Greetings from around Australia for Green Left's 20th anniversary

Issue 
John Pilger: 'WikiLeaks is a new creation, but Green Left Weekly has been a pathfinder for 20 years, no less.'

Send your own greetings and congratulations to weekly.greenleft@gmail.com

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One of the despairs of our time is a corporate media that speaks for authority and power, rarely for its readers and viewers. One of the excitements of our time is the means by which we can now circumvent the old gatekeepers. WikiLeaks is a new creation, but Green Left Weekly has been a pathfinder for 20 years, no less. Congratulations! — John Pilger, renowned journalist and filmmaker.

The importance of independent media cannot be overestimated. Living in such corporate-infested times, Green Left Weekly challenges the so-called accepted truths of our age, from Palestine to Egypt and privatisation to climate change. I salute this 20 year anniversary and look forward to decades more of truth-telling. — Antony Loewenstein, independent journalist and author.

Brother and sisters, on behalf of the entire west coast membership of the Maritime Union of Australia, I bring solid congratulations to Green Left Weekly. Your commitment to working class men and women is without doubt one of the highlights of the paper. It is one of the most respected, well-informed papers in this country. We salute you all, regards in struggle — Chris Cain, MUA WA branch secretary and national vice president.

Congratulations to all the comrades that have worked on Green Left Weekly over the last 20 years. Through thick and thin GLW has been there with our struggle and hundreds of wonderful volunteers work every week to get the paper on the streets and around the world — this is a great effort. The paper is still the best paper for getting news about workers’ struggles around Australia and from around the world. It is even more important for workers solidarity today that we have a paper like GLW. The mainstream media never gives workers a fair shake and we need our own voice and our own independent media. Here's to another successful 20 years of the paper. Cheers! — Craig Johnston, CFMEU member, Victoria.

As they say, a week in politics is a long time. But two decades of production for a community paper is remarkable. What is even more incredible is that it happens weekly and is distributed nationally - making left and green issues accessible to many people who would otherwise not be exposed to progressive thinking. Congratulations on your 20th, and all the best for the coming decade. As we all know, we need progressive and community-owned media like never before. —Cam Walker, Friends of the Earth

Congratulations to GLW on 20 years without any corporate funding and the inevitable intervention which comes with it. GLW has provided an important and valuable alternative to the mainstream papers pushing the corporate agenda, may this long history of providing a voice for the left continue! — Alison Xamon, Greens MLC in Western Australian parliament

On behalf of the Tamil community in Australia, I would like to congratulate the team behind Green Left Weekly and join in the 20th anniversary celebrations. GLW has dedicatedly and truthfully reported for years on the rights of the Tamil people and the Tamil struggle for self-determination. In recent years, GLW has been one of the very few media outlets to consistently report on Sri Lankan war crimes, and cover the real persecution faced by Tamils seeking asylum in Australia. We wish GLW the best of luck and hope such journalism will flourish in Australia. — Dr Sam Pari, spokesperson for the Australian Tamil Congress.



Above: Greetings to Green Left Weekly from Lina El Rakhawy, a representative of the Egyptian community, at a GLW dinner in Perth on February 12.

Assalam Aleikum. It is my pleasure to respond to your invitation to celebrate 20 years of Green Left Weekly. Social justice and care for the environment are one of the basic values of the religion I belong to: Islam. The Arab Australian Friendship society of WA endorses a website (islamforhumanity.org) which has a section on caring for the environment, human rights, justice and other issues. No wonder that GLW gets my full support. A better world for all is certainly achievable through caring for the environment, and basic human rights for all. Happy birthday to GLWSyed Dashlooty, secretary of the Arab Australian Friendship Society of WA.

