Issue 535

News

BY SUE BULL GEELONG — As part of a series of regional report-backs about the outcomes of the royal commission into the building industry, union officials arrived in Geelong on April 15. Martin Kingham, state secretary of the Construction,
BY EMMA MURPHY BAXTER — After months of planning, on April 18-20 up to 800 people from across Australia converged on the Baxter detention centre outside Port Augusta, to protest against the mandatory detention of asylum seekers, and show
BY ANTHONY BENBOW PERTH — The WA Government is again bending to the wishes of the law-and-order lobby and the business community, this time at the expense of young people, especially Aboriginal young people. On April 15, Premier Geoff
BY SARAH STEPHEN On April 15, the full bench of the Federal Court found that the government has limited powers to detain asylum seekers, and cannot detain them indefinitely as they await deportation. The court found that, in order to
BY IGGY KIM SYDNEY — More than 100 people attended the launch of ATTAC (Action for a Tobin Tax to Assist the Citizen) Australia on April 9 at the Newtown Neighbourhood Centre. The Tobin Tax is a 1% levy on all international currency transactions
Protesters say 'no' to US submarine BY ANTHONY BENBOW FREMANTLE — On April 19, activists gathered at the entrance to Stirling Naval Base on Garden Island, near Rockingham, to protest the presence of the US submarine Key West. USS Key West was

World

BY ROBERTO JORQUERA At an April 8 press conference in Havana, Cuban foreign minister Felipe Perez Roque presented vouchers, bank receipts and photos demonstrating the truth behind the charges against 75 dissidents found guilty of conspiring with
BY RIK WILSON Even as the administration of US President George Bush was waging war with Iraq in order to "disarm" its regime of as-yet-discovered chemical and biological weapons, Washington continued to implement a US$6 billion-plus expansion of
BY ANSO THOM Conservative estimates by Wilma Meeus and David Sanders at the University of the Western Cape's School of Public Health show that rich Western countries have saved billions by enticing African medical professionals to leave their
BY NORM DIXON & BARRY SHEPPARD Even as the world's corporate media was declaring the end of the “Iraq war”, on April 12 as many as 2 million people mobilised across the globe to oppose the US-led invasion and occupation of Iraq. In
BY JEFF SHANTZ TORONTO — The Canadian state, at all levels, has responded to anti-war demonstrations and direct actions with an escalation of its campaign of harassment and criminalisation of activists. In Toronto, two large anti-war actions
BY EVA CHENG The strains on Washington's close, seven-decade relationship with Saudi Arabia burst into the open last August when the Washington Post revealed that US war secretary Donald Rumsfeld's Defense Policy Board (DPB) on July 10 had
BY DOUG LORIMER While US government officials, from President George Bush down, have publicly denied that the US-led invasion of Iraq has anything to do with seizing control of Iraq's oil vast reserves, the orders given to the invading US troops
William Safire, Robert Bartley, Wall Street Journal, Jerry Falwell, Jay Garner, Balfour Declaration, Christian Zionism, Lord Palmerston, Lord Shaftesbury, British imperialism, Uri Avnery "> UNITED STATES: Architects of empire By URI AVNERY
The United Nations Human Rights Commission (UNHRC) on April 15 condemned Israel for its “mass killing” of Palestinians and its construction of illegal settlements in the occupied territories. The United States government was the only
BY NORM DIXON The parents of a British solidarity activist shot in the head by Israeli occupation forces on April 11 have accused the Israeli government of “deliberate recklessness”. The attack, the third on foreign supporters of the
BY ROHAN PEARCE On April 15, 13 Iraqi civilians were killed and 29 wounded by US troops in the northern city of Mosul. The next day, US troops shot dead a further four Iraqis and wounded 10 others. Both atrocities occurred at anti-US protests
BY DOUG LORIMER After several weeks of accusations from the White House and the Pentagon against the Syrian government of President Bashar al Assad — ominously similar to those used by Washington to justify its invasion of Iraq — on April 17 US
BY NORM DIXON "The allegation ... of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) is an excuse [the US uses] when we have it out for other countries", Jon Wolfsthal, deputy director of the Non-Proliferation Project at the Carnegie Endowment for International
BY PATRICK BOND The rift between the ruling African National Congress (ANC) and the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) over privatisation has deepened substantially since January, when Pretoria launched the full sale of the
BY NEIL SAMMONDS The world's most efficient “secret” manufacturer of weapons of mass destruction was not Iraq, nor is it Syria — it is Washington's closest ally and partner in the Middle East, Israel. In September 1986, Mordechai Vanunu, a

Culture

REVIEW BY BRIAN JONES The PianistDirected by Roman PolanskiWritten by Ronald Harwood and Wladyslaw SzpilmanWith Adrien Brody and Thomas Kretschmann In 1939, Wladyslaw Szpilman played the last live music heard on Polish radio before the Nazi
REVIEW BY SARAH STEPHEN No Blood for Oil: Australian Voices for Peace Various artists Order a copy of listen to sample tracks at <http://www.indie-cds.com> No Blood for Oil brings together a varied and interesting collection of
HairDirected by David AtkinsLyrics by Gerome Ragni and James RadoMusic by Galt MacDermotWith Matt Hetherington, Kane Alexander, Mitchell Butal and Kelly AbbeyCapitol Theatre, Sydney, until May 8Her Majesty's Theatre, Melbourne, from May 20. REVIEW

Editorial

There have been many theories floated in Australia's newspapers as to why federal Labor leader Simon Crean is doing so badly in the polls. Two polls in as many days indicated most Labor supporters prefer former PM Kim Beazley to lead the party. The