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80104e No.20545607 [Last50 Posts]

Welcome To Q Research AUSTRALIA

A new thread for research and discussion of Australia's role in The Great Awakening.

Previous thread

>>20092798 Q Research AUSTRALIA #34

Q's Posts made on Q Research AUSTRALIA threads

Wednesday 11.20.2019

>>7358352 ————————————–——– These people are stupid.

>>7358338 ————————————–——– All assets [F + D] being deployed.

>>7358318 ————————————–——– What happens when the PUBLIC discovers the TRUTH [magnitude] re: [D] party corruption?

Tuesday 11.19.2019

>>7357790 ————————————–——– FISA goes both ways.

Saturday 11.16.2019

>>7356270 ————————————–——– There is no escaping God.

>>7356265 ————————————–——– The Harvest [crop] has been prepared and soon will be delivered to the public for consumption.

Friday 11.15.2019

>>7356017 ————————————–——– "Whistle Blower Traps" [Mar 4 2018] 'Trap' keyword select provided.....

Thursday 03.28.2019

>>5945210 ————————————–——– Sometimes our 'sniffer' picks and pulls w/o applying credit file

>>5945074 ————————————–——– We LOVE you!

>>5944970 ————————————–——– USA v. LifeLog?

>>5944908 ————————————–——– It is an embarrassment to our Nation!

>>5944859 ————————————–——– 'Knowingly'

Q's Posts referencing Australia












Q's Posts referencing Australian citizens

Malcolm Turnbull (X/AUS)

Former Prime Minister of Australia, 2015 to 2018





Alexander Downer

Former Australian Liberal Party politician and former Australian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom


Cardinal George Pell

Australian Cardinal of the Catholic Church and former Prefect of the Vatican Secretariat for the Economy




Julian Assange

Australian activist, founder, editor and publisher of WikiLeaks












Virginia Roberts Giuffre

American-Australian survivor of the sex trafficking ring operated by Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell
































Q's Posts referencing The Five Eyes intelligence alliance (FVEY)

An anglophone intelligence alliance comprising Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States





"Does AUS stand w/ the US or only select divisions within the US?"


Nov 25 2018


Disclaimer: this post and the subject matter and contents thereof - text, media, or otherwise - do not necessarily reflect the views of the 8kun administration.

80104e No.20545608


are not endorsements

#34 - Part 1

Israel / Hamas Conflict - The Australian Perspective - Part 1

>>20098506 Political, Jewish leaders: Radical cleric inaction gives ‘green light’ to incendiary ‘final solution’ sermon at Bankstown’s Al Madina Dawah Centre.

>>20098526 Labor MPs break ranks to accuse Israel of ‘domination’ of Palestinians - Dozens of high-profile Labor figures, including members of the Albanese, Minns and Allan governments, have signed an open letter declaring the human rights of Palestinians have been “grossly violated” and accusing Israel of policies aimed at “the domination of one people over another”.

>>20103721 Video: ABC presenter Antoinette Lattouf sacked after anti-Israel social media posts - Lattouf drew intense criticism after she has repeatedly said videos of pro-Palestine protesters chanting “gas the Jews” at the Sydney Opera House in October were unverified.

>>20108499 Video: Media union criticises ABC’s decision to sack radio host Antoniette Lattouf - The Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance has labelled ABC radio host Antoinette Lattouf’s sacking over her social media use as “disturbing” and claimed staff from “diverse backgrounds” are “disproportionately” attacked from the public.

>>20108504 Boxing Day Test: Usman Khawaja’s black armband protest not approved, faces ICC reprimand - Usman Khawaja did not have ICC approval to wear a black armband during the first Test to mark the plight of Palestinians in Gaza, leaving him open to sanctions from the governing body.

>>20114518 ASIO director to Labor MP: Pro-Palestine rallies are a ‘pressure release’ on domestic terrorism - ASIO director-general Mike Burgess advised Labor MP Michelle Ananda-Rajah that Australia’s pro-Palestine rallies served as an important “pressure release” given a “real risk of a terror ­attack”, a letter from the backbencher to a local voter has revealed.

>>20123743 Usman Khawaja denied permission by ICC to display humanitarian logo at Boxing Day Test - Usman Khawaja has been denied permission to place a peace symbol and reference to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on his bat for the Boxing Day Test but wore the sticker at training on Sunday.

>>20123773 Video: Pro-Palestine activists target ABC office amid Antoinette Lattouf sacking - The ABC Radio’s office in Perth has been the target of vandalism by pro-Palestinian supporters, in response to the national broadcaster’s decision to fire Antoinette Lattouf earlier this week.

>>20123786 Jessica Westcott Tweet - Free Palestine Activists at #carolsbycandlelight in Melbourne

>>20127963 Carols by Candlelight interrupted by pro-Palestine protesters in Melbourne - The actions of a pro-Palestine protester who disrupted Carols by Candle light in Melbourne have been condemned by Jewish leaders who are concerned that “guerilla type tactics” will be used at New Years celebrations.

>>20127981 Security to be reviewed after pro-Palestinian protesters interrupt Carols by Candlelight - Security at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl will be reviewed after pro-Palestinian protesters stormed the stage during a live broadcast of Carols by Candlelight on Sunday night. Children were rushed off the stage as two protesters ran across it waving Palestinian flags about 8pm.

>>20128008 Woman arrested after pro-Palestine protesters disrupt Carols by Candlelight - The incident unfolded in front of tens of thousands of people at the family-friendly event and tens of thousands more watching the broadcast live from home. A woman holding a Palestinian flag ran around the stage before attempting to wrestle a microphone off hosts David Campbell and Sarah Abo. “While you’re carolling, kids are dying in Gaza,” the woman screamed.

>>20128032 Agony of an ally: Anthony Albanese’s ‘Gaza contradictions’ - Israeli ambassador Amir Maimon has accused Anthony Albanese of contradictory messages over the war with Hamas, declared the Jewish homeland’s fight against terrorism has been held to a different standard from Australia’s own operations in Afghanistan, and lamented that his citizens did not feel secure in this country.

>>20132126 Jews say they do not feel safe in their Australian home - Nina Bassat, one of Australia’s most prominent Holocaust survivors has warned that the nation was having an “anarchic reaction” to the Israel-Hamas War and a generation of Jews at risk from a wave of anti-Semitism as anti-Israel protests erupted over the Christmas week.

Disclaimer: this post and the subject matter and contents thereof - text, media, or otherwise - do not necessarily reflect the views of the 8kun administration.

80104e No.20545610

#34 - Part 2

Israel / Hamas Conflict - The Australian Perspective - Part 2

>>20136736 Australian man, his wife and brother killed in Lebanon after building hit by air strike, family says - Ibrahim and Ali Bazzi died in air strikes on the town of Bint Jbeil in Lebanon overnight. Ibrahim Bazzi, 27, travelled from Sydney to Bint Jbeil to visit his wife Shorouk Hammoud, who recently acquired an Australian visa. The couple were planning on starting their new life in Australia, according to relatives.

>>20136757 Australian Museum to amend ‘Palestine’ display after complaints about Egypt exhibition - The Australian Museum is pulling down and rewording a display at a new Ancient Egypt exhibition after the Australian Jewish Association (AJA) complained about the use of the placename “Palestine”.

>>20141880 Australian killed in Lebanon was Hezbollah fighter, terror group says - Terrorist organisation Hezbollah has said one of two Australian men killed while in a southern Lebanese town was one of its fighters, with a ceremonial funeral taking place overnight as he “rose as a martyr”.

>>20141899 Military-style funeral held for Australian 'Hezbollah fighter' killed by Israeli air strike in Lebanon - A military-style funeral has been held for an Australian man claimed to be a fighter with militant group Hezbollah, a day after he, his brother and sister-in-law were killed in an Israeli air strike.

>>20141913 Mark Dreyfus yet to confirm killed Australian’s Hezbollah links - Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus is unable to say whether Australia was aware one of two Australian brothers killed by an Israeli air strike in Lebanon may have had links to Hezbollah before the proscribed terrorist organisation claimed him as one of their own.

>>20141940 Australians should leave Lebanon now after two citizens killed, federal government warns - Australians in Lebanon should leave the country as soon as possible, warned acting Foreign Minister Mark Dreyfus, following confirmation that two citizens were killed in an Israeli airstrike.

