Issue 434

News

BY JIM GREEN Three-hundred and sixty irradiated fuel rods were secretly shipped out of the nuclear reactor plant in the southern Sydney suburb of Lucas Heights on January 22. The irradiated (or "spent") fuel rods — vastly more radioactive than
BY ALISTAIR DICKINSON SYDNEY — A regional environment plan (REP) has been approved by the NSW Labor government that allows large-scale urban development on the 1535-hectare former Australian Defence Industries (ADI) factory site at St Marys, in
BY JIM McILROY BRISBANE — The Democratic Socialists have announced they will be running two candidates in the February 17 Queensland state elections, on a platform of "End corruption — Support socialism". The two Democratic Socialist
BY TONY ILTIS& JUSTINE KAMPRAD MELBOURNE — Fourteen maintenance workers have set up a picket line outside the luxury Grand Hyatt Hotel after management locked them out on January 19. The lockout followed seven months of negotiations for an
BY EWAN SAUNDERS BRISBANE — On January 25, two Green Left Weekly distributors staffing a campaign stall in the Queen Street Mall were accosted by police and a Brisbane City Council employee and threatened with arrest if they did not move on. The
BY BRONWEN BEECHEY ADELAIDE — More than 80 people attended a speakout and candlelight vigil to mark Invasion Day on January 26. The meeting was held outside Government House, on what has become known to Aboriginal activists as Genocide Corner,
BY PETER BOYLE The Democratic Socialist Party has written to other left parties and prominent left activists to initiate discussions around fielding common "Socialist Alliance" candidates in the coming federal elections. The DSP is seeking
BY JACKIE LYNCH MELBOURNE — Chanting "Shame, Nike, shame!", Fairwear activists staged a lively demonstration at the Australian Open tennis tournament on January 23. The sportswear giant Nike sponsors the event and has reportedly signed Australian
BY ANDREW HALL CANBERRA — On January 24, the Australian Refugee Alliance and Amnesty International organised a protest of 80 people outraged at the treatment suffered of Bariya Ibrahim Magazu at the hands of the Nigerian government. The
Adelaide IWD on the move ADELAIDE — The International Women's Day collective took to the streets here with a campaigning stall on January 27 to publicise the theme and demands for this year's rally. "This year's theme 'Women fighting for global
MELBOURNE — Around 60 students and staff joined a speak-out at enrollment hall organised by Melbourne University Student Union and the National Tertiary Education Industry Union (NTEU). It highlighted for the thousands of first-year students
 The first full bench hearing of the Yallourn power workers' arbitration case begins in Melbourne on February 5 at 11.30am. The workers are asking for as many people as possible to come and fill the arbitration court. We must keep the
BY GRANT COLEMAN PERTH — The campaign to save Western Australia's old-growth forests has become a major issue in the February 10 state election campaign. On January 23, the ALP released its "controversial" policy which pledges to stop old-growth
MELBOURNE — The queer community hit the streets of St Kilda for the Midsumma festival's annual Pride march, which was given a militant, political colouring by a large, noisy contingent of anti-capitalist activists. Melbourne's Pride march, which
BY ANTHONY BENBOW PERTH — On January 23, ACTU secretary Greg Combet addressed 300 BHP workers at a mass meeting in Port Hedland. Combet told the workers that the ACTU was appealing the January 10 Federal Court ruling against unions in their
BY JIM GREEN The federal government announced on January 24 its preferred sites in South Australia for a controversial national dump for about 10,000 cubic metres of low-level radioactive waste — much to the disgust of environmental groups and
BY ROBERTO JORQUERA PERTH — The Deaths in Custody Watch Committee launched its prisoner rights campaign at a public meeting attended by 100 people here on January 24. "The time is long overdue for a broad-ranging and concerted community
BY ALISON DELLIT The federal government is seeking to use a two-day protest by over 160 asylum seekers held in the Port Hedland Immigration Detention Centre to justify an escalation of attacks on the human rights of refugees. According to the
BY CHRIS SPINDLER MELBOURNE — Three hundred thousand casual workers in the manufacturing industry have won a boost to their conditions, following a successful legal claim by the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union (AMWU) for improvements in
BY BEN COLLINS MELBOURNE — Protesters staged a sit-in on the roof of the Maribyrnong detention centre here on January 24 to protest the appalling conditions in the centre and the policy of detaining asylum seekers. Seven protesters climbed onto
[The following is a slightly abridged version of a letter addressed to "all left parties and individuals" posted on the internet on January 25. It was signed by John Percy, national secretary of the Democratic Socialist Party, and Peter Boyle, the
BY SIMON BUTLER BRISBANE — Angry at the expulsion of two gay men from Southbank parklands for kissing in public, 100 protesters gathered at the park on January 14 for a public "kiss off" denouncing the idea that such public displays of affection

