A truck delivering waste from a fracking operation in Greene County, Pennsylvania, on April 19 was quarantined after being rejected by a hazardous waste landfill as too dangerous. The truck was carrying highly radioactive radium-226 in concentrations 86 times higher than allowed per Environmental Protection Agency limits. After being quarantined at the landfill, the truck was sent back to the fracking site, which is operated by Rice Energy. Radium, it should be noted, is a routine by-product of fracking — the fossil fuel extraction method behind the ongoing “natural gas boom”.
In 2006, a generation of Chilean secondary students learnt how to mobilise, blockade streets, raise demands and carry out occupations. But they also learnt how they could be defeated by a system capable of accommodating and coopting mobilisations. It is important to note that this revolt, referred to as the “penguin revolution”, did not arise out of nowhere. Its origins lay in the mobilisations for student transport concessions in 2001 and the creation of a series of collectives and small groups. Demands
The first School of Rebellion, held in association with Marxism 2013 over the Easter weekend in Melbourne, drew about 30 kids for a weekend of thinking, talking, making noise, art, music, poetry, mess and friends. It was declared “awesome” by a random sample of kids, teachers and parents and the program will definitely be back, bigger and better, for Marxism 2014.
The federal Labor government is desperate for you to believe that its “no advantage” refugee policy is working. And from offshore detention to impoverished “living in the community”, children and teenagers will be no exception to its increasingly cruel measures. Immigration minister Brendan O'Connor derided the mounting calls to have children and families removed from the Manus Island detention camp after its appalling conditions were exposed by the ABC’sFour Corners.
What do a conservative leader and a radical feminist have in common? More than we would have guessed, it seems. Recently an Islamic group held an event at the University of Melbourne. The seating was arranged according to gender, as is common with such events. A reporter from the Australian newspaper decided to go along and search for controversies; the promise of discussing jihad at the event must have lured the newspaper into seeing an easy opportunity to vilify Muslims. This has become a lucrative industry nowadays.
"Why are Sri Lankan Tamils seeking refuge in Australia? And why are we keeping them locked up?" was the theme of a forum on May 8, sponsored by the Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies (CPCS) and the Sydney Peace Foundation. About 30 people attended the meeting held at the University of Sydney. Brami Jegan from the Sri Lanka Human Rights Project told the audience that up to 100,000 Tamils were massacred by the Sri Lankan military at the end of the 28-year civil war between the Sri Lankan government and the Tamil Tiger guerrilla forces in 2009.
Hundreds of protesters from the indigenous advocacy NGO Survival International gathered outside Peruvian consulates and embassies in London, Paris, Madrid and San Francisco on April 23. They had gathered to urge the Peruvian government to reconsider expanding the Camisea gas mega-project. Camisea’s Bloc 88, deep in the Amazonian jungles of south-eastern Peru, is thought to contain over 10 trillion cubic feet of gas.
About 20 people gathered outside the Department of Immigration offices in Sydney on May 10 to demand freedom for a Tamil refugee named Ranjini and freedom for all refugees with negative ASIO assessments. Another protest was held outside Villawood detention centre on the same day. A statement by the Refugee Action Collective said: "The Sydney actions are part of national protests to coincide with the one-year anniversary of the detention of Ranjini and her two children in Melbourne. Ranjini has since had her third child, Paari, born in detention in January 2013.
When terrorist bombers killed three people in Boston, the FBI moved heaven and earth to apprehend them. When suppliers to Wal-mart and other big brands in Bangladesh killed more than 950 people (as of May 9) on April 24 in one of their garment factory death traps, the FBI sat on its hands. But those responsible — Wal-mart’s board of directors — are well known and could be easily apprehended.
About 70 people campaigning to save Peron Point from becoming another unwanted canal project braved heavy storms in an action on May 8. They marched from the property of the developer, Cedar Woods, to state parliament in Western Australia to present a petition of more than 8000 signatures. Greens MP Lynn MacLaren accepted the signatures and addressed the rally with several Labor politicians looking on. The vocal crowd chanted and listened to speakers including Greens candidate Dawn Jecks and outspoken town planner Greg Gooroo at an “open mic”.
“The anti-Semite Stephen Hawking can’t even wipe his own ass." “Someone should release the hand brake when he’s on a hill." “He should die already." These were just some of the comments left on Facebook after the most famous cosmologist in the world, Stephen Hawking, announced he was respecting the academic boycott of Israel.
In the aftermath of the bombing of the Boston Marathon, the Obama administration is broadening its definition of “terrorism” to include fighters for Black rights in the US. Washington has already used the term so indiscriminately against enemies internationally that it has become virtually meaningless. For example, every act of resistance to US occupation in Iraq and Afghanistan is labeled “terrorism”. By that definition, George Washington and the other American revolutionists were “terrorists” for resisting British rule.