Bastille Day and the French Revolution (1789)


The Third Estates carrying the Clergy and the Nobility on its back.



La Fête nationale:



... In the wake of the 11 July dismissal of Jacques Necker (the finance minister, who was sympathetic to the Third Estate), the people of Paris, fearful that they and their representatives would be attacked by the royal army, and seeking to gain ammunition and gunpowder for the general populace, stormed the Bastille, a fortress-prison in Paris which had often held people jailed on the basis of lettres de cachet, arbitrary royal indictments that could not be appealed.  ....





‏@ArtBasel:   Piero Golia's toppled guillotine presented by @Gagosian/@Bortolami_nyc at Basel's city hall via Parcours 2015.





Exclusive: Yanis Varoufakis opens up about his five month battle to save Greece [New Statesman - 13/7/15]:



... It is well known that Varoufakis was taken off Greece’s negotiating team shortly after Syriza took office; he was still in charge of the country’s finances but no longer in the room. It’s long been unclear why. In April, he said vaguely that it was because “I try and talk economics in the Eurogroup” – the club of 19 finance ministers whose countries use the Euro – “which nobody does.” I asked him what happened when he did.

 “It’s not that it didn’t go down well – there was point blank refusal to engage in economic arguments. Point blank. You put forward an argument that you’ve really worked on, to make sure it’s logically coherent, and you’re just faced with blank stares. It is as if you haven’t spoken. What you say is independent of what they say. You might as well have sung the Swedish national anthem – you’d have got the same reply.”  ...





$9.5 million for an inquiry into the Newman government's closure of the Barrett Centre when you could just re-open it, NOW?








Brisbane Times [13/7/15]:



Tuesday's budget contains $9.5 million for an inquiry into three suicides of troubled teenagers from the former Barrett Centre, controversially closed by the previous LNP state government in January 2014.

The Barrett Adolescent Psychiatric Centre at Wacol ran as a stand-alone section of the larger adult mental health facility, The Park.

Before it was closed by former Health Minister Lawrence Springborg in January 2014, the centre provided programs specifically for teenagers with severe mental health issues.

It was Queensland's only live-in centre for teenagers with mental health problems and many parents decried the government's decision to close the centre before building alternative care.

Families of the three suicide victims – in a story broken by Fairfax Media in July 2014 – called on both political parties for a commission of inquiry into the deaths.

The victims were Will Fowell, 18, Talieha Nebuer, 17 and Caitlin Wilkinson-Whiticker, 18.

Earlier, in November 2012, parents also condemned government plans to close a nearby school which provided classes to patients at the Barrett Centre, telling Fairfax Media the decision to close the school was "dangerous".

Of the $9.5 million, $3 million is for the 2015 inquiry, while a further $4.5 million for legal expenses and possible compensation for the victims' families, a ministerial spokesman confirmed.

The commission of inquiry will begin before Christmas and run for "between three and six months".

Any money left over would go to building a replacement Barrett Centre facility, if the Commission of Inquiry rules that is the best option for young people, the spokesman said.

Many parents opposed the centre's closure arguing it provided the state's only live-in mental health care for teenagers.

However the LNP believed the centre was not providing the best care for teenagers with mental health problems and closed the centre, promising alternative care.

Labor Government will build a replacement live-in mental health facility for young people with severe mental illness.

However the location and scale of the "Tier 3, sub-acute facility" will be based on the recommendations of the commission of inquiry, a spokesman for Health Minister Cameron Dick said.

A retired judge with full powers to summon witnesses will run the inquiry.

Queensland Health is currently negotiating the availability of a person experienced in mental health issues to run the inquiry.

"The person we are trying to get is someone with a judicial background, but someone very familiar with mental health issues," a spokesman said.

A separate coroners' inquiry into the three deaths was announced in December 2014.

In a statement to the ABC, Health Minister Cameron Dick said parents deserved to know the circumstances of their children's deaths.

He said the inquiry would focus on the "full facts surrounding the decisions" that led to the shut-down and the "subsequent tragic deaths".

"The government is committed to seeking out the truth because the families, staff, community and families of others impacted by the centre's closure, at the very least deserve to know what happened," he said.








Queensland government offers infinite public funding and an unfair playing field to developer mates, blowins and shysters [Treasurer Media Release – 13/7/15]






Rebels bikie boss plans to challenge his exile from Australia in the High Court



… When they dragged me in it was a dusty old day

as I walked passed the folks I heard what they'd say

string him up shoot him down

and then piss on his grave, on his grave …

'Lonesome Tears' Dan Sultan [2006]




Nine MSN [13/7/15]:

Rebels bikie boss Alex Vella plans to challenge his exile from Australia in the High Court.

The Rebels national president and his legal team are seeking special leave before the High Court claiming he has been denied natural justice under the Migration Act.

Mr Vella has been stuck in Malta, the country of his birth, since the federal government cancelled his Australian residency visa in June last year.

This is all part of the ongoing campaign against outlaw motorcycle gangs.

Immigration Minister Peter Dutton said he had given specific instructions to his department to work with state authorities to identify who these people might be and to exclude them.

