|But Monsieur, it's only wafer thin!|
Busted-arsed pacific Island nation Nauru has hit the headlines
again with news of a hunger strike by failed asylum seekers, which your (ever
balanced) ABC reports has now been going on for a month.
Desperate people do desperate things, and the pro-asylum seeker groups are
clearly pretty desperate. Normally, of course, people who go on a hunger strike
lapse into a coma at 10-12 days, and die after three or four weeks.
So it really is make or break time. No-one has died yet, and unless they
can produce a corpse, then their credibility will get stinky really soon. The
occasional snack is apparently slipping through the the stitching on the lips.
Asylum seekers are well known for their hunger striking strategies, which seem
similar to smokers giving up the habit. Going on a hunger strike three times a
day (after breakfast, after lunch and after dinner) doesn't really qualify.
How seriously will people take claims of a hunger strike after two months?
At that time it will be pretty obvious that these people are cheating more than
the fat chicks at the
Jenny Craig clinic.
The bankrupt Nauru government has been pretty keen to take full advantage
of the fuss too - insisting that the strain on their medical resources is life
threatening, and they need more money. But a little bit of history helps to put
things into perspective here. Before their asylum seeker led recovery, Nauru
was in pretty dire straits. In particular, Australia was gently
threatening to refuse further treatment until Nauru payed their medical bills
(for services provided by Australia). The obesity levels amongst the Nauru
population don't exactly make for a healthy population.
Forgiving the debt and providing money for medical services was part of the
deal struck with Nauru for housing the asylum seekers, but that hasn't stopped
the politicking. Whining about imminent death may squeeze a few extra bucks out
of the Australian government, so it's worth a try.
Interestingly there has been no official request from Nauru - that
might open a full can of worms, and start a bidding war between busted-arsed
pacific nations. The corrupt Nauru government knows full well that they will
lose power if Australia takes their asylum seekers elsewhere and turns it's
back on the busted arsed country.
They may bark objectionably at any opportunity, but they are unlikely to
bite the hand that feeds them, and a stern word will reduce them to whimpering
dogs. They can't have their bone and eat it too.