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You bet you will

When Tony Abbott got a little over-excited with his shirt-front threat, saying “You bet you will”, it was perhaps more prophetic than a slip of the tongue.

It seems the other leaders have been lining up to have ‘robust conversations’ with Vladimir Putin, while Tony is lining up for photos, though he did put Vlad at the end of the line in the group shot.

Meanwhile, Tony’s buddy, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper offered a verbal shirt-front to Putin.

“I guess I’ll shake your hand but I have only one thing to say to you: you need to get out of Ukraine,” Harper told Putin at the summit in Brisbane, Australia, according to his spokesman Jason MacDonald.

Putin’s response to the comment was not positive, MacDonald said in an email, without elaborating.

Obama said the United States was at the forefront of “opposing Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, which is a threat to the world, as we saw in the appalling shoot-down of MH17” – a reference to the downing of a Malaysian airliner over rebel-held territory on July 17, with the loss of 298 lives.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the European Union was considering further financial sanctions against Russian individuals because of the crisis in Ukraine.

“The present situation is not satisfying,” she told reporters. “At present the listing of further persons is on the agenda.”

A Kremlin spokesman said the Ukraine crisis was the only topic discussed at a one-on-one meeting between Putin and British Prime Minister David Cameron, but he added both expressed interest in “ending confrontation” and rebuilding relations.

The European Union demanded Moscow withdraw troops and weapons from Ukraine and put pressure on rebels there to accept a ceasefire, after the latest fighting wrecked a truce agreed in September.

EU foreign ministers will meet on Monday to assess the situation in Ukraine and whether further steps including additional sanctions are needed against Russia, said European Council President Herman Van Rompuy. Obama plans to meet European leaders to discuss the matter on Sunday, he added.

Outside the summit, Ukrainian Australians staged an anti-Putin protest, wearing headbands reading “Putin, Killer”.

Meanwhile, Putin was all smiles, shaking hands with Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott. Press secretary, Mr Peskov, also praised Tony Abbott, saying the Prime Minister was an absolutely hospitable host.

Call me Tony.




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  1. Lee

    I love how the hypocrites don’t mind starving their own citizens with their austerity measures but they disapprove of what Putin is doing in the Ukraine.

  2. Wun Farlung

    Yes Lee breathtaking hypocrisy. By both pollies and media.
    The USA and UK for 100 years have been involved in war whether it be supply of armaments, tactical assistance, finance or active participation.
    I’m going to check ebay and see if I can buy an iron lung

  3. Terry2

    I watched Abbott’s welcome speech to the world leaders, where he went off script and started rambling about his successes in stopping the boats and repealing carbon pricing and it occurred to me that something had snapped in his brain and might be a signal that something is seriously wrong with this man.Something that may require medical intervention.

    Wait until the world leaders have departed and then send in the men in white coats – it’s humane.

  4. Kaye Lee


    I saw Tony’s speech followed by Obama’s speech at UQ. Talk about contrast.

    Tony has no social graces. It was awkward in the extreme. He also has no vision. Everything is about him and his moment in time. Obama, on the other hand, made an inspiring speech calling on the young people of the world to make their voices heard.

    To paraphrase Paul Hogan, “That’s not a leader….THIS is a leader.”

  5. red

    I can’t help but have a little giggle about the comments from Obama and others about the Ukraine, I do sometimes wonder if they take classes on how to bullshit and lie while sounding ever so sincere. While the US has been up to it’s neck in supporting the neo nazis in the Ukraine they are also extremely busy meddling, invading and occupying other nations around the world. Then Obama bags Russia, China and the DPRK and says “rule of force must give way to the rule of law” and even manages not to laugh at his own hypocrisy. Wonder if any Australian news outlet will mention just how many countries the US is bombing at the minute. Then there is the sorry state of life for the majority of US citizens, what a shit hole. Oh well, it will only get worse when the republicans get in. Obama is a great orator and very good looking and there is no comparison with our own joke of a leader but I find it impossible to get carried away with the politics.

