Australian news, and some related international items

Australia must reject nuclear lobby lies about Hiroshima, Nagasaki, AND climate change – theme for August 21

Australia is traditionally very vulnerable to nuclear lobby propaganda . Like the USA, Australia swallowd the story that the atomic bombings in 1845 were essential, to end the war. For Australia this was also seen as essential to save this country from invasion. Historian now genersally agree that the bombings were done in a hurry, because the war was ending, -the purpose was to frighten Soviet Russia with the threat of nuclear bombing

The video below is not new – it was made in 2016 – but the facts remain the same

This was the first big nuclear lie. It was followed quickly by the lie about ‘peaceful nukes’ (It is now openly recognised that the ‘peaceful’nuclear industry is absolutely connected to the nuclear weapons industry.

Today – there is an equally big lie being broadcast around the world – that new nuclear power will solve climate change.

A particularly absurd version of that climate lie is now being pushed by Australian politicians and others bought by the nuclear industry. The idea is that an enormous number highly expensive small nuclear reactors, which cannot possibly be up and running for at leat 30 years, will combat global heating – when the need for action is NOW.

Even despite the Morrison government’s love affair with fossil fuel industries, Australia is already taking up renewable technologies, and is reducing carbon emissions. Australia cannot afford to derail the process of energy conservation, and clean energy, by believing the nuclear lie, and directing its efforts away from genuine climate action.

July 17, 2021 Posted by | Christina themes | Leave a comment

US and Allies’ military machine – out of Afghanistan (where it’s needed) and into the Pacific – against its new enemy – The Great Barrier Reef

War games on despite pandemic, threat to Great Barrier Reef, Kerry SmithJuly 16, 2021  Lurking off the coast of China’s eastern seaboard now are three United States aircraft carrier battle groups (each with about 30 support vessels).

They will be joined by a British aircraft carrier group and Australian and Canadian warships as part of biennial military exercises, which start on July 18 and last until the end of the month.

Talisman Sabre 2021 (TS21) will involve a US expeditionary strike group from the USS America, the amphibious assault ship based at Sasebo Naval Base in Japan, and 17,000 Australian, US and foreign troops in combined land, sea and air war exercises.  

According to Stars and Stripes, for the first time, there will be live-fire training: the US Army will fire a Patriot missile defense system from Shoalwater Bay in Queensland at a pair of drone targets on July 16.

This is within the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and other environmentally and culturally significant areas.

The war games will also take place in Darwin in the Northern Territory and Evans Head, New South Wales. 

All are thousands of kilometres away from their home base, and provocatively close to the new declared enemy — China.

Forces from Canada, Japan, New Zealand and the Republic of Korea will take part and Australia-based personnel from India, Indonesia, France and Germany will observe.

Meanwhile, the ABC’s “defence correspondent” hyperventilated on July 14 that a solitary Chinese military ship, outside Australian territorial waters, poses a threat to national security.

The Independent and Peaceful Australia Network (IPAN) is concerned about both the war games and its impact on environmentally and culturally significant sites.

“TS21 will involve amphibious assaults, movement of heavy vehicles, use of live ammunition as well as the use of U.S. nuclear-powered and nuclear-weapon capable vessels,” IPAN spokesperson Annette Brownlie said.

“These activities are incompatible with the protection of the environment and, in particular, the Great Barrier Reef.

“During Talisman Sabre 2013, the US jettisoned four unarmed bombs on the Great Barrier Reef when they had difficulty dropping them on their intended target, Townshend Island,” Brownlie said.

The objective of Talisman Sabre is to further integrate the Australian military with the US — now ranked among the world’s worst polluters.

IPAN said the ADF did not engage in a Public Environment Report process for TS21 and has yet to release an environmental assessment for the areas in which TS21 will take place.

However, the Department of Defence did produce an environmental awareness video for visiting troops that promotes the military use of the Great Barrier Reef. The video reminds troops to consider the reef and not to litter.

“Talisman Sabre is a threat to the reef and to the environment. Putting out a video is a completely inadequate response,” Brownlie said.

This comes as federal environment minister Sussan Ley is lobbying to keep the Great Barrier Reef off the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization World Heritage Committee’s “in danger” list.

Despite a global pandemic, about 1800 foreign military personnel have arrived in Darwin to participate.

July 17, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming, politics international, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Australia’s weapons lobby drumming up fear of nuclear attack by China, against all logic

Those in Australia beating the “drums of war” point to Taiwan as the flashpoint for the next major global conflict. To what end does a first strike on Australia achieve China’s goals in relation to Taiwan?

