1015

Less than two weeks after concluding its largest military assault on the occupied West Bank in more than a decade, Israel has relentlessly pounded the besieged Gaza Strip since July 7.

The ongoing bombing campaign is the most severe violence inflicted by Israel on Gaza since its eight-day assault in November 2012, during which more than 150 Palestinians were killed, 33 of them children.

More than 1400 Palestinians were killed in Gaza, including 350 children, during Israel’s three consecutive weeks of attacks from air, land and sea during winter 2008-09.

On 'broad left parties'

Murray Smith, a member of the European Left Party's executive bureau, looks at the emergence of new parties in Europe over the past 25 years. He responds to criticisms of his perspective by Mick Armstrong from Australia's Socialist Alternative.

Ireland: 'We have to convince people that Sinn Fein is different'

“Budget Reply (Hey Joe)” is Australia’s first musical response to Joe Hockey’s deeply unpopular 2014 budget. Written by Les Thomas, the song is a protest against cuts targeting the young, unemployed, elderly, Indigenous programs, Medicare, education, science and the environment.

Thomas has already performed the song at a number of rallies and events in Melbourne.

Australian environmental and international solidarity campaigner Natalie Lowrey was arrested and detained for six days in Kuantan, Malaysia for standing with Malaysian activists campaigning against Australian company Lynas Corp's toxic rare earth refinery near that city.

At a peaceful protest of more than 1000 people outside the Lynas plant on June 22, 16 protesters were arrested and a number were injured by police, one very severely. Lowrey was released with no charge on June 27, the other 15 protesters faced court on July 8 on a variety of charges. She has since returned to Australia.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas challenged Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on July 2 to condemn the abduction and murder of teenager Mohammed Abu Khdeir in east Jerusalem.

Abbas accused extremist Jewish settlers of “killing and burning a little boy” and demanded Israel “hold the killers accountable”.

Just hours after Israel buried three teenagers recently murdered in the West Bank, relatives of Khdeir said the 17-year-old had been forced into a car in east Jerusalem before it sped off.

His burned body was found shortly afterward in a Jerusalem woodland beauty spot.

The Party of the European Left is a European-wide political grouping that unites 26 parties to the left of social democracy, such as SYRIZA in Greece. It released the statement below on July 2. For more information visit Europe-Left.org.

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We consider the main factors in the Ukraine crisis to be the imperial atttitude towards the country, as shown by all major powers involved: the deliberately provocative and bellicose moves by the US, NATO and European Union, as well as the aggressive steps taken by Russia.

The NSW Coalition government's proposed private North West rail link, from Chatswood to Rouse Hill, will be "unfit for the purpose" it is intended for, according to Gavin Gatenby, co-convener of EcoTransit Sydney.

Instead of being a more efficient mode of mass commuter transport, the planned single-deck line would be an "entry wedge for the privatisation of the city's rail system”.

Palmer United Party leader Clive Palmer held an unlikely joint press conference on June 25 with former US vice president and climate campaigner Al Gore.

It was one of those mindboggling moments in Australian politics that seem to be a more frequent occurrence in recent times. Palmer used the opportunity to announce his position on some key climate-related policies the incoming Senate will be voting on.

More than 2000 people marched in Melbourne on June 28 to protest the proposed East West Link motorway.

The East West Link is to be a partially tunnelled toll road that would give commuters crossing the Yarra River an alternative to the currently overloaded West Gate Bridge.

Protesters, however, said the East West Link will be excessively costly, will contribute to pollution and will generate far fewer jobs than an equivalent public transport project. Demonstrators also voiced concerns that the East West Link would erode Melbourne’s culture of public transport.

The stadium in Phokeng outside Rustenburg in South Africa's North West Province exploded in jubilation when the end of the longest strike in South Africa's history was announced on June 23.

Men and women waved their arms victoriously in the air and resounding ululations and cheering reverberated as a great burden of domestic hardship lifted. Workers had changed history.

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