Miscellany: Passports and promises

Passports and promises

No doubt many crikey readers have looked at their passports in the past few months – no doubt for various reasons no doubt as well.

Now the words and promises in the passport – if you read the fine print – have a certain poignancy, given Messrs Habib and Hicks.

On page one – straight after the insider front cover’s personal details – come the immortal words: “The Governor-General of the Commonwealth, being the representative in Australia of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Second, requests all those whom it may concern to allow the bearer to pass freely without let or hindrance and to afford him or her every assistance and protection of which he or she may stand in need.”

Obviously, on the basis of recent events “whom it may concern”, “assistance” and “protection” should not be construed as applying to either the Australian or US Governments or in any way involving the normal aspects of the rule of law.