Mr Vella said he should be given a fair go.

"I worked. I paid my taxes. I vote," he told ABC radio.

"Here I am stranded in a small country which I left to a country I love. I love Australia. It's my country."

Mr Vella has challenged the government to release all the information it has against him. Much of that is apparently based on secret intelligence.

"Why is it a secret? What am I, some guy coming from some other country? I lived there for 47 years. I paid over $4 million in taxes," he said.

Mr Vella's lawyer Peter Webb said his client had not been able to face his accusers.

"Without access to all the documentation it is unclear what aspects of Mr Vella's character does not fit the test," he said.

Mr Vella said the Rebels were continuing without him.

"It doesn't matter if I'm there or not there. The club is still gonna run," he said.






Detectives from Taskforce Maxima today arrested an alleged associate of the Gold Coast Mongols OMCG in relation to Operation Lima Interlude. ... [QPS Media - 13/7/15]








The pardon came after the Ministry of Interior, in March, gave the green light to Sourn Serey Ratha to form a political party to contest in upcoming elections.  ...  Cambodian King Norodom Sihamoni grants pardon to self-exiled dissident Sourn Serey Ratha [Khmer Times - 11/7/15]







55yo Aramac woman fighting for life after assault outside western Queensland hotel

ABC [13/7/15]:

Police are investigating an assault in Aramac, in western Queensland, on Saturday night, that has left a 55-year-old woman with life-threatening injuries.

Police said about 9:15pm (AEST), two men were involved in a fight in front of the hotel on Gordon Street in Aramac.

They said a 55-year-old woman attempted to intervene and was seriously injured as a result.

The woman was taken to the Barcaldine Hospital with life-threatening head injuries and then flown to Townsville.

Police are appealing for more witnesses to come forward.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or Longreach police on 4652 5200.



Fires engulf two houses in Brisbane

Yahoo [13/7/15]:

All residents from two southeast Queensland houses that went up in flames have been accounted for, firefighters say.

Seven fire crews rushed to Victoria Parade at Clayfield, in Brisbane's north, about 4.45pm on Monday after reports of the first blaze.

The high-set Queenslander was well alight when they arrived and firefighters were working to prevent damage to neighbouring properties, a Queensland Fire and Emergency Services spokeswoman said.

The fire investigation unit has been called in.

The second blaze, which erupted around the same time at Crestmead, south of the city, was causing large amounts of black smoke in the area.

Three fire crews were battling flames that took hold of the single-level property.


Armed robbery, Eight Mile Plains

QPS Media [13/7/15]:

Police are investigating the armed robbery of a taxi driver in Eight Mile Plains early this morning.

At around 12.30am, a taxi driver was waiting at a rank outside a licensed venue at the corner of Logan and Gaskell Roads when a man sat in the front passenger seat, produced a knife and demanded the driver’s wallet.

The driver sustained cuts to his hand as he exited the taxi.

The man left the scene in a vehicle. At this stage, it is not known whether the man stole any items.

The taxi driver drove himself to the Queensland Elizabeth II Jubilee Hospital for treatment.

Investigations are continuing.

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



Armed robbery, Bundaberg

QPS Media [12/7/15]:

Police are investigating following the armed robbery of a video store in Bundaberg tonight.

Around 6.45pm a man armed with a knife entered the Maryborough Street store and threatened the male shop assistance before making demands for cash.

The store attendant complied and the man left the store with a sum of cash.

The shop assistant was not injured during the incident.

Investigations are continuing.

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



13 year olds charged over police pursuit fatality

Nine MSN [13/7/15]:

Two 13-year-old boys have been charged over an alleged hit-run in Darwin in which an elderly woman was struck by a stolen utility.

Police say four youths stole the Nissan Navara from a car park in Casuarina shortly before 6pm on Sunday, and fled when police spotted the car in the same suburb about 30 minutes later.

A 74-year-old woman was hit and injured when the driver lost control.

The youths fled, however two boys were later arrested. Both have been held in custody charged with aggravated unlawful use of a motor vehicle, recklessly endangering life, dangerous driving, hit and run, and driving a motor vehicle causing serious harm.





Victoria Police revises vehicle pursuit policy, permitting car chases only when public safety threatened [ABC - 13/7/15]





Elderly man dies during workout in unsupervised 24hr gym

MYGC [11/7/15]:


An elderly man has collapsed and died while exercising in an unstaffed 24-hour gym in northern NSW, south of Queensland’s Gold Coast.

It’s understood the man, said to be a horse trainer aged in his 70s, died after suffering a heart attack at the Murwillumbah gym during a pre-dawn workout last Saturday morning.

Gym-goers made the grisly discovery just before 7am.

The elderly man was reportedly a well-known regular who visited the fitness centre, which is often unmanned outside business hours, at least twice a day.

Nick Kyrgios backs axed mate Bernard Tomic



Canberra Times [13/7/15]:

Canberra tennis star Nick Kyrgios has stood by his belief Bernard Tomic has been wrongly dumped from Australia's Davis Cup team, refusing to back down as his difference of opinion with tennis legend Pat Rafter continues.

