#366: Tariq Ali to give Robb lectures in March

GLOBAL PEACE AND JUSTICE AUCKLAND NEWSLETTER No. 366, February 18, 2010

WHAT’S ON

ON THIS SUNDAY ON RADIO NZ: 9:40 DICK SCOTT – THE ’51 WATERFRONT DISPUTE

This week marks 60 years since the 1951 Waterfront dispute began and it remains the biggest industrial confrontation in New Zealand’s history. It lasted 151 days and at its peak, 22,000 wharfies and other trade unionists were off the job. Employers and the government called it a strike, the workers said it was a lockout. Historian Dick Scott talks with Chris about the dispute and its legacy.

Dick Scott’s account of the dispute, ‘151 Days’, was published in 1952. http://www.bookcouncil.org.nz/Writers/Profiles/Scott,%20Dick; http://www.nzhistory.net.nz/politics/the-1951-waterfront-dispute

NEW ZEALAND NOT FOR SALE: TRANS-PACIFIC PARTNERSHIP AGREEMENT TEACH-IN AND STRATEGY GATHERING SUNDAY, FEB 20

Sunday February 20th,10am – 4.00pm, Canterbury Community Law Centre, 281 Madras Street, Christchurch

A teach-in is being held to coincide with the first day of the NZ – US Partnership Forum being held in Christchurch February 20—22.

Speakers: Murray Horton, “Overview – why building a campaign is important”; Bill Rosenberg, “National Implications”; Jane Kelsey, “International Implications”. One of the most important issues in this year’s election is whether New Zealanders will end up as tenants in our own country (to quote the Prime Minister). The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) is a “free trade” agreement currently under negotiation between NZ and 8 other countries, including the U.S.The countries want to complete negotiation by the end of 2011.Trade is only a minor part of the agreement. That’s just a clever branding exercise. A TPPA would be an agreement that guarantees special rights to foreign investors. Decisions – For us, By us, Made here! More Information nznot4sale www.nznotforsale.org

AUCKLAND ANARCHIST ASSEMBLY: DIRECT ACTION AGAINST POVERTY AND BOSSES, A NEW INFOSHOP + MORE, WED FEB 23

What: Auckland Anarchist Assembly; When: 6:30pm – 8:30pm Wednesday 23 February; Where: Cityside, 8A Mt. Eden Road, Auckland

An informal evening of ideas, news and action about anarchism and anarchists in Tamaki Makaurau/Auckland and around the world. All welcome, bring a plate and some friends. Vegan soup and bread will be provided. Koha for the use of the space and for organising the next event is welcome.

— Short presentations and discussions on —

* Jafas + direct action = new poverty ass-kicking organisation Auckland Action Against Poverty

*A proposal for a new anarchist infoshop

*Seattle anarchists + friends have made the class war cool again and so can we

*Food Not Bombs is back, with all new recipes

*Anarchist grease monkeys + radical bike workshop = tips on running over your boss with a bicycle + more

*Why you should car pool for nine hours to Wellington to march with us against factory farming

*Open discussion – bring your own ideas, news and topics

Organised by the Auckland Anarchist Network, an information-sharing network for Auckland anarchists.

To join our mailing list please email: aucklandanarchistnetwork [at] gmail [dot] com

Facebook event: http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=173121132733718

HUMAN RIGHTS, BURMA AND HAWAII – FEB 26 & 28

Jace Hobbs, a Quaker human rights advocate now living in New Zealand, will give two free presentations at the Quaker Meeting House, 113 Mount Eden Road, Mount Eden. Contact phone Barbara 8468399.

Why They Must Run”, Saturday February 26th, 2-4pm

This is a multimedia and first hand exposition of the situation of the Hill Tribes of Burma and why tens of thousands of them have sought refuge in neighbouring Thailand. Jace will show secretly filmed video footage of the military inside Burma and of the courageous people who risk all to assist the internally displaced persons inside that country. The tale is inspirational and shows the very best and the worst of human action. Jace is the founder and director of the Orphaned Burmese Children’s Home, a registered non-profit organisation that builds school facilities inside the Pao/Shan refugee camps on the Thai side of the border with Burma. Information about this project is available on the website http://www.oneworldchildrensfund.org.

Hawaii, the Once and Future Nation”, Monday February 28th, 7-9pm

This covers the history of the nation of Hawaii and the unique nature of its supposed annexation into the United States. A powerpoint presentation shows the facts surrounding the unlawful and deceitful military takeover of Hawaii in spite of treaty obligations and other international legal agreements. The life of the citizens of Hawaii is presented as well as the inspiring actions of a generation of activists advocating for a just restitution of national rights. You will be surprised at the culture, the legal footings of their claims, and the steadfastness of their efforts. Jace was the educational director for the Reinstated Kingdom of Hawaii, a group of several thousand Hawaiians who claim they have lawfully reinstated Hawaii and demand recognition for their status in the courts of the U.S. and soon in The Hague.

