SPRING HILL VOICE

The Australian website where spooks, media advisors, media monitors, partisan shills, sentiment miners, establishment media purloiners, fabricators, marketing and PR people start their day!

... There's no rationalisation for what you do and you are satan's little helpers. ... Bill Hicks

I feel sorry for Americans

STOP THE WARS! TAX THE RICH!

FREE THE REFUGEES!

Perception correction.

Bearing witness.

Unfashionable.

"If you have come here to help me, you are wasting your time ... but if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together." - Lilla Watson, aboriginal educator and activist, Brisbane

Peace.

Copyright 2003-present

 



* Other Things *

 

Visit to Wickham Point

Refugee Rights Action Network WA [16/9/14]:

RRANer Victoria's report on her trip to Darwin to meet with asylum seekers detained at the Wickham Point IDC. She spoke with multiple people over the course of several days.

...

Many families (including young children) witnessed the attempted suicide of a 17 year old last month and expressed distress their children had been exposed to the terribly traumatic event. One father detailed how his 5 year old had screamed with horror all night after watching this happen. No counselling or support has been offered to any of them as a result of this. The young girl is back in the center in a wheelchair. One would have thought a community placement could and should be expedited for this despairing young woman.

...

Out of respect for people’s privacy I will not disclose anyone’s personal medical details, but there are people with life threatening illnesses whose specialist appointments were cancelled by immigration, people needing surgery who were shifted back to Manus when that was initially scheduled, people with injuries from the assaults on Manus whose injuries have yet to be fully resolved, and people whose pre-existing illnesses were exacerbated by having their medications disposed of on arrival.

There are people who had broken bones, who complained to IHMS of pain from those injuries, who only got the xrays that showed they had such an injury many months later and now need much more extensive surgical intervention to get proper healing. People waiting for these medical treatments and appointments wait without a complete understanding of their medical conditions as IHMS does NOT give people their medical information as a matter of course and reports from specialist go back to IHMS..not to the actual patient.

Thus people remain confused about their health and frustrated because they cannot get clear answers to basic questions..such as has an appointment been made with the specialist and if so when is it? Instead the response to their queries is an impatient “People in Australia have to wait for these appointments too”.

...

 

... The sun shining down on these green fields of France
The warm wind blows gently and the red poppies dance
The trenches have vanished long under the plow
No gas, no barbed wire, no guns firing now
But here in this graveyard that's still no mans land
The countless white crosses in mute witness stand
To man's blind indifference to his fellow man
And a whole generation were butchered and damned ...

'No Man's Land (The Green Fields of France)', Eric Bogle [1976]

 

There Is No Future in War [CounterPunch - 16/9/14]

Obama becomes fourth US president in a row to go on TV and announce Iraq bombings [Independent - 16/9/14]


Doctors, Nurses, Medical Supplies?

Nope.

United States sends 3,000 military personnel to West Africa to pacify Ebola outbreak

Channel News Asia [16/9/14]:

US President Barack Obama will on Tuesday seek to "turn the tide" in the Ebola epidemic by ordering 3,000 US military personnel to West Africa and by launching a major healthcare training and hygiene programme.

Obama will travel to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta to meet US health chiefs and make the announcement.

It is meant to spur a global effort to fight an outbreak that has already killed 2,400 people, the White House said.

Dozens of Nusra fighters killed along Lebanon-Syria border

Daily Star [16/9/14]:

The Lebanese Army clashed with fighters from Nusra Front overnight, as the militants sought to cross into Lebanon after suffering heavy casualties in clashes with the Syrian army.

Al-Manar reported that the Syrian Army had killed dozens of Nusra Front fighters in an ambush in the Qalamoun border region of Flita, some 7 kilometers from the border with Lebanon, shortly before midnight.

Security sources told The Daily Star that some of the militants had then fled toward Lebanon, leading to clashes with the Lebanese Army, which repelled them.

The state-run National News Agency said a number of the militants were killed and wounded in the fighting with Lebanese soldiers.

The porous, undemarcated border region has been the scene of nearly continuous fighting in recent weeks, with the Lebanese Army working to expel Syrian rebels after they briefly took the town of Arsal at the beginning of August in clashes that killed dozens.

The militants, from the Nusra Front and ISIS, are still holding at least 22 Lebanese soldiers and policemen hostage.

"IS Jihadists" Down Syria Warplane over Stronghold

Naharnet [16/9/14]:

Jihadist fire downed a Syrian air force plane over the Islamic State stronghold of Raqa on Tuesday, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group said.

"IS fighters fired on a military aircraft which crashed," the Britain-based group said.

"It is the first aircraft shot down since the regime launched air strikes against the jihadists in July following their declaration of a caliphate in late June."

The Euphrates Valley city of Raqa is the sole provincial capital entirely out of government control.

Pakistan: More than 30 killed in air strikes, ground clashes

Naharnet [16/9/14]:

Pakistan's military said on Tuesday it killed 31 militants in air strikes and ground clashes along its restive border with Afghanistan, as three soldiers also died in the fighting.

The air strikes took place in the Tirah Valley of the Khyber tribal district, "killing 20 terrorists and destroying three of their hideouts and two ammunition dumps", according to a statement.

A security official told Agence France Presse that jet fighters bombed the Tordara Koki Khel area of the Khyber district, where the Taliban and another banned militant group, Lashkar-e-Islam, have taken refuge.

Militants launched a separate cross-border attack at a military post in the North Waziristan tribal district, officials said.

The army in June began a major offensive in North Waziristan aimed at clearing the area of Taliban and other insurgent groups.

A statement said troops repulsed the early morning attack at the Dandi Kuch post in the Spinwam area of the district.

"11 terrorists were killed and one apprehended. The dead bodies of three terrorists are with security forces," it said, adding three paramilitary troops were also killed.

Pakistan and Afghanistan frequently accuse each other of supporting cross-border attacks by militants.

The death tolls and identities of those killed could not be independently verified. Residents have said many civilians have died in air strikes.

Pakistan's army says it has killed more than a thousand militants and lost 86 soldiers since the start of the operation, though the numbers cannot be independently verified as journalists do not have regular access to the combat zone.

3 NATO service members killed in Kabul suicide attack

Khaama [16/9/14]:

At least three service members of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) were killed following a suicide attack in capital Kabul early Tuesday.

The alliance following a statement confirmed that a suicide bomber targeted the convoy of the coalition forces in Kabul airport.

The statement further added at least five service members were also injured following the attack.

It did not disclose further information regarding the identities of the deceased service members.

International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) generally do not disclose identities of the NATO soldiers killed in Afghanistan, saying, ” It is ISAF policy to defer casualty identification procedures to the relevant national authorities.”

At least 60 NATO service members including 43 US troops, 6 British troops and 11 soldiers from the other countries have been killed since the beginning of the year in Afghanistan.

Insider attack leaves NATO soldier dead in western Afghanistan [Khaama - 16/9/14]

Sinai bomb kills six Egypt policemen, ministry says

Al Arabiya [16/9/14]:

A roadside bomb in Egypt’s northern Sinai region killed six policemen on Tuesday, the interior ministry said.

The bomb exploded as their armored convoy passed through the road between North Sinai provincial capital el-Arish and the town of Rafah on the Gaza border, leaving two other policemen wounded.

Militants in Sinai have stepped up attacks on policemen and soldiers since then-army chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi toppled President Mohammad Mursi of the Muslim Brotherhood in July 2013.

Israeli forces abduct 22 Palestinians in overnight raids

Al Akhbar [16/9/14]:

Israeli occupation forces abducted 22 Palestinians in east Jerusalem in overnight home raids on suspicion of throwing stones and molotov cocktails, police said, as three months of protests showed no let-up.

It brought to 700 the number of arrests in occupied east Jerusalem since July, Israeli police spokeswoman Luba Samri said in a statement, including 50 this month alone.

Among those arrested were 13 minors, who police said were suspected of having thrown molotov cocktails at homes inside illegal settlements or at occupation forces in the past week.

Attacks on Palestinian protesters by occupation forces and settlers intensified across the West Bank, including in east Jerusalem, in July following the brutal murder of a Palestinian teenager by Israeli extremists.

...

