Issue 901

Australia

EMERGENCY OCCUPY SYDNEY PROTEST AT THE SUPREME COURT

Defend our right to protest!

The NSW police are taking Occupy Sydney organisers to the Supreme Court on November 4 to try to ban our planned march through the Sydney CBD.

Occupy Sydney protesters will...

The next “Freedom Wave” to Gaza is on its way. Sydney based youth worker Michael Coleman joins delegates from several countries on the Canadian boat Tahrir as it sets sail for Gaza.

Two civilian boats, the Canadian Tahrir (Liberation), and the Irish Saoirse (...

The Darwin Asylum Seeker Support and Advocacy Network (DASSAN) released the statement below on October 31.

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Two Rohingyan refugees detained in Darwin's Northern Immigration Detention Centre (NIDC) will tomorrow enter week two of their peaceful rooftop protest. The men have...

The second Sunday forum of the Free University of Occupied Brisbane discussed “creative forms of protest” on October 30 in Post Office Square. Phil Monsour from Justice for Palestine talked about the boycott divestment and sanctions campaign against apartheid Israel.

He discussed the...

The statement below has been officially endorsed by the general assemblies of Occupy Brisbane, Occupy Melbourne and Occupy Sydney. Read more coverage on the Occupy movement here.

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We are calling for a nationwide peaceful occupation across Australia on November 5. This...

Despite the police brutality faced by Occupy Melbourne protesters just over a week before during their eviction from City Square, Occupy Melbourne returned to the streets on October 29.

About 500 occupiers assembled at the State Library with the same anti-corporate message and a louder...

A powerful art exhibition took place in Brisbane over October 15-23, commemorating the 10th anniversary of the SIEV-X tragedy on October 19, 2001, in which 353 asylum seekers, including 146 children, drowned when their fishing boat sank between Indonesia and Australia.

The exhibition...

In the wake of acts of self-harm and protests by detained refugees, people in Darwin gathered to show their support for a more humane refugee solution.

Twenty people rallied outside the offices of the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) on October 26 to call for and end to...

Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU) members in the Australian Taxation Office have voted to reject management's latest proposed enterprise agreement. As a result, the CPSU has launched a campaign for a "no" vote in the all-staff ballot to take place over November 9-15.

Management is...

Occupy Perth released the statement below on October 28.

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Perth activists are currently occupying Forrest Place in the centre of the CBD. The 100 protesters who have committed to staying the night are calling for an end to corporate greed and for the rise of a real and...

About 1000 people took part in a march on the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Perth on October 28. The peaceful march and rally involved people from many different movements and causes who united under the banner: “Justice and climate action, not racism and war.

The...

NSW secondary and primary public school teachers will stop work for two hours on November 2 to consider any salary offer from the state government. Should no fair and reasonable offer be made, the meetings will consider taking a 24-hour strike at the end of November.

The NSW Teachers...

Occupy Brisbane has been going strong since it was launched on October 15 international United for Global Change day, along with indefinite occupations in Melbourne and Sydney.

See all of Green Left's extensive Occupy movement coverage

The occupations in Melbourne and Sydney were...

The Araluen Spirit crew took strong action on Thursday 27 October in defence of Australian shipping jobs.

At the Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) National Council on 27 October, the Council resolved the following in support of the Araluen Spirit crew:

...

The Caroona Coal Action Group released the statement below on October 27.

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Landowners from communities across the Liverpool Plains have been forced to take direct action against the mining giant Santos to stop it pushing ahead with ‘pilot production’ of coal seam gas (CSG)...

About 40 people gathered on the outskirts of Villawood detention centre for a nighttime vigil on October 26 to commemorate the death of a Tamil refugee detainee who had taken his own life that morning.

The gathering included refugee activists, members of the Tamil community and friends...

Teachers say the Barry O’Farrell Coalition state government has divulged its plans to cut TAFE wages and conditions and then likely privatise it by splitting TAFE teachers away from the collective bargaining power of their primary and secondary teacher colleagues.

Education minister...

