Wednesday, 29 August 2007

Stalag Sydney

What you are seeing here is Sydney Harbour in preparation for APEC. Normally, visitors to Sydney are able to walk right up to the edge of the harbor and gaze out over the water, watching the numerous vessels passing by or to have their photo taken with the bridge or the house in the background. During APEC this is not an option, unless you have passed through a security check-point in the 2.8 metre high fence that will enclose Sydney for the duration of the summit.

In a recent post, I mentioned a number of the security measures and blatant disregard for the rights of Australian citizens being imposed in Sydney during APEC. Allow me to add a few more which have come to light since that post:

- People arrested during APEC will not be granted bail until the summit has finished

- Residents of certain suburbs will not be allowed to park their cars out front of their own houses

- The police have the right to stop, search and expel anyone from APEC restricted zones, including Bondi Beach

- Sydney-siders and visitors are being told they aren't welcome to watch fireworks over the harbour

All this because a handful of so-called leaders can't do their jobs properly. For fuck's sake, if you're so fuckin scared that people hate you that much, teleconference. Some of us have lives to live here.

On a lighter note, in true Aussie style, the SMH has posted this Aussie George Dress Up in honor of the royal shrub's visit. Personally, I think he makes a great Dame Edna (kudos to Colin).

Songs played while writing this entry:
"Release" Pearl Jam
"Holiday" Weezer
"Elctris" Woody McBride
"Come & Die" Therapy? & Fatal
"Judgement Night" Biohazard & Onyx
"THX" Paddee
"The State We're In" The Chemical Brothers
"Emulator" Rotortype
"Breakfast At Sweethearts" Cold Chisel
"Speedway" The Prodigy


Sea Eagle said...

Great post. As a resident of Redfern, the fact that my beautiful city will be very much off-limits to supposedly free citizens really pisses me off.

What I am also dreading is the 24-hour helicopter cover during the summit. There are going to be a lot of inner-city residents who will be getting sleepless nights due to the constant noise.

Maybe the countries of APEC should all join together and designate a special island where it will be held every year. After all, these leaders are supposed to be working, not tourists. So lock them up on a secure island without distractions and they will probably get a lot more done. Some say they need access to business leaders etc. With the money saved on security summit participants could be flown there and it would probably save a packet.

Sephyroth said...

Hi, I'm reading via the BumpZEE Australian Blogs Community RSS Feed. :)

According to the APEC website, hosting it in Sydney will show be " exceptional opportunity for Sydney to remind the world it is a safe and friendly city." safe that you have to put in all these restrictions, and put up a 2m high fence? Who are they kidding?

I like Sea Eagle's idea of the special island; why not just host it in the middle of nowhere? Have them all hosted in a tent. Even better, how about a cruise ship? There should be enough staterooms there to accommodate all the necessary people... ;)


Xavier Forrest said...

The concept of global meetings has really evolved. WTO made them realize that meetings in places with human rights was a bad idea, prompting them to meet in places like Doha where nobody had rights (especially to protest). Then they decided to have them in places like Genoa where there are human rights, but they could reduce the number of people exercising those rights by closing the borders to anybody interesting. Now, they're back to being able to have them in supposedly democratic places, and all they have to do is create mobile gulags and take everybody's rights away until they feel like giving them back. And they stick Ann Fulwood on the front of it just to add idiot to injury.

Found your BS through Green Porridge ;)

thought you might like

c ya!

flametree said...

So to those ispiring, witty, thought-provoking, creative, sarcastic, soul-searching, and some times scary writers - I offer my humble apologies. You all provide incredible insights into your worlds by sharing your thoughts and feelings in your own unique styles. Thank you for being not only great writers, but also great readers.

Part 4 here:

Louise said...

this stuff just makes me so angry!, supposedly we have the right to protest in this country, the presumtion of innocence and the freedom to walk on our own streets!

great post, someones got to shine a light on this b/s that many aussies seem to be unaware of..

goldcoaster said...

great post. I find these summit meetings amazing in what changes they force on the community. Why not shove them all into parliment house for the few days.

Ron Davison said...

I like sea eagle's idea of the island for the conference. Even better, we could send the world leaders off to this remote island permanently. It really is amazing how backwards this is - in a democracy, aren't leaders supposed to subordinate to the people?

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