Kyrgios and the other member of Australia's 'Special Ks", good friend Thanasi Kokkinakis, flew out out of Canberra early Monday morning for this weekend's quarter final tie with Kazakhstan in Darwin.

But world number 26 Tomic, Australia's highest ranked player, won't join them after he was axed from Australia captain Wally Masur's line-up for his scathing attack on Rafter and Tennis Australia at Wimbledon, claiming a lack of support.

Former Davis Cup captain Rafter, now Tennis Australia's director of high performance, hit back in The Sunday Mail.

"It's about opportunity, not entitlement," Rafter told The Sunday Mail. "It's a principle I believe in and feel really passionate about. The philosophy has always been in place within Tennis Australia, but when I came in there, I made it quite clear and quite strong.

"My big philosophy is trying to take away that sense of entitlement and make young players hungry [to succeed]. I hope that, in time, the Tomics [Bernard and father John] would see what we're trying to achieve in terms of helping the culture within our sport."

Kyrgios took aim at the two-time US Open champion's comments via Twitter on Sunday. "Another negative comment out of Rafter's mouth. Does this guy ever stop? #everyoneisaworkinprogress".

Despite enduring two weeks of controversy due to his on-court antics at Wimbledon, Kyrgios wasn't about to toe the company line when asked if he stood by his comments on Monday.

The 20-year-old publicly voiced his support for Tomic last week, and also quashed rumours he would pull out of the Kazakhstan tie via Facebook.

"Yeah definitely. I feel the goal in Davis Cup is to win, so him not being in the team only hurts our chances of winning," he said.

"I think we should have him in the team.

"It [my opinion] is not going to change anything, but I think he should be in the team."

Kokkinakis is preparing for his second Davis Cup tie after he overcame Czech Republic's Lukas Rosol in a five-set marathon in Australia's first round win.

While Kyrgios and Kokkinakis have endured their fair share of drama, the 19-year-old has been a cleanskin on and off the court.

The world number 71 declined to wade into the Tomic controversy, insisting Australia still has enough arsenal to topple Kazakhstan without their top man.

The quarter final starting Friday will be played on grass and Tomic is arguably Australia's most proficient player on the surface, having made the fourth round or better at Wimbledon twice.

"Obviously he's our highest ranked player so it's going to be a loss for us, for sure, [but] I feel like we've got enough," Kokkinakis said.

"He's got his own issues he needs to deal with with Tennis Australia, I'm not trying to get too involved in that.

"He's a great player, but I feel we've got enough that we can get it done."

Old geezers apologise for Bernard Tomic 'Hall of Shame' press release “typo” [ABC – 13/7/15]








You all deserve each other. Go to hell ALP "Abbott would be worse" fascists. Former Labor minister Martin Ferguson cleared by ALP tribunal [Brisbane Times – 13/7/15]:

… "Labor is a broad church and when modernising our policies based on that of the 21st century, there must be room for debate and different views," the tribunal found. …


Kiribati men rescued after four days drifting at sea

RNZI [13/7/15]:



Coast Guard crews from Hawaii have helped rescue five men stranded in waters off Kiribati for four days.

Rescue crews spotted the 4 metre aluminum skiff while searching 300 kilometres eastnortheast of Kiribati's Teraina Island on Friday.

The men were reported to be in good health when they were rescued.

The Rescue Co-ordination Centre in Fiji notified the Coast Guard which was overdue after the men went fishing off Teraina Island last Monday.

The men were reportedly on a skiff with no engine, little provisions and no lifesaving equipment.

They were spotted by a Hercules air crew on Friday and then picked by one ship which will transfer them to another to return them to Kiribati.




Monsoon rain kills 8 people in Philippines

News 24 [13/7/15]:

Torrential monsoon rains killed at least eight people in the Philippines, the country's disaster relief agency said on Monday, and the toll was expected to rise as two tropical storms battered northern Luzon, the main island in the archipelago.

The deluge over the past week forced the closure of government offices and schools in Manila, and caused widespread flooding on major roads and landslides outside the capital.

About 40 000 people across Luzon were affected by the monsoon rain and nearly 4 000 were in temporary shelters due to floods and landslides.

Four fishermen were missing after strong winds and giant waves destroyed their fishing boats and six smaller boats in Bolinao town on the north coast.

"Nine other fishermen were rescued by a passing ship," Alexander Pama, executive director of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council said.

Pama said six people drowned and two were crushed to death as flash floods swept them in swollen river, and rampaging waters caused walls to collapse.

A South Korean diver died and two others were hospitalised after they were swept by strong currents off Mactan Island in the central Philippines and were found hundreds of miles away near Camotes Island.

He said the agriculture ministry estimated initial losses in rice and corn crops at about $90 000. Assessments on the damage to infrastructure damage, particularly on roads and bridges, were still being made.

An average of 20 typhoons pass through the Philippines every year. In 2013, Typhoon Haiyan, the biggest-ever storm to make landfall, hit the central Philippines, killing more than 6 300 people and leaving 14 million people homeless.






