Issue 272

News

National stop-work meetings of Community and Public Sector Union members on April 23 decided on a week of two-hour rolling stoppages as a part of a campaign in defence of jobs and conditions proposed by the national management committee of the CPSU.
Demand protection for Aboriginal site By Chris Spindler SYDNEY — The National Aboriginal History and Heritage Council protested at Bob Carr's Heritage Week address on April 22 to draw attention to its demand that the "Day of Mourning"
Footwear workers win demands By Bronwen Beechey MELBOURNE — Workers at the Michaelis Bayley footwear factory have ended an 18-day strike after reaching a settlement with management on April 24. The demands of the workers for a 10% pay
Meeting discusses political crisis in Indonesia By Janet Parker SYDNEY — "The Suharto regime is entering a phase of political crisis", began a lecture delivered by Max Lane to an audience of more than 100 people at Sydney University on
UTS council discusses occupation By Andy Gianniotis SYDNEY — The council of the University of Technology, Sydney, met on April 24 to decide who should pay the costs associated with the Easter occupation by students protesting against
Union members sacked at NMIT By Maurice Sibelle MELBOURNE
Youth tent embassy set up in Sydney By Andy Gianniotis SYDNEY — A youth tent embassy was set up at the Domain behind Parliament House here between April 20 and 26 to increase awareness among young people about the Street Safety Bill and
By Therese Moore SYDNEY — Prime Minister John Howard (Australia's richest public housing tenant) will find himself the recipient of a symbolic demand for a $21,000 per week rent increase at noon on Sunday, May 11. The demand will be presented
Guild blocks education campaign at UNSW By Melanie Bull SYDNEY — The education campaign on the University of NSW has run into a major obstacle: the student guild. Late last year a position paper, "Options 2000", released by the UNSW
Rally demands real jobs By Nicole Hilder WOLLONGONG — A "No Work for the Dole" rally organised by Resistance and the Democratic Socialist Party was held at Wollongong Mall on April 19. More than 100 people came to the event, which was
By Anthony Benbow PERTH — WA Premier Richard Court and labour minister Graham Kierath claim to take their jobs seriously. After a hard week at the office ramming the "third wave" anti-union legislation through the lower house without debate,
By Zanny Begg BRISBANE —It is almost certain that a referendum on whether the University of Queensland should affiliate to the National Union of Students (NUS) will be put to students during May. How activists should approach this referendum
Norm Haub, working-class fighter By Ray Ferguson BRISBANE — Many comrades and friends gathered at a service here on April 11 to say farewell to Norman Haub, who died two days earlier after a long illness. Norm was a battler all his life,
August 19 activist acquitted By Sue Bull CANBERRA — Martin Iltis was acquitted of assaulting police in the Magistrate's Court on April 24. The charge arose from the demonstrations at Parliament House on August 19. Police claimed Iltis
Concert highlights plight of Timorese asylum seekers By Vannessa Hearman MELBOURNE — A free concert and rally in support of East Timorese asylum seekers attracted 5000 people to the Treasury Gardens on April 20. The Painters and Dockers,

