Issue 23

Australia

International protesters jailed

By Philip Smith

BRISBANE — Nancy Rolfe from Perth is among six international protesters serving 70-day jail sentences in Sarawak following anti-logging protests in early July. The convictions were the first in Sarawak for...

Residents fight sewage plan

By Bill Mason

BRISBANE — Gold Coast residents rallied at Southport on August 4 against a decision by the Gold Coast City and Albert Shire councils to pump 60 million litres of treated sewage effluent off the Southport Seaway.

...

MELBOURNE — Job cuts promised by the Victorian Labor government in its coming budget have already begun. The western regional office of the Ministry of Education has written to all school principals directing them to offer voluntary redundancies to all "ancillary staff" (lab...

'Don't tax recycled paper'

SYDNEY — The Australian Conservation Foundation, Friends of the Earth, and Greenpeace last week called on the federal government to retain the sales tax exemption on 100% recycled paper.

Their call was supported by Ecopaper, the company that pioneered...

By Dean Geoffrey

Tribespeople in the mountainous rainforests of Sarawak have been battling logging companies with a network of blockades for four years. Australian and other international activists recently participated in the protests, and several were arrested. Just...

Solidarity at ANU

By Anthony Hayes

-1>CANBERRA — Forums, films, stalls, demonstrations, music and social events were part of International Solidarity Week, at the Australian National University August 5-10.0>

-1>Forum topics...

Alternative plan for Newcastle

Story and photo
by Stephen O'Brien

NEWCASTLE — "Don't bulldoze what is unique", appealed community activist Doug Lithgow at the launch of the "Old Newcastle" strategy in the city's historic East End on August 7.

The...

Sand mining blockade predicted

By Bill Mason

BRISBANE — Queensland conservationists have warned of a Franklin Dam-style campaign against the Goss Labor government's decision to approve mineral sand mining in the Byfield national park region north of Rockhampton...

By Steve Painter

At present, if a person visits a doctor who bulk bills, Medicare covers the full cost, and the patient pays nothing directly (though they do through the taxation system). The Hawke government's proposal to impose a fee (probably of $3.50) on such visits...

By Peter Boyle

The offer by the United States to sell 300,000 tonnes of subsidised wheat to Yemen has sparked outrage from trade minister Neil Blewett. The nation that claims to be the home of free trade had elbowed its loyal partner Australia out of a "traditional...

By Bruce Threlfo

SYDNEY — Around 230 people attended the Living in Sydney conference, held on August 3-4. Initiated by the New Left Party, the gathering attracted a range of activists and people working in various fields of urban and social development.

The first...

BYRON BAY — The arrest of three boys for allegedly photocopying and attempting to use a $100 note has raised many questions.

The boys, aged 13-16, have been living under the care of Kids off the Streets (KOTS), Mullumbimby. They were arrested in Byron and spent the following few days in...

'Welcome' for Bush

By Dick Nichols

SYDNEY —Twenty-five years after Lyndon Baines Johnson, the last president of the United States to visit these shores, was met with mass demonstrations, the Hawke government has invited his successor, Emperor George, to meet...

By Peter Boyle

The unemployment rate jumped from 9.3% to 9.8% in July, dampening weeks of media speculation that an end to the recession was in sight. Some 83,000 more jobs were lost, bringing the total number lost in the last year to 305,000.

Unemployment was...

By Adam Hanieh

ADELAIDE — Israel, Syria, Turkey and Iran were the big winners in the Middle East as a result of the Gulf War, Dr Robert Springborg told a 200-strong public meeting here on August 5. The meeting was organised by the Gulf Peace Action Committee.

...

Qld march for abortion

By Anna McCormack

BRISBANE — For the first time in a decade, abortion activists are about to take to the streets here. On August 17, the Women's Abortion Campaign will lead a march from Parliament House calling on the state government to...

By Bill Mason

BRISBANE — The process of bringing corrupt Queensland police, politicians and racketeers to book in the aftermath of the Fitzgerald Inquiry reached its biggest milestone so far with the conviction of former police commissioner Terry Lewis on August 5....

By Chris Kearney

SYDNEY — Public transport here is inaccessible to almost 70,000 people who have a mobility handicap, according to Citizens for Accessible Public Transport (CAPT).

CAPT convener Ian Cooper told Green Left that all urban and country...

By Barry Healy

Public Servants are facing massive attacks on their working conditions, extraordinary leaked documents have revealed. The papers are the offers put to the government on July 28 by officials of the Public Sector Union in wages negotiations that have...