A groundswell of support for the campaign against a proposed open cut coalmine is taking place in Victoria’s Bacchus Marsh area and beyond.

This growing support for the No New Coal in Bacchus Marsh campaign was on display at a recent public meeting in the town, where a lawyer from the...

Occupy Sydney activists organised a protest outside the Qantas shareholders conference on October 28 at the University of New South Wales in support of Qantas workers struggling for decent wages and job security.

Peter Somerville, the general manager of the Australian Licensed Aircraft...

World

Israeli has launched a series of air strikes on the Gaza Strip since October 29. ABC.net.au reported on November 2 that Israel was preparing its military for a ground assault on the besieged territory — home to about 1.5 million Palestinians.

At least 11 Palestinians have been killed,...

A victory was achieved by the anti-memorandum, anti-government movement on October 28.

It was commemoration day of the resistance to the German occupation of Greece, which started in 1940. Across the whole country, the traditional student and military march was turned into an event of...

See article: Greek people resist troika's attacks

The article below is an abridged US Socialist Worker editorial in response to United States President Barack Obama's October 21 announcement that all US soldiers would be withdrawn from Iraq by the end of the year.

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More than a million Iraqis dead. Nearly 5000 US military...

Serious flooding in Thailand has affected millions of people.

Houses, property and infrastructure have been seriously damaged. Factories and workplaces have been closed and hundreds of thousands of people have become temporarily unemployed. Agricultural land has been flooded, leading to...

The Philippines, one of the poorest Asian nations with a huge foreign debt ― caused by successive corrupt governments ― remains a place of simmering class tension.

In the past six weeks, there have been mobilisations around a range of issues.

On October 11, there was a national...

The October 23 declaration of Libya’s “liberation” by the National Transitional Council (NTC), the de-facto government since taking Tripoli from former dictator Muammar Gaddafi on August 21, was a showcase victory for the West’s vision of how the Arab democratic awakening should progress.

...

In September, Green Left Weekly spoke to Mamdouh Habashi and Dr Muhammad Hesham, members of the Egyptian Socialist Party (ESP), about developments in Egypt since the popular uprising overthrew dictator Hosni Mubarak on February 11.

The ESP is one of several new parties formed...

A 50% cut of part of Greece’s debt was decided on by a summit of European leaders on October 26. The deal will entail long-term austerity measures being enforced on the Greek people.

Representatives of the “troika” (the European Union, European Central Bank and International Monetary...

Amid the worldwide media coverage of Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi’s death, a historic development in another conflict went largely unnoticed.

After more than 40 years of a military campaign against the Spanish state, the Basque armed group ETA announced a permanent end to its use of...

The whistleblowing website WikiLeaks sits on the precipice. With it sits freedom of expression and freedom of the press — two fundamental human rights encapsulated in the charter of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

WikiLeaks is under a series of attacks and could be forced to...

Thousands of palm oil workers in the Puerto Wilches district, Colombia, were on general strike on October 27. The workers were defending collective bargaining and opposing the spread of casualisation and precarious work on palm oil farms.

In early August, a major company, Palmas...

Support for the Occupy Wall Street (OWS) movement that has swept more than 100 cities in the United States is rising among current and former members of the US military.

The support from former and current soldiers for the Occupy movement against corporate greed was brought into the...

In what conservative columnists are describing as a martyrdom for Christian lefties, the iconic “jeans and T-shirt” canon chancellor of St Paul’s Cathedral in London, Reverend Rev Dr Giles Fraser, has resigned in protest as the cathedral moves to evict Occupy London from its steps.

...

The Party of Wall Street has ruled unchallenged in the United States for far too long.

It has totally dominated the policies of presidents over at least four decades (if not longer). It has legally corrupted Congress via the craven dependency of politicians in both parties upon its money...

Analysis

On October 18, about 200 students held a “Save Political Economy” demonstration at the University of Sydney, organised by the Political Economy Students Society (EcopSoc).

The university administration is considering abolishing political economy as a separate department.

The...

