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  • China a Partner Australia Can’t Live Without

    He Yun     |      September 16, 2009

    After the arrest of Rio Tinto executive Stern Hu On June 2, and the visit of World Uyghur Congress leader Rabya Kadeer to Australia, Sino-Australian relations experienced an ice-age chill. China responded by cancelling the scheduled senior ministerial visit to Australia, leaving Prime Minister Kevin Rudd describing the bilateral relationship as “full of challenges.”

  • Kenya’s Mau Forest Swindle

    Lynette Mwangi     |      September 16, 2009

    Kenya’s political headlines are monopolised by scandals, of which the Mau Forest swindle is perhaps the most scandalous.

    The Mau Forest complex saga has been an ongoing subject of political discussion over the past few years. Located in Western Kenya, it is the country’s largest forest, housing the nation’s main water tower.

    As of 2001, during former President Daniel Moi’s administration, approximately 40,000 hectares in the heart of the forest was excised from Kenyans by corrupt political leaders. This corruptly grabbed land was acquired by both past and present politicians. The land was then sold off to gullible buyers who either settled or subdivided their ‘rightful’ chunks of land.

  • Clinton’s Pyongyang Visit Rescue Mission: No Change to US Foreign Policy

    Andrew Wilson     |      September 16, 2009

    A month has already passed since former US President Bill Clinton, husband of the Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, flew to North Korea to broker the release of two American journalists.

    The apparent political objective of Clinton’s trip was to lay some groundwork for possible negotiations between the United States and North Korea, who recently indicated a desire to engage the Obama administration in direct talks. In the short term, there is no apparent change in relations between the rogue state and the US.

    The Obama administration has been eager to separate Clinton’s mission from their official policy regarding North Korea ever since his plane left for Pyongyang. Indeed, no government officials travelled with the former president and he chartered a private jet, instead of using a government plane.

  • Ricky Ponting the Nathan Rees of Cricket

    Louise Easson     |      September 16, 2009

    In The Art of War, Sun Tzu’s tells us that “without a general, the army is totally useless.”

    This old adage has never been more pertinent than when applied to the current NSW Labor government and Australian cricket team. They are both so weakly led.Whether in politics or cricket, without a good leader, you lose battles.  

  • Indefinite Deferrals: Planning to Nowhere

    stokes_hughes_anthony     |      September 16, 2009

    In 1998 the then Premier of NSW, Bob Carr, first conceived the NorthWest Rail Link. It was to be integrated into the existing CityRail network; connecting the city’s north, via the exisitng station at Epping, to the growth centre of the west with end of the line at Rouse Hill. 

    The project was due for completion by 2010.

    However after the 1998 state election, which Carr won, the NorthWest Rail Link plans never followed through.

    In March of 2008 former Premier Morris Iemma announced his major rail infrastructure plan to tackle the northwest. Construction was proposed of a metro-style subway, the NorthWest Metro; direct from St James in the city to Rouse Hill in the west.

    This project was due for completion in 2017.

  • Woman Bites Dog: Unequal Affairs in Australian Politics

    Mark Worley     |      September 14, 2009

    As one political sex scandal roared to life in New South Wales two weeks ago, another in Tasmania finally came to an end. 

  • History Vindicates Treatment of the Red Dragon

    Tim Matchett     |      September 14, 2009

    If my Chinese classmates are anything to go by, there is a lot of anger in China about the way the Australian media has reported the detention of Stern Hu.

    ‘Unfair’, ‘inaccurate’ and ‘irresponsible’ are common words in class discussions about the coverage here of Hu’s arrest. One student described the Australian reporting as “anti-Chinese racism”. What is missing in the debate, unfortunately, is a little bit of history.

  • Prevention Best Medicine for Aged Care

    Liam Kinkead     |      September 14, 2009

    Australia’s health system is under the microscope; and the new “yourHealth” reforms being rolled out by the Federal Government are in the public forum for debate.

  • A Tsunami of Silence

    Open Forum     |      September 14, 2009

    Hello everybody and welcome to your audition for the seven o’clock news.

    Here’s our first applicant; Omar from Sudan.

    So Omar, what’s your story?

    Hunger you say?

    No, I’m sorry, hunger is getting so very old, but please come back and try again if anything of greater news value should happen to you.

    So thank you for coming Omar, and of course good luck with your starving, HIV-positive, homeless, refugee family.

    NEXT!

  • Little Reporting for Queers

    Monong Rao     |      September 14, 2009

    Despite the fact that a January Galaxy poll commissioned by Australian Marriage Equality showed 60 percent of Australians think same-sex couples should be allowed to marry, a recent Senate Inquiry into same-sex marriage announced by the Rudd Government is doomed to fail due to little media coverage.

  • GFC Breeding Ground for Xenophobia

    Magdalena Rojas Infante     |      September 14, 2009

    Spanish newspaper El Mundo claims that one in every six members of the Parliament is either xenophobic or Europhobic.

    In the June 4-7 elections of the European Parliament the Social Democrats experienced a severe downfall, whilst extremist right-wing parties made their way into European Union politics. The Social Democrats lost in respect to the 2004 elections in all but four of the twenty seven member states of the EU; Malta, Romania, Greece and Sweden. 

  • Sinophobic One-Liners

    Wang Hui     |      September 14, 2009

    Since August, relatives and friends back in China have shown growing concerns about my family and I as we are now temporarily living in Sydney.

    Even an uncle who lives in a remote county in the under-developed Shaanxi Province asked me to go back to China earlier. “China-Australia relationship is very lousy now, so you guys won’t be safe there,” he told me over the phone.