Issue 306

News

By Shannon Buckley and Angela Luvera PERTH — On February 10, Dr Victor Chan and his anaesthetist, Dr Hoh Peng Lee, were charged for performing an abortion nearly two years ago. This is the first time in 30 years that such charges have been laid
Sydney action to defend abortion rights An emergency meeting of abortion rights campaigners in Sydney on February 14 decided to organise an action to protest against the charges laid in WA. The action will be held on Friday, February 20, at 5.30pm.
Jobs not woodchips! HOBART — On February 11, environment activists followed log trucks through Hobart with signs saying "Jobs not Woodchips" and "600 years to grow; 3 minutes to chip". The action highlighted the increased woodchipping allowed by
By Tom Flanagan DARWIN — The traditional owners of the site of the proposed Jabiluka uranium mine are calling on people to join the blockade to stop construction of the mine. A statement says: "Mirrar people have fought to protect the country and
The announcement was made on February 10: Premier Magazines is the result of a $100-million joint publishing venture by Australian Consolidated Press (ACP) and Time Inc. and will change our newsstands forever. Or will it? The launch of Premier
Youth forum unites candidates By Will Williams and Amanda Lawrence CANBERRA — On February 13, Resistance organised a discussion between young people and youth candidates standing in the February 21 ACT elections. The Democratic Socialists' Nick
By Sue Bull CANBERRA — Throughout the ACT election campaign, the local Liberals have been trying to distance themselves from the Howard government. They've promised not to sack any more ACT employees and to use the $5 million of unspent
Anti-war activists around the country have quickly mobilised to oppose another US-led war against Iraq. Anti-war coalitions have been formed in many cities, and pickets and protests have been organised. In Melbourne, reports Ben Reid, 300 people
By Ray Fulcher MELBOURNE — La Trobe University's student newspaper, Rabelais, is threatened with closure by the right-wing coalition which controls the Student Representative Council. Last week, right-wing students from the Liberal Club, Labor
SYDNEY — Barbara Wright, president of the NSW Medical Consumers Association and a retired nurse, is picketing Liverpool Hospital every weekday from 8.30 to 9.30am. Wright is suffering serious spinal problems and needs urgent surgery. Her bowel,
By Russell Pickering CANBERRA — The Democratic Socialists are the only progressive party contesting the ACT election who will be recommending where their supporters direct their preferences. Sue Bull, Democratic Socialist candidate for Molonglo,
By Mary Day WOLLONGONG — Residents of Wollongong are gearing up for another development fight, this time against the "spot" rezoning of a residential area to permit a 12-storey hotel/serviced apartment complex on the Cliff Road foreshore. Several
By Chris Slee and Stan Thompson Managers in the Individual Non-Business Taxes (INB) section of the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) have announced that they will not go ahead with plans for compulsory redundancies. The plans have been hanging over
Democratic Socialists: time to put the unions on a war footing "Corporate Australia sniffs a decisive victory at Webb Dock", Dick Nichols, the Democratic Socialist Party's industrial convenor said last weekend. "That's why the union movement has to
By John McGill Employees of Australia Post (AP) have been bombarded with management deregulation propaganda since mid-1997. Information bulletins have been preparing staff for a management sell-out. All bulletins emphasise that privatisation is not
IWD forums debate feminist issues In preparation for International Women's Day, forums on issues confronting women have been held in Perth and Adelaide. In Perth, Shannon Buckley writes, approximately 30 women and men participated in a one-day
By Nikki Ulasowski CANBERRA — On February 4, the first student-initiated native title group was formed at the Australian National University. The meeting was attended by activists from Resistance, Australians for Native Title and Reconciliation,
CFMEU wins WorkCover top-up deal By Michael Bull MELBOURNE — The Master Builders Association (MBA) last week agreed to union demands for workers' compensation top-up insurance to cover the state government cuts to WorkCover. Construction
'I can't turn away' By Bill Mason On February 11, Brisbane activists heard MUA Southern Queensland branch organiser Jeff Langdon speak at the Resistance Centre on the union's strategy in its dispute with the National Farmers Federation. The
Maritime Union of Australia stop-work meetings held around Australia last week to update members on the Webb Dock dispute showed that wharfies and seafarers are angry, determined to win and not alone. The meetings all voted for a $50 levy on members
Fee boycott at SCU By Bernard Wunsch LISMORE — The administration of Southern Cross University has imposed an up-front fee of $18 on all students enrolling this year. In response, the Students Representative Council is organising a boycott. SRC

