• Feature Article

    Can leadership change revive the UN?

    Fatima Measham |  The United Nations Security Council is in the process of selecting its next secretary-general. There is intense interest, not least because the General Assembly has made efforts to make it more transparent via an open nomination process and televised debates. The UN is seen in some parts as an edifice to bureaucratic ineptitude. But the internationalism that stitched the world back together after two calamitous wars has frayed. We need the UN as ballast against future instability.
  • Feature Article

    Breaking out of the social media echo chamber

    Catherine Marshall |  Though the internet has stretched and expanded the number of people and places we have access to, it has also constrained the range of ideas and opinions to which we're exposed. Research has found that Facebook users tend to read and share information that reinforces their own beliefs. This phenomenon has been particularly noticeable in the past month, with the emotion whipped up by the Brexit campaign, the election, and a spate of shocking, apparently Isis-related killings.
  • Feature Article

    Pell abuse saga reeks of incompetent policing

    1 Comment
    Frank Brennan |  Wednesday night's ABC 7.30 program carried allegations against Cardinal George Pell which, if true, are devastating: life ruining for victims like Damian Dignan and Lyndon Monument; confronting for all citizens committed to the wellbeing of children; and earth shattering for Catholics who still have faith in their church. The report is also troubling for those of us concerned about due process and the rule of law - not as academic notions for lawyers but as the secure bulwarks of a society in which everyone's rights and interests are protected.
  • Feature Article

    Israeli voices raised against hatred and division

    2 Comments
    Na'ama Carlin |  It was two years ago this month, in July 2014, that my flight touched down in Ben Gurion Airport half an hour later than scheduled. There were rumours of Hamas missiles landing in the vicinity of the airport. A few days later multiple airlines announced they were ceasing travel to Israel. What would become Israel's deadliest offensive in Gaza since the Second Intifada, 'Operation Protective Edge', was entering its second week. How did it come to this?
  • Feature Article

    A cautious response to mass killings and police violence

    5 Comments
    Andrew Hamilton |  When confronted by violent killings we should be appalled, identify sympathetically with the victims and with those affected indirectly by these tragedies, and also take a respectful interest in the complex lives of the perpetrators and the relationships that contributed to the shootings. The pause before making larger judgments respects the complexity of motivation and of social interactions involved in the killings, and offers a base for reflecting on how we may lessen the possibility of them happening in future.
  • Feature Article

    Hanson supporters must accept world has changed

    17 Comments
    Fatima Measham |  Rather than her reprise, it was the appeals for civility that I found more disconcerting. Katharine Murphy, Margo Kingston and Tracey Spicer ran variations of the argument that confronting the things that Hanson and her party stand for would inflate her status (as if getting elected into the senate has not already done that). Kingston suggests seeking out Hanson supporters for a chat. Unfortunately, that is not a thing black and brown Australians do, sit down for a cuppa with people who despise them.
  • Can leadership change revive the UN?

    Fatima Measham | 01 August 2016

    Helen ClarkThe United Nations Security Council is in the process of selecting its next secretary-general. There is intense interest, not least because the General Assembly has made efforts to make it more transparent via an open nomination process and televised debates. The UN is seen in some parts as an edifice to bureaucratic ineptitude. But the internationalism that stitched the world back together after two calamitous wars has frayed. We need the UN as ballast against future instability.

  • Breaking out of the social media echo chamber

    Catherine Marshall | 29 July 2016

    Facebook like iconsThough the internet has stretched and expanded the number of people and places we have access to, it has also constrained the range of ideas and opinions to which we're exposed. Research has found that Facebook users tend to read and share information that reinforces their own beliefs. This phenomenon has been particularly noticeable in the past month, with the emotion whipped up by the Brexit campaign, the election, and a spate of shocking, apparently Isis-related killings.