Palestinian bagpipers join battle cry for Scottish independence [Guardian - 16/9/14]

Shelling kills six in Ukraine city

Belfast Telegraph [16/9/14]:

Shelling has killed six people and wounded 15 others in the Ukraine rebel stronghold of Donetsk, the city council said.

It is the worst reported violence since a ceasefire between Russian-backed rebels and Ukrainian troops took effect on September 5.

Fighting around the eastern city's government-held airport has left its northern neighbourhoods in the crossfire.

Two northern districts were shelled heavily on Sunday, leading to the casualties and damaging both homes and offices, the city council said.

Loud blasts could be heard from the direction of the airport all day yesterday, and gunfire intermittently rang out in the city centre in the afternoon.

The Ukrainian government blamed the militants for the civilian casualties.

"Neither today, nor yesterday, nor in the previous days did Ukrainian forces shell any residential areas," said Colonel Andriy Lysenko, spokesman for the Ukrainian national security and defence council.

Both the rebel and government sides have said they are rearming in case the fighting starts anew.

Ukraine and the West have repeatedly claimed that Russia is fuelling the separatist uprising with manpower, weapons and expertise, something that Moscow denies.

...

US envoy to Ukraine caught posting fake images on Twitter [RT - 16/9/14]

A proposed sale of Israeli weapons including drones to Ukraine has been blocked for fear of antagonizing Russia, Israel’s Channel Two television reported on Monday. ... [Al Arabiya - 15/9/14]

Young sailor hog-tied and raped at his navy 'farewell ceremony', court martial told

Brisbane Times [16/9/14]:

A young male sailor was allegedly hog-tied, raped, assaulted with a rubber chicken and smeared with Vegemite and deep heat on his buttocks and genitals by a group of able seamen as part of a "farewell ceremony" on his last night aboard a Royal Australian Navy frigate in 2011.

On Tuesday, four marine technicians appeared before a Defence Force Court Martial in Sydney and pleaded not guilty to a string of offences including sexual intercourse without consent, forceable confinement and assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

The alleged attacks by Able Seaman Marine Technicians Rohan Martin Angre, Mitchell Mark Summers, Michael Daniel Thompson and Jonathan Lee Walter took place aboard HMAS Newcastle while it was off the coast of Western Australia in August 2011.

Prosecutor Lieutenant Colonel David Jordan told the court the incidents occurred on the complainant's last night at sea on HMAS Newcastle after a 12-month stint.

The complainant, who will give evidence via video link, cannot be named for legal reasons.

Lieutenant Colonel Jordan said the complainant was expecting something to occur on his last night because of the "long-standing tradition of playing pranks" on a sailor's last night.

But rather than a "harmless" prank, he was allegedly stripped and his wrists and ankles tied together by cable ties in front of a crowd of other sailors in the recreation space.

His buttocks and genitals were smeared with a substance alleged to be a mix of Vegemite and deep heat.

Able Seaman Thompson allegedly pushed or tried to force a toy rubber chicken covered in the same substance into his mouth. An object was allegedly inserted into his anus, causing a burning pain, and he said he believed the object was the rubber chicken.

He was then lifted up and carried into the shower where Able Seaman Angre poured a dark liquid on the complainant's head, causing painful skin and eye irritation lasting two to three days.

At the start of the hearing, Able Seaman Angre pleaded guilty to a charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm over the shower incident.

Able seamen Summers, Thompson and Walter are charged with being knowingly concerned with Able Seaman Angre's assault using the liquid. Each have pleaded not guilty.

Lieutenant Colonel Jordan said the complainant told a friend about the alleged assaults but did not make an official complaint at the time.

He said the four accused would have known the complainant was not consenting because he called out "what the f---", "let me go" and "cut it out" during the assault.

An investigation was commenced in November 2013 after the complainant made comments to another friend, who made a report.

A panel of seven male navy personnel will decide the verdicts on each of the charges.

The defence is yet to open its case.

US Navy Continues to Persecute Nurse Who Refused to Force-feed Guantanamo Hunger Strikers [Kevin Gosztola - 16/9/14]

Dead mum, ill baby not suspicious: police

Nine MSN [16/9/14]:

The grisly discovery of a dead mother and her critically ill baby in the NSW Illawarra region is not suspicious, police say.

After a call from a concerned member of the public, police found the woman's body and her eight-month-old baby boy at 2pm on Tuesday at a home in Woonona, a northern suburb of Wollongong.

The baby was initially said to be critically ill.

However police said on Tuesday night the baby boy was in Wollongong Hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

Detectives have not found any suspicious circumstances at this stage.

Pair admit to $7m insider trading scheme

Nine MSN [16/9/14]:

A banker told his partner in an insider trading scheme to keep his spending under wraps, despite buying a property from a reality TV show and reaping millions from a secret second account.

Former National Australia Bank (NAB) employee Lukas James Kamay netted more than $7 million in profits after receiving market-sensitive data from Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) worker Christopher Russell Hill before its official release.

Kamay, 26, and Hill, 25, pleaded guilty to insider trading in the Melbourne Magistrates Court on Tuesday.

Documents tendered to the court say the pair, who studied together at Monash University, devised the scheme after being reunited at a mutual friend's birthday party in 2013.

Kamay and Hill had aimed to make $200,000 from foreign exchange derivative trades in a 12-month period and then quit, splitting the profits equally after tax.

They were on their way to reaching their goal and, without his partner's knowledge, Kamay also ran a second trading account, the documents show, which reaped most of the more than $7 million in profits.

In April this year, Kamay agreed to buy a property featured on TV show The Block for $2.375 million.

Two weeks later, Kamay told Hill to be careful with how he spent his money and not to make any big purchases.

"I've been very conservative," Kamay said in a conversation covertly recorded by the Australian Federal Police.

"I haven't told anyone at work, no one, not even my girlfriend knows about this. Have you kept it like that way as well?"

During the conversation, Hill told Kamay that no one at the ABS would suspect him because it was part of his job to look at the data.

The two communicated through prepaid mobile phones in false names, after Hill obtained personal details from his tenant and Kamay did the same to a man applying for a job at NAB.

The documents show the windfalls reaped by Kamay's trades grew larger as time went on, and he deliberately traded to make losses in an effort to avoid scrutiny.

Kamay, of Clifton Hill, pleaded guilty to six insider trading charges but pleaded not guilty to a charge of dealing with the proceeds of crime.

Hill, of Belconnen in the ACT, pleaded guilty to six offences, including insider trading and abuse of a Commonwealth office.

Both men have been granted bail to face a directions hearing in the Victorian Supreme Court on October 1.

Gold Coast City Council says muslims not welcome: Reject mosque application based on noisy protestations of a minority group of uneducated, violent Murdoch readers

Prove it Brisbane Times you bigoted sacks of shit ---> ... Fairfax Media understands 97 per cent of residents in the local area opposed the application for the mosque in the Currumbin industrial estate. ...

Brisbane Times [16/9/14]:

A controversial mosque planned for the Gold Coast has been knocked back by the city's council.

At a full meeting of Gold Coast City Council on Tuesday, proposal for the mosque was rejected 10 votes to five.

The council had been asked to vote on a "material change of use" to allow the Salsabil Charitable Organisation to convert a warehouse in an industrial estate at Currumbin Waters into an Islamic place of worship.

The plans for the 4768 square metre site triggered several protests from residents, some of whom waved anti-Islamic signs outside the council chambers, throughout the approvals process.

A small number of anti-Islamic protesters gathered outside council chambers again on Tuesday.

About 10 police officers were also there, after councillors Cameron Caldwell and William Owen-Jones received death threats for their support of the development.

Another councillor, Chris Robbins, claimed she was threatened with gang rape and death from people opposed to the development, via social media.

Despite that, Cr Robbins led the call to reject the application, saying council had let down the community by not fully assessing the impact the development would have on them.

About 30 opponents of the planned mosque cheered and booed from the council chamber's public gallery, as councillors from both sides of the debate expressed concern.

Some councillors said the decision to refuse the application would result in a court appeal which could be costly for ratepayers.

...

Governments pressure Google for more user data

IT News [16/9/14]:

Governments around the world are applying increasing pressure on Google to hand over user information for criminal investigations, the search giant revealed today in its latest transparency report.

Its tenth report covers the six months from January to June 2014, in which Google said it experienced a 15 percent increase in worldwide requests for user data.

