Following my Commentary yesterday, further worrying reports/analyses have emerged in today’s media in regard to western policies on Islamic extremism.Note in particular:
- Today’s editorial in The Australian (see below) on the meeting of 24 Foreign Ministers in Paris last week-end points to “little sign of new tactical thinking, only words about the ‘urgency to renew and expand our collective endeavour’ and a restatement of the coalition’s commitment. That hardly reflects the gravity or the imminence of the challenge …”. The No 1 problem is Obama, of course;
- The suggestion by Foreign Editor Greg Sheridan (see below) that the Abbott Government is likely to be “much more radical and controversial in its approach to stripping Australian citizenship from dual nationals who pose a terrorist threat”. While Labor has given in-principle approval to cancelling the citizenship of those with dual nationalities (subject to first seeing the legislation), an approach that threatened a considerable number of citizens would undoubtedly create political controversy. It would require a clear argument and specifications distinguishing between “ordinary” citizens and those who constitute a “potentially serious threat” to Australians because of their connections with extremist Islamic groups. A requirement that ASIO is involved in one way or another seems likely;
- The article by Colin Rubenstein, Director of AIJAC, argues that, of Iran and IS, Iran is “ultimately the more dangerous of the two”. He suggests that the Iranian head of the Revolutionary Guards is already “widely regarded as the de facto ultimate arbiter of power” in Iraq and that Iran’s goal is to establish “hegemony as widely as it can”. It is difficult to see why Foreign Minister Bishop continues to attempt to establish a closer relationship with Iran, her latest venture being to suggest Iran attend last week-end’s conference.
- The decision by the Assistant Minister of Defence to appoint an imam to a religious advisory panel. Such an appointment is consistent with the Islamic policy of attempting to establish membership of government agencies.
Temperature Adjustments Don’t Work
In yesterday’s Commentary I referred to the “re-analysis” of thousands of temperature observations taken from oceans by the National Oceanographic Atmospheric Administration agency in the US and its conclusion that temperatures had not stopped rising in recent years.
Here is an extract from today’s report by SEEP (a US privately financed organisation of generally sceptical views). This suggests that there is no sound basis to the adjustments made by NOAA. In fact, NOAA made upwards adjustments to temperatures recorded by buoys in order, it claimed, to take account of differences between their accuracy and the accuracy of temperatures recorded by ships. Yet temperatures recorded by buoys are generally regarded as being more accurate than temperatures recorded by ships and NOAA gave no explanation of its upwards adjustments. As suggested, with Paris coming closer the accuracy of official data needs to be treated with scepticism, particularly where changes produce upwards adjustments.