Issue 965

Australia

About 70 people campaigning to save Peron Point from becoming another unwanted canal project braved heavy storms in an action on May 8. They marched from the property of the developer, Cedar Woods, to state parliament in Western Australia to present a petition of more than 8000 signatures....

"Why are Sri Lankan Tamils seeking refuge in Australia? And why are we keeping them locked up?" was the theme of a forum on May 8, sponsored by the Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies (CPCS) and the Sydney Peace Foundation. About 30 people attended the meeting held at the University of Sydney...

About 20 people gathered outside the Department of Immigration offices in Sydney on May 10 to demand freedom for a Tamil refugee named Ranjini and freedom for all refugees with negative ASIO assessments.

Another protest was held outside Villawood detention centre on the same day.

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The Conservation Council of Western Australia released this statement on May 9.

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The Conservation Council of Western Australia (CCWA) has warned that the state government could be repeating the mistakes made on James Price Point by rushing into a major new industrial gas...

“Last month’s announcements by NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell and federal energy minister Tony Burke on coal seam gas mining far from guarantee the health of western Sydney’s water”, said local anti-CSG campaigner, Fred Fuentes.

“Since those announcements, ‘No CSG Blacktown’ has been told...

World

A truck delivering waste from a fracking operation in Greene County, Pennsylvania, on April 19 was quarantined after being rejected by a hazardous waste landfill as too dangerous.

The truck was carrying highly radioactive radium-226 in concentrations 86 times higher than allowed per...

In 2006, a generation of Chilean secondary students learnt how to mobilise, blockade streets, raise demands and carry out occupations. But they also learnt how they could be defeated by a system capable of accommodating and coopting mobilisations.

It is important to note that this revolt...

In the aftermath of the bombing of the Boston Marathon, the Obama administration is broadening its definition of “terrorism” to include fighters for Black rights in the US.

Washington has already used the term so indiscriminately against enemies internationally that it has become...

Hundreds of protesters from the indigenous advocacy NGO Survival International gathered outside Peruvian consulates and embassies in London, Paris, Madrid and San Francisco on April 23. They had gathered to urge the Peruvian government to reconsider expanding the Camisea gas mega-project.

...

When terrorist bombers killed three people in Boston, the FBI moved heaven and earth to apprehend them. When suppliers to Wal-mart and other big brands in Bangladesh killed more than 950 people (as of May 9) on April 24 in one of their garment factory death traps, the FBI sat on its hands....

Ten years ago, then Australian Prime Minister John Howard sent 2000 Australian soldiers to join the US-led invasion of Iraq. Like US President George Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair, Howard lied about Iraq possessing weapons of mass destruction (WMD) to justify an illegal war of...

A truck delivering waste from a fracking operation in Greene County, Pennsylvania, on April 19 was quarantined after being rejected by a hazardous waste landfill as too dangerous.

The truck was carrying highly radioactive radium-226 in concentrations 86 times higher than allowed per...

Before a May 7 visit to US Congress by South Korean President Park Geun-hye, the Workers Solidarity Student Group — the student section of socialist group Workers Solidarity All Together — issued this statement about the threat to war on the Korean peninsula. It was translated by Chris Kim and...

The impact of austerity has thrown politics in Britain into turmoil. Both parties of the ruling coalition government — the Conservative Party (Tories) and the Liberal Democrats — lost heavily in municipal elections in England on May 2 to the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP).

The...

With photos by Lee Yu Kyung in Kuala Lumpur

Up to 120,000 people packed and overflowed a large stadium in Malaysia's capital Kuala Lumpur on May 8 to protest the fraudulent re-election of the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) government on May 5.

The crowd...

The mass, democratic uprising that broke out in Syria in 2011 against the regime of Bashar Al-Assad has increasingly turned into a prolonged civil war, with violence worsening and accusations of war crimes levelled against the regime and sections of the armed opposition.

The situation...

Analysis

The federal Labor government is desperate for you to believe that its “no advantage” refugee policy is working. And from offshore detention to impoverished “living in the community”, children and teenagers will be no exception to its increasingly cruel measures.

Immigration minister...

What do a conservative leader and a radical feminist have in common? More than we would have guessed, it seems.

Recently an Islamic group held an event at the University of Melbourne. The seating was arranged according to gender, as is common with such events. A reporter from the ...

The first School of Rebellion, held in association with Marxism 2013 over the Easter weekend in Melbourne, drew about 30 kids for a weekend of thinking, talking, making noise, art, music, poetry, mess and friends.

It was declared “awesome” by a random sample of kids, teachers and parents...

“The anti-Semite Stephen Hawking can’t even wipe his own ass." “Someone should release the hand brake when he’s on a hill." “He should die already." These were just some of the comments left on Facebook after the most famous cosmologist in the world, Stephen Hawking, announced he was respecting...

As the 2013 federal budget looms, both the Labor government and the Opposition insist on the need to cut social spending. All the talk is about bringing the budget back into surplus as soon as possible and the cuts, they argue, will be needed to end the federal deficit.

Ministers in...

The environment movement in Tasmania has split over support for a forest “peace” agreement the Tasmanian Greens and environment groups made with the logging industry.

The environment groups have been in negotiations with the industry for almost three years. As the industry declined,...

Finally, we have a reason to get excited about elections. Yes, billionaire mining magnate Clive Palmer has formed a political party and is determined to become Australia’s next prime minister.

For the first time in god knows how long, we have a real alternative to the tweedledum-...

Seventeen kilometres by ferry from Perth is Western Australia's "premier tourist destination". This is Rottnest Island, whose scabrous wild beauty and isolation evoked for me Robben Island in South Africa.

Empires are never short of devil's islands; what makes Rottnest different, indeed...

Liberal Premier Colin Barnett has proposed reforms to license and register some forms of sex work. And again people are referring to the bill as “legalisation” and “partial decriminalisation” when it is not.

It’s deeply concerning when big party politicians and mainstream journalists do...

The United Nations General Assembly met after World War II in 1948 and committed to 30 articles on human rights. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) has been signed by most nations and serves in many cases as a legally binding document on human rights.

Article 25 in the UDHR...

University students across Australia will take to the streets on May 14 to protest the federal Labor government’s $2.8 billion cuts to higher education.

The call by the National Union of Students (NUS) for a “student strike against education cuts” has not only received support from...

Culture

No Local: Why Small-Scale Alternatives Won’t Change the World
Greg Sharzer
Zero Books, 2012

Against a backdrop of global climate disasters, financial panics, and inequality, localism — the creation of small-scale local systems of production and...

Fighting Fund

The online Sydney Morning Herald published an interesting interactive table of possible federal budget expenditures and cuts. You can click on an icon for several costed items listed as "Cuts to programs" or "Raise taxes or end concessions". As you click on a cut or revenue measure the...