>>20141959 Lebanon airstrike: Albanese government raises deaths of two Australians with Israel - The acting foreign minister, Mark Dreyfus, confirmed two Australians died in the Israeli airstrike in al-Dawra neighbourhood in the town of Bint Jbeil, and said the Albanese government had been in “communication” with Israel after the deaths.

>>20141981 Carols by Candlelight protester may have had help on inside - Arts Centre Melbourne, police and the main sponsors have begun talks to determine what went wrong with the security on the night of the raid and how the activists were able to turn the event into a national embarrassment.

>>20142046 Aussie killed by Israeli strike ‘had no links with Hezbollah’, friends say - Close friends of an Australian man killed in an Israeli airstrike alongside his brother, who was claimed as a martyr by Hezbollah, have rushed to defend him after his coffin was draped in the flag of the terror organisation.

>>20142058 Hezbollah and Israel: Security agencies on martyr alert at home - Intelligence agencies are ramping up efforts to prevent local violent attacks inspired by the Middle East conflict, after an Australian man killed in Lebanon by an Israeli air strike was claimed to be a fighter and martyr for Hezbollah and given a military funeral by the terror group.

>>20147535 Hezbollah claims rocket attack retribution for ‘martyred’ Australians - Hezbollah has claimed a missile attack on an Israeli village was retribution for an airstrike that killed Australian brothers, Ali and Ibrahim Bazzi, and Ibrahim’s wife Shorouq Hammoud, among others.

>>20147601 Sydney Imam: Labor should have condemned ‘heinous Israeli crime’ that killed two Australian citizens - Imam of Masjid Arrahman in Kingsgrove, Sheik Youssef Nabha says terrorist group Hezbollah should not be condemned for attacking Israel and Labor should demand Australian-Israelis leave the Jewish homeland,

>>20152517 Video: Radical groups sharing anti-Jewish handbook - Radical groups in Australia are circulating and sharing guides for anti-Israel activists, unionists and educators to sabotage and vandalise property and evade police by using encrypted communications.

>>20163221 Revealed: How anti-Jewish activists plot to stop Israeli cargo - Radical anti-Israel activists targeting Jewish interests have ­obtained a sophisticated strategy developed in the US for tracking and blockading boats and engaging unions and the trucking ­industry, to stifle the shipping company ZIM.

>>20163322 Video: Radical Sydney cleric labels Australia’s New Year’s Eve celebrations a ‘celebration of foreskin’ - On the eve of Sydney’s biggest fireworks displays in recent years, cleric Abu Ousayd - also known as Wissam Haddad - gave an incendiary sermon at Bankstown’s Al Madina Dawah Centre on Friday, slamming the celebrations and claiming that in Judaic tradition the event was instead a “day of circumcision”.

Disclaimer: this post and the subject matter and contents thereof - text, media, or otherwise - do not necessarily reflect the views of the 8kun administration.

80104e No.20545611

#34 - Part 3

Israel / Hamas Conflict - The Australian Perspective - Part 3

>>20168982 Video: Australian serving with Israeli army killed inside Gaza - An Australian man has been killed while fighting with an Israeli armoured brigade in southern Gaza. Reserves Captain Lior Sivan, 32, was serving as a tank commander when he was killed on December 19.

>>20174745 Video: Anti-Semitic Sydney cleric: ‘Jews bloodthirsty monsters’ who ‘ran like rats’ - Footage has emerged of another southwest Sydney cleric in a raging anti-Semitic sermon, calling Jews “monsters” and “thirsty for bloodshed”, and how they “ran like rats” from Hamas terrorists on October 7. The footage shows Sydney sheikh Ahmed Zoud at Lakemba’s As-Sunnah mosque on December 22, who gave a 35-minute sermon in Arabic on, what he called, “the truth of the Jews”.

>>20187569 Sheik Ahmed Zoud’s hate rants must stop, says Tony Burke - One of Labor’s most pro-Palestine ministers, Tony Burke, has called on hate preachers in his electorate to face the full force of the law over their radical sermons and said he hoped his own government would soon legislate stronger protections against anti-Semitic hate speech.

>>20187714 Sydney Mardi Gras ‘no longer safe’ for gay Jews - A key organisation representing Sydney’s gay Jewish community says it is reconsidering its participation in this year’s Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras and Fair Day events, amid fears for its members’ safety following the release of an open letter to Anthony Albanese regarding the Israel-Hamas war by Mardi Gras chief executive Gil Beckwith.

>>20187748 Kerryn Phelps and wife Jackie Stricker-Phelps join chorus of concerned gay Jews over Mardi Gras letter - Veteran gay rights campaigners Kerryn Phelps and Jackie Stricker-Phelps have joined a chorus of members of the LGBTIQA+ Jewish community expressing dismay at an open letter on the Israel-Hamas war issued by the chief executive of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras.

>>20199945 Khawaja appeal against armband sanction denied by ICC - Usman Khawaja’s reprimand for wearing a black armband onto the field during the first Test against Pakistan in Perth will stand after the International Cricket Council rejected his appeal against the sanction.

>>20199972 Melbourne Free Palestine protest marks 13th week of rallies - Thousands of protesters have braved the pouring rain to attend the pro-Palestine rally in Melbourne’s CBD for the 13th week in a row.

>>20205258 Jewish leaders take on hate clerics amid government, law enforcement inaction - Radical hate preachers face being hauled in front of the nation’s courts and human rights tribunals in a new legal push by Jewish leaders, who said they can no longer rely on governments and police to prosecute against anti-Semitism.

>>20205266 Politicians have failed to grasp ‘new reality’ of anti-Semitism - "This is not just a concern for the Jewish community. We are society’s litmus test. If Jews are not free to go about their daily lives with a sense of safety and security, then ultimately no citizen is safe." - Peter Wertheim, co-chief executive of the Executive Council of Australian Jewry - theaustralian.com.au

>>20205283 Pro-Palestinian Bluey shirt removed after BBC warning - A kids’ T-shirt showing the Bluey cast wearing Palestinian scarfs has been taken down from an online marketplace after the commercial owners of the children’s show said it was a counterfeit product, and criticised the “unauthorised use” of the Australian children’s character.

>>20205303 Video: Australia bans Nazi salute and public display of terror group symbols - Laws banning the Nazi salute and the display or sale of symbols associated with terror groups came into effect in Australia on Monday 8th January as the government responds to a rise in antisemitic incidents following the Israel-Gaza war.

>>20211887 Peter Dutton pushes stronger stance on hate speech - Peter Dutton has called for tougher hate speech laws to stop anti-Semitism, saying Jewish leaders should not have to pay legal bills for taking radical hate preachers to court.

>>20218499 ‘We’re coming for you, soon’: Man sends alleged ‘ISIS threat’ to Jewish group - Nour Mohamed has faced court accused of sending an Islamic State execution video to a Jewish group in Sydney with a chilling warning that “we are coming for you” from the city’s west, just days after Hamas’ attack on Israel.

>>20218516 Radical Indigenous leaders to embrace Palestinian cause on ‘Invasion Day’ - Hardline Aboriginal activists will demand “freedom for Palestine” and call on the Albanese government to cut all ties with Israel at their annual anti-Australia Day rallies, causing one Aboriginal leader to warn they will alienate longstanding Jewish supporters of reconciliation.

Disclaimer: this post and the subject matter and contents thereof - text, media, or otherwise - do not necessarily reflect the views of the 8kun administration.

80104e No.20545614

#34 - Part 4

Israel / Hamas Conflict - The Australian Perspective - Part 4

>>20224459 Antoinette Lattouf alleges racial discrimination in ABC Fair Work case - Journalist Antoinette Lattouf has amended her Fair Work case against the ABC to include racial discrimination after she was sacked by the broadcaster three days into a short-term contract in December.

>>20231382 Video: Australia involved in strikes on Houthi rebels in Yemen - Australia has supported strikes launched by the US and UK on Houthi rebels in Yemen who were blocking free maritime navigation. The strikes were launched in response to the Iran-backed group blockading international shipping lanes in the Red Sea in support of Palestine.