War with China: zero logic yet the weapons lobby has 42% of Australians believing it   Michael West Media, by Marcus Reubenstein | Jul 16, 2021  Incredibly, a survey finds 42% of Australians believe China will attack Australia, this despite exports to China surging 36% over in the last six months, and despite there being no logical rationale for war with China, or an attack by China. Marcus Reubenstein analyses the ludicrous position of Australia’s China hawks and the mainstream media pushing their agendas. 

“Cry ‘Havoc!’ and let slip the dogs of war.”

William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar Act 3, Scene 1

China is a rapidly growing economic power, seeking to exert considerable influence in its region and beyond. And like every great power it is a bully which tries to entice, cajole or intimidate other nations into adopting its view of the world.

How is this such a difficult concept for Australians to embrace?

Since Federation we’ve tied our fortunes to two great powers, the declining British Empire then the rising, and rising even more, US global hegemony……….

Who is threatening whom?

new report from the Australia Institute begins with the following words:

“In April this year, Australians were warned by no less an expert than the former Minister for Defence, Christopher Pyne, that they may need to engage in a ‘kinetic’ war with China in the next five to ten years.”

Perhaps, in the realm of China policy, ‘no lesser expert’ better describes his authority on the subject.

The same Pyne, famously discussed his role as a defence industry consultant with EY whilst he was a sitting member of the Federal Cabinet, a matter which prompted a Senate investigation.

He still works for EY, sits on the board of defence contractor XTEC, is Chair of the Advisory Board of another defence contractor NIOA, and in June last year Arawa Capital announced him as Chair of its Advisory Board and Investment Committee for a fund investing in weapons systems.

In heralding that appointment Arawa specifically referred to the, still unsubstantiated, Scott Morrison announcement of a malicious cyber attack by an unnamed “state-based” actor. Arawa trumpeted Pyne has “unrivalled knowledge of the cyber, intelligence and national security landscape.”    

With Pyne on board, Arawa said it “anticipates closing out the initial $50mil capital raising swiftly.” It transpired there was a swift “closing out”, ASIC records show six months later Arawa Capital Pty Ltd was deregistered as a company.  

According to research from Michael West Media’s “Revolving Doors” series, Pyne’s numerous board memberships and consultancies put him in direct, or indirect, contact with more than a dozen weapons makers and contractors.

Clearly, talking up a war with China is of no financial benefit to these companies.

Why would China attack Australia?

Should Australia go to war with China in defence of Taiwan? is the title of the Australia Institute report and 42% of its six hundred respondents think China is poised to attack Australia.

How and why?

Those in Australia beating the “drums of war” point to Taiwan as the flashpoint for the next major global conflict. To what end does a first strike on Australia achieve China’s goals in relation to Taiwan?

If Australia has something China wants, it is many times cheaper and easier to buy it than to send your army half way around the world to steal it.              

China’s current leadership is presiding over a great deal more diplomatic disasters than triumphs but, if nothing else, the Chinese are pragmatic.

Australia’s rabid China hawks will no doubt dismiss such assessments, saying China doesn’t need to deploy military assets it would simply launch a nuclear strike on a target—which they ignore is home to 1.2 million ethnically Chinese people.

My counter argument?

The policy wonks in Washington, who made you their lapdogs, didn’t throw you a bone because they thought you were smart, they threw you the bone because they knew you were dumb enough to catch it!

This survey’s inconvenient truth

The same number of respondents were polled in Taiwan and only a few more (49 percent) expressed fears of an attack from the mainland. Bear in mind the Taiwanese are of the same Han ethnicity as the majority of Chinese, who moved over from the mainland in the 1680s; the PRC has never given up its claim to what was once part of China; and the island sits just 161 kilometres off the coast of China.

That four in ten Australians should think Beijing—a mere 9,000 kilometres from Canberra—is gearing up for invasion is staggering.

Report author Allan Behm noted, “Given Australia and Taiwan’s historical and geographical differences, it is astounding that Australians could be more fearful than Taiwan in anticipating an attack from China.”

This anticipation is undoubtedly fuelled by Australia’s China hawks, all with close ties to US-funded research groups and patronage from US weapons makers.

However, they should not be too smug in thinking their “drums of war” are resonating.

73 percent of Australians regard the United States as an aggressive nation, while only six in ten Australians believe the US would come to our aid in the event of war with China.

Given Australia has followed the United States into 100 percent of its wars, that Australians would only rate America a 60 percent chance of leaping to our defence is a sobering statistic.

Totally at odds with Prime Minister Morrison and Foreign Minister Maris Payne’s unquestioned support of the US antagonism towards China, 75 percent of Australians think it is in our interests that China and the US “work together towards world peace”. Of concern to the spin merchants inside the government an even higher number of coalition supporters, 79 percent, think peace with China is a good idea.