  6. mark delmege

    So no comment on the origins of the snipers in Kiev who killed so many police and protesters and brought about the coup? No comment on the ongoing terrorism against the Russian speakers in eastern Ukraine who have faced months of shelling by the US backed Kiev slaughter machine?
    No comment on the US backed slaughter in Syria which has killed so many and has morphed into IS in Iraq and Syria. And no comment on the ongoing disaster in Afghanistan which turned a once emerging socialist country into 35 years of hell? And no comment on the disaster that is life in Libya that was destroyed by Camerons bombers and Obamas Military machine. No comment at all on all the rotten disastrous policies and attacks and support for terrorist groups that have killed off the hopes of millions of people in this and the next generations – particularly in the Middle East – no comment at all – just blame Russia. So we might have freedom of expression in this country but the media certainly isn’t free to comment or are they just stupid?/ Just blame Putin

  7. mars08

    mark delmege:

    …we might have freedom of expression in this country but the media certainly isn’t free to comment or are they just stupid?

    Huh? You want historical perspective, context and investigative journalism? Really? Well good luck with that!!! Such reporting is beyond our media for a number of reasons. I any case, I doubt the most of our fellow citizens would be interested. The want quick and simple “goodies vs baddies” stories. And Putin just looks more like a “baddie” than most of the others.

  8. John Fraser


    @Kaye Lee

    "Tony has no social graces" ….. that may be so, but what is of greater concern is that Abbott is no politician.

    And what is of greater concern …… impossible I hear you say ……….. is the entire Liberal party agrees with Abbott and walks with him.

  9. donwreford

    If the Canadian Prime minister confronts Putin, to get out of Ukraine, I suggest America, and its lap dog, Australia, get out of the vast amount of countries, having America, in, I doubt if America, is doing anything favorable for these countries.

  10. John Fraser


    @Mark Delmage

    Apparently the $7 doctors co-payment is the most important thing on Australia's radar.

    Hockey is now so irrelevant his interviews now involve talking up to economic rednecks.

  11. Kevin Arnold

    I think that people getting all hung up over Putin should think back a bit. Whatever Putin is, there are still many millions of people alive today who have memories of the last big war in Europe. Whatever the causes, the destruction of Russia was horrendous. Deaths alone was over 30 million, so you can see the paranoia that people may have as a result. Ukraine was a vital part of Hitler’s plans for the invasion and given the hatred endemic between the two, many Ukrainians turned and fought with the Germans. I have read that 125,000 Ukrainians joined the Waffen SS, probably the worst offenders. Remember quite a few non- Russians were exterminated by this group so any thoughts that this is a case of Goldilocks versus the big bad wolf may be somewhat simplified. Born in 1942 I lived through the cold war and remember the Cuban crisis specifically.The USA rightly suspected nuclear missiles there, and went close to a conflagration to protect themselves. Russia is no longer communist and we welcomed the oligarchs. Putin could be one of them so we have no ideological differences, only economic ones. I suspect that this is the case, add to it the history of Europe, and the lingering anti-communism, the responses seem to be less than rational. Putin will do what he thinks is best for himself and Russia and this is the situation in every other country, so let’s give it all a miss for a while. We have more troubles here with our leader and his band of corrupt backers. They are the same as Putin only the size is different.

  12. stephentardrew

    I stated at the beginning of the farce in Ukraine that the only solution was to give autonomy to the regions with majority populations then it is up to Russia or the West to make it worthwhile to join one or the other. But no the only solution is a civil war which is impossible to resolve from within the current borders of Ukraine. You know good old democracy – ask the people. Better new borders than multi-generational civil war. The number of innocents killed and effectively murdered by the US coalition is in the hundreds of thousands yet the West is using the shooting down of a civilian plane in a war zone – what the hell was it doing there anyway – as a coercive weapon against Russia. Where the hell is the diplomacy. The US has never apologized for shooting Down the Iranian civil airline and they deliberately limited compensation to victims. We citizens really are a bunch of habitual knee jerk indoctrinated sheeple.

    We are being sold another manufactured conflict for the sake of capitalist hegemony. Where the hell are the reasoned voices because I just don’t see them. It was most likely a foolish error and needs to be approached as such. Demonising and belligerence just builds resentment and a subsequent lack of cooperation. You think humiliating Putin is going to solve anything. Point is they do not want a solution. The coalition of the willing want conflict otherwise they would turn down the heat and negotiate. Anything to deflect form the neo-con-raping of the wealth of nations. Anyone bleating on about Israel and Gaza with the same blustering indignity as this lot.

    When are Westerners going to stare down their hypocrisy?

  13. Kaye Lee

    Joe Hockey is getting almost as quotable as Abbott.

    “we are only going to get prosperity and jobs as a result of the changes which, for example, Tony Abbott talked about yesterday, on things like higher education reform, Medicare co-payments and so on.

    We know they’re difficult, but we have to do them if we’re going to create jobs.

    The only way we are going to get growth going right across the world and in Australia is if we have the sort of structural changes which in Australia means reform of higher education, it means actually fixing the welfare system.”

    [Can someone explain to me how making education more expensive, stashing $20 billion in a fund to be given to private companies for research in the distant future, and cutting pensions helps create jobs?]

    BARRIE CASSIDY: Sure, but do you accept climate change potentially is one of the biggest impediments to growth?

    JOE HOCKEY: No. No, I don’t. Absolutely not….. What we’re doing today is making decisions that are going to give people food and electricity and clean water, but also give them hope that tomorrow’s going to be better than today.

    [Coal might give us electricity but droughts, floods and cyclones aren’t great for food production Joe and mining uses exorbitant amounts of water and jeopardises the water table.]

    “We are doing our best, Barrie, and the only way we can start to get the budget back to surplus is to reduce expenditure, particularly that we’ve got falling revenue.”

    [Ummm….how about raising revenue through…oh I don’t know…a mining tax or a financial transactions tax, or reducing tax concessions for superannuation and negative gearing and capital gains]

    But fear not folks….

    “So for the first time ever, we’ve put a number on the ambition, so it is not words, it’s a number.”

    Phew…it’s not just a talkfest, it’s a countingfest which must be why Tony is pursuing his infuriating habit of counting on his fingers as he tells the world leaders he has “stopped the boats, axed the tax, and built the roads of the 21st century”

    Speaking of roads….just how can Australia be a “global infrastructure hub” when carrier pigeons are faster than our internet and I doubt that the rest of the world is impressed by our bitumen heat islands to carry more cars.

  14. stephentardrew

    Barrie Cassidy like all on the left has lost his mojo because there are no reasoned and sustainable arguments being presented only watered down ineffective reposts. Journalism? Bah humbug what wimpy fools.

    Where is the solid point by point refuting of Hockey,s nonsense.

    Better send Barry off to you Kaye for re-education.

  15. John Fraser


    @Kaye Lee

    Hockey's reduced to appealing to the illiterate.

    Old Joe's got the brains and skin of a Rhino ….. and refuses to either step down or resign.

    Wraps himself in the flag of patriotism as a security blanket.

    "You're not to be so blind with patriotism that you can't face reality. Wrong is wrong, no matter who does it or says it."
    Malcolm X (1925-1965)

    "You can question somebody's views and their judgment without questioning their motives or patriotism."
    Barack Obama ( 1961 – )

  16. Truth Seeker

    Kaye, yes, and the main “Shirtfronting” was for Abbott himself, from Obama on CC 😀

    And as poet laureate to the G20 (self appointed), my first poem was for Abbott and posted on Friday “When the Abbott goes bad!” 😉
    When the Abbott goes bad

    It’s really quite sad

    For the voters to see

    That we’ve all just been had

    As he set out to fight

    With the Russian named Vlad

    And the people have realised

    That the man’s raving mad

    When the Abbott goes bad!

    And the second in the series was posted this morning 😯 “Sloppy Joe’s a jumper?” 🙄

    Sloppy Joe’s a jumper

    Which is somewhat over size

    But it’s also our fat treasurer

    Who really takes the prize

    For grossly overacting,

    Economic lies and fear

    For shedding lots of crocodile tears,

    And verbal diarrhoea

    He says that economically

    There’s nothing he can’t fix

    But the truth is, he’s just one of many

    Liberal party Dicks


    Sloppy Joe’s a jumper?

    The rest can be found by clicking on the links 😉

    Cheers 😀

  17. Terry2

    John Fraser

    Isn’t this the Emperor’s New Clothes all over again:

    Extract :

    “So off went the Emperor in procession under his splendid canopy. Everyone in the streets and the windows said, “Oh, how fine are the Emperor’s new clothes! Don’t they fit him to perfection? And see his long train!” Nobody would confess that he couldn’t see anything, for that would prove him either unfit for his position, or a fool. No costume the Emperor had worn before was ever such a complete success.