Over the past five years, government requests for user information have grown 150 percent, Google reported.

Globally, Google received 31,678 requests for user data from governments in the six months to June 2014, compared to 27,477 in the six months prior, and 12,539 in Google's first transparency report for the six months to December 2009.

In Australia specifically, government requests for user data were down slightly from the previous six month reporting period, with 752 compared to 780 requests for user data received to June 2014.

It is the first time requests for Australian user data has dipped since Google reported its first batch of 150 government user information requests for July to December 2009.

The increase in government demands has come despite ongoing revelations about the extent of government surveillance - as detailed by the likes of former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden - Google law enforcement and information security legal director Richard Salgado said in a blog post.

"Despite these revelations, we have seen some countries expand their surveillance authorities in an attempt to reach service providers outside their borders. Others are considering similar measures," he wrote.

"The efforts of the US Department of Justice and other countries to improve diplomatic cooperation will help reduce the perceived need for these laws, but much more remains to be done."

New Zealand Launched Mass Surveillance Project While Publicly Denying It [The Intercept - 15/9/14]

The Moment of Truth: Auckland Town Hall meeting to publicize, New Zealand's spying on own citizens [VIDEO - 15/9/14]

Why Aboriginal Australia should reject constitutional recognition

Crikey [11/7/12]:

Chris Graham

... Firstly, Aboriginal people don’t expect Australia will wake up to itself and do the right thing. They’ve become very good at setting their expectations very low in order to avoid disappointment.

Aboriginal people understand very well that the chances of an Australian Parliament in this day and age leading the charge to dilute its powers to discriminate is zero. If anything, this Parliament is heading in the opposite direction. (The recent extension of the Northern Territory intervention laws for another 10 years is a case in point. So too is the asylum seeker debate.)

Knocking out change to the race powers leaves only a new preamble, which is akin to throwing a drowning man a brick, and which is view by Aboriginal people as a “warm and fuzzy” designed to ease white guilt and boost international tourism. To borrow a phrase from renowned Aboriginal artist Richard Bell, it is “a white thing”.

Secondly, Aboriginal people want to talk about other stuff, like treaty, sovereignty and land rights. So why the lack of interest? Bitter personal experience with the gratuitous exploitation of symbolism by cynical white politicians.

Exhibit A is Kevin Rudd and his 2008 apology. When the apology was delivered, Aboriginal people united in celebration. Many genuinely believed that as a nation, we’d entered a new era in black/white relations. And then Rudd’s Labor got back on with the business of eroding the rights of the nation’s most disadvantaged.

The NT intervention continued unchecked, and was recently extended for another 10 years. Rudd’s promise in opposition to provide reparations and a comprehensive response to the Bringing Them Home report was abandoned. He also broke his promise to move Australia Day to a more inclusive date.

At virtually every public event at which Rudd now appears, he’s introduced as the former prime minister who delivered the “apology”. He’s been milking it for all its worth for four years. He even had the gall to present the Pope with a bound copy of the apology, despite the fact that by then, the overwhelming majority of Aboriginal people had begun to reject it.

For her part, Gillard has been no better. She used her first Close the Gap report card to Parliament in 2011 to blame Aboriginal people for their poverty.

And it was her office earlier this year which engineered the debacle at the 40th anniversary celebrations of the Tent Embassy (where, it’s worth remembering, Aboriginal people gathered not to discuss constitutional reform, but treaty, sovereignty and land rights).

My personal view is that Aboriginal people would be well advised to join with Brandis and the other wreckers, and knock the notion of constitutional reform on the head.

While I acknowledge that symbolism is important, it is only worth embracing when it’s in the hands of politicians who will use it responsibly, and back it up with practical measures and outcomes.

Otherwise, it is simply another mechanism for Australian leaders to strut the world stage and try and portray this nation in a light that it does not deserve.

...

Australia ignores UN call for action on statelessness

Refugee Council of Australia Media Release [16/9/14]:

As the world commemorates the 60th anniversary of the 1954 Statelessness Convention, stateless people
in Australia have little to celebrate, the Refugee Council of Australia (RCOA) said today.

RCOA chief executive officer Paul Power said that despite Australia being a signatory to both the 1954 and 1961 Statelessness Conventions, the lack of a statutory statelessness determination procedure coupled with no viable resolution for stateless people has meant that hundreds of stateless people in detention and in the community face an uncertain future.

“We know that being stateless leaves people feeling worthless, unable to participate fully in society and struggling with identity. Being stateless can also mean that making a protection claim is even more difficult, as nationality assessments are vital in gauging a person’s fear of persecution in a certain country.

“As at 2013, UNHCR has identified over 3.3 million stateless people worldwide but, given the poor data collection and lack of suitable identification processes in many countries, it is estimated that the real number of stateless people globally is more like 10 million.”

As part of its global campaign to eradicate statelessness over the next decade, UNHCR is hosting the First Global Forum on Statelessness this week (15-17 September) in The Hague.

More than 300 stateless people, government representatives, academics, international organisations and NGOs have gathered to explore the challenges for stateless people and share good practices and policies.

The UN High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres has called for decisive action on the issue of stateless, emphasising that “these protracted statelessness situations are not a problem to be addressed at some future date. Solutions are needed now, and I call on all States to make a firm commitment to ending statelessness within the next decade.”

In December 2011, the Australian Government pledged to UNHCR and the international community to “better identify stateless persons and assess their claims”. But Mr Power said progress had not been made on this pledge.

“Indeed, Australia's approach could be seen to be regressive and deteriorating quickly. Australia’s approach over the past few years has been to place stateless people who do not have refugee or complementary protection obligations on to ‘Return Pending Bridging Visas’.

“Since stateless people have no country to return to, this visa not only leaves them in a state of limbo but the name given to the visa is a mockery of their predicament.

“As at 31 August 2014, 387 stateless people remain in closed immigration detention, including 130 children. The lack of clarity related to nationality for babies born in Australia or Australia-funded offshore detention centres to stateless parents means that these babies and their families face long and indefinite periods of time in detention.

“Countries like Kyrgyzstan and Hungary have changed their laws and procedures to address large numbers of stateless people living in their borders. Australia has far fewer stateless people and yet has not made any significant steps towards better identifying and resolving the status of stateless people here.

“As a signatory to the Statelessness Conventions, the Government has obligations to find a resolution for stateless people in Australia. The international momentum created at the First Global Forum on Statelessness towards addressing and resolving stateless worldwide provides Australia with an excellent opportunity to rectify the deficiencies in its processes.”

Hypocrites -----> Historic milestone for Australian Citizenship Day 2014 [Joint Media Release Minister for Immigration and Border Protection and Assistant Minister for Immigration and Border Protection -16/9/14]

Five years after claims of scathing human rights abuses ended the detention of immigrant families at the T. Don Hutto Residential Center, federal officials this week announced a plan to build another detention center in South Texas to hold immigrant parents and children.

If the deal goes through, which officials in Frio County say is more than likely, the new site 70 miles southwest of San Antonio would be run by the same private prison company that ran the old facility just northeast of Austin: Corrections Corporation of America. ... [Daily Interlake - 14/9/14]

Archbishop calls for increased refugee intake

Anglican News [15/9/14]:

The Anglican Archbishop of Sydney has written to Prime Minister Tony Abbott, asking for Australia’s humanitarian intake to be lifted to 20,000.

Dr Glenn Davies again expressed concern about the wave of persecution in Iraq and Syria, saying Christians and other religious minorities have been “persecuted, threatened, dispossessed and in many cases, killed for their beliefs.

Those who have survived are in transit camps with few possessions and little hope. Some are not yet safe as it is reported that there are 'hidden cells' of terrorists who may be activated and pose a further threat to Christians who have fled the north.”

The Archbishop thanked the government for reserving 4,400 places in the refugee intake program for the victims of the ongoing violence in the Middle East.

“Although l applaud the inclusion of the persecuted within the quota of Australia's humanitarian intake of 13,700, I respectfully request that you increase this quota even further, as the Howard government did when boat arrivals became negligible. Given that boat arrivals, under your government, have slowed considerably, a level of 20,000 would not be unsustainable and would reflect a country whose values include compassion for the vulnerable and dispossessed,” Dr Davies said.

