"Should Team Autralia Be Disqualified?' was the theme of a comedy debate held as a fundraiser for Green Left Weekly in Sydney on October 17.
A proposal for a refugee hub at Callan Park has won the support of Leichhardt Council. Leichhardt Council decided on December 8 to write to the state and federal governments to request funding for the establishment of a Refugee Welcome Centre in Callan Park. Leichardt Mayor Darcy Byrne said: “By offering a place in our own backyard to the orphans and widows fleeing Syria and elsewhere, we can put our good intentions into action.”
Even with protests banned in Paris ahead of the United Nation's COP21 climate talks, about 2300 climate protests sent a global message to leaders at the talks. Hundreds of thousands of people joined climate change protests, marches and other events around the world on November 29 to send a message to leaders on the eve of COP21 that the world is waiting for climate change action. The 2300 climate actions included 175 countries.
In July 2012, the residents Kobanê rose up against the regime of Bashar al-Assad, making it the centre of the liberated cantons of Rojava (Syrian Kurdistan). In the rest of Syria, various forces — including the regime, the so-called "Islamic State" and the al-Qaeda-affiliated Nusra Front have turned the country into a battleground, fuelled ethnic and religious divisions and competed with each other in cruelty to civilians. By contrast, in Rojava's liberated cantons a new society based on participatory democracy, ethnic equality, religious tolerance and feminism is emerging.
Bolivian President Evo Morales has blamed capitalism for environmental destruction during his speech at the opening plenary at the United Nations COP21 climate summit in Paris, France, TeleSUR English said on November 30. Morales called capitalism “the formula that has destroyed our species” and delivered a manifesto to save Mother Earth and life.
The poorest half of the world suffering the worst impacts of climate change is responsible for just 10% of global carbon emissions, while the richest 10% spew out half of all emissions, says a new report released by Oxfam on December 2. TeleSUR English said that day that the findings of Oxfam's Extreme Carbon Inequality highlight the need for world leaders to heed the calls of social movements and pay attention to the vastly unequal contributions to climate change to craft a deal based on global climate justice.
Up to 100 people gathered in Wollongong on December 5 to witness the New South Wales government's costly operation to move 25 tonnes of highly radioactive nuclear waste through Port Kembla to the Lucas Heights facility in southern Sydney. After a welcome to country by a prominent traditional land owner and elder, we were addressed by representatives from the Maritime Union of Australia, the South Coast Labour Council and Beyond Nuclear initiative. Overnight and into the early morning, Greenpeace activists on flotillas witnessed the incoming shipment on their flotillas.
On December 6, Venezuela held its 20th election in 17 years and one of its most difficult yet. With the opposition upping the ante in terms of media attacks and sabotage, 2.5 years of economic difficulties and since the passing of revolutionary leader Hugo Chavez, not to mention a recent right-wing victory in Argentina, the left and right around the world turned anxious eyes to Venezuela.
Venezuela's Bolivarian Revolution will face its toughest challenge yet this Sunday, when voters go to the polls to elect a new National Assembly. Amid an economic crisis marked by currency instability and inflation, many Venezuelans are understandably going to be thinking hard before casting what would be seen as a vote in support of President Nicolás Maduro.
Israel has detained at least 1200 children since October 1. As the latest upsurge in mass Palestinian resistance to Israel's occupation entered its third month, the world marked the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People on November 29.
One side event at the COP21 United Nations climate change conference in Paris was the launch of the Fossil-Fuel Subsidy Reform Communique. Almost 40 countries signed onto the statement, which pledges to eliminate subsidies to the fossil fuel industry. The communique said: “The International Energy Agency (IEA) highlights fossil fuel subsidy reform as a key component of a set of energy measures to combat climate change and estimates that even a partial phase-out of fossil-fuel subsidies would generate 12% of the total abatement needed by 2020 to keep the door open to the 2°C target.”
ADELAIDE Join us at the Green Left Weekly end-of-year party. Vegetarian-friendly BBQ lunch. Drinks available. No BYO please. Saturday December 19 at 12pm. Black Forest. For address phone Laura 0402 435 891. BRISBANE Come to a forum on Ecosocialism: A planet to save, a world to win. Hosted by Socialist Alliance. Saturday December 12 at 12pm. Brisbane Activist Centre, 74b Wickham St, Fortitude Valley. Ph Angus 0431 935 576. CANBERRA
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull made some very modest announcements at the COP21 climate change conference. He pledged Australia to the final years of the Kyoto protocol, an agreement that is about to lapse, and $800 million to developing nations for climate adaptation. This money is to come from existing foreign aid, which recent budgets have slashed. In contrast, Canada's new Prime Minister Justin Trudeau pledged $2.5 billion.
In our “A World to Win” series, Resistance: Young Socialist Alliance members have expressed their desires for a different future. From universal basic income, green economies and reproductive rights, we have discussed demands that can change the trajectory of our current world towards somewhere greener, freer and more just. In this final article of the series, Angus McAllen raises the demand of “Everything for Everyone”, an idea of a society without classes, inequality and poverty. ***
This year marks the 40th anniversary of the introduction of the Racial Discrimination Act in Australia, yet we still live in a country where racism runs deep. Legislative change, which was won as a result of the movements for black liberation and for women's liberation, was a step forward. However, legal changes alone cannot undo centuries of oppression. For this to be lasting we have to continue to campaign and organise against racism. We need to tackle the system that gives rise to it.
West Papuans, Aboriginal activists and supporters held a midday vigil outside the Indonesian consulate in Perth on December 1 to mark West Papuan Independence Day. The action also called for the end of the military occupation by Indonesia that has killed more than 500,000 West Papuans since 1961, when West Papua was annexed by Indonesia.