Issue 218

Australia

By Kylie Moon HOBART — More than 200 people rallied outside Parliament House on January 31, launching phase two of the campaign to save the Tarkine wilderness in north-west Tasmania. The rally was called by the Greens to coincide with the official

By Nick Fredman SYDNEY — Relations between the NSW Teachers Federation and the Carr Labor government have further soured over a dispute involving forced transfers from Lurnea High School. This is the third time the union has been at odds with the

By Bill Mason BRISBANE — The Queensland Labor government is on the edge of defeat, following a likely Liberal win in the vital by-election in Mundingburra on February 3. Despite late polls showing a trend toward the ALP hanging on to the

WASHINGTON, DC — Medical experts have confirmed that changes in global climate due to the burning of oil, coal and gas, and the release of ozone-depleting chemicals, are likely to accelerate the already unprecedented emergence of infectious

By Tim Gooden CANBERRA — Having previously voted to give the minority Liberal government two weeks to negotiate an enterprise agreement with them, Canberra unions discovered on January 30 that ACT Chief Minister Kate Carnell had rejected their

By Marcus Greville SYDNEY — Public pressure is continuing to try to force roads minister Michael Knight to honour the state Labor government's election promise to disband the construction of the controversial M2 motorway. However, the government's

By Lisa Macdonald The Australia Cuba Friendship Society (ACFS) is participating in a project initiated by the San Francisco-based aid organisation Global Exchange to help Cubans grow and process soy beans as a much-needed source of protein for

By Norm Dixon The Honiara home and office of the Solomon Islands representative of the Bougainville Interim Government, Martin Miriori, was fire bombed in the early hours of February 1. The attack, suspected to have been carried out by agents of the

By Sean Moysey CANBERRA — ACT Greens lead senate candidate Deborah Foskey launched the Australian Greens' work and employment policy outside the CES office in Civic on February 2. Foskey said that the "solution to unemployment is linked to sound

By Nick Soudakoff Canberra — A mass meeting of university workers on January 30 voted to reject the federal government's offer of a 5.6% wage increase funded by a loan at 4% interest.The meeting voted to begin a "low intensity" industrial campaign

By Jen Crothers The federal government has allocated $2.795 million over three years for an additional 175 undergraduate places at Southern Cross University (SCU) in Queensland. All places are funded under the Commonwealth Industry Places Scheme

By Mick White BRISBANE — Aboriginal leaders slammed the reconciliation process at a summit here last week. On Wednesday, January 31, at a rally at King George Square, protest leaders called for a return to the tactics of non-violent confrontation

By James Vassilopoulos CANBERRA — Campaign Against Nuclear Testing has decided to support the Democratic Socialists in the March 2 election. CANT is the group which last year organised actions opposing French nuclear testing and Australian mining

World

Tahitian politics after the tests As the French nuclear tests drew to an end, and with elections for the Territorial Assembly of French Polynesia scheduled for March, JAN MALEWSKI spoke to GABRIEL TETIARAHI, president of Hiti Tau, about Tahitian

By Lisa Macdonald The decision by well-known consumer rights advocate Ralph Nader to challenge US President Bill Clinton as a Green Party candidate in the 1996 presidential elections is causing some ripples in US politics. The 62-year-old Nader will

By Norm Dixon Workers in the small landlocked kingdom of Swaziland are spearheading a determined campaign for democracy despite threats of violence from traditional supporters of King Mswati III. Swaziland is paralysed by a general strike, which

The wave of strikes and political actions in December brought France to a standstill. Hundreds of thousands of people were involved in demonstrations that in some cities were larger than in 1968. ARUN PRADHAN and ANNE O'CALLAGHAN spoke to ALAIN

By Norm Dixon The spectre of the "third force" is again haunting South African politics after national police commissioner George Fivaz revealed that 33 police have been identified as suspects in the horrific Christmas Day massacre at Shobashobane in

