Fallout From Fukushima By Richard Broinowski Scribe, 2012 273 pages , $27.95 (pb) The Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan last year was no accident, says Richard Broinowski in Fallout from Fukushima. Sitting a nuclear reactor on an “active geological fault line where two of the earth’s tectonic plates collide” was courting catastrophe from an earthquake and tsunami like the one that duly hit the Pacific in March last year.
The Sacrifice By Bruce Mutard Allen & Unwin, 2012 Paperback, 252 pages I don't know about you, but Australia's World War II years are obscured in my mind by a melange of family reminiscences and ad hoc snippets of history. My parents were of the generation caught up in the war effort locally and offshore, so the family album began life with pics of folk in khaki. Us baby boomers were delayed sprogs of them days. But as far as I was concerned, and those of my generation, them days were their's not mine.
A popular movement against tar sands oil production and pipeline transport is on the rise and gathering steam in Canada. Its biggest expression so far came on October 22 when 4000- 5000 people rallied in front of the British Columbia legislature to send a forceful message to the tar sands industry and its political representatives. “No tar sands pipelines across BC! No oil tankers in coastal waters!” read the lead banners.
Operation 8: Deep in the Forest Directed by Errol Wright & Abi King-Jones CutCutCut Films www.cutcutcut.com Operation 8 is an emotive, shocking, disturbing, informative and captivating documentary on the 2007 “anti-terror” raids that took place across in New Zealand targetting Maori activists. The film is essential viewing for indigenous peoples fighting for sovereignty, their supporters and activists in general.
The following “Appeal of asylum seekers” was released by refugees on Nauru on October 31. It was addressed to Prime Minister Julia Gillard, Australian MPs, the Nauru government, human rights commissions and the “rest of the world”. The men said on November 1 that they would begin a group hunger strike "for unknown time". "This is a clear message that we are not happy here, we want to go back from this Hell to Australia and we request to the Australia government to start our processing." ***
The statement below was released by the Sydney Refugee Action Coalition on October 31. *** At 6.00pm Nauruan time, an Iranian asylum seeker attempted to hang himself from a light pole inside the detention centre. The man jumped from the pole with a sheet around his neck but was other asylum seekers quickly took his weight. Asylum seekers had gathered around the pole appealing with the man, who was on the pole for around 15 minutes before he jumped. He was crying and saying, “I want to die,” and “I am tired of my life”.
*URGENT UPDATE* Refugee solidarity activists in Melbourne have called for supporters of asylum seekers to join them outside the Maribyrnong Detention Centre. They've been protesting since 7am this morning. Police have arrived to break the community blockade of the detention centre in mass numbers. The protest is taking place at Maribyrnong Detention Centre, 35 Hampstead Road, Maidstone. * * * The Refugee Action Coalition Sydney released the statement below on October 31. * * *
The International State Crime Initiative (ISCI) released a report on October 8 documenting a forced eviction that took place in Papua New Guinea’s capital, Port Moresby, on May 12. Residents of Paga Hill had their homes demolished en masse by the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary.
The University of Sydney ended last year with a $117 million surplus, but is moving close it's Koori Centre. The Koori Centre has supported Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students at the university since 1989. It also coordinates the teaching of Indigenous Studies and provides a library, comfortable meeting space and computers. The Centre provides support staff whose role was to help Aboriginal students through their degree. Instead of maintaining and expanding the Centre, student says the university is seeking to close it.
About 500 people protested at the Fremantle Reclaim the Night rally, which took place on October 26. The rally demands were: end violence against women, stop victim blaming and consent education in schools. For details see: Freo holds biggest women's rally for a decade
Socialist Alliance activist and feminist Liah Lazarou gave the speech below to Adelaide’s Reclaim the Night rally on October 26. * * *
The statement below was issued by asylum seekers on Nauru following their protest on the afternoon of October 29. Republished from the Refugee Action Coalition Sydney. * * * ASYLUM SEEKERS IN NAURU TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN We heard several times from different authorities that the sending of us [to Nauru] is an argument of giving lessons to those who have intention of coming to Australia through the sea by people smugglers.
About 200,000 people marched in London, Glasgow and Belfast on October 20 against the austerity programs of British Prime Minister David Cameron's government. The trade unions that called the actions put the numbers of participants at: London 150,000, Glasgow 10,000 and Belfast 10,000. Marchers were of all ages and backgrounds — trade union members, students, families affected by cuts to health and social services and women's rights advocates, among others.
As of October 27, Hurricane Sandy, a storm so freakish it has been termed “frankenstorm”, had killed at least 38 people in Caribbean nations and was bearing down on the north-east of the United States.
Under the stewardship of several British Columbia indigenous First Nations, close to 5000 people from all over the Canadian province came together on October 22 to demand the planned Enbridge and Kinder Morgan pipelines be stopped. For the past few months, people all over BC had been recruiting people to join the rally and to engage in peaceful civil disobedience.