January 11, 2010AustraliaForeign Affairshuman securityIndiaSecurity

It’s caution, not obfuscation

An Australian view of the attacks on Indian students

This is an archived blog post from The Acorn.

Over at The Lowy Interpreter, Rory Medcalf writes:

Even if most of the violence against Indian students has been opportunistic street crime, some of it no doubt has had a racial edge. And if any of the latest attacks on Indians in Australia are proven to involve motives of ethnic prejudice, the governments in Canberra and — especially — Melbourne will need seriously to question their policy settings and statements.

It is difficult to explain to Indian friends that Australians typically are very cautious in the way that they talk about race and crime, for the very reason that we are proud of how far this country has come in recent decades in building ethnic harmony and equality. But this multiculturalism-induced silence is being interpreted in India as denial or obfuscation. [The Lowy Interpreter]In general, it is just as well that the Indian government is compelled to take the security of its citizens more seriously. Yet the focus on Australia distracts attention from the region that deserves a lot of it—the Gulf. As you read this around 100 Indian labourers find themselves in the refuge of a gurudwara in Kabul, after being at the receiving end of sharp business practices in Dubai. There’s no commotion at all in the Indian media.

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