World

By Eva Cheng In an affirmation of grassroots democracy, a majority of member unions of the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions (KCTU) on February 9-10 voted down an agreement which their leadership had tentatively entered into with the bosses and
According to figures released by the National Institute of Space Surveys on January 26, deforestation in the Amazonian region has increased alarmingly in recent years. Around 2,905,900 hectares of forest were cut down in 1994-95, double the annual
By Francesca Davis Discrimination, marginalisation and persecution of former citizens of the German Democratic Republic (GDR) in unified Germany have reached alarming proportions, according to a declaration signed by representatives of all
East Timorese seek asylum in embassies By Jon Land Six East Timorese youths entered the Spanish embassy in Jakarta on February 11, requesting asylum and travel to Portugal. They are the third group of East Timorese to seek asylum in foreign
By Renfrey Clarke MOSCOW — Part of the Russian "soul", western tradition holds, is a unique bent for passive suffering. Centuries of peasant revolts, not to speak of other convulsions, give the lie to this myth. Nevertheless, it still gets
By Manal Diab WEST BANK — Twice in the last three months, my room-mates and I, Palestinian women living in our native land, were attacked by our Jewish neighbours. Palestinians continue to be treated as unwanted foreigners in their own land. Last
[Printed here are excerpts from three articles in Socialist Appeal analysing the British Labour government's social policies.] 'Welfare to work'? The Labour government intends to introduce workfare for the long-term unemployed. Workfare is an
Philippines left confronts the economic crisis MANILA — FRANCISCO NEMENZO, a founding member of BISIG (Union for Socialist Ideas and Action) and the newly-established AKBAYAN! (Citizens' Action Party) spoke to Green Left Weekly's REIHANA MOHIDEEN
World trade union network against Rio Tinto launched World trade union network against Rio Tinto launched By Norm Dixon Trade unions with members in the Rio Tinto corporation have launched a worldwide network to defend workers' pay and
US firms up weapons markets in Asia By Jon Land United States defence secretary William Cohen conducted a 12-day tour of Asia in January, ostensibly to convey his government's commitment to stability and security in the region. A less openly

Culture

Robo-shlock: the bad '80s teen movie goes sci-fi Starship TroopersDirected by Paul VerhoevanNow screening in major cinemas. By Conrad Barrett It's the future and sexism and racism have been eliminated; there's world peace and everyone has an
Treading Our Own Paths: A book of writings by people from the Canberra region who have experienced psychiatric illnessEdited by Robin DavidsonFootsteps Press, 1997.92 pp., $10 (includes postage)ACT Writers Centre, PO Box 23, Griffith, ACT 2603Also
Bindi-eye Bop — Songs for children aged 0 to 90By Margaret Bradford1997, $15 (plus $2 postage)Write to 12 Naranga Ave, Engadine NSW 2233or phone/fax (02) 9520 6180 Review by Alex Bainbridge For parents of young children, finding suitable
Snake CradleBy Roberta SykesAllen and Unwin, 1997. 330 pp. Review by Maureen Sexton Snake Cradle is the first volume of Roberta Sykes' three-volume autobiography Snake Dreaming. Sykes leads us through the story of her life until 18 years of age. We
A mixed bag of feminisms Bodyjamming: sexual harassment, feminism and public lifeEdited by Jenna MeadVintage, 1997. 296pp., $19.95 (pb) Review by Carla Gorton Bodyjamming is a collection of essays written in response to Helen Garner's
The Wings of the DoveStarring Helena Bonham Carter and Linus RoacheDirected by Iain SoftlyBased on the novel by Henry JamesOpens February 19 Review by Becky Ellis The Wings of the Dove is set in London in 1910 and follows the complicated story of
My Night With RegBy Kevin ElyotThe Newtown Theatre, SydneyUntil March 14 Review by Mark Stoyich For the first time in human history, we live without fear of imminent death. For 50 years, disease and war have been held (temporarily?) at bay, with

Editorial

Editorial: A new low A new low On February 5 and 6, the High Court heard an appeal by the Ngarrindjeri women of South Australia arguing that the 1997 Hindmarsh Island Bridge Act, passed by federal parliament to enable the privately owned