Orangutans threatened with extinction

Jakarta Post [13/7/15]:

An animal conservation activist has warned that habitat loss is the greatest threat faced by orangutans.

“What orangutans are facing is a conflict, a fight for land where they live,” Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation (BOSF) executive director Jamartin Sihite said on Sunday.

The conservationist said orangutans were threatened with extinction because forests in which they were living had been degraded or converted.

Citing an example, he said, primary forests that used to be the natural habitats of orangutans in Kalimantan had been converted into production forests, and trees where they used to make nests or forage for food had been chopped down.

Parts of the forests have been converted into plantations, mining areas and human settlement.

Sihite said the absence of primary forests had hampered the BOSF’s plans to release hundreds of orangutans it had taken care of in its conservation areas in Samboja Lestari, East Kalimantan, and Nyaru Menteng, Central Kalimantan, back to their natural habitats.

Samboja Lestari is now home to 270 orangutans while in Nyaru Menteng, there are more than 600 orangutans.

“That’s why we focus our attention on providing special areas for orangutans,” said Sihite.

In 2009, the BOSF established PT Rehabilitasi Habitat Orangutan Indonesia (RHOI), which manages Kehje Sewen, a forest that used to be a forest utilization license (HPH) area in Muara Wahau, East Kutai, and now is used as an area where orangutans will be released.





Indonesian kingpin of illegal wildlife trade gets two years in prison [Coconuts Jakarta - 13/7/15]





Patrons have been let back into Melbourne Zoo after it was earlier sent into lock-down when an orangutan managed to escape from its enclosure.

It's believed Malu the Sumatran orangutan used a blanket as leverage to break the top wire of his enclosure, before walking along the roof to briefly escape.

...  The 11-year-old was captured after being distracted with treats, while a tranquilliser was administered to his shoulder by a zookeeper. ... [Nine MSN - 13/7/15]




Vege Chips celebrates 25 years at Currumbin [Southern Gold Coast – 30/6/15]:


... They were the first mainstream chip cooked in Sunflower oil – rather than Palm oil, which was common place in the earlier days – and despite now seeing a trend towards gluten free foods and gluten free diets, Vege Chips were the first snack food company in Australia to launch gluten free chips. ...




Roll out the tumbrels!



Image: @APACHEZIKO [12/7/15]


What Twitter Thought of Bailout Proposals for Greece: #ThisIsACoup [TIME – 13/7/15]:

Greece and the rest of the euro zone finally reached an agreement on terms for a bailout package early July 13, following tense talks that stretched through the night.

Those talks centered on a package presented to Greece on July 12 that had many Twitter users up in arms and embracing the hashtag #ThisIsACoup.

The hashtag is also currently the subject most searched by Greek users of Google.

The terms of the agreement have not yet been made public but the original proposals included controversial elements introduced by Germany — such as a possible euro “timeout” for Greece and €50 billion (about $55 billion) in public assets set aside for loan payment and collateral — and drew ire from netizens not just in Greece but across the globe.

The hashtag appears to have started with a tweet by physics teacher Sandro Maccarrone in Barcelona, who wrote, “The Eurogroup proposal is a covert coup d’etat against the Greek people. #ThisIsACoup #Grexit” late on July 12.

New York Times columnist Paul Krugman drew attention to the phrase in a column published not long after that, saying, “This Eurogroup list of demands is madness. The trending hashtag ThisIsACoup is exactly right. This goes beyond harsh into pure vindictiveness, complete destruction of national sovereignty, and no hope of relief.”

Within hours, the hashtag had exploded, trending across Europe and even gaining popularity as far away as Egypt and Australia.






‏@Revolution_IRL [12/7/15]:  Since the Lisbon treaty came into force the true meaning of the EU is now being revealed.We must resist #ThisIsACoup




New Zealand media reports on Senator Hanson-Young's Mediterranean trip to see the UN Refugee Convention in action.


 Australian media continues censoring it.



RNZI [13/7/15]:


The immigration spokesperson for the Australian Greens says the way Europe and Australia are dealing with asylum seekers is completely different, despite facing similar challenges.

Senator Sarah Hanson-Young has been in southern Italy to compare the European response to an influx of asylum seekers to that of Australia's.

Thousands of people have tried to make the dangerous voyage across the Mediterranean Sea from Africa and the Middle East in an attempt to seek asylum in Europe.

Ms Hanson-Young says despite the practical and political challenges being similar to Australia, the response between the two is very "chalk and cheese."

"Even just overnight another 300 people were saved from a sinking boat, they were saved by an NGO organisation who are out here to try and save lives and help people when their boat gets in trouble. We just don't have anything like that in Australia. The secrecy, the lack of transparency of how Australia runs its border protection means there is no way you could have a collaborative approach."


Senator Sarah Hanson-Young [12/7/15]:




Update on-board the MOAS Phoenix traveling from Southern Italy towards Libya: Most refugees crossing the Mediterranean from Libya to Italy are from Syria, Eritrea and Afghanistan.

They aren't safe at home and Libya is just as dangerous.

Rape, violence and extortion of migrants in Libya means that those refugees who have fled there from other parts of Africa or Syria are not safe to stay. ...

