Issue 523

Australia

BY RUTH RATCLIFFE
DARWIN — "We come to work standing, walking and talking, but with the current safety conditions, we could leave work in a pine box", the Electrical Trades Union (ETU) organiser Alan Paton, told Green Left Weekly.
Workers on

BY
JACKIE LYNCH
MELBOURNE — More than 3000 Electrical Trades Union (ETU) members
met at Dallas Brookes Hall on January 22 to endorse a new enterprise bargaining
agreement (EBA).
The EBA, negotiated between the ETU and the main employer

Dispute at stadium
BRISBANE — Completion of the $350 million Lang Park stadium redevelopment in time for the Brisbane vs Newcastle rugby league blockbuster in late May is in doubt because of a looming industrial dispute. Developers involved in

BY KIM BULLIMORE
SYDNEY — The Sydney International Women's Day Collective, which has been meeting since November last year, has voted overwhelmingly to organise an IWD march and rally on March 8 around the theme of "Peace, Justice, Diversity,

BY RAY FULCHER
Centrelink and the Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU) are back in negotiations over a new "development agreement" after a rejection by 72% Centrelink staff of management's attempt to get an unpopular pay and conditions

BY MICHAEL BULL
MELBOURNE — For the second time, unions and the community will rally in support of Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union state secretary Martin Kingham, who is facing contempt charges against the Royal Commission into

BY JODY BETZIEN
MELBOURNE — A showdown between the Victorian Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) and construction giant Grocon has been averted at the final hour.
On January 19, a stop-work meeting of 600 Grocon workers

BY
BILL MASON
BRISBANE — The Queensland Labor government's department of state
development has given formal notice to protesters camped outside the site
of the Narangba nuclear irradiation plant, now under construction, that
they will be

BY BRONWYN JENNINGS
GEELONG — For several years, Victorians from all sorts of backgrounds have made an annual trek to Avalon, near Geelong, to view the acrobatics of dozens of international aircraft. It has become a family weekend for hundreds of

PERTH — More than 2500 people rallied outside the Western Australian
parliament on January 19 to oppose the war on Iraq and the “sea swap” agreement
between the Australian and US governments. The rally was organised by the
Fremantle

BY LINDA WALDRON
MELBOURNE — At lunchtime on January 20, 200 women sat on the steps of Victorian Parliament House wearing bras on the outside of their t-shirts in protest against war on Iraq.
The action was organised by the prominent actor

BY NEIL EVERLEY
SYDNEY — Two hundred anti-war protesters gathered at Cawper Wharf, Woolloomooloo, on January 23, in a stormy protest against Australian involvement in a war on Iraq.
The protesters were responding to a call put out by anti-war

BY
GRAHAM MATTHEWS
MELBOURNE — Recent emergency actions against war in Iraq show the
depth of anger against the Australian government’s decision to back the
impending war against Iraq.
On January 19, more than 150 people joined a hastily

BY JON LAMB
NEWCASTLE — Miners at the United coal mine 16 kilometres west of Singleton and several other pits in the Hunter region are preparing to step-up industrial action to improve wages and conditions.
"At United, the miners accepted a

A new email discussion list has been started to provide a forum for readers of Green Left Weekly to exchange ideas and discuss news items, issues and reviews covered in GLW.
While it will not replace the role of the letters in the Write On section

A new email discussion list has been started to provide a forum for readers of Green Left Weekly to exchange ideas and discuss news items, issues and reviews covered in GLW.

World

BY
EVA CHENG
An international campaign against the Hong Kong government's attempt
to introduce an anti-union and anti-civil rights law in the guise of combating
“sedition” and “subversion” have received strong support from trade unions

BY MAX LANE
JAKARTA — On January 22, more than 300 journalists and other observers crammed into a room in the Struggle Museum to hear representatives of several political and social movement organisations announce the formation of a new

BY PETER BOYLE
Police raided the Kuala Lumpur office of malaysiakini.com, a progressive and independent web site, and seized computers on January 20. Ten hours later, while a protest vigil was being held outside the office, the site was up again,

BY STUART MUNCKTON
"We have burnt our boats. There is no turning back", Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez declared in a national broadcast on January 6. "We will carry on consolidating and deepening the revolution", the radical pro-poor president

BY
FEDERICO FUENTES
BUENOS AIRES — Two separate delegations travelled to the northern
province of Tucuman, one of the poorest provinces in Argentina, in January.
Each represented the deep gulf that divides Argentinian society and politics.

Human rights group Amnesty International has called on the US government to "end the legal black hole into which it has thrown hundreds of detainees in Guantanamo Bay" in Cuba. A statement issued by the Canadian section of AI on January 10 criticised

BY
EVA CHENG
Wang Fanxi died in Leeds, England, on December 30. Born in 1907,
Wang became politically active during the anti-imperialist upsurge in China
in the 1920s and participated in the revolutionary communist movement there
for almost

BY FEDERICO FUENTES
BUENOS AIRES — Even before Lucio "Lucho" Gutierrez was inaugurated as president of Ecuador on January 15, he had made it very clear what he planned to do. "I am determined to change this nation or die trying", said Gutierrez

BY
FEDERICO FUENTES
PORTO ALEGRE — This city is buzzing as more and more people arrive
each day for the third annual gathering of the World Social Forum (WSF),
being held here January 23-28. Once again, tens of thousands of global
justice

BY MICHAEL KARADJIS
Tens of thousands of Turkish Cypriots in recent weeks have laid to rest the question of whether the so-called "Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus" represents their aspirations or is an outside imposition by the military ruling

Editorial

In May 2001, a distressed Marilyn Reidy explained how she found out that HIH had collapsed. Reidy and her husband, who has been totally incapacitated by a brain tumour, were dependent on his HIH insurance cheques to survive; when Reidy tried to cash

Culture

Lord of the Rings: The Two TowersDirected by Peter JacksonWritten by Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens, Stephen Sinclair and Peter JacksonStarring Elijah Wood, Ian McKellen and Viggo Mortensen.
REVIEW BY LAURA DURKAY
The corporate media were quick to

Interesting Times: A Twentieth Century LifeBy Eric HobsbawmAllen Lane, 2002448 pages, $55 (hb)
REVIEW BY PHIL SHANNON
It was almost better than sex, thought Eric Hobsbawm during the massive but last legal march of the German Communist Party (KPD)

REVIEW BY ALEX SALMON
The Quiet AmericanBased on the book by Graham GreeneDirected by Philip NoyceStarring Michael Caine,
Brendan Fraser and Do Thi Hai YenShowing at major cinemas
The Quiet American is a dramatised account of the CIA's role in

BY NICK EVERETT
SYDNEY — A powerful new anti-war documentary is being screened by Socialist Alliance. Not in My Name tells the story of the US-led "war on terrorism" you have not been allowed to see on tellie. It asks, "why is dropping bombs on