Issue 651

Australia

Jim McIlroy, Brisbane Around 60 members of the Aboriginal community and their supporters held an angry meeting at Jagera House on November 23 to discuss the increasing police harassment of Indigenous people in Musgrave Park and other areas of the
Dave Holmes, Melbourne Green Left Weekly has won the right to resume its Saturday morning stalls at the big Barkly Square shopping centre in the inner-Melbourne suburb of Brunswick. After years of responsible and trouble-free operation, Green
Ruddock — no!' LISMORE — On November 21, federal attorney-general Philip Ruddock was met by 120 protesters when he came to Lismore. The protest was organised by the Lismore Civil Rights Coalition and protesters chanted "Free speech — yes,
Susan Price, Sydney On the night of November 22, following threats of eviction, the University of Newcastle moved to changed the locks on the offices of the National Tertiary Education Union on the campus. The NTEU had previously made attempts at
Paul Oboohov, one of the Members First candidates in the watershed Community and Public Sector Union elections, spent last week campaigning in Canberra. The union elections are being held from November 18 to December 7, and Members First is
SYDNEY — The International Labour Organisation has upheld an ACTU complaint that the Building and Construction Industry Improvement Act breaches ILO conventions on freedom of association and collective bargaining rights. On November 21, the ILO
SYDNEY — The NSW Rural Fire Service Association (RFSA), representing the state's 70,000 rural firefighters, said it will campaign to retain the existing award protection for volunteer rural firefighters, which may be under threat from the federal
Emma Clancy, Perth More than 100 protesters occupied the Western Australian ALP state conference on November 26, held at the Perth Convention Centre. The protesters urged federal Labor to vote against the Coalition government's so-called
Sarah Smith, Perth The WA branch of the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) has come under increasing attack since the federal Coalition government's Building and Construction Industry Improvement Act was passed in September.
DARWIN — On November 19, 70 people attended the first screening of David Bradbury's latest documentary film, Blowin' in the Wind. The documentary focuses on the use of depleted uranium in "conventional" munitions and the impact of DU munitions
Roger X. & Marce Cameron, Sydney "Nobody should assume any of these people are guilty", Dr Waleed Kadous, co-convenor of the Australian Muslim Civil Rights Advocacy Network (AMCRAN), told a November 21 public forum attended by 100 people. Kadous
Amanda Freund, Newcastle Newcastle City Council will fly the West Papuan flag from City Hall on December 1 as a gesture of support for the West Papuan people's struggle for independence from Indonesian rule. Council general manager Janet Dore
Kathy Newnam, Darwin At a November 23 public forum, 50 people heard three Medical Association for the Prevention of War members challenge the myth that the Lucas Heights nuclear reactor in Sydney is necessary on medical grounds. Dr Peter Tait
Don Fowler, Sydney The Leichhardt Peace Group has written a letter of concern about the proposed anti-terrorism legislation to the secretary-general of the United Nations, Kofi Annan, and has requested he refer it to the Office of the United
Jon Lamb, Darwin On November 18 it was revealed by defence minister Robert Hill that one of the outcomes of the Australia-United States Ministerial Consultations (AUSMIN), held on November 17-18, was that the Australian government had given the

World

Margarita Windisch, Caracas Once again, Venezuelans are gearing up for elections. On December 4, the people will go to the polls to elect 167 representatives of the National Assembly (AN) for a five-year term. Since the election of President Hugo
Mike Krebs, Vancouver The crisis on the Kashechewan native reserve in northern Ontario has once again placed the brutal social and living conditions of indigenous people in Canada onto the centre stage of politics. On October 14, Health Canada, the
On November 24, plans were put in place to evacuate the 980 people living on the six Carteret atolls, after they battled for decades with the effects of climate change. The Papua New Guinean government will move 10 families at a time to Bougainville,
Silke Stockle On November 19, solidarity groups from all over Germany that support the Bolivarian revolution in Venezuela gathered in Berlin's Humboldt University. The meeting discussed building a solidarity movement able to prevent a bloody coup
Kerryn Williams On November 22, the US State Department decided to override restrictions on US-Indonesian military ties imposed by Congress less than two weeks earlier. A foreign aid bill approved by Congress made the resumption of US military
Lee Yu Kyung, Pusan The cost of accommodation for each leader attending the APEC summit was US$4000 per day. US President George Bush occupied the whole of Western Chosun Hotel. Some 1000 official participants swallowed $1.5 million at the
Doug Lorimer On November 20, four days before the UN International Atomic Energy Agency's 35-member board began its three-day November meeting, the Majlis (Iran's parliament) adopted a resolution requiring the government to cancel all its voluntary
At least 600 people rallied on November 25 in support of 25 doctors who resigned from the public health system on November 16 after striking for more than two months. The doctors resigned when Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi declared they
Stuart Munckton A key witness in the trial of those charged over the assassination of Venezuelan state prosecutor Danilo Anderson has identified FBI and CIA agents as being involved in planning his death. Anderson, who was killed by a car bomb on
Alex Miller On November 21, police arrested Scottish Socialist Party (SSP) member of the Scottish parliament Tommy Sheridan after a peaceful direct action that prevented British immigration officials from carrying out dawn raids on refugees' homes.
Diet Simon, Bonn While both major parties making up German Chancellor Angela Merkel's new "grand coalition" government — the Christian Democrats and the Social Democrats — are committed, on paper, to the gradual closing down of the country's 17
On November 24, Irish Ferries sent union-busting security guards to take over its ferries in the Irish Sea. Guards boarded the Isle of Inishmore at Pembroke as passengers, then informed the Seamen's Union of Ireland that they had been ordered to take
Federico Fuentes, La Paz This year marks the 20th anniversary of the implementation of Decree 21060, which heralded the dawning of the era of neoliberal "free market" policies in Bolivia. According to Jim Schultz, executive director of the
On November 19, Cuban-born Santiago Alvarez Magrina was detained in Miami by federal US authorities. Alvarez is linked to terrorist Luis Posada Carriles, who was behind the bombing of a commercial airliner that killed 73 people. A stockpile of
At its national conference in November, the anti-war Respect coalition passed the following resolution pledging solidarity with Venezuela's Bolivarian revolution. 1. This conference extends its solidarity to the people of Venezuela and applauds its
Revolutionary Venezuela is challenging the centuries-old prejudices of machismo and homophobia, the legacy of Spanish colonialism in Latin America. Yet as Heisler Vaamonde of the Revolutionary Gay Movement (MGR) told Green Left Weekly's Kiraz Janicke

Culture

BY SCOTT LEWINGTON I first met Melanie Shanahan in Hobart 20 years ago. She had moved down there because of her interest in environmental issues. She was active in Greenpeace in Sydney and, like many other activists, had been inspired by the Save
Canto Coro, a Brunswick-based community choir with a repertoire composed of new work and Latin American and Greek choral classics, and the popular Andean band Inka Marka, present the concert ABLAZE, featuring the beautiful music of Victor Jara.
Russian Dolls: Sex Trade — The story of 10 women forced into a life of prostitution and sexual slavery. SBS, Friday, December 2, 10.05pm. Message Stick: Art Therapy — Looks at how Aboriginal art and artistic expression is being used to help
TankAsian Dub FoundationVirgin Music REVIEW BY JAMES VASSILOPOULOS Once in a decade, a band comes along with a unique mix of creative, new music and politics of depth and definition. The Asian Dub Foundation (ADF) is this group. They have been