Nothing easier than for discreet Abbott to blame Labor

Posted on Sun 11/24/2013 by


Bolt New 01 By Andrew Bolt  ~ 


The strange thing about Labor’s demand that Tony Abbott apologise for our spying on Indonesia is that nothing could be easier or more tempting for him than damning what Labor did, as Sam Maiden points out:

KEVIN Rudd was conspicuously absent from the furore over revelations Australia tapped the phone of Indonesia’s President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono…

As prime minister at the time, Rudd was responsible for Australia’s Office of National Assessments which would have analysed the material… He even built a $14 million bunker adjacent to cabinet, similar to the White House’s “situation room”, where he could have secure communications with foreign officials and spy chiefs.

It remains entirely possible that he signed off on the SBY surveillance himself…

After running around before the election warning Konfrontasi with the Indonesians would ensue if Tony Abbott was elected prime minister and tried to turn back the boats it’s the former government’s phone taps that are causing the blow-up…

But it’s not hard to establish who may have been in the loop because there’s a clear protocol for signing off on such operations. It would have involved a combination of the prime minister, foreign minister, defence minister and attorney-general of the time… Which makes Julia Gillard’s intervention on Friday, when she offered Tony Abbott ­advice on how to resolve the troubles with Indonesia, curious. As deputy prime minister she would have sat on the ­National Security Committee of cabinet at the time of the ­alleged phone taps.

Does she propose to both sign off on the phone taps as a government and then provide public advice on CNN about how to clean up the mess in her new role as a roving international ambassador? How odd.

(Thanks to reader Peter of Bellevue Hill.)

Andrew Bolt is a journalist and columnist writing for The Herald Sun in Melbourne Victoria Australia.

Andrew Bolt’s columns appear in Melbourne’s Herald Sun, Sydney’s Daily Telegraph and Adelaide’s Advertiser. He runs the most-read political blog in Australia and hosts Channel 10’s The Bolt Report each Sunday at 10am. He is also heard from Monday to Friday at 8am on the breakfast show of radio station MTR 1377, and his book  Still Not Sorry remains very widely read.

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