Issue 278


The final "Justice Tour: Fighting Hanson's Racism" meeting, in Sydney on June 13, was the culmination of a very successful national tour to encourage people to join the struggle against the racism of MP Pauline Hanson and to fight the racist polices
By Ivars Reinfelds and Peter Johnson WOLLONGONG — Two hundred and fifty angry residents packed into the Warrawong Community Centre on June 1. They heard barrister Tim Robertson describe how the Carr government, on May 29, rushed legislation
TWU truck ban wins pay rises By Bill Mason BRISBANE — Nearly 20 transport companies in Queensland have agreed to pay wage increases of 11%, in the face of nationwide black bans by the Transport Workers Union on employers who refuse to pay
First lockout under Workplace Relations Act By Rob Graham ADELAIDE — All 20 workers, members of the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union, at Radco Crane Hire have been locked out and subsequently sacked after the collapse of
Homeless Aborigines evicted DARWIN — At sunrise on May 29, police raided a camp of homeless Aboriginal people occupying bush land at Lee Point. The group — who had camped there for 18 days in defiance of eviction orders from the minister of
Nurses campaign for better deal By Kim Linden MELBOURNE — At a stop-work meeting of 3000 at Dallas Brooks Hall on June 12, Victorian public sector nurses voted unanimously to start industrial action as part of a campaign to improve
Students force libraries victory By Kylie Moon HOBART — On June 10, the vice chancellor's executive at the University of Tasmania decided to postpone for at least 12 months a plan to merge the two main science libraries into the main
UN$W to charge up-front fees By Helen Jarvis SYDNEY — The council of the University of NSW decided on June 2 by the slimmest of margins (10 votes to eight) to accept fee-paying local undergraduates from 1998, and so to join the
ANU activists commit to NUS referendum By Martin Iltis CANBERRA — Australian National University student activists are busy collecting the 800 signatures necessary to force a referendum on affiliation to the National Union of Students
By Trish Corcoran SYDNEY — On May 12, members of the United Residents Action Group blockaded bulldozers that were about to begin work on a new development in the Berowra Valley. Landcom — the NSW government developer — had put in an
By Bill Mason BRISBANE — "Young people in Australia will overwhelmingly reject Pauline Hanson's attempt to set up a One Nation youth wing", according to Zanny Begg, Brisbane organiser of the socialist youth organisation Resistance. "Hanson's
By Tom Flanagan DARWIN — The Aboriginal traditional owners of the site of the proposed Jabiluka uranium mine have taken their struggle to stop the mine to the Federal Court. The validity of the Jabiluka mineral lease is being challenged by
WA unionists prepare for a fight By Anthony Benbow PERTH — Richard Court's Coalition government and its mates in the Building and Construction Industry Taskforce (whose main "task" consists of attacking construction unions) are trying to
Festival Records picketed By Shane Bentley & Paul Howes SYDNEY — After Festival Records issued redundancy notices to 50 workers at its Pyrmont plant on May 12, members of the National Union of Workers set up a picket line to demand a
Student editors' appeal fails By Bronwen Beechey MELBOURNE — The former editors of LaTrobe University's student newspaper, Rabelais, face criminal charges following the rejection of an appeal to the Federal Court. On June 6 Justice Ron
Tasmanian upper house vote records far right's decline By Tony Iltis LAUNCESTON — On May 31, in elections to Tasmania's Legislative Council, voters rejected the homophobic, religious fundamentalist conservatives who have traditionally
Campaign to defend Tasmanian forests By Sarah Stephen and Kylie Moon HOBART — The Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement, due to be signed in the next month, was the major focus for activities around World Environment Week this year. It is
Police, loggers break East Gippsland blockade By Marcel Cameron MELBOURNE — Thirty-nine activists have been arrested after attempting to stop the clear-felling of wilderness quality old-growth forest in East Gippsland. The blockade of the