World

BY MAX LANE In an end of year "state of the nation" report, the central leadership council of the Peoples Democratic Party (PRD) described economic developments during 2000 under the government of President Abdurrahman Wahid and Vice-President
BY EVA CHENG At the April Summit of the Americas meeting of government leaders, to be held in Quebec City, Canada, the United States will seek endorsement for the extension of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) to the rest of the
BY SEAN HEALY Undeterred by an unprecedented crackdown by Swiss police, several thousand anti-capitalist demonstrators have descended on the up-market ski resort town of Davos to protest the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF) of top
BY SEAN HEALY For the second time in 15 years, the Philippines people have risen as one to overthrow a corrupt leader. In 1986, millions gathered on EDSA, Manila's main avenue, to demand the resignation of dictator Ferdinand Marcos; on January 20
BY MAX LANE On January 23, Budiman Sujatmiko, chairperson of the People's Democratic Party (PRD) led a delegation to meet the leadership of the Nahdatul Ulama (NU), the religious organisation which Abdurrahman Wahid led before his election as
Tamil groups are fearful that the Sri Lankan government will escalate its war in the country's north, following the January 24 expiration of a unilateral ceasefire by the rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. The LTTE, which is fighting for an
WASHINGTON, DC — The Palestine Right to Return Coalition (PRRC) upholds the inalienable right of Palestinian refugees to return home as an integral component of a just and viable peace. No agreement, negotiations or parties which purport to trade

Culture

Eat Flowers & Kiss BabiesCountry Joe McDonald and the Bevis FrondWoronzow Records<http://www.woronzow.com.uk> REVIEW BY BARRY HEALY If you are going to trip down memory lane, you should at least go with someone who knows the meaning of
Mouth to MouthRory McLeodThrough Shock RecordsOrder at <http://www.rorymcleod.com> REVIEW BY JOHN GAUCI "I want my songs to keep memory alive. I suppose I'm trying to tell history from working peoples point of view. Politics to me is
REVIEW BY MARGARET ALLUM Links — International Journal of Socialist Renewal Number 17, January to April 2001New Course Publications, 128pp, $8 <http://www.dsp.org.au/links> There couldn't have been a better time for this issue of
BY TOM FLANAGAN In his review of Clinton Heylin's Bob Dylan biography (GLW #433), Phil Shannon attacks Dylan on the basis that he sold out on his politics. Shannon fails to grasp that Dylan was never a political activist. His music took up

Editorial

Editorial: Close the detention centres! Philip Ruddock, the federal minister for racism, has argued that last week's protests by asylum seekers at the Port Hedland detention facility were caused by a small group of “troublemakers” who were

Resistance!

By Bronwyn Powell All over the world people are taking a stand against the tyranny of big corporations and their governments' international economic institutions. From Seattle to Indonesia, Melbourne to Prague, the IMF, World Bank and
By Marce Cameron and Sarah Peart "The world economic order works for 20% of the population but it leaves out, demeans and degrades the remaining 80%. We simply cannot accept to enter the next century as the backward, poor and exploited rearguard;
Because: * The average women's earnings (including overtime) are around two-thirds what men earn. * Abortion is still part of the Crimes Act in most states of Australia. * Women are still largely judged by how they look, rather than what they
By Jody Betzein In Melbourne last year on September 11, more than 20,000 people mobilised to shut down the World Economic Forum's Asia-Pacific meeting. The meeting's purpose was clear — for the chief executives of the largest 1000 corporations
By Sophie Fischer & Lauren Carroll Harris Women activists played a vital role in the S11 blockade of the World Economic Forum in Melbourne. Many were part of the organising collectives, were speakers, marshals, spokespersons, performing artists,
By Rohan Pearce Behind the facade of a growing "global village" lies the reality of brutal exploitation of the Third World by the corporations and banks of the First World. The mass media tells us that "globalisation" is bringing us together, when