>>20231395 Labor breaks with US on Israel ‘genocide’ - The Albanese government has again broken with the US by refusing to repudiate a genocide case launched by South Africa against Israel in the UN’s top court, as crossbench senator David Pocock urges Labor to “publicly support” the international probe.

>>20244505 Penny Wong will not go to October 7 massacre sites during Israel visit, sparking fury in Jerusalem - Foreign Minister Penny Wong will not visit the southern Israeli towns where the October 7 massacres occurred, marking another break in Australia’s position from some of its closest allies whose leaders have visited the Jewish state in the aftermath of terror group Hamas’s assault.

>>20244515 ‘Not about a photo op’: Albanese defends Wong call to skip October 7 massacre sites - Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has defended Penny Wong’s decision not to visit any of the sites in southern Israel attacked by Hamas terrorists on October 7 as the foreign minister faced a barrage of criticism from the political right and left as she departed on a diplomatic mission to the Middle East.

>>20251103 Penny Wong urged by families to visit massacre sites in Israel - Australians whose loved ones are still being held captive by Hamas or were killed in the October 7 terror attacks are demanding Foreign Minister Penny Wong visit the massacre sites in southern Israel, declaring she has a duty to see in person the horrors of the attacks.

>>20251111 Secret WhatsApp messages show co-ordinated campaign to oust Antoinette Lattouf from ABC - The ABC sacked broadcaster Antoinette Lattouf after a high-level and co-ordinated letter-writing campaign from pro-Israel lobbyists that directly targeted the corporation’s chair, Ita Buttrose, and managing director David Anderson.

>>20256826 ’Our nation stands with you’: Penny Wong in emotional meeting with Israeli hostage families - Foreign Minister Penny Wong has held an emotional meeting with the families of Israeli hostages being held in Gaza, telling them Australia stands in solidarity with their plight and with the Jewish state as she begins the next critical leg of her diplomatic tour of the Middle East.

>>20256853 Australia doesn’t accept ‘premise’ of Israel genocide claim: Wong - Foreign Minister Penny Wong says Australia does not accept the “premise” of South Africa’s genocide case against Israel, giving the government’s firmest response yet on a legal action that has split Western and Muslim countries.

>>20256903 Video: New Sydney cleric outburst calls on Allah to kill Zionists ‘one by one’ - Sheik Kamal Abu Mariam of Sydney’s Roselands Mosque has given an incendiary sermon in which he prayed to Allah to “kill them (Jewish Zionists) one by one”, which could fly close to breaching NSW hate-speech laws.

>>20261642 Penny Wong warns Palestine Authority Gaza aid funding must not be misused by terrorists - Foreign Minister Penny Wong has told Palestinian Authority officials that Australia’s latest funding package for Gaza, intended to pay for civilian healthcare and childhood education, must be managed carefully to prevent the taxpayer resources being misused by terrorists.

>>20266707 Labor ‘dragging feet’ on Hamas massacre ruling - The Albanese government has failed to formally designate as an overseas terrorist act the massacre of 1200 Israelis by Hamas on ­October 7. The failure to make the declaration more than 100 days after the attacks means Australian Jews who lost loved ones in Israel are not eligible for financial assistance through the Victim of Terrorism Overseas Payment under the Social Security Act.

>>20266741 Delay on Hamas terror call ‘perplexing’ - One of the country’s most prominent Holocaust survivors has called the government’s delay to designate Hamas’ October 7 atrocities an overseas terrorist act “incomprehensible”, saying it sent a message that what happened to Jews “did not matter”. Holocaust survivor Nina Bassat said she was perplexed and saddened.

Disclaimer: this post and the subject matter and contents thereof - text, media, or otherwise - do not necessarily reflect the views of the 8kun administration.

80104e No.20545615

#34 - Part 5

Israel / Hamas Conflict - The Australian Perspective - Part 5

>>20266765 Clerics trigger hate-speech probe by NSW Premier Chris Minns - NSW Premier Chris Minns will tackle hate speech head-on with his government launching a wide-ranging review into the state’s current legal protections given concerns over its effectiveness amid a raft of incendiary anti-Semitic sermons across southwest Sydney.

>>20272111 Video: Labor MP Julian Hill says Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is 'hell-bent on formalising policy of apartheid' - Labor backbencher Julian Hill says Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is "hell-bent on formalising a policy of apartheid" and has called on Australia to fast-track formal recognition of a Palestinian state.

>>20272130 Ignorance the basis for poisonous prejudice - "Australia’s character as a successful multicultural, multifaith, multiracial nation where everyone is equal is under threat, with anti-Semitic incidents up by over 700 per cent. Australian Jews are living in fear. How does a Middle Eastern conflict cause threats against fellow Australians? The answer is blatant anti-Semitism supported by lies and gaslighting that would make Goebbels blush. These bigots claim Israel is a colonial state; the Jews are settlers who’ve stolen Palestinian land and refuse a Palestinian state. The opposite is true. Jews are indigenous people of Israel and have lived there since before recorded history. In 700 to 600BC, their kingdoms were conquered; their homelands subject to repeated conquest and colonisation thereafter, including by the Romans, Byzantines, Arabs and Ottoman Empire. The creation of the modern state of Israel was an act of decolonisation." - Nyunggai Warren Mundine, Director of the Indigenous Forum, Centre for Independent Studies - theaustralian.com.au

>>20311665 Mardi Gras group Pride in Protest claims Zionist Jews are ‘proud of genocide’ - A Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras offshoot group has accused Zionist Jews of being “proud of genocide” and the “mass murder of children”, hitting back at LGBTIQA+ Jewish group Day­enu, which earlier this month said it was reconsidering participating in this year’s Mardi Gras because of concerns about safety.

>>20311675 Australia pauses funding for United Nations agency amid October 7 terror allegations - Australia has paused funding for a key United Nations agency in Gaza after allegations emerged some staff were involved in the October 7 attacks. On Friday, UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) commissioner-general Philippe Lazzarini revealed Israeli authorities had provided information about the alleged involvement of “several” employees in the attack. On Saturday, Australia’s Foreign Minister, Senator Penny Wong, released a statement saying the allegations were “deeply concerning” and funding for the agency would be “temporarily paused”.

>>20316774 ‘Unmask you’: Premier Chris Minns’ threat as Nazis gather in Sydney - NSW Premier Chris Minns has warned he is prepared to unmask people involved in the latest neo-Nazi gatherings in Sydney after police halted two demonstrations in less than 24 hours.

>>20344791 UN aid agency ‘saving Gazan kids’, says Penny Wong - Penny Wong has signalled she wants to quickly reinstate funding to the UN’s aid agency in Gaza accused of aiding Hamas’s October 7 massacre of Israelis, declaring it is “the only organisation” delivering assistance to 1.4 million desperate Palestinians.

>>20344826 Video: Video analysis finds no evidence of 'gas the Jews' being chanted at Sydney Opera House protest, despite witness statements - NSW Police say forensic analysis has found no evidence the phrase "gas the Jews" was chanted in videos circulating online from a pro-Palestinian rally at the Sydney Opera House in October.

>>20371174 Video: Nova Peris says Aboriginal flag ‘misappropriated’ by Palestine protesters - Former Labor senator Nova Peris has launched a campaign to reclaim the Aboriginal flag from the war in Gaza, arguing that Indigenous symbols and chants have been misappropriated at pro-Palestine rallies. Peris, who led the campaign to free the Aboriginal flag from copyright restrictions, said she was worried that Indigenous activists could be seen to be turning a blind eye to antisemitism.

>>20383178 Leak, doxxing of almost 600 Jewish creatives ‘very distressing… with really serious consequences’ - Federal Labor MP Josh Burns has called the doxxing of hundreds of Jewish creatives in a private WhatsApp group “very distressing”, warning it could result in “really serious consequences”. On Thursday, high-profile pro-Palestine activists, including feminist author Clementine Ford, began sharing on social media a link to a spreadsheet that had leaked the names, occupations and social media profiles of almost 600 Jewish creatives purportedly from the WhatsApp group.

Disclaimer: this post and the subject matter and contents thereof - text, media, or otherwise - do not necessarily reflect the views of the 8kun administration.