Green Left Weekly is a newspaper of true, sincere information and news. Like the corporate media, it is biased — only it reflects the interests of the Australian working class and of ethnic minority communities struggling against racism. GLW is also in the front-line of defence against capitalist globalisation. It is a great honour to be co-editor of its Arabic supplement, The Flame. Let us continue to work together to make our continent an ideal place to live in, without environmental destruction or racism — and for total liberation of all humankind. Victory to freedom fighters all around the world! —Soubhi Iskander, editor of The Flame, GLW's Arabic-language supplement, and a member of the Sudanese Communist Party based in Sydney.

Congratulations on the 20th birthday of a fine working class paper. Warmest best wishes for a continuation for the future. — Fred Moore, veteran unionist and social justice campaigner, Wollongong.



Above: Fremantle City councillor and Socialist Alliance active Sam Wainwright gives greetings to Green Left Weekly at a celebration dinner in Perth on February 12.

Congratulations to Green Left Weekly on its 20th anniversary - this represents a lot of hard work from a large number of dedicated and decent people. GLW is simply the best paper in Australia on anything to do with international politics and solidarity movements. Here's to the next 20 years! — Tim Anderson




So often, Green Left Weekly fills the gigantic gaps left by mainstream media in this country. Critical analysis of what’s going on, and comprehensive background material provided by GLW on a wide range of global and national issues, contributes significantly towards keeping our relative democracy alive. Congratulations to the many dedicated workers who’ve kept GLW regular and relevant over so many years. — Jo Vallentine, chairperson Anti Nuclear Alliance of Western Australia.

Congratulations on your 20th anniversary! For my wife (Del) and me, the voice of GLW is not only informative and an antidote to the mainstream Australian media but a beacon of hope for a better future. Thanks for all your efforts in the past. Best wishes for the future! — Gavin Mooney, co-convenor, WA Social Justice Network.

On behalf of the Communist Party of Australia WA Branch, we wish to express comradely congratulations to 20 years of Green Left Weekly. Our own publication, the workers weekly The Guardian, will reach the 1,500 issue milestone in May 2011. The monopoly stronghold of the mass media in the hands of a handful of media barons expresses the need for the existence of genuine alternative media that express the interests of the working class and other sectors of society. We wish you all well for the future, and for a united struggle for the overthrow of capitalism. We are looking forward to working closer with you as the struggle intensifies. All the best and dare to struggle, dare to win! — David Fox, WA secretary, Communist Party of Australia.

Congratulations to Green Left Weekly on the 20th anniversary, and for all the good work you've been doing for human rights and working people. — Joy Patek, MUA Veterans, Port Kembla.

My heartfelt congrats to Green Left Weekly on the upcoming anniversary. GLW has been a consistent voice for the oppressed and a welcome respite from the corporate media. Where else can progressive people go for regular coverage of contemporary news and issues from an alternative perspective? I must particularly thank GLW for its tireless support for the refugee campaign. When no other news source was prepared to report the truth about the concentration camps, GLW was there. Often provocative, always thoughtful, I hope you will be around many more years to come. — Victoria Martin-Iverson, Refugee Rights Action Network (Perth).

Congratulations to Green Left Weekly! As an activist I know I can rely on GLW to support and publicise actions in the social justice/anti-war movement, and to provide excellent analysis on the important issues of the day without the mainstream corporate slant — how refreshing, thank you! — Donna Mulhearn, peace activist.

Freedom of speech is the result of freedom of information. Green Left Weekly's dissemination encourages people to pursue their right to know. Whether we agree or not with one another, with common humanity for the common good, we shall live and breathe our convictions. — Gerry Georgatos.

Congratulations Green Left Weekly on 20 years in circulation. It’s a great forum for people on the ground, working in areas of social issues and struggles, to report on their experience. And it’s a great achievement for a newspaper to have sustained the support of its subscribers. Thank you for all the good work. — Sue Nigg.

