"US President Trump, French President Macron, and British Prime Minister May accused the Syrian government of using chemical weapons in Douma on the basis of evidence and staged videos of the so-called “White Helmets”, who are the medical wing of the fascist Al-Nusra terrorists in Syria.
This article gives a 'good cop bad cop' analysis of Australia's two party history since the fall of the Whitlam Government. It looks at the evolution of economic theory and foreign involvement in wars over this period.
This article was originally published on Russia Today 16 August 2013 with the disclaimer, "The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT." Whilst on-line news services such as Russia Today Press TV are good sources from which to learn the truth, particularly about the conflict in Syria, which is contrary to what we are fed from the mainstream news media (msm), they unfortunately mirror the msm's political correctness in regard to immigrants and claimed asylum seekers. A substantial number of articles from such news services have reported on the plight of prospective immigrants attempting to enter countries such as Canada, the United States, Europe and Australia, without regard to the already dire economic circumstance of many native inhabitants of those countries, which can only be made worse by the arrival of more immigrants also seeking shelter in a tight housing market and employment where unemployment is already high. This article by Tony Gosling is a welcome change from Russia Today's usual political correctness on the immigration question. A similar viewpoint was recently put by Australian Labor Party MP Kelvin Thomson at the inaugural meeting of Victoria First on 1 December 2013.
Britain's shadow minister for borders and immigration, Labour's Chris Bryant, promised to take on the big corporations this week. But as his embargoed speech was leaked to big business, the nation watched his political resolve melt into nothing.
by Naomi Klein - 3 September 2013. Sub-headings : Harper's one idea, Extractivism, Climate change — Don't look away, Climate change — is happening now, Climate change — is at the heart of all our existing demands, Climate action = the left agenda, How to pay for it, Trade, First nations, Overburden.
Naomi Kein delivered the following speech on September 1, 2013 at the founding convention of UNIFOR, a new mega union created by the Canadian Autoworkers and the Canadian Energy and Paper Workers Union. Full text of the speech follows the video.
(This article has been created from a comment posted on candobetter because it contains important industrial relations news.) Update, 09:33AM, 18 Aug 2013: Irish MP Clare Daly has tweeted "Well done to Bob Carnegie & the CFMEU for their historic victory for trade unionists in Australia, ..."
The ABC reported at 1.20PM today, followed by Brisbane's Courier Mail and The Australian that "Contempt of Court" charges against Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) organiser Bob Carnegie were dismissed by Federal Court Magistrate in Brisbane.
In spite of the fact that 79% of the Queensland public oppose privatisation, 66% would support industrial action to stop the Bligh Government's $15 billion fire sale and many union members have expressed a willingness to strike, the Queensland unions have failed to take the only action that could possibly cause the Queensland Government to change its mind.
More than 1,300 Queensland Rail workship employees walked off the job in Ipswich, Rockhampton and Townsville in protest against plans to include the workshops in the Queensland Government's $15 billion public assets fire sale. The workshop employees had been led to believe that they at least would be spared from privatisation. However, on 8 December, Queensland Government announced that workshops were to be included after all.
The following has been adapted from a leaflet (see attached as pdf file, 48K) handed out at the protest against privatisation outside the Queensland state Labor Party conference on Sunday 7 June 2009.
In what sort of 'democracy' can the clear wishes of the public be repeatedly ignored as they have by the Queensland 'Labor' Government since 1998?
In recent months the Queensland branch of Electrical Trades Union (ETU) has rightly conducted publicity campaigns against policies of the Queensland Labor Government's which have been harmful to its members' interests. These include the corporatisation and privatisation of its power generation assets and the consequent neglect of vital infrastructure.
The following was sent to me on 5 June 2008 by the UK group Hands Off Iraqi Oil (www.handsoffiraqioil.org) which opposes the privatisation of Iraq’s oil assets.
Urgent appeal for action from Iraqi oil workers
Leader of the Iraqi Federation of Oil Unions Hassan Jumaa Awad has sent the following message urging action against the decision of the Iraqi Oil Minister to transfer 8 union activists - a move which has been defined as ‘a human rights crime’. This marks an escalation in repression against the Union which is a potent anti-occupation and anti-privatisation force in Iraq. This comes at a time when serious military, economic and political pressure is being exerted by occupying powers for the ratification of the Oil Law. More moves such as this can be expected and must therefore be resisted now.
US Labor Against War have written a model letter (see below). US and UK embassy details are below and a press release from Naftana, the UK support committee for the union in the UK is to follow soon. Please forward this email and contact your union branches and local anti-war groups to pass urgent motions of solidarity. Copies of emails sent to the embassy and of support for the union in the UK should be sent to: naftana[AT]naftana.org
From Hassan Jumaa Awad:
The Iraqi Oil Minister, Hussein Al-Shahirstani, has ordered the transfer of eight Oil Union activists. They used to work at the oil refineries in the south. This act reflects the minister’s anti-union policy, and lack of respect for unions and union activists in the oil sector. Those activists, through their hard work, are well known for fighting corruption and corrupt-ministry gangs in the oil sector.
They have been transferred to Baghdad Al-Dorah neighborhood (known for worsening security situation, and high level of sectarian killings). In the context of Iraqi security situation, such a transfer is rightfully regarded as human rights crime.
We call upon all people of good will in the world to take a stand to denounce these despicable and criminal acts by the Iraqi Oil Ministry against trade unions and their activists. The trade unions have been reestablished and revitalized through the hard work of union activists without any protection from the state, which keeps bragging about democracy. [The Maliki government, taking its lead from the U.S. Occupation Authority, continues to enforce the 1987 Saddam Hussein labor code that prohibits unions and bargaining for workers in the oil sector and all other public enterprises, which constitute 80% of all Iraqi jobs.]
