Letter to SMH re Pine Gap

Dear Editor,
After being arrested around 5 times at the gates of Pine Gap since 1987 it comes as no surprise that intelligence gifted to Australia is first filtered through US eyes only. The revelations in today’s SMH 26/4/18 The Secret Room closed off to Australia show that ‘in many countries (Australia especially) around the world, the public remains in the dark regarding surveillance powers and capabilities”. We, the peace movement and the Australian Anti-Bases Campaign always claimed that the base was a wholly US affair and only crumbs of information were sometimes shared with Australia. Nevertheless as the SMH article shows Foreign Minister and Prime Minister from the 80’s up to the present have maintained the fiction that they knew all about the facility and it was in fact a ‘Joint’ facility. Stephen Smith (Foreign Minister in the Rudd Government) even went so far as to say ‘there are no US bases in Australia’.
The conclusion for all fair minded Australian is ‘Close Pine Gap’ or to become complicit in war crimes committed by this base over which we have no control. Already human rights activists in Pakistan are agitating for a court case to sue Australia for its cooperation with the Obama drone program.
We can only repeat what has been said many times over the last 60 years “US Bases out now!”
Yours sincerely

Denis Doherty
Coordinator Australian Anti-Bases Campaign

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