Congratulations to Green Left Weekly on your 20th birthday! It is great to know that GLW is an independent voice committed to human and civil rights, democracy, solidarity and equality. It reflects the interests of the Australian working class, and of the ethnic minority communities. Thanks to all the staff who have contributed to keep us informed with news and analysis on the development of people’s struggles in Australia as well as all over the world. Victory to freedom fighters all around the world! We salute you for your effort and achievement. — Ibiray/ Fondo Raul Sendic Sydney.

Congratulations and thank you for 20 years, Green Left Weekly. As our supposedly free media mistook the publishing of government media statements for journalism, we have been able to rely on GLW to uncover the stories of those who were silenced and ignored, such as during Tampa, “Children Overboard”, and the countless protest actions of refugees in detention. Thank you for exposing the lies and offering a voice to the refugee rights movement in Australia. — Marcus Roberts.

Congratulations to Green Left Weekly on your 20th birthday. In these days of so much media bias, it is so good to have GLW reporting and commenting from a left-wing perspective. I always know that I can find stories in GLW that will not be reported anywhere else in the media and read informed comment by progressive thinkers who would never get space in a Murdoch publication. Happy birthday, and may the next 20 years be as productive and active as the first 20 years. — Jenny Haines.

Congratulations on your 20th birthday! Green Left Weekly is an important link in spreading news and information, and in supporting community events and campaigns. I know you'll provide ready access to publicise the events and campaigns I'm personally involved in — whether it be the anniversary of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster on 26 April, or the Melbourne Ukulele Festival (www.muf.org.au) at the end of February. — Nancy Atkin, peace activist.

Wow you've turned 20! Keep up the great work in getting alternative media out there — helps people see the world from a different angle! So glad I discovered Green Left Weekly a few years ago, look at me now — almost radical! — Reg Dare

Keep up the great work and let's hope the next 20 years are much bigger, better and with more readers, resulting in a better world. — Laura (Political Tarot)

Keep up the struggle for the little man as the mainstream media is full of crap. Good luck for the next 20 years, and beyond. — Bill Hinds, veteran and activist.

Hoping that after 20 years you continue your eloquent and truthful commentary and analysis on current affairs and continued spotlight on otherwise overlooked human rights violations. Congratulations on 20 years of great work and cheers to 20 even better ones. — Sarah Ross, activist.

I must first of all congratulate GLW for the way you have printed the truth. As a member of Socialist Alliance in Western Australia and a trade unionist (MUA number 5002008), I look forward to my copy of GLW. Keep up the great work comrades. — Geoff Walton.

As an independent newspaper, uncontrolled by the likes of Rupert Murdoch, Green Left Weekly has been a strong voice in Australia. Always on the side of the weak and oppressed, always balanced in appraisal of world affairs and always dedicated to spreading the ideals of social justice. Bravo! — Barbara Cattunar

Congratulations to Green Left Weekly on its 20th anniversary. A great achievement, and a continuing essential element in the struggle for human rights, women's liberation and peace! — Dr Margaret Perrott, vice-president South Coast May Day Committee and convener of IWD collective Wollongong.

Thanks for your great paper. It is often the only way to get any truth about what is going on. — Rosemary Lathouris.

As an activist and unionist I believe Green Left Weekly is a vital resource linking activists together in struggle. The international news provided by GLW is unrivalled in Australia and gives us a great working class perspective on international events, something rarely seen in our mainstream media. Thank you and congratulations to all the GLW staff and volunteers for 20 great years of work. — Justine Kamprad.

Congratulations on your 20th anniversary. Green Left Weekly continues to make an outstanding contribution to the international struggle for environmental justice and social justice, proving with every edition that the two are inextricably linked. Short-term profit, shareholder returns, and the Davos consensus can never deliver a sustainable world, not in an environmental sense, nor a social one. An alternative consensus built on people and the planet has always existed, and continues to make itself heard through the noise of advertising, spin and braying bankers. Green Left Weekly has been an important part of that alternative voice. Thank you for all your hard work. May you continue and flourish. — Peter Shield, editor www.naturalchoices.co.uk

I remember reading my first GLW 15 years ago, enthralled as I went from cover to cover, feeling like I was seeing the world for the first time. Here's to the super hard working GLW staff and all activists who continue to help thousands of us each week to understand the world and inspire us to change it. Happy 20th! — Paul Benedek, Socialist Alliance NSW co-convener.

