Issue 1231

Australia

It’s understandable to feel enraged watching the news about our climate: record-breaking summer temperatures across Europe, the disappearing Arctic ice sheet, deforestation of the Brazilian Amazon. It’s depressing stuff. Green Left is an antidote.

A protest against GDH in Brisbane on August 1

Stop Adani activists held a week of protests at the end of July targeting multinational engineering design and construction consultant GHD.

More than 700,000 Australians are struggling to survive on $40 dollars a day while $200 billion is being set aside over the next 10 years for Australia’s military, largely to support US wars, according to the Independent and Peaceful Australia Network (IPAN).

An August 1 protest outside the Brisbane headquarters of GHD Engineering — the company planning to build Adani's mine. Protesters called on the company to terminate its connection with Adani. They also promised to repeat their protests and disruption if GHD continues with the climate-destroying project.

Eighty people attended the launch of Ben Hillier’s new book Losing Santhia, which was organised by the Tamil Refugee Council on July 27. Santhia was a Tamil refugee from Sri Lanka who had been a member of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and who died in Indonesia in 2017.

Hillier, an editor of Red Flag, visited Indonesia and Sri Lanka to find out more about her life. He said her story was not unusual, as thousands of Tamils had fought and died in the struggle for national liberation.

Kurdish community members and supporters gathered on July 27 to celebrate the 7th anniversary of the Rojava Revolution in northern Syria.

Just days out from first-year Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) students beginning exams, University of Technology Sydney’s (UTS) Dean of Science Professor Dianne Jolley sent out an email saying the course was to be discontinued.

About 100 waterside workers and supporters rallied outside the offices of global container terminal operator DP World (DPW), in Martin Place on July 30. The Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) is currently in a dispute with DPW, which has threatened to sack 200 workers and replace them with casuals.

A decades-long feminist campaign to remove abortion from the anti-woman NSW Crimes Act is likely to take one more step towards victory with debate on a pro-choice private members' bill to begin in state parliament on August 6.

Protesters rallied outside the Sydney CBD and Parramatta offices of multinational engineering corporation GHD on July 30. GHD was recently awarded the contract for the engineering design for Adani's huge coal mine slated for the Galilee Basin, in central Queensland.

A rally was held outside the United States Consulate in Martin Place on July 27 to condemn the US government's campaign to overthrow the government of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro through illegal sanctions and threats of military intervention.

World

Turkey has begun a new bombing operation on the Maxmur (Makhmour) refugee camp in Iraqi Kurdistan (Bashur/Southern Kurdistan), which is home to over 13,000 Kurdish refugees.

Over the past few weeks, United States President Donald Trump launched a series of white nationalist diatribes directed against four US Congresswomen of non-white background. 

Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte vetoed the Security of Tenure Bill on July 26, which seeks to regulate the practice of job contracting (labour hire) in the country, writes Merck Maguddayao.

There were protests galore in the build up to South Africa’s May 8 national elections, which coincided with the 25th anniversary of the people’s victory against Apartheid. Protests occurred in many parts of the country but predominately in Gauteng, the nation’s industrial heartland, and in the Western Cape, with its legacy of colonialism, writes Trevor Ngwane.

The assassinations of six activists from the grassroots Revolutionary Bolivar and Zamora Current (CRBZ) in Barinas State on July 27 sparked immediate outrage and expressions of solidarity from Venezuelan and international activists.

July 19 marked the seventh anniversary of northern Syria’s Rojava Revolution. On that day in 2012 the nascent People’s Protection Units (YPG) took control of the Kurdish-majority city of Kobanê. The outnumbered forces of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad surrendered and were allowed to depart (without their weapons). Other Kurdish cities and towns in the north were soon liberated as well.

The United States and Britain are ensuring that tensions remain high in the Straits of Hormuz as they continue beating the drums of war against Iran.

Though Boris Johnson was swept to power with apparent ease in the leadership election, deep divisions in parliament and the British public at large mean that delivering his three promises “deliver Brexit, unite the country and defeat Jeremy Corbyn“ will be a great challenge, writes John Lawrence.

Dr Lisa Natividad is a Chamorro woman, activist and academic from Guam (Guahan), a Pacific island nation that the US continues to occupy, deny full democracy and self-determination because it is the site of massive complex of US military bases. She spoke to Green Left's Peter Boyle on her way to Darwin where she will be a keynote speaker at the Independent Peaceful Australia Network (IPAN) conference on August 3-4, 2019.

Six members of the Bolívar and Zamora Revolutionary Current were murdered on July 27 by an as yet unidentified armed group, presumably mercenaries paid by sections of the local right-wing landowners.

Analysis

School Strike 4 Climate outline just 10 of many reasons why you should join students when they go on strike to save the climate on September 20.

Despite overwhelming evidence that the world has already passed certain tipping points, setting off large and unpredictable changes in the climate, why are governments still refusing to act on the scale and pace required, asks Pip Hinman?

Not many people know about the role of IT giant HP in Israel’s grave violations of Palestinian rights and its system of military occupation, racial segregation and oppression.

Thank you Miranda Devine for your wild overreaction to the bill before NSW parliament to treat abortion as a health issue, as it will no doubt lose you and News.com a lot of support.

In a 40-minute interview with the Guardian, federal “opposition” leader Anthony Albanese's arguments for Labor’s serial capitulation to the Coalition government were weak, inconsistent and based on a fool’s reading of political reality.

Culture

While researching Japanese working-class resistance to World War II, Kaye Broadbent discovered in a Japanese university archive Masao Sugiura’s 1964 memoir, detailing the formation and activities of the Shuppanako Kurabu (Print and Publishing Worker’s Club). Based upon Sugiura’s 1981 second edition, the English translation of Against the Storm provides an inspiring account of how Sugiura and his comrades were able to organise and sustain links between workers, despite increasing wartime repression by the Japanese military regime.

Welcome attention was drawn to the issue of poverty with the 2014 publication of Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-first Century, which became an international bestseller.

The Political Economy of Inequality by Frank Stilwell, Emeritus Professor of Political Economy at the University of Sydney, gives a more rounded overview of the issue in a more manageable volume than Piketty’s hefty magnum opus.

Legendary Scottish-Australian folk singer Eric Bogle, best known for his anti-war classics “And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda” and “The Green Fields of France”, will headline the Sydney Folk Festival this month.

Political album sleeves from July 2019

The world is a dark place in August 2019, but it's inspiring some great protest music to give you hope and raise a smile. Here are the best new albums that related to this month's political news. What albums would you suggest? Comment on TwitterFacebook, or email