Conditions at sea have been quite windy at times, which would be pretty rough for anyone on those small wooden boats or a rubber dingy.





Every day, tens of thousands of commuters walk past the diminutive figure in a hoodie on the corner of George and Barrack streets in the CBD.

Most would probably give the bronze sculpture barely a second thought.

But one person at least has thought about it very deeply. In fact, deeply enough to have a professional-looking plaque installed on the wall behind, casting the work in a wholly different light. ... [Sydney Morning Herald - 1/6/15]







Next marcheth war, break-law, and custom-breaker,

Raze-fort, spill-blood, burn-hostry, loving-tears.

Under his brazen feet stoops all the earth.

His mouth a flaming brand, his voice a thunder:

Each finger of his hand a cannon is;

And each regard of his a flaming lightning flash.

Disorder, fear, despair, and speedy flight

Do ragged march before his murdering host:

As likewise, burning pride, impiety.

Rage, discord, sackage and impunity,

Horror and spoil, ruin and cruelty,

Eachwhere attends, where barbarous he walks,

Moan, solitude, with fear do still accost

The bloody steps of his undaunted host.

Guillaume du Bartas (1544-90)

translated by Thomas Lodge (1558 - 1625)





Peace Convergence Media Release [13/7/15]:

A group of Quaker Grannies are currently in the Rockhampton police watchouse after being arrested for blockading an entry to Shoalwater bay with a ‘tea and cake negotiation table’.

Their intention is to refuse bail because of harsh bail conditions and thus will spend the night in the watch house.

The Grannies, who are wearing 160 year-old Quaker bonnets set a table complete with flowers, tea and biscuits in front of the gate to share with soldiers as an invitation to engage in peaceful negotiation.

Quaker Helen Bayes says “Negotiation is not currently part of the war rehearsals, so we are drawing attention to this missing element. It is essential to achieve peace.

Former WA Senator Jo Valentine is one of the Grannies. She said “we are asking our soldiers: how do you think the Chinese view these war rehearsals? Do you think its helping our relationship with our biggest trading partner?”

Senator Scott Ludlam said in support of the Grannies:

“The ‘Quaker Grannies for Peace’ have 14 grandchildren between them and deeply care about the future of Australia and our region. The federal government should be working towards constructive and responsible international partnership, rather than participating in incendiary military exercises,” Senator Scott Ludlam, Australian Greens acting leader said today.

“I congratulate them for their nonviolent direct action which is intended to point the way to an independent and peaceful Australia.”

Four groups of peace activists who identify as ‘peace pilgrims’ protested the war exercises today.

One other group of Peace Pilgrims were found after two days trespassing in the live training area and are in police custody and being transported back to Rockhampton.

Two other groups of pilgrims are still at large.

The war rehearsals have been critiqued by experts in International Relations for military posturing in the face of increasing tensions and Peace Convergence is standing against the high costs of war and ‘sword waving’ at China that is the joint U.S./Australian / Japan / NZ Talisman Sabre war exercises.


@peaceconvergenc [13/7/15]:  BREAKING: Margaret (@pestoriusm) & Paulie in custody after 2 days trespassing. 2 other groups of #PeacePilgrims still at large.





The unknown soldier and the known soldier via @thereaIbanksy




LDP aims to have lower house vote for security bills on Thursday [Japan Today - 13/7/15]





Taxpayer funded roads and airstrips for empire doesn't make Australia "secure" - it turns us into sitting ducks. [North West Star - 13/7/15]:



… New upgrades for Northern Australia include a $600-million roads package, including the Hann Highway, and a $40 million airstrip package in remote Australia.

“We have got countries like the US and Singapore interested in using some of our facilities in the north so they are likely to be strategically more important than ever and, therefore, the infrastructure benefits those activities,” Mr Truss said.

A further long-term plan for the nation’s Defence Forces and the location of assets would be addressed in the Defence White Paper.

“Defence uses the road systems in particular, they use airports, they don’t use trains so much anymore now, but the defence of our country is heavily concentrated in the north and is likely to stay so,” Mr Truss said.

Federal Member for Kennedy Bob Katter believed Mount Isa would be an ideal location for a battalion and a drone base because of its inland position from the Gulf of Carpentaria, and because of its central position between Darwin and Townsville.






Peace activists enter live training area at Talisman Sabre to play a game of hide and seek




Peace Convergence Media Release [12/7/15]:


Invitations were mailed to General Smith two weeks ago to his Canberra address to watch out for the cat in the hat at Talisman Sabre military exercises.

By inviting General Smith to play hide-and-seek, the Cat in the Hat hopes to demonstrate that a serious message can be put across through good humour.

A peaceful game of hide-and-seek aims to disrupt the military’s ‘main game’ of war practice.

“Militarism is trampling on the lives of too many, while simultaneously making a huge contribution to the worsening problems of global pollution and climate change,” said the cat in the hat”

“The war rehearsals of Talisman Sabre send China a clear message. Australia is declaring itself to be a part of the US war machine. This means that Talisman Sabre brings war closer, thereby making every Australian less secure,” the cat said.