This act is a clear evidence that the Iraqi state seeks to liquidate trade unions in this important Iraqi economic sector, oil. It is important to note that the south is the main source of oil in Iraq. The oil sector there employs more than 39,000 workers. The Iraqi state has no intention of allowing an Oil Trade Union in that sector because it represents a threat to its authority.
We call upon you from all parts of the world to stand with us, for the sake of labor and workers interests.
Hassan Juma Awad, President
Iraq Federation of Oil Unions
Draft letter by US Labor Against War
Iraqi Embassy in the UK:
- E-mail: lonemb[AT]iraqmofamail.net
- Telephone: +44 207 602 8456
- Fax: +44 207 371 1652
Iraqi Umbassy in the US:
- Post: Samir Sumaida’ie, Ambassador, Embassy of the Republic of Iraq, 1801
P Street, NW, Washington, DC 20036
- Phone: 202-483-7500
- Fax: 202-462-8813 // 202-462-5066
- Email: wasemb[AT]iraqmofa.net
- URL: www.iraqiembassy.us
- To assure that your message is received, please send it to both fax
numbers and in or attached to an email message.
- Please send a copy to USLAW, 1718 M Street NW, #153, Washington, DC 20036
We have been informed that Iraqi Oil Minister Hussein Al-Shahirstani has ordered the transfer of eight leaders and activists of the Iraq Federation of Oil Unions from their long-standing assignments at the South Oil Company in Basra to work in the Al-Dorah neighborhood of Baghdad, known for its worsening security situation and high level of sectarian killings. In doing so, the Minister knowingly exposes these trade unionists to a heightened risk of injury or even death. As such, this decision constitutes a grave violation of these workers’ human rights, as well as an assault on their labor rights and the rights of all those workers who they represent in their capacity as IFOU leaders.
This action escalates the Iraqi government’s continuing, repeated and blatant violations of internationally recognized labor rights as enshrined in the Conventions of the International Labour Organization of the United Nations, including those to which Iraq is a signatory. Iraq continues to enforce the dictatorship era labor codes that ban unions and collective bargaining for public sector and public enterprise employees in clear violation of ILO conventions. Iraq has failed to adopt a basic labor law (as called for by its own Constitution) to protect the rights of all workers to free association, to form unions of their own choosing, to negotiate the terms and conditions of their labor, and to strike when necessary in defense of their interests.
We soundly and most strongly condemn these gross violations of labor and human rights. No democracy can ever be established in Iraq unless and until its workers enjoy the full range of core labor rights recognized by the ILO. No democracy can ever be sustained in Iraq without its workers and their unions being free of government intervention in their internal affairs.
Iraq must completely erase all vestiges of its authoritarian and repressive past if it is to earn the respect of the world community. We demand that your government immediately rescind the transfer order for these workers, cease harassing unions and union activists, and that it recognize and respect the rights of all Iraqi workers to form unions of their own choosing, to negotiate the terms and conditions of their employment, and to act collectively in defense of their own interests.
We intend to monitor this situation closely to learn what actions you have taken to remedy these gross violations of labor and human rights.
Demonstrate at the Middle East Energy 2008 conference attended by Iraqi Oil Minister Dr Hussein al Shahristani
When? Tuesday 5th February 2008
Where? Royal Institute of International Affairs
10 St James's Square, London SW1Y 4LE (map: tinyurl.com/38gajj)
What time? From 8.30am
Called by the Hands Off Iraqi Oil campaign, www.handsoffiraqioil.org
Tell Iraq's Oil Minister:
No Oil for Occupation! - privatisation laws and contracts signed under occupation can have no validity. The vast majority of Iraqis want an immediate end to the military and economic occupation of their country. Most Iraqis also want their resources to stay in the public sector.
Trade Union Recognition Now! - stop using dictatorship laws to repress trade unionism
Dr Shahristani also refuses to recognise trade unions in Iraq. He has issued decrees for the national oil company not to negotiate with unions and ordered the shut-down of union offices.
Iraq's economic future and potential independence hangs in the balance. Iraqi oil accounts for approximately 90% of government revenue. Whoever control's Iraq's oil development has a controlling stake in the country's overall development. Since 2003, the British and US governments, and international oil companies have been pushing for an oil law which will hand over control of Iraq's oil to foreign companies.
In spite of massive military, political and economic pressure, from Britain and the US, opposition at every level of Iraqi society has meant that this law cannot be passed in its present form.
Despite mass opposition to the draft Oil Law, Oil Minister Dr Hussein al Shahristani has declared Iraq 'open for business' and invited oil companies to invest under existing Baath regime legislation.
Trade Union Recognition Now!
Dr Shahristani is also applying Saddam Hussein's anti-union laws, re-imposed by the occupation authorities and now kept on the law books by the Iraqi authorities. This is clearly unacceptable and ironic given Shahristani's imprisonment by the Ba'ath regime for over 10 years.
Iraq's trade unions have called the contracts pushed by the foreign companies and the Oil Law - Production Sharing Agreements - a 'red line'. PSAs will allow foreign companies to control the development and depletion of oil reserves for 25 years. Once signed, PSAs will not be re-negotiable. Iraq's sovereignty will be surrendered and its economic future effectively mortgaged to the agendas of oil companies.
End the military and economic occupation
We are asking the Minister of Oil to listen to the Iraqi people, particularly those who work in the oil sector, in their demands for a democratic process for deciding how and by whom Iraqi oil will be controlled.
We are calling for an immediate end to economic and military occupation by foreign interests.
No to PSAs, No Oil for Occupation!
All Troops and Occupation Institutions Out Now!
Union Recognition and Resource Democracy Now!