Australia

New Australian terrorism bill to facilitate targeted military killings

By Mike Head, 29 November 2014

On the pretext of combatting ISIS, the government’s laws can be used against anyone perceived as a political threat to the ruling establishment.

Australia: East-West toll road provides multi-billion dollar handout to corporate elite

By Will Morrow, 29 November 2014

The toll road has served as a convenient diversion in the Victorian election campaign to help suppress any debate on broader issues confronting the working class.

The Australian Greens and “human rights” imperialism

By James Cogan, 29 November 2014

At the recent G20 summit, the Greens singled out Chinese President Xi Jingping to present a protest letter on “human rights”—in line with Washington’s confrontational stance towards Beijing.

Workers denounce phony “jobs” promises ahead of state election

By our reporters, 28 November 2014

Unemployment in Broadmeadows and Dandenong, former centres of manufacturing and the car industry, has now reached depression-era levels.

Australia: Major parties prepare further austerity after Victorian state election

By Patrick Kelly, 28 November 2014

The official campaign has been a sham from start to finish.

Australian meat workers to face new attacks after JBS buys Primo Group

By Richard Phillips, 27 November 2014

JBS’s rapid expansion over the past nine years has been driven by an unrelenting assault on jobs, wages and conditions.

Two more Australian police killings in working-class areas

By Mike Head, 26 November 2014

Following two fatal police shootings within two days in the state of Queensland there is mounting evidence of an officially-sanctioned “shoot to kill” policy in working-class areas. The two killings brought the number to four in suburbs around Brisbane, the state capital, since late September. Another man was shot in the head at close range, but survived.

Split from right-wing party intensifies Australian government’s impasse

By Mike Head, 25 November 2014

Senator Lambie’s acrimonious departure from the Palmer United Party further fractures the Senate, where the government lacks a majority.

Australia: Rallies against ABC/SBS cuts promote Labor and Greens

By Oliver Campbell, 25 November 2014

The ABC announced more than 400 redundancies, along with significant changes to programming and news coverage.

SEP & IYSSE public meetings: Why have Australia’s parliamentary parties all signed up for war?

25 November 2014

The G20 Leaders Summit in Brisbane underscored just how embroiled Australia is in US-led wars and intrigues.

Australian mining services workers reject 25 percent pay cut

By Declan O’Malley and Mike Head, 22 November 2014

Hastings Deering’s ultimatum points to an intensification of the assault against jobs and conditions in the mining industry.

Australian government outlines major cuts to public broadcasters

By Oliver Campbell, 21 November 2014

The spending cuts go hand-in-hand with disciplining the ABC to ensure that it functions more closely as a propaganda arm of government.

Australia: Police violence in Queensland sparks outrage

By Declan O’Malley and Mike Head, 21 November 2014

Both incidents—a shooting and an assault—were brutal displays of force in working class suburbs of Brisbane.

Australian government embraces security pact with India

By Peter Symonds, 20 November 2014

The manoeuvres surrounding the Indian prime minister’s visit were likened to the “Great Game” of imperialist rivalry in Asia before World War I.

Australia’s housing bubble fuels a social disaster

By Mike Head, 20 November 2014

Working class households are increasingly priced out of buying a home, while thousands of properties lie vacant.

Canada’s Prime Minister spearheads attack on Russia at G-20 summit

By Roger Jordan, 19 November 2014

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper took the lead in the hostile reception accorded Russian President Vladimir Putin at last weekend’s G-20 summit.

Chinese president seeks to use trade to counter US “pivot”

By James Cogan, 18 November 2014

Xi’s speech in the Australian parliament yesterday was a carefully-crafted response to President Obama's bellicose reaffirmation of the “pivot” last Saturday.

Australian “Direct Action” climate plan to reward corporate polluters

By Barry Andrews, 18 November 2014

The scheme is even more of a travesty than the previous Labor government’s carbon tax regime, which also sought to boost business profits.

Obama’s speech in Australia: A threat of war against China

By James Cogan, 17 November 2014

Every word Obama spoke about the economic and political agenda of American imperialism was a lie.

