The lunatic and the asylum seekers

John Key knew what he was talking about when he warned us that it was only a matter of time before a boatload of asylum seekers arrived on New Zealand’s shores. The opposition mocked him mercilessly, claiming that none of the boats would ever get this far. Everyone clearly forgot that, if boats full of migrants can reach Canada from Asia, then you can be sure they can make it to New Zealand. In truth, everyone was secretly counting on the Australians picking up any such boats first, before they reached our shores.

Jacinda ticked off Malcolm Turnbull for his ‘heartless’ attitude to the Manus Island migrants, completely forgetting that Australia prevents us from having the same problems. She was a virtue signaller extraordinaire. Now that it has been confirmed that an ocean-going vessel was indeed headed our way, she has a real dilemma. The time for virtue signalling is over. This from Stuff: Quote:

Last week, Malaysian Police intercepted a boat of 131?Sri Lankan asylum seekers, who authorities say were headed for New Zealand and Australia.

Malaysian authorities shouted about their good piece of policing work?from the rooftops, which brought the issue back into the limelight.?Air Vice Marshall Osborne praised his Malaysian counterparts for stopping the boat before it arrived in Australian waters.

“This was a much larger vessel than we’ve seen for some time. It certainly was a larger number of people involved. It also seems to have been far more complex and sophisticated.” End quote.

Credit: Luke

Can’t get here, huh? This was a converted tanker, carrying not oil but humans. Most tankers can circumnavigate the globe, if necessary. Quote:

Ardern clearly wants to deter people from illegally?trying to make it to New Zealand shores. She is aware anything she says will be used as marketing propaganda by people smugglers, and the Australian Government will benefit domestically by laying the blame at her feet.

And she won’t have forgotten the?bitter turn the trans-Tasman politicking?took, last time this issue was in the spotlight. Australian Immigration Minister Peter Dutton has no qualms about making Ardern’s Government the whipping boy again to score a domestic point or two. End quote.

Is she aware though? It is quite possible, even likely, that Jacinda Ardern has made the people smugglers sit up and take notice, by telling the world that New Zealand is a soft touch for illegal migrants. As so often happens, Jacinda never had the sense to think through her virtue signalling. She never realised what the consequences might be. Quote:

The Australians have long held a bee in their bonnet about Ardern’s vocal stance, in relation to New Zealand’s longstanding offer to home 150 refugees in Australian detention centres on Manus Island and Nauru.

When they’re forced to spend hundreds of millions of dollars protecting their waters on a defence strategy New Zealand benefit from, and New Zealand in turn takes a stance they believe is unhelpful, Australia clearly believes they have the higher ground. And there is leverage and power in confidence.

In reality, the talk over the Manus Island refugees has not significantly increased overseas chatter, but MFAT officials have advised anything said by the Prime Minister, or other politicians, would be used as propaganda to get people onto boats – always had been, always will be. End quote.

There are a lot of desperate people in the world, and a fair number of them would like to come here. By chastising the Australian government over the Manus Island refugees, Jacinda has sent a gilt-edged invitation to those who would like to try their luck in this part of the world. We will soon see the consequences of her naivety, as the boats will start arriving fairly soon. One or two small boats may have arrived already. Who knows? We have a big coastline.

One thing that Jacinda does know is that people smugglers are the scumbags of the Earth. They put people’s lives at terrible risk because, once they are paid, they put people in leaky boats and they don’t care what happens after that. The Australians came to realise that the only way people smugglers could be stopped was to refuse to accept ANY migrant boats at all. It worked. The boats stopped coming, and several thousand people a year were saved from a watery death in the seas around Australia. They may not be having a great life in their home countries, but at least they are alive. Not everyone was quite so fortunate.

Jacinda didn’t care about that. New to the world stage, she decided to send a message about how caring she was and tried to stick it to the Aussies. She had absolutely no idea what she was doing, but we may be about to see the consequences of her naivety. If another few thousand people die in leaky boats around the coastline of New Zealand, we will know who to blame. The student politician who thinks diplomacy is something you frame and hang on a wall.