Monday, November 13, 2006

Downer's Dog Days

Poor Alexander Downer! His leash has been cut, he's about to receive the political equivalent of a snip from the vet, and everyone's trying to put him down.

It's bad enough that through the demise of the Bush Administration's power supply he's just been demoted from alsatian to poodle, but now that the the Democrats are about to control the US' own Australian Wheat Bribe investigations, he's just lost the "flea collar" of ministerial non-accountablility that he buried in Commissioner Terence Cole's terms of reference. No matter what Cole says when he hands down his findings in the next few weeks, Downer is about to be judged by the US Congress. Where Cole can't find Downer guilty of participating in one of the more heinous war crimes of the Iraq invasion. Democrat congressmen can, and probably will, banish him from the international political arena as punishment for his crimes.

Of particular interest to new inquiry chairmen is the Republican response to Australian requests to provide a smokescreen before the last Australian Federal election. Australian ambassador to the US Michael Thawley made a quiet plea that the investigation into Australian corruption be shelved to avoid any pre-poll embarrassment to PM Howard, and Bush's henchmen were happy to comply. Thawley was rewarded for his act of heroism by being made a Vice President of a mult-billion dollar pension fund.

I'll be interested to see how Thawley conducts himself in this matter. Will he fall on his sword by saying that it was his own idea to intercede, or will he reveal the chain of communication from Howard and Downer that would show the US public exactly who the war criminals are in this matter?

With another Australian election on the horizon, the likelihood of the matter being swept under the rug again is extremely negligible. Our PM may face a situation where he has to lose some of his key players in an attempt to maintain political survival. I predict there will be an empty kennel in the back yard a monogrammed bowl that is no longer licked. But late at night, when the moon is full and the wind is blowing in the right direction, perhaps you'll hear a howl.


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