Issue 224

Australia

By Chris Spindler

SYDNEY — A meeting of almost 100 people here on March 16 debated the question, "Where to for the ALP — which way for the left?". All speakers and contributions from the floor agreed that there needed to be a united

We received this letter last week from a subscriber in Aotearoa/New Zealand:

Dear Green Left,

Firstly, apologies for the delay in renewing my sub. I've enclosed part payment of $22 instead of the minimum sea mail rate of $50. Due to present

By Bill Mason

BRISBANE — Unionists at Comalco's Weipa bauxite mine in far north Queensland are disputing wage rises which the Industrial Relations Commission ruled on March 14 should be paid to 71 award workers. On March 15, Weipa Industrial

By Adam Hanieh

ADELAIDE — More than 7000 education workers packed Victoria Park Racecourse on March 13 in an unprecedented show of anger over the state Liberal government's refusal to grant a wage rise and negotiate workload conditions. The

By Fiona Carnes

HOBART — Almost four weeks after the state election, the make-up of Tasmania's parliament is finally confirmed: Liberals 16 seats, Labor 14, the Greens four and independent one (Liberal Party breakaway Bruce Goodluck). This

By Anthony Benbow

PERTH — The directors of electrical company Air Attention have been fined in excess of $9000 for intimidating a worker into signing a workplace agreement. This is the first such prosecution to succeed under the Court Liberal

By Sean Healy

MELBOURNE — Most polls on the March 30 Victorian state elections put the Coalition at least 10 points ahead in the two-party preferred vote. Premier Jeff Kennett has an even bigger margin over Labor leader John Brumby as

By Paul Howes

SYDNEY — On March 10, 400 people marched from Town Hall to Circular Quay to mourn the death of more than a million Tibetans who have died since the Chinese occupied Tibet in 1951. The protesters marched behind an eight-foot

By Max Lane

SPRIM (Indonesian People in Solidarity with the Struggle of the Maubere People), has added its name to those supporting the national day of solidarity for East Timor. The action has been called to focus attention on the Australian

Within two weeks of the federal elections, workers were told of brutal staff cuts planned for Telstra, which the Coalition intends to privatise. JENNIFER THOMPSON spoke to COLIN COOPER, national president of the Communications Division of the

By Jeremy Smith

MELBOURNE — March 10 always promised to test the nerve of the movement to return Albert Park to the public. Over the last two years, the 1996 Formula One Grand Prix has emerged as one of Victoria's hottest political issues. For

By Max Lane

Dr George Aditjondro was the first Indonesian senior academic to speak out against the Indonesian occupation of East Timor. He has also been an outspoken advocate of democratic reform and environmental policy in Indonesia. As a

By Beavis Marks

BRISBANE — As part of its "law and order" drive, the National/Liberal government has declared plans to amend the Juvenile Justice Act to give the courts more power to sentence young people. The amendments include: introducing

By Michael White

BRISBANE — At a rally held at Roma Street Forum on March 15, Aboriginal elders deplored the rising tide of racism in Australia. Murri Watch coordinator Sam Watson said politicians like the new member for Oxley, Pauline Hanson,

By Shane Hopkinson

NEWCASTLE — Cuts to elective surgery are expected in most Hunter Valley hospitals beginning the day after the state government's waiting list reduction program ends on March 31. The Mater Hospital, which was reportedly

By Bill Mason

BRISBANE — Following an outcry from environmentalists in late February, the state Liberal government was forced, on March 7, to reinstate parts of the pollution licensing system. Premier Rob Borbidge had intended to suspend the

World

By Norm Dixon

"Cubans in Klerksdorp — it sounds like a nightmare sequence from the commie bashing photo-comic, Grensvegter, circa 1979. But the doctors were greeted at the once racially exclusive hospital with no hostility, though much

Beijing and US threaten war in Taiwan

By Eva Cheng

Beijing has launched another series of missile "tests" and military exercises near Taiwan, using live ammunition this time and endangering air and sea transport in the area. The US

On March 5, the US Senate voted 74 to 22 in favour of a final compromise version of legislation tightening the US embargo on Cuba and punishing other countries that trade with Cuba. The US House of Representatives passed the package, known as the

By Jean-Pierre Lemaire

I would like to make some comments on the recent strike movement, then try to draw some political conclusions that are valid for the present and the future. First, we have witnessed the first phase of a movement that is