“If, through making a fool of myself, I manage to make anyone think about and question the true nature and value of the Australian/US alliance, it has been worth the effort,” the cat said.



‏@treenalenthall [13/7/15]:  



#quakergrannies arrested at shoalwater gates after cup of tea & chat about the #costofwar ...





Peaceful #quakergrannies arrested by police for saying no to war #costofwar #nomoreuswars [VIDEO]






‏@peaceconvergenc  [13/7/15]: 




Breaking: Quaker Grannies in bonnets blockade a road with a tea table for soldiers @Talisman Sabre war exercises.





This was the spread the #QuakerGrannies set out for the negotiation with soldiers. #PeaceWithChina







United States, "allies" continue bombing Iraq and Syria




Reuters [12/7/15]:




U.S.-led forces conducted 16 air strikes in Syria and 11 more in Iraq against Islamic State forces on Saturday, the Combined Joint Task Force leading the air operations said on Sunday.

In Syria, air strikes that were carried out using bomber, fighter-attack and drone aircraft were conducted near Al Hasakah, Ar Raqqah, Aleppo and Kobani, the statement said.

The statement said Syrian aircraft conducted air strikes within Ar Raqqah "near the time frame of coalition forces" that "were not coordinated with the coalition."

The statement said the nearest air strike by U.S.-led forces to Ar Raqqa's city center was 4.2 miles (6.75 km) away and targeted four bridges.

In Iraq, air strikes using attack, fighter-attack and drone aircraft were conducted near Al Huwayjah, Bayji, Falluja, Habbaniyah, Makhmur, Ramadi, Sinjar and Tal Afar, the statement said.



Baghdad car bombs and suicide attacks kill 35 – sources [Reuters – 12/7/15]





Blast damages 13th century citadel wall in Syria’s Aleppo [ARA News - 13/7/15]





10 Yemeni civilians killed in Saudi airstrike on Sana’a [Press TV - 12/7/15]







Four people were killed and 15 wounded when a rocket hit a residential district in the eastern Libyan port city of Benghazi on Sunday, medics said. ... [Ahram - 12/7/15]







At least 25 people have been killed in a suicide car bomb attack near a US military base in Afghanistan's Khost province, where Afghan and foreign soldiers are stationed, authorities say. ... [Al Jazeera - 12/7/15]







Israeli forces injure 2 Palestinians, arrest 1 in Shufat refugee camp [Maan - 12/7/15]







Israeli forces free Palestinian hunger striker Khader Adnan [Maan - 12/7/15]





Israeli police said Sunday they have arrested several Israeli suspects over an arson attack last month at a shrine where Christians believe Jesus performed the miracle of loaves and fishes.

The arson had sparked widespread condemnation and concern from Christians globally, with the site visited by some 5,000 people daily, while also drawing renewed attention to religiously linked hate crimes in Israel. ... [Ahram - 12/7/15]






Ukraine’s ultranationalist Right Sector in standoff with authorities [RT - 13/7/15]:

The OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) that arrived in Mukachevo to meet with authorities and observe SBU operations noted that Kiev is increasing its troops in the Carpathian region.

The team witnessed a “Ukrainian Armed Forces convoy moving towards Mukachevo, comprised of 11 APCs, two trucks loaded with soldiers and one fuel truck,” SMM said in a statement.

On their way to Mukachevo, the SMM observed heightened security measures, including several police checkpoints.

“At one such checkpoint, north of Mukachevo, about 2km from the alleged incident scene, the SMM saw the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) arriving, with 10 armored vans and two minibuses,” SMM said.

They added, that police delivered one dead body to the hospital while the SBU escorted two “seriously wounded persons.”

According to SMM, three civilians and three police who had been admitted on Saturday have been already discharged.







A lawyer for journalist Nicky Hager has told the High Court in Wellington that a police raid on Mr Hager's home trampled on measures in place to protect media freedom. ... [RNZI - 13/7/15]






The [Kenyan] National Intelligence Service (NIS) may have acquired a stealth surveillance system from controversial Italian-based company, Hacking Team, to intercept private communication and bring down websites deemed offensive to the government.

According to a trove of e-mails released by WikiLeaks — an online whistleblower that publishes secret information largely exposing government and corporate misconduct — the spy system enables NIS unfettered access to people’s information, infect and monitor computers and smartphones. … [Nation – 11/7/15]






Murdoch's PNG outlet reports local contractors want more of a say in Manus Island refugee death camp operations




RNZI [13/7/15]:



Local contractors in Papua New Guinea want more say in the running of Australia's asylum seeker detention centre on Manus Island.

The call comes with the current management company's contract expiring later this year.

The Post Courier "newspaper" reports Transfield is being pressured by local contractors such as Sunam Clean and Pehikoko waste management to let them into the facility operation.

The Transfield's operations manager Rick Murrow is reported as saying he is reluctant to award contracts to local companies because of ongoing political inteference.

Mr Murrow says Transfield already employs 400 locals while its subsidiary Wilson Security employs 700 PNG guards.

