics while minority groups in China continued to be persecuted.

The grand human rights advocate, Stanhope wants the glory of the Olympic torch making its way around Canberra while human rights are exterminated in China. Perhaps we should ask Stanhope and Rudd if they would consider a replicate Olympic torch be placed around the lake for every Chinese citizen that has been murdered by the Chinese government in their bid for freedom and human rights – ala the Siev X memorial.

Comrades Rudd and Stanhope would never entertain any measure that may upset their mates in Beijing.

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