Viva GLW! Australia's biggest green, democratic and egalitarian newspaper! — Simon Ashworth Wood.

Heartiest congrats to Green Left Weekly on keeping us so well informed for 20 years. Where would we be without that wide-ranging reporting to balance our woeful corporate media? All strength for the next 20 years! — Vivienne Porzsolt

At one stage I was buying the odd Green Left Weekly. I realised that without GLW we would not be able to hear the dissenting voices, the truth about the US and Australia's imperialist wars, the revolutionary processes taking place in Latin America, the popular uprisings, etc. Now I have a subscription for myself, my sons and my parents. Congratulations GLW. Hope to see you there for the rest of my days. — Marlene Obeid, anti-war activist.

Keep it up. I'm 88 years old. Been involved in left peace activity since 1948. Still am (coupled with climate change for 20 or more years). I aim to live to 100 years so I can see capitalism come to an end (I hope without destroying the human race or the planet). Both debatable, given our present “leadership”. Ha. What a world. — Jim Knight

I have been reading Green Left Weekly for over 10 years. Unlike most other media outlets, Green Left Weekly presents the truth today and its environmental reporting shows what the future holds for life on this planet unless we change our ways. To me most other media outlets are boring. — Antionette Podger

As a member of Socialist Alliance and a lesbian activist for over 20 years I must congratulate Green Left Weekly for its excellent coverage of LGBTI issues. — Rose Matthews

Congratulations to Green Left Weekly. For 20 years you have defiantly kept alive the hope for a better world by promoting progressive and non-sectarian politics in the face of a time of decadence and often brutal reaction. We are all in your debt. - Gary MacLennan, long time Brisbane activist.

My time working in the Green Left Weekly office was a highlight of my life so far... So happy it's been such a resilient campaigning news source. Warmest comradely congrats to all! — Karen Fredericks.

Congratulations and a big thank you to all of the comrades who've been working hard to produce Green Left Weekly. Publishing a paper covering local struggles as well as national and international developments from a revolutionary perspective is an achievement. Maintaining it for 20 years is fantastic. I am proud to sell Green Left Weekly in regional Australia. — Bea Bleile, Socialist Alliance New England convener.

At a time when masses of workers are rising up across the globe to fight for and defend their basic freedoms, it is critical that we have truly independent news outlets like Green Left Weekly to carry the truth and the reality and the humanity of these struggles to the broader community. Across these past two decades I have watched as Green Left Weekly has grown and strenghtened its fearless voice. We do not have too many readers at the big end of corporate Australia, we don't have too many readers in Canberra or in George street; but it is the workers going home on the trains and on the buses and in their motor cars, who are buying the latest edition of their paper - to see the truth and to share the passion and the vision — Sam Watson, Murri activist, Brisbane.

There are lots of stories and perspectives that corporate media and even public media always downplay or ignore. Social justice, economic exploitation and the limitations of our democracy are issues which should be at the heart of our news agenda but struggle to find their place on story lists. Green Left Weekly and its workers have worked to bring these perspectives to us. When I am looking for an under-covered story, I often go through Green Left Weekly. Congratulations on being there! — Wendy Bacon, Professor of Journalism at the University of Technology, Sydney and Independent Journalist.

This paper is the finest and most consistent organising tool Australia has today and for 20 years it has kept all progressive people linked and informed. Politics and the world we live in is not a simple process and changing things to make them better is not a straight line. You can't discuss and learn about these things in a text message or on Facebook, Twitter, or whatever. It takes space, time and a lot of hard work. Green Left Weekly provides this platform. It can't be blocked, filtered or turned off like it was recently in Egypt. Green Left Weekly is here to stay! — Tim Gooden, Secretary Geelong Trades Hall Council.