80104e No.20545616

#34 - Part 6

Israel / Hamas Conflict - The Australian Perspective - Part 6

>>20389026 Leaders and business savage Australia’s rising anti-Semitism - Widespread anti-Semitic attacks on small, medium and large Jewish-linked firms have been savaged by prominent Australians and the peak business body as authorities assess evidence of offences after the October 7 atrocities. Government agencies and police face pressure to deal with a wave of attacks against Jewish businesses that also include a heavy focus on vulnerable smaller enterprises.

>>20389031 ‘This isn’t advocacy’: Social posts on distant conflict tear at close community - It was a little over a week ago that Maggie May Moshe decided that Melbourne’s Thornbury no longer felt like a safe place for Jews. She was standing amid High Street’s rumbling clatter in tears, furiously scraping at anti-Israeli stickers someone had plastered on the windows of the gift shop she’d owned and run with her husband Joshua for the past seven years. A passing young woman stopped to watch what she was doing. “You should leave them up,” the woman said. “Unless you support genocide, you shouldn’t take them down.”

>>20389043 Australian professor Ghassan Hage sacked by German research institute for ‘incompatible values’ - A renowned German research institute has sacked an Australian scholar for what it called “incompatible values” after a series of anti-Israel social media posts by the visiting Melbourne University professor. On Thursday, the Max Planck Society, funded by the country’s federal and state governments, said it had cut ties with professor Ghassan Hage. “Recently, he (Professor Hage) has shared a series of posts on social media expressing views that are incompatible with the core values of the Max Planck Society. The Max Planck Society has therefore ended its working relationship with Prof Hage. The freedoms enshrined in (the German constitution) are invaluable to the Max Planck Society.”

>>20405618 Federal government moves to criminalise 'doxxing' after publication of Jewish Australians' WhatsApp messages - The federal government will move to criminalise "doxxing" after the details of a WhatsApp group involving hundreds of Jewish Australians were published online. The government said the legislation, aimed at outlawing the practice of publishing personal details with malicious intent, would be brought to parliament as soon as possible.

>>20417036 The faces of a hideous hatred that has no place in our country - A social-justice warrior who urged people to “let Zionists know no f.cking peace”, an artist who called them “genocidal racists”, and a children’s author who praised terrorist organisations are the anti-Israel activists who helped disseminate the details of hundreds of Jewish Australians across the internet. The Australian can reveal that Elsa Tuet-Rosenberg, Zee Mazloum and Matt Chun, whose real name is Matt Jones, were prolific sharers of the leaked personal details of Jewish creatives from a WhatsApp group, which led to Anthony Albanese moving to ban the online form of harassment.

>>20417056 City of Melbourne to debate Israel-Hamas ceasefire motion - Melbourne City Council will vote on a motion calling for a ceasefire in the Israel-Hamas war. Independent councillor Jamal Hakim has proposed the council back a motion asking the federal government to advocate for a list of seven demands. They include a permanent ceasefire, the release of all Israeli hostages and imprisoned Palestinians, and to advocate for “an end to illegal Israeli settlements and the illegal occupation of Palestinian territories”.

>>20434098 Doxxers on notice they will face jail time under new laws - Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus has signalled new anti-doxxing laws will be aimed at criminalising the disclosure of a broad range of personal information for malicious intent, putting activists and others on notice that they could face jail time for leaking private details without consent. The federal government plans, announced last week in response to the publication of the names and details of hundreds of Jewish creatives and academics by pro-Palestinian activists, has sparked a debate about what constitutes doxxing and how best to use the law to protect individuals’ privacy and safety, while balancing free speech and public interest considerations.

Disclaimer: this post and the subject matter and contents thereof - text, media, or otherwise - do not necessarily reflect the views of the 8kun administration.

80104e No.20545617

#34 - Part 7

Israel / Hamas Conflict - The Australian Perspective - Part 7

>>20439323 Morrison accuses UN of antisemitism, decries ‘persecution’ of Australian Jews - Former prime minister Scott Morrison has accused the United Nations of antisemitism at a rally in Sydney while warning a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is not currently viable. Thousands gathered in The Domain on Sunday for the event organised by a Christian pastor to support members of the Jewish community, under the slogan “Never Again” Is Now. Morrison, who travelled to southern Israel with former British prime minister Boris Johnson in the aftermath of the October 7 terror attacks, told Jewish members of the crowd “we honour you as fellow Australians”.

>>20477863 Video: Anti-Israel rally hears martyrdom glorified on city street - Martyrdom in the name of Palestine was celebrated during a Melbourne CBD street protest where jihad and support for Yemen also was raised, it has been revealed. Covert video shows supporters clapping when a speaker last week warned that the Palestinians would not be defeated, because its people were prepared to die for their cause.

>>20477871 Push to deny visa for Palestinian hijacker who praised Hamas terrorists - A Palestinian activist who hijacked two planes and labelled Hamas operatives responsible for the October 7 attacks “freedom fighters” is facing a push by Jewish groups to deny her an Australian visa. Leila Khaled is billed as the keynote speaker at June’s Ecosocialism event in Perth hosted by the Socialist Alliance and Green Left media outlet, but the Albanese government has given a strong signal it would block any attempt for Khaled to travel here, citing anti-terrorism laws.

>>20477879 Labor told to block pro-Palestinian plane hijacker from socialist conference - Prominent Jewish leaders are urging senior cabinet ministers in the Albanese government to intervene to prevent a pro-Palestinian militant who took part in two plane hijackings from appearing at a socialist conference scheduled to be held in Perth this year. In a letter addressed to Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus, Home Affairs Minister Clare O’Neil and Immigration Minister Andrew Giles, the Executive Council of Australian Jewry urged the government to deny Leila Khaled an Australian visa warning she must not be allowed to travel to Australia or appear virtually at the event.

>>20488529 Islamic Council of Victoria president Adel Salman describes Hamas’s October 7 attack as ‘legitimate resistance’ - Islamic Council of Victoria president Adel Salman has failed to condemn the October 7 massacre of 1200 Israelis by Hamas, and instead says it is “absolutely legitimate” for Palestinians to “resist” on that day. The Muslim community leader appeared on Radio National Breakfast to describe the actions of the October 7 terrorist attacks as legitimate. “It is absolutely legitimate for the Palestinians to try to break the siege of Gaza,” Mr Salman said. “I’m not going to condemn the Palestinians for resisting. I’m not going to condemn Palestinians for trying to break their siege on their territory.”

>>20525168 Allegra Spender ‘uninvited’ from Jewish event over UNRWA split - Teal MP Allegra Spender has had her invitation to speak at a Jewish charity event cancelled, after she pushed for funding to be restored to the UN agency in Gaza despite its links to Hamas. Ms Spender had been scheduled to speak at the 25th anniversary of Jewish non-profit B’nai B’rith’s Courage to Care initiative next week, with the community organisation telling supporters that a “mutual agreement” had been reached that she would withdraw.

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80104e No.20545619

#34 - Part 8

Australian Politics and Society - Part 1

>>20098412 Video: NT chief minister Natasha Fyles resigns following conflict of interest claims - The chief minister of the Northern Territory, Natasha Fyles, has resigned over her shares in a manganese mine that as health minister she declined to investigate.

>>20098545 Troop boost to Middle East but no ship to Red Sea - Australia is unlikely to send a ­warship to join a dangerous new mission in the Red Sea but is set to deploy more personnel to the Middle East, amid pressure on the Albanese government to respond to a US request for Australia to be involved.

>>20103699 Anthony Albanese: peace of mind but no warship for Red Sea - Anthony Albanese has declared Australia is not just an observer in the defence of global freedom and the rule-based order at the same time as his government is set to reject a US Navy request to send a warship to the Red Sea to help ­secure a vital trade route under ­attack from Iran-based militants.

>>20103702 Why is the government afraid, unwilling or unable to send a warship to Red Sea when our allies ask? - "The Albanese government’s all-but-certain decision to refuse a US Navy request to send a warship to the Red Sea is an embarrassment for Australia. The US was not asking for a fleet, it was asking for a single ship to operate in an area where the navy has proven expertise." - Cameron Stewart - theaustralian.com.au

>>20103729 Prime Minister Anthony Albanese holds first official meeting with New Zealand counterpart Christopher Luxon.

>>20108451 Video: Terror leader Abdul Nacer Benbrika to walk free after Supreme Court order - Convicted terror cell leader Abdul Nacer Benbrika will walk free from prison on Tuesday on a strict supervision order, ending a years-long legal battle waged by the government to keep him behind bars beyond his sentence.