JOIN THE BIG PUSH AGAINST ECE CUTS – MARCH UP QUEEN ST FEB 26, ASSEMBLE 10.30AM QUEEN ELIZABETH SQUARE

NZEI are cranking up the campaign against the Government’s shortsighted Early Childhood Education cuts that will force many early childhood education centres to either reduce services or raise fees. They have a petition I’m hoping you will download (PDF) and circulate (deadline 20 May). And if you live in Auckland, they are planning a march up Queen Street for Saturday 26 February. There is a cool A4 poster/flyer (PDF) promoting the march that I’m also hoping those of you in Auckland will download and distribute.

SOCIAL JUSTICE HUI – PORIRUA FEB 26

Friday, February 25 (6pm) to Saturday February 26 (8.30pm) at Bishop Viard College, 20 Kenepuru Drive, Porirua

“Working for the Common Good: Being Salt and Light”.

TARIQ ALI GIVING ROBB LECTURES AT AUCKLAND UNI IN MARCH

The prominent political commentator and activist Tariq Ali will lecture on “Empire and its futures” at The University of Auckland next month. As speaker at the 2011 Sir Douglas Robb Lectures he will deal turn with three issues: “Islam and its discontents”, “US power today: The global hegemon”, “The rise of China”. His lectures are on 17, 21 and 23 March (7pm) in the Fisher & Paykel Appliances Auditorium, Owen G Glenn Building, 12 Grafton Road.

Tariq Ali will discuss the likely outcomes of a changing world with American military power transcending US economic weaknesses, the amazing rise of China and the continuing occupations in the Arab world and South Asia. “Is it the case, as many argue, that the US empire is now in irretrievable decline? Will China flex its military muscles one day?”

His opening lecture is particularly topical, looking at the impact on the region and elsewhere as US-backed dictators crumble and fall in the Middle East, heralding a new Arab reawakening. He will also ask how these changes will affect the jihadi groups that have been active in the region. London-based and published on every continent, Tariq Ali has been a leading figure of the international left since the 1960s. He is an editor of New Left Review and has written more than 20 books on world history and politics as well as seven novels.

Born in Pakistan he attended Oxford University where he became involved in student politics and the movement against the Vietnam war. He is a critic of neoliberal economics and his book The Clash of Fundamentalisms: Crusades, Jihads and Modernity was a response to 9/11. His latest book is The Obama Syndrome: War Abroad.

All are welcome at the Robb Lectures and admission is free. Full details are at www.auckland.ac.nz/robb

A life in writing: Tariq Ali – ‘It’s a problem people have had to come to terms with at different times in history: what do you do in a period of defeat?’ http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2010/may/08/tariq-ali-life-in-writing

Tariq Ali: Solidarity with the Egyptian people

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=ZTiBfFR00K0 http://www.auckland.ac.nz/uoa/home/about/news-events-and-notices/events/template/event_item.jsp?cid=11237

Egypt’s Joy – Toppling the Autocrat By Tariq Ali http://www.zcommunications.org/egypts-joy-by-tariq-ali

‘Egypt fed up with foreign bullying – people won’t accept new stooge’

Tariq Ali on upheaval in the Arab world: An Arab 1848: Despots totter and fall http://links.org.au/node/2156

KOTARE TRUST INVITES YOU TO THE FOLLOWING WORKSHOP SERIES: MOBILISING SUPPORT FOR UNION CAMPAIGNS

This workshop series is a space for union organisers to strategise on building support for union-wide campaigns with other progressive social justice movements and networks. We want people to come away from the workshops feeling energised and committed about being a unionist, feeling a strong sense of place in a wider social justice movement, and having a range of tools for building support among allies.

The workshops run over four Mondays in March, April and May. It’s okay if you miss some of the workshops, but for those that can come to them all, they will build on each other.

Monday March 14, 4.30pm-7.30pm. Strategy vs. Tactics.

Strategy, tactics, goals, objectives? Understanding the overall strategy for a campaign is critical to choosing the tactics to achieve it. This session will look at elements of campaign strategy, and critical path analysis: what sequence of events needs to happen in order to get to our overall goal?

Monday April 4, 4.30pm-7.30pm. What are our goals?

Discussion on what the critical issues facing workers and their unions are right now. What are the root causes, and what are our responses? This session will use situational analysis tools to go deeper into the context of current union struggles.