Despite the US, and Morrison’s, rhetoric of Taiwan being a like-minded democracy of shared values, 76 percent of Taiwanese rate America as an aggressor. Should the US come to Taiwan’s aid in a war with China, only 18 percent of Taiwanese people think they would win.

How reliable are drummers?

By any sensible strategic logic, the dogs of war should remain in their box. Let the drums of war continue to drum up business for the China threat industry and their death-merchant patrons.  …..  

July 17, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics, spinbuster, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Liberal-led committee raises concerns about Morrison government’s charity crackdown

Liberal-led committee raises concerns about Morrison government’s charity crackdown,  Concetta Fierravanti-Wells fears the regulations could curb political protest and freedom of speech  Guardian Daniel Hurst,  16 July 21,   
A Coalition-chaired committee has raised concerns about the Morrison government’s crackdown on charities suggesting the new regulations could curb certain types of political protests and freedom of speech.

In a newly released letter, the conservative Liberal senator Concetta Fierravanti-Wells also says the government has been too vague in explaining what sorts of offences could lead to charities being deregistered.

An alliance of more than 30 charities welcomed the intervention, with Tim Costello saying it sends “a clear signal that these laws are unprecedented and an unjustified regulatory overreach”.

Late last month, the government said it would press ahead with new regulations to expand the types of offences for which charities could be deregistered, prompting the sector to raise fears the crackdown could silence their advocacy work.

Under the changes, which the government says will reinforce trust and confidence in the sector, the regulator would be empowered to investigate charities engaging in or promoting serious unlawful acts of trespass, vandalism, theft or assault and threatening behaviour.

This will apply regardless of whether they are classified as an indictable offence or the less serious category of summary offences under state and territory laws.

Charities will be prohibited from using their resources – including social media accounts – to “actively promote” others to engage in unlawful activities.

Fierravanti-Wells has written to the assistant treasurer, Michael Sukkar, seeking a response to a range of concerns, including the potential effect on the implied freedom of political communication in Australia.

Fierravanti-Wells is chair of the parliamentary committee that monitors how ministers are making use of their powers to issue regulations.

In her letter to Sukkar on behalf of the committee (PDF), she says while the government has provided some examples of the type of offences to which the rules may apply, “it is unclear what the full scope of the offences may be”.

The government has not provided enough detail about the charities commissioner’s discretionary powers, why they are needed, and any safeguards – even though that information “is important to enable charities to clearly understand their obligations”.

“The committee concerns are particularly amplified noting that the discretionary powers to be exercised by the commissioner may relate to the determination of whether a criminal law has been breached,” Fierravanti-Wells writes.

Similarly, she says, the government has not provided information about whether the measure “may limit registered entities’ implied freedom of political communication, by preventing them from engaging in, or supporting certain activities”.

“This may include limiting their ability to engage in, or support, certain types of political protest,” she writes, without making any assessment as to whether the regulations are constitutional.

Fierravanti-Wells asks Sukkar to explain by 28 July “how the instrument is compliant with the implied freedom of political communication, and whether the explanatory statement can be amended to include this analysis”.

Costello, the chair of the Community Council for Australia and former chief of World Vision Australia, said it was “heartening to see that this important committee shares the concerns of charities from across the sector, which have formed a broad alliance to condemn these egregious regulations”.

“Giving the charity commissioner power to shutter a charity for a minor offence by a member is the equivalent of the electoral commissioner having discretion to deregister the Liberal party because a party member damages someone’s lawn when putting up a sign,” Costello said in a statement on Friday.

Dr Cassandra Goldie, the head of the Australian Council of Social Service, said a healthy democracy was “one where communities and their charities are free to speak up and act in the interests of the people they represent and serve”…………

July 17, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, civil liberties, politics | Leave a comment

New book ”I Alone Can Fix It” -raises question that Trump could have been ready to launch a nuclear war.

Pelosi feared Trump would launch nuclear weapons in final days, book claims, LEXI LONAS – 07/15/21 Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was fearful former President Trump would launch nuclear weapons in his final days in the White House, according to a new book.

Washington Post journalists Carol Leonnig and Philip Rucker write in “I Alone Can Fix It” that Pelosi called Gen. Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, after the Capitol riot to express her concerns about Trump’s behavior, the newspaper reported.

According to the book, she wanted to ensure Trump could not start a war and launch nuclear weapons as one of his final acts in power

“This guy’s crazy,” Pelosi reportedly told Milley. “He’s dangerous. He’s a maniac.”

“Ma’am, I guarantee you that we have checks and balances in the system,” Milley responded, Leonnig and Rucker write.

Trump responded to the excerpts from the book by saying that Pelosi is a “nut job.”

