Issue 632

Australia

Jim McIlroy, Brisbane "Now's the time — we're in the trenches", Platypus Action Group spokesperson John Woodlands told protesters on June 24. "Enough is enough. It's now or never.... We're not moving until we save this place." Woodlands was
MELBOURNE — Sixty people gathered at Comrades Bar on July 1 to farewell participants in a soldiarity brigade to Venezuela. The even was jointly organised by Green Left Weekly, the Electrical Trades Union (ETU) and the Australia-Venezuela Solidarity
SYDNEY — A new analysis by the Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) of the impact of the federal government's changes to welfare, announced in the May budget, reveals that many people who find part-time work or undertake study after July
SYDNEY — A forum on the politics of war was held at the Newtown Neighbourhood Centre on June 26, organised by the Newtown and Marrickville peace groups. Donna Mulhearn, journalist, aid worker and "human shield" during the Iraq war, and state
Paul Oboohov, Canberra On June 29, 200 people attended a public forum organised by Unions ACT at Old Parliament House to hear a range of speakers on Prime Minister John Howard's planned new anti-union laws. Paul Munro, the retired vice-president

World

On June 29, a heavily armed gunmen on the Brazil-Paraguay border attacked a group of Guarani Indians, hours after the Guarani, part of the Sombrerito community, had moved back onto land they had been forcibly evicted from 30 years ago by a cattle
Doug Lorimer In a result that has stunned most Western and Iranian political commentators, on June 24 Iranian voters decisively rejected business-backed candidate Ayallotah Hashemi Rafsanjani, an advocate of neoliberal "free-market" economic
Eva Cheng The US government is stepping up its attempts to blame China for some of its own economic woes. In a May report to the US Congress, it threatened to officially designate China a "currency manipulating economy" if by October it hadn't
On June 30, after five days without water and 11 without food, Iranian Seyed agreed to end his hunger strike because the local Social Services department agreed to give him emergency housing, money for food, and legal assistance to appeal the
Norm Dixon @into = Two million South African workers went on strike and hundreds of thousands marched in protest at continuing job losses and poverty in a national strike called by the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) on June 27.
Rohan Pearce "In February 2003, weeks before war was declared on Iraq, millions of people protested in the streets of the world. That call went unheeded. No international institution had the courage or conscience to stand up to the aggression of
Waving red hammer-and-sickle flags and banners of Lebanon's Communist Party (LCP), thousands of people marched through Beirut on June 24 behind the hearse carrying the body of assassinated LCP leader George Hawi. Hawi led the LCP during Lebanon's
Bernie Stephens, Harare The slogan "Go back to the rural areas where you come from" sums up President Robert Mugabe and his government's hatred for the workers and urban poor in Zimbabwe. The government boasts that Operation Murambatsvina ("Drive
According to a June 29 Forsa poll, the new Left Party, formed by an alliance between the Party of Democratic Socialism and the Electoral Alternative for Jobs and Social Justice (WASG) could expect 11% of the vote in the September 18 parliamentary
Israelis have reacted with shock and outrage to images broadcast on television on June 29 of a bunch of right-wing extremists trying to stone an unconscious Palestinian teenager to death in the Gaza Strip. The incident started when young men from an
On June 20, the body of Andres Arroyo Segura was found close to the site of the Baba Dam project. Segura had recently received death threats because he headed the bi-province committee of farmers' organisations opposing the dam. Before his overthrow
James Balowski, Jakarta After criticisms that intelligence agencies had failed to prevent a May 28 deadly bomb blast at a crowded market in central Sulawesi, President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has ordered regional governments to revive the Regional
On June 29, Canada's House of Commons passed a bill legalising same-sex marriages. The bill, which included a caveat allowing religious institutions to refuse to marry same-sex couples, passed by a comfortable margin, although one member of the
Kim Bullimore On June 28, the Israeli courts found former soldier Wahid Taysir al Heib guilty of the manslaughter of International Solidarity Movement (ISM) activist, Tom Hurdnall. Hurdnall, a 22-year-old British student, was shot in the head by
In a major blow to civil libertarians and technological development, on June 27, the US Supreme Court ruled that manufacturers of peer-to-peer (P2P) software can be held liable for the copyright infringements of those using their software. The case,
Stuart Munckton On June 1, 20,686 people graduated from Mission Ribas, which gives poor Venezuelans their first chance to pass high school. One of the most obvious aspects of Venezuela's Bolivarian revolution, led by President Hugo Chavez, the
Rohan Pearce The final declaration of the World Tribunal on Iraq, released on June 27 in Istanbul, strongly defended the right of Iraqis to resist the occupation, including by taking up arms against the occupying forces. "There is widespread
On June 29, Mehmet Tarhan, who has refused to serve his compulsory military service, was re-arrested on insubordination charges. Tarhan was asked to apply for a discharge on the grounds that he is an openly gay man, but refuses to endorse such
Alison Dellit In the largest protest in Scotland's history, more than 200,000 people, most wearing white, joined the July 2 Make Poverty History march through Edinburgh, ahead of the July 6-9 G8 summit. "Life doesn't have to be this way",
James Balowski, Jakarta "Based on everything we have obtained, the [National Intelligence] Agency [BIN] is believed to have played a major role in a well-planned conspiracy to murder Munir", Asmara Nababan, the deputy chairperson of the Fact
Alex Miller On June 27, Scottish Socialist Party activists, including parliamentarian Frances Curran, simultaneously occupied the headquarters of the Royal Bank of Scotland in Edinburgh and at a branch in central Glasgow. Both protests lasted 30

Culture

What do youtell us tonight?That part of a ceiling ata wedding receptioncollapsed,leaving bride and groombruised.Meanwhile the worldwidemarch of peopledefied claims the war is over.Perhaps you ignored usbecause you echo those claims,like a friend of
Fascism and Football — Mussolini, Hitler and Franco all understood the massive propaganda potential of football. SBS, Saturday, July 9, 9.30pm. Message Stick: NAIDOC Week Special — Inside the lives of Indigenous Australians, presented from
BY ANDY BLUNDEN Anyone who has participated in organising broad campaigns and protests will know that on many issues people split in two along very similar lines: on the one hand, people coming from the various social movements or young people
InfluenceWritten by David WilliamsonDirected by Bruce MylesStarring John Waters, Octavia Barron-Martin, Zoe Carides and Vanessa DowningMelbourne Theatre CompanyAt the Playbox, Melbourne, until August 30 REVIEW BY VANNESSA HEARMAN Influence is
Dare to be a Daniel: Then and NowBy Tony BennHutchinson, 2004278 pages REVIEW BY ALEX MILLER Tony Benn is rightfully one of the most well-respected figures in the history of the British Labour Party during the second half of the 20th century.
BY BREE MCKILLIGAN For the fourth year running, Australia's only prison radio broadcasts will go to air. Indigenous prisoners in Victoria will be broadcasting live radio from July 4-8 on community radio 3CR during NAIDOC (National Aboriginal and