Monday April 18, 4.30pm-7.30pm. What techniques do we have to achieve the big goals?

Building on the earlier discussion on strategy and tactics, this session will look at what tools unions have to achieve campaign goals.

Monday May 2, 4.30pm-7.30pm. Who’s affected and how: coalition building

Using tools such as power mapping, this session will look at practical strategies for unions in coalition building with other progressive justice movements and community organisations, such as welfare and beneficiary rights activists.

Venue: All sessions will be run at Trades Hall, 147 Great North Road, Grey Lynn. Parking is available on nearby side streets.

Cost: $0-$50 sliding scale for each workshop. Please self-assess your payment and consider your means when deciding what to pay. Donations towards Kotare’s running costs are very welcome. If you are on a low income, please feel welcome to attend at a subsidised rate.

Registration: Please register as soon as possible and no later than one week before each session. Spaces are limited and we want to ensure a good representation from different unions. We will be providing snacks/a light meal and need to know dietary needs in advance.

Facilitation team: Tanya Newman, Rachel Mackintosh and Sam Huggard

Registration. Registration is required. For more information and to register, please contact Tanya Newman at education or phone (09) 551 7765 or mobile (021) 0276-9112.

NEW ANNOUNCEMENTS

FOREIGN CONTROL WATCHDOG 125 – DECEMBER 2010

http://www.converge.org.nz/watchdog/25/index25.htm

– Government Happy To Be Doormat For Transnationals But Tries To Quarantine Hot Issue Of Land Sales by Murray Horton

– Money, Dirty Money, Foreign Investment And The Dairy Industry by Liz Gordon

– Corporatising NZ Agriculture: The Growing Crisis At Home And Abroad by Dennis Small

– “Fishy Goings On” In The New Zealand Fishing Industry by Chas Muir- ANZ and ING Frozen Funds Fiasco – Update by Sue Newberry

– Is the Supercity Hide’s Last Stand? by John Minto

– Alert On Welfare Reforms: Tnc Agenda Lurks Here, Too by Sue Bradford

– Issues In Privatisation – Costs And Benefits by Bill Rosenberg

– Who Should Look After Older People Who Need Residential Care? A Charitable Trust? A Merchant Bank Or Private Equity Corporation? The State? by Maire Leadbeater

– 2010 CAFCA AGM Minutes; CAFCA/ABC Organiser Account 2009/10 by Bob Leonard; Organiser’s Report by Murray Horton

– Reviews by Jeremy Agar: No Ordinary Deal by Jane Kelsey; Crisis: One Central Bank Governor & The Global Economic Collapse by Alan Bollard; Man For All Seasons by David Grant; Inside Job A Film by Charles Ferguson; The Global Economic Crisis edited by Michel Chossudovsky and Andrew Gavin Marshall; Beyond The Profits System by Harry Shutt; World Investment Report 2010, UNCTAD;

The Carbon Challenge: New Zealand’s Emissions Trading Scheme by Geoff Bertram and Simon Terry; Cents and Sustainability by Michael H Smith.

– Obituaries by Murray Horton, Ted Howard, Don Franks and Catherine Delahunty

– 2010 Roger Award Finalists Named by Murray Horton

– Murray Horton Speaking Tour April 2011

– Thanks, Greg. Watchdog Webmaster Steps Down After More Than A Decade

QUOTES OF THE WEEK

Leave means Get out

Don’t you comprehend?

O Suleiman O Suleiman

You too must leave

Sitting in sitting in

Till the regime is gone

Revolution, revolution until victory

Revolution in all Egypt’s streets

Chants by two million Egyptians, Liberation Square, Feb. 10, 2011

"When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in society, they create for themselves, in the course of time, a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it." – Frederic Bastiat (1801-1850), French economist

"And the great owners, who must lose their land in an upheaval, the great owners with access to history, with eyes to read history and to know the great fact: when property accumulates in too few hands it is taken away. And that companion fact: when a majority of the people are hungry and cold they will take by force what they need. And the little screaming fact that sounds through all history: repression works only to strengthen and knit the repressed." – John Steinbeck – Grapes of Wrath

BEST ON THE WEB

NEW ZEALAND

John Minto: What Right Has John Key To Lecture The Poor http://auckland.scoop.co.nz/2011/02/john-minto-what-right-has-john-key-to-lecture-the-poor/

“Get Your SIS File Now – Don’t Let the SIS Hide Behind Fear-mongering Twaddle.” http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1102/S00132/get-your-sis-file-now.htm

John Minto: John Key Versus The Egyptian People http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL1102/S00106/to-the-front-john-key-versus-the-egyptian-people.htm

CTU President concerned at direction of US-New Zealand Council meeting in Christchurch http://union.org.nz/news/2011/ctu-president-concerned-direction-us-new-zealand-council-meeting-christchurch

Petroleum review highlights dangerous gaps in offshore regulation http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/AK1102/S00511/petroleum-review-finds-dangerous-gaps-in-offshore-regulation.htm

Each of the following five candidates in the NZ Botany by-election campaign for the new Botany MP had 4 minutes to explain who they are are why people should vote for them.

