Issue 552

News

BY JORGE JORQUERA Beginning in Perth on September 4, Venezuelan student activist Alvaro Guzman will start a speaking tour of Australia. Guzman is the national director of the Bolivarian Student Front. He will address public meetings in all capital
BY KRIS KOCSIS MELBOURNE — As the Electrical Trades Union (ETU) strike and picket at Smorgon Steel passes the six-month mark, the union faces another challenge as the company attempts to further divide unions on the job. Twenty-five
BY LUKE WEYLAND SYDNEY — The Socialist Alliance has established its newest branch in Auburn, covering the Western Sydney area from Granville to Strathfield to Yagoona. It has 13 members and a healthy number of supporters and contacts. The area
BY ALEX MILNE MELBOURNE — Four-hundred people rallied at Parliament House on August 27 to demand that the Strzelecki forests be protected. Protesters called for the creation of a Strzelecki Ranges National Park. Greens senator Bob Brown addressed
BY KERRYN WILLIAMS CANBERRA — According to an unnamed senior federal education department officer quoted in the August 11 Sydney Morning Herald, the government censored the National Report on Australia's Higher Education Sector (2001), because it
BY SARAH STEPHEN The concept of "temporary" protection was first introduced into Australia with the passing of legislation on October 20, 1999. Since then, 8400 people, 88% of those who have arrived in Australia by boat since July 1999, have been
BY RENFREY CLARKE ADELAIDE — A public meeting was held by the Socialist Alliance here on August 27 at the Semaphore Workers Club. Billed as "a discussion on red and green politics and activism", the meeting attracted 25 people, many of them
BY RENFREY CLARKE ADELAIDE — On the morning of August 28, bus drivers were preparing for an all-out fight with the city's privatised bus companies. After years of putting up with low wages and deteriorating conditions, the drivers had voted
Recharge team makes gains in CEPU election PERTH — Candidates for the Recharge team have won all major positions other than state secretary in the Western Australian Communications, Electrical and Plumbing Union election. Incumbent state
BY ALEX MILNE Environment groups have welcomed mining company Energy Resources of Australia's commencement of rehabilitation work at the Jabiluka uranium mine, an enclave within the Kakadu National Park in the Northern Territory. "This is a huge
BY KYLIE MOON In some of the largest university student demonstrations in five years, thousands of students rallied across the country on August 27 as part of a national day of action against the government's attempts to accelerate privatisation of
BY NICK EVERETT SYDNEY — Twenty-two anti-war activists met at the Gaelic Club on August 25 to found the Stop the War Coalition. Participants represented the Chippendale-Darlington, Newtown and Marrickville peace groups, as well as the NSW Greens,
BY JAMES CAULFIELD Rallies were held in several Australian cities and towns on August 29, the second anniversary of the federal government's armed seizure of a Norwegian cargo ship, the MV Tampa, to prevent rescued asylum seekers disembarking on
BY SUE BOLTON MELBOURNE — Postal workers took their anger at the bullying tactics of Australia Post to the streets on August 24. It was a warning to AP that postal workers were ready to fight to reverse a policy that disallows workers in AP shops
BY TIM GOODEN GEELONG — More than 2000 unionists rallied on August 27 to demand an end to the 15-week lock-out of Geelong Wool Combing employees. In a colourful lunchtime rally, building workers rubbed shoulders with public servants, teachers,