>>20108573 Donald Trump’s return could hurt Australia, warn business leaders - Australian business leaders have sounded the alarm about Donald Trump’s potential return to power next year, warning his trade plan would smash the economy and betray our alliance. The former president - who is leading Joe Biden in the polls and could be confirmed as the Republican candidate within weeks – is promising to hit all imports to the US with a universal 10 per cent tariff. The radical policy would breach Australia’s free trade agreement with the US and harm domestic businesses that exported $30bn in goods and services to our closest ally last year.

>>20114546 Security agencies mobilise to stem attack on St Vincent’s, operator of 10 hospitals and 26 aged-care facilities in NSW, Queensland and Victoria - Cyber criminals have hacked into one of Australia’s biggest health networks, stealing data in an attack that has set off alarm bells across the nation. Acting National Cyber Security Co-ordinator Hamish Hansford confirmed he was working with the health network, alongside the National Office of Cyber Security and the Australian Signals Directorate to contain the breach and investigate possible damage.

>>20114582 Video: Alameddine crime family associate charged over FriendlyJordies firebombing - An associate of the Alameddine crime family has been charged over last year’s firebombing of the Bondi house of political commentator and YouTube satirist Jordan Shanks, known online as FriendlyJordies. Tufi Junior Tauese-Auelua, 37, appeared at Waverley Court on Wednesday charged with two counts of damaging property by fire in company.

>>20114699 ‘Moving towards violence’: Authorities alert to radicalised sovereign citizens - The Australian Federal Police have revealed they’re targeting sovereign citizen groups who pose a risk of violence, while experts on anti-government extremists warn the threat must be balanced with the sensitive handling of mental health.

>>20128051 Indigenous voice referendum ‘not my loss’, Anthony Albanese declares - Anthony Albanese’s claim that his failed referendum was not a personal loss for him has sparked anger among top figures in the Yes campaign, with one Aboriginal leader indicating the remarks were proof white Australia would take no responsibility for the voice’s rejection.

>>20128077 ‘It feels good helping someone who helps others’: How Jess brought Christmas cheer to Maree - A free Christmas lunch has extended beyond the halls of a church in Melbourne’s north-east, as volunteers delivered meals, hampers and Christmas cheer to those in need. One of the eight households the Diamond Creek Uniting Church volunteers visited on Monday was that of Maree Minns. Volunteer Jess shared a Christmas hug with Minns and delivered a meal of three meats and a salad.

>>20128098 The horror of Islamic State, then the gift of a child: My Christmas to remember - Andrew Hastie, federal opposition spokesman for defence. He served with the SASR from 2010 until 2015 - theage.com.au

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80104e No.20545620

#34 - Part 9

Australian Politics and Society - Part 2

>>20132098 Video: Please don’t forget about Ukraine. This war is about Australia too - "Australia has been an absolutely loyal and active friend of Ukraine during its existential fight, which continues every day on battlefields if not in your headlines. We especially thank the government for most recently extending the training it is providing in the UK to Ukrainian troops. I have written to the Australian government to warn that Russia intends to make this a brutal northern winter for Ukrainians by again targeting their energy infrastructure. Ukraine has had to ask for Australia’s further support regarding energy supply and energy equipment to keep the lights and the heat on. We need Australian coal for the winter." - Vasyl Myroshnychenko, Ukrainian ambassador - theage.com.au

>>20141992 Wieambilla shooting: lawyers for Donald Day Jr mount freedom-of-speech defence over alleged threats to police - A US conspiracy theorist linked to the Wieambilla shooters has argued he was not seriously expressing an intent for violence when he said “the devils come for us, they fucking die”, and as such should be protected by the US constitution’s first amendment.

>>20142018 Yakult Australia targeted in cyber attack, employee files published on dark web - Iconic probiotic company Yakult Australia has been hit by a significant cyber attack that has seen its company records and sensitive employee documents, such as passports, published on the dark web.

>>20147663 Red Sea attacks: Peter Dutton says Australian Navy should be sent for sake of economy - Opposition Leader Peter Dutton has claimed Labor’s decision to focus on its Indo-Pacific strategy over a US-led mission in the Red Sea will hurt Australians at home, as the cost of international shipping delays compounds backlogs from industrial action at local terminals.

>>20147812 Donald Day Jr, US sovereign citizen linked to Wieambilla murders, was prepared for deadly 'last stand' with police, court hears - An American extremist linked to the Wieambilla killers claims he wished he had joined in on their massacre of Queensland police officers and threatened to kill the FBI agents who arrested him, a US court has heard.

>>20147954 John Howard would not back Donald Trump to be president again - "John Howard would not vote for Donald Trump if he had a vote in the US presidential election next year because the former president failed to accept the outcome of the 2020 election and fraudulently tried to overturn the result. He said Mr Trump was utterly “unfit” to return to the presidency." - Troy Bramston - theaustralian.com.au

>>20152545 Noel Pearson breaks silence on Indigenous voice referendum on stage with Stan Grant at Woodford Folk Festival - Ex-News Corp and AAP photographer, David Kapernick said on social media that Mr Pearson accused Anthony Albanese of “running away” from indigenous affairs. “Noel Pearson and Stan Grant at Woodford Folk festival discussing what to do now after referendum. Not impressed with Albanese … says he’s running away and will do nothing,”

>>20152674 Trump-Biden rematch bodes ill for US and world - "What a miserable year for American politics and democracy worldwide a Trump victory in 2024 would be. What message would it send to Russia and Ukraine? What would it do to the US relationship with China? Would it put nations such as Australia in an awkward position balancing relationships? Could US allies be even remotely certain Trump would have their back in a crisis? And what would the return of Trump say about the decline of US hegemony? The biggest risk of Trump returning to the presidency isn’t the short-term chaos. It is the long-term cultural impact such a result would have - a profound shift in how the US did business, and what might come next. This is why Trump is a threat to democracy. He represents yet another erosion in support for its ideals because if he wins he’ll do so legitimately." - Peter van Onselen, professor of politics and public policy at the University of Western Australia and Griffith University - theaustralian.com.au

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80104e No.20545621

#34 - Part 10

Australian Politics and Society - Part 3

>>20157935 ‘Deafening silence’ from government on Indigenous affairs: Sean Gordon - Anthony Albanese is facing calls from both sides of the voice ­debate to lay out his “plan B” for reconciliation early in the new year, with Liberals for Yes leader Sean Gordon accusing Labor of “deafening silence” on Indigenous policy since the referendum.

>>20158451 Radical left-wing political journalist John Pilger dies in London aged 84 - Renowned radical left-wing political activist and journalist John Pilger has died aged 84. Mr Pilger, born and raised in Sydney, gained international fame for his long career as a writer and documentary filmmaker waging war on what he saw as political and economic injustices in the world. He was a fierce and relentless critic of Australian, British and American foreign policy.

>>20163152 Crown Prince Frederik, Princess Mary to become rulers of Denmark following surprise abdication by queen - Tasmanian-born Mary Donaldson will become queen of Denmark following a surprise announcement from the country's reigning monarch, Margrethe II, that she would be stepping down.

>>20163169 How Australia’s Mary Donaldson went from commoner to Danish Queen - An unconventional journey from Australia’s middle class to European royalty began in an unremarkable bar in Sydney in 2000. Twenty-three years later, in what has been called a “real-life fairytale”, Mary Donaldson, a former real estate manager from Tasmania, is poised to become the queen of Denmark.

>>20168965 Freed asylum seeker Mohammed Ali Nadari back behind bars in Sydney - Mohammed Ali Nadari, 45, was one of the 148 asylum seekers released under a landmark High Court decision that ruled that indefinite detention was unlawful. On New Year’s Eve, the AFP revealed it had arrested Nadari for allegedly failing to comply with his visa-mandated curfew.

>>20169001 ‘This will be unsettling’: Victorian court hack may expose sensitive witness testimony - Sex abuse victims and underworld informers could be at risk of exposure after a cyberattack on Victoria’s court system gave hackers access to video recordings provided under witness protection and at trials protected by suppression orders.