Share the dream, live the nightmare

PETER LUSK describes six months on the drier line at Fisher & Paykel in New Zealand "Peter, useless! Peter useless!", chanted my workmates. "Peter useless!", they roared. My name echoed around the factory for

By Stephen Marks

Looking from the tall hill called "El Cerro" on the western side of Montevideo harbour, you can see the destruction which neo-liberalism has brought to Uruguay. Wealth has been orientated towards speculation rather than

By Sujatha Fernandes

CALCUTTA — After six years of talks between Nepal and Bhutan over the fate of 100,000 Bhutanese of Nepali origin living in camps in eastern Nepal, the Bhutanese refugees have decided to take matters into their own hands.

By Norm Dixon

Thousands of West Papuan villagers have rebelled against the giant Freeport gold and copper mine in the Indonesian-occupied western half of New Guinea. The uprising caused extensive damage to the mine and forced its closure for

By Norman Taylor

The invitation to attend the Fourth World Atheist Conference in India was irresistible. I went as the delegate of the Australian Foundation of Atheists, one of 78 from around the world. There were delegates from 12 countries,

OLFAT MAHMOUD is director of the Women's Humanitarian Organisation in the Burj el Barajneh refugee camp in Lebanon, which houses 20,000 Palestinians in a space one kilometre square. She is currently on a speaking tour of Australia, organised by the

Editorial

According to some Coalition politicians, and some anonymous union leaders quoted in the media, the "turning point" in the federal election campaign was provided by ACTU secretary Bill Kelty's threat of a "wages break-out" that would follow the

Culture

Mighty AphroditeDirected by Woody AllenReviewed by Afrodity Giannakis Woody Allen, in Mighty Aphrodite, has apparently given up his exploration of relationships, having found the answer to his previous preoccupations. And the answer lies in the

OneWorld Online (http://www.xmediapartners.com ) — According to Bruce Cohen of South Africa's Weekly Mail and Guardian, there are now more than 600 newspapers on-line worldwide. Pooling the resources of the alternative media, OneWorld Online is a

A Royal Omission: A critical summary of the evidence given to the Hindmarsh Island Bridge Royal Commission with an alternative reportBy Greg Mead1995. $15.00Reviewed by Philippa Stanford The controversy around the Hindmarsh Island bridge has received

Socialism for a Sceptical AgeBy Ralph MilibandPolity Press, 1994. 211 pp., $37.95 (pb)Reviewed by Phil Shannon The death in 1994 of Ralph Miliband was a sad loss to the left. His last book, fortunately completed just before his death, leaves us with

Class and Class Conflict in AustraliaRick Kuhn and Tom O'Lincoln (ed)Longman, 1996. 176 pp. $24.95Reviewed by Phil Shannon As the low farce of the federal election ground on, there was talk by all mainstream parties of workers — would they or

12 MonkeysDirected by Terry GilliamStarring Bruce Willis, Madeleine Stowe and Brad PittReviewed by Norm Dixon You expect, when entering a cinema to watch the latest Hollywood mega-sci-fi-post-apocalypse-time-travel-killer-disease thriller, to leave

The Destiny of MeBy Larry KramerDirected by Frank McNamaraNew Theatre, 542 King St, NewtownFriday and Saturday 8pm, Sun 5.30pm until April 20Reviewed by Jen Crothers The Destiny of Me continues the biography of playwright Larry Kramer's alter ego,

1988By Andrew McGahanAllen and Unwin, 314 pp., $14.95Reviewed by Dave Riley I like Andrew McGahan's work. It's frank and genuinely shocking. This, his second published novel, leads into the first, raise, which impressed me when I read it last year.

MacbethBy William ShakespeareDirected by George OgilvieSydney Theatre CompanyWharf Theatre, Sydney, until April 4Q Theatre, Penrith, April 10-May 5Reviewed by Allen Myers The passage of centuries affects unevenly our perceptions of Shakespeare's

The Hemp Revolution
Written and directed by Anthony Clarke
Reviewed by Kathy O'Driscoll

Hemp, hemp, hooray! The Hemp Revolution is the latest documentary by Australian film maker Anthony Clarke, whose previous work includes The Panama Deception and Coverup: Behind the Iran-Contra Affair.