Thursday, August 24, 2006

COMMENT: Ruddock, Hicks & Fair Trial

On August 17, The Oz reported Australia's Federal Attorney-General Phillip Ruddock comparing David Hicks to “Middle Eastern boys who raped some girls in Sydney”.

“It's very interesting to hear those sorts of arguments in relation to David Hicks,” he told The Australian. “I don't hear them very often in relation to people who have been charged with serious criminal offences in some of our states. I am looking at the cases involving the Middle Eastern boys who raped some girls in Sydney. It was finally resolved about five years later.”

Mr Ruddock said yesterday he was not surprised that the Hicks case continued to attract supporters while the terror suspect remained in Guantanamo Bay, in Cuba.

“We saw it for a long time when we were in the Cold War with the former Soviet Union. There were people who joined a party, it was called the Communist Party,” he said.

“Yes, there will be some people who will say in relation to these matters until there's a trial or the evidence is out there, ‘perhaps this was an innocent lad who just happened to be seeing something of the world’.”

The comparisons makes little sense. The gang rapists weren’t denied natural justice. They were tried in an independent and open court of law, not a kangaroo military tribunal. They could not have been kept in custody without consideration of bail. They could receive regular visits from family members. They knew what they were being charged with and their lawyers were provided with a full brief of prosecution evidence.

David Hicks is receiving no natural justice. For years, he was held without charge. Much of the evidence that might convict him will be secret evidence that even his lawyers won’t have access to. He hardly gets to see his family. Guantanamo military tribunals aren’t open courts. I doubt the High Court of Australia pronounce NSW Court of Appeal procedures illegal or unconstitutional as the US Supreme Court has done with Guantanamo tribunals.

I’d love to see Mr Ruddock make such arguments to a gathering of lawyers. Before entering Parliament, Ruddock was a respected legal practitioner. Surely he of all people should know better than make such silly suggestions. Which begs the question: why are government ministers resorting to such non-arguments?

My theory is this. When facts and logic are against you, there’s nothing like a good dose of innuendo. The government’s treatment of David Hicks is an increasingly emotive issue in the electorate. Mixing David Hicks with all the emotion of gang-rapes and Middle Eastern nasties is an attempt to divert the electorate’s attention from the facts.

Ruddock is subtly reminding punters that David Hicks (or “Dawud Hicks” as Piers Akerman likes to call him, emphasising Hicks’ alleged adoption of an Arabic name) should be compared to gang rapists of the same religious background.

Or maybe he’s providing hints to those nasty Lebanese branch-stackers threatening his preselection.

I hate the Taliban. David Hicks was a dimwit for fighting with them. I also hate gang-rapists. But whether you're an enemy combatant or a sexual predator, you deserve a fair trial. Any lawyer denying this doesn’t deserve a practising certificate.

© Irfan Yusuf 2006

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Anonymous said...

You don't mention that he is an extreme islamist, caught fighting with the taliban.

Maybe that just seems normal and perfectly acceptable to you. Perhaps you deserve the same treatment.

Irfan said...

I also didn't mention that he at one stage fought with the Kosovo Liberation Army which was being funded and supported by the US and backed by NATO air power. Using your logic (or lack thereof), I guess that makes me pro-American.

Maha said...

Dear Anonymous

I wreckon you should check your eyes as the author has mentioned in his last paragraph what he thinks about it

But maybe it seems normal and perfectley acceptable to you only to read the parts that you like and disregard the rest of the article!

Augustus said...

Lets look at facts temporarily. I say temporarily because Irf, facts often don't feature in your rhetoric.

You talk of David Hicks' treatment by the Government. I assume you mean the Australian Government given your reference to Philip Ruddock, (of whom I assume you are now a fan given your new found fervour for all things Group).

Fact is, the Australian Government has not treated David Hicks in any manner good or bad and nor should they. Lets not forget that he was picked up as an enemy combatant by the United States Government.

Other than the fact that David Hicks has sought to not only devalue Australian Citizenship (much like yourself)but he has brought Australia into disrepute by his actions and associations.

Wake upt o yourself. This is Australia. My country. Our country. Love it or get the hell out. Show some patriotism for once. Alas you take as much pride in this country as you do your personal appearance and hygiene.

In verbum nostrum veritas.