World

Diminishing forests Once, half of the earth's landmass was covered with forests. Today, this cover has been reduced to one-third. A map of the world's forest cover, produced by the World Conservation Monitoring Centre and World Wide Fund for
US bans new investments in Burma By Eva Cheng On April 22, US President Bill Clinton approved an order banning new US investments in Burma because of increased repression by the State Law and Order Restoration Council regime. But the decree
Turkey leads in persecution At least 45 journalists were detained in Turkey in March, according to the Journalists' Union of Turkey (TGS). "The number of journalists taken into custody was 45, those attacked and beaten numbered eight, 114
SUJATHA FERNANDES recently spent a year in India working with various women's groups and organisations. Following is an abridged version of her talk, sponsored by Green Left Weekly, to mark International Women's Day in Sydney. Last year cosmetic
By Lisa Macdonald LONDON — On April 21, Londons four airports, five major railway stations and the A40 freeway into the city were closed after coded bomb threats were phoned in, apparently by the Irish Republican army (IRA). The bomb threats,
30,000 march for strawberry workers By Caroline Lund WATSONVILLE, California — A massive march here on April 13 launched the largest union organising drive taking place in the United States today. Energy and hope were in the air.
ANKE HINTJENS recently returned from a visit to Goma in rebel-held eastern Zaire. I last visited Goma in 1993. This time I felt the difference immediately. Before, we didn't dare move around. There were roadblocks everywhere, with soldiers demanding
Plea to save Japanese bay The Japanese government has just closed off one of Japan's largest inter-tidal wetlands for a major reclamation project. The following is from a plea for international assistance from the Japan Wetlands Action Network.
By Max Lane On April 22, a kangaroo court in Surabaya handed down a prison sentence of six years to Dita Sari, leader of the Indonesian Centre for Working Class Struggle. The prosecution had demanded nine years. Dita's co-defendants, Coen
While sold to Australian tourists as a touch of Paris by the beach, Kanaky was seized by France only in 1853. In 1998 a referendum will be held, presenting voters with the choice of independence or continued French rule as the "French Overseas
By Renfrey Clarke MOSCOW — Of the new breed of labour protests, one of the first to make the news took place on February 27 in the town of Salair, in Kemerovo province in Siberia. After going unpaid for some nine months, several hundred
By Norm Dixon South Africa's trade union movement will hold mass rallies on May 12 in protest at the African National Congress-led government's failure to incorporate its "big issue" demands into the draft Basic Conditions of Employment Bill
Sri Lankan left leaders still held By Jean Dupont Three leaders of Sri Lanka's New Sama Samaja Party (NSSP) have been detained by police in connection with an arms cache police claim to have discovered in a building housing a health

Culture

Cooking for BridesCooking for BridesAvailable from Folkways, Sydney; Impact, Canberra; Basement Discs and Blue Moon Records, Melbourne; The Muses, Adelaide; 78 Records, Perth; or send $25 c/- 60 Ijong St, Braddon ACT 2612. (06) 249 8842 for
Blackness Blackness there is only Blackness.I can see, hear, feel, sense nothing,there is nothing to sense. It changes to grey.Now there are shapes, signs of others,but I can't see them — senses are so dulled. Now if I try I can see light
Polish poster exhibition By Bronwen Beechey MELBOURNE — Polish posters are regarded as highly sophisticated works of art and are remarkable for their innovative design concepts, their spontaneity, simplicity and daring. From May 1 to June
By Peter McGregor This article was written as a reply to a feature article by Tony Stephens in the April 10 Sydney Morning Herald. The Herald declined to publish it. Peter McGregor is one of the curators of Viet Nam Voices and a lecturer at the
Left on line Free Roisin McAliskey! — Roisin is imprisoned in Holloway Prison, London, without formal charges and without bail. She awaiting a decision by the German government to seek her extradition. She is pregnant and has been
Carla's SongDirected by Ken LoachWritten by Paul LavertyWith Robert Carlyle, Oyanka Cabezas, Scott GlennOpens May 1 Review by Neville Spencer Director Ken Loach has a reputation for consistently using his craft to promote struggles for
Human ecology, human economyMark Diesendorf and Clive Hamilton (eds)Allen & Unwin, 1997. 378 pp., $35 Review by Allen Myers This book is primarily intended as "a text for undergraduate and graduate students in environmental studies, human and
Chocolate Supa HighwaySpearhead Capitol Records Review by Sujatha Fernandes Chocolate Supa Highway may not live up to the funkiness of Spearhead's last album Home, and it may lack the confrontational political appeal of the Disposable Heroes of
Travel on Persian carpet GabbehWith Shaghayeh Djodat, Hossein Moharami, Rogheih Moharami, Abbas SayahScreening at the Verona Cinema, Sydney Review by Derek Nagle The gabbeh of the title is a particular type of decorative Persian carpet. In

Editorial

If you don't fight ... The failure of the ACTU's living wage claim for a $20 "safety net" rise and a general 8.75% increase in award wage rates indicates the weakened state of the trade union movement today. In rejecting the ACTU's claim on