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Eighty people gathered on the steps of Parliament House on August 4 to mark Hiroshima Day, chanting “Land rights — yes! Uranium — no! Johnny Howard has got to go!”
In an August 2 media release, Sydney branch of the Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) announced that it rejects “any suggested implication that demonstrating against the injustices of globalisation and war means support for violence”. The MUA statement was made in response to a NSW police training video for the September APEC summit that featured footage of MUA officials participating in legal non-violent protests.
In a landmark case, a South Australian court has ordered the state government to pay $525,000 compensation to 50-year-old Aboriginal man Bruce Trevorrow for damages related to being taken from his mother and given to white foster parents.
Green Left Weekly is taking a one-week break from publication. The next issue will be dated August 22.
The Illawarra Aboriginal community led more than 200 protesters through the centre of Wollongong on August 2 in a day of action to express disgust and outrage towards the Howard government’s Northern Territory intervention plan.
The following is abridged from a July 29 report by the Residents Action Movement (RAM).
As striking workers at office supplies manufacturers Esselte Australia in Minto entered their seventh week of resilient action against forced Australian Workplace Agreements (AWAs), their boss was getting more desperate.
About 1400 nurses in Fiji, who began a strike on July 25, were joined on August 2 by thousands of teachers and other public servants, resulting in at least half of Fiji’s 20,000 public sector workers being on strike.
Around 100 posties and unionists rallied outside the headquarters of Australia Post on August 1 to protest the latest attempts by its management to undermine the wages and conditions of its employees and reduce its service to the community.
While the US corporate media trumpeted on the last day of July that US troop fatalities in Iraq were the “lowest for eight months”, according to the final Pentagon figure for the month, 80 US soldiers were killed — one less than the number killed in March. The July 2007 death toll was the highest of any July since the war began and was almost double the number killed in July 2006, when 43 US troops died. As of August 1, total US troop fatalities in Iraq since the March 19, 2003, invasion had reached 3659. As of June 30, a total of 54,100 US troops had been wounded since the invasion, with 35,600 of them requiring medical air evacuation out of Iraq.
On July 31, ALP environment spokesperson Peter Garrett and Labor leader Kevin Rudd — or at least larger-than-life puppets of them — lead a march of 150 people in Newcastle against the coal industry.
Survival International reported on August 2 that a large group of uncontacted Indians had fled to Bananeira, a remote village across the border in Brazil. It is believed that the Indians were escaping illegal loggers, who have been destroying their lands in their search for “red gold” (rare mahogany) in Peru’s rainforests. Jose Carlos dos Reis Meirelles Junior, head of the Indian Protection post near the Peru border, said in an urgent alert to the Brazilian government that, “We are on the verge of disaster. Illegal logging in protected areas in Peru is pushing the uncontacted tribes into Brazil, which could cause conflicts and lead to their appearance in places where they have never been seen before.” Because of their isolation, the Indians, among some of the world’s last uncontacted tribes, do not have immunity to diseases that could be contracted by contact with outsiders. Survival International director Stephen Corry said: “If it’s not ‘black gold’, it’s ‘red gold’. The Peruvian government must act now to stop the logging on the uncontacted tribes’ land. If it doesn’t, they could be the first people to be made extinct in the 21st century.” Visit <http://survival-international.org>.