Caution as NZ-based Egyptians celebrate http://tvnz.co.nz/politics-news/caution-nz-based-egyptians-celebrate-4023984/video

Kiwi Egyptians elated with resignation – Video http://tinyurl.com/49l889t

Key rejects criticism over Mubarak silence http://www.3news.co.nz/Key-rejects-criticism-over-Mubaraksilence/tabid/419/articleID/198225/Default.aspx

CPAG: Children need security of income not cuts to services http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1102/S00114/children-need-security-of-income-not-cuts-to-services.htm

Ten Myths About Welfare – The politics behind the government’s welfare reform process by Gordon Campbell http://werewolf.co.nz/2011/02/ten-myths-about-welfare/

Latest Foreign Control Watchdog 125 – December 2010 http://www.converge.org.nz/watchdog/25/index25.htm

NZ Rights group urges Aquino to free political detainees http://www.philstar.com/Article.aspx?articleId=657673&publicationSubCategory

Sharn Riggs on public education and the 2011 election – Video of TEU national secretary Sharn Riggs talks to students at NZUSA’s January conference about public education and the 2011 general election http://tinyurl.com/48cobhc

Wealthy parents jump the queue http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10706467

Smith rules out separate ACC review http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10706517

Derek Cheng (NZH): Most boot camp youths reoffend http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10706286

No one should make a profit every time we flick a light switch http://socialistaotearoa.blogspot.com/2011/02/no-one-should-make-profit-every-time-we.html

NZEI: Government Confidence in National Standards Falters http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1102/S00133/government-confidence-in-national-standards-falters.htm

Hospitals, courts on partnerships list http://www.stuff.co.nz/sunday-star-times/news/4650875/Hospitals-courts-on-partnerships-list

Claire Trevett (NZH): Food parcel families made poor choices, says Key

Key ‘disconnected’ from average Kiwis – homeless coalition http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10706938

Poor choices? Or just poor? http://brianedwardsmedia.co.nz/2011/02/poor-choices-or-just-poor/

Families have fewer choices than the PM thinks http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1102/S00171/families-have-fewer-choices-than-the-pm-thinks.htm

NZH: Champion of Tuhoe brought history to life

NZH: Teacher groups urge rethink on standards

NZH: DHBs ignore surgery targets: report

NZ unions rally supporting Mexican workers’ rights http://www.epmu.org.nz/news/show/173251

Frustration and disappointment leads to withdrawal from National Standards Group http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1102/S00149/frustration-and-disappointment-leads-to-withdrawal-from-nsg.htm

60pct against sale of state-owned assets http://www.scoop.co.nz/multimedia/tv/politics/46585.html

Big differences in waiting times for elective surgery http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10707047

Hundreds of schools stalling on standards http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10707054

Drug prohibition not solving anything http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/opinion/perspective/4652528/Drug-prohibition-not-solving-anything

HONE HARAWIRA

Matt McCarten (HoS): Harawira, Turia may be last ones standing http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10705862

Tapu Misa: Maori Party never going to please all http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10706014

Committee to continue Harawira hearing next week http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10706099

Finlay MacDonald (SST): Harawira symbolises divide between haves, have-nots http://www.stuff.co.nz/sunday-star-times/opinion/4650727/Harawirasymbolises-divide-between-haves-have-nots

NZH: Street poll backs Harawira http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10705756

Yvonne Tahana and Simon Collins (NZH): Hone: the people’s verdict http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10705742

TVNZ: Marae Investigates interview with Hone Harawira (9:32) http://tvnz.co.nz/politics-news/marae-investigates-interview-hone-harawira-9-32-video-4024940

NZ WORK RIGHTS

Whitcoulls workers face uncertain future http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10707124

SFWU and PSA sleepover decision welcomed http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1102/S00140/sfwu-and-psa-sleepover-decision-welcomed.htm

Equal Pay Day – time for men to take up pay equity challenge http://www.voxy.co.nz/business/equal-pay-day-time-men-take-pay-equity-challenge/5/82298

TVNZ: Disability support workers win pay row

NZIER 90-day research fatally flawed, says union http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10706139

CTU: 90 day research fatally flawed 90 day research fatally flawed http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1102/S00113/90-day-research-fatally-flawed.htm

