Australia

First Nations forum: ‘The system destroys us’

More than 200 people attended a public forum called "Resistance Rising: A Panel of First Nations Leaders" at the Brunswick Town Hall in Melbourne on April 18.

The forum was jointly sponsored by Warriors of the Aboriginal Resistance and the Indigenous Social Justice Association.

Co-founder of Warriors of the Aboriginal Resistance Meriki Onus told the audience: "The system is constantly knocking at our door. The system destroys us or takes our children."

Refugees resist transfer to Nauru

Clashes erupted on April 15 at the Wickham Point detention centre in Darwin when refugees resisted attempts to send them back to the Australian-run concentration camp in Nauru where they have suffered serious human rights abuses.

Education union calls for Pyne's resignation over climate sceptic funding

Federal education minister Christopher Pyne has given $4 million to Danish climate sceptic Bjørn Lomborg to set up the Australian Consensus Centre at the University of Western Australia.

Lomborg is a well-known climate policy sceptic and the director of the Copenhagen Consensus Center, whose funding was cut by the Danish government in 2012.

PHOTO STORY: Counter-rallies challenge 'Reclaim Australia'


Adelaide. Photo: Welcome to Australia via Facebook.

About 2000 people joined a rally against racism in Federation Square on April 4.

The Melbourne rally was the largest counter-mobilisation against the racist, “Reclaim Australia” protests organised across Australia. The Melbourne “Reclaim Australia” event was attended by about 500 people.

Duvtons hail 'our very own idiot'


Melbourne punk band The Duvtons have come out of a five-year hiatus to record a catchy new anti-Abbott song to hasten the fall of “our very own idiot”.

Cairns musos call for Abbott's head

“Down The Abbott Hole”
By Zelda Grimshaw
Download free

A group of musicians in Cairns, Queensland, have released a song controversially calling for the head of Tony Abbott.

“Down the Abbott Hole” refers to Abbott’s Australia as a bleak and sterile environment, in which fear reigns over logic, and the atmosphere is “cold as ice, black as coal”. The song can be streamed online and was being played by radio stations all over the country just hours after its release.

Australia's leap into World War I

Hell-Bent: Australia’s Leap Into The Great War
Douglas Newton
Scribe, 2014
344 pages, $32.99 (pb)

Behind all the froth, then and now, about the noble cause of World War I — defence of freedom against German aggression — lay a far less exalted reality, writes retired University of Western Sydney historian Douglas Newton.

The war’s “grand plan” for Britain, candidly called “The Spoils” by the British Colonial Secretary, was to divvy the world up among the victors.

West Papua: New Indonesian gov't offers more suffering

Indonesia is supposed to have a new liberal leadership with the election of new president Jodo Widodo, the first president since the Suharto dictatorship was overthrown in 198 to be elected from outside the Javanese military/political elite.

But the Australian public, in the furore over the fate of two the Australians and others facing execution, are getting a glimpse of the stance of Widodo — and other influential Indonesian leaders — towards human rights, justice and compassion.

TPP would hurt public health in Australia

A report has found that the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement would be likely to adversely affect the health of the Australian population.

The TPP is a free trade deal being negotiated by countries on the Pacific rim: the US, Australia, Singapore, New Zealand, Chile, Brunei, Canada, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, Vietnam and Japan. These countries represent about 40% of global GDP.

What’s right with Bill Gammage’s book

I take issue with Ben Courtice’s and Emma Murphy’s criticism of my review of Bill Gammage’s book, The Biggest Estate on Earth: How Aborigines Made Australia in the January 28 Green Left Weekly.

I have two major arguments with their criticism. First, Gammage has made a major contribution to our understanding of how Aboriginal Australians cared for the land for more than 60,000 years right across the continent.

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