The Archbishop has made several statements since the start of the Iraq crisis, calling on the government to ensure the safety of those fleeing, and urging Sydney Anglicans to urgent prayer and material support through the Archbishop’s Anglican Aid emergency appeal.

“Churches all over Australia have been united in urgent prayer for our brothers and sisters in Christ as well as other persecuted minority groups, against whom these atrocities are being committed,” Dr Davies told the Prime Minister.

“Anglicans in our diocese, which is the largest in Australia, have responded generously to an appeal for victims of this persecution and my office has received contact from many members of our churches who are very concerned at the plight of these people and asylum seekers generally.”

“As a Christian leader, I appeal to you to show hospitality and generosity to those who have suffered more than we can imagine,” the Archbishop said.

UN refugee agency slams Cambodia-Australia deal: Warns of dangerous precedent should asylum seekers be resettled in the kingdom [UCA News - 15/9/14]

Where were you on September 1 Melissa Parke?

No-one is buying your cynical, shifty stance.

Greens Media Release [1/9/14]:

Deputy Greens Leader Adam Bandt MP condemned the Government’s failure to allow a House debate on sending forces to Iraq.

“The government has shut out any debate in the House of Representatives on Australian military involvement in Iraq," said Mr Bandt.

"All the House of Representatives gets is a non-binding discussion after the decision to join the war has been made. It's a sham."

“Prime Minster Tony Abbott and Labor are in lockstep, but the Greens will stand up for the right of Australians to decide whether to get involved in another war in Iraq,” said Mr Bandt.

Sydney Morning Herald [1/9/14]:

10:19am: Labor is siding with Johnston.

Labor's Defence spokesman Stephen Conroy says Labor is not supporting the Greens move to suspend standing order.

Conroy describes the Greens move as a ''stunt to score cheap political points".

"The role of the Parliament in approving military action is fraught with danger," he tells the Senate.

...

11:21am: While Liberal MP Kelly O'Dwyer was speaking in support of the government's actions in Iraq, Greens deputy leader Adam Bandt interrupted with the potential suspension of standing orders.

He gets zero support from any other MPs.

A vote is not required as everyone already knows the result.

11:26am: But oh, this isn't the end of the SSOs.

Independent Andrew Wilkie is now standing to try and suspend standing orders.

He too wants to debate whether Australian forces should be deployed to Iraq.

And "defer all other business before the House until the conclusion of the debate".

This is very, very similar to the language just used by Adam Bandt.

As with Bandt's move, Wilkie gets no other takers.

...

United States expand bombing campaign to Baghdad

ABC News [15/9/14]:

There was a U.S. airstrike southwest of Baghdad today, a new area of operations for U.S. fighter aircraft, ABC News has learned.

But this isn't an indicator of expanded airstrikes in Iraq, a U.S. official told ABC News.

A request was received from the Iraqis to provide air support for an Iraqi unit that was engaged in a firefight with fighters with the Islamic militant group ISIS, the official said.

An aircraft was re-directed and conducted a strike to support the Iraqi ground troops, the official said.

The U.S. Central Command, or CentComm, is expected to detail the attack later today.

Bombings kill 8 people in Iraq

Ahram [15/9/14]:

Iraqi officials say two separate bombings have killed eight people in and around the capital.

Police officials say the first attack happened Monday afternoon when a roadside bomb explosion hit a patrol of anti-militant fighters, known as Sahwa, in the town of Madain, just south of Baghdad, killing three fighters and one civilian.

The Sahwa are made up of Sunni militiamen who joined U.S. troops in the fight against al-Qaida during the height of Iraq's insurgency in 2007 and 2008.

In a later attack, police say a sticky bomb attached to a minibus exploded in Baghdad's southern district of Abu Dashir, killing four passengers and wounding six people.

Medical officials confirmed the causalities. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity as they were not authorized to release information.

Does this man look like ISIS? ---> Iraqi government bombs houses, Dhuluiya [VIDEO - 15/9/14]

Aftermath of shelling of houses, Fallujah [VIDEO - 15/9/14]

The army bombarded the city with rockets [VIDEO - 15/9/14]

Central African Republic: Ban welcomes official deployment of UN mission

UN Media Release [15/9/14]:

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today welcomed the official transfer of authority from the African-led International Support Mission to the Central African Republic (MISCA) to the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA).

On the successful completion of MISCA’s mandate, Mr. Ban hailed the efforts made by the Mission, which has saved and protected many lives, alongside the French Sangaris forces and the European Union Force in the Central African Republic.

In a statement issued in New York, ahead of a ceremony in the Central African Republic capital, Bangui, which included Hervé Ladsous, Under-Secretary-General for UN Peacekeeping Operations, and Babacar Gaye, the head of the new Mission, the UN chief expressed his great appreciation of the “exemplary collaboration” between the United Nations and the African Union (AU) that enabled a seamless transfer of authority, including the re-hatting of as many MISCA contingents as possible, in accordance with UN standards.

Mr. Ban also underlined the important role of the international mediation and assistance of international partners, including the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS), in the process of restoring the rule of law and ensuring protection of human rights in the country.

While welcoming the newly established mission, Mr. Ban expressed his deep concerns about the ongoing violence in the country. Amid security, humanitarian, human rights, and political crisis in the CAR, he reiterated his call for all the parties to immediately put an end to attacks against civilians, in accordance with the cessation of hostilities agreement. The Secretary-General also stressed the importance of the inclusive political process that needs to be sustained by all Central African stakeholders in order to ensure the successful completion of the country’s transition.

The newly established Mission will prioritize the protection of civilians and facilitation of political process, including implementation of provisions of the Agreement on Cessation of Hostilities, and setting up a mechanism to investigate violations. According to the latest UN figures, MINUSCA’s presence stands at some 6,500 troops, 1,000 police and a complement of civilian staff that are progressively deploying throughout the country.

The authorization for the full deployment of the UN Mission was given by the Security Council on 10 April 2014, and the Force Commander of MINUSCA, Major General Martin Chomu Tumenta, was appointed by Secretary General later in July.

“We are going to have on the ground all the comparative advantages of a UN peacekeeping mission,” said Mr. Gaye in an interview with UN Radio, noting specifically predictable and sustainable financial resources for the Mission, years of experience in the field of peacekeeping, and the comprehensive approach that the United Nations has been implementing, which is now recognized as an area where it is ahead of regional organizations.

At the same time, he said, the ongoing commitment and support from regional organizations, including ECCAS and the AU would remain vital. Indeed, “this is not going to be a success of [only] the United Nations. It is going to be the success of the entire international community” to help CAR stand on its own feet and benefit from a sustainable stabilization.

The CAR has been embroiled in fighting, fuelled by what are believed to inter-communal retaliatory attacks between anti-balaka and Séléka rebels, after the latter were ousted from power in January 2014. An estimated 2.2 million people are believed to be in need of humanitarian aid as a result.

Ukraine hosts military drills led by US and joined by NATO

RT [15/9/14]:

A total of 1,300 troops from 15 nations, either active NATO members or would-be members, have come together for a military exercise in western Ukraine – even as the fragile truce in the east of the country barely holds.

The exercise, code-named “Rapid Trident” has been an annual event since 2006, and has been organized by the Germany-based US European Command (EUCOM). It was initially planned to have this year’s drills in mid-July, but they were postponed because of heavy fighting in eastern Ukraine.

“This year’s exercise will involve command post exercises, patrolling, counter-IED training and a field training exercise,” the EUCOM Public Affairs Office said in a statement. It adds that “no live fire exercises” have been scheduled for the drills.

The exercise is being conducted near Yavoriv, 60 kilometers from the city of Lvov in north-western Ukraine, at the International Peacekeeping and Security Center (IPSC).

The US earlier pledged to send 200 troops to take part in the exercise.

Earlier in September, Ukrainian and American naval forces held joint maritime drills in the northwestern part of the Black Sea.

The Russian Black Sea fleet simultaneously tested its new-generation Bastion coastal defense system, saying the test was pre-scheduled and was not a response to the US-Ukraine drills in the Black Sea.

Moscow has been particularly sensitive about NATO’s increased activity in Eastern Europe and has been thinking of reviewing its military doctrine due to this new situation.

