Top dog under dog

March 19, 2008

tibet_blog_1A dog sits calmly, head turned towards a glow that emanates soft yellow. Does the dog understand what it is looking at?

Maybe to the dog, its just the tail end of that “giant dog in the sky” she howls at monthly. Maybe, maybe not.

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Or is cognition just the domain of humans? This, they say, is what separates humans from other animals because we can look at something, a photograph let’s say, and discern what is happening in that photograph. Us humans are supposedly intelligent enough and up to date on events and visual imagery to know that the “tail” in the above photo is the exhaust plume left behind by the space shuttle as it blasts into orbit.

We know these sort of things.

This week, Australia’s prime minister looked at several pictures of the Chinese military crushing monks and indigenous Tibetans where 80 to 100 people have been killed. Kevin Rudd’s response to what he saw put him below the intelligence of the dog.  He weakly urged “Chinese authorities to exercise restraint”, but condoned their actions by immediately adding the qualifier, “Australia has always recognised China’s sovereignty over Tibet”. In other words, Australia is not going to jeopardise its relationship with China with any demands to stop the cultural genocide happening in Tibet. Rudd doesn’t even have much bark, let alone any bite to his message of restraint.

Kevin Rudd says “The recent developments in Tibet are disturbing and the Australian Government has made its position known”. Well, Mr. Rudd, lap dog of the Chinese military, why don’t you tell the Australian citizenry what it is you actually said? Why such a compassionate less, bureaucratic response to the situation? Surely, the more than 20 YouTube videos coming out of China (before China blocked access to them) and the eye witness accounts from tourists within Tibet should be enough to put a little snarl on your lips.

Greens leader Bob Brown certainly has heart when he calls on Rudd to get some backbone. “Rudd has fallen in line with John Howard on China, that is, see no evil, because trade’s too important.”

What I have never been able to fathom about this trade issue is why the worry? Australia, as far as I can see, holds the trump cards. We have the ore, gas and coal that China desperately needs for the continuation of China’s economic growth. If Australia withholds its precious resources as an economic embargo, certainly China will sit up and take notice. Why, when China is so brutish to the indigenous people of Tibet, do we give them a piece of meat and then say, “Bad dog”?

So, Mr. Rudd, keep examining those photos coming in through secret government channels. Look carefully, start exercising your heart muscles and you just might mature into a global prime minister worthy of the job. To help you along, I’ll include one recently taken of an indigenous woman and child in the Amazon.—a defenceless woman being shoved and beaten by faceless, armoured authority.

Cultural genocide, whether in Australia, China or Brazil, needs more than just you to mouth, “I’m sorry”. Throw some meaningful weight behind your words.

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Sarah May 26, 2011 at 12:04 am

Who is this dog? She is so beautiful!

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