Issue 416

Australia

Leaflet writer paid $2640 by Centrelink

ADELAIDE — The Social Security Appeals Tribunal has ordered Centrelink to put Norm Barber back on the dole and pay him $2640.

Centrelink had cancelled Barber's Newstart payments on March 30 after accusing him of not looking...

BY IAN JAMIESON

FREMANTLE — A new Resistance Centre has opened its doors in this Western Australian port city.

The office is the culmination of many months of concerted effort by members of the Democratic Socialist Party and Resistance. Although...

Refugee forced into prostitution

BY SIMON BUTLER

A Colombian asylum seeker, who was forced into prostitution in Australia, has been refused a protection visa by the Refugee Review Tribunal. She may now be forcibly returned to her home country, where she...

Supporters mobilise for Tent Embassy

BY SIMON BUTLER

SYDNEY — Following reports that police were about to evict Aboriginal protesters from Victoria Park and close the Aboriginal Tent Embassy there, 150 supporters quickly gathered on August 11....

Marxism on main street

BY ADAM LEEMAN

NEWCASTLE — Resistance and the Democratic Socialist Party have officially opened their new office and bookshop here. Located in Newcastle's main street, at 472 Hunter Street, the building is close to City Hall and Civic...

Greenhouse blues

BY BARRY HEALY

A report released by the Australian Greenhouse Office in July shows that Australia's greenhouse gas emissions jumped by 16.9% in the eight years to 1998. Under the Kyoto Summit commitments, Australia is supposed to limit...

No solution can come from elite, meeting told

BY MATT LIVINGSTON

BRISBANE — The crisis in Indonesia cannot be solved by "shifting deck chairs on the Titanic", the national coordinator of Action in Solidarity with Indonesia and East Timor (ASIET), Max Lane,...

Bondi speak-out on Olympic deceit

BY MELANIE SJOBERG

SYDNEY — Riding the wave of protest against the volleyball stadium on Bondi Beach and against the numerous evictions imposed by profiteering property owners in the area, a lively speak-out was held at...

BY DAMIEN LAWSON

SYDNEY — With no media attention or public discussion, the federal Coalition government is using the Olympics to justify sweeping new powers which allow the military to suppress domestic unrest in Australia.

Under the pretext of...

ALP waters down native title policy

BY SIMON BUTLER

At its national conference in Hobart, the Australian Labor Party quietly discarded its commitment to the right of native titleholders to negotiate at the exploration stage of mineral projects and at the...

BY SIMON BUTLER

SYDNEY — Thirty students from the University of Technology, Sydney were arrested and charged on August 9 after occupying the acting vice-chancellor's office. They were protesting University Council's rejection of official UTS participation in the...

World

Over the last week, Indonesian students have been demonstrating almost
daily in front of the central Jakarta home of the former Indonesian dictator
Suharto. They are calling for Suharto — who was formally charged with
embezzling state funds on August 3 — to be tried...

Fiji: Why Canberra is soft on military rule

The Australian government's expressions of delight and relief at the Fiji military's arrest of coup leader George Speight and hundreds of his supporters on July 26-27 signalled to the military brass that Canberra was ready to accept a...

Colombia: US aid package for murderous military

US President Bill Clinton on July 13 signed into law a massive aid package for the Colombian government. Approximately 80% of the US$1.3 billion has been allocated to Colombia's security forces in the form of equipment and training...

AUSTRIA: Peak union plays dead

Austrian peak union plays dead

GRAZ, Austria — At a recent government-organised summit, it was proclaimed that the European Union target of a zero budget deficit could be reached only through joint national initiatives by political...

RACE AND CLASS IN THE UNITED STATES: Ralph Nader: 'Freedom is participation in power'

SAN FRANCISCO — "Freedom is participation in power", Ralph Nader, US Green Party candidate for president, told delegates to the July national convention of the National Association for the...

PACIFIC: US military a 'toxic criminal'

SAIPAN, CNMI — Greenpeace has declared the United States government a toxic criminal for using the Pacific as a dumping ground for its poisons.

Greenpeace and Tanapag villagers have re-fenced and signposted piles of...

CUBA: Che photographer to sue

BY SEAN HEALY

The man who took the photograph which turned Ernesto "Che" Guevara into an icon is planning to sue Smirnoff for demeaning the revolutionary's memory by using the photo to advertise its new, "spicy" vodka brand....

UNITED STATES: Anti-corporate activists go cross-country

Fresh from protests against the Republican convention in Philadelphia, a coalition of pro-democracy groups set out cross-country on August 8 to share their message with unions and the rest of the US public.

...

Pro-Jakarta militia operating out of refugee camps and other bases in West Timor show no sign of scaling down their attacks upon refugees or United Nations soldiers and humanitarian staff. The increasing number of clashes between the militia and UN patrols is further delaying East...

Shell chief to head renewable energy task force

BY SEAN HEALY

The chairperson of oil giant Royal Dutch Shell has been chosen to co-chair a new global task force on renewable energy.

At its July summit in Okinawa, the G8 (group of eight rich...

On July 21, the armed forces of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), which rules Iraqi Kurdistan with the Kurdistan Democratic Party, under the protection of United States imperialism, forcibly closed the offices of the Independent Women's Organisation (IWO) and its women's shelter in...