3CR congratulates Green Left Weekly on the tremendous effort of 20 years of radical publication. Like 3CR, Green Left Weekly has been committed to spreading the seeds of dissent; informing, organising and mobilising people fighting for change. We commend you and your members on keeping your radical voice alive — Loretta O'Brien, Radio 3CR Station Manager

Congratulations to all who have been involved in the production of this fine paper, both past and present over the past 20 years. It's great to be able to read, and be informed about real issues that affect our fellow comrades not only here in Australia, but around the world, without the biased editing of the family-owned media empires, and advertisement-style propaganda quotes from our current conservative government, and opposition. Keep up the good work, Solidarity forever! — Phil Golby, trade unionist, Gladstone.

I wish to join those who, having supported and subscribed to your excellent and unique newspaper over many years, now wish to celebrate this event. May you continue to be the only newsworthy weekly in Australia. All the best for another 20 years! — Michael Goldstein, Sydney.

Not wanting to seem like a fine vintage wine sipping socialist ('cos I'm not - I usually drink cleanskin merlot if I'm hitting up some plonko) but I thought the vintage wine thing was appropriate. I've noticed this amongst a couple of other Green Left readers — as the years go on you just continue to realise what a useful resource Green Left is. The more you read it the better it gets. This year's vintage is excellent, very rich in up to date information as per usual. Boldly revolting Egyptian and Middle Eastern overtones, slightly bitter and acidic extreme weather warning tannins and a hint of charred dictators office buildings — Zane Alcorn, Socialist Alliance candidate for Newcastle.

Congratulations on reaching an exciting milestone! I love taking my paper to bed with a cuppa and a couple of bikkies. I find that I get a more realistic and honest appraisal of national and international news. Where I’d be without this amazing paper, I don’t know! Certainly not as informed! I also like the comradeship I feel with people who know that a better world is possible, and together we can make it happen! A big thank you to all concerned, past and present! — Naomi Cartledge

Thanks to all the people involved for volunteering their precious time to try to bring about a better world by giving a voice to the poor and underpaid. — Mathew Munro

Congratulations on being the best print media in Oz to bring real news about the things that really matter.
May you have another 20 wonderful years ahead and more — Robyn Francis

With few alternatives to the humdrum conservative rantings of The West Australian, people in Perth have craved the analysis and left views of Green Left Weekly. I don’t always agree, but I usually enjoy reading the different perspective Green Left Weekly offers. Before we all went online, it was one of a few sources of lefty news and views. Happy Birthday! 20 years is a tremendous achievement. Well done to all the comrades who have worked so hard over the years to publish. In solidarity — Hon. Lynn MacLaren, MLC South Metropolitan Region (Greens WA).

Happy birthday Green Left Weekly. Yours is a voice of conscience, truth and morality in a world of spin and vested interest. As the Tasmanian anti-pulp mill movement enters the seventh year of combating state sponsored corporate greed and vandalism we salute the clarity of your world view. You are an inspiration — Bob McMahon, TAP (Tasmanians Against Pulp Mill) Into A Better Tasmania.

Congratulations to all the dedicated comrades at Green Left Weekly for 20 years of reporting the real news as it happens without fear or favour. How you have survived all this time without losing your bite or independence is amazing. It is great to know that there are enough people out there who want views other than those perpetrated by the mainstream media, to keep the paper solvent all this time. Thanks for being there and exposing all the myths that keep injustice rampant — Irene Doutney, Greens Councillor, City of Sydney.

Congratulations on 20 years! Green Left is an invaluable and essential resource for an Australian publisher of academic and general non fiction like me. Print or online — it covers the local and international stories somehow "missed" by other media and also provides readers with that critical information absent from the authorised version of events promoted by governments, corporate PR and all too often by our academic institutions — Ann Cunningham, commissioning editor and lawyer.

Without Green Left Weekly and Al Jazeera we would know so little of what is REALLY happening in the world - long live people's power, long live the people's media! — Margarita Windisch

Thanks camaradas for all the hard work to inform Australian people all these years — Danilo Sanchez

Congratulations to Green Left Weekly on your 20th anniversary. This marks 20 long years of independence, active social criticism and hard work. Well done. Independent media which focuses on human rights and social justice is more necessary now than ever. In the age of WikiLeaks it is clear that freedom of speech and information is what we make of it and Green Left Weekly's critical analysis will continue to prove invaluable for grassroots activists and engaged citizens alike — David Shoebridge, Greens MLC in NSW Parliament.

The Committee for Human Rights in Guatemala, based in Sydney, Australia, sends warm and fraternal greetings to all of the journalists, editors and production team at Green Left Weekly, for achieving 20 years of arduous informative and journalistic work. We believe that Green Left Weekly is an objective and truthful newspaper totally committed to being a spokesperson of the different organisations that struggle against capitalism, racial discrimination, social exclusion, exploitation and social injustice. Only by building a global socialist system can we live in peace, with justice and enjoy the human rights that all women and men deserve — Victor-Hugo Munoz, Coordinator, Committee for Human Rights in Guatemala.

The Victorian Division of the National Tertiary Education Union congratulates Green Left Weekly on its 20th anniversary. The paper continues to provide a needed alternative voice to the mainstream press, a strong voice supporting militant unionism and environmental, political and social struggles — Colin Long, Victorian Division Secretary of the National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU).

Unionists and left academics in Australia and the world over should not be without Green Left Weekly. Ever since its memorable first issue on the first Gulf War, Green Left has grown as a force for real social change and social justice. It covered the biggest issue of the day when it first came out and it has never wavered in practical support to the social and class struggles of people everywhere. Its relevance will likewise never vary — Jeremy Smith, Branch President University of Ballarat Branch NTEU.

It's nearly 20 years since I first bought Green Left Weekly, and almost 19 since I started distributing and occasionally writing for it, although it doesn't feel like that long ago. So congratulations to GLW, you make me feel old! In this era of a myriad of web based news feeds and blogs and WikiLeaks and all the rest, Green Left still manages to publish original and vital news that we can use to change the world for the better. Climate change is making the world change for the worst, inexorably, slowly, with every season and every new coal mine or oil well. Any countervailing tendency that we can use to steer back in the other direction is vital and we would be much worse off without Green Left. Happy birthday to you! — Ben Courtice, Melbourne-based climate activist, socialist, writer and blogger.

Congratulations to everyone who has worked and contributed to this wonderful newspaper over the past 20 years. May you continue for many years to come, as the much needed torchbearer for an alternative and independent press. — Kathleen Scott

That's fantastic. Congratulations to all who have kept its voice alive. You'll outlive Andrew Bolt yet — Rod Quantock, Melbourne comedian.

Green Left Weekly is an invaluable resource for anyone wanting a beyond-the-spin analysis of events in Australia or the wider world . I recommend it regularly in the classes I teach on Critical Thinking — John Rice, Adelaide.

Congratulations all round to Green Left Weekly
Twenty years of news coverage and all so uniquely
So well might you ask, how they take up the task
To report and reveal, point the finger, unmask
To name blame and shame not to mention re-frame
And promote unsung heroes to the left’s hall of fame
Both Murdoch and Fairfax should pay a don’t care tax
For gutter press journalism with sensational impacts
So what does it take to make this weekly great?
Supporters and reporters who pull beyond their weight
They publish, accomplish, admonish and nourish
Real news hungry readers so information can flourish
It’s all News, to peruse, amuse and sometimes refuse
Then Maintain the green image, recycle, re-use
In those twenty years bet there’s been plenty of fears
That’s always the way when you hit new frontiers
Green Left take a bow well done and three cheers
Sue Gilbey