The article below is an abridged US Socialist Worker editorial in response to United States President Barack Obama's October 21 announcement that all US soldiers would be withdrawn from Iraq by the end of the year. * * * More than a million Iraqis dead. Nearly 5000 US military personnel killed, and about 32,000 more maimed, physically and psychologically. About US$4 trillion spent on war ― money that could have paid for schools, health care and programs to create jobs.
Serious flooding in Thailand has affected millions of people. Houses, property and infrastructure have been seriously damaged. Factories and workplaces have been closed and hundreds of thousands of people have become temporarily unemployed. Agricultural land has been flooded, leading to further loss of incomes. Millions of people who are living modest lives will have their incomes and savings drastically lowered and the economy will be dragged down. The waters are predicted to remain high for at least a month.
On October 18, about 200 students held a “Save Political Economy” demonstration at the University of Sydney, organised by the Political Economy Students Society (EcopSoc). The university administration is considering abolishing political economy as a separate department. The department was established in the 1970s after a big campaign of protests and occupations by students and staff who wanted economics courses that taught a wide range of theories — not just the right-wing orthodoxy.
The Philippines, one of the poorest Asian nations with a huge foreign debt ― caused by successive corrupt governments ― remains a place of simmering class tension. In the past six weeks, there have been mobilisations around a range of issues. On October 11, there was a national day of action against rising energy costs. There were protests right across the archiapelago. Residents turned off their power for half-an-hour and created a “noise barrage” with whistles and horns.
The October 23 declaration of Libya’s “liberation” by the National Transitional Council (NTC), the de-facto government since taking Tripoli from former dictator Muammar Gaddafi on August 21, was a showcase victory for the West’s vision of how the Arab democratic awakening should progress. An uprising began in Libya on February 17 — part of the popular rebellion that has broken out against dictatorial regimes across the Arab world. The Gaddafi regime's brutal repression — carried out with Western-supplied weapons — meant the rising turned into a civil war.
See also: Unions respond to lock out: 'This is blackmail' Occupy Sydney supports Qantas workers Unions stand up to Qantas management All of Green Left's extensive Occupy coverage “I don't understand what the Occupy protests are all about,” is one common complaint in response to the global movement against corporate power.
The decision by Qantas management to ground the airline's fleet and look out its workforce has caused uproar around the country. However, the mainstream media have overwhelmingly focused on the position and arguments publicly put by Qantas CEO Alan Joyce.
In September, Green Left Weekly spoke to Mamdouh Habashi and Dr Muhammad Hesham, members of the Egyptian Socialist Party (ESP), about developments in Egypt since the popular uprising overthrew dictator Hosni Mubarak on February 11. The ESP is one of several new parties formed since Mubarak's ouster. A longer version of this interview can be found at ThawraEyewitness.blogspot.com. * * * What is the role of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF, who has been in power since Mubarak's ousting)?
Despite the police brutality faced by Occupy Melbourne protesters just over a week before during their eviction from City Square, Occupy Melbourne returned to the streets on October 29. About 500 occupiers assembled at the State Library with the same anti-corporate message and a louder voice. After the meeting at the State Library, there was a march to Treasury Gardens where the general assembly (GA) was held. During the march, the numbers swelled to 1000 or more.