But local companies are saying this is not enough and are pushing for inclusion when the bidding opens for a new management company in four months time.





 Imaginary journalist to Peter Dutton:  When will Australia begin accepting UNHCR refugees again?





Imaginary journalist to Scott "fluffy" Morrison:  Why did you lie?




Imaginary journalist to the UNHCR:  Why did you agree to remain silent about Australia's ban on accepting refugees since October 2014?





Imaginary journalist to so called "opposition", Greens, crossbenchers, human rights and refugee support organisations:  Did you know about this ban, and do you agree with it?  If not, WHEN ARE YOU GOING TO EXPRESS THAT DISAGREEMENT AND HIGHLIGHT THE GOVERNMENT'S LIES?




Ireland may accept more refugees, says Taoiseach [Irish Times - 12/7/15]:

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has said consideration will be given to accommodating additional migrants who have travelled to Europe.

Ireland previously pledged to resettle more than three hundred Syrian refugees as part of an EU migrant scheme.

The Government’s Syrian humanitarian admission programme offered “temporary Irish residence to vulnerable persons from Syria or who have fled Syria to surrounding countries since the outbreak of the war in Syria” with family members who reside in Ireland.

During a visit to Cork over the weekend, Mr Kenny said given our history of coffin ships, Irish people have a natural empathy and understanding of the plight of migrants.

“There are two [issues] here: relocation and resettlement. In respect of the refugees from Syria we have already taken twice what was recommended that we should take.

“In respect of the new situation, these are people who are currently in Greece and Italy.

“Because of our tradition and our understanding of this from our own history, we will consider of course taking numbers of people who are currently in Italy and Greece.

“The Minister of Justice attended at the meeting in Luxembourg yesterday and the protocol would have to be approved first of all and then we would have to get consent from the House of the Oireachtas. While we are not obliged officially to participate in this, Ireland can make a decision to opt in.”

Mr Kenny said he was “very proud” of the crew of the LÉ Eithne, which has been rescuing migrants in the Mediterranean, adding there was something “quite emotional” about ships leaving to do humanitarian search-and-rescue work.

He commended the crew for the “wonderful effort” they made to save migrants in difficulties.

“This is something that is so real to Ireland’s history. I am sure the [LÉ] Niamh and its crew will do the same thing.”

Crew from the LÉ Eithne are preparing to return to Ireland after having saved almost 3,400 migrants trying to reach Europe in less than two months of patrols in the Mediterranean. The LÉ Niamh will now replace that vessel.

The decision to send the LÉ Eithne was taken earlier this year in response to the huge numbers of migrants dying as they fled war and economic deprivation and attempted to make it to Europe.

The EU plans to resettle 44,000 of those who made the risky sea crossing. It’s estimated a further 1,850 drowned so far this year attempting to get to southern Europe.

Of those rescued by the LÉ Eithne, 12 per cent each came from Eritrea and Nigeria, 11 per cent from Sudan and 9 per cent from Syria.

Other nationalities included Moroccans, Somalis, Ghanaians and Ethiopians.



Australian media continues censoring Senator Hanson-Young's trip on a boat saving refugees in the Mediterranean.


 We've just sent the cam- copter out from the boat to search more closely to see if there's anyone needing help


‏"tweeted" by @sarahinthesen8 -Senator Sarah Hanson-Young [12/7/15]

Exiled to nowhere: Award-winning photographer captures Rohingya suffering [Anadolu Agency – 12/7/15]:




... “Inside Burma [Myanmar], the conditions the Rohingya live in are quite like apartheid... They are confined to one geographic area; they can’t come, they can’t go… They receive very little medical assistance or education for their children,” he adds. ...



God and Uncle Sam wants you to stay where you are and accept your fate. 



Here, have a toilet and some craft lessons you ingrates:  Refugees trying to escape creepy god bothering ghetto, apprehended and disciplined by authorities, "volunteers" and NGOs.




In your backyard Australia. [Phuketwan - 12/7/15]:




... Reacting quickly, local anti-trafficking volunteers and police followed the shelter staff into the plantation in the rain and apprehended the young women, most of whom are still teenagers.

They had been at the shelter for between six months and eight weeks, awaiting determination by NGOs for placements in a third country.


To prevent future escapes, staff at the shelter hope to establish a 24-hour watch by a much-acclaimed group of local volunteers in the neighboring town of Takuapa.

In October the volunteers set up a 24-hour checkpoint on the main coast road. The unique ''human trafficking checkpoint'' is credited with cutting the traffickers' main route south after years of lax enforcement.

The Rotary Club of Patong has become deeply concerned about the welfare of the women and children in the shelter north of Phuket and is helping them to learn crafts and establish a vegetable garden.

Under the Youthline project, a large group of college students from Salt Lake City in Utah has been working for weeks with Patong Rotary to provide practical solutions to enhance the lives of Burmese families in the region, as well as the stateless and forlorn Rohingya.

Patong Rotary president Brad Kenny, who led a previous project that helped the impoverished sea gypsies further north off Ranong to gain proper toilets, electricity and water supplies, is setting high standards in caring for the Andaman's most needy.

