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The Greatest Crime single work   essay  
Issue Details: First known date: 2017... 2017 The Greatest Crime
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'In a recent chapter in a book about empathy, the South African-born historian Stephen Aschheim, who now lives in Israel, remarked that ‘atrocities, perhaps especially our own, are more acceptable when performed in distant places and acted upon ‘uncivilised’ populations… The closer to home that they are perpetrated, the more problematic they become.’ For decades now, Australia’s detention regime has effectively moved the government’s handling of asylum seekers out of sight – beyond the gaze of journalists, activists, lawyers and the public. This has enabled the government to lie about the people detained, using variations of the ‘uncivilised’ trope, without much fear of censure by the people themselves. And in an even more cynical twist, it has allowed successive governments to represent themselves as both muscular and fair, in standing firm with a policy that ‘stopped the boats’. But they haven’t stopped the boats and they haven’t stopped the deaths, they have just moved them out of our watch.' (Introduction)

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Last amended 17 Jul 2017 09:47:44 The Greatest Crimesmall AustLit logo Sydney Review of Books
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