Issue 868

Australia

Across Australia, moves are afoot to pass bills to legalise same-sex marriage.

The Tasmanian Greens were first to introduce such a bill in 2008. Greens leader Nick McKim introduced the bill again in November.

The Tasmanian ALP was the first state Labor branch to announce its...

More than 400 people attended a February 7 forum that condemned the federal government’s intervention into Aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory.

The forum was organised by Concerned Australians. It coincided with the launch of a public statement addressed “to the people of...

The fall of Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak sent waves of joy, jubilation and relief through Sydney's Egyptian community, who celebrated their country's newfound freedom outside Town Hall on February 12.

Amnesty International hosted the celebrations. Socialist Alliance members, and...

More than 60 people attended a public meeting in Russell Vale, north of Wollongong, on February 3 to oppose a massive coalmine expansion in their neighbourhood.

The meeting was organised by Illawarra Residents for Responsible Mining (IRRM).

Gujurat NRE, owner of No. 1 Colliery in...

A new report by the North East Forest Alliance (NEFA) has slammed government-owned Forests NSW for what it calls “illegal and blatantly unsustainable logging” in public lands near Coffs Harbour.

Forests NSW’s timber has been accredited as ecological and sustainable by the government-...

In a humble local court in Newcastle on January 31, a major battle in the war on climate change began. A court is a theatrical space where we can overhear the clashing narratives around a central event.

The defendants were six of the seven men and women from climate action group Rising...

Members of the National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU) at the University of New South Wales (UNSW) voted on January 13 to lift their ban on the transmission of student results.

More than 40 staff members who took part in the lawful industrial action had been stood down without pay for...

Socialist Alliance candidate for upper house in the coming NSW elections Bea Bleile expressed her continuing support for family of TJ Hickey, who are still fighting for justice following his death in 2004.

TJ Hickey, a young Aboriginal man, was killed during a police chase. He was...

WikiLeaks has released secret US diplomatic cables that show secret Australian government negotiations to sell uranium to India, despite it not being a signature to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

Other cables show the government covered up details about its spy satellite...

World

Venezuelan foreign ministry official statement

The president and commander-in-chief of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez, in the name of the Venezuelan people, applauds the genuine lesson of political and democratic maturity that the courageous Egyptian...

Venezuela marked the 12th anniversary of President Hugo Chavez’s first oath of office in February 1999 on February 2.

Chavez won presidential elections in December 1998 on a pro-poor program that pledged to break the corrupt, two-party system that had dominated Venezuela since 1958....

With the world beginning to feel the initial effects of changing weather patterns due to climate change, governments around the world are faced with immense challenges to ensure the safety of their citizens.

The lack of action from most governments and key decision-makers reflects...

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez expressed his support for workers in a dispute at a Venezuelan Coca-Cola plant conflict in a televised address on February 4.

“If Coca-Cola doesn’t want to comply with the constitution and the law, well, we can live without Coca-Cola,” he said to cheers...

When the British Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government announced it would raise the maximum yearly tuition fee universities could charge students to £9000, thousands of students took to the streets of London in a series of protests.

Highlights included occupying the...

“The situation in Egypt is different than the situation of Sudan,” Sudanese government spokesperson Rabie Atti insisted to reporters after January 30 anti-government protests.

“We don’t have one small group that controls everything. Wealth is distributed equally. We’ve given power to the...

United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, speaking at the Munich Security Conference Plenary Session on February 5, said the US had always stood for the principle “free people govern themselves best”.

This, she said, is “not simply a matter of idealism, it is a strategic...

Bolivian President Evo Morales praised “the popular uprisings in Tunisia and in Egypt” in his speech to the opening ceremony of the World Social Forum in the west African nation of Senegal on February 6.

Morales said the uprisings were part of the “rebellion by the peoples of the Arab...

A joyous night in Cairo on February 11. What bliss to be alive, to be an Egyptian and an Arab.

In Tahrir Square, they chanted: “Egypt is free” and “We won!”

The removal of Mubarak alone (and getting the bulk of his US$40 billion loot back for the national treasury), without any...

The attempt by Hosni Mubarak’s regime to stop anti-government protests by shutting down the internet and mobile phone services failed to stop the popular uprising that forced the dictator out on February 11.

Tens of thousands of people took to the streets of Egypt on January 25 demanding...

