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Issue No. 166 14 February 2003  

A Call To Arms
Workers Online returns from our summer break to face a world on the brink, the structures of global cooperation being crushed by the iron will of the earth�s last remaining superpower.


Interview: Agenda 2003
ACTU secretary Greg Combet looks at the year ahead and how a union movement can keep the focus on the workplace at a time of global crisis.

Peace: The Colour Purple
Local communities across Australia are taking stands against war by displaying purple banners. Jim Marr visits one.

Industrial: Long, Hot Summer
As Workers Online took its annual break, the world kept turning � at an increasingly alarming velocity.

Solidarity: Workers Against War
Joann Wypijewski reports on how union locals in the USA are fighting the hounds of war at home.

Security: Howard And The Hoodlums
With all the talk of terror, the Howard Government�s Achilles heel is its tolerance of Flags of Convenience shipping , writes Rowan Cahill

International: Industrial Warfare
Scottish freight train drivers have already acted to disrupt the war effort in the UK with crews of four freight trains carrying war supplies to ports walking off the job, writes Andrew Casey

History: Unions and the Vietnam War
The Vietnam experience steered some unions towards social activism for the first time. Unions are today key players in the anti-war movement, writes Tony Duras.

Review: Eight Miles to Mowtown
Mark Hebblewhites looks at two summer movies that tap into different sounds of American culture - white boy rap and motown blues.

Poetry: Return To Sender
Resident bard Divd Peetz discovers that Elvis has become the latest shock recruit to the peace cause.

Satire: CIA Recruits New Intake of Future Enemies
CIA Director George Tenet announced today that the agency has begun recruiting future enemies for the year 2014.


 The Cuffe Link � Taxpayers Cough Up

 Carr: Secret Lib Plan to Slash Public Sector

 Abbott Comes Out Swinging

 Thanks a Million: Cole�s Lawyers Clean-up

 Corrigan Dogs On Jobs Promise

 Gnomes Fess Up � Unionism Best For All

 Owens Survives 30-Year Ban

 Ribs and Rumps Something for Government to Chew On

 Badges of Honour

 Guards Rail Against Assaults

 Workers Online Scoops Global Prize

 Currawong Must Pay It�s Way

 Let�s Get Real! 2nd Australasian Organising Conference

 Guard Knocked Out in Villawood Escape

 Activists Notebook


The Soapbox
Getting On with The Job
Premier Bob Carr chose Trades Hall as the venue to launch Labor's IR policy for the upcoming state election.

Justice in Bogota
Sydney lawyer Ian Latham knows how to pick them. He�s gone straight from the Cole Royal Commission to justice Colombian-style.

The Locker Room
Heart Of Darkness
There is a school of thought that there is, in fact, only one World Cup - and it doesn�t involve cricket, writes Phil Doyle.

Danger Mouse
John Howard's politics have trapped him into supporting an unpopular war. He is in political trouble, Leonie Bronstein argues.

 Bouquets and Brickbats
 War Talk
 A Tale of Two Malls
 Talk Back Tom
 On The Beach
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Activists Notebook

Union Choir Needs Help

The Sydney Trade Union Choir is looking for volunteers to assist in the maintenance of its website, and to help train its members in monitoring and updating the site themselves.

The site at was set up last year in conjunction with the launch of the choir's first official CD However, lack of IT skills among the choir members has not allowed it to aid in the promotion of its performances and message of inspiration and strength through song.

Anyone interested can contact the choir via Joel Beasant at [email protected]

All help which allows the message of the choir to grow in recognition is appreciated.

The Choir meets at the PSA building at 160 Clarence St, each Tuesday from 6-8pm.




5.00 pm Wednesday February 26

With Professor Douglas Henderson

Asbestos disease is reaching epidemic proportions in Australia.

Skin cancer is an increasing problem for outdoor workers.

Union representatives will be speaking with the world-renowned mesothelioma expert, Prof Douglas Henderson.

The Asbestos Diseases Foundation (adfa Inc) and The Newcastle Trades Hall Council are supporting the event.

ADFA will be there to advise on rights and options for victims of asbestos disease and their families. Health professionals will talk on treatment and support services. There will be time for questions after the speakers.

This is important for people who have worked with asbestos in factories, in the construction industries, on the waterfront, at sea or just doing renovations at home. Even washing clothes covered in asbestos dust can lead to asbestos disease.

5.00 pm Wednesday February 26

Newcastle Trades Hall Council Meeting Room

Ground Floor, Devonshire House, 406 King Street, Newcastle.

Refreshments will be served

Please let us know on 02 9637 8759 or 0414 893 826 if you can come



An NCOSS Conference exploring the role of community welfare organizations in seeking changes to the policies and practices of Government.

Wednesday 12th March 2003

Masonic Centre, cnr Castlereagh and Goulburn Sts, Sydney

Seeking changes to the policies and practices of Government is a fundamental role for community welfare organisations. This systemic advocacy role is increasingly under threat through funding pressures, economic rationalism, and changing relationships between community organisations and Government agencies.