No Govt funding for EPMU in Pike River inquiry http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10706406

Gordon Campbell (Werewolf): Treasury Enters, Stage Right http://werewolf.co.nz/2011/02/identity-crisis-hits-the-big-screen/

NZPA: Petition calls for fishing jobs to stay in New Zealand

PSA: David Hall’s expert summing up of the case for public spending is now on youtube and on our website home page: It’s essential viewing for anyone interested in the debate about privatisation and asset sales – only 12min

Also available is a podcast of the video which can download for iPod or music player

http://www.psa.org.nz/Libraries/Video/DavidHall.sflb.ashx

NZ ECONOMY

Protesters want details of free-trade agreements http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/4653607/Protesters-want-details-of-free-trade-agreements

Leaks and lockouts as TPPA negotiations begin in Santiago http://tppwatch.org/2011/02/15/leaks-and-lockouts-santiago/

TPPA could turn the clock back http://jackyan.com/blog/2010/11/tppa-could-turn-the-clock-back/

Rise in Australian investment threshold has dangers http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1102/S00119/rise-in-australian-investment-threshold-has-dangers.htm

Critical Paper Links TPPA to Financial Instability, Challenges Negotiators to Release Draft Text for Further Analysis http://tppwatch.org/2011/02/14/critical-paper-links-tppa-to-financial-instability/

Bernard Hickey: Key’s economic challenge http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10705846

Greens: Government can make Community Max work http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1102/S00227/government-can-make-community-max-work.htm

CTU: Shocking process for major issues in Australia investment agreement http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1102/S00144/shocking-process-for-major-issues-in-oz-investment-agreement.htm

Government accounts show no need for asset sales http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1102/S00164/government-accounts-show-no-need-for-asset-sales.htm

Key’s Use of CER to Bypass Opposition to Foreign Investment Laws a Foretaste of a TPPA http://www.voxy.co.nz/business/key039s-use-cer-bypass-opposition-foreign-investment-laws-foretaste-tppa/5/82341

CULTURAL DISSENT

"Cuts" – by Manipulatrix, video by Diva Schematic

Musical revolutionary – Culture Column by Martin Smith: What makes someone a great artist? Surely one of the criteria has to be to what extent they have revolutionised their art form. On that measure alone the trumpeter Miles Davis must be regarded as one of the most innovative and creative musicians of the 20th century. http://www.socialistreview.org.uk/article.php?articlenumber=11562

FEATURES

It Ain’t Just Mubarak — 7 of the Worst Dictators the U.S. Is Backing to the Hilt http://www.alternet.org/story/149805/it_ain%27t_just_mubarak_–_7_of_the_worst_dictators_the_u.s._is_backing_to_the_hilt

Chomsky: Elections Today "Public Relations Extravaganzas." Video – Noam Chomsky Lecture University Of Tennessee. Chomsky discussed the United States’ support of dictatorships in Egypt, Tunisia, Georgia, Jordan and Colombia.

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article27381.htm

CLR James and the idea of an African revolution http://thememorybank.co.uk/2011/02/07/clr-james-and-the-idea-of-an-african-revolution/

West has ugly history of blocking Arab freedom http://www.greenleft.org.au/node/46701

WORLD ECONOMIC CRISIS

Inequality, the New Dynamic of History http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/cifamerica/2011/feb/06/egypt-tunisia

Too Much – an online weekly on excess and inequality http://www.toomuchonline.org/tmweekly.html

When income grows, who gains? – The interactive graphic from the US Economic Policy Institute showing which parts of the income spectrum in the United States gained when incomes rose is just a cracking thing to play with. For example, the graphic shows that all of the economic growth in America between 2002 and 2008 went to the richest 10% while income for the bottom 90% fell. http://www.stateofworkingamerica.org/pages/interactive/#/?start=1917&end=2008

LAND, LABOUR AND THE ENVIROMENT

Unions Can Address Jobs Crisis with Bold Action to Protect the Climate http://labornotes.org/2011/01/unions-can-address-jobs-crisis-bold-action-protect-climate

World Bank: Food prices at "dangerous levels": Global food prices have hit "dangerous levels" that could contribute to political instability, push millions of people into poverty and raise the cost of groceries, according to a new report from the World Bank. http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110215/ap_on_bi_ge/us_food_prices

Weather records tumble: our future is at stake http://www.greenleft.org.au/node/46693

ALGERIA

Algeria tense as workers plan march for democracy http://www.euronews.net/2011/02/12/algeria-tense-as-workers-plan-march-for-democracy/

Thousands defy police, protest anyway in Algeria: ‘Fear is gone,’ says government opponent; Internet providers reportedly blocked

