Search Results: Assad

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Where it all went wrong for Islam

    • Tim Mayfield
    • 15 October 2014
    11 Comments

    Actor Ben Affleck was only partly right in his recent take-down of conservative US pundits Bill Maher and Sam Harris for their perceived 'Islamaphobia'. The reality is that there is a battle for the heart and soul of Islam that has been playing out around the globe since the 60s and 70s. It is therefore only natural that an ideology that rejects the failed colonial paradigm of nation-states and instead promotes the grand vision of a resurrected caliphate is compelling to many.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Just like the original TPV only nastier

    • Kerry Murphy
    • 01 October 2014
    14 Comments

    Last week, Immigration Minister Scott Morrison proposed migration law changes that he said would speed up processing of the backlog of refugee claims, and allow asylum seekers to 'get on with their lives'. In fact they do nothing of the sort. The new temporary protection visa (TPV) denies family sponsorship, travel to visit family, and more.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Identifying the enemy in confused Iraq and Syria

    • Kerry Murphy
    • 23 September 2014
    4 Comments

    We have adopted the dictum that our enemy's enemy is our friend. But the situation changes so rapidly on the ground, and working out who our 'allies' are is a very difficult and high risk activity. We are not even clear on the Rumsfeldian known unknowns, let alone the unknown unknowns.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Hervey Bay boat arrival from Ireland

    • Frank Brennan
    • 22 September 2014
    5 Comments

    Considering my indebtedness to the two Aborigines who met [my family's ship arriving in Hervey Bay from Ireland] 151 years ago, I owe it to all my fellow Australians to agitate these issues of law, morality and politics here in Ireland so that back in Australia, the homeland which, in my religious tradition, was known as the Great South Land of the Holy Spirit.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    What are we walking into in Iraq?

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 15 September 2014
    7 Comments

    President Obama's decision to take military action against ISIL forces in Iraq and Syria has been applauded. But it should give us pause that this is the outcome desired and provoked by ISIL itself.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    High noon for Government refugee policy

    • Kerry Murphy
    • 12 September 2014
    12 Comments

    There may not be simple solutions to complex issues such as how to reduce the risk of travel by boat without punishing the refugees. However, the High Court's latest decision reminds us there are people involved and they are not ‘outlaws’.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Abbott's foreign policy flops

    • Tony Kevin
    • 12 September 2014
    11 Comments

    Since Richard Casey was External Affairs Minister in the 1950s, the three pillars of Australian foreign policy have been: a genuine reaching out to our Asian neighbours, adherence to UN-based multilateral values and institutions, and a firm but self-respecting defence partnership with the United States. All those pillars look pretty shaken now.

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  • RELIGION

    Picking on Muslims is getting dull

    • Ruby Hamad
    • 12 September 2014
    22 Comments

    The readiness with which some westerners take the most violent and extreme groups as legitimate expressions of Islam betrays the racism that underpins perceptions of Muslims. Whether I like it or not, my religious background and my name tie me to these 'jihadists.' I feel the permanent weight of expectation to publicly apologise for their actions.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Telling good Kurds from bad

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 05 September 2014
    4 Comments

    A debate about arming, and reinforcing the Kurds, is not an open and shut case. European powers and the United States draw the false distinction that there are good Islamic militants and bad ones, with the bad ones supposedly against the Western military program. The game of backing and supporting misunderstood – and dangerous – groups persists.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Sowing dragon's teeth in Iraq

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 28 August 2014
    19 Comments

    The vagueness of what is envisaged in the call for military action against the Islamic State makes it difficult to establish whether the harm caused would be proportionate to the good achieved.The record is not good suggesting strongly that Western military intervention will make things worse.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    An elusive peace in Ukraine

    • Tony Kevin
    • 26 August 2014
    6 Comments

    My optimism in previous essays on Ukraine continues to be undermined by the remarkable capacity of all players in this tragic drama – the government in Kiev, the rebels in East Ukraine, and their respective backers in NATO and Moscow – to dig in stubbornly and refuse to compromise goals in this now very nasty civil war.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Flag-waving foolishness that divides

    • Tony Kevin
    • 25 August 2014
    18 Comments

    Team Australia postulates that the world is a competitive environment of nations that win or lose. You have to choose your primary loyalty or affiliation: 'He who is not with us is against us'. The more one unpacks the term Team Australia, the nastier it gets. 

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