Search Results: Assad

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  • AUSTRALIA

    When legitimate criticism hurts

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 21 August 2014
    17 Comments

    Antisemitism and racism are rightly considered shameful. Those accused of these things usually deny the charges vehemently. Declaring critics of the actions or policies of, say, the Zimbabwe or the Israeli government, to be racist or antisemitic should be called for the bullying it is. Prejudice needs to be demonstrated, not asserted. 

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Signs that East Ukraine has averted mass human tragedy

    • Tony Kevin
    • 11 August 2014
    12 Comments

    On Sunday morning Australian time, we learned that the destructive civil war raging in East Ukraine seemed to be drawing to a close, essentially on Kiev’s terms. It appears that the tense test of wills between Russia and the West generated by the crisis, which briefly last week risked a wider war, has ended in a tacit backdown by Moscow.  

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Mixed messages undermine western solidarity with Gaza

    • Raff Piccolo
    • 06 August 2014
    16 Comments

    There are messages of support for Palestinians suffering in Gaza. But for every 'condemnation' that is directed at Israel by the President of the United States, the same speech always refers to the 'inherent right of Israel to defend itself'. However well intentioned, the sentiments are being used by Israel to justify all its actions in Gaza.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Christians and Muslims exchange Middle East kindness

    • Ruby Hamad
    • 01 August 2014
    5 Comments

    As an Arab-Australian it's difficult to watch the events in Syria, Iraq and Gaza without a sense of guilt and shame. To outside eyes, it must appear that the Middle East is driven by hatred and bloodlust. In fact there is a long history of persecuted members of one Middle Eastern faith finding safety in the places of worship of those that are often cast as their enemies. This is the Middle East, at once unconscionably cruel and unbearably kind.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Ukraine endgame?

    • Tony Kevin
    • 31 July 2014
    11 Comments

    The shooting down of MH17 by insurgent anti-aircraft missiles has now been swallowed up in the wider drama of the fierce civil war raging in Ukraine's pro-Russian eastern region. On 24 July, the International Committee of the Red Cross proclaimed Ukraine to be in a state of civil war, appealing to all those involved to respect the humanitarian rules of war or face later indictment as war criminals. The burning question now is, what will Putin's Russia do?

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Australia's diplomatic role amid MH17 fallout

    • Tony Kevin
    • 22 July 2014
    11 Comments

    Initially I was uneasy about Abbott's strong anti-Putin rhetoric. Why was Australia so upfront, so early? I thought he was jumping to conclusions too soon. It is clear now though that his response was based on the same satellite imagery intelligence that John Kerry and Hilary Clinton cite as evidence that it was a Russian missile fired from Russian-supported insurgent territory. He was right, and Bill Shorten is correct to support him.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    A case of the Ramadan blues

    • Irfan Yusuf
    • 11 July 2014
    12 Comments

    We’re in Ramadan, a time when you’re supposed to be nicer than you normally are. In recent times my mob hasn’t received much niceness from certain quarters. Some of the nasties have been inspired by hysteria related to a proposal to build a mosque in Bendigo. I’m not quite sure what Bendigo’s largely university-based Muslim community did to deserve so much vitriol. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Australia supplying alleged refugee persecutors

    • Kerry Murphy
    • 11 July 2014
    6 Comments

    While Immigration Minister Scott Morrison sits with Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa and hands over customs vessels to the Sri Lankan Government for use in preventing people escaping Sri Lanka, Australia's High Court is deciding whether a group of 158 Sri Lankan asylum seekers can be returned to the Sri Lankan Government. How did we get to the stage where we are supplying the alleged persecutors with the means of stopping people from escaping and seeking our protection?

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Australia should be worried about a Prabowo presidency

    • Pat Walsh
    • 07 July 2014
    3 Comments

    Both candidates for Indonesia's 9 July presidential election – Jokowi and Prabowo – have said Australia does not seem to trust Indonesia, but they would continue President SBY’s good neighbour policy. Prabowo later repeated this assurance to the media and diplomats. His message is that Australia and the international community have nothing to worry about from a Prabowo presidency. The prospects are very different. 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Hillary Clinton's bloodless memoir

    • Barry Gittins
    • 04 July 2014
    2 Comments

    This was akin to reading a carefully vetted resume. An intelligent and formidable first lady, senator and Secretary of State, and no shrinking violet, the author presents a largely passionless, desiccated record. There's the odd poignant reflection. Absurd depictions of Mel Brooksian secure rooms (and the reading of documents with a blanket over her head in non-secure rooms). But, overall, Clinton draws pictures without drawing blood.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    High Court backs ministerial power over asylum seekers

    • Kerry Murphy
    • 20 June 2014
    6 Comments

    Over the last few years the High Court has made several decisions which found the Government wanting when making decisions regarding asylum seekers. Inevitably the cases are decided on the basis of whether a power was correctly applied or interpreted. Sometimes the results favoured asylum seekers, sometimes they upheld the position of the Government. A case this week in which the applicant lost may have significant consequences.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Let's be good neighbours with Timor

    • Frank Brennan
    • 21 May 2014
    10 Comments

    In 2006 Australia and Timor Leste hastily signed the Treaty on Certain Maritime Arrangements in the Timor Sea (CMATS) at a time of considerable political instability in Timor. After last year's revelation of evidence of Australian spying on the Timorese during the negotiation of CMATS, the Timorese decided to challenge its validity, and in March this year they had a spectacular win in the International Court of Justice that caused great embarrassment to Australia.

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