World

By Sally Low

LONDON — Standing on a creaking escalator descending into King's Cross Tube Station, next to the one that had stopped working altogether, I fought back a feeling of panic. It wasn't just the thought of the terrible fire some years ago but more the...

By Irina Glushchenko

MOSCOW — A new law on employment came into force on July 1 in the Russian Federation. For the first time since the late 1920s, the terms "unemployment", "unemployment benefits" and "labour exchange" are part of the official language of the Russian...

Young Soviet protesters jailed

Two young Moscow anarchists have been imprisoned awaiting trial for three months, and may face prison sentences of up to seven years after being arrested at a demonstration near the offices of the KGB on March 12.

The protesters, A. Rodionov and A....

Indonesian prisoners released

Two Indonesian Communist Party political prisoners, Rewang and Martosuwandi, were unexpectedly released from Cipinang Prison, Jakarta, on July 24, apparently on the orders of President Suharto.

Rewang should have been released in January 1988....

By Peter Annear

PRAGUE — There is little chance the temporary cease-fire, negotiated on August 6 by the Yugoslav federal presidency to stop fighting in Serb-dominated areas of Croatia, will hold.

The low-level civil war is being used to give leverage to Serbian...

By Randy Thomas

WALBRAN VALLEY, British Columbia — Fletcher Challenge has handed legal writs to tourists in British Columbia's Walbran Valley. The lawsuit claims "nuisance" and "intimidation" of the New Zealand-based logging giant's efforts to clear-cut one of the last...

By Irina Glushchenko

MOSCOW — One of the USSR's most militant workers' organisations has resolved to shift into open political organising and campaigning. At a meeting here on July 17, leaders of the Moscow Federation of Trade Unions (MFP) joined with various left...

By Norm Dixon

The collapse of the Stalinist regimes in Europe "forced a serious rethink on all aspects of the South African Communist Party's policies and we are still going through a process of quite developed debate", Ismail Momoniat told a large audience at the...

By Irina Glushchenko

MOSCOW — In the still-raw atmosphere of Soviet parliamentary politics, charges of "totalitarianism", "Stalinism" and even "fascism" are not unusual. In May, a scandal erupted in the Moscow city soviet when Socialist deputy Yury Khramov compared the...

By Karen Wald

HAVANA — After three decades of supporting the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa — sometimes with their lives — the Cuban people expressed one of the most heartfelt welcomes they have ever bestowed on a visiting foreign dignitary to Nelson Mandela....

Editorial

Outing a media beat-up

On July 23 Franca Arena, a Labor Party MP with a reputation for a generally positive stance on democratic issues, blotted her record with an outburst against supposed gay domination of the AIDS Council of NSW (ACON). She also attempted to draw a distinction...

Culture

By Susan Mackie

SYDNEY — Tahir Hussan comes from the Darfour area of western Sudan. A rich cattle growing area on the banks of the Nile it is the home to the delicious cuisine served at his new cafe, Taste of the Nile, just off Oxford Street at Taylor Square.

The...

By Vannessa Hearman

MELBOURNE — The Australia-Cuba Friendship Society here presented a series of documentaries, "Images of Cuba", on July 27 at Carringbush Library in Richmond. The Australian premiere of these Cuban documentaries was part of the group's July 26...

Think of Those Who Have Died

em = By Ernesto Cardenal
Translated by Allen Jennings

When you receive the nomination, the prize, the promotion,

think of those who have died.
When you are in the reception, the delegation, or the commission,...

Resources

The Banana Republic: A left analysis of Australia's economic problems, is a set of 10 audio cassettes featuring discussions with Ted Wheelwright, Tricia Caswell, Frank Stillwell, Sue McCreadie, Evan Jones, Jack Mundey, Rhonda Sharp and John...

By Melanie Sjoberg

As The Mirror Burns
A film by Christina Pozzan and Di Bretherton
Exclusive season Aug 23 to Sept 1 at the State Film Theatre, Melbourne
Sept 6-21, AFI Cinema, Paddington
Reviewed by...

By Pete Malatesta

Kuepper's gig at Sydney's Annandale hotel on August 2 was an eagerly awaited show. The hotel filled early giving, the support act a good audience. Juliet Ward played acoustic guitar and sang, accompanied by the plaintive guitar of Tim Rowlinson; with...

By Frank Noakes

PERTH — What have unionism, opera, internationalism and local government in common? Answer: Australian Railways Union (WA) assistant state secretary Tony Costa.

Tony is a colourful character, always ready with a witty quip or a biting comment....