keywords: Laos

  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The last year

    • Diane Fahey
    • 19 January 2016
    2 Comments

    They'd stopped by then, your half-filled crosswords with their fey surmises — inspired leaps from the backs of routine clues ... I glimpsed alcoves of dusty treasure: kris — 'Malayan dagger'; obi — 'a Japanese sash'; écus — 'old French coins'. You summoned bird names from the air: rhea, erne; had the secrets of ponds and streams at your fingertips: eft, orfe, elver ... 'open', 'small seeds'; six letters. You would have got that.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Joe Hockey's 'better bang' foreign aid cut delusion

    • Michael Mullins
    • 18 May 2015
    38 Comments

    As a nation, we have demonstrated to the world that we have no shame when it comes to the treatment of asylum seekers. Now it's as if the aid cuts are being worn as a badge of honour. Joe Hockey talks about the 'targeted outcomes' philosophy of the cuts, 'build[iing] the prosperity and assist[ing] with poverty alleviation in our region', in order to get 'better bang for our buck in foreign aid'. But leading aid economist Stephen Howse argues the opposite.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    A hostile government could be the ABC's best friend

    • Michael Mullins
    • 06 October 2014
    14 Comments

    ABC management is compliant with the Government in foreshadowing cuts to programs it considers expensive and expendable, thereby shielding the minister from public criticism and from having to justify the blood-letting. Perhaps it need not bother doing the Government’s dirty work, as Essential polling has revealed that a majority of Australians is worried about cuts to the public broadcaster. If the government is more driven by polls than ideology, it will go easy on the ABC.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    China’s asylum hypocrisy

    • Nik Tan
    • 28 February 2014
    1 Comment

    This week China criticised Australia's treatment of asylum seekers. The criticism, raised at a bilateral human rights dialogue, is good politics: China is using Australia's cruel and inhumane asylum policy as diplomatic leverage. Nevertheless, it is astounding hypocrisy from a country that returns refugees to danger, including to North Korea, a state infamous for its widespread violations of human rights.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Small stories of redemption in Laos

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 29 August 2013

    A psychologically scarred war veteran struts about dressed as James Brown. An annual 'rocket' festival sees men celebrate explosives, in a country riddled with unspent American bombs. And a ten-year-old boy, who is accused by his grandmother of being a bad luck charm, sets out to prove that he is not to blame for the tragedies his family has endured.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The politics of suicide

    • Gillian Bouras
    • 02 May 2012
    14 Comments

    Albert Camus said suicide was the one serious philosophical problem in that it poses the question as to whether life is worth living. Some suicides are a private solution to anger and despair, but others, such as suicide bombings and the recent suicide of retired pharmacist Dimitris Christoulas, are both public and coercive.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Thirty years of Jesuit Refugee Service

    • Mark Raper
    • 17 November 2010
    3 Comments

    May I tell you about one refugee whom I met during the 20 years I lived and worked JRS? The story has no happy outcome, indeed far from it. But it may help to communicate some of the feelings that inspire many who accompany the refugees.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    In Thailand, the land of snarls

    • Simon Roughneen
    • 24 May 2010

    Standing amid the burnt-out ruins of southeast Asia's second biggest shopping mall, it becomes clear the Land of Smiles has become a land of snarls. The uncompromising quashing of the anti-government redshirt rally by the Thai army may have sown the seeds for more conflict later on.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Thai airport protesters' victory short-lived

    • Nicholas Farrelly and Andrew Walker
    • 04 December 2008

    The protesters who occupied Bangkok's airports are claiming victory in their political battle, following the Constitutional Court's dissolution of the ruling party. But this is far from the end. The government is down, but not out.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Hmong refugees' scant Aussie hope

    • Joanna Maxwell
    • 20 June 2008

    This week the Refugee Council of Australia marks Refugee Week and World Refugee Day. At Petchabun camp, 350 kilometres north of Bangkok, thousands of 'forgotten' Hmong refugees remain in limbo. Their future looks bleak.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    A key role for Australia in Burma's democratisation

    • Tony Kevin
    • 09 January 2008
    2 Comments

    China's role in Burma is pivotal. Under a Rudd Government, Australia would have the expertise and standing to persuade China that its interests lie in persuading Burma's generals to soften their opposition to democracy. From 18 October 2007.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    A key role for Australia in Burma's democratisation

    • Tony Kevin
    • 17 October 2007

    – China's role in Burma is pivotal. Under a Rudd Government, Australia would have the expertise and standing to persuade China that its interests lie in persuading Burma's generals to soften their opposition to democracy.

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