Practical solutions that accept the difference between cultures are now being applied.

The American students were able to give the women sanitary kits and training in how to use the washable and environmentally-friendly necessities.

Earlier in the day, a group from Saudi Arabia generously provided washing machines and other gifts.




Position Vacant - Face to Face Program Assistant - Travel:  Applicants concerned about the plight of the Rohingya, the incarceration and exile of refugees on Nauru and Manus Island, or that Australia hasn't accepted UNHCR refugees since October 2014 need not apply.









Human Rights Watch [13/7/15]:


... The 53 page report, “One Passport, Two Systems: China’s Restrictions on Foreign Travel by Tibetans and Others,” shows the evolution of a discriminatory two-track system for passports applications: a fast-track system is available in areas that are largely populated by the country’s ethnic Chinese majority, but only a slow-track system is allowed for those in most ethnic and religious minority areas.

As of October 2014, less than 10 percent of prefecture-level administrations were still required to use the slow-track passport application system; with one exception, all were areas with substantial Tibetan or Muslim populations.






China's Foreign Ministry has lodged a protest with the United States for its condemnation of the deportation of a group of Uighurs from Thailand last week, as state television showed pictures of some being returned with hoods on their heads. ... [Channel News Asia - 12/7/15]





Work and Holiday visa a hit on Chinese social media [Protected and Unaccountable Assistant Minister for Immigration Media Release - 6/7/15]:


The Work and Holiday visa programme has received an overwhelming reception in China following the announcement of 5000 visa places for young Chinese nationals c​oming to Australia.

On Wednesday in Beijing, the Assistant Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash participated in a one hour online live chat discussion with Chinese young people about the Work and Holiday visa arrangement with China.





After slavery, trafficked fishermen from Myanmar and Cambodia face lonely road to recovery [Khmer Times – 12/7/15]


An ethnically Vietnamese community that has lived on the water in Phnom Penh for decades is given three weeks notice to cut their houses loose. [VIDEO - Phnom Penh Post – 8/7/15]



In Tijuana, Mexicans deported by the US struggle to find ‘home’ [National Geographic – 21/11/14]:



... In the last five years, the United States has deported record numbers of immigrants, including roughly 250,000 to 300,000 each year to Mexico. Mexico has 15 repatriation points, but one-third of all deportees are usually sent to Baja California, and half come through Tijuana—from 100 to 300 every day, officials here say.

On Thursday, President Barack Obama announced a reprieve for more than 4 million immigrants in the United States illegally, primarily parents of children who are citizens or legal residents. The step, which the president said he took because Congress has failed to act, will slow deportations to Mexico. But it comes too late for Gomez and others already in Tijuana.






Australia is responsible for this: Nauru opposition MPs to spend another week in custody awaiting lawyer


RNZI [13/7/15]:

Two opposition MPs on Nauru are spending another week in custody as they continue to battle for legal representation.

The MPs, former president Sprent Dabwido and Squire Jeremiah, have been charged in connection with an anti-government protest outside parliament last month.

They appeared in court on Friday for their second attempt to secure bail, but the men do not have access to a lawyer on the island.

A pleader, who provides some legal support, returns to the island today, but a source on Nauru says the MPs have rejected his representation.

Mr Dabwido and Mr Jeremiah want a lawyer who is based in Australia to represent them, but the Nauru Government continues to refuse him a visa.

They have asked the Supreme Court to rule on their right to a lawyer of their choice, and will appear in court on Friday for their next bail hearing.




Australian media enthusiastically promote protected and unaccountable Scott “Fluffy” Morrison's austerity regime ---> Rejections soar as disability pension crackdown hits [West Australian – 13/7/15]




... He’s exposed the entire EU structure as a bag of bones, let alone a naked emperor.  ... [Tsipras invites Schäuble to fall into his own sword - The Automatic Earth - 12/7/15]







@M_Flohr [12/7/15]:   #Syntagma still saying #oxi 2 Troika's authoritarian austerity & attempt 2 undermine Greek democracy. #ThisIsACoup





Austerity Has Failed: An Open Letter From Thomas Piketty to Angela Merkel  [The Nation - 7/7/15]




For many Greeks and meanwhile Eurosceptic Europeans, it is a power game against Greece, aiming to destroy the country and humiliate its democratically elected government.

Eurogroup Draft: EURO Leaders capitulate to Schaeuble and threaten Greece with “time out”  [Keep Talking Greece - 12/7/15]:

It is one of Greece’s most dramatic nights: Euro-Leaders continue talks with Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras demanding from Greece the stars, the sky and the sea In fact everything, literally everything what the previous governments since 2010 have failed to implement. Everything, even the small letter of Memorandum of Understanding I and II and even some ideas Germany had some years ago, like the Trust Fund.

Many of the MoU I and II demands were proposed by the International Monetary Fund, others carry the signature of Germany and Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble.

And they threaten Greece with ‘time out’ – a temporary exit from the Euro – exactly as Schaeuble dreamed of.






Dr Schäuble’s Plan for Europe: Do Europeans approve?, Yanis Varoufakis [13/7/15]




13 July 2015