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/41545522/ns/world_news-mideastn_africa/

Youth revolt shakes authoritarian order http://www.internationalviewpoint.org/spip.php?article1991

AUSTRALIA

Gov’t jails shipwrecked refugees http://www.greenleft.org.au/node/46689

BAHRAIN

At least 60 reported missing in Bahrain

Three killed as riot police storm Bahrain camp http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/three-killed-as-riot-police-storm-bahrain-camp-2217633.html

Protesters in Bahrain Step Up Pressure on Rulers http://www.aolnews.com/2011/02/16/protesters-in-bahrain-refuse-to-back-down/?icid=maing

CHILE

Chile to probe Allende’s death: The investigation is part of an investigation into hundreds of complaints of human rights abuses during Pinochet’s 1973-1990 rule. Beatriz Pedrals, a prosecutor in the appellate court in Santiago, said on Thursday that she had decided to investigate 726 deaths that had never previously been explored, including Allende’s.

http://english.aljazeera.net/news/americas/2011/01/2011127223137719819.html

COLOMBIA

Liliany Obando: Political Prisoner in Colombia http://upsidedownworld.org/main/colombia-archives-61/2899-liliany-obando-political-prisoner-in-colombia-

CUBA

The Revolutionary Rebellion in Egypt By Fidel Castro – We are not opposed to the people of Israel; we are opposed to the genocide of the Palestinian people and in favor of their right to an independent state. http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article27495.htm

ECUADOR

Ecuador Judge Orders Chevron to Pay $9 Billion: A judge in a tiny courtroom in the Ecuadorean Amazon ruled Monday that the oil giant Chevron was responsible for polluting remote tracts of Ecuadorean jungle and ordered the company to pay more than $9 billion in damages, one of the largest environmental awards ever. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/15/world/americas/15ecuador.html?_r=1

EGYPT

Egypt’s uprising: Not just a question of ‘transition’ http://links.org.au/node/2164

Egypt’s Cauldron of Revolt – It was striking workers that first inspired the Egyptian uprising. And they’re still at it. http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2011/02/16/egypt_s_cauldron_of_revolt?page=full

How the Egyptian People Toppled Mubarak http://www.socialistvoice.ca/?p=1426

Army takes over in Egypt and orders ban on trade union strikes after old regime deposed http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1356715/Egypt-protests-Army-takes-orders-ban-trade-union-strikes.html#ixzz1Dy3iHPfm

Workers demand dissolution of state-run trade union federation http://www.almasryalyoum.com/en/news/workers-demand-dissolution-state-run-trade-union-federation

Millions in Egypt celebrate as their dictator flees http://kiaoragaza.wordpress.com/2011/02/12/millions-in-egypt-celebrate-as-their-dictator-flees/

Middle East braces for more protest after Mubarak resigns http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/feb/11/middle-east-braces-mubarak-resignation

Al Jazeera English: Live Stream http://english.aljazeera.net/watch_now/

Egypt Remembers http://1000memories.com/egypt

People & Power – Egypt: Seeds of change

Independent workers’ union leader: `This revolution will never stop until Mubarak goes’; Suez workers rattle regime http://links.org.au/node/2155

Bread and Butter Revolution: Egypt’s Workers Mobilize for a New Future http://www.commondreams.org/view/2011/02/11-7

John Pilger: The Egyptian revolt is coming home – Western leaders should be quaking in their boots. http://www.newstatesman.com/international-politics/2011/02/pilger-egypt-square-western

WikiLeaks cables show close US relationship with Egyptian president: US embassy cable predicted Hosni Mubarak, if still alive in 2011, would run again for presidency ‘and, inevitably, win’

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/jan/28/wikileaks-cairo-cables-egypt-president

Striking Egyptian Workers Fuel the Uprising After 10 Years of Labor Organizing http://www.democracynow.org/2011/2/10/egyptian_uprising_surges_as_workers_join

People Power in Action – The Making of Egypt’s Revolution By ESAM AL-AMIN http://www.counterpunch.org/alamin02012011.html

FRANCE

France rocked by news of aid to Tunisia and Egypt: France trained Egyptian police officers in crowd control and sent tear gas to Tunis. And its foreign minister vacationed in Tunisia after the uprising, using the jet of a man linked to the ousted president.

http://articles.latimes.com/2011/feb/05/world/la-fg-france-scandal-20110205

HAITI

Washington Can’t Block Aristide’s Return or Deny Haiti’s Sovereignty http://tinyurl.com/4qo7zmj

Failed Reconstruction in Haiti Debated in Canada http://www.canadahaitiaction.ca/content/failed-reconstruction-haiti-debated-canada

