‘Red Flag’ repeats many of the West’s favourite clichés about China and refuses to hold a mirror up to Australian policy-making. It fails to understand China’s rise and misrepresents the nature of power and empire.
While the slaughters continue in the United States, Australian gloating at our lack of mass shootings is more than a little misdirected. Tim Robertson explains.
By now, if you own a computer and have a reliable Internet connection (no mean feat in this wide brown land of the NBN) you’ve likely seen Stephen Fry’s fuck-you to god. If you’re one of those liberal atheists who favours pithy internet videos over books, is dismissive of anyone that tells you Sam Harris and Christopher Hitchens are most certainly not progressives, argues that Islamopobia is just neologism of the PC class and gets a kick out of calling yourself an anti-theist, then you were probably one of those people that shared it.
It’s become a matter of routine that every year the United States and China – from their respective positions of moral superiority – take part in a diplomatic tit-for-tat in which they each document the other’s human rights violations. In America, this takes the form of a State Department Country Report, which, incidentally, they issue for every nation. In China, the report’s published by the Information Office and runs in the state-owned Chinese and English-language newspapers.
As Australia follows the United States into another war in Iraq, independent journalist Tim Robertson asks, where is the United Nations while all this is going on?