Under the banner of the Lock the Gate Alliance, about 100 demonstrators assembled outside Brisbane’s Convention Centre for the Queensland Gas Conference and exhibition on October 9 to protest their exclusion from the Australian Petroleum and Production Association’s (APPEA) inaugural Coal Seam Gas (CSG) Conference and Exhibition. Lock the Gate formally requested that its observers be permitted entry to the conference seminars concerning “social licence to operate”.
Sydney Stop CSG organised a human sign action at Sydney Park, St Peters, as its part of an Australia-wide week of action on this issue. A thousand people participated in this successful event.
Two recent events dramatised the state of economy and politics in the Spanish state: the Red Cross announced that this year the takings of its annual Flag Day would go to fight poverty and social exclusion in Spain, and education minister Jose Ignacio Wert told the national parliament that changes to the national education syllabus were aimed at “Spanishing” students in Catalonia. The Red Cross decision came as a shock across the country. People knew things were bad, but that bad?
Residents of the Nad Ali district staged a demonstration on October 6 against NATO-led troops in Lashkargah, the capital of southern Helmand province, Pajhwok Afghan News said that say. About 100 protesters accused the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) soldiers of killing innocent civilians during operations in the district, PAN said. District security was recently handed to Afghan forces. The article said: “[O]ne tribal elder claimed Afghan and foreign forces killed his son during a nighttime raid two days back.
The reality of the Vietnam War as a brutal, imperialist adventure has been carefully omitted from official ceremonies in the United States held to mark the 50th anniversary of the war’s beginning in 1962. Starting this year, the government will implement “a 13-year program to honor and give thanks to a generation of proud Americans who saw our country through one of the most challenging missions we have ever faced”.
Malalai Joya is an Afghan feminist and democracy activist who organised underground resistance to the Taliban regime and opposes the US-led occupation of her nation. Joya was elected to the Afghan parliament in 2005, and was undemocratically expelled from it for exposing the fundamentalist warlords in the US-backed Hamid Karzai regime. In an October 13 statement, Joya responded to the Taliban's attempted murder of 14-year-old Malala Yousafzai for the crime of organising for women's rights. * * *
Tommy Docherty, the legendary wit and former manager of Manchester United, once quipped after his team had suffered a humiliating defeat, “We lost 4-0 and frankly we were lucky to get the nil”. The Tories in Scotland know just how he felt, for they are so hated that out of 56 MPs they have just one, and they were lucky to get that!
Indonesia has further intensified its repression of West Papuan independence activists, in an apparent response to independence leaders speaking to foreign media. Eight independence activists from the West Papua National Committee (KNBP) were arrested in Wamena on September 29 and accused of bomb-making and treason, West Papua Media (WPM) said on September 30. The operation involved the notorious Australian funded and trained Detachment 88 anti-terrorist unit.
There is something incredibly frustrating about the fact that the Red Hot Chili Peppers played a concert in Israel, ignoring international pleas for them to cancel and observe the Palestinian call for boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS). Admittedly, I wasn’t even quite aware of just how much their decision stung until the day after their appearance at the Pic.Nic festival in Tel Aviv.