Eastern Ukraine has meanwhile seen the fragile ceasefire there being put to a serious test on Sunday, when the city of Donetsk witnessed some heavy shelling.

A crew from RT’s video agency Ruptly working on the outskirts of Donetsk witnessed an episode when a family was forced to run for shelter to escape shelling.

A group of OSCE observers also came under fire near Donetsk the same day.

Ukrainian troops and the anti-government forces have blamed each other for the ceasefire violations.

Say ‘No’ to War and Media Propaganda

Common Dreams [12/9/14]:

Mairead Maguire

While the United States, United Kingdom and NATO are pushing for war with Russia, it behoves people and their governments around the world to take a clear stand for peace and against violence and war, no matter where it comes from.

We are at a dangerous point in our history of the human family and it would be the greatest of tragedies for ourselves and our children if we simply allowed the war profiteers to take us into a third world war, resulting in the death of untold millions of people.

...

Karakia for whale that washed up in Wellington

NZ Herald [16/9/14]:

A dead curvier's beaked whale has washed up on a Porirua beach.

The nearly seven-metre long whale washed in with the tide overnight, Department of Conservation marine species manager Ian Angus said.

"It looks mature, they don't get much bigger than that, is my understanding.

"It looks like it's possibly died of natural causes, although we don't know, given that it's buried."

The department, in consultation with iwi and the local council would make a decision about what to do with it, Mr Angus said.

"But [we're] also going to have to think about issues such as health and safety and a decision will be made on how to dispose of it.

It would eventually be buried, he said.

"The problem is you can't leave it here because it's a very public beach and so respecting the wishes of iwi but also public health, it will probably get moved, but we'll wait until we know more about the logistics and how to manage that."

"Certainly we'll be discouraging people from handling it."

Jennie Smeaton from Te Runanga O Toa Rangatira, the authority for local iwi Ngati Toa Rangatira, said they had performed a karakia earlier in the day.

"The tide's coming in so we won't be able to do anything until later this afternoon when the tide goes back out."

The whale had been cordoned off to keep the public away, she said.

"We've had people pulling at bits and pieces of it but it's the hygiene issues and health and safety that we're concerned about."

Constable David Payne said police were at the scene for crowd control and to try to keep the public away from the whale.

GM confirms at least 19 dead in faulty-ignition crashes

France 24 [16/9/14]:

General Motors acknowledged on Monday that more people died in crashes linked to its faulty ignitions than the 13 it originally reported, saying 19 death claims were approved for compensation.

In its first report on processing compensation requests for the problem, GM said it had received claims for 125 deaths, another 58 for crippling injuries and 262 for hospitalization stemming from ignition-related accidents.

Of those, it has so far determined 31 claims eligible for compensation, including 19 of the death claims.

GM said Monday that the rest of the claims are either still awaiting review or are judged deficient and needing more documentation, with independent compensation claims expert Kenneth Feinberg in charge of deciding which claims are valid.

In the base plan announced by Feinberg on June 30, for each eligible death claim, GM will pay a minimum $1 million for the victim, $300,000 for the surviving spouse and another $300,000 for each surviving dependent.

Financial and medical treatment compensation of at least $20,000 will also be offered to those with eligible physical injury claims from an accident.

GM set up the program earlier this year after recalling 2.6 million cars over the problem, in which the faulty ignition could turn off power to a car's power steering and safety airbags while it is in motion.

GM knew about the problem for a decade or more, but only took recall action beginning in February, after hundreds of possible accidents and deaths in the affected cars.

Before Monday the largest US automaker had only acknowledged 45 accidents and 13 deaths.

The independent Center for Auto Safety says it has counted more than 300 deaths linked to air bag non-deployment in the GM cars covered by the ignition recall, though it has not tied those to ignition shutdowns.

Lawyers for many victims have already filed a number of class-action suits that could cost the company far more than its promised payouts under the compensation program.

But the program offers victims the promise of earlier payouts. if they give up their right to sue once their claim has been accepted.

Compensation claims will be taken through December 31.

Jakarta's Car Free Day more popular than ever

Jakarta Post [15/9/14]:

As Jakarta’s Car Free Day (CFD), which closes off the capital’s main roads in Central Jakarta to vehicles on Sunday mornings, grows more popular, not only are hordes of Jakartans flocking to the streets but so are a long line of commercial brands.

Tens of thousands of residents from across the capital come to the center of the city on Sunday mornings to jog, bike, walk their dogs or simply to just enjoy the capital’s wide and tree-lined streets that are usually packed with private vehicles on weekdays, making CFD one of the most popular Sunday activities in the city.

A local police officer estimated that at least 100,000 people gathered between 6 a.m. and 11 a.m. every Sunday.

Businesses have also made good use of CFD, with dozens of brands opening booths along roads, some even erecting huge stages for promotional events.

...

A slew of urban communities also use CFD to gather, but their meet-ups tend to be smaller while commercial entities usually mobilize much larger crowds.

A group supporting disabled communities, for example, regularly holds free sign language training at the traffic circle. Students from various schools and universities — sometimes from outside the city — can always be found promoting events or collecting funds for their causes.

On Sunday, dozens of people from various backgrounds staged a peaceful rally at the traffic circle, protesting against the local elections bill, which is aimed at scrapping the direct election of governors, regents and mayors.

Group spokesperson Maskurudin Hafidz said the group was taking advantage of CFD to collect signatures from residents to support their petition.

Jakarta Transportation Agency head Muhammad Akbar said that all members of society — including civil society groups and businesses — were allowed to make use of the weekly event.

They all can hold events freely as long as they fulfill the requirements.

“They are not allowed to use generators or motorized vehicles at the event. Furthermore, they must not use any machinery or carry out any activity that may potentially produce pollution,” he said, adding that there were many other strict regulations that the event holders had to follow.

Prospective event holders are required to submit a proposal to the agency describing the details of their event, including how many people are expected to attend. Although the agency has yet to ban any events based on the number of people attending, Akbar said that the agency would not allow any events that could potentially disrupt CFD.

Akbar said that the Transportation Agency held a meeting every Tuesday with relevant institutions, including the police and the Environment Agency, to discuss and decide which events would be granted permits.

"A different class of villain": Apartheid Australia incarcerates and psychologically tortures children in slave compounds.

Nine MSN [16/9/14]:

Three Darwin teenagers overpowered two guards, stole their swipecards and climbed onto the roof of a correctional centre, in the second such incident in two days.

The 14-year-old and two 15-year-old boys spent almost three hours before being talked down from the roof of the new Darwin Correctional Precinct (DCP) at about 10pm on Monday.

The guards were taken to hospital where one was treated for a cut above his eye and the other for a blow to head.

The incident followed another in the early hours of Sunday, when two boys aged 15 and 16 kicked open their cell door at the DCP and spent an hour on the roof.

They were part of a group of six who had tried to escape the Don Dale juvenile detention facility in late August, after arming themselves with metal bars and glass, barricading doors and smashing windows and light fittings.

Tear gas was used and the dog squad was called in to deal with what turned into a three-hour siege.

As a result, Don Dale was closed a month early and all its teenage inmates were moved to the Complex Behavioural Unit at the new $500 million DCP.

They will eventually be housed at the old Berrimah prison once its adult inmates are transferred over.

Corrections Minister John Elferink said the teenagers were "a different class of villain".

"They are simply more violent than we are used to dealing with in our corrections system," he told ABC radio on Tuesday.

The NT Department of Corrections was already reviewing its systems after the August siege when the two DCP incidents occurred.

"These kids often come from homes that just aren't what they could be," Mr Elferink said.

The three boys involved in Monday's incident will be charged.

New stats reveal that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Women are one of the most incarcerated groups in the world [Human Rights Law Centre Media Release - 16/9/14]

Serious traffic crash, Mackay

QPS Media [16/9/14]:

Police are invesitgating a serious traffic crash on Shakespeare Street, Mackay this morning.

Initial information suggests between James and Sophia streets, a car struck a pedestrian who was attempting to enter a parked car at around 11.12am.

The pedestrian, a 59-year-old woman, was transported to the Mackay Base Hospital with serious injuries.

Traffic diversions are currently in place. Please plan your trip accordingly.

Anyone with information which could assist with this matter should contact Crime Stoppers anonymously via 1800 333 000 or crimestoppers.com.au 24hrs a day.

