Tony Abbott: The man who would be PM — again

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(Image via theshovel.com.au)

David Tyler takes a look at Tony Abbott's slow and steady behind-the-scenes moves to be reinstated as Australia's PM.

 'TO KNOW HOW the world goes without America, look at Aleppo,' warns Tony Abbott in a bid to hitch his fortunes to the rising star of a new world order, President-elect, Donald Trump.  

Abbott appears in The Spectator, which also funded his trip to Birmingham last October for the UK Conservative conference, where he did a Brexit backflip and rated his own comeback.

He reckons he's “a reasonable chance” to be PM again. Unlike Turnbull, he is “popular with the party membership". Forget what he said about his leadership being "dead, buried and cremated", or the Abbott era being over. No-one got that in writing.

The plan, then, was that he would show his colossal support in the NSW Liberal Party State Council on October 22 with a call for “democratic reform” — a cloak for a conservative push from his Federal Electorate Commission (FEC).

It didn’t work but that won’t deter him. As he has famously observed, “shit happens”.

As Turnbull sinks lower in every Newspoll and as his government lurches from its Centrelink "robo-debt" crisis to its Sussan Ley travel catastrophe, Abbott is more than an outside chance.

Look at Aleppo? Abbott claims he’s quoting an Israeli intelligence bigwig, but he is also channelling Vladimir Putin and his puppet on a string — Donald Trump. Trump has just appointed pro-settler David Friedman as U.S. ambassador to Israel, while the international community repeatedly warns that the settlements are illegal.

Blaming Aleppo on the U.S. is absurd when Assad’s brutal, bloody war on his own people has been vastly boosted by help from Russia and Iran. Understanding the West’s failure to prevent the atrocity that is Aleppo is not helped by finger pointing at the U.S. alone.

When Bashar al-Assad killed over 1,300 of his people in a chemical-weapons attack in 2013, he crossed Obama’s self-imposed “red line,” Obama contemplated an air campaign to depose the Syrian dictator, but his plan was delayed when he chose to put it to a vote in Congress. It was thrown out altogether when Russia offered to dispose of Assad’s chemical-weapons arsenal if the U.S. refrained from launching air strikes.

Not that Abbott is bothered with the truth. The politician who joked to Tony Windsor, in Rob Oakeshott’s presence "the only thing I wouldn't do is sell my arse — but I'd have to give serious thought to it'', rarely lets fact impede his campaign. He is wooing the president-elect; attempting to jump the Trump.

Charles Krauthammer observation of Trump (another dangerous narcissist, sadly, madly out of his depth in public life) applies to Tony Abbott:

"The world outside himself has value – indeed exists – only insofar as it sustains and inflates him."

The man who would be PM, has just come back full of dangerous ideas from Albert Dadon’s Zionist lobbyist boot camp. He carries a torch for the mythical Aussie Light Horseman liberating Palestine from Ottoman oppression. Israel, today, seen in this light, is a model democracy. Allegations of Israeli apartheid, occupation, racial discrimination and the silencing of internal dissent are not even addressed.

Malcolm Roberts, One Nation’s empiricist, loves this type of stuff. He’s in the news too. We are “stabbing our ally in the front”, he reckons. Both MPs echo similar Zionist propaganda, but Abbott will do anything to have his old job back.

Abbott’s timing's good too, in peak silly season. Effortlessly, he grabs headlines with his call for Australia to cease its $40 million aid to Palestine in yet another shot at Turnbull's authority. Jumping The Donald, Abbott wants our embassy moved to Jerusalem.

Amazingly, he is in tune with the new U.S. Congress. Introducing a new bill, three Senators called for the U.S. embassy to be relocated to Jerusalem and recognising the city as the Israeli capital. Abbott must be psychic. Or have some inside dope.

Team Turnbull is far from impressed. An agile Julie Bishop soon slaps Abbott down. She’s tested by the Turnbull Government’s pro-Netanyahu Government move to oppose the recent UN resolution demanding an end to Israeli settlement building.

She huffs:

"The Australian Government does not have any plans to move the Australian Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem."

Or has it been caught out? It doesn't matter. Few will believe her. Her government has the world record for backflips, secrecy and denial.

Coalition Deputy Dawg, Barnyard Barnaby Joyce is whistled up to condemn Abbott's "continued public commentary." He concedes that it is unhelpful, serving only to underline Turnbull’s growing lack of authority.