The decision by Qantas management to ground the airline's fleet and look out its workforce has caused uproar around the country. However, the mainstream media have overwhelmingly focused on the position and arguments publicly put by Qantas CEO Alan Joyce.

The views of the unions that...

Warren Smith, assistant secretary of the Maritime Union of Australia, addressed Occupy Sydney at Martin Place on October 22. His speech appears below.

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Some people have been asking why the Maritime Union of Australia is here today, why we’ve been here since day one, why we...

Renowned political theorist and writer Noam Chomsky spoke to Occupy Boston on October 22. Below is an abridged transcript of his comments.

See all of Green Left's extensive Occupy coverage here

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It’s pretty hard to give a talk for the Howard Zinn memorial lecture at...

See all of Green Left's extensive Occupy coverage here

The global Occupy movement has inspired huge numbers of Australians who have grown chronically disengaged with the political game-playing of the two big parties and an economic system that puts profit before people and the planet....

Some conservative commentators have declared the global Occupy movement to be “socialist”. Right-wing activist and musician Ted Nugent said in the Washington Times on October 14: “Occupy Wall Street is nothing more than anti-American socialism on parade...

“These useful idiots...

Prime Minister Julia Gillard met Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa on October 26 to discuss allegations of human rights abuses. The meeting took place just hours after a young Tamil refugee killed himself inside Sydney’s Villawood Immigration Detention Centre.

The young man who died...

See all of Green Left's extensive Occupy coverage here

I joined Resistance just over a month ago and when I heard Sydney would join the Occupy Together movement, I wasn’t quite sure what to make of it. From my understanding, Australia wasn’t experiencing even comparable economic...

Jess Moore from Stop CSG Illawarra addressed Occupy Sydney at Martin Place on October 22. Moore, who is also a member of the Socialist Alliance, was awared the NSW Nature Conservation Council's Rising Star award for "the most outstanding environmental effort of an individual under 30". Her...

Australian police in two cities now have decided to follow in the footsteps of their counterparts in the US and Europe and forcibly break up peaceful Occupy protests. But rather than deter this broad non-partisan movement of the 99%, it is helping it grow and re-occupy.

Inspired by the...

Annie Leonard is the creator of the Story of Stuff project, a series of animated films that discuss our pressing social, environmental and economic concerns and the effort to build a more sustainable and just world. Her films include the Story of Stuff (see below), the Story of Electronics and...

Editorial

See also:
Unions respond to lock out: 'This is blackmail'
Occupy Sydney supports Qantas workers
Unions stand up to Qantas management
All of Green Left's extensive Occupy coverage

“I don't understand what the Occupy protests are all about,” is one...

Letters

Justice for West Papua

I write to express my deep distress at the recent brutal attacks and killings by the Indonesian military in West Papua. While the Australian government and people should strive for good relations with Indonesia, this should not at the expense of...

Culture

For a lighthearted look at some of the difficulties and frustrations with the democratic process of the Occupy movement, have a look at The Meeting: A Democratic Satire, by Kahtia Lontis.

It is described as "a short satirical fiction piece based on the painful process of grassroots...

Inside Al-Qaeda and the TalibanM
By Syed Saleem Shahzad
Pluto Press, 2011
260 pp., $39.95

Deadly Waters, The Hidden World of Somalia’s Pirates
By Jan Bahadur
Scribe, 2011
300 pp., $29.95

...

Inside Pine Gap: The Spy Who Came in from the Desert
By David Rosenberg
Hardie Grant Books, 2011
216 pages, $35 (pb)

David Rosenberg found 1960s television show Mission Impossible “irresistible” with its patriotic tales of high-tech US...

Bad as Me
Tom Waits
ANTI- Records
www.tomwaits.com
Listen to the album here

Tom Waits, the 61-year-old veteran musical maverick, released his first album of entirely new music in seven years on October 25.

The 17th studio album by...

Fighting Fund

The ABC’s Q & A program on October 24 was the first to discuss the Occupy movement sweeping the world. Reportedly there are now occupations in 2200 cities. It revealed why the politicians that represent the richest 1% have no credibility any more.

Liberal Party MP...