Empty commitment by G20 to boost global growth

By Nick Beams, 17 November 2014

The G20 summit pledge on economic growth is belied both by the actions of the major powers and the text of the final communiqué itself.

Sham opposition on display at Brisbane G20 protests

By Mike Head, 17 November 2014

Far from challenging the G20 agenda, all of the officially-sanctioned protest groups sought, in one way or another, to appeal to the assembled leaders.

G20 summit held under police-state conditions

By Mike Head, 17 November 2014

The gulf between the leaders of world capitalism and the vast majority of the population was on graphic display during last weekend’s G20 summit in Brisbane, Australia’s third biggest city.

Stage set for confrontation, not cooperation, at G20

By Peter Symonds, 15 November 2014

Even before the summit began, Australian and British leaders targeted Russia—a sign of the bitter rivalry and wrangling that will dominate the talks.

Australia: Sham promises on jobs crisis in state election

By Patrick Kelly, 15 November 2014

Several working class areas in Victoria’s capital, Melbourne, now have depression-level unemployment rates.

Corporatist agenda of trade unions on display at G20 summit

By James Cogan, 14 November 2014

The unions’ statement to the G20 leaders is a grab-bag of issues that their privileged functionaries know will never be acted on.

Australia: Silence on G20 lockdown at “Peoples Summit” forum on civil liberties

By Mike Head, 14 November 2014

The event provided a revealing glimpse of what passes for “opposition” by the various Greens, liberals, anarchists and pseudo-left groups involved.

Brisbane, Australia in lockdown for G20 summit

By Mike Head, 13 November 2014

Australia’s third biggest city resembles a ghost town under police occupation.

Small audiences mark Remembrance Day in Australia

By James Cogan, 13 November 2014

The “Eleventh of the Eleventh” is considered of secondary importance by the Australian ruling elite in promoting patriotism.

Young people in Brisbane denounce “population control”

By a WSWS reporting team, 13 November 2014

Students and young workers condemned the spending of half a billion dollars on protecting government leaders who are responsible for wars and boosting corporate profits.

Australian prime minister demands apology from Russia on MH17

By James Cogan, 12 November 2014

Abbott once again exploited the deaths of 38 Australian citizens and residents in the crash.

Obama calls for more Australian, allied troops for Middle East war

By James Cogan, 11 November 2014

Planning is undoubtedly underway for bloody attacks to retake major Iraqi cities currently controlled by ISIS.

Australian mining fatalities on the rise

By Terry Cook, 10 November 2014

Amid the collapse of the mining boom, safety is being further eroded in one of the country’s most dangerous industries.

Australia: Victorian state government facing electoral defeat

By Patrick Kelly, 10 November 2014

A Liberal Party defeat in the November 29 ballot would mark the first one-term government in Victoria since 1955.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

8 November 2014

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Australia’s WWI Albany commemoration: All about the future, not the past

By Richard Phillips, 7 November 2014

Senior Japanese officials were honoured guests at the latest First World War centenary event.

Australian government warns of more police anti-terror raids

By Mike Head, 6 November 2014

“Get used to it” was the basic message delivered by the attorney general and the police counter-terrorism commander in a provocative performance on national television.

New warnings of war in Asia

By Peter Symonds, 5 November 2014

A report released this week draws details scenarios that could trigger a conflict in the East China Sea.

Heavy military presence at G20 summit in Australia

By Mike Head, 5 November 2014

On the pretext of protecting G20 leaders from terrorist threats, more than 2,000 military personnel and 6,000 police will be mobilised next week.

US blocks Australian participation in China-backed bank

By Nick Beams, 4 November 2014

Washington’s intervention, objecting to the bank on strategic grounds, points to the escalating military drive against China.

Australian law to protect spy operations triggers media debate

By Mike Head, 3 November 2014

Under the new “terrorism” laws, anyone who “discloses information” about an intelligence operation can be jailed for up to 10 years.

