The Beyond Nuclear Initiative released the statement below on March 13. * * * The Beyond Nuclear Initiative (BNI) says radioactive waste management legislation passed this afternoon in the Senate is deeply flawed and will not slow down the campaign against the proposed Muckaty radioactive waste dump in the Northern Territory.
The Darwin Asylum Seeker Support and Advocacy Network released the statement below on March 7. * * * The Darwin Asylum Seeker Support and Advocacy Network (DASSAN) has been informed by asylum seekers inside the Northern Immigration Detention Centre (NIDC) that two Iranian asylum seekers attempted suicide this morning.
Melbourne, March 10. Photos by Chris Peterson
Ugandan newspaper the Observer reported on March 2 serious allegations against Ugandan troops in the Central African Republic (CAR), where they have been present since 2007, chasing the remnants of the Ugandan militia, the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA). The allegations include rape, child prostitution, arms dealing and the plunder of CAR’s timber and diamonds. Similar allegations have been made concerning the Ugandan army’s (the Uganda Peoples Defence Force, UPDF) 1997-2003 intervention in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Observer said.
After two decades of political deadlock, Africa’s oldest refugee population is losing faith in UN mandated peace negotiations. “No one will give us our freedom — we must take it!,” Sahrawi journalist Embarka Elmehdi Said told Green Left Weekly. Said sees little hope for a peaceful resolution to the crisis that has gripped Western Sahara since its independence from Spain in the 1970s. A child when her family fled the Moroccan invasion of Western Sahara in 1975, Said has spent most of her life in the Polisario run refugee camps on the Western Sahar-Algeria border.
The Occupy Wall Street movement, which began in New York in September last year and rapidly spread to hundreds of cities and towns across the United States, continues organising against the greed and exploitation of the “1%”. Occupy activists are mobilising against home evictions, supporting workers fighting for their rights and taking action against corporate exploitation and environmental destruction.
Since its November 20 election triumph, the administration of Spanish Popular Party (PP) Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has launched such a blitzkrieg of neoliberal policies, less democratic rights, state centralism and conservative social values that at times it seems as if the country has gone back 40 years in four weeks. Rajoy’s is not just one more example of a new government breaking promises due to “shocking revelations” that its predecessors had left the cupboard bare. (That old ruse has already led to public sector salary cuts of up to €500 a month.)
Hearings began last month into the case of five West Papuan independence leaders on trial for treason. They were arrested with hundreds of others when Indonesian troops attacked the Papuan People's Congress on October 19 last year. The conference had declared the Indonesian-occupied territory an independent state. West Papua was officially annexed by Indonesia's Suharto dictatorship in 1969 in a United Nations-supervised “act of free choice”, in which only 1022 Papuans were allowed to vote.
When Aboriginal rapper Darah Morris uploaded his first music video, "Aboriginal Style", to YouTube, it became an instant hit. Then it got deleted. "After 15,000 views on YouTube it got removed for 'inappropriate content', which I find really ridiculous," he tells Green Left Weekly. It's a familiar story. South Australian Aboriginal rapper Caper recently had the video for his song "How Would You Like To Be Me?" banned by Facebook after a complaint, despite the song gaining high rotation on daytime radio.
The Sun Herald in south Mississippi carried a small story on February 21 with far-reaching implications for the capitalist economy and democratic rights. The multinational corporation Northrop Grumman, manufacturer of aerospace and military equipment, opened a new centre in Mississippi devoted to the development of “unmanned aerial vehicles” (UAV), popularly known as drones. The article gushed over the vast commercial and investment opportunities for Mississippi. It said spending on UAVs is estimated to rise over the next decade from US$5.9 billion a year to $11.2 billion.
NT Consultation Report 2011 ― By Quotations Published by Concerned Australians 72 pages, hardcover, $15 www.concernedaustralians.com.au The latest Concerned Australians book, NT Consultation Report 2011 ― By Quotations, couldn’t have been released at a better time. The simple but powerful collection of quotes are selected from the federal government’s Stronger Futures consultations, conducted across the Northern Territory between June and August last year.
Cuban President Raul Castro has urged the Caribbean nation's citizens to contribute to a free and frank debate on the future of Cuba’s socialist project. For the Cuban Communist Party (PCC), the aim of this debate is twofold: to strive for consensus on a new Cuban model of socialist development and to empower Cuba’s working people to implement what has been decided. In other words, to advance a socialist renewal process in the face of entrenched opposition from within the administrative apparatus.
Anti-women campaigners in the Republican Party are dominating the discussion in mainstream politics and the Democrats' response has been to let them, says the February 29 Socialist Worker editorial that is reprinted below. * * * "Virginia is for lovers," goes the state's tourism motto. But if its right-wing politicians get their way, Virginia will be for turning women into human incubators.
Rural protests make up a large part of overall social unrest in China. But such protests had not received prominent international attention until the siege of Wukan, a village of 12,000 in Guangdong province, late last year. Just like the strikes in Honda plants in 2010, Wukan brought to light the deep-seated grievances of villagers in a dramatic way. The revolt featured the eviction of party officials and the police, the self-management of the village by villagers, and the stand-off against armed police in a siege for more than a week.
The Solidarity Choir in Sydney is celebrating its 25th anniversary on March 31. The event will take place from 7.30pm upstairs at the Gaelic Club, 10 Devonshire St, Surry Hills, near Central Station. The concert will feature songs from various groups and artists with a political orientation, such as Ecopella, the Sydney Trade Union Choir, the Solidarity Choir and "Andsome Friends". The event is also a fundraiser for the Asylum Seekers Centre and admission is by donation ($20/$15).