Issue 506


BY SUE BULL MELBOURNE — The corporate media may have imposed a total blackout on the picket imposed by members of the Victorian branch of the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union (AMWU) against the union's national officials, but thousands of
BY KERRYN WILLIAMS CANBERRA — On August 11 the Canberra Times printed dramatically incorrect results from a Telepoll on attitudes to refugees. The report claimed that 18% of respondents voted yes and 71% no to the question, "Should children be
BY NICK EVERETT SYDNEY — A "No War on Iraq" coalition was founded at a meeting on August 22 attended by representatives of the Greens, the Socialist Alliance, the Worker Communist Party of Iraq, as well as the National Union of Students, Labor
BY LUISA ARA & MARCUS FELSMAN SYDNEY — In a clear indication that students are beginning to organise against further privatisation of higher education, 500 students marched through Sydney's streets in protest against the higher education review
BY ROB GRAHAM ADELAIDE — Prime Minister John Howard received a less than friendly welcome when he came to the city on August 23. Hundreds took the opportunity to condemn his government's policies at two separate events. Howard was first
BY AMY MCDONELL SYDNEY — Less than a week after trade minister Mark Vaile announced that 25 delegates from around the world will be attending a World Trade Organisation (WTO) ministerial meeting in Sydney on November 14 and 15, activists have
BY PETER ROBSON NEWCASTLE — "Today, I want to tell you what it is like to be a refugee in Australia. I want to tell you what it is like to flee war and repression and only find more oppression. I am no longer in a detention centre, but now it
BY SARAH STEPHEN The Murdoch family's Australian newspaper and the Fairfax's Melbourne Age have spent a number of weeks helping the government in its campaign to destroy the credibility of the Baktiyaris, a Hazara family who are seeking asylum in
BY ALISON DELLIT SYDNEY — In another example of rampant racism in Sydney's west, female students at Noor Al Houda Islamic College have had a booking cancelled by the Auburn Swim Centre, after a racist campaign by local talk-back radio hosts to
Students protest against Nelson PERTH — Around 100 students rallied outside a meeting to discuss federal minister for education Brendan Nelson's proposed changes to higher education. The meeting on August 20 was billed as a "public
BY SUE BOLTON SYDNEY — Delegates from the NSW printing division of the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union met on August 22 to discuss the sacking of national industrial officer for the printing division, Denis Matson, by AMWU national
BY DANNY FAIRFAX SYDNEY — “The US has a Christian fundamentalist government in power… George Bush's fundamentalist plutocracy is the main danger to us. Terrorists aren't the danger, asylum seekers aren't the danger. They are the danger.”
BY KATIE NEVILLE & ADAM BOTTOMLEY MELBOURNE — Sydney Afghan temporary protection visa holder Riz Wakil spoke to an audience of 120 people at an August 14 campus meeting organised by the La Trobe University Refugee Action Collective.


BY DALE T. MCKINLEY JOHANNESBURG — Until recently, not many people were aware of the community of Thembalihle (literal translation — "place of hope"). Situated south of Soweto, Thembalihle had its beginnings when workers moved there to be
BY JEFF HALPER BEER SHEVA — For the past six years, the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD) has been working on the issue of house demolitions. Every time we think: "OK, we've exhausted the subject, let's go on to other, perhaps
BY WALDEN BELLO The unravelling of the reputations of firms that were once the toast of Wall Street continues and the end is not in sight. But one thing is certain: already fragile prior to Enron, the legitimacy of global capitalism as the dominant
CARACAS, August 18 — Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez today initiated a protest caravan against an August 14 Supreme Court ruling that absolved four senior army officers charged with having participated in the April coup d'etat against him. To
JOHANNESBURG — On August 17, about 100 members of the Soldiers Forum (SF), an affiliate of the Anti-Privatisation Forum (APF), were arrested and thrown into jail, where they still remain, for no other reason than the fact that they wanted to
BY ALFREDO CASTRO BOGOTA — Although it has gone unreported in the mainstream media, paramilitary death squads working with the Colombian security forces have continued assassinating hundreds of civilians in recent weeks. Among the dead
BY ALAN MAASS CHICAGO — The Bush administration has been parading handcuffed felons from WorldCom, ImClone and Adelphia in front of the TV cameras. But it's getting harder by the day to sell the story that the collapse of corporate giants like
BY LEE SUSTAR US treasury secretary Paul O'Neill caused a stir — and a financial panic — when he declared that any money loaned to Brazil by the International Monetary Fund would end up in "Swiss bank accounts". He should have looked a
BY KIM BULLIMORE Despite claims by the Western media that women are now “free” in Afghanistan, women and organisations that support women's rights are still being targeted by the Northern Alliance-dominated, US-backed government in Kabul.
BY RAJ PATEL The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) recently chartered a ship — the Liberty Star — to deliver 36,000 tonnes of grain to an estimated 13 million starving people in southern Africa. The Malawian
Report on labour repression in China US-based Human Rights Watch has released a new report detailing the growing repression of worker protests in China. The report details struggles that occurred between March and May in three cities in
GLASGOW — Three-hundred ancillary workers at Glasgow's biggest hospital, the Royal Infirmary, on August 16 celebrated a sweeping victory over Sodexho, one of the most powerful multinational corporations in Europe. The company has been
BY ALFREDO CASTRO BOGOTA — US under-secretary of state for political affairs Marc Grossman led a delegation of senior US political and military leaders to Colombia to hold talks with the government of newly elected President Ivaro Uribe
BY EVA CHENG Although the World Trade Organisation (WTO) was formed in 1995, its predecessor — the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade — came into existence in 1948. GATT was part of a three-pronged mechanism created by the United States


No Toxic Dump By Paul Strangio Pluto Press Australia, 2001 $24.95 (pb) REVIEWED BY BEN COURTICE Paul Strangio introduces No Toxic Dump by comparing the two buzzwords “globalisation” and “community”. While “the revival of community
Love is Mighty CloseVika and LindaBullbar records REVIEW BY MOLLY WISHART Vika and Linda Bull's latest album, Love is Mighty Close, arguably lacks the joie de vivre of earlier recordings, but the songster siblings nevertheless evoke an
Factories of Death: Japanese Biological Warfare, 1932-1945, and the American Cover-upBy Sheldon H. HarrisRoutledge, 2002385 pages, $57 (pb) REVIEW BY PHIL SHANNON In the last days of World War II, as the Japanese retreated from the Soviet


On November 14-15, Sydney will host a meeting of World Trade Organisation (WTO) trade ministers from some 25 countries to discuss the Doha round of multilateral trade negotiations. The meeting will evaluate the progress that has been made since