Australia: Wages slashed to boost corporate profits

By Terry Cook, 1 November 2014

The cost-cutting drive is intensifying amid the implosion of the mining boom, with export prices falling sharply and thousands of jobs being destroyed by mine closures.

Australian data retention bill means mass surveillance

By Mike Head, 31 October 2014

The “metadata” bill, which orders the storage of vast amounts of phone and on-line information, is directed against the entire population.

Australia shuts door to Ebola-hit countries

By Mike Head, 29 October 2014

The callous, short-sighted and nationalist decision has set a new benchmark for the response of governments around the world toward the disaster.

Australian state government unveils huge asset sales

By Barry Andrews, 29 October 2014

The Queensland government’s privatisation plan is in response to the end of the mining export boom in Australia and the collapse of its revenue base.

Australian student union’s phony “day of action”

By Oliver Campbell and Zac Hambides, 27 October 2014

The National Union of Students is promoting the illusion that education can be defended by pressuring Labor and the Greens to block the Abbott government’s budget cuts.

Australia expands military involvement in Middle East war

By Mike Head, 24 October 2014

Australian attacks in Iraq are assisting the US to pursue the real thrust of the war—a renewed drive by Washington to oust Syrian President Assad.

Poverty and inequality worsening in Australia

By Alan Leigh, 23 October 2014

Nearly 14 percent of the Australian population is living in poverty, according to a report by the Australian Council of Social Service.

Teaching war: Australian government targets primary school students

By Susan Allan, 22 October 2014

Australian authorities are distributing patriotic war propaganda among school children as part of the official World War I centenary commemorations.

Australia: Opposition Labor Party rubberstamps “Foreign Fighters Bill”

By Mike Head, 21 October 2014

The second of the Abbott government’s three “terrorism” bills is set to pass through parliament before the end of the month.

SEP meetings oppose Australian involvement in US war in the Middle East

By our reporters, 21 October 2014

The SEP held five public meetings to oppose the US-led military intervention in Iraq and Syria and the recent anti-terror raids in Australian cities.

Workers and youth discuss the war in Syria and Iraq

By our reporters, 21 October 2014

Australian imperialism: Political attack dog for US war drive

By Nick Beams, 20 October 2014

Australian Prime Minister Abbott’s declaration that he intended to “shirtfront” Russian President Putin at the forthcoming G20 summit is another expression of rising geo-political tensions.

Australian government refuses to send teams to fight Ebola

By Mike Head, 18 October 2014

While the Abbott government rushed to dispatch military forces to the Middle East, it has rejected calls to help fight the worsening health crisis in Africa.

A case study in hypocrisy

An Australian Labor leader feigns concern over terror laws

By Mike Head, 17 October 2014

Albanese’s interview prompted extensive media coverage, promoting the illusion that he was mounting a challenge to the Labor Party’s backing for the legislation.

Australia’s pseudo-left organisation complicit in US war for regime change in Syria

By Will Morrow, 17 October 2014

Socialist Alternative has yet to write a single article even acknowledging that US bombs have begun to rain down on Syria. As the old maxim states, silence is consent.

Reports expose Australian government’s data retention plans

By Mike Head, 16 October 2014

Fresh revelations show how the laws will expand the mass surveillance conducted by Australia’s spy agencies in partnership with the US.

Australian prime minister threatens to “shirtfront” Vladimir Putin

By James Cogan, 15 October 2014

For a G20 leader to threaten another with physical violence—even figuratively—indicates how far diplomatic norms have broken down.

Latest Australian “terrorist” witch-hunt targets Islamist meeting in Sydney

By Mike Head, 14 October 2014

In order to keep anti-Muslim agitation on the boil, Prime Minister Abbott teamed up with right-wing radio host Alan Jones to denounce a regular weekly lecture by an Islamist group.

Western Australian government announces further public sector job cuts

By Joe Lopez, 14 October 2014

With the reversal of the mining boom, both the state government and the Labor opposition agree that the working class must pay the price.

