Author: Bilal Cleland

The Balfour Declaration: 100 years of conflict

When the Balfour Declaration was made on 2 November 1917, Britain was at the height of its imperial power, locked in a deadly struggle with the upstart German Empire. Afraid of the possible influence of a declaration of jihad against the British Empire by the Caliph, the Sultan of Turkey, General Kitchener  in October 1914 guaranteed to the Governor of Makkah, Sherif Hussein that in return for help against the Ottomans, there would be no intervention in Arabia. Letters were exchanged between Sherif Hussein and the British Government via McMahon, the High Commissioner for Egypt. One letter on 24...

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Targeting terrorism: The Australian story

The Australian media, particularly one section of it, controlled by an American company, has a very short memory on the history of terrorism and the molly-coddling of terrorists in this country. One Prime Minister made a very firm stand against terrorism in this country, a form of terrorism which was apparently being protected by our own security agency, ASIO. In a statement praising the contribution of immigrants to this country, Whitlam commented: “It is therefore unfortunate that a minority of these migrants, enjoying the rights we offer for the free expression of views, have sought to aggravate old sus-picions and hatreds by importing the methods of terrorism to this country. My government is determined to stamp out this terrorism.”  [Tony Wright SMH 9 June 2017] The terrorists were Catholics, not Muslims, and their immediate target was the Prime Minister of Yugoslavia, Dzemal Bijedic. These terrorists had carried out a series of some 12 bombings  in the 1960s and early 1970s. They intended to assassinate Bijedic during his visit to Australia. The recently well publicized attempt at the defamation of Justice Lionel Murphy by our “Australian” media, in which all of his iconoclastic activities, as well as some of his less savoury  ‘protecting mates,’ were exposed, there was little mention of his “raid” on ASIO HQ in Melbourne. In a letter written some 9 years ago to a newsletter “The...

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Concern for religious freedom in the West

The inability of the Trump Administration to denounce the rise of white supremacy, so clearly illustrated by the swastika and Confederate flagged neo-nazi rally in Charlottesville, served to shock the civilized world.  The extreme right appears to be moving into the mainstream of American politics. Then we were presented with a contradiction by the Secretary of State. The International Religious Freedom Report for 2016  – published by the US Department of State – criticised One Nation’s federal election campaign.  [https://www.state.gov/j/drl/rls/irf/2016/eap/268714.htm] “Four senators from the One Nation Party were elected during the July federal elections on a platform which included...

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Revising history of our First Nations People

A team of archaeologists from several Australian universities, together with the Mirrar Aboriginal people, excavated the Madjedbebe rock shelter in Kakadu, near Jabiru in Australia’s Northern Territory. It came up with some surprising findings. They demonstrate that the earliest inhabitants were an innovative people who, amongst other developments, produced “the world’s oldest known edge-ground hatchets.” “We found evidence for the mixing of ochre with reflective powders made from ground mica to make a vibrant paint. Currently the oldest known rock art in the world is dated to 40,000 years ago in Sulawesi (a possible stepping stone to Australia). But...

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The resurrection of the politics of exclusion

The exclusion of certain categories of people from residence in Australia was established by the very first Act of the Commonwealth Parliament, the 1901 Immigration Restriction Act. Any undesirable immigrant could be subjected to a dictation test in any European language.  It permitted Australian officials to exclude individuals on the basis of race without being explicit.  Between 1902 and 1909, 1359 people were subjected to the test and only 59 passed it. Not one person passed it after 1909. The requirement of ‘European language’ had to be changed in 1905 due to Japanese government objections. In accordance with the...

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Other News

november, 2017

22nov10:30 am- 1:30 pmLadies High Tea For Rohingya

23nov7:30 pm- 10:30 pmSounds of Light PerthCharity Concert

24nov6:30 pm- 9:30 pmSounds of Light AdelaideCharity Concert

25nov6:00 pm- 9:00 pmSounds of Light SydneyCharity Concert

26nov3:30 pm- 6:30 pmSounds of Light MelbourneCharity Concert

27nov7:00 pm- 10:00 pmSounds of Light BrisbaneCharity Concert

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