Members of the Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) and supporters rallied outside the Caltex Kurnell oil depot on July 20 to support the seafarers on the tanker Alexander Spirit in Devonport Harbour who are campaigning to protect their jobs and conditions. MUA Sydney branch secretary Paul McAleer, MUA national secretary Paddy Crumlin, Unions NSW secretary Mark Lennon and representatives of the international transport union addressed the protest.
Well over 300 anti-racist protesters, 100 racists and hundred or more cops, including on horses, took to the streets in Sydney's CBD on July 19. Early on, police pushed the anti-racist protesters down two blocks in Martin Place where both rallies had been called and arrested five people. First Nations activist Uncle Lyle Davis was arrested for “swearing”. A woman who fell over at the wrong time and place was also arrested. The anti-racist rally was peaceful, until police allowed racist provocateurs to mingle. Protestors responded by chanting at them as they were rescued by the police.
300-400 anti-racist activists faced off against 400-500 "Reclaim Australia demonstrators in Perth on July 19. This was part of a national weekend of counter rallies against those called by the far right group 'Reclaim Australia'.
A United Patriots Front (UPF) rally of about 20 people was met by 200 Say No to Racism protesters and about 25 police in Hobart on July 19. The UPF rally moved from Franklin Square, through the Elizabeth Street Mall to the ABC building and concluded at the Domain Rose Gardens. Say No to Racism protesters included Greens, Socialist Alliance, anarchists, local musicians, and people who had "never been to a rally before". Say No to Racism protesters disrupted the UPF rally at each stopping point and as they marched on the street.
Today someone tried to stab me with an Australian flag.Yet in spite, or maybe because, of that, I am glad I made it to the Canberra anti-racist rally on July 19. When overtly racist right-wing forces come out onto the streets, we need to show that there are many more of us who are against that kind of hatred. I was in the middle of a large crowd opposing racism and xenophobia and opposite a small one waving red, white and blue flags and carrying placards that said “Islam is a hate group, not a religion”. I think we can tell from that who is the hate group.
Photo: Ali Bakhtiarvandi. A planned show of strength by racists and neo-Nazis in Melbourne backfired when once again far-right protesters were outnumbered 20 to one on July 18.
Over the weekend of July 24 to 26, the nation will be watching as the Australian Labor Party (ALP) holds its 47th triennial national conference at the Melbourne Convention Centre. The Labor Party’s national conference is its highest decision-making body, deciding its policies and future direction. The Labor party’s previous national conference was in Sydney in 2011. At that conference, it voted for a policy supporting marriage equality. Despite that vote, and the Labor Party being in government until the end of 2013, marriage equality was not made law.
Europe, as we know it, may well be over. The promise of a peaceful integration of equals with a capitalist framework lies tattered on the floor of a negotiation room in Brussels. There, the SYRIZA-led Greek government finally succumbed to the blackmail, economic carpet-bombing and “mental water-boarding” of the European powers.
Community resistance to the Perth Freight Link, a $1.6 billion freeway project proposed by the state and federal governments for the south-west region of Perth is growing at an explosive pace. The strength and depth of this opposition is now so strong that the issue will almost certainly dominate the next federal and state election campaigns.
Serena Williams has won 21 Grand Slam titles — the same number every other active women’s player has collected combined. There are many articles — terrific articles — defending Serena Williams against the racism and sexism that have long stalked her career. But we should be similarly aggressive in stating factually just who Serena is becoming before our very eyes.