“Terrorist” sword seized in Australian police raids was plastic

By James Cogan, 13 October 2014

The revelation adds to already disturbing questions about the recent raids on 15 homes in five Sydney suburbs.

A bipartisan conspiracy

Australian imperialism and the Middle East war

Statement of the Socialist Equality Party (Australia)

13 October 2014

The justification for war is no less a lie than the claims in 2003 that the US invasion of Iraq was about “weapons of mass destruction.”

Australia’s “Camp Gallipoli”—a militarist extravaganza

By Richard Phillips, 11 October 2014

The government-backed Camp Gallipoli Foundation is taking Anzac glorification and militaristic propaganda to new levels.

Australian forces deployed in Iraq: Bipartisanship and the war drive

By Nick Beams, 11 October 2014

The illusion of “strength” surrounding the Abbott government as it commits troops to the US-led war is, above all, a product of the bipartisan support it is receiving.

Australian PM foreshadows ban on Islamist group

By Mike Head, 10 October 2014

Tony Abbott said Hizb ut-Tahrir could be proscribed under new laws against “promoting terrorism.”

Burqas banned in Australian parliament

By Richard Phillips, 10 October 2014

The ban was issued during a series of terror scares designed to justify the US war in Iraq and Syria and draconian new anti-terror legislation.

The Australian Greens and their phony anti-war posturing

By Mike Head and Peter Symonds, 9 October 2014

The Greens are positioning themselves as a political lightning rod for anti-war opposition.

Australia: 500 more public sector jobs to go in Tasmania

By Terry Cook, 7 October 2014

The state government withdrew its pay freeze and declared it will axe a further 500 jobs, bringing the total to 1,200 since the August budget.

Australia: Inala residents voice concerns about police shooting

By Mike Head and Ellen Blake, 6 October 2014

People in a Brisbane working class community have been shocked by a para-military siege that ended with a man being killed by heavily-armed police commandos.

Australia commits to combat operations in Middle East

By James Cogan, 4 October 2014

The Abbott government’s deployment of military forces has been facilitated by the bipartisan support of the Labor Party opposition.

Australia, US back sham election staged by Fiji military regime

By Frank Gaglioti, 4 October 2014

The major powers are seeking to forge stronger ties with Fiji as a means of undercutting China’s influence in the South Pacific.

Australia: Opposition Labor Party votes for deep budget cuts

By Mike Head, 3 October 2014

In parliament yesterday, Labor backed bills that will severely affect working class families, students and disabled workers.

Australian spy agencies given vast new powers

By Mike Head, 2 October 2014

Not a single vote was cast against the bill’s final reading in the House of Representatives yesterday.

American FBI instigates another Australian anti-terrorism raid

By Will Marshall and James Cogan, 1 October 2014

Homes were searched in five northern and western suburbs of Melbourne to seek evidence of “terrorism financing.”

Australia to effectively repudiate international refugee law

By Mike Head, 1 October 2014

New legislation will allow asylum seekers to be deported irrespective of Australia’s “non-refoulement obligations.”

Australian paramilitary police kill man in Brisbane siege

By Mike Head, 30 September 2014

Television news footage showed police commandos firing multiple shots at pointblank range at the man.

Top Australian firms avoid billions in tax

By Nick Beams, 30 September 2014

Social spending is being cut on the claim “there is no money” but corporate tax avoided in the past decade alone would cover the last two budget deficits.

Australian government celebrates WWI seizure of German colonies

By Richard Phillips, 27 September 2014

The military victory at Bita Paka in New Guinea opened the way for Australian imperialism’s takeover of Germany’s South Pacific territories.

Australia to offload refugees in Cambodia

By Mike Head, 27 September 2014

An unknown number of people, starting with those detained on Nauru, will be consigned to one of the poorest countries on earth.

Australia: Questions over police killing of young Muslim “terrorist”

By our correspondents, 26 September 2014

Workers and youth expressed concern and disbelief to the WSWS over the police shooting of the 18-year-old.

Job cuts mounting in Australia as mining slump intensifies

By Terry Cook, 26 September 2014

In the past week alone, coal mine closures in central Queensland have directly destroyed another 700 jobs.