Anonymous said...

Hey Augustus, is your surname Darby? It might explain the fact that you love America more than Australia.

Augustus said...

Anonymous 10.07am.

You idiot. Learn to read.

In verbum nostrum veritas

blogggit said...

Philip Ruduck has no feeling or empathy for anyone.When he returns from Canberra at the weekends he locks himself up in his den[DUNGEON] with his precious stamp collection.His daddy Max did not allow him to have any friends apart from his stamp collection.Daddy Max had all the right connections and when Philip graduated from Berowra Crematorium with a PHD in cadavers he went straight into politics.He is now in charge of ASIO among other things and has them scouring the world for Penny Blacks and "The Prowler."In trying to fix a spouse quota in Australia he certainly sounds mentally unbalanced.

PHILIP RUDDOCK is now Australia's Attorney General.Philip Ruddock is also known as the "Walking Cadaver."
The following is an article from the "Sydney Morning Herald"September, 17th, 1996.
The Government will cap and kill applications by Australians to bring their overseas spouses into Australia a move which would see long-term separations of married couples unless the Opposition allows through the Senate tough new measures to curb applications.
The Minister for Immigration, Mr Ruddock,said the draconian move,allowable under present law but never used in relation to spouses, would help curb huge increases in applications for spouses, some of which were shams, but others 'a fraud on Australians'.
Under present practise,applications for offshore spouses to come are allowed regardless of the quota set.Mr Ruddock wants to enforce his quota by a cap and queue regulation, making applicants after the qouta is reached to wait, possibly for months, until heading the queue for next years intake.
But in the face of Labor opposition in the Senate, he threatened to use his general cap and kill power to terminate applications made post-qouta.This would force Australians to apply again next year on equal terms with next year's applicants, causing indefinite separations.
Mr Ruddock's threat, which contradicts the Coalition's strong pro-family rhetoric but is part of a clampdown on migration numbers,was denounced by Labor's immigration spokeman, Mr Duncan Kerr, as social engineering.
The Opposition last week knocked off in the Senate one of several changes to regulations to tighten elegibility for 'preferential family' migration,available to spouses and aged parents.Mr Kerr told the Herald Labor would also disallow Mr Ruddock's 'cap and queue' regulation.
Mr Ruddock told the Herald that if people who had already applied were allowed in,the progam would overstep this year's 36,700 quota by about 13,000.Rather than allow an overshoot, he would use his general power under current law to cap and kill,unless Labor stopped trying to micro-manage his immigration program by disallowing regulations in the Senate.
Mr Kerr said that 'Australians have always exercised their own choice on who they'll marry,and I don't believe any red-blooded Australian will allow the Government to force couples to queue up to live together.Now he's saying if he can't queue them he'll cut them off.
'If you meet and marry in January,thats OK,but if you're a December bride or groom you mightn't be able to get your spouse in for years.'
Mr Ruddock said he did not regard cap and terminate as the best outcome, but if it is necessary I will be applying it.
He said Labor had maintained a steady 37,000 quota for four years,before lifting it last year to 50,000.Many people had reported partners 'walking out the door as soon as they arrive in Australia.' 'The fraud is being occasioned on Australians by people seeking to migrate,' he said.
Mr Kerr blamed the increase on the wash-up of the Tiananmen Square massacre,under which Labor granted 40,000 Chinese people refugee status.But Mr Ruddock said there rises in applications accross the board, and the percentage increase was as great in England."
JOHN HOWARD-The Lying Rodent.John Howard wants free trade but not the free movement of people.He thinks Australias biggest assets are its sheep, coal and uranium not people.He says he has the final solution to our problems "Too many people."
The Blacklist
"Philip Ruddock gazetted regulations when he was Australia's immigration minister[number S241 of 1997] to stop visitors from many countries coming to Australia and among them is Poland.[Israel is also on the list as well as the following countries-Bangladesh, Burma, Cambodia, Chile, China, Colombia, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Egypt, Fiji, Greece, Hungary, India, Iran, Jordan, Lebanon, Macedonia, Mauritius, Nauru, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Portugal, Romania, Samoa, Slovakia, Sri Lanka, Syria, Tonga, Turkey, Ukraine, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Vietnam and Yugoslavia]."
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