Sex offender escape claims 'unreliable'

Yahoo [16/9/14]:

Claims serial rapist Robert Fardon was plotting to escape from supervised accommodation are unreliable, a lawyer for Queensland's attorney-general admits.

Fardon, 65, was due to face a court hearing on Tuesday after a fellow sex offender reported to authorities that he was planning to flee from his Wacol-based accommodation in Brisbane to NSW.

However, before proceedings got under way, Jonathan Horton, lawyer for Queensland's attorney-general, told the court there was no available evidence to back the claims and admitted their source was unreliable.

"Ethically, I'm not in a position to take the application further," he said.

Mr Horton asked Supreme Court Justice Peter Lyons to excuse sex offender Robert Riddler and another prisoner, Roderick Button, from subpoenas to give evidence that were served on them ahead of the scheduled trial.

Riddler's claims to authorities that Fardon asked him for help to flee across the border to NSW resulted in the notorious sex offender being sent back to prison earlier this month.

Fardon's lawyer Dan O'Gorman has applied for an order requiring the attorney-general to pay Fardon's legal costs.

Police called to Gold Coast 'explosion'

Yahoo [16/9/14]:

Gold Coast police have been called to an explosion at a complex in Robina.

They received the first reports of the incident at a unit on Killarney Avenue shortly before 8am on Tuesday.

A spokeswoman said there was nothing to confirm speculation the explosion could have come from a drug laboratory.

Three fire engines attended the property about 9.45am.

The area was declared safe soon after and was left in the hands of the Queensland Police Service, a Fire and Emergency spokeswoman told AAP.

Paramedics were called just before 10am.

The Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) has not transferred any patients to hospital but crews remained on stand-by, a QAS spokeswoman said.

Maritime unions consider 457 appeal

Nine MSN [16/9/14]:

Maritime unions are protesting in Perth against federal government measures that make it easier for employers to hire overseas workers for offshore oil and gas projects.

The Maritime Union of Australia rally is being held outside the AMMA Skilled Migration Conference, attended by assistant minister for immigration Michaelia Cash.

Senator Cash in July issued a ministerial determination nullifying restrictions on foreign workers on offshore projects that were imposed by the Labor government.

Tuesday's protest comes a day after a Federal Court decision to throw out the MUA and Australian Maritime Officers Union's challenge to her determination.

However, Justice Robert Buchanan said the argument put by the unions was "a powerful one".

The MUA is considering appealing.

"It beggars belief that a government can override a decision by the Senate and we'll continue to look at all avenues of appeal," MUA national secretary Paddy Crumlin said.

"No doubt Senator Cash and her mates at AMMA were celebrating when the decision was handed down, as they popped open champagne corks to toast the shafting of the next generation of Australian oil and gas workers."

MUA Western Australia secretary Christy Cain said the union was not against 457 workers, but local options needed to be exhausted first.

The union is particularly angry about the hiring of about 30 foreign welders at the Chevron-operated Gorgon gas project on Barrow Island off WA's Pilbara coast.

Thousands of Australians can't afford food

West Australian [16/9/14]:

More than 60,000 WA families, including some on high incomes, are struggling to put food on the table because they cannot afford it, according to WA researchers.

The latest results from the WA Nutrition Monitoring Survey found that having enough money to buy food was not so much about level of income but the ability to manage money in an environment of increasingly higher living expenses.

Curtin University researchers found that those most struggling to buy enough food were people under age 35 and those on incomes of less than $40,000 - particularly those on incomes under $20,000.

People who ate fast food more than three times a week or suffered psychological problems such as depression were also more likely to run out of food.

Presenting the findings at the Public Health Association of Australia's annual conference in Perth yesterday, researcher Christina Pollard said while lack of food affected only a relatively small proportion of the population - about 4 per cent - it was still a major problem in WA.

"It's an important and significant issue because there are families and children implicated and these figures are likely to be the tip of the iceberg," she said.

"It's the reality for a lot of people and we need to get across the issue more, to find out the severity and the length of time people are facing this."

Ms Pollard said no one should face a lack of food in a country such as Australia, which produced enough food for everyone even though not everyone got it.

The study suggested access to food was not just dependent on income but also people's ability to save money.

Ms Pollard said people who struggled to afford food also tended to eat more junk food and takeaway.

"You can feed your kids really cheaply with unhealthy food and this is something we need to further research," she said.

The fate of a Nambour woman who lost her licence for a month because of poor communication from the State Penalties Enforcement Registry has prompted calls for it to send letters by registered mail.

Nicklin MP Peter Wellington has called on the State Government to amend SPER's debt collection process to ensure people affected by its decisions are properly informed. ... [Sunshine Coast Daily - 16/9/14]

The Currumbin mosque is not controversial and has not divided the community.

The Gold Coast political and media establishment are fundamentalist christian bigots and liars.

Nine MSN [16/9/14]:

The fate of a controversial mosque planned for the Gold Coast is about to be decided.

Gold Coast City Council will determine at a meeting on Tuesday whether to approve the Currumbin mosque, which has divided the local community.

Salsabil Charitable Organisation wants the council to endorse plans to convert a warehouse on a 4768 square metre site into an Islamic place of worship.

The proposal has triggered several protests from residents, some waving anti-Islamic signs, throughout the approvals process.

Gold Coast City councillor Chris Robbins says she has been threatened with gang rape and death from people opposed to the development.

Police are also investigating death threats against two other councillors, Cameron Caldwell and William Owen-Jones.

Community anger against the development increased after it received support from a council planning committee meeting last week.

A full council meeting on Tuesday from 10am will have the final say over the proposal.

Armed robbery charges, East Bundaberg

QPS Media [16/9/14]:

Police have charged two men following the armed robbery of an adult store at East Bundaberg last night.

It will be alleged around 8.30pm two men entered the Princess Street store armed with knives and a tyre lever before demanding cash from a male employee.

The staff member complied with their demands and fled the scene with a sum of cash.

Police arrested two men in a nearby street a short time later.

A 30-year-old East Bundaberg man and a 35-year-old Bundaberg West man were both charged with one count of armed robbery.

They are due to appear in the Bundaberg Magistrates Court today.

Anyone with information which could assist with this matter should contact Crime Stoppers anonymously via 1800 333 000 or crimestoppers.com.au 24hrs a day.

Armed Robberies, South Brisbane District

QPS Media [16/9/14]:

Police are investigating two armed robbery that occurred overnight in the South Brisbane District.

The first robbery occurred at 10.05pm at a convenience store on Logan Road, Upper Mount Gravatt.

Three men have entered the store and one has produced a firearm and the other two have produced knives.

They made demands for cash and cigarettes from the attendant, who has complied, and they have then

demanded cash and wallets from two customers who were in the store at the time.

The men have then fled the store with a sum of cash and a quantity of cigarettes.

The second robbery occurred at 10.25pm at a convenience store on Pine Mountain Road, Carindale.

Three men have entered the store, threatened the attendant and have taken a quantity of cigarettes, cash and scratch it tickets before fleeing the store and were last seen on Creek Road.

No one was injured as a result of either robbery.

The offenders are all described as being Pacific Islander in appearance with proportionate builds and wearing dark clothing.

All of the men had their faces covered and one was wearing a red and white Christmas hat.

Investigations into the robberies are continuing.

Traffic crash, Townsville

QPS Media [15/9/14]:

Police are investigating a single vehicle traffic crash on Cambridge Street Currajong.

Initial investigations revel the station wagon was travelling inbound along the Dalrymple Service Road and has attempted to turn right into Cambridge Street when the vehicle left the road and collided with a tree.

The driver, a 15-year-old female from Mysterton and passenger, a 20-year-old woman from Heatley have been transported to Townsville Hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

Investigations are continuing and police are appealing to anyone who witnessed the crash to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or Policelink on 131444.

Engineer backs claims about bund wall issues

Gladstone Observer [16/9/14]:

Daniel Burdon

An engineer who worked on the bund wall project associated with the Western Basin dredging project in Gladstone harbour has backed the findings of a confidential report on the wall's failings.

APN on Monday revealed that the Gladstone Ports Corporation ignored its approved plans and external advice by failing to place a rock covering over a geotextile filter on the bund wall.