By Eva Cheng Activists are putting local and international pressure on the Hong Kong police after eight participants in a peaceful demonstration of 30 on safety and health for toy workers were physically attacked or arrested on January 10. The

By Jennifer Thompson 750,000 Palestinians — 75% of registered voters — in the West Bank and Gaza Strip participated in the election of an 88-seat Palestinian Legislative Council and its president on January 20. The high participation rate — in

By Eva Cheng The Chinese government has made a few clumsy attempts recently to curb information exchange between the Chinese people and the outside world. A January decree on censoring financial news coming from foreign news agencies has sent a shock

To stop mass murder, we are sending this news with anger. You know the name of Tokyo as the most developed city of the world, but you do not know that the Tokyo metropolitan government plans treason against human beings at a new city centre,

Three anti-nuclear activists from Melbourne walked 1000 kilometres from Kiev in Ukraine, through Belarus to Smolensk in Russia. They were taking part in an anti-nuclear walk that began in Brussels in January and ended in Moscow on October 13, 1995.

By Norm Dixon The African National Congress has ruled out a continuation of power sharing after the 1999 elections. Under constitutional agreements prior to the 1994 elections, minority parties are guaranteed positions in the cabinet of the

Editorial

Coalition leader John Howard has pulled out all stops to buy the votes of environmentalists on March 2. His four year "green plan", costed at $1 billion, is more than double the amount promised by Labor. However, there's a poisoned chalice in its

Culture

Those who came before us Forgot their mission — Dropped the torch, And while they were asleep Darkness clothed itself as light And again stole through the doors. As the children of those times Is it not we — Who, opening our eyes, Must surely

Devil in a Blue DressTristar PicturesWritten and directed by Carl FranklinBased on the novel by Walter MosleyStarring Denzel Washington, Jennifer Beal and Don CheadleReleased nationally on February 8Reviewed by Norm Dixon Devil in a Blue Dress is a

"Militarism, Colonialism, and the Trafficking of Women: 'Comfort Women' Forced into Sexual Labor for Japanese Soldiers"By Watanabe KazukoBulletin of Concerned Asian Scholars, Vol. 26, No. 4, Oct-Dec 1994Reviewed by Eva Cheng Kazuko's lengthy article

Democracy Against Capitalism: Renewing Historical MaterialismBy Ellen Meiksins WoodCambridge University Press, 1995. 300 pp., $29.95 (pb)Reviewed by Neville Spencer The relative quiescence of working-class movements in the advanced capitalist world

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

Eyewitness: protest stories from IndonesiaBy Seno Gumira AjidarmaTranslated by Jan Lingard with Bibi Langkar and Suzan PiperSydney: Inprint Books, 1995. 138 pp., $14.95Reviewed by Michael Tardif The occupation of the Russian and Dutch embassies in

You Can Touch Me ... I'm Part of the Union — At a time when union membership is plummeting, one union has decided to take on a group of workers long neglected. Australian sex workers can now join the Victorian branch of the Miscellaneous Workers

The Mardi Gras Film FestivalAcademy Twin Cinema, SydneyFebruary 15-28, 1996Organised by Queer ScreenPreviewed by Philippa Marsden The Mardi Gras Film Festival, organised by community-based arts organisation Queer Screen, is being held again at the

ResistanceDirected by Paul Elliot and Hugh Keays-ByrneAt Chauvel Cinema, Paddington Town Hall, from February 15Reviewed by Trish Corcoran The Australian government has declared a state of emergency. Troops are being deployed to take action against

BabeA Kennedy/Miller productionReviewed by Mary Westwood If you go to see this film seeking only story and scenery, you will come away delighted and charmed. But on going further into the production, behind the scenes, you feel you have witnessed a

By Bronwen Beechey MELBOURNE — One of this city's most popular and enduring cultural events, the St Kilda Festival, is almost under way again. Perhaps best known for its street festival and free beach concert (this year featuring Chocolate Starfish