  • Pell abuse saga reeks of incompetent policing

    1 Comment
    Frank Brennan | 29 July 2016

    George Pell - Still from ABC reportWednesday night's ABC 7.30 program carried allegations against Cardinal George Pell which, if true, are devastating: life ruining for victims like Damian Dignan and Lyndon Monument; confronting for all citizens committed to the wellbeing of children; and earth shattering for Catholics who still have faith in their church. The report is also troubling for those of us concerned about due process and the rule of law - not as academic notions for lawyers but as the secure bulwarks of a society in which everyone's rights and interests are protected.

  • Israeli voices raised against hatred and division

    2 Comments
    Na'ama Carlin | 28 July 2016

    The separation wall in Qalqilya in the Occupied Territories (West Bank). Photo by Na'ama CarlinIt was two years ago this month, in July 2014, that my flight touched down in Ben Gurion Airport half an hour later than scheduled. There were rumours of Hamas missiles landing in the vicinity of the airport. A few days later multiple airlines announced they were ceasing travel to Israel. What would become Israel's deadliest offensive in Gaza since the Second Intifada, 'Operation Protective Edge', was entering its second week. How did it come to this?

  • A cautious response to mass killings and police violence

    5 Comments
    Andrew Hamilton | 28 July 2016

    Ali David SonbolyWhen confronted by violent killings we should be appalled, identify sympathetically with the victims and with those affected indirectly by these tragedies, and also take a respectful interest in the complex lives of the perpetrators and the relationships that contributed to the shootings. The pause before making larger judgments respects the complexity of motivation and of social interactions involved in the killings, and offers a base for reflecting on how we may lessen the possibility of them happening in future.

  • Don Dale abuse is a symptom of a sick justice culture

    9 Comments
    Julie Kimber | 27 July 2016

    Don Dale prisonerThe 4 Corners report into the treatment of children in a NT juvenile justice facility is a stark and grotesque demonstration of state abuse of power. As a result John Elferink, NT Corrections Minister, has been sacked, and the Prime Minister has announced a royal commission into the actions at Don Dale. This is a good start, but there is much more to be done. We need to question a culture that willingly imprisons the most vulnerable, and puts up with a system where not all are equal before the law.

  • Trump vs Clinton: Americans' unpalatable choice

    8 Comments
    Justin Glyn | 27 July 2016

    Hillary ClintonAs the US goes through its convention season, it is becoming increasingly clear that the choice is between someone spouting decidedly undemocratic and possibly fascist rhetoric and someone for whom democratic decision-making is, at best, something to be evaded with as little scrutiny as possible. Both parties are moneyed and both seek foreign scapegoats upon which to direct media attention. November is shaping up to provide a distinctly unpalatable choice.

  • Closing the gates of violence in Colombia

    1 Comment
    Antonio Castillo | 26 July 2016

    Juan Manuel SantosIt has been little more a month since Colombian president Juan Manuel Santos and Timochenko, the nom de guerre of the leader of the FARC, the oldest guerrilla group in the world, proclaimed a cease-fire. In La Habana on 23 June, the two concluded four years of negotiations to end the 50 year old Colombian civil war, the longest armed conflict in the western hemisphere. The development is hopeful, but Colombian peace attempts are nothing new, and the conditions won't be easy to meet.

  • Mortal touch

    2 Comments
    Anne Elvey | 26 July 2016

    Fingers touchWith the same sense that meets the keys I stroke her arm. This tactility makes the tangible seem eternal, as if the want to write were training me to count on time. My mortality is misdirected thus by a capacity to touch. And when I put my arm around her shoulders, I feel beneath the skin the sharpness of the bone.

  • Prisoners of their own stories

    9 Comments
    Brian Matthews | 25 July 2016

    Primo LeviHolocaust survivor Primo Levi wrote If This is a Man to carry out what he saw as the critical task of bearing witness, and he became one of the greatest writers of the 20th century as he continued to bear witness one way and another in later books. Some day, one of Australia's asylum seekers will, like Levi and with the same sense of dread and horror, tell his or her story to ensure that someone bears witness; and to confirm that all of us are implicated.

