Abbott’s naivete over Abe’s apologism stains Australia’s reputation

By Hu Wenlong Source:Global Times Published: 2014-7-14 19:28:01

During Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's three-day tour of Australia last week, Tony Abbott, his Australian counterpart, highly appreciated Tokyo's lifting the ban on the exercise of the right to collective self-defense and acted as a defender for Abe.

It is beyond understanding that an Australian and in particular the prime minister took such a political stance.

Abbott said, "We admired the skill and the sense of honor that they brought to their task although we disagreed with what they did."

It is known to all that WWII in the Pacific, waged by imperial Japanese army troops, not only threw China and other countries into an abyss of catastrophes, but also brought about heavy losses to Australia.

Japan flew 64 raids on Darwin during the brutal war, dropping more bombs than it did to Pearl Harbor of the US. Some 17,000 Australian soldiers died in the war.

So what is the skill of the Japanese and what is the honor that they brought to their task? Undoubtedly it is the bushido spirit of starting an undeclared war, treachery and enormity.

All countries and people with a sense of justice will abhor such a skill and spirit.

Therefore it is indeed humiliating that Abbott showed extreme admiration and imposed his opinion on all Australians.

During Abe's visit to Australia this time, the two sides signed the Japan-Australia Economic Partnership Agreement and the pact on the transfer of defense equipment, a gift to Abbott who has been in office for less than one year and yearned to make achievements during his tenure.

Nevertheless, Abbott's response to Abe has gone beyond the bottom line.

Abbott heaped praise upon Tokyo's allowing for collective self-defense because people and leaders always refused to let history destroy the future, as he claimed.

Doesn't Abbott know the crimes Japan committed during WWII? Well it seems not. The only explanation is that he believed Abe's expressions to cover up Japan's wartime misdeeds, which was conspicuously a game of words played by this rabid right-wing nationalist.

China is the largest trade partner of Australia, and Abbott is not so foolish as to offend Beijing. He claimed in his remarks, "Ours is not a partnership against anyone."

If he aimed at striking a balance, then it was the clumsiest balancing act.

Apparently, Abbott is not so wise as to make the choice most beneficial to Australia. In addition, in his eyes, Chinese people are too naïve. Even Australian media outlets have noticed his siding with Japan against China. How could the Chinese simply turn a blind eye to it?

In the final analysis, Japan and Australia are two anchors of the US "pivot to Asia" strategy, and cannot jump out of the overall framework designed by Washington despite a big space for them to make choices.

Since there are neither territorial disputes nor historical grudges between China and Australia, it is difficult for people with normal thinking patterns to comprehend why Abbott has come to the forefront in targeting China.

If it was a thoughtless act, then we expect a full explanation from him. But if it was intentional, he will incur substantial losses to the interests of his own country.

Is Australia more important to China than China to Australia? If Abbott has a naïve judgment, he should go right ahead.

The author is a permanent member of the Chinese Military Culture Society.

Posted in: Viewpoint

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