Cory Bernardi may start the new Cory Tory party he’s threatened since 2014. George Christensen may split with him, despite Joyce backing him for a Cabinet role. Yet now even Bernardi accuses Abbott of self-interest and fostering division. Wrecker extraordinaire, Abbott, in turn, accuses Bernardi of wrecking and dividing.  

Our former PM, sniffing the wind on Arab-Israeli politics, returns to his sniper's mark, emboldened by the prospect of revenge. And the ruckus he's causing.

It's easy to take a public pot shot at Minister for Foreign Affairs Julie Bishop. He's having fun. He and Hockey used her foreign aid budget like an ATM when he was PM. In his own mind, he’s a bronzed Aussie on horseback riding to his party’s rescue. 

Abbott's a recruit to the Australia-Israel-UK Leadership Dialogue, a Zionist session run by his rightwing pal, millionaire Melbourne property developer and jazz guitarist, Albert Dadon, who regularly escorts Australian politicians to Israel.

Abbott's a regular of the Dadon circus, a version of which ran in 2010. Seventeen serving politicians took part  — a who's who of the political elite. 

Along for the 2016 group-hug photo is Opposition Leader Bill Shorten, who should know better, Minister for Trade Steven Ciobo and ten other Federal and state Parliamentarians.

With Dadon’s help, Abbott is a pro-Likud Zionist and the PM who so quickly became history himself is virtually a professional historian. The mix is heady.   

Others before Abbott have traded on an imagined spiritual bond between Australia and Israel forged by the charge of the Australian Light Horse against Turkish oppressors defending the town of Be’er Sheva in Palestine in 1917. It is a shameless misappropriation of the true history of the Light Horse to serve a narrow political end; cement Australian support in challenging The Palestinian Authority. It also dangerously elevates the role of war.

Historian David Hirst cautions:

'Despite the myth-making and re-writing of history by the hasbara merchants in Israeli PR, the dirty truth is that the diplomatic front was where political Zionism got its foot in the door of Palestine.'

Not only did the Charge of the Australian Zionist Horse Brigade deliver Damascus from the Turks, liberate Syria and join us to Benjamin Netanyahu’s foreign policy, the science of climate change is 'far less settled than most people think', Abbott says. It’s a throwaway and dangerous lie, but enough of a whistle to keep climate deniers interested.

An old campaigner knows how to make every post a winner.

Abbott, the dog-whistler of bigotry and division also shamelessly proclaims our multiculturalism bonds us with the cause of freedom, modern Israel — a distinction which he is happy to award on the inclusion of three individuals in the power elite:

"… long before we were taught to think of ourselves as a multicultural country, Jews had been Australia’s chief justice, army commander and head of state …"

A distinction which he is happy to award on the inclusion of three individuals in the power elite. This distinction, he claims, falsely, is shared only by Israel itself. Britain's Jews, for example, can proudly point to many distinguished figures in civilian and military.

Leaving aside his specious argument, that because we count a few individuals of Jewish origin or faith at the top of the tree means that Australian society is open and egalitarian, the parallel is soundly based in myth-information.

Sir Rufus Isaacs was the first Jewish Lord Chief Justice of England in 1913. In 1917, the 38th battalion of the Royal Fusiliers became the first Jewish battalion. Recruited from London’s East End, they included two future leaders of Israel, David Ben Gurion and Yitzhak Ben-Zvi.

But Abbott is less troubled by facts than with cementing his legitimacy, carving out a new role for himself and his nation as a herald for the rightwing of Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud Party right, which, encouraged also by Trump, is backing settlement threatening peace — its official two state policy solution with the Palestinians.

Perhaps it is unwise to inspect too closely Tony Abbott’s lazy grab bag of potentially incendiary rhetoric. But what is clear is that, while he is aligning Australia with Zionist policy and recruiting us to the hawks in the most dangerous volatile era of international politics we have yet encountered, he is positioning himself for another tilt at the leadership of his party. He knows that Malcolm Turnbull is history.

Above all, he is heartened by a view expressed when he announced he would be a contender. Party stalwarts said it would be hard to "sell" a new leader to the Liberal Party base.

A reinstatement of the former PM, with some powerful friends abroad, would, however, be a different proposition.

You can read more from David Tyler on his blog Urban Wronski Writes, or follow him on Twitter @urbanwronski.

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