29 September, 2007

BBC Country profile: Australia

These are the opening paragraphs of the BBC's country profile for Australia.


You will note the unfavourable bias and the complete lack of mention of Australia's considerable achievements in the arts and sciences. There is no mention of Australia's contribution in either of the two world wars or any military action since.

Australia is also blamed for the actions of the British Commonwealth policy towards aboriginals prior to federation in 1900. This is a common misconception. Australia as a country didnt exist prior to 1900 and every attrocity that occurred prior to that occurred under British rule. It is the British g
overnment's responsibility to apologise for everything that happened prior to Federation.

Why hasnt this BBC document, funded by the British government, been reviewed and corrected by the Australian government?

If the material for Australia is so inaccurate, what validity if any can we place on the profiles of all the other countries listed?

The British founded the first settlement and named it Sydney in 1788. Many of the first settlers were convicts. Free settlers arrived in increasing numbers, particularly after the discovery of gold in the mid-19th century.

Australia's original inhabitants, the Aborigines, numbered a few hundred thousand before the European influx. But two centuries of discrimination and expropriation followed, and at one point the number of Aborigines fell as low as 60,000.

Today 99% of the population are of European or Asian descent, but calls for a formal apology for past injustices towards the Aborigines are still made. Indigenous Australians suffer high rates of unemployment, imprisonment and drug abuse.

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