>>20174768 Video: I’m evil no more: Abdul Nacer Benbrika’s first interview after prison release - Australia’s most notorious terrorist has broken his silence, claiming he is a changed man and Australians should no longer be afraid of him. Abdul Nacer Benbrika and his loved ones said their family was “just like any other”.

>>20174777 Anthony Albanese demands release of documents containing details on the Iraq War - Anthony Albanese has demanded the National Archives release unpublished records on the Iraq War, warning Labor will “take further action” if the 20-year-old documents that could shed led on why Australia joined the conflict are not made public.

>>20180437 Repost from Q Research General #24756 - ICYMI Q+ was here yesterday

>>20180437 Repost from Q Research General #24743 - V2. Nothing Can Stop What Is Coming. - https://truthsocial.com/@realDonaldTrump - Happy New Year. It will be a historic one. MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!!!

>>20180437 Donald J. Trump Truth - Happy New Year. It will be a historic one. MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!!!

>>20180647 ‘Urgent need’: Albanese pushed on alternative to legislated Voice following referendum defeat - A top Indigenous group has urged Labor to act quickly after the Voice referendum to counter Indigenous disadvantage while Australians remained focused on the issue, and pushed to mandate consultation with First Nations leaders.

>>20180655 Serbian army officer Zeljko Badza accused of war crimes including killing footballer’s granddad - A former Dubrovnik army officer who fled to Australia ten years ago has been charged with war crimes committed during the Balkans conflict in December 1991. Zeljko Badza, now 63, is accused of the murder of six civilians including the grandfather of the Croatian national football team captain Luka Modric.

>>20187811 ‘Let teens access assisted dying’, says ACT Human Rights Commission - The ACT Human Rights Commission has called for teenagers to be allowed to access voluntary assisted dying, arguing that capping the scheme at the age of 18 infringes on young people's right to receive health care “without discrimination”.

>>20187942 OPINION: If Trump returns to the White House, should we rethink the US alliance? - "We know what a second Trump administration would look like - Trump and his supporters have told us. Of particular concern to our own security alliance should be Trump’s plans to pack the military and Department of Defence with loyal toadies and then use them to attack the rule of law." - Dr Emma Shortis, senior researcher in the International & Security Affairs Program at independent think-tank, The Australia Institute - theage.com.au

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80104e No.20545624

#34 - Part 11

Australian Politics and Society - Part 4

>>20193851 Republic on ice after Indigenous voice referendum failure - Labor has junked plans to hold a republic referendum in the next term of parliament, with the ­Albanese government vowing to keep its focus on the cost of living after losing public support during the voice debate.

>>20193868 Anthony Albanese confirms King Charles visit later this year - A government spokesperson told The Australian that “the Prime Minister enjoys a warm relationship with the King, and looks forward to welcoming His Majesty to Australia later this year”. The royal visit would be the first since King Charles’s accession to the throne and the first visit to Australia by the sitting monarch since Queen Elizabeth II in October 2011.

>>20199983 Voice campaigner Thomas Mayo calls to legislate the same sort of body the country voted against - One of the most prominent ­Indigenous “Yes” campaigners at last year’s defeated referendum has backed a legislated Voice to Parliament, less than three months after Australians rejected the plan to entrench one in the constitution.

>>20211922 Morrison enlists former VP Pence to write foreword for Christian memoir - Former prime minister Scott Morrison’s book canvassing his Christian faith has been endorsed by fellow high-profile Christian and former US vice president Mike Pence. Pence, who served as Donald Trump’s vice president and who is well known for his own evangelical views, has written the foreword to Morrison’s book.

>>20211957 Secret society Freemasons throws open its doors in Cairns to dispel myths - "Conspiracy theorists have accused Freemasons of being behind world wars, starting the American revolution, worshipping Satan and even riding goats. But here in far north Queensland, two men are happy to throw open the doors to their not-so-secret club to try to dispel some myths. Raja Chohan, grand master of the district Grand Lodge of Carpentaria, and fellow member Duncan Walker, are offering a glimpse into the workings of a society usually shrouded in mystery." - Phil Brandel - abc.net.au

>>20211957 Q Post #1630 - Why are Freemasons on the scene of most shooting locations? Openly giving interviews or in background shots? Symbolism will be their downfall. Q - https://qanon.pub/#1630 - https://qalerts.pub/?q=freemason

>>20218556 US government urges court not to drop charges against Donald Day, the extremist linked to Wieambilla shooting - The US government has urged a court in Arizona to reject a request by American extremist, Donald Day Jr for charges against him be dropped.

>>20218577 Woolworths dumps Australia Day merchandise from all stores, cites ‘gradual decline’ in demand - Woolies had confirmed its Australia Day merchandise has been dumped from stores across the nation and will no longer be sold, citing a “gradual decline” in demand for the merchandise over the years and “broader discussion” about the January 26 date and “what it means” to different parts of the community.

>>20224502 Video: Violence and looting erupt in PNG amid police, public servant pay ‘glitch’ - At least 10 people have reportedly died after violence erupted in Papua New Guinea’s capital on Wednesday when a payroll “glitch” sparked angry protests by police, soldiers and public servants, who surrounded the nation’s parliament and Prime Minister James Marape’s office.

>>20224522 Video: Violent riots in PNG leave 16 people dead, as MP calls for PM James Marape to step down - Sixteen people have died in violent riots in Papua New Guinea after some residents took advantage of police being on strike on Wednesday to set shops and businesses alight in the capital. Local security services described the rioting overnight as total anarchy.

>>20224547 Video: Peter Dutton blasts Woolworths for not carrying Australia Day merchandise - Peter Dutton has called for Australians to boycott one of the nation’s biggest supermarkets for its decision to stop stocking shelves with Australia Day merchandise, declaring the move by Woolworths was “against the national interest”.

>>20224564 Online safety regulator lashes X, formerly Twitter, over failure to police hate - The social media platform X, formerly Twitter, has put Australian users at greater risk since Elon Musk took over, according to Australia's eSafety commissioner Julie Inman Grant

>>20240946 Alleged Hells Angels chief snuck into Thailand on private jet after fleeing Sydney, say police - Rodrigo Elices, alleged leader of the Hells Angels bikie gang wanted in NSW after a drug house in Kogarah caught fire in October 2022, snuck into Thailand on a private plane with a false passport before being pulled from a luxury villa hideout, local officials claim.

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80104e No.20545626

#34 - Part 12

Australian Politics and Society - Part 5

>>20244542 The Queen made in Australia - A highly emotional King Frederik X has acceded to the Danish throne, sealing the special moment with a kiss with his wife, Australian-born Queen Mary.

>>20251136 Workforce crisis threatens to put two more Anzac frigates out of service - Defence is looking at mothballing up to two more of the navy’s frontline Anzac-class frigates as crippling crew shortages undermine the nation’s military capabilities.

>>20251146 Man facing jail over alleged Nazi salute says he still performs it daily - Prominent Melbourne white supremacist Jacob Hersant has responded to allegations he performed the Nazi salute just days after it was outlawed in Victoria, saying he does not regret it - even if it means spending time behind bars.

>>20257321 "This message needs to be viewed by every Australian; and every Australian needs to stand up for Australia .. We've bent over to appease the Aussie-haters long enough. I'm taking a stand. I'm standing up because of the hundreds of thousands who died fighting in wars for this country, and for the Australian flag." - Bob Katter

>>20261652 Grounded Taipan helicopters already stripped for parts, Australia tells Ukraine - Australia has refused Ukraine’s request to donate its retired fleet of Taipan helicopters, saying it is not feasible to return them to flying condition. In a blow to Ukraine’s bid to bolster its air defences, Australia’s 45 Taipan MRH-90 aircraft will instead continue to be dismantled, stripped for spare parts and then buried in an undisclosed defence site.

>>20261661 Wieambilla shooting: Donald Day Jr allegedly had buckets of ammunition and threatened FBI agents, US court told - A US conspiracy theorist linked to the Wieambilla shooters allegedly held a significant stockpile of weaponry, including five-gallon buckets of ammunition, and made threats to kill five FBI agents, telling them he would “come for every f*cking one of you”, court documents reveal.

>>20272208 Video: Alleged Russian gangster charged after $1m cash, explosives seized in Melbourne - An alleged member of a Russian organised crime gang and two other men have been charged after explosives, firearms and $1 million in illicit cash were seized by police.