UNITED STATES: Greenpeace occupies Arctic-bound barge

BY SEAN HEALY

Greenpeace activists in Alaska have occupied a massive barge carrying equipment bound for oil giant BP's Northstar development, a controversial artificial drilling island currently under...

INDONESIA: Dita Sari: new labour regulations inadequate

On July 10, a new labour rights bill was unanimously passed by the Indonesian House of Representatives. It still requires President Abdurrahman Wahid's approval to become law. The Indonesian National Front for Labour Struggle...

CISLAC campaigns against US aid

As US interference in Colombia has increased, now including a massive aid package to the Colombian military, Committees In Solidarity with Latin America and the Caribbean (CISLAC) made the decision at its June national consultation to step up its work in...

UNITED STATES: 'The poor will not be disappeared'

PHILADELPHIA — While the smug elite of the US Republican Party gathered here in plush hotels and a huge new convention centre to celebrate their wealth and to anoint two rich white men to lead their presidential ticket, the US poor...

Earlier this summer, a comprehensive school student from the north-east was refused a place at Oxford University, despite having exceptionally high examination grades. The Labour Party, in a populist outburst which even by their standards of cynicism and hypocrisy could only be described...

PAKISTAN: 'No more Hiroshimas'

LAHORE — A seminar on the theme "No More Hiroshimas" was organised jointly by Lahore Peace Forum and Joint Action Committee for Peoples Rights on August 6 at Lahore Press Club. Despite severe rain, more than 200 people turned up to hear well-known...

Kim appoints investigation panel

SEOUL — South Korea's President Kim Dae-Jung appointed a human rights investigation panel to investigate repression of the pro-democracy movement by previous military dictatorships and decide on compensation.

Incidents for...

ITALY: Appeals to release Chilean dissident

BY SEAN HEALY

Chilean leftists and indigenous activists have called for international help to force the Italian government to free Jaime Yovanovic, who is being held awaiting extradition back to his native country...

Hypocrisy, Republican style

SAN FRANCISCO — The four-day Republican Party convention finally came to an end on August 4 with the formal nomination of Texas Governor George W. ("Dubya") Bush, as the party's presidential candidate in November. Since the selection process had been...

After months of delays, false starts and a performance to rival Christopher Skase's "Now I'm sick, now I'm not", former president Suharto is finally to stand trial for embezzlement of Indonesian state funds.

On August 3, the 79-year-old Suharto was formally charged with...

Editorial

The law is an ass

The Howard government will gain only limited comfort from the August 11 ruling in Darwin Federal Court by Justice Maurice O'Loughlin.

In dismissing the suit of Lorna Cubillo and Peter Gunner, two representatives of the Aboriginal stolen generations, the judge...

General

S11 activists targets Mcdonald's

ADELAIDE — Thirty people demonstrated outside McDonald's in the Rundle Mall here on August 4 to protest against the multinational's attacks on the environment, underdeveloped nations and workers' rights. The action, organised by...

S11 Alliance calls for trade union support

BY JORGE JORQUERA

MELBOURNE — The S11 Alliance has issued a call for trade unionists to support the non-violent three-day blockade of the World Economic Forum's summit at the Crown Casino beginning September 11....

Rod Quantock to host McDebate

BY JORGE JORQUERA

MELBOURNE — Some of the world's best minds and sharpest wits will grapple with the crucial issue of our time here on August 25, when they debate "Whether McDonald's should run the World Bank".

...

BY DICK NICHOLS

Every time the death knell tolls for some factory or industry in the old industrial towns of the advanced industrial world, the workers involved are torn between three basically irreconcilable reactions. The first is to fight for what they've got,...

S11: high school activists debate tactics

BY JODY BETZIEN

MELBOURNE — Beginning September 11, this city will experience a myriad of anti-World Economic Forum (WEF) actions. There is a lot of discussion and debate about how to coordinate and organise these...

BY PIP HINMAN

SYDNEY — Indonesian union leader Romawaty Sinaga, of the the Indonesian National Front for Labour Struggle (FNPBI), and Francisco Pascual, of the Philippine People's Development Resource Centre, are the two international guest speakers at seminars in...

BY GRAHAM MATTHEWS

BRISBANE — "The demonstrations in Seattle have opened a significant crack in the ideological stronghold of the international financial institutions", said Max Lane, addressing a public meeting of more than 100 sponsored by the S11 Alliance here...

Culture

'We were our own censors'

The First Casualty: The War Correspondent as Hero and Myth-Maker from the Crimea to Kosovo
By Phillip Knightly
Prion, 2000
574pp., $35 (pb)

REVIEW BY PHIL SHANNON

...

[This week's Life of Riley column defers to this profile of one of the great puppeteers of our time. Gepeto was among 280 protestors arrested by police outside the US Republican Party convention in Philadelphia last week. — Dave Riley.]

The arrest of Gepeto took many by surprise. The...

Defiant history of workers' theatre movement

Defiance: Political Theatre in Brisbane 1930-1962
By Connie Healy
Boombana Publications
$21.90, 256 pp

REVIEW BY DAVE RILEY

This may seem like an obscure subject....

Progressive TV alive and well in Melbourne

BY AARON JOLLY

MELBOURNE — If the elite corporate current affairs dross is still driving you up the wall, then relax, comrades, for relief is at hand. Melbourne independent community television producers, SKA TV,...