Labour activist murdered in Philippines

The militant Partido Manggagawa (PM, Labour Party) condemned the killing of one of its leaders in Talisay, Cebu on 17 September. Orlando Abangan [known also as Ka Lando], a community leader of PM-Cebu, was shot at close range by a lone gunman around 8am while he was on his way home in Siti...CONTINUE READING

Duterte and Obama tiff: temper tantrum or real?

Ben Reid Newly elected Philippine president Rodrigo R. Duterte has entered into a very public tiff with US president Barack Obama. The controversy stems from Obama’s mild criticisms of the widely reported wave of killings of suspected drug traffickers in the Philippines, which has occurred since Du...CONTINUE READING

What’s behind the carry-on about Long Tan?

Allen Myers When considering the fuss made about Vietnamese restrictions on Australian plans to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the battle of Long Tan, we should think of a story that did not appear in Australian newspapers on 20 February 1992: “DARWIN – On the 50th anniversary of the bombing of D...CONTINUE READING

Australia found complicit in crimes against humanity

Helen Jarvis The Indonesian army constructed a sustained and false narrative of acts of extreme brutality and conspiracy against the state in order to create a pretext for the anti-communist purge and slaughter, which was quickly launched [and] the diplomatic and propaganda apparatuses of the US, Brita...CONTINUE READING

Australia to get permanent police presence in Solomon Islands

Rutaban Yameen The Australian government is negotiating a deal with the Solomon Islands to give the Australian Federal Police (AFP) a permanent presence in its capital city, Honiara, under the umbrella of the Australian high commission. The Australian-led Regional Assistance Mission to the Solomon Island...CONTINUE READING

South Korean union leader jailed

Kim Bullimore Han Sang-gyn, president of the 800,000-strong (South) Korean Confederation of Trade Unions (KCTU), was sentenced to five years’ jail on 4 July for his role in organising a series of demonstrations against the Park Geun-hye government. Han was convicted on charges relating to traffic and pu...CONTINUE READING

Anti-communist backlash in Indonesia reflects political elite anxiety

James Balowski A recent spate of arrests of people for wearing T-shirts with symbols of the banned Indonesian Communist Party (PKI), seizures of books about the 1965 anti-communist purge and a propaganda campaign to whip up fears of a PKI revival in Indonesia reflect just how anxious elements of the poli...CONTINUE READING

Human rights violations continue against Sri Lankan Tamils

Rutaban Yameen Withering hopes , a report by People for Equality and Relief in Lanka, has detailed ongoing human rights violations against Tamil civilians in the north-east of Sri Lanka, more than a year after the former secretary of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), Maithripala Sirisena, assumed the p...CONTINUE READING

Celebrating Pramoedya Ananta Toer

Stephen Miller At the end of April, we marked the 10th anniversary of the death of one of our region’s most important political novelists, Pramoedya Ananta Toer (1925-2006). Amidst the build-up to the empty media circus associated with a federal election, there was virtually no chance that this would be...CONTINUE READING