Last October 21, the pilot of a Cuban airliner noticed a US-registered light aircraft releasing a white or greyish mist. Seven weeks later, an insect plague of plant-damaging thrips, previously unknown in Cuba, was discovered in a state farm. The
Did Dita do it? By Max Lane @box text intro = On June 12, the private Indonesian TV station SCTV broadcast a report stating that riots had broken out in Medaeng prison, Surabaya. Dita Sari, president of the Indonesian Centre for Labour
More than 100 activists, researchers and government officials from some 40 countries gathered in Santa Clara, Cuba from May 18-22 for the fourth meeting of the Pesticide Action Network. PAN is an international coalition of over 400 activist groups.
Torture by UN 'peace keepers' By Norm Dixon Italian television on June 6 broadcast photographs of Italian troops torturing detainees during the US-led United Nations "Operation Restore Hope" occupation of Somalia in 1993. The photographs,
Kurdish opposition leaders sentenced ANKARA — The State Security Court (DGM) ruled on June 4 that the pro-Kurdish People's Democracy Party (HADEP) is linked to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and sentenced party officials and
The mainstream press has made much of entries in Che Guevara's diaries, made more than 32 years ago, that were critical of the conduct of the young Laurent Kabila, now leader of the Democratic Republic of Congo. There is more to the story than the
By Renfrey Clarke MOSCOW — Workers in one of Russia's main industrial regions are organising themselves for a day of coordinated protest action, in what could be a landmark development for the rise of a broad, militant labour opposition to the
Leaks from Japan N-plant Radioactive water leaked from the Shikoku Electric Power Company's reactor in Ikata City, western Japan, on June 5. The leak was the latest in a series of nuclear accidents and cover-ups, the worst being the March 11
By Norm Dixon More than 2 million South African workers participated in a general strike on June 2 in support of demands for better conditions of employment. The strike was called by the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) and
By Nicos Yannopoulos The Albanian insurrection is on the defensive. Since March 10, the insurrection has been waiting. Unfortunately, this is probably not a "war of position", but a significant decline in the movement. This is partly due to
By Max Lane The massive and militant mobilisations during the official election campaign in Indonesia were a major setback to the Suharto government's image of stability. Hundreds of thousands of people took to the streets, major shopping
By Norm Dixon Thirty-two years of US-backed dictatorship have left Congo (Zaire) in a desperate economic and social situation. The personal wealth of exiled tyrant Mobutu Sese Seko is estimated to be as high as $10 billion, almost equivalent to
By Eva Cheng In Mongolia's May 19 presidential election, Nachagyn Bagabandi, chairperson of the Mongolian People's Revolutionary Party (MPRP, formerly the Communist Party), won with 61% of the vote, defeating incumbent President Punsalmaagiyn


Prisoner of the Mountains (Kavkazski Plennik)A film by Sergei BodrovA Dendy Films release from June 26 Review by John Tognolini Memories of the Chechen-Russian war are still fresh. The towns being bombed into the stone age by Boris Yeltsin's air
A comic look at a state in serious trouble By Bronwen Beechey MELBOURNE — Rod Quantock has made a huge contribution to Australian comedy. He wrote and performed in the ground-breaking TV series Australia, You're Standing In It, opened and
Portraits from a time of genocide Facing Death: Portraits from Cambodia's Killing FieldsAustralian Centre for Photography, Paddington (Sydney)Tues-Sat, 11am-6pm, until July 5. When Cambodian rebels and Vietnamese troops overthrew the Pol Pot
For the Hell of It: The Life and Times of Abbie HoffmanBy Jonah RaskinUniversity of California Press, 1996. 315 pp., $45 (hb) Review by Phil Shannon High up the league ladder of US '60s icons is Abbie Hoffman. Co-star, with Jerry Rubin, of the
Good karma Last Stop Heavenly HeightsKarma CountyTWA Records Reviewed by Iain Clacher Last Stop Heavenly Heights is a striking debut CD for Sydney band Karma County, a strange bar-band which seems to inhabit its very own original space in
Southern Journey, Vol. 5: Bad Man BalladsVarious artists, recorded by Alan LomaxRounder Records through Festival Review by Norm Dixon Bad Man Ballads: Songs of Outlaws and Desperadoes is just one of a monumental series of recordings of folk
Outback thriller Kiss or KillDirected by Bill BennettWith Frances O'Connor, Matt Day, Chris Haywood, Barry OttoSydney Film Festival Review by Brendan Doyle Slick as an inner-city haircut, this thriller road movie has a plot with as many
JerusalemBy Michael GurrDirected by Bruce Myles The Wharf Theatre, Sydney Review by Brendan Doyle Jerusalem is a fine play. Unlike a lot of recent Australian theatre, which doesn't stray much beyond middle-class angst at the beach house,
Promiscuities: A Secret History of Female DesireBy Naomi WolfRandom House, 1997. 272 pp., $22.95 Review by Kath Gelber With its sexualised cover (a picture of a naked, female, headless, almost hairless, skinny torso) and its sexualised title,


Getting real about jobs @box text intro = The federal government's decision to delay the gradual reduction of tariffs on cars was welcomed by the car companies with the claim that this would preserve jobs in the industry. But whether jobs will