Issue 214

News

By Bill Mason BRISBANE — "Close US bases! Stop nuclear testing!" were the main slogans for a protest rally held in the City Square here on December 1, as part of national actions to present the US government with a "people's eviction notice" for
By Jennifer Thompson After seven weeks of strike action against CRA-owned mining company Comalco's refusal to negotiate a collective enterprise agreement, and its generous pay offers to workers who sign individual staff contracts at its bauxite mine
By Chris Spindler Despite the drought in the eastern states some rural producers have continued to make a profit this year. They have taken advantage of depressed land values and negative returns for the majority of farmers, to increase their land
Unions callfor nuclear test ban On November 27, the International Federation of Chemical, Energy, Mine and General Workers' Unions (ICEM) called for a total ban on nuclear tests and the elimination of nuclear weapons worldwide. The ICEM represents
By Geoff Spencer MELBOURNE — In the wake of two fatal shootings in mid-November — putting the number of people killed by Victorian police at 12 since January 1994 — the police force is moving to speed up the introduction of oleoresin capsicum
By Dick Nichols Members of the Community and Public Sector Union are presently electing a new president to fill a vacancy left by the resignation of former incumbent Peter Robson. The poll pits Alison Adler, of the broad left group National
By Tony Iltis CANBERRA — A weekend of protests aimed at removing US bases from Australian soil, and stopping nuclear testing and Australian militarism, began here on December 1 with a march of 100 people from Parliament House to the US embassy. A
By Karen Fletcher SYDNEY — The Carr government has decided to close the Dover Heights College of TAFE less than three weeks before the end of the academic year. Staff and students of the college have been left wondering what will happen to them
By Leslie Williams CANBERRA — On November 29, workplace delegates in ACT government services voted unanimously to call an all-unions stop work meeting for December 8. The meeting was convened by the ACT Trades and Labor Council (TLC) to discuss the
By Alex Bainbridge NEWCASTLE — After a decade of campaigning to end single officer ambulance crews, district ambulance officers launched an industrial campaign. On November 22 work bans were put in place after management closed the one-person
By Cameron Parker SYDNEY — After receiving more than 5000 submissions on aircraft noise the Senate Select Committee on Aircraft Noise has agreed with local councils and thousands of residents in describing Kingsford Smith Airport as "an
Conference calls for cuts to greenhouse gases By Pip Hinman The world's leading body on climate change confirmed at a Madrid conference on November 30 that the world is warming up, and that there could be dangerous climate changes unless the
By Chris Spindler The Chowilla flood plain, a wetland of international significance fringing the lower Murray near Berri, is in danger of succumbing to salinity. A five-year study, by the Commonwealth Science and Industry Research Organisation
By Baz Patton MELBOURNE — About 20 activists occupied the office of the multinational public relations company Burson-Marsteller (B-M) for five hours on November 29. The demonstrators, activists with the Native Forest Network (NFN), Coalition

World

Nigeria: US, Britain, EU refuse sanctions By Norm Dixon The governments of the United States, Britain and the European Union (EU) have defied calls for oil sanctions on the brutal Nigerian regime, choosing instead to put their economic interests
French workers and students defend social services By Sam Stratham MONTPELLIER, France — Hundreds of thousands of students, workers and unemployed people took to the streets around the country on November 30 to protest against the Chirac
By Sujatha Fernandes For some time the West, in particular the US government, has been warning about the arms build-up in south Asia. While the nuclear arms race between India and Pakistan is cause for concern, especially given the rise of Islamic
By Nick Soudakoff MANILA — Twenty-one trade unions and urban poor organisations have set up a tent city outside Congress to demand, among other democratic rights, an end to employers' attacks on unions. The Tent City campaign, begun on September 4,
In the final years of perestroika, when there was little in Soviet shops except bare shelves and bored salespeople, Russians could still comfort themselves: at least you could always get bread. In four or five varieties, at prices so low they are almost painful to remember: about 25 kopecks (at the time, a few US cents) for a half-kilo loaf.
The recent industrial action and the demonstrations in France are part of a campaign against the Chirac government's plans to cut welfare benefits and impose a tax under the pretext of trying to reduce France's Social Security deficit. Among the
By Norm Dixon The decision of the Iowa Board of Parole to release US socialist Mark Curtis is being celebrated by his supporters. "This is a tremendous victory", said an ecstatic Curtis, who will be freed sometime after December 7. Curtis has spent

Culture

New MoonBy Abderrahmane AbdelliReal World RecordsReviewed by Jenny Long This album from Abdelli is an enjoyable introduction to the musical culture of the Berbers of the Kabyl mountains east of Algiers. The struggle to preserve Berber culture is an
The Coming Plague — Newly emerging diseases in a world out of balanceBy Laurie GarrettVirago, 1995. $29.95Reviewed by Dot Tumney "Ultimately, humanity will have to change its perspective on its place in Earth's ecology if the species hopes to stave
Haiti: Dangerous Crossroads
Edited by NACLA
South End Press, 1995
256 pp., US$15.00 (pb)
Based on highly reliable international contacts, leaked documents and horoscopes from several TV magazines, Nostradamus' Media Watch presents a highly accurate forecast of political events across the globe. Nigeria accused of political assassinations
Social LivingBurning SpearBlood and Fire through Larrikin EntertainmentRasta BusinessBurning SpearHeartbeat through Larrikin EntertainmentReviewed by Norm Dixon Burning Spear aka Winston Rodney is one of reggae's most underrated exponents. He is also
Take and eat it she said This is my body which is given for you anorexia, bulimia constant scrutiny plastic surgery cellulite silicone dieting obsession exercise pressure To this I do not say NO but WHEN I do say NO No one believes me — she was
StonewallDirected by Nigel FinchBased on the book Stonewall by Martin DubermanReviewed by Jon Strauss Stonewall left me with a feeling that something was lacking. Yet this factionalised account of the lives of a half-dozen gay New Yorkers in the
Andre Malraux: A BiographyBy Curtis CateHutchinson, 1995. 451 pp., $49.95 (hb)Reviewed By Phil Shannon Andre Malraux — now there was a writer to test the value of pigeon-holes. Stock market speculator on the Paris Bourse and temple-robber in
He describes himself as a cultural terrorist, but most would remember him as the outspoken lead singer of punk band, The Dead Kennedys. JELLO BIAFRA has shocked and stirred middle-class USA with his radical proposals for drug law reform ("grow more
Programs of interest on Sydney Community TV (UHF 31) — Perleeka, indigenous Australians' program, nightly, 7pm. Art Experimenta, Mondays, 8pm and 11.30pm, and Tuesdays, 3am and 6.30am. Bent TV, Gay and lesbian program, Thursdays, 10.30pm and
Alana Kerr MELBOURNE — The Women's Circus' new show, Leaping the Wire, is playing at The Old Brickworks in Brunswick until December 9. A version will be performed at the Sydney Festival in early January. The Women's Circus is a feminist theatre

Editorial

The right-wing, anti-Asian, anti-environmentalist Labor backbencher from Kalgoorlie, Graeme Campbell, has finally been dumped by his party. The latest of his many outbursts against Asian immigration, at a meeting organised by Australians Against