“Nancy Pelosi is a known nut job. Her enraged quotes that she was afraid that I would use nuclear weapons is just more of the same. In fact, I was the one who got us out of wars, not into wars,” Trump said. 

They also state that Milley and other military officials feared Trump would attempt a coup to stay in power and considered resigning.

“They may try, but they’re not going to f—— succeed,” Milley reportedly told his deputies when discussing the potential of a coup. “You can’t do this without the military. You can’t do this without the CIA and the FBI. We’re the guys with the guns.”

Milley thought Trump was “the classic authoritarian leader with nothing to lose,” the authors write.

Trump in a statement on Thursday dismissed the allegations in the new book, saying he “never threatened, or spoke about, to anyone, a coup of our Government.”

“So ridiculous!” he said while repeating unfounded allegations of massive election fraud and saying he lost respect for Milley last summer.

The authors interviewed more than 140 people for the book, due out on Tuesday, including Trump himself for more than two hours.  

July 17, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The International Atomic Energy Agency is well aware of that danger we don’t discuss – NUCLEAR TERRORISM

IAEA begins construction of Training Centre to Counter Nuclear Terrorism
, NEI Magazine,14 July 2021  The Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Rafael Mariano Grossi, on 12 July broke ground for a new facility that will help strengthen countries’ abilities to tackle nuclear terrorism in areas such as the illegal trafficking of nuclear material and the physical protection of facilities and major public events.

The IAEA Nuclear Security Training and Demonstration Centre will be located at the IAEA facility in Seibersdorf, 30 km south of Vienna, and is scheduled to be operational in 2023. “This Centre will help us in supporting countries to remain ahead of the curve in guarding against nuclear terrorism,” Grossi said………….

July 17, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Taylor dismisses “duty of care” ruling, says coal mine decisions “about balance” — RenewEconomy

Taylor says that energy system about “balance” – suggesting the safety of young people must be balanced against the interests of coal. The post Taylor dismisses “duty of care” ruling, says coal mine decisions “about balance” appeared first on RenewEconomy.

Taylor dismisses “duty of care” ruling, says coal mine decisions “about balance” — RenewEconomy

July 17, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

“Scared of solar:” Why the Top End’s first big solar farms are not switched on — RenewEconomy

The first utility scale solar farms in the Northern Territory are sitting idle, unable to be switched off due to “onerous, unprecedented and indefensible” new rules. The post “Scared of solar:” Why the Top End’s first big solar farms are not switched on appeared first on RenewEconomy.

“Scared of solar:” Why the Top End’s first big solar farms are not switched on — RenewEconomy

July 17, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Energy Insiders Podcast: AEMO’s 100pct renewables plan, and the view from Japan — RenewEconomy

New AEMO boss makes a splash, a huge new renewable hydrogen plan, and we talk to Monica Nagashima from Influence Map in Japan. The post Energy Insiders Podcast: AEMO’s 100pct renewables plan, and the view from Japan appeared first on RenewEconomy.

Energy Insiders Podcast: AEMO’s 100pct renewables plan, and the view from Japan — RenewEconomy

July 17, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Brighte to deliver first phase of ACT’s interest free loans for solar, storage and EVs — RenewEconomy

“Buy now pay later” pioneer Brighte to administer first phase of ACT interest free loans for rooftop solar, batteries and electric vehicles. The post Brighte to deliver first phase of ACT’s interest free loans for solar, storage and EVs appeared first on RenewEconomy.

Brighte to deliver first phase of ACT’s interest free loans for solar, storage and EVs — RenewEconomy

July 17, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

“We won’t be Uncle Sucker:” US to join EU with carbon tax on imports — RenewEconomy

US and Europe to target climate recalcitrants with import taxes. Labor says Morrison’s inaction is putting Australian jobs at risk. The post “We won’t be Uncle Sucker:” US to join EU with carbon tax on imports appeared first on RenewEconomy.

“We won’t be Uncle Sucker:” US to join EU with carbon tax on imports — RenewEconomy

July 17, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

100% Renewable UK by 2050 — RADIATION FREE LAKELAND

Note: Nuclear power is not Renewable despite the claim to be green and clean. Every energy source has an impact -yes renewables require earth minerals for manufacture of the hardware but once manufactured and operational they are not fuelled by uranium, thorium, coal, gas etc but by the free renewable fuel of wind, solar and […]

100% Renewable UK by 2050 — RADIATION FREE LAKELAND

July 17, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The top 15 wind and solar power countries in 2020 — RenewEconomy

Denmark and Uruguay generated 61% and 44% of their electricity from wind and solar in 2020. Many more source over 25% from wind and solar. The post The top 15 wind and solar power countries in 2020 appeared first on RenewEconomy.

The top 15 wind and solar power countries in 2020 — RenewEconomy

July 17, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment