The Asianisation of Australia: volume 1, section 14
Resistance to Asianisation
Very few people within the Australian Establishment have tried to speak out against our enforced enmeshment with Asia, however, some have expressed concerns over the idea, such as:
A 1989 editorial of The Sunday Herald, entitled "Asia: Our New Cultural Cringe", attacked the "recently discovered article of faith... that 'Australia is part of Asia' and our only hope of salvation lies in our enlisting as a small contingent in the mighty Asian army":
"It was not so long ago that some critical Australians used to castigate their compatriots over what they referred to as our "cultural cringe". It was alleged, not without some truth, that Australians showed a sycophantic deference towards British institutions and to a lesser extent, towards those of Western Europe and the United States. More recently, many of these critics have congratulated themselves and us on the decline of this phenomenon and our new sense of independence.
A 1992 column written by James Dunn (a former Australian ambassador) in The Bulletin gave the opinion that
"It, seems, however, we are now just as cringing as we ever might have been. The difference is that the subject of our veneration is Asia. This seems to be derived in part from an odd understanding of geography. Australia is not part of Asia. Italy, Greece, Spain and Portugal are all nearer to the Sahara than we are to Kowloon. England is a quarter of the distance from Mali that we are from Japan. Yet none of these countries has boasted that it is part of Africa.
"All the more baffling is the fact that this discovery of the proximity of Asia has come about as communications technology has reduced the significance of distance. It is as easy to send a fax to Stockholm, as it is to Singapore and to fly to London takes only a few hours longer than to Tokyo.
"The economic significance of Asia, and not only its north-eastern segment, has undoubtedly grown. Australia assuredly must have good commercial relations with it. We should try to improve our links with it. But it does not follow that Australia should try to become a part of Asia.
"...[the] argument that we need to increase Asian immigration if we wish to increase our trade with Asia is not convincing. Japan, South Korea and Taiwan have not found it necessary to import American, European and Australian immigrants in order to carry on international business. The idea that our future prosperity should be achieved by Japanese living in Australia dealing with Japanese living in Japan is a particularly self-abasing manifestation of the cultural cringe".(178)
"There is a lack of sophistication about the "Let's get closer to Asia" argument, not least because it is all about economic relationships and presupposes that our external economic links will expand if we become Asian in outlook - whatever that means... It represents a rather simplistic view of our options and is obviously designed to appeal to that section of the electorate which believes that our main foreign-policy concerns should be promoting trade and investment and making our work force internationally competitive... we must not, for the sake of getting on with Asia, devalue those principles which bear on the quality of our democracy and on international human rights...
Also in 1992, Hugh Morgan argued that
"Australia is not part of Asia. The most useful definition is of a predominantly European nation on the periphery of Asia. And the tantalising view of Asia as an economic powerhouse is a flawed generalisation. Fewer than 10% of its people enjoy standards of living commensurate with ours. Most of the rest of the 2800 million people between Pakistan and Japan live in conditions our poorest would find unacceptable. Half endure abject poverty while most live under the stifling weight of authoritarian rule. In our ASEAN neighbours we are looking at a region largely run by military regimes, most with poor human rights records. The Europe we are drifting away from has highly developed standards of human rights and social justice".(179)
"The idea of Asia, in the Australian mind, emphatically does not include Australia...
In 1994, Brian Toohey wrote of "the determination of Asian leaders such as Goh [Singapore's Prime Minister, Goh Chok Tong] to maintain a distinctive local cultural identity in ways which raise difficult issues for Australia's attempts to "enmesh" with Asia. Toohey further wrote:
"When we survey the Asian scene, beginning at India, and moving around South-East Asia, and up to Japan, we find many millions of people speaking English, we find many Christians of all sorts, we find cricket, soccer, golf, tennis and squash, but nowhere do we find the established political and legal institutions, the modes of thought, which we so highly value. Our habits of political discourse and argument; our manners towards our political opponents; our capacity to transfer power from one political elite to another without any violence whatsoever; our complete and wholly justified faith in the integrity and independence of our judiciary; these are the things which separate us from our Asian neighbours.
"It is these things which enable us to understand who we are and where we have come from. These are the things which provide us with the foundation upon which we can look at the rest of the world, trade with the world, talk confidently to the world and, in the final test, defend our territory against would-be invaders.
"Much of the current obsession with "Asia" is merely a manifestation of our continuing economic decline. As we slip further down the ladder of international competitiveness and prosperity, and as the nations of the West Pacific climb up and pass us on that ladder, it is perhaps not surprising that some of our political leaders should lose confidence in the people who have elected them to office...