IRAQ

Lawyers lead anti-government protest in Baghdad http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110210/ap_on_re_mi_ea/ml_iraq_protests

IRELAND

Sinn Fein’s Gerry Adams — `The people know the system doesn’t serve them’ http://links.org.au/node/2162

Another Prick in the Dail – Performed by ControlFreak

The Savage Eye – He Fixed The Road

PALESTINE

Tunisia Egypt Global Revolution Tribute – Gaza Celebrates – February 11

Egypt’s Revolution and Israel: "Bad for the Jews" By Ilan Pappe – What is at stake here is the pretense that Israel is a stable, civilized, western island in a rough sea of Islamic barbarism and Arab fanaticism. http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article27482.htm

UK

Rich Get Richer When Governments Tout Austerity: We just had a "rich-get-richer" recession. U.K. data suggest the gap between the wealthy and the poor has widened. We can give up any idea that it is going to close by itself. http://bloom.bg/dPi7Lg

UK consumer confidence suffers ‘astonishing collapse’ http://tinyurl.com/5vmumzg

12 year old youth club protestors threatened by anti-terror police http://righttowork.org.uk/2011/01/12-year-old-youth-club-protestors-threatened-by-anti-terror-police/

USA

A New American Workers Movement Has Begun: Thousands of workers demonstrated at the state capital in Madison, Wisconsin on Feb. 15 and 16 to protest plans by that state’s Republican Governor Scott Walker to take away the state workers’ union rights. http://www.solidarity-us.org/current/node/3159

U.S. Home Values Lost $798 Billion Last Quarter: The average home is down 27 percent from peak. This puts the total loss from the housing crash at an incredible $9.8 trillion. http://www.businessinsider.com/zillow-fourth-quarter-798-billion-2011-2

Sachs Says Democrats, GOP Both `Unrealistic’ on Budget

Amnesty International seeks review of case of the ‘Cuban Five’ http://tinyurl.com/4o8zz97

Obama’s Budget: Freezing the Poor By Amy Goodman – Americans are cold, hungry and unemployed. By increasing military spending, already greater than all of the world’s military budgets combined, we are only spreading that misery abroad. http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article27487.htm

VENEZUELA

OLDER ANNOUNCEMENTS

INVITATION TO PARTICIPATE IN BOLIVIA SOLIDARITY TOUR 2011

Greetings, The Latin American Forums of Melbourne and Sydney invite you and /or your organisation to participate in the first solidarity tour to Bolivia organised from Australia. Under the leadership of President Evo Morales, Bolivia is one of the countries in Latin America that is undertaking a radical progressive change. Bolivia is moving from the unjust and exploitative neo liberal capitalist state to a new form of participative community democracy, where the needs of the people are put before the drive for profits for the minority.

We invite you to participate in this solidarity tour to meet activists from community, environmental, indigenous groups and unions and see for yourself how this transformation is taking place. See attached leaflet for more detail. Please note the deadline for expressions of interest. Please pass on this information to your contacts. Please direct all inquiries to John or Fred (details below)

In Solidarity, John Cleary +61 407500839 or email johncleary271 Fred Fuentes +61 412 556 527 or fred.fuentes

MURRAY HORTON SPEAKING TOUR APRIL 2011

CAFCA is sending Murray Horton on an election year national speaking tour (something he last did in the 2002 election year). The title is New Zealand Not For Sale, providing an overview of foreign control (a hot topic at present, specifically the perennial issue of land sales); free trade deals, specifically the one with the US being negotiated now via the Trans Pacific Partnership; and what people can do about it. The aim is to raise grassroots awareness of these issues and CAFCA’s work in election year. The plan is for it to take place over two to three weeks in April, starting at the Roger Award event in Auckland at the beginning of that month, then heading south, getting home to Christchurch in Easter week.

Thus far, he has confirmed invitations for: Auckland, Whangarei, Hamilton, Thames, Whakatane, Napier, Whanganui, Palmerston North, Wellington, Blenheim, Nelson, Golden Bay and Dunedin. There are one or two other possibilities still being explored. Some venues may have to be done as separate one-off trips; just because they can’t be fitted into that time frame and they involve a long journey to get there (this is what Murray did during his 02 tour). It looks like a busy itinerary, so it may need to be done in more than one bite. If you would like to organise a meeting for Murray in your city or town or be otherwise involved with the tour, please contact CAFCA ASAP, by e-mail to cafca The itinerary will be worked out early in 2011 and publicity started shortly thereafter.