World

BY CHRISTANO KERRILA When Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez began his six-year second term in 2000, his party only controlled the executive and the parliamentary arms of government. The Venezuelan oligarchy continues to control some regional and
BY BARRY SHEPPARD SAN FRANCISCO — The recall election of Governor Gray Davis in California continues to generate more interest than recent elections. People throughout the state are registering to vote in record numbers. There is a sense of
Supporters of imprisoned black revolutionary and journalist Mumia Abu Jamal are very concerned about his health. They report that he is suffering from swollen feet that could be the result of blood clots, a potentially serious condition. He wants to
BY JEFF SHANTZ TORONTO — On August 14, I was stranded on a virtually immobilised transit system as the largest blackout in North American history struck. The power outage affected almost 50 million people across the north-eastern United States,
The following statement was issued by the International Act Now to Stop war and End Racism (ANSWER) coalition. It has been slightly abridged. There are times when a progressive demonstration, even a large activity, is little more than a symbolic
BY ROHAN PEARCE The "terrorist problem" in Iraq, General John Abizaid told journalists on August 21, "is emerging as the number-one security threat" to the US-led occupation. Abizaid, the head of US Central Command, is responsible for overseeing
BY URI AVNERY It was a putsch. It was carried out by Israel's Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, his ministers and the army top brass. It is no secret that the military party (the only really functioning party in Israel) objected to the hudna [the
BY ROBYN MARSHALL CARACAS — Dr Carolus Wimmer is in no doubt that a revolutionary process is underway in Venezuela. "Really it's a process of social and economic transformation, which I defend as, definitely, a revolutionary process", he told
Scottish Socialist Party MP Tommy Sheridan on August 25 chose to go to jail rather than pay a fine imposed on him after his arrest at an anti-nuclear demonstration at the Faslane Naval Base on February 11, 2002. Nuclear-armed British submarines
BY VANNESSA HEARMAN MELBOURNE — Zito da Costa, president of the East Timor Confederation of Trade Unions (Konfederasaun Sindikatu Timor Leste — KSTL), one of several trade union groupings in East Timor, addressed a small gathering at Trades
BY PIP HINMAN The Malaysian government is determined to deport Acehnese refugees who have attempted to apply for refugee status with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) office in Kuala Lumpur. The Indonesian coordinating
BY JAMES BALOWSKI JAKARTA — Taking a leaf out of US President George Bush's cynical manipulation of the 9/11 terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, the Indonesian military (TNI) is trying to take advantage of public fear and anger over
BY HYOSU KANG SEOUL — On August 27, police served a search and seizure warrant on the headquarters of the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions to arrest 16 KCTU leaders. A large detachment of police surrounded the office, where 200 unionists had
The following announcement, headed "Towards a united demonstration on October 25", was posted to several email lists operated by United For Peace and Justice on August 28. UFPJ is the broadest of the anti-war coalitions in the United States. It will

Culture

Actively Radical TV — Sydney community television's progressive current affairs producers tackle the hard issues from the activist's point of view. Includes the Green Left news. CTS Sydney (UHF 31), every Sunday, 9pm. Phone (02) 9564 1277. Visit
SYDNEY — An important exhibition of paintings which explore the nature of war, the demonisation of "enemies" and the concept of "collateral damage" employed by imperialist spin doctors. The exhibition, at the Harrington Street Gallery, 17
Weapons of Mass Deception: The Uses of Propaganda in Bush's War on IraqBy Sheldon Rampton and John Stauber Hodder, 2003248 pages $19.95 (pb) REVIEW BY PHIL SHANNON "Why does the world hate us?", was the bemused lament by officials after the
BY BUSTER SOUTHERLEY Our cinema screens are monopolised by Hollywood spectaculars made with budgets equivalent to the annual GDPs of small Third World countries. Yet there are still films being made that concern themselves with themes other than
REVIEW BY ROHAN PEARCE The Trial of Henry KissingerSBSSunday, September 7, 8.30pm. When US President George Bush appointed Henry Kissinger to chair the committee of inquiry into the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the resulting outcry forced Kissinger to
BY DON MONKERUD The Bush administration has admitted that it has found the chemical weapons it went to war in Iraq over. Unfortunately, those weapons reside in Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Oregon and Utah. "I don't

Editorial

The August 25 Australian reported that Prime Minister John Howard's government was resisting informal pressure from Washington to commit more troops to combat the growing guerrilla war being mounted by armed Iraqis resisting the US-led occupation of