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Harsh new laws to hit Pine Gap protesters

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posted on Mar, 15 2009 @ 03:58 AM
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Harsh new laws to hit Pine Gap protesters


www.smh.com.au



THE Federal Government has quietly beefed up laws protecting the US spy station Pine Gap, ensuring protesters face seven years' jail if they go near or photograph the intelligence-gathering facility.

The new law puts the US-controlled Alice Springs spy station further outside the scrutiny of the Australian Parliament and silences critics from legally arguing whether the base is in Australia's defence interests. The Rudd Government slipped the amendment into a miscellaneous defence bill on Wednesday.

The Pine Gap amendments were drafted by the Howard government after it failed to successfully prosecute four Christian pacifists who protested at Pine Gap in 2005.

For the first time in history, the then attorney-general Philip Ruddock tried to use the Defence (Special Undertakings) Act to prosecute the foursome for entering a "prohibited area".

Jim Dowling, Adele Goldie, Donna Mulhearn and Bryan Law were tried and convicted in the Northern Territory Supreme Court in June 2007. They faced seven years' jail but were acquitted on appeal in February last year.

The Court of Criminal Appeal found that, under the act, any person charged was entitled to challenge at trial whether or not the declaration of a "prohibited area" was necessary for the purposes of the defence of Australia.

The amendment passed last week, which defines the Pine Gap facility as a "special defence undertaking" and a "prohibited area" necessary for the defence of Australia, strips away that legal entitlement.

Greens senator Scott Ludlam said: "It is very unfortunate that Attorney-General Robert McClelland has followed his predecessor's lead, finishing what Ruddock started by amending the law to further crack down on peaceful protest."

He described the amendments as "retrospective revenge" designed to "punish and frighten those thinking about engaging in non-violent resistance against Pine Gap's role in war-making".

Defence Minister Joel Fitzgibbon said the amendment would "deter mischief-makers and those with more sinister intent".
(visit the link for the full news article)




posted on Mar, 15 2009 @ 03:58 AM
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Here we go again, this time in Australia where Pine Gap is a US spy station set up in the middle of our desert here. The government is cracking down on peaceful protests by enacting law protecting the Pine Gap under "special defence undertaking" and "prohibited area" laws.


The amendment passed last week, which defines the Pine Gap facility as a "special defence undertaking" and a "prohibited area" necessary for the defence of Australia, strips away that legal entitlement.


I was under the impression that Pine Gap didn't report to the Australian Govt and I seem to remember controversy surrounding that fact. So how can this be for the defence of Australia when we apparently do not get a say in what goes on there?

Sounds like bollocks to me.

www.smh.com.au
(visit the link for the full news article)

[edit on 15/3/2009 by QuantumAlien]



posted on Mar, 15 2009 @ 04:06 AM
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That is ridiculous, 7 years?!?!?!
I can believe that it's all come to this, we are being screwed on a global level.



posted on Mar, 15 2009 @ 05:57 AM
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Note that the Krudd government pushed this law through.

The sheeple honestly thought that Krudd would be a welcome change from Howard... yeah, right... not.

There's too much to hide at Pine Gap, nothing to see there, move along.



posted on Mar, 15 2009 @ 08:03 AM
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It seems that they are really fearful of you or anyone finding out what they are doing there!
And I bet that your government get info and data from Pine Gap or they would not have stated it like they did.
Someone will slip up one of these days and the word will get out , then you will get to see government people all standing in line saying , I did not know that, why if I had known that I would have done something.



posted on Mar, 15 2009 @ 08:24 AM
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Australia is probably required to ensure the integrity of external security at Pine Gap, likely under secret codicil to the UKUSA agreement.

Small things like the will and opinion of the public are irrelevant to that obligation.



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