In a world-shaking event, after 18 days of constant street protests, the Egyptian people’s revolution won a huge victory when dictator Hosni Mubarak finally resigned on February 11.

On that day, designated the “Day of Departure” by protesters, an estimated 20 million people (out of a...

US investigators have admitted their efforts to find grounds on which to prosecute WikiLeaks editor-in-chief Julian Assange over the whistleblowing website’s release of hundreds of thousands of classified US documents were in trouble.

They have been forced to concede they have been...

Over the decades that have marked the tenure of Egypt's “President for Life” Hosni Mubarak, there has been one consistent nexus for anger, organisation and practical experience in the ancient art of street fighting: the country's soccer clubs.

During the current pro-democracy uprising,...

Analysis

I have thought for a long time that it is essential the Australian climate movement tune in more directly to the natural climate cycle, and thus popular consciousness of climate itself.

We as a country have just experienced the traumas of floods, then the most intense cyclone in recorded...

Nine weeks after a boat carrying asylum seekers was smashed apart on the shores of Christmas Island on December 15, traumatised survivors remained locked up by the department of immigration. They are almost completely cut off from family and support.

At least 48 people may have died in...

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange delivered a pre-recorded video address to a public meeting at Melbourne’s Federation Square on February 4. Below is the transcript of Assange’s speech.

*****

Thank you so much for coming to this rally. Your presence here and your support, in homes...

WikiLeaks has launched the WikiLeaks roundtable series, in which founder and editor Julian Assange addresses, in a short video, questions that people put to the organisation.

This forum aims to cut out “intermediaries” such as the mainstream corporate media, and instead allow the...

Conservative Party chairperson and the first Muslim woman to attend the British cabinet, Sayeeda Warsi, said in January that Islamophobia and prejudice against Muslims has “passed the dinner table test” and is now widely accepted in Britain.

The rise of Islamophobia within Western...

For communities affected by Cyclone Yasi and the recent floods across Queensland, Western Australia, NSW, Victoria and Tasmania, it will be no comfort to hear that the Fair Work Act provides little protection for workers from unscrupulous employers.

Many bosses will choose to stand...

In the space of a few weeks, Australia and the world have been rocked by devastating weather events, from huge snowstorms across the US to flash flooding and cyclones in Australia. Many of these events have not just been catastrophic, but have set new records for weather.

Let’s pause to...

At a packed Leichhardt Town Hall candidates meeting on February 7, education minister Verity Firth all but conceded that the Labor state government would not be returned on March 26.

Firth said she was looking forward to rebuilding the ALP from the opposition benches. She was...

It isn’t often that socialists, Greens, Liberals and NGOs agree on an issue. But that is the case regarding uranium exploration in the Arkaroola region in the Flinders Ranges, 700 kilometres north of Adelaide.

Marathon Resources announced on February 7 that the South Australian Labor...

Less than a week after Australians learned about the death of the 22nd Australian soldier killed in Afghanistan, Corporal Richard Atkinson, footage aired by Channel 7 on February 8 showed opposition leader Tony Abbott caught with his pants down.

“Shit happens,” Abbott told a US general...

Resistance!

Youth are leading revolts in Egypt, Tunisia and the rest of the Arab world to overthrow US backed regimes.

February 8 statement by Resistance, socialist youth organisation.

Resistance stands in solidarity with people in Tunisia, Egypt and the Arab world to overthrow US backed...

Culture

When a Billion Chinese Jump — How China Will Save the World, or Destroy It
By Jonathan Watts
Faber & Faber, 2010
485 pages, $32.95
http://site.whenabillionchinesejump.com/

When Jonathan Watts was a child growing up in England, he used to pray...

Green Left Weekly turns 20!

Send your own greetings and congratulations to weekly.greenleft@gmail.com

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One of the despairs of our time is a corporate media that speaks for authority and power, rarely for its readers and viewers. One of the excitements of our time is the means by which we can now...

Send your own greetings and congratulations to weekly.greenleft@gmail.com

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Over the course of the past 20 years, Green Left Weekly has emerged as a focal point of the world green left movement, its leading weekly guide to theory and practice. Long may its flag fly! —...

Greetings to Green Left from around Australia
Greetings to Green Left from around the world
Send your own greetings to weekly.greenleft@gmail.com .

Twenty years ago, on Monday February 18, 1991, the first issue of Green Left Weekly was produced. Its full-colour poster...