keywords: Soviet Union

  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Militarising the Moon

    • Barry Gittins
    • 17 April 2019
    2 Comments

    This journey outwards is threatened by demagoguery. The UN's treaty declaring 'celestial bodies shall be used exclusively for peaceful purposes' has been challenged by sabre-rattling by Donald Trump, with his declaration that 'it is not enough to have American presence in space; we must have American dominance'.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Budget 2019 boosts inequality

    • John Falzon
    • 03 April 2019
    13 Comments

    The much trumpeted projected budget surplus is built on the backs of people who are left out and often made to feel that they are left over, surplus to the economy: people on low pay or no pay, young people, sole parents, people experiencing homelessness, people living with a disability.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Here's Fraser Anning's final solution 'context'

    • Brian Matthews
    • 21 August 2018
    14 Comments

    The desperate, semi-literate plea that one has been taken 'out of context' is the first resort of many politicians challenged for being indelicate, stupid etc. It is its own condemnation. The latest appeal to contextual sensitivity though, that of Anning in ducking the implications of the phrase 'final solution', deserves some contextualising.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Among the ghosts of Chernobyl

    • Catherine Marshall
    • 15 August 2018
    5 Comments

    The earthworms and bees were the first to know, wrote Nobel laureate and Belarusian native Svetlana Alexievich. The bees stayed in their hives; the worms buried themselves so deep that fishermen digging for bait on the banks of the Pripyat River were perplexed that they couldn't find any. The humans were slower to learn.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Witness K and foreign interference hypocrisy

    • Lizzie O'Shea
    • 03 July 2018
    10 Comments

    Over this last week, two remarkably contradictory things happened in Canberra. The Attorney-General shepherded through some of the most significant changes to foreign interference laws in recent times. It was also reported that he signed off on charges laid against Witness K, a former officer of ASIS, and his lawyer.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Anti-communism in the Liberal Party from Menzies to Turnbull

    • Evan Smith
    • 01 September 2017
    12 Comments

    Earlier this year, Turnbull made a speech in London where he called for the Liberal Party to return to its ideological base as laid out by Sir Robert Menzies. Turnbull suggested that the Liberal Party under Menzies was the socially conservative party that many on the LNP's right wish it to be, but it seems that what the Liberals have taken from the Menzies era is a revival of anti-communist rhetoric.

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  • RELIGION

    Citizenship and the Common Good

    • Frank Brennan
    • 30 August 2017
    6 Comments

    'There was one controversy in which Lionel Bowen was involved that does provide good lessons for the contemporary Catholic considering the desirable law or social policy on a contested issue - lessons for the citizen weighing what is for the common good. Back in 1979 there was debate in the Parliament on a motion which was framed to stop Medicare funding of abortions. Bowen, a strict Catholic, was strongly opposed to the motion. He did not think the motion was about abortion. He thought it was about money.' Frank Brennan's 2017 Lionel Bowen Lecture

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Empathy for Russia after Trump's ascent

    • Justin Glyn
    • 15 November 2016
    6 Comments

    If a failure of empathy marks our understanding of internal politics, its effects are magnified, with even worse results, in the international arena. A classic example is Russia. Since the fall of the Soviet Union, the west has failed to take Russian interests seriously. I endorse neither the present Russian government nor its point of view. However, knowing that the other side has a point of view and what it is is vital in avoiding miscalculations. You don't get a second chance with nuclear weapons.

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  • RELIGION

    Rise of the celebrity pope

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 08 September 2016
    7 Comments

    Popes are politically significant because they lead a large international church that is present in many nations. The teaching, interests and opinions of popes affect the way bishops and priests act, and so influence Catholic attitudes. More recently, popes have also become celebrities. Their influence on public opinion, in wider society and in the Church, is increasingly personal. As a result the way individual popes understand and express their faith will shape the possibilities for their political influence.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Time to come to grips with life after US dominance

    • Tony Kevin
    • 09 November 2015
    8 Comments

    The US unipolar moment is ending. Real multipolarity is upon us, with Russia, China, India, Brazil, South Africa and Iran testing new multipolar arrangements for sharing world power. The US fears these changes, and would prefer to corral everybody back into the familiar bipolar camps of the past. This would be a disaster. Australia will benefit from a stable rules-based multipolar world, and our foreign policy can help build it. But we are going to have to take a few calculated risks along the way.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Pitfalls of Putin troops in Syria

    • Justin Glyn
    • 06 October 2015
    6 Comments

    The Syrian government are no angels, and any more bombing raids on an already heavily bombed and traumatised population is unlikely to improve the situation for civilians. However, the American claim that the Russians have a poor record in this respect smacks of hypocrisy, given the US's admitted destruction last week of a Médecins Sans Frontières hospital in Afghanistan at the cost of 22 lives. Moscow's policy at least has the merits of legality, intelligibility and consistency.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The emptiness of reform rhetoric in Australian politics

    • Jeff Sparrow
    • 08 September 2015
    4 Comments

    The recent National Reform Summit was lauded as an attempt to 'rediscover the art of reform that in the past generation helped to drive high living standards and made Australia the envy among smart nations'. Yet the urgency with which Australian pundits demand 'reform' corresponds with a peculiar opacity about what the term actually means, with its past association with the socialist movement but more recent appropriation as a neoliberal mantra. 

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