A confidential report by independent engineer Dr Peter Cummings, seen by APN and obtained in a Freedom of Information application by Australians for Animals, has raised further questions about the veracity of the harbour's management of the project and the nature of the bund wall inquiry itself.

Engineer and geotextile specialist Warren Hornsey, who worked on the project and first raised concerns about the bund wall publicly late last year, backed Dr Cummings' findings.

But while Dr Cummings said the geotextile may have done the job if it was appropriately covered, Mr Hornsey said the fabric used itself was not designed for use in bund walls.

"It's like everything it would've helped if they'd put the covering material over the top, but at the end of the day there were a few issues with the geotextile used," he said.

Mr Hornsey told APN there were three key issues, one being the failure to provide the rock covering, a second being the "pore size" of the geotextile, and the third that it was the wrong type of fabric.

"The generic type of geotextile used is great on roads and landfill applications, but it's susceptible to abrasion in coastal applications," he said.

"The reality is the material that was used in the Gladstone bund wall was not the right material."

The ports corporation declined to answer specific questions on Monday, but its submission to the bund wall review claimed that after it received advice that the rock covering was not needed, it received further advice a "lighter grade material would suffice".

But Dr Cummings' report revealed the port had ignored the advice that the rock covering should remain, while Mr Hornsey debunked claims a lighter material would suffice.

Mr Hornsey said he had seen similar problems on other jobs around the country, due to the wrong application of a geotextile, but he raised the concerns publicly so "the same mistakes don't get made again".

"If on a small job you have a failure you speak to the local authorities, but it doesn't get out to the wider community," he said.

"But in Gladstone, because it's such big news, it provided an opportunity to get the broader industry to take notice of the issue.

"It wasn't to point fingers at the designers. If we take the attitude that the geotextile used was correct, we run the risk of the same thing happening again," he said.

Mr Hornsey further said that if it was correct, as Dr Cummings asserts that he was not allowed to talk to the port directly during his investigation, it was "quite an amazing way of doing an inquiry".

"It doesn't sound like a real independent inquiry to me. I think that the ideal thing would be for somebody to use this as a case study to make sure it doesn't happen again," he said.

Mr Hornsey also backed calls from Australians for Animals' Sue Arnold during a recent Senate inquiry, for a full Commission of Inquiry into the dredging project and associated works, under national environmental law.

"Absolutely, I think it's necessary; if ports authorities give specific guidelines on how to design a bund wall and do the same thing they've been doing over the years, there is no learning from the problems encountered at Gladstone," he said.

"If there's some way to make them learn - to me, that's got to be almost industry driven.

"That has to come from the ports authorities and the governments have to ask: How do we build these things properly?"

However, a ports corporation spokeswoman said the port believed the "inquiries and reviews undertaken" about the project were "sufficient to understand the events".

She said the port had cooperated fully with the bund wall review, and "intends to, and will, incorporate the lessons learned from the review into its future practices".

The Federal Department of Environment has not responded to questions regarding the matter.

Joyce Mayne to close doors in North Rockhampton

Morning Bulletin [14/9/14]:

Joyce Mayne in North Rockhampton will close its doors at the end of next month.

Joyce Mayne general manager Rahoul Pozniakov said the decision wasn't made lightly.

"It just wasn't economically viable to continue running the Rockhampton branch," he said.

About 25 staff members will be affected.

He said some staff members might be offered a position at the nearby Harvey Norman store at Redhill Shopping Centre.

Others would be made redundant.

Mr Pozniakov said it would now be the Rockhampton franchisee's jobs to carry out that filtering process.

All staff members have been notified of the closure.

Joyce Mayne loyalists will have to travel three hours north to Mackay if they wish to buy a product from the same store.

The nearest store south of Rockhampton is in Bundaberg.

The Morning Bulletin understands there has been interest from several parties to lease the building.

The electrical, computers, bedding and furniture store in Yaamba Rd will close its doors for good on October 31.

Labor does not "break ranks on Iraq".

They're all the way with the war and want to keep monopolising dissent at the same time.

Grubs.

Hypocrite Labor MP Melissa Parke says 'open-ended war' in Iraq will increase security threat [ABC - 16/9/14]:

... Earlier this month the Government and Labor rejected a Greens push demanding Parliament be given the responsibility of authorising military deployments, as do the US and UK legislatures.

If you are in (or support) the ALP, you are directly responsible for the refugee concentration camps.

Denounce the party or stop pretending.

Shorten's mumblings about thinking about maybe discussing raising the refugee intake are not policy or a guarantee or even an election promise.

They are meaningless.

ABC, AM [16/9/14]:

... CHRIS UHLMANN: Now some of the same people in the left are concerned about your border protection policies. Is there any likelihood you'll abandon your commitment to offshore processing?

BILL SHORTEN: No.

CHRIS UHLMANN: That's a firm rolled gold commitment; you're not going to abandon it?

BILL SHORTEN: No.

CHRIS UHLMANN: Will it be changed in any way?

BILL SHORTEN: No, we support regional resettlement. And we support the offshore processing.

...

Auschwitz guard charged with 300,000 counts of accessory to murder

Independent [15/9/14]:

Oskar Groening has openly talked about his two-and-a-half years as a guard at the Nazi death camp but says that while he witnessed atrocities, he didn’t commit any himself.

But Hanover prosecutors claimed today he was a cog in the machine, noting he helped to collect money stolen from murdered inmates.

In his job dealing with the belongings stolen from camp victims, prosecutors said among other things he was charged with helping collect and tally money that was found.

"He helped the Nazi regime benefit economically, and supported the systematic killings," state prosecutors in the city of Hanover said in a statement.

Groening's attorney, Hans Holtermann, declined to comment on the charges.

In 2005, Groening told Der Spiegel magazine he recalled one incident on "ramp duty" when he heard a baby crying. "I saw another SS soldier grab the baby by the legs" he said. "He smashed the baby's head against the iron side of a truck until it was silent."

Groening, who lives in the Hanover area, is one of some 30 former Auschwitz guards who federal investigators recommended last year that state prosecutors pursue charges against under a new precedent in German law.

Groening is the fourth case investigated by Hanover — two have been shelved because the suspects have been deemed unfit for trial, and one was closed when the suspect died.

Holtermann said, however, his client is in good health.

Thomas Walther, who represents 20 Auschwitz victims and their families as co-plaintiffs in the case against Groening as allowed under German law, said it's their last chance "to participate in bringing justice to one of the SS men who had a part in the murder of their closest relatives."

"Many of the co-plaintiffs are among the last survivors of Auschwitz," he told The Associated Press.

The source of the story about migrants having their boat rammed by "people smugglers" in the Mediterranean is the IOM.

Indymedia [23/9/02]:

A shadowy group called the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) has recently opened an office in London.

It takes over the responsibility of enforcing repatriation of foreign nationals.

The home office has increasingly turned to outsourcing their business such as private companies running detention camps. There is also a tradition of funding NGOs such as the Refugee Council to cover some aspects of asylum and immigration policy.

The IOM has established several schemes and co-operations.

These include Voluntary Assisted Return Programme, Return and Re-integration to Somalia regions, Return and Re-integration of Qualified Ugandan Nationals.

The IOM was founded in 1951 as a counter agency to the United Nations Human Rights Council. Whereas the UNHCR was founded on humanitarian principles, the IOM was founded on economic considerations.

Whilst the UNHCR is bound by international law, the IOM is a membership organisation, therefore subject to no regulation.

Since 1989 the IOM has been transformed into a transnational agency for the global management of migration for the sake of economics and the new world order.

Its individual programmes are embedded in a wider approach of migration management that is based upon neo-liberal ideology which makes an economically founded distinction between desirable and undesirable migration.

The IOM has rapidly expanded its influence by opening 19 regional offices and over 100 field offices. These offices cover the whole world.

Since their founding, they have interfered in the lives of over 11 million people, and in 2000 alone, facilitated the movement of over 450 000 people. For this purpose, the IOM negotiated a 60% flight discount for many airlines, German activists have accused them of being the world’s largest human trafficker.

The IOM claims only to support voluntary returns, these are normally disguised deportations. These are often desperate asylum seekers who having been refused all benefits, are forced by their plight to sign deportation papers with the IOM.

