Tag Archives: Syria

ALISON BROINOWSKI. Agents of influence and affluence.

If energy and armaments are the agents behind America’s ‘empire of bases’  and its ‘empire of markets’, how influential are they? On security, barely; on terrorism, hugely.

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JOHN TULLOH. My first foreign news assignment 50 years ago – the Six Day War.

This article was first published in Foreign Correspondents’ Association Australia and South Pacific website.  Next week, John Tulloh will be writing on the 50th anniversary of the Six Day War. It was mid-afternoon Sydney time on a winter’s Monday 50 … Continue reading

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JOHN TULLOH.  Jockeying for the big prize in Iran

‘Trump’s rhetoric towards Iran is so harsh that to have someone on the other side who is equally harsh might provoke an unintentional confrontation’. 

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Our misguided wars of choice.

In this article in the Boston Globe of April 16, JEFFREY D SACHS speaks of the risks that the US and the world are running.  He speaks of the US ‘wanton addiction to war’.  John Menadue. “There is one foreign … Continue reading

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RAMESH THAKUR. Donald Trump is more believable and moral than Putin – Seriously?

Instead of cheering US resort to increasingly robust use of military firepower as the first response to international crises, Western leaders should be ring-fencing Trump’s instinct to reckless behaviour in order to avoid a catastrophe.  

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JOHN TULLOH. Turkey – Erdogan’s day of judgment.

   Turkey’s voters face a momentous choice: whether they want their president to have the dictatorial power of a potential tyrant or one whose authority remains curbed by parliamentary government. 

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Another distraction, but what a distraction.

The starting point is putting a price on carbon – some form of emissions trading policy. But this is total anathema to the coalition party room – worse even than negative gearing. 

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ROSS BURNS. After Khan Sheikhun

The 4 April attack on Khan Sheikhun using CW (chemical warfare) weapons was almost certainly the work of Bashar al-Assad’s regime. This is the only explanation which ticks off all the boxes—means, motive and opportunity. The hastily assembled US retaliatory … Continue reading

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RAMESH THAKUR. Decoding the Trump strikes on Syria

The use of chemical weapons in Syria and the US air strikes in punishment are part of the continuing descent into lawlessness by various actors with unforeseeable consequences in an already inflamed region. 

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JAMES O’NEILL. Australia and the Iraq War: some new revelations.

“It is difficult not to conclude that Howard’s statement to Parliament on 18 March 2003 following his telephone conversation with Bush was a political statement designed to bolster what was an untenable decision to commit Australia to yet another foreign … Continue reading

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ALISON BROINOWSKI. If Australia has switched enemies in Syria, who and why are we fighting?

If Australia has switched enemies in Syria, as our allies apparently have done, the Turnbull Government owes us at least an explanation about who and why we are fighting. 

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JAMES O’NEILL. Just whose news is fake?

The term “fake news” has gained a certain currency in recent months, perhaps reaching its apogee with the Washington Post’s notorious list of alleged fake news sites.  

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RAMESH THAKUR. Syria and the Hippocratic principle: first do no harm

Western interference has worsened the pathology of broken, corrupt and dysfunctional politics across the region from Afghanistan to North Africa.  

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DAVID MENERE. How the mainstream media mislead the public on Syria

The bias in the treatment of the Syrian conflict by the mainstream media is not accidental or due to laxity on the part of the media. Rather, it is the result of the opposition groups’ exclusion of independent reporting, coupled … Continue reading

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RAMESH THAKUR. The slide to war with Russia.

‘God created war so Americans could learn geography’ (1) On 3 October, taking another step on the road to a new cold war, Russia suspended the 16-year bilateral plutonium disposition agreement with the US. Are the two countries sleepwalking into … Continue reading

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RICHARD BUTLER. Russia and the US Elections

  The US elections campaign has set-up a deeply negative framework for the future management of US/Russia relations. If Hillary Clinton is President her past attraction to military solutions to foreign policy problems will need revision, if conflict is to … Continue reading

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JOSEPH CAMILLERI. The election of Hillary Clinton promises a more dangerous world.

In a long and often exasperating presidential campaign, Americans and the world have been subjected to Donald Trump’s odious and often incoherent rhetoric, and from both sides much vitriol and endless accusations of deceit, crookedness and sexual misconduct. In this … Continue reading

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ALISON BROINOWSKI. Reclaiming Australia

ASIO Director-General is under-reported when he says anti-Islamic groups also threaten Australian security. ‘Incredible’ is a word over-used in the media when all they mean is ‘very’. So when something truly unbelievable happens, we have no description ready for it. … Continue reading

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TONY KEVIN. ‘Putin meets Turnbull’: an interesting encounter at Hangzhou.

  Chris Ullmann’s ABC News report on main outcomes for Australia of the Hangzhou G20 Summit led with an account of an impromptu ‘encounter’ between Malcolm Turnbull and Vladimir Putin. Maybe they bumped into one another in the hotel lift … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Don’t add to the disaster.

The government is considering adding to the disaster in the Middle East by instructing the RAAF to bomb targets in Syria. Will we ever learn from our past mistakes? In supporting the US invasion of Iraq, Australia helped trigger the … Continue reading

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Stuart Harris. Who are we backing in Syria?

It would be a serious mistake for Australia to respond positively to the US request, that we presumably invited, to join in airstrikes on Islamic State (IS) in Syria. Such action would probably be against international law, and in any … Continue reading

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John Tulloh. Goodbye Syria.

 THE DEAD-END ROADS TO AND FROM DAMASCUS Fifteen years ago this month, Bashar al-Assad succeeded his father to become president of Syria. Having spent some years studying and living in France and England, he had hopes of a Western-style liberalisation … Continue reading

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Richard Butler. The Invasion of Iraq,the decision and it’s consequences

It was reported on May 29th, that Sir John Chilcot, the head of the UK inquiry into the decision to invade Iraq in 2003, had reached a “breakthrough” on the issue of how much of the official records of the … Continue reading

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US complicity in chemical weapons. Guest blogger; Richard Broinowski

In recent days, President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry have made much of their moral repugnance at alleged chemical warfare attacks by the Syrian regime against rebel groups. Their retaliatory  missile strikes, if made, would demonstrate that the … Continue reading

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Chemical warfare and Syria. Guest blogger: Marcus Einfeld

I never thought I would ever agree with Glenn Beck, the US shock jock from the extreme right of the political spectrum. I think he is right about the US not intervening in the Middle East again. Difficult as it … Continue reading

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The Vatican appeals in vain for decency towards refugees. John Menadue

  On June 6, the Vatican emphasized that governments protect refugees. It said that the world’s governments must give ‘absolute priority’ to the fundamental rights of refugees. Cardinal Veglio who heads the Pontifical Council for Migrants said: ‘Protection must be … Continue reading

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