A possible new legal front – this time international – has opened today in the ugly war on Israel Folau by Australia’s left-wing football officials. It is being reported that Folau has been cleared to resume his stellar career in his homeland by Tonga’s rugby league bosses. Earlier this year, the star playmaker was banned by the Australian Rugby Union and the Australian Rugby League for being a Christian. In what must have been frenzied scenes last night, an angry ARL committee chairman Peter Beattie (whose ignorance of the game has made him a national laughing stock) was reportedly “scrambling” to force the Tongan National Rugby League to change its mind and abandon Folau. Beattie has indicated he will seek to overrule the Tongans at the Rugby League International Federation. However, it seems the Tongans were ready for Australian theatrics. They are armed with legal advice that neither Beattie nor the ARL have the right to block Folau’s selection.
This is taking hatred of Folau to new levels of malice and recklessness. For starters, it is now impossible not to acknowledge the racial overtones. We now have white Australian officials led by Beattie (and backed by gay Irish plutocrat Alan Joyce) trying to monster a black nation and deprive Folau of the right to ply his trade anywhere on earth – even in his native land. The move reeks of nineteenth century condescension and, if successful, would humiliate the Tongan people. What did Beattie think would happen here? Did he think the Tongans would capitulate? (Does he know any Tongans?). Did he think he could expel an entire nation from the game? The arrogance and prejudice are breathtaking. This is the worst call made by Beattie since he campaigned tirelessly to make Keith Wright Premier of Queensland. He has to go. He is an embarrassment to rugby league and to Australia.