So how do I apply for a position as an ABC journalist in China? There is a gap to fill with the return of Bill Birtles. Among my credentials is the fact that I have never met Cheng Lei!
Sometimes you have to laugh or you will cry as every day the bilateral relationship spirals further down.
Whilst he is no Rowan Callick, Bill Birtles has been one of the more balanced journalists commenting on China. It is a pity to see him return home. Hopefully he will soon be back on the job.
It is not in Australia's or China's interests to have a vacuum in international reporting. People to people interaction must be maintained at all costs. Without Friendship we have no foundation on which to build.
We need a circuit breaker to stop the decline. It is great to see Australia's Ambassador to China, Graham Fletcher, playing peacemaker in successfully resolving this crisis.
It shows what can be achieved if we leave diplomacy to skilled diplomats.
We all need to push for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to be empowered to rebuild SinoAustralian bilateral relations on a firm footing so we can start to fix the mess.
Last two Australian correspondents pulled out of China after five-day diplomatic standoff over national security case - ABC News