  • The changing face of the law across generations

    7 Comments
    Frank Brennan | 25 July 2016

    Cathedral College student Terrence Sullivan and Frank BrennanNext year marks the 50th anniversary of the amendment to the Constitution which took out the adverse references to Aborigines. Following our recent election, we are assured at least six, and possibly seven, members of our national parliament who proudly claim an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander heritage. They are represented in all parties and none. How good it would be if our elected Aboriginal politicians could come together across party lines and propose an amendment to the Constitution which recognises them.


Featured Writers

  • Andrew Hamilton

    Andrew Hamilton headshot

    "Once we see those responsible for killing as human beings we cannot define them exclusively by their action, whatever its motivation."
     read more

     

  • Ellena Savage

    Ellena Savage headshot

    "Her mood of weariness, of frustration, and of dark humour becomes an emblem of the election."
     read more

     

  • Fatima Measham

    Fatima Measham headshot

    "Whatever we may think of the UN, we don't know what it would be like to go completely without it, and we may not afford the cost of finding out."
     read more

     

  • Justin Glyn

    Justin Glyn

    "Revealing this kind of thing in the Soviet bloc was exactly what America proclaimed to be a public service during the Cold War."
     read more

     

  • Kate Galloway

    Kate Galloway

    "Privacy though is likely to become - if it is not already - something for citizens who are rich and powerful."
     read more

     

  • The bleak ballad of Wilson Parking

    11 Comments
    Ellena Savage | 10 June 2016

    Parking garageWhen my friend and I get to the payment station of the car park, it says we owe 70 bucks, which can't be right because we got the early bird special which was a quarter of that, so, nah. We call the parking lot people and they say look at the fine print, it clearly states that the early bird deal only applies if you leave the car park after 3pm. Wilson Parking is a subsidiary of a subcontractor of Transfield Services, which runs security at Nauru and Manus Island. I grow petulant and say I'll wait til 3pm.

  • A cheerfulness of nuns

    10 Comments
    Brian Doyle | 06 July 2016

    nunsI heard many interesting and sad and funny stories from this wonderment of nuns, this intensity of nuns, this insistence of nuns, but the story that stays with me is the nun who talked to me about the 50, count them 50, years she spent as a kindergarten teacher, in four schools, two of them quite rural, one quite urban, and one, she said, in the furthest outskirts of the city, the place where immigrants and migrants and really poor people live, the place where the bus route ends.

  • 'Australian Muslim' is not an oxymoron

    16 Comments
    Somayra Ismailjee | 15 June 2015

    Australian Muslim girlsThere is a particular anatomy to the process of othering. In any context, the formula consists of propaganda, hatred, division, suppression and control. I'm from Perth. Some people would dispute this due to my brown skin and non-Anglo name. But I was born here, and have lived here for my entire life. Still, people like me are too often considered Australian only by law, and not by sociocultural connotation.

  • War-room of a child's mind

    4 Comments
    Belinda Rule | 21 June 2016

    child's hand holding mother'sI saw a younger girl, blonde hair in pink clips, spiral glitter sneaker laces - baubles of a treasured child that no-one ever bought for me. A girl in a parlour painting, and I the hairy spider hulking in the corner. In the war-room of the mind, I pierced my map with pins. How simple to trick her to some dirty culvert, hold her down, mar her white arms ... Civilisation was a hair draped on the head of a pin, each one of us poised, rigid, clutching our own pin still - I could see I would cramp with the effort all my life.

  • Losing and finding Dad in dementia

    13 Comments
    Julie Guirgis | 16 June 2016

    Elderly man, head down in shadowsToday I walked past the bathroom and noticed a pale yellow puddle with an odour worse than an unflushed toilet. I cringed at the stench, with the realisation that I had to wash urine off the floor ... Dad's illness sometimes causes ambiguous loss. It is unclear, has no resolution or closure. He is like someone I don't know anymore; he is gone-but-still-there. This leads to complicated grief. I can't look at him without seeing a fading picture of who he used to be, and speak of him in the past tense.


WEEK IN POLITICS



The long roots of Don Dale abuse

Fiona Katauskas

Cartoon by Fiona Katauskas links abuse at Don Dale juvenile detention centre with history of violence against Aboriginals.


This week's offering from Eureka Street's award winning political cartoonist.


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