JOIN THE MAY DAY 2011 SOLIDARITY BRIGADE TO VENEZUELA! APRIL 25TH – MAY 4TH, 2011

The Australia-Venezuela Solidarity Network invites you to observe first-hand the inspiring Bolivarian revolution in Venezuela. The sweeping social changes being carried out by Venezuela’s “people’s power” movements are radically transforming life for the majority in that country – workers, women, Indigenous people, young people and all those who have suffered the injustices of poverty, exploitation and exclusion that accompany corporate globalisation. Along the way, this remarkable revolution is showing the rest of the world that a more rational, socially just and sustainable future is possible.

A special feature of the 2011 May Day brigade will be the opportunity it offers to observe the developing workers’ participation and workers’ control that is a vital part of the Venezuelan revolution, with visits to worker-run factories and cooperatives, and meetings with trade union and community management representatives in a variety of sectors and regions. The brigadistas will also observe Venezuela’s grassroots democracy in action, with visits to the social missions, communal councils and communes. They will meet and speak with grassroots activists in the free, high-quality public health and education services; sustainable development projects; community controlled media; and women’s and Indigenous organisations. Joining the huge May Day rally in Caracas on May 1st will be a another highlight.

This brigade is the 12th solidarity and study tour organised by the AVSN. Participants’ reports and photos from previous brigades are available at http://www.venezuelasolidarity.org

Registration and costs: The deadline for registering for the 2011 May Day solidarity brigade is February 28, 2011. Participants will need to book their own international airfares, but the AVSN can help with advice (please do not book without contacting us to confirm the dates). The AVSN will organise all accommodation, transport and English-Spanish translation for the brigade. People joining from Australia will need to budget for a total cost of $3500-4000, which will cover international return airfares (between $2200-2600 from Australia); all food, transport and accommodation (on a shared basis) during the brigade; and the brigade registration fee ($500 for workers or $300 for full-time students, unemployed and pensioners).

For more information about this or future brigades, please email brigades or phone Lisa Macdonald +61 413 031 108, Roberto Jorquera +61 425 182 994 or John Cleary +61 407 500 839.

RELEASE THE TEXT” CAMPAIGN DEMANDS END TO SECRECY IN TRADE TALKS

TPPWatch, a coalition of New Zealand unions, groups and individuals who oppose the proposed Trans Pacific Partnership free trade agreement has launched a “release the text” sign-on letter to Prime Minister John Key, via its webpage TPPWatch.org .

The trade talks are currently taking place in secret, despite many commentators across the political spectrum condemning the secrecy surrounding to the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement (TPPA) negotiations in Auckland last month.

“We are calling on the government to tell Kiwis what it is proposing to do in our name in these negotiations, and permit an open public debate on the proposed deal,” said TPPWatch spokesperson Andrew Campbell, the campaigns director for the finance workers union Finsec.

“This trade agreement could increase the cost of pharmaceuticals, limit government controls over tobacco sales and give new rights to foreign owners over land and strategic assets. We deserve to know what is going on,” said Campbell.

“The idea that binding and enforceable restrictions on future governments can be signed, sealed and delivered behind our backs is what happens in a dictatorship, not a democracy. If the government is so confident the deal is a good one then it should let us know what it is negotiating” said Campbell.

Campaigns are being launched across the TPPA countries to cast daylight on this deal, starting with release of the draft texts and country papers.

The sign on letter echoes broader demands from the peak union bodies http://union.org.nz/tpp in almost all the TPPA countries that all working texts are published after each round of negotiations, along with government position papers, on a neutral electronic forum that allows for a frank exchange of information and views.

“Three decades of free markets and free trade deals show that while big business tends to be the winner, workers and poor communities, who have no say in the process, pay the price. These secret deals have to stop.”

“We call on the government to secure agreement to basic rules for transparency during the next TPPA talks in Chile in mid-February,” said Campbell.

For further comment: Andrew Campbell 027-548-7006

UNION SPONSORED AUSTRALASIAN SEMINAR ON FREE TRADE AND INVESTMENT – SYDNEY MARCH 3; MELBOURNE MARCH 16

The ACTU and NZCTU in conjunction with AFTINET (the union-supported Australian Free Trade and Investment Network http://aftinet.org.au/cms/ ) have scheduled seminars in Sydney and Melbourne in March to inform union and community groups about the implications of the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) and to begin to organise campaigns. There will be speakers from both countries. Jane Kelsey is one of them, and I will be speaking at least at the Sydney event. The seminars are also open to community groups, and those with fewer than 6 paid staff are eligible for a “no fee” concession. Eligible community groups should note this on the form in the “billing address” section. Groups with concerns about the agreement or a wish to be better informed are encouraged to consider sending a representative to one of these seminars. Details are in the notice below, and a registration form is attached. Those wishing to attend do need to register.

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