699

The global youth radicalisation of the 1960s illustrated the revolutionary potential of students in society. Young people and students have played a vital role in revolutionary struggles in the past and continue to do so today. In Latin America, young people are energetic leaders and participants in the social movements, and in Venezuela, young people view themselves as being the “foot soldiers” of the revolution.
Rachel Siewert, Greens senator for Western Australia, is concerned that the federal opposition hasn’t come out more strongly against the government’s welfare package. “We would get rid of Welfare to Work and look towards better options that support people”, she told Green Left Weekly.
As a schoolboy, Maximilien Robespierre gave a speech of welcome for King Louis XVI in a 1775 coronation ceremony at his college in Paris. Eighteen years later, Louis was decapitated by Robespierre’s revolutionary government. What, asks Ruth Scurr in her biography of Robespierre, had turned the dutiful student into a regicide, whose name in conventional history has left behind “no trace but terror”?
Azad Arman, a socialist from the Kurdish region of northern Iraq who fled his homeland in 1991 and is now living in Australia, said life in Iraqi Kurdistan today is “miserable”.
An article by Adele Horin in the February 15 Sydney Morning Herald reported the findings of a world authority on income inequality, Sir Anthony Atkinson, of Oxford University, which he presented at a seminar at the social policy research centre at the University of NSW.
Protests against tuition fees brought Canada to a standstill on February 7. In Toronto, as temperatures dropped to as low as -20°C, more than 6000 students took to the streets, demanding the government increase funding to make post-secondary education accessible.
PM John Howard is facing an election later this year and knows that his government’s support for Washington’s war in Iraq is highly unpopular — hence his vituperative attacks on Labor leader Kevin Rudd’s pledge to withdraw Australian troops.
Dita Sari is arguably the most well-known progressive activist in Indonesia today. A former trade union leader and political prisoner under the Suharto regime, she is now the chairperson of the People’s Democratic Party (PRD), which is the leading force in the new, broader National Liberation Party of Unity (Papernas). Sari was interviewed in Jakarta by Green Left Weekly’s Peter Boyle after the founding conference of Papernas in January, which selected her as its candidate for the 2009 presidential elections.
The Solomon Islands government wants the Pacific Islands Forum to initiate talks on an exit plan for the PIF’s Regional Assistance Mission to the Solomon Islands (RAMSI), Solomons foreign minister Patterson Oti told a PIF consultative meeting in Honiara on February 12.
“For two days now in parliament Treasurer Peter Costello has attacked ALP signatories of our sign-on invitation for Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez to visit Australia”, Kiraz Janicke from the Australia-Venezuela Solidarity Network told Green Left Weekly on February 15. “But Costello’s attacks have been both ridiculous and factually inaccurate.”
The call by Australian Greens’ leader Senator Bob Brown on February 9 for a long-term plan to phase out coalmining, exports and power generation has predictably stirred a barrage of outrage from the coal industry. Brown’s call also flushed out the Labor-Coalition bipartisan consensus of support for coal-company profits over the environment.
Mike Sambo, the national coordinator of Zimbabwe’s International Socialist Organisation, explained to Green Left Weekly’s Steve Marks on February 16 what lies behind the regeneration of class struggle in the country.