    “But he hasn’t got anything on,” a little child said.

    “Did you ever hear such innocent prattle?” said its father. And one person whispered to another what the child had said, “He hasn’t anything on. A child says he hasn’t anything on.”

    “But he hasn’t got anything on!” the whole town cried out at last.

    The Emperor shivered, for he suspected they were right. But he thought, “This procession has got to go on.” So he walked more proudly than ever, as his noblemen held high the train that wasn’t there at all.”

    It needs just one honest person in the Liberal Party and the whole charade will fall away………..

  18. stephentardrew

    The garbage bag emperor with the shriveled pre-frontal lobe.

  19. Annie Byam


    Also :

    I thought Pres. Obama’s speech was inspiring. And obviously the audience appreciated his forceful attitude with his decided smack at the current Australian PM’s stance on climate change in particular. Women’s rights, equality, co-operation, Gay & Lesbian rights and acceptance, and appealing to the young people to tackle the newer world problems.

    He pointedly offered the ‘excuse’ ( no doubt ‘excusing’ Abbott, very much with tongue in cheek ) …. that older people are entrenched in certain ways, it is more difficult for them to accept change. ( not verbatim ). His standing ovation was much deserved. And the points he made that brought applause, showed that the young there DO take an interest in their country and what is good for it. …… if they didn’t, they wouldn’t have known to applaud the various comments when made.

    Good on the President. ………. I wonder if the Abbott will listen ? ……… I strongly doubt it.

  20. Zathras

    The “you bet you will – you bet I am” remark clearly indicates that Abbott had been coached on what to say but fluffed his lines.

    There was video of him yesterday walking alone and talking to himself – probably rehearsing his next bold statement.

  21. Terry2

    Actually, Zathras, I always thought the the metaphor he had been looking for was “button hole” and not “shirtfront” – the former being far more appropriate and less aggressive.

    Abbott’s ramblings about stopping the boats and getting his $7 co-payment through, made at the opening of the leaders’ retreat show an example of poor briefing by his minders. It appeared that he was absolutely lost and just fell back on the rhetorical crutches that he has used so often in the past.

    But not to worry, NEWS CORP didn’t notice it and according to them, the G20 was yet another triumph for Abbott.

  22. Annie B


    I doubt the ‘minders’ would actually give POOR briefings or written notes on speeches for the Abbott. …… they would most likely be succinct, clear and well thought out.

    It would be the PM who would toss them aside, IMO – because he is ” the leader ” …. and would not consider anything he perceived as being ” told what to do “. So into the trash basket it would all go. And he’d do his own thing – on stage, in front of millions – to make an utter fool of himself. Not of Australia —- of HIMSELF.

    He is a narcissist to the enth degree, topped off with machiavellian tendencies ….. in fact he might well be Machiavelli the Second. !!

    He needs a medical referral – – – ( provided of course, he kick-starts his beloved $7 co-payment to the referring doctor to begin with !!! ).

  23. JARIS

    Whoever said Obama is brilliant is a complete idiot. In reality ‘Obongo’ is war mongrel, pure liar and imposter. NOTHING is inspirational in him! Shame on those who believe any words of this lunatic!

  24. corvus boreus

    Thank you for the heads-up disclaimer at the end.

  25. mark delmege

    Yes JARIS and corvus ….gay rights and other human rights and realistically climate change only matters for the living – and the hundreds of thousands dead or millions damaged by his policies particularly in the ME and North Africa and elsewhere on the fringes of empire don’t matter.

  26. corvus boreus

    mark d,
    Not my words.

  27. WladSikorsky

    Any article that begins with the demands of what “we” must do in a complex situation is more an insight into the writer’s own faulty thought processes than any sort of solution.
    What seems “right” to Mr Garton Ash and much of the Western establishment is patently not right for millions of people who do not share his view of how the world should be.

    British and European academicians traditionally have the insight to see both sides of an argument – it appears to me the writer’s been spending too much time in Stamford.

  28. LukeKr

    As a clear example of what Vladdy thinks of media freedoms in Russia…… he actually appointed his little bit of cheesecake girlfriend as Chair of the National Media Group. It’s the equivalent of Cameron naming a trophy mistress as the Chair of the BBC. Her name is Alina Kabayeva if you care to Google her. (admittedly, she’s hot…. but not qualified at all)

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