Analysis

A protest to demand climate action, Sydney, January 10.

The far right traditionally grows in the context of political despair when fear is channelled into scapegoating.

At the height of the fire crisis over the New Year an Aboriginal elder, who had evacuated from Lakes Entrance to Bairnsdale in Victoria, joined other evacuees in registering for emergency relief. But he was told by a St Vincent de Paul staffer that the agency had “helped enough of your people today”, given a $20 fuel voucher and told not to tell other Aboriginal people about it. The elder walked out, humiliated, and asked his niece to return the voucher.

CFMEU organiser Mark Cross. Photo: Extinction Rebellion

A strategy to promote union participation in the climate movement will draw us one step closer to finishing off PM Scott Morrison and moving to a sustainable future.

The dire lack of government leadership over the New Year bushfire crisis contrasted strongly with the incredible community solidarity and self-organising that took place on the ground. If there is a silver lining to the bush fire catastrophe, it is this community power, which prevented more death and destruction.

While some do not want to discuss the cause of Australia’s horrendous bushfires — runaway climate change — even fewer want to talk about how catastrophic fires are disproportionately affecting women and how it should be tackled. Mary Merkenich looks at the way women cope in emergencies and how the system treats them.

The United States military strike on January 3 that assassinated Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps, Quds Brigade commander Qasem Soleimani and deputy commander of the Iraqi government-affiliated Popular Mobilisation Forces (PMF), Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis and Iran’s retaliation against two US military bases in Iraq on January 8 brought the World to the brink of war.

Anti-war networks and progressive parties have urged the federal Coalition not to support the Donald Trump administration’s latest attack on Iran, that began with the illegal assassination in Iraq of Iranian general Qassem Soleimani and deputy commander of the Iraqi government-affiliated Popular Mobilisation Forces Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis on January 3.

There are two positive things to come out of the horrific bushfire crisis ripping through our country: recognition of the connection between global warming and more frequent and intense bush fires; and the inspiring courage and generosity of volunteers and emergency service personnel to protect their communities, despite being hugely under-resourced.

As the catastrophic fires raged over several states from late December into early January, Green Left’s Pip Hinman asked Shaun McDonald, a professional firefighter currently based in Tasmania about his views. McDonald has been a firefighter for 13 years, fighting fires in three states and territories, including recently being deployed to NSW.

The horror of the devastating and apocalyptic fires in NSW and Victoria not only dampened the New Year party mood, it has fanned anger over the government's obvious failure to respond to the climate emergency.

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