Australian economy caught in global downdraft

By Nick Beams, 25 September 2014

After escaping the full effects of the international financial crisis in 2008, Australia is being severely impacted by the ongoing global breakdown.

Australian terrorist laws a cover for anti-democratic measures

By Mike Head, 25 September 2014

On the pretext of combatting “jihadists,” the Abbott government and the Labor opposition are pushing through parliament bills that extend the police-state framework erected over the past decade.

Australian “foreign fighter” bill extends police powers

By Mike Head, 25 September 2014

The bill’s seven schedules add many draconian features to the battery of “terrorist” legislation imposed since 2002.

Australian police kill teenager amid anti-Muslim “terrorism” hysteria

By James Cogan, 24 September 2014

The 18-year-old’s death is the first in the “anti-terrorism” operations taking place across Australia.

Australian terror raids provide pretext for police-state laws

By Mike Head, 22 September 2014

Australia’s largest-ever police-intelligence raids are being used to justify the introduction of further draconian provisions.

Australia: Youth and workers express disbelief over anti-terror raids

By our reporters, 22 September 2014

Socialist Equality Party (SEP) supporters spoke last weekend with workers, youth and students in Melbourne, Sydney and Newcastle about the unprecedented anti-terror raids conducted on over 15 homes in Sydney and Brisbane on September 17 by hundreds of heavily-armed police and Australian Security Intelligence Organisation officers.

Australian anti-terror raids part of US war drive

By Nick Beams, 20 September 2014

Within hours of Australia’s largest-ever anti-terror operation, US Secretary of State Kerry invoked the lurid news reports to justify the US war in Iraq and Syria.

Australian “beheading” plot based on dubious evidence

By James Cogan, 19 September 2014

Absent from the lurid media stories about terrorists in Australia’s suburbs is any objective examination of the facts.

Australian police carry out largest-ever “anti-terror” operation

By James Cogan, 18 September 2014

Hundreds of police and ASIO intelligence operatives have launched pre-dawn raids across Sydney and Brisbane.

Bipartisan unity on Australia’s “terror alert”

By Mike Head, 13 September 2014

Amid fear-mongering media coverage, both Labor and the Greens immediately backed the heightened alert declaration.

Political witch-hunt against Socialist Alternative on Australian campuses

By Will Morrow, 13 September 2014

The pseudo-left organisation Socialist Alternative is being targeted because of its opposition to the Israeli war against Gaza.

Australian government lifts “terror alert” level

By Mike Head, 12 September 2014

The “war on terror” is being revived in a bid to drum up support for the renewed war in Iraq and bolster the powers of the police-intelligence apparatus.

As budget impasse continues, scandals return to threaten Australian PM

By Mike Head, 10 September 2014

No “smoking guns” have yet been produced linking Abbott directly to either affair, but they involve major figures in his government.

Australian government signals purchase of Japanese submarines

By Peter Symonds, 10 September 2014

While the choice is being presented in economic terms, such a decision would have far-reaching geo-political ramifications.

Australian government poised to commit fighter jets to Iraq war

By Peter Symonds, 8 September 2014

Workers and youth in Australia oppose new Iraq war

By our reporters, 8 September 2014

Australia-India uranium deal strengthens economic and strategic ties

By Peter Symonds, 6 September 2014

The uranium pact removes an obstacle to closer military relations between Australia and India as part of broader US efforts to forge an anti-China bloc.

National income falls sharply in Australia

By Mike Head, 6 September 2014

Real national income per person declined for the second year in a row, driven by falling export prices.

Australia’s asylum-seeker policies claim another victim

By Terry Cook, 6 September 2014

The tragic death of Hamid Kehazaei, a young Iranian, is a direct outcome of Canberra’s brutal detention of refugees.

Australian mining tax deal to slash benefits for low-paid

By Mike Head, 5 September 2014

Following the mining tax repeal, similar deals are being canvassed to push through further highly unpopular big-ticket budget items.