Months out from the September national elections, the eyes of football-crazy Brazil have been focused on the World Cup. Discussions have centred on the performance (or lack thereof) of the men in the national football team. But it is three women who have been making the biggest impact on politics — especially on the left.
A recent attempt to forge greater unity among militant union sectors in Brazil has imploded. The Working Class Congress (Conclat) was held in Sao Paulo on June 5-6 to try and bring together various radical union currents. The key forces behind the congress were Conlutas and Intersindical, both formed in opposition to the main union confederation, the Unified Workers’ Confederation (CUT). The CUT unites approximately 60 million formal or informal workers out of a total population of 200 million, making it the biggest workers confederation in the continent.
Mamdouh Habib, illegally detained in Guantanamo Bay and then cleared of all terror charges has, since returning to Australia in 2005, faced systematic harassment from security agencies and the NSW Police.
The Goulburn Nine were arrested in November 2005 in Sydney, as were the Barwon 13 in Melbourne. A big deal was made about them being the first local terrorist groups in Australia to face trial under the draconian new “anti-terror” laws.
The Canterbury Bankstown Peace Group (CBPG) is organising a speak-out at Paul Keating Park, Bankstown, on October 18 to demand respect for human rights. Mamdouh Habib, a member of CBPG, is still fighting for the Rudd government to investigate the
With the July 16 vote against Cristina Fernandez de Kirchners proposed tax increases on agricultural exports in the Senate, following the biggest social and political confrontation since the 2001 uprising the overthrew several presidents in one week, the right has scored a clear victory.
A recent move by the government of President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner to implement a system of variable taxes on agricultural exports has opened up a crisis that has lasted more than 100 days.
Where in the world could a jury find in favour of someone, only to have a judge deliver a decision opposite to the jury’s finding? Well, this has happened in NSW and the victim is Mamdouh Habib, best known for being imprisoned by the US military without charges at its Guantanamo Bay naval base, before being released and flown home to Australia in January 2005.
Four years ago, 17-year-old Aboriginal teenage Thomas TJ Hickey was impaled on a metal-spiked fence in Sydneys inner-city Waterloo suburb after his bicycle was rammed by a police vehicle. Proper medical practices were not followed by the police and TJ died in hospital the next day, February 15. If proper practices had been followed, TJ would probably be alive today.
[Abridged from a presentation by Raul Bassi, on behalf of the Socialist Alliance, to a conference hosted by the Venezuelan embassy in Sydney on July 7.]
Over the last few weeks, the family of Mamdouh Habib, former Guantanamo Bay prisoner and independent candidate for the seat of Auburn in the NSW state election, has been subjected to greater police harassment.
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