This conference re-examines why community organisations engages in systemic advocacy, and investigates some recent union and community sector campaigns, both the wins and the ongoing battles. It considers the place of systemic advocacy in social capital debates, and whether contemporary advocacy is undertaken 'with' or 'for' consumers. It debates the role of unions in community advocacy, and whether the growth in community participation processes is helping or hindering advocacy work. It also includes practical discussions about using the media, developing strategies, and managing relationships with politicians.

This conference is for community organisations, consumers, unions and

policy makers.

For more information:

ph: (02) 9211 2599


Women of Troy

An anti-war play by Euripides.

Directed by Robert Kennedy and Jenny Green . With Jeanette Cronin.

Belvoir St Downstairs Theatre

Preview Wed 29th. 30th Jan to 16th Feb

Tues 7pm Wed-Sat 8.15pm Sun 5pm

Tickets: $25 Adult $19 concession. (Group Bookings of 6 or more $19)

Jan 29th preview $17. Pay what you can Tuesdays (Min $5)

Bookings: 02 9699 3444 or (+7% for Online Bookings)

For enquiries please email: [email protected]

August 2004. A refugee camp in the shadow of a bombed out city. The coast of the Persian Gulf: Troy. The West have won the war and have sent in a commander to liquidate the camp. The mothers, wives and children of the dead don't know where they will go. All they can do is wait. How much does victory cost?

Robert Kennedy and Jenny Green's Women of Troy is an unashamed protest against the impending US-led war in the Middle East.



x3 Public meetings in March, Research Initiative on International Activism + Sydney Social Forum

6.00-8.30pm at the Great Hall, UTS Tower, Broadway. Entry by donation, Disabled Access.

/Human Rights/

Monday, 10 March

Supported by AidWatch + Indonesia Solidarity

Nurdin Abdul Rahman: twice imprisoned Human Rights advocate and academic from Aceh, Indonesia, with the Aceh-based organisation, 'Rehabilitation Action for Torture Victims'.

Olga Havnen: of Western Arrernte descent, from Tennant Creek, has a longstanding involvement in international human rights and Indigenous rights issues, including the National Indigenous Working Group, the Central Land Council, the Fred Hollows Foundation.

Carmen Lawrence: ALP MP, federal Member for Fremantle, former Shadow Minister and prominent critic of the Government's policy of mandatory detention for refugees.


Thursday, 20 March

Supported by Greenpeace Australia Pacific + Mineral Policy Institute

Jacqui Katona: : member of the Djok Aboriginal clan, former executive officer of the Gundjehmi Aboriginal Corporation which campaigned against the proposed Jabiluka uranium mine.

Anuradha Mittal: with 'Food First', campaigning for global food security. Originally from India, Anuradha is heavily involved in the global movement against Genetically-Engineered food.

Helena Norberg-Hodge: from Sweden, heads the International Society for Ecology and Culture, is co-founder of the International Forum on Globalisation and the Global Eco-village Network.


Monday 24 March

Supported by Labor Council of NSW + Walk Against the War Coalition

William Blum: anti-war journalist from the USA with Znet; author of 'Rogue State, a "mini-encyclopaedia" of US intervention around the world, 'Killing Hope' and 'West-Bloc Dissident'.

Karen Flick: a community activist who has campaigned against Black Deaths in Custody, and is currently engaged in establishing training and development programs with Aboriginal communities.

Maree O'Halloran: President of the NSW Teachers Federation, with a teaching career spanning city and country schools; in 2002 the Federation unanimously opposed the War on Iraq, calling for an end to sanctions on non-military assistance.

Tom Uren: former federal ALP Member for Reid; Minister in the Whitlam and Hawke Governments; an active member of the left wing of the ALP, opposed the Vietnam War, conscription and nuclear testing, and today, against the war on Iraq.

For further information on the speakers see: (click on 'new') + Sydney Social Forum,



Apheda Fundraiser

You are invited to a fundraising dinner for humanitarian projects in

Palestine and with Palestinian refugees in Lebanon.

Speaker Ms Abla Masrujeh, Women's Officer of the Palestinian Federation of

Trade Unions

When : Monday 24th February 7:00 PM

Where : Summerland Restaurant

741 Punchbowl Rd Punchbowl

Cost : $40 /$35con

For more information or to R.S.V.P contact Sawiyan by 20th February 2003

Tel: (02) 8572 6052

E-mail: [email protected]

Funds raised on the night will be channelled through Union Aid

Abroad-APHEDA and will go to humanitarian projects in Palestine and

Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon.

Marj O'Callaghan

National Program Manager

Union Aid Abroad-APHEDA

Tel: +61 2 9264 9343

Fax: +61 2 9261 1118


Re-thinking politics for the new millenium: beyond left and right'

A paper by David McKnight, UTS

This paper will discuss the book David is writing which examines the state of the Left and radical social movements, their political ideas and the need for a fundamental re-think. Some of the ideas I will be discussing are similar to those in Eric Aaron's just-published book, 'What's Right?'

Sponsored by the Research Initiative on International Activism

Thursday, 20 February, 1-3pm

Room 432,

Bon Marche Building,

Corner of Harris and Broadway (NB: entry through Harris St, lift to 4th floor)


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