section: International

There are more than 200 results, only the first 200 are displayed here.

  • INTERNATIONAL

    We created the Manus Island danger

    • Moira Rayner
    • 20 February 2014
    38 Comments

    We created this risk, intending it to 'deter' boat people and people smugglers. As a consequence, we've created racial conflict in PNG and the collapse of the rule of law in Nauru. Now, it is surely a duty to re-evaluate a policy that leads to mental illness, destruction of property, hope, imagination and civil society, and death. I think we have a duty to refugees, because we are descended from refugees and may be refugees ourselves, one day.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Mistaken for Jewish in cold, grand Moscow

    • Howard Willis
    • 19 February 2014
    6 Comments

    On the occasions I got into detailed discussions with strangers in Moscow, a pattern emerged. Saying I was Australian prompted a polite request for clarification: 'But your ancestry?' The reply that I was fifth-generation Australian was treated as an evasion, or met with the assumption that my ancestors were 'bandits'. Generally, Muscovites took a second look at me and the box they ticked was 'Jew'.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    New Zealand rocks but the poor are rolled

    • Cecily McNeill
    • 17 February 2014
    4 Comments

    With the Australian economy in disarray, the Abbott Government is showing keen interest in New Zealand's projected unusually high growth. But NZ's status as a rock star economy is in question from commentators who say it has never recovered from major policy shifts 30 years ago. In particular its sexy image on the global business stage does not translate to a better life for those on low incomes, particularly women and children.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Silence won't answer the Woody Allen abuse allegation

    • ZoĆ« Krupka
    • 05 February 2014
    22 Comments

    On Saturday Dylan Farrow accused her adoptive father, the filmmaker and actor Woody Allen, of sexual assault for the second time. She first made these allegations when she was seven years old. There is a real ethical concern when allegations that have been denied in court continue to be raised publicly. We need to be able to forge a difficult balance between making space for ongoing doubt and fuelling public vilification.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Obama's cannabis defence illuminates NSW booze laws

    • Ruby Hamad
    • 03 February 2014
    7 Comments

    In a nation still divided bitterly along race lines, blacks, and to a lesser extent Hispanics, bear the brunt of America's prisons-for-profit program. The perils of mandatory sentencing should serve as a warning to NSW, which has announced mandatory minimum sentences as a response to alcohol-fuelled violence. The question is not which drug is more dangerous, but how society chooses to deal with each one and why.

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  • 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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  • INTERNATIONAL

    No Buddhist bullets in Thai turmoil

    • Paul Kay
    • 24 January 2014
    4 Comments

    It's often said in Thailand that the three pillars of Thai society are Buddhism, the monarchy and the nation, or political system. In recent months I've witnessed many noisy anti-government protests in Bangkok where political groups have been very visible. But amid the turmoil, Buddhism and the monarchy are notably absent. The low profile of the monarchy is easily explained. The absence of Buddhism is more puzzling.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    The war on asylum seekers

    • Justin Glyn
    • 22 January 2014
    32 Comments

    The current dispute with Indonesia over border incursions by the Australian Navy is symptomatic of a deeper problem — the militarisation of political discourse. Von Clausewitz famously claimed that 'war is politics by other means': in other words, that military force is employed in service of political ends. In Australia, as elsewhere in the West, this is being taken to an extreme not previously seen outside authoritarian societies.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Best of 2013: My Philippines typhoon fury

    • Fatima Measham
    • 17 January 2014
    1 Comment

    I may have gotten extremely sweary on social media. Part of it was due to gut-deep fear for people to whom I am personally connected, but also generally for a country that runs in my veins. The other part of it was fury that the growing reality of extreme weather events is still being characterised as natural by climate change sceptics who have the luxury of speculating and refuting links outright.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Best of 2013: Mandela crosses the burning water

    • Catherine Marshall
    • 15 January 2014
    1 Comment

    I said my own private goodbye almost two years ago, when I visited Robben Island on a trip back to my homeland of South Africa. That journey across Table Bay, towards the tiny green cell in which you lived for much of your 27-year incarceration, took me not so much to an outpost of apartheid as to the birthplace of democratic South Africa.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Best of 2013: Margaret Thatcher versus the Scots

    • Duncan MacLaren
    • 10 January 2014

    While any man's death diminishes me because I am involved in mankind', I must admit to pouring a glass of good malt at the news of Thatcher's passing. The Southern English may laud her as the greatest prime minister after Churchill but for us Scots she was a hate figure who in the last days of her premiership scarcely dared to cross the border for fear of being assassinated.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Best of 2013: Transformed by a boring Brussels Mass

    • Benedict Coleridge
    • 07 January 2014

    The coughing is getting worse; it sounds like the pew behind me is hosting a cardiac arrest. English theologian James Alison described mass as 'a long term education in becoming unexcited', a state that allows us to dwell 'in a quiet place' that 'increases our attention, our presence'. In Brussels, becoming 'unexcited' seems important.

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