Keywords: Soviet

  • INTERNATIONAL

    The baleful life of Stalin's favourite actress

    • Brian Matthews
    • 31 January 2014
    7 Comments

    When her husband was arrested and imprisoned indefinitely as an outspoken opponent of Stalin, she became depressed and alcoholic. Film director Grigori Aleksandrov rescued her by choosing her to star in Moscow Laughs. She became his mistress, later his wife, a screen star and, perhaps most important of all, she attracted Stalin's benign attention.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    International law cannot justify attack on Syria

    • Justin Glyn
    • 30 August 2013
    7 Comments

    For the second time in a little over ten years, the US and its allies seem about to launch hostilities against an Arab country on the basis of the possession or use of chemical weapons. They have made clear that while they may seek a Security Council resolution, they do not consider themselves bound by it. This is worrying.

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  • RELIGION

    Irrational fear of the Muslim Brotherhood

    • Irfan Yusuf
    • 21 August 2013
    9 Comments

    It’s a crude and misleading line of reasoning to declare that Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood can’t be committed to democracy because it is an Islamist organisation much like al-Qaida and Hezbollah. On what basis do we label individuals or groups 'Islamist'? Or 'fundamentalist'? Or 'extremist'? How can we have a monolith amongst a set of congregations making up almost one quarter of the world's human population? The history and politics of Islam is just as complex as that of Christianity.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Obama no 'wuss' but at what cost to Syria?

    • Evan Ellis
    • 18 June 2013
    4 Comments

    Alluding to his own military style intervention in Kosovo, Bill Clinton warned Obama not to look like a 'wuss' on Syria. Still, Obama's decision to start providing arms to Syrian rebels is an enormous risk. Australia's history of state interventions to tackle Indigenous disadvantage provide surprisingly apt criteria for evaluating the decision.

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  • RELIGION

    Pope Francis' unfinished business with the poor

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 21 March 2013
    24 Comments

    The relationship between the Catholic Church and the poor was explored most seriously in Latin America. I caught its dimensions most vividly in a dawn trip on a clapped out US school bus to a small regional town in El Salvador.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Intervening in Israel

    • Philip Mendes
    • 05 February 2013
    23 Comments

    The effectively deadlocked Israeli election outcome reflects a contradiction between philosophy and action: most Israelis are willing to consider two states in principle, yet they have been debating the same political issues for 20 years with no concrete outcome. Some form of long-term international intervention may be necessary to overcome the deadlock.

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  • RELIGION

    Vein hope for Pakistan's minorities

    • Irfan Yusuf
    • 21 January 2013
    7 Comments

    If Pakistan is to remain a nation with something resembling life and soul, it must protect its minorities. But instead, as with India, it is quietly eviscerating them. It isn't just extremists engaging in the self-harm, it happens at all levels of society. Before long the nation may find itself bleeding to death.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Hearing God in Soviet Russia

    • Michael Sariban
    • 23 October 2012
    4 Comments

    When ideology smashed the cathedrals, turned icons into rubble, congregation into crime, religion fell down in a heap, or seemed to ... Most people believed they knew better: countless lips kept doggedly whispering the fine-print headlines of saints. If the State was a rock, religion flowed round it.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Militancy trumps education on Pakistan frontier

    • Farooq Yousaf
    • 25 September 2012
    9 Comments

    With militants firmly holding the Federally Administered Tribal Areas, the already low literacy rate of 29 per cent has nosedived to 17 per cent in the region. Religious madaris are perceived as places of affordable education by common rural dwellers, while to the outer world, they remain breeding grounds for militancy. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    George Orwell's example for Australian journalists

    • Sarah Burnside
    • 20 September 2012
    9 Comments

    BBC director general Mark Thompson turned down a proposal to erect a statue of Orwell on the broadcaster's premises because the writer was 'too left-wing'. But political animals of all stripes have long sought to claim Orwell. His political writing transcends both time and ideology.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    What's the point of the Olympics?

    • Fatima Measham
    • 01 August 2012
    16 Comments

    The games are an escapist spectacle, where the flags of Iran, Palestine and Syria flutter without irony alongside those of the US, Israel and Turkey, and delegates from Spain and Greece wave as if their nation's economies have not fractured the Eurozone. The dissonance between the games and reality has become hard to ignore.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Time to re-imagine the Australian flag

    • Philip Harvey
    • 11 May 2012
    50 Comments

    The readiness of Australians to design a flag that is agreed to and honoured ought to be on the agenda of any forward-looking party. Otherwise a day will come when a design will be foisted on us that no one likes and has no distinctive meaning. One only has to listen to the national anthem to know Australians are capable of embracing second best.

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