Nothing in this blog can be believed. If you think that anything in this blog is true or factual, you'll need to verify it from another source. Do you understand? No? Then read it again, and repeat this process, until you understand that you cannot sue me for anything you read here. Also, having been sucked into taking part in the mass-murder of more than 3 million Vietnamese people on behalf of U.S. Big Business "interests", I'm as mad as a cut snake (and broke) so it might be a bit silly to try to sue me anyway...

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Scott Parkin, counter recruitment, and ASIO...

Ok, by now, the readers of this blog (and no one else matters) will have figured out that the Australian Security and Intelligence (sic) Organisation (and what a sic organisation it is too) has declared that Scott Parkin was "a threat to the security of this nation." Like all of Scott's and nonviolence's supporters, I have been scratching my head over this, because I've always believed that ASIO, for all its faults and sins, generally does not make such assessments as disingenuously as our Prime Monster would like them to do...

And so I kept on going over what Scott's reported activities were whilst he was in this country, to see which of these activities might be justifiably interpreted as "a threat to national security." And I think maybe I've found one.

I believe that Scott ran foul of ASIO's charter due to his lectures mentioning a subject called "counter recruitment".

There has been a real drop-off in recruitment figures for the defence forces. This has got the Defence Department getting a bit paranoid. It can be interpreted as an area of national security. And anyone directly talking about something as directly aimed at recruitment as counter recruitment is, could justifiably be seen by ASIO as being a threat to national security.

I'll leave the debate about the rights and wrongs of this to other philosophers, I just wanted to understand why ASIO said what it (apparently) said. This line of thinking seems to offer me this understanding.

(It's been pointed out to me that Scott's counter recruitment strategies are generally aimed at Haliburton and other war profiteers, but I believe the actual term "counter recruitment" may have been enough to spook our spooks. They are, after all, in the business of being paranoid...)


Blogger Deirdre said...

What do you think of this idea? It was a deliberate and fantastically successful attempt by activists to draw attention to proposed terrorist laws, and to put a human (middle-class white) face into the role of "deportee".

Don't know whether this would be possible, though - is the Dept of Immigration open to being taunted or something? Could you get them to detain and deport at will? (Just musing, really...)

September 18, 2005 11:05 PM  
Blogger Gerry said...

I don't think much of that at all. It wasn't an attempt by activists - it was a deliberate action by ASIO.

You seem to be inferring that ASIO was manipulated by the activists. I reject that theory.

Nah, it was ASIO (from all reports) and they won't say why he was deemed to be "a threat to national security". So we are left guessing.

The above is my best guess.

September 18, 2005 11:14 PM  
Blogger Deirdre said...

Boo, you're no fun...
Let's say it wasn't an attempt by activists, then (you are - it pains me to say it - probably right). I think the upshot of it was actually helpful. Not for the man himself, obviously, but the story got a lot of publicity and managed to highlight the secrecy embedded in these laws. It's a shadowy world in there (I'm guessing).

September 22, 2005 7:53 PM  
Blogger Gerry said...

It's true, D, I'm no fun. I'm a grumpy old curmudgeon totally pissed off with the people and the governments they vote for. Hopefully I will soon be allowed to depart this intergallactic slagheap.

Yes it showed the public how a corrupt government can abuse these laws.

Also, I think it might have frightened a lot of ordinary people into thinking twice about taking part in future protests. This may also have been a motive.

How do we know how these machiavellian maniacs who control us are thinking?

But anyone who thinks it's for the "common good" and not primarily for the good of the mega-rich is absolutely in La La Land.

September 22, 2005 8:14 PM  
Blogger Guambat Stew said...

September 24, 2005 7:29 AM  
Blogger Gerry said...

Hey, Guambat, do me a favour. If you come in here just to drop some of your bat spam without even so much as a "nice blog" or perhaps a pertinent comment to go with it, at least have the nouse to wrap the link in tags so all we have to do is click on it. I know you'll figure out how to do that, because if you don't I'll hit the trashcan icon...

Do we understand each other now?

September 24, 2005 8:01 AM  
Blogger Iain Murray said...

Deported peace activist blameless

November 1, 2005

AN AMERICAN peace activist deported from Australia on the grounds he was a threat to national security was not involved in any dangerous or violent protests in Australia, ASIO revealed yesterday.

Scott Parkin, 36, from Houston, Texas, returned to the US in September after his visitor's visa was cancelled on the grounds he posed a national security risk. He was kept in solitary confinement by Australian Federal Police in Melbourne following an adverse security assessment by the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation.

ASIO chief Paul O'Sullivan denied his agency was pressured by the US into making the adverse assessment. Asked if Mr Parkin had been violent in Australia, Mr O'Sullivan said he had not.


November 03, 2005 2:37 PM  
Blogger Gerry said...

Thanks for that, Iain. I've been monitoring that story. But it does not address ASIO's assessment at all.

Until ASIO gives the reasons for its assessment and cites the evidence on which this assessment was made, the Age story that "Parkin is blameless" has no legs. It's a beat-up. It's based on the assumption that he was detained and deported for being involved in carrying out violent acts. As far as I know, ASIO has never accused him of this.

So, until ASIO reveals on what grounds it decided Parkin whas a "threat", we're all just guessing.

In my correspondence with the Attorney-General, Mr Ruddock has not actually claimed that Parkin had been violent. I'm awaiting a reply from him to this letter.

November 03, 2005 3:41 PM  

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