Our dear leader loves Israel in his toes

Isi Leibler on Australian political leaders and Israel: John Howard was instinctively, as a conservative, a friend of Israel. Kevin Rudd is a remarkable personality but I didn’t think he would maintain the course as he has. I regard him as a Christian Zionist – he understands and has some sympathy for us. Australia gives…

How many balls did we crush?

As more information appears about the Bush administration’s use of torture, there is still much to learn about the role of Australia in this sordid process: The Senate Armed Services Committee has just released an exhaustive review of torture under the Bush administration that, among other revelations, torpedoes the notion that the administration only chose…

We’ve got to keep on talking

Lebanese Chess is a fascinating blog written by a Lebanese Australian. His recent post is titled, “A week of speeches“: Khatami, Halper and Loewenstein … three public speakers at Australia’s main political university, the Australian National University (ANU), in a week. I went to see them all, and nothing much out of the three surprised…

No really, I love you

Tom Switzer, former opinion editor of the Australian newspaper and research fellow at the conservative think-tank Institute of Public Affairs, redefines the term, ‘”getting too close to power“: Tom Switzer in The Spectator has a close encounter of the ex-prime-ministerial kind My wife Sarah and I recently had the wonderful experience of having John Howard…

The victim recalls a war crime

My following book review appeared in the Sydney Morning Herald on November 29: My Story: The Tale Of A Terrorist Who Wasn’t By Mamdouh Habib; with Julia Collingwood; Scribe, 272 pp, $32.95 Before tortured Australian Guantanamo Bay detainee Mamdouh Habib was released in 2005, then prime minister John Howard said his government didn’t “have any…

Shifting sands of Israel/Palestine

My following talk was presented today to a full room at Harvard University: Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government/Centre for Middle Eastern Studies ME Forum, 24 November 2008 The Shifting Sands of the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict: An Australian Perspective Antony Loewenstein Australian Labor Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, speaking in March this year at a United Israel…

War criminals dine together in style

A leading American Zionist lobby recently shamed itself by celebrating a criminal and a thug: The American Jewish Committee honored Colombian President Alvaro Uribe last night with its Light unto the Nations Award. “President Uribe is a staunch ally of the United States, a good friend of Israel and the Jewish people, and is a…

An insignificant Iraq withdrawal

My following article appears in today’s ABC Unleashed: Retired Lieutenant General Ricardo S. Sanchez, the onetime commander of US troops in Iraq, has recently released a book about his time in the country. In Wiser in Battle: A Soldier’s Story, he recalls a teleconference with US President George W. Bush soon after four contractors were…

Finally, a place to call home

Back in 2004, I interviewed a stateless refugee housed on Manus Island by the former Australian government. Aladdin Sisalem was a kind, quietly-spoken man who simply craved a better life for himself, but John Howard’s system wanted him to suffer for this desire. I met with Aladdin a few times in Melbourne after his release.…

Iraq, the Kurds and where to from here

I was recently interviewed by Peshawa Muhammed of the Kurdistani Nwe Newspaper, the publication of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan in Iraqi Kurdistan (Noam Chomsky was also interviewed recently.) The article ran on May 4: Peshawa Muhammed: Five years on, how do you assess the current US policy in Iraq? Which option do you think…