Chris Peterson

On October 25, 20 people attended a forum on the current situation in Burma. The meeting was organised by the socialist youth organisation Resistance, and featured two human rights activists from Burma — Benya Aye and Sujauddin Karimuddin. The
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On August 17, activists organising the September 5 national student walkout against US President George Bush’s visit to Sydney launched a “Stop Bush Bag” containing items to help publicise the student strike.
In the lead-up to Indonesia’s 2009 elections, a new left party has been formed. The National Liberation Party of Unity (Papernas) was founded on the basis of three main demands: the cancellation of Indonesia’s foreign debt, the nationalisation of the minerals sector, including oil and gas, and national industrialisation.
Internationalism was a strong theme of the 36th Resistance conference held in Sydney over July 5-8. Apart from hearing from Julia Espinoza from Socialist Worker in New Zealand and Gusti Galuh Ratna Sari from the Indonesian National Student League for Democracy, the whole conference took part in a separate one-day forum on July 7 organised by the Venezuelan Embassy.
On June 26, federal education minister Julie Bishop announced a new board to draft a new national Australian history curriculum. Among the draftees are conservative historian Geoffrey Blainey and right-wing commentator Gerard Henderson. This is the Howard government enforcing its own racist ideology on history teaching.
On April 17, 160 people rallied at Melbourne University (MU) against the introduction of the “Melbourne model”. They were joined by students from the Victorian College of the Arts (VCA).
A March 28 forum of 150 people, organised by the Refugee Action Collective, was told that a new detention centre being built on Christmas Island will have the capacity to hold 800 people under 24-hour surveillance, and that detainees will have to wear electronic ID tags and be tracked at all times.
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