Its offices described as an ‘early warning system on migration’ represents nothing more than a global network of spies against migrants and their supporters. These offices detect migration routes and patterns, to give advice to governments and to train border guards on new technology.

Their information campaigns run in Sangatte, Macedonia and Azerbijan. They target professionals or migrants and often disguise meetings to prevent women trafficking although the overall aim is to discourage further migration.

 

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12 July 2014

11 July 2014

10 July 2014

9 July 2014 8 July 2014 7 July 2014 6 July 2014 5 July 2014 4 July 2014 1 July 2014

 

30 June 2014 29 June 2014 28 June 2014 27 June 2014 25 June 2014 24 June 2014

23 June 2014

21 June 2014

20 June 2014

19 June 2014 18 June 2014 17 June 2014 16 June 2014 15 June 2014

14 June 2014

13 June 2014

12 June 2014 11 June 2014 10 June 2014 9 June 2014 8 June 2014 7 June 2014

6 June 2014

5 June 2014

4 June 2014

3 June 2014

2 June 2014

1 June 2014

 

30 May 2014

29 May 2014

28 May 2014

27 May 2014

26 May 2014

25 May 2014

24 May 2014

23 May 2014

22 May 2014

21 May 2014

20 May 2014

19 May 2014

18 May 2014

17 May 2014

16 May 2014 15 May 2014 14 May 2014 13 May 2014 12 May 2014 11 May 2014 10 May 2014 9 May 2014

8 May 2014

7 May 2014

6 May 2014

5 May 2014

4 May 2014

3 May 2014

2 May 2014

1 May 2014

 

30 April 2014 28 April 2014 27 April 2014 25 April 2014

23 April 2014

22 April 2014

21 April 2014

20 April 2014

18 April 2014

17 April 2014

16 April 2014

15 April 2014

14 April 2014

13 April 2014

12 April 2014 11 April 2014 10 April 2014 9 April 2014 8 April 2014 7 April 2014 6 April 2014 5 April 2014 4 April 2014 3 April 2014 2 April 2014 1 April 2014

30 March 2014 29 March 2014 28 March 2014 27 March 2014 26 March 2014 25 March 2014 24 March 2014

23 March 2014

22 March 2014

21 March 2014

20 March 2014

19 March 2014

18 March 2014 17 March 2014 16 March 2014 14 March 2014 13 March 2014 12 March 2014 11 March 2014

10 March 2014

9 March 2014

8 March 2014

7 March 2014

6 March 2014

5 March 2014

4 March 2014

3 March 2014

1 March 2014

 

28 February 2014

27 February 2014

26 February 2014

25 February 2014

24 February 2014

22 February 2014

21 February 2014

20 February 2014

19 February 2014

18 February 2014

17 February 2014

16 February 2014 15 February 2014 12 February 2014 11 February 2014 10 February 2014 9 February 2014 8 February 2014 7 February 2014 6 February 2014 5 February 2014 4 February 2014 3 February 2014 2 February 2014 1 February 2014

31 January 2014

30 January 2014

29 January 2014

28 January 2014

27 January 2014

26 January 2014

25 January 2014

24 January 2014

23 January 2014

22 January 2014

21 January 2014

20 January 2014

17 January 2014

15 January 2014

14 January 2014

13 January 2014 12 January 2014 11 January 2014 8 January 2014 7 January 2014 6 January 2014 1 January 2014

30 December 2013 29 December 2013 28 December 2013 23 December 2013 21 December 2013 19 December 2013 18 December 2013 16 December 2013 15 December 2013 14 December 2013 13 December 2013 12 December 2013 11 December 2013 10 December 2013 9 December 2013 8 December 2013 7 December 2013 6 December 2013 5 December 2013 4 December 2013 3 December 2013 2 December 2013

30 November 2013 29 November 2013 28 November 2013 26 November 2013 25 November 2013 24 November 2013 23 November 2013 22 November 2013 21 November 2013 20 November 2013 19 November 2013 18 November 2013 16 November 2013 15 November 2013 14 November 2013 13 November 2013 12 November 2013 10 November 2013 7 November 2013 6 November 2013 5 November 2013 4 November 2013 2 November 2013 1 November 2013

30 October 2013 29 October 2013 27 October 2013 25 October 2013 23 October 2013 22 October 2013 20 October 2013 17 October 2013 15 October 2013 13 October 2013 11 October 2013 8 October 2013 6 October 2013 4 October 2013 3 October 2013 2 October 2013

30 September 2013 28 September 2013 26 September 2013 25 September 2013 24 September 2013 22 September 2013 20 September 2013 17 September 2013 13 September 2013 11 September 2013 10 September 2013 8 September 2013 6 September 2013 5 September 2013 3 September 2013 2 September 2013 1 September 2013

2 August 2013 4 August 2013 5 August 2013 7 August 2013 10 August 2013 13 August 2013 14 August 2013 16 August 2013 17 August 2013 18 August 2013 19 August 2013 21 August 2013 23 August 2013 25 August 2013 26 August 2013 28 August 2013 31 August 2013

2 July 2013 5 July 2013 7 July 2013 10 July 2013 12 July 2013 14 July 2013 16 July 2013 19 July 2013 21 July 2013 23 July 2013 25 July 2013 26 July 2013 28 July 2013 30 July 2013

2 June 2013 4 June 2013 5 June 2013 7 June 2013 9 June 2013 12 June 2013 16 June 2013 17 June 2013 20 June 2013 23 June 2013 26 June 2013 30 June 2013

5 May 2013 6 May 2013 12 May 2013 15 May 2013 17 May 2013 19 May 2013 22 May 2013 26 May 2013 28 May 2013 29 May 2013

7 April 2013 14 April 2013 21 April 2013 28 April 2013

February 2013

6 January 2013 13 January 2013 20 January 2013 27 January 2013

2 December 2012 9 December 2012 16 December 2012 23 December 2012 30 December 2012

4 November 2012 11 November 2012 18 November 2012 25 November 2012

7 October 2012 14 October 2012 21 October 2012 28 October 2012

2 September 2012 9 September 2012 16 September 2012 23 September 2012 30 September 2012

5 August 2012 12 August 2012 19 August 2012 26 August 2012

1 July 2012 8 July 2012 15 July 2012 22 July 2012 29 July 2012

3 June 2012 10 June 2012 17 June 2012 24 June 2012

6 May 2012 13 May 2012 20 May 2012 27 May 2012

1 April 2012 8 April 2012 15 April 2012 22 April 2012 29 April 2012

4 March 2012 11 March 2012 18 March 2012 25 March 2012

5 February 2012 12 February 2012 19 February 2012 26 February 2012


1 January 2012 8 January 2012 15 January 2012 22 January 2012 29 January 2012


4 December 2011 11 December 2011 18 December 2011 25 December 2011

6 November 2011 13 November 2011 20 November 2011 27 November 2011

2 October 2011 9 October 2011 16 October 2011 23 October 2011 30 October 2011

4 September 2011 11 September 2011 18 September 2011 25 September 2011

7 August 2011 14 August 2011 21 August 2011 28 August 2011

3 July 2011 10 July 2011 17 July 2011 24 July 2011 31 July 2011


5 June 2011 12 June 2011 19 June 2011 26 June 2011

29 May 2011 21 May 2011 14 May 2011 7 May 2011

January 2011 February 2011 March 2011 April 2011

January 2010 February 2010 March 2010 April 2010 May 2010 June 2010 July 2010 August 2010 September 2010 October 2010 November 2010 December 2010

January 2009 February 2009 March 2009 April 2009 May 2009 June 2009 July 2009 August 2009 September 2009 October 2009 November 2009 December 2009

June 2008 July 2008 August 2008 September 2008 October 2008 November 2008 December 2008

May 2008 April 2008

March 2008 February 2008 January 2008

December 2007 November 2007 October 2007 September 2007 August 2007 July 2007 June 2007 May 2007 April 2007 March 2007 February 2007 January 2007

December 2006 November 2006 October 2006 September 2006 August 2006 May 2006 April 2006 March 2006 February 2006 January 2006 2005


FEEDBACK

JUDICIAL CRITICISM OF THE MURDOCH MACHINE

BOB BROWN, THE FIRST GULF WAR AND UNITED NATIONS INTERVENTION

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