When I titled the inter-ethnic violence in Sydney turning into a religious war, with churches being attacked, I used the term ‘metamorphosis’ to indicate the change or conversion. I even numbered it as (1) as I have another article of change in mind.
See Metamorphosis (1) - Race War into Religious War
Then I saw this news article on John Howard and his changing public pronouncements over a number of years, and wonder whether this posting on that article deserves the title ‘Metamorphosis (2)’. But I reckon no, as Howard's change is more chameleon-like rather than a real change.
I leave it to you to read the article and judge for yourself its criticism of Howard.
However, there is one item from it that I want to raise – namely that of his unhappy disagreement with former Aussie Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser’s ban of refuelling for an aircraft carrying the South African rugby team, the Springbok, to New Zealand in 1981. At that time, South Africa had a white supremacist regime practicing the heinous racist Apartheid policy. Malcolm Fraser was morally right to disassociate Australia from such an evil regime.
Additionally, Fraser's decision was in complete commitment to the Commonwealth's Gleneagles Agreement, which Commonwealth members signed to form a united stand against racism, by not having sporting contacts with evil regimes like Apartheid South Africa. Unfortunately Howard then didn’t share his commitment, and even objected to economic sanctions against the Nazi-like Afrikaan government.
Yet recently, the most strident objectors to New Zealand and Aussie cricket teams playing in Zimbabwe have been the governments of New Zealand, Australia and Britain. President Mugabe of Zimbabwe has adopted the policies of his predecessor, Ian Smith, in practising the evil discriminations that blacks had previously suffered from.
Of the 3, New Zealand had been the one most obdurate in maintaining sporting links with white supremacist South Africa and Ian Smith’s Rhodesia (today’s Zimbabwe). In Australia there were many personalities too, like John Howard, who supported the continuation of sporting and other links with those two international pariahs.
The hypocrisy and double standards have been breathtaking, though in New Zealand’s case, one could argue that the current Labour government of Helen Clarke is certainly not that of Robert Muldoon’s conservative National Party.
Now, we know why there is the English homily of “What’s good for the goose ought to be good for the gander”, which existence ironically proves that it’s seldom applied.
It's Not Cricket, Old Boy, It's too Black & White!