"The time has come to throw off this nonsense. We can solve our problems; we can be the best in the world again, if we really want to be. But we have to understand ourselves as we really are, to have confidence in our ability to solve our problems, and not try to pretend to ourselves, and to the rest of the world, that we have something different. That way lies tragedy".(180)
"In a speech in Brisbane last week, the Prime Minister, Paul Keating, said that by the year 2000 he wanted Australia to be a country in which "our national culture is shaped by, and helps shape, the cultures around us".
In 1993 Graeme Campbell, Member of Parliament for Kalgoorlie, made some important points:
"Yet not a lot of thought has been given to what it is likely to mean to have our values increasingly shaped by Asia.
"There is a comfortable assumption that - as we become more enmeshed economically - Asian leaders will discover an irresistible desire to accommodate their cultural and political values to ones more in keeping with our notions of democracy.
"Speaking in Darwin last week, however, a former Australian ambassador to Indonesia and Japan, Rawdon Dalrymple, said that is was wrong to assume that economic success in Asia would lead to a corresponding embrace of liberal democratic values.
"Dalrymple said he expected that a Confusian style authoritarianism would prevail as Asian countries gained more confidence in the ability of their own "Cultural roots, values and traditions to explain economic success stories".
"As far as Asia's ruling elites are concerned, these traditions and values do not encompass the degree of political dissent, nor the relative generosity of the social safety nets, to which Australians have become accustomed.
"Both features of Australian society are likely to come under increased pressure as our values become more influenced by Asia...
"Australia's traditional social safety nets will come under increased stress as we enmesh with Asia.
"Likewise, there will be increased pressures to take a more quiescent approach on human rights, even though our long-term security interests may be best served by encouraging less authoritarian governments in our neighbourhood."(181)
"it needs to be stressed again and again that Australia is not a part of Asia. It is a separate and distinct nation-continent. We are unique and should be proud of our uniqueness.
Graeme Campbell (the Member of Parliament for Kalgoorlie since 1980) was ousted by the Labor Party for his outspoken views, and in a similar fashion the Liberal Party withdrew their endorsement for Pauline Hanson as their candidate for Oxley because of her outspoken views. Nonetheless, in the March 1996 federal elections, Graeme Campbell was re-elected, and Pauline Hanson won the seat of Oxley; both as independents.
"The challenge for Australia is to build on the best of its traditions, rather than - out of fear of being left alone in the big wide world - trying to artificially integrate with one section of it. Rather than redirecting towards Asia the colonial cringe and the cargo cult that have been features of our past we must have the faith to invest in our own people and resources.
"'Integration' with Asia will ensure that we are eternally a colony. An independent approach which meets our neighbours as independent equals is the way not only to international respect, but self-respect and self-confidence. These are issues of substance which have to be confronted if Australia is ever to fulfil its great potential".(182)
Pauline Hanson, in her maiden speech to parliament on 10 September 1996, said:
"Immigration and multiculturalism are issues that this government is trying to address but for far too long, ordinary Australians have been kept out of any debate by the major parties. I and most Australians want our immigration policy radically reviewed and that of multiculturalism abolished. I believe we are in danger of being swamped by Asians. Between 1984 and 1995, 40% of all migrants into this country were of Asian origin. They have their own culture and religion, form ghettos and do not assimilate. Of course, I will be called racist but if I can invite who I want into my home, then I should have the right to have a say in who comes into my country".(183)
The courage of Pauline Hanson and Graeme Campbell is to be applauded by all true-blue Australians. However; it should be noted that, all in all, very few prominent people have questioned the direction Australia is taking, in regard to Asia. Even fewer, more outspoken, people have opposed some aspects of our Asianisation. But so far, it appears that it is only the fledgling patriotic and nationalist organisations who will actually oppose the whole spectrum of our nation's Asianisation, and who advocate the steps to be taken to reverse this evil, undemocratic, anti-Australian process. It is to be hoped that more Australians will join those organisations, and/or that other groups will follow their lead. By reports received, it is apparent that such organisations are making gains, both in membership and organisational abilities.
It is time that all Australians make a stand against the Asianisation of our nation.
The Asianisation of Australia:
An Exposť of the "Asian Future" Being Forced Upon Australia (Volume 1)
Australian Nationalism Information Database - www.ausnatinfo.angelfire.com