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Stop the massacre in Libya! Power to the people

A February 26 statement by the Socialist Alliance in solidarity with the people's uprisings in Libya and the Arab world

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The Socialist Alliance extends its full solidarity to the people of Libya now being brutally repressed for demanding an end to the corrupt and unjust regime of dictator Colonel Muammar Gaddafi.

More than 300 people attended an “Experience Palestine” event organised by the Federation of Australian Muslim Students and Youth (FAMSY), at Coburg Town Hall on February 19.

They were greeted by mock Israeli “border guards” and questioned about their identity and right to enter the premises.

Once they had passed through the wood and wire “checkpoints”, visitors listened to guest speakers on Palestine and life under occupation before having a break to wander about the different exhibits.

Below is the text of a speech by Fremantle councillor and Socialist Alliance member Sam Wainwright to Green Left Weekly's 20th anniversary celebrations in Perth on February 12.

See also:
Greetings to Green Left from around Australia
Greetings to Green Left from around the world
Green Left turns 20!
Green Left’s 20 years of independence

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In Australia, a society created on the basis of racial division and superiority, the ugly face of prejudice and discrimination is, unsurprisingly, still very evident today.

Regardless of the often mentioned idea of a “multicultural” Australia, there seems to be a strong campaign to stigmatise, reject and isolate Muslims from mainstream values and norms.

Through recent comments and initiatives taken by several Liberal and Labor party politicians, the overt nature of anti-Islamic discrimination in Australia is as obvious as it is disgraceful.

I went down to Tasmania for the Southern Forests Convergence organised by activists at the Huon Valley Environment Centre (HVEC) over February 19 to 21. These folks are the heart and soul of ancient forest protection in Tassie and, as always, it was a great honour to work with them.

Invasions don’t bring democracy

It’s a pity the “coalition of the willing” invaded Iraq and Afghanistan. Maybe if they hadn't, the Iraqi and Afghan people would have been getting rid of Saddam Hussein and the Taliban themselves — right now. And building their own real organic democracies, step by step.

Under heavy public pressure, the South Australian government of Labor Premier Mike Rann appears to be wavering in its support for mining uranium in the Arkaroola wilderness in the state’s north.

On February 18, the Adelaide Advertiser gave front-page headlines to reports that Arkaroola, a privately-held nature sanctuary and ecotourism site in the Flinders Ranges about 600 kilometres north of the state capital, could be declared a national park.

About 50 angry policyholders — victims of the huge floods that inundated large parts of Brisbane in January — protested outside the South Bank offices of insurance company CGU on February 18. The noisy protest presented a list of demands to the company, the February 19 Courier Mail said.

I met Ali (not his real name) on my third visit to the children’s detention centre at the Melbourne Immigration Transit Authority (MITA) in Broadmeadows. Ali is a 16-year-old artist from Afghanistan. He has been held in Australian detention for five months — three months on Christmas Island and two months in Broadmeadows.

Killalea State Park again faces the threat of overdevelopment, says Peter Moran, the Greens candidate for Shellharbour in the NSW state elections.

Community members organised in the Save Killalea Alliance (SKA) claimed a victory in May last year when a $35 million development proposal backed by investment firm Babcock and Brown was scrapped.

The proposal would have allowed 106 accommodation lodges to be built on the pristine site. Developers had made an earlier proposal to build 202 residential lodges, pools, tennis courts, restaurants and a conference centre.

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