Are the Five Eyes blind to racism?

Rampant rise of anti-Asian racism across the Five Eyes, and other western nations, must be reined in for world peace

8 July 2021 | CCCA (Image: Marcus Reubenstein)

A supposedly scholarly opinion on covid-19, authored by Louisa Lim appeared in the SMH on 28 June 2021.  The re

The Guardian has reported “Attacks makes Vancouver, the ‘anti-Asian hate crime capital of North America’. 

The article revealed that Vancouver the “most Asian city outside Asia”, has experienced a 717% increase in anti-Asian hate crimes, reflecting a legacy of discrimination in a country seen as welcoming of newcomers. 

Similar reports appeared in Bloomberg in both print and video, as well the National Post.

In Australia, incidence of anti-Asian incidence has been reported under the headline of:

Spat at, sneezed on and told to go ‘home’: how racism against Asian Australians has escalated. 

The Washington Post has cited Australian in saying anti-Asian hate crime not just an American phenomena.  At the start of the coronavirus pandemic, two sisters of Asian background were attacked in the inner western Sydney suburb of Marrickville, which is home to a large Vietnamese Australian community.

ABC Television has reported on the findings of the Lowy Institute that one in five Chinese Australians say they have been threatened or attacked in past year. While Dr. Tony Pun OAM has also reported extensively on this issue.  

In the UK, an increase in Asian hate crime has been reported on by the BBC. While a medical student named Jason Diong produced a video chronicling a wave of online Asian hate messages coinciding with the start of Lunar New Year.  

In New Zealand, RNZ reported the story of a fifth generation Cambodian-New Zealander and her experience with racism. While in March, a large Stop Asian Hate rally was held in Auckland.

In the US, as reported by Al Jazeera America, a Filipino-America man was victim of a knife attack on a train, he told the broadcaster that he’s shouted for help but other passengers ignored. Major US television network, NBC reported attacks under the simple headline, “The Racism Virus.”  

All these reports in the 5 eyes countries have the following commonality: 

(1) They have a significant proportion of Asian population with the Chinese as majority. 

(2) They have anti-discrimination legislations to cater for their brand of “multiculturalism” – melting pot style (Australia, NZ, Canada,  UK) or melting point (US). 

(3)  They are English speaking countries and military allies (the Five Eyes) and some of their political leaders play the racial cards for domestic politics gains. 

(4)  UK, Australian and Canada are allied with US policy of containment tightly whilst NZ is “not as tight”, 

(5)  The stress and trauma of the Asian community in these countries are bearable at the moment because there still a majority of “White” population who are against any form of racism.  With these empathetic fellow citizens, we hope to turn thing around by putting the message to the nation that 

(i)  Racism is not conducive to social cohesion and community harmony and would not be in our national interest to have a non-unity citizenry. 

(ii)  Anti-Asian sentiments in these countries if unstopped, will ultimately polarize the world into Asian vs Anglophiles; and if carried to the extreme, will see a conflict between Asia and the Anglo world. 

For these reasons, it has been argued that there is an urgent need for an international think tank to counter racism.

Australia’s Race Discrimination Commissioner, Chin Tan has announced plans to develop a National Anti-Racism Framework and is calling on the Federal Government to support the framework, fully resource it and implement it. The Commission also aims to work in partnership with all sectors of Australian… 

President Biden and many other Western political leaders’ speeches including our Morrison on xenophobia, human rights and anti-racism are commendable but must put into real action. 

In a webcast hosted by The Washington Post organised, Asian-American actors Daniel Dae Kim and film director Daniel Wu, argued that community organisations and governments need to form partnerships.

On this note, GetUp, a community NGO based in Melbourne, should lead the nation in fighting against all forms of racism. 

The anti-Asian racism pandemic might overtake covid-19 if political leaders do not recognize the potential damage to the nation which is more destructive and dangerous than the virus. 

Hence, it is in every nation’s interest to ensure harmony at home. Don’t forget the root cause of Anti-Asians are the indiscriminately anti-China sentiment propaganda and anti-Western sentiment propaganda from China. All must stop and give way to constructive and respectful dialogue and diplomacy for world peace. 

This commentary is supplied by the Chinese Community Council of Australia Incorporated: Founding President, Dr Anthony Pun OAM, President, Mr Kingsley Liu. The views expressed in this article are those of the authors.

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