>>20281751 Voice architect Tom Calma leads call for Australia’s first Indigenous governor-general - One of the nation’s most respected Indigenous rights campaigners, Tom Calma, has backed in the appointment of an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander person to be the next governor-general, with the King’s current representative - David Hurley - due to wind up his five-year term by the middle of this year.

>>20281763 Cricket Australia to honour First Nations people on Australia Day - CA is keen to promote inclusivity and respect from patrons regardless of their view on the date itself, which is widely viewed as a day of mourning by First Nations people.

>>20281774 NSW Premier Chris Minns urges Cricket Australia to ‘revisit’ decision to sidestep Australia Day celebrations - Mr Minns questioned Cricket Australia’s decision, saying it was “extremely strange”. “This is a day for us all to celebrate with your family and friends, recognise that we live in the greatest country on Earth. I definitely will be doing that,” he told 2GB.

>>20281784 Victorian Coalition withdraws Aboriginal treaty support, citing cultural heritage concerns - The Shadow Aboriginal Affairs Minister and Victorian Nationals leader, Peter Walsh, said the Coalition made the decision because of mounting concerns over delays being caused by cultural heritage processes.

>>20281804 ‘Indoctrination’: Childcare kids told land stolen from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people - Toddlers and pre-schoolers in some childcare centres are being taught that Australia was stolen from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, in ceremonies branded as “indoctrination’’ on the eve of Australia Day.

>>20287589 Video: ‘More appropriate date’: Pat Cummins joins push to shift Australia Day - Pat Cummins’ plea to change the date of Australia Day is set to embolden cricket bosses to defy public outrage and double down on the low key treatment of the day.

>>20287616 Video: Cricket Australia boss Nick Hockley left speechless after grilling from radio host - The boss of Cricket Australia has been left speechless over a grilling by a radio host over the sporting body’s decision to ban the words “Australia Day” during Friday’s Test cricket match. Fordham repeatedly grilled the cricket boss before saying “it’s like saying you want people to celebrate Christmas but they can’t mention Santa Claus”. An uncomfortable moment of silence followed, with only the sound of Hockley’s laboured breathing audible over the airwaves. “Are you there Nick?” Fordham asked. “I think I’ve explained our position,” Hockley said.

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80104e No.20545629

#34 - Part 13

Australian Politics and Society - Part 6

>>20287622 Key Liberals lend support to an Indigenous governor-general - Former Coalition Indigenous Australians spokesman Julian Leeser has endorsed an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander as ­the nation’s next governor-general, suggesting Tom Calma, Ken Wyatt, Marcia Langton and Patrick Dodson as viable options.

>>20287632 Medibank hacker Aleksandr Ermakov a Russian national punished with sanctions - The Albanese government has named Russian man Aleksandr Ermakov as the perpetrator of the October 2022 Medibank data breach, imposing new sanctions on the hacker over the nation’s worst-ever cyber attack.

>>20287640 Scott Morrison will quit parliament and spark Cook by-election to join a string of global strategy firms - The Australian has confirmed that Scott Morrison will quit politics at the end of February to join a string of global strategic advising firms triggering a pre-budget by-election in the federal southern Sydney seat of Cook.

>>20293914 Steve Smith joins Pat Cummins in call for Australia Day date change - Former Australian captain Steve Smith has followed the current skipper Pat Cummins in, saying he thinks Australia Day should be celebrated on a more appropriate date.

>>20293988 Scott Morrison quits to join global defence firms with Mike Pompeo, Robert O’Brien - Scott Morrison will quit politics at the end of February to join global strategic and defence firms with former US secretary of state Mike Pompeo and former Trump security adviser Robert O’Brien, triggering a pre-budget federal by-election in the southern Sydney seat of Cook.

>>20293998 Call for US and UK sanctions on Russian hacker Aleksandr Ermakov - The Albanese government has asked the US and Britain to match newly imposed Australian sanctions on Russian hacker Aleksandr Ermakov, who was named on Tuesday as the perpetrator of the October 2022 Medibank cyber attack.

>>20294008 Here’s what happens if Trump or Haley beat Biden - "Unlike his previous presidency, this time, Trump and his close advisers have mapped out exactly how they will implement their policies quickly and swiftly. Most of the commentary has concentrated on Trump’s court battles. It’s time to look at the policies. We will be dealing with a very different US. Many Australians will want Australia to follow Trump in some policies." - Robert Gottliebsen - theaustralian.com.au

>>20294025 OPINION: Divider-in-Chief seizes Republican crown, but not yet America’s - "Trump never broke 50 per cent approval during his presidency or in the years since. He was a minority president. He is the Divider-in-Chief. This year, in courtrooms across the country, he is the Defendant-in-Chief. As the reality of Trump’s being the nominee and poised to return to the White House finally sinks in big time, as it is doing at this very moment, Biden needs every edge within his grasp." - Bruce Wolpe, senior fellow at the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney - theage.com.au

>>20299952 Melbourne statues of Queen Victoria and Captain Cook vandalised on Australia Day eve - Police are investigating after a Melbourne statue of Captain Cook was sawn off at the ankles and a monument to Queen Victoria daubed in red paint on the eve of Australia Day.

>>20299956 Activist vandals ‘are ignorant of our history’ after Captain Cook statue attacked - Vandals who chopped down a century-old statue of James Cook on the eve of Australia Day have been branded as “ignorant”. Bella d’Abrera, director of the Institute of Public Affairs’ Foundations of Western Civilisation Program, described the attack as an outrage and branded the vandals as ignorant of history, as the explorer was killed a decade before the First Fleet arrived in 1788.

>>20299966 'You can only make that mistake once': How the Australian Signals Directorate identified the Medibank hacker - The Medibank hacker had a weakness: his ego. And this helped cyber warriors in the Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) identify Aleksandr Ermakov as responsible for the nation's worst cyberhack, which saw private details of almost 10 million Australians leaked.

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80104e No.20545630

#34 - Part 14

Australian Politics and Society - Part 7

>>20300007 Stunning revolt back against political, corporate garbage - "I decided to collect 12 key policies of Donald Trump simply to explain to readers, including myself, what was happening below the public Trump bluster and court battles. I made a minimum of comments on those Trump polices which cover issues like migration, crime, gender, buying a house, tax cuts, tariffs, local manufacturing and of course lower energy costs as the carbon debate is turned on its head. To my astonishment, it sparked a reader frenzy. While the drawbacks of Trump were clearly expressed, the majority of readers embraced his policies with enthusiasm and urged Peter Dutton to copy them. And, of course, none of the Trump policies involved Indigenous Australians or Australia Day. Some invited Trump to come to Australia. They wanted clear policies and leadership." - Robert Gottliebsen - theaustralian.com.au

>>20300060 Kevin Rudd in rush to mend fences in case of second Donald Trump presidency - Kevin Rudd is working overtime to build bridges with Trump Republicans who would be involved in a second Donald Trump presidency, despite his previous strident criticism of the former US president. Mr Rudd had in the past variously described Mr Trump over the years as “nuts”, a traitor to the West, a threat to democracy, and as someone who pursues protectionism that retards global economic growth.

>>20306037 ‘Not a day to celebrate’: thousands protest ‘Invasion Day’ - Parliament House has been placed into lockdown after Invasion Day protesters swarmed the front of the building to protest Australia Day and Israel’s war in Gaza. A group of Indigenous rights protesters amassed on the lawn outside Parliament brandishing the Aboriginal flag, amid chants of “always was, always will be.” Others waved Palestinian flags and beat drums. One woman yelled “F-ck Israel, f-ck Australia”, in response to parliamentary security shutting the doors.

>>20306092 Invasion Day rally rife with anti-Australia sentiment - Invasion Day protesters have desecrated Australian flags and unfurled a banner imploring people to “kill the Australian in your head” on the country’s national holiday in Melbourne. About 35,000 protesters gathered outside state parliament on January 26, a day the rally’s organisers describe as an “annual reminder of invasion, occupation and genocide”.

>>20306133 Deaths in custody, statues, Gaza: Melbourne brims with tension through another January 26 - Boon Wurrung elder Jason Briggs has condemned the vandalism of a statue of Captain James Cook, which was torn down in darkness on Australia Day eve, while thousands cheered the act on at a rally in Melbourne’s CBD on Friday.

>>20306185 Video: North Sydney: Balaclava-clad, chanting neo-Nazis held on Sydney train by police - Clad in balaclavas and black military-style uniforms, about 70 members of a neo-Nazi group boarded a train full of families in an attempt to stage their own pro-White Australia Day rally in Sydney yesterday. In dramatic scenes, the group from the National Socialist Network were intercepted by police at North Sydney Station before becoming involved in a tense stand-off in a nearby park with heavily armed officers from the Public Order and Riot Squad. The group were banned from taking part in Australia Day events before being escorted up the Pacific Hwy under the watch of the police helicopter and a large procession of police cars.

>>20306205 Former Labor Premier Lara Giddings says more to fear from Trump than minority government - “People ask me about minority government, having been part of one, and I tell them I fear the rise of Donald Trump a second time in America more than I fear minority government for Tasmania in the future,” the Labor trailblazer said. Ms Giddings’ comments were backed by UTAS political analyst Professor Richard Herr. “Trump was so bereft of ideas in 2020 that the party couldn’t agree on a platform to take to the election,” Professor Herr said. “He has not improved since then and has no ideas and is just concerned about vengeance and revenge.”

>>20311664 Anthony Albanese says neo-Nazi activity has no place in Australia - Anthony Albanese has condemned the group of more than 60 men who attempted to stage an Australia Day protest as “white Australians”, and says neo-Nazi activity has no place in Australia.

>>20316821 Kevin Rudd back-pedals on Donald Trump attacks as he braces for his political comeback - Prior to taking up the top diplomatic post last March, Dr Rudd had blasted Mr Trump as “nuts”, “the most destructive president in history” and a “traitor to the West”.

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80104e No.20545632

#34 - Part 15

Australian Politics and Society - Part 8

>>20316869 Kevin Rudd's embarrassing Trump U-turn as Albo's US Ambassador is made to eat his own words - with President's shock re-election victory now looming - He's branded Donald Trump 'nuts' and labelled him the 'most destructive president in history'. But former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, now Australia's US ambassador, is desperately trying to build bridges with Trump's team ahead of the ex-President's possible re-election in November.

>>20322542 Video: PM Anthony Albanese booed at the Australian Open men’s final - During the closing ceremony, as presenter Todd Woodbridge welcomed the Prime Minister on behalf of Tennis Australia, the atmosphere took an uncomfortable shift. The 15,000-strong audience erupted in vociferous boos, drowning out Woodbridge’s speech and persisting through the introductions of other VIP attendees.

>>20322581 Anthony Albanese’s security pact with Tuvalu ‘at risk’ - Anthony Albanese’s much-vaunted “Falepili Union” security pact with Tuvalu is on shaky ground following the fall of the country’s prime minister, Kausea Natano, who lost his seat in the country’s general election over the weekend.

>>20322618 Army Taipan helicopters stripped, but Ukraine undeterred - Pictures have emerged online of the dismantled remains of some of the Australian Army’s MRH-90 Taipan helicopters, in a further blow to Ukraine which had hoped to take the aircraft.

>>20328447 Accused Fijian torturer Colonel Penioni (Ben) Naliva to command ADF troops - A senior Fijian military officer allegedly responsible for human rights abuses and torture has been appointed as deputy commander of the Australian Army’s 7th Brigade, amid claims the Australian government has turned a blind eye in its bid to counter Chinese influence in the Pacific.

>>20334181 Crisis talks over torture accused soldier Colonel Penioni (Ben) Naliva - The Albanese government is in crisis talks with the Fijian government on the future of a senior ­Fijian military officer allegedly responsible for human rights abuses and torture who has been appointed as deputy commander of the Australian Army’s 7th Brigade.

>>20339499 Video: Former Fijian MP Sam Speight reveals torture by 7th Brigade Colonel Ben Naliva - Sam Speight has lived in exile from his country for more than a decade, having been forced to flee his beloved Fiji after being beaten and tortured, he claims, by the man the Albanese government has chosen to be deputy commander of 3500 Australian troops.

>>20339527 Ex-NSW premier’s son Daniel Keneally guilty of fabricating evidence - The son of former NSW premier Kristina Keneally has broken down as he avoided prison after he was last year found guilty of fabricating a statement that wrongfully landed a man behind bars.

>>20339566 Players’ passports, contracts exposed in Football Australia data leak - Australian soccer players have had their passports, contracts and other personal information leaked online in a cybersecurity incident that has potentially also affected every local customer or fan, researchers say. Football Australia leaked secret keys online, giving public access to more than 100 buckets of data including players’ personal documents and contracts, according to Cybernews, an independent cybersecurity research publication. The researchers said the leak, which was likely due to human error and not a cyberattack, included players’ passport details along with customers’ ticket purchase information, and internal infrastructure details.

>>20339611 Video: ‘You win, you run this city’: Death threats force FriendlyJordies to remove video - Ongoing death threats have led to political commentator and YouTube satirist Jordan Shanks, known online as FriendlyJordies, taking down a YouTube video. “You win. We’re taking down the video,” said Shanks in a statement posted on his website. “Congratulations. You run this city.”

>>20344843 White supremacist Jacob Hersant to involve nation’s top lawmakers in Nazi salute case - A white supremacist who was first to be charged with performing a Nazi salute in Victoria plans to drag the nation’s top lawmakers into his legal case. The Melbourne Magistrates’ Court on Friday heard neo-Nazi Jacob Hersant, 24, required an adjournment of his matter due to a related “constitutional argument”.

>>20344860 Australian crime fighters to get better access to social media accounts - Australian law enforcement agencies tackling terrorism, child sex abuse and other transnational crimes will get sweeping access to electronic data held in the US by the likes of Microsoft and Meta under a landmark deal between the Albanese government and the Biden administration.

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80104e No.20545634

#34 - Part 16

Australian Politics and Society - Part 9

>>20365452 How Donald Trump’s election victory in November could shatter Australia-US relations - "Australian ministers, public servants and diplomats are quietly assessing the implications of a Donald Trump presidential election victory in November. Trump’s single presidential term was a disaster for the US but also for traditional alliance partners and the standing of the great republic around the world. Trump did not and does not have a coherent foreign policy, was irrational and unpredictable, prone to snap judgments and policy reversals. Even though I regard a Trump victory over Biden as unlikely, it cannot be ruled out. It makes sense for Australian government officials to prepare for this worst-case scenario." - Troy Bramston - theaustralian.com.au

>>20371195 Productivity Commission pushes for state Indigenous powers and Aboriginal watchdog - Governments across the country should relinquish powers on Aboriginal affairs policy to Indigenous communities and legislate watchdogs with more authority than the defeated voice would have had, to save failing efforts to close the gap, the Productivity Commission has declared.

>>20371298 While drama continues to develop at home, PNG prime minister touches down in Australia for historic speech - Papua New Guinea's Prime Minister James Marape has arrived in Canberra ahead of a historic address at Parliament House, but a political storm is continuing to brew at home in Port Moresby.

>>20371346 ABC cancels controversial drag queen story hour for kids after ‘hateful response’ - The ABC has backflipped on a controversial decision to organise a Drag Queen Story event for children as young as three in a Sydney suburban library after questions were raised about its “appropriateness” and “gender indoctrination”. The national broadcaster had made the call-out on social media for children aged from three to five years to attend a four-hour event at Rockdale Library, in Sydney’s south, on February 22 as part of Mardi Gras. However the ABC said it had a “hateful and offensive response” to its plans and it was “considering how we can safely host it”.

>>20371367 'Dead wrong so many times': Former Donald Trump advisor Steve Bannon hits out at Kevin Rudd over position on China - A former advisor to Donald Trump has taken aim at Australia's Ambassador to the United States Kevin Rudd over his position on China during an exclusive interview with Sky News. Steve Bannon served as a chief White House strategist under the Trump administration after the former US president's election win in 2016. Speaking to Sky News host Sharri Markson on Wednesday, Mr Bannon warned Mr Rudd's attempts to stabilise the strained Australia-China relations were dangerous. "Ambassador Rudd should know we got his number," Mr Bannon told Markson. "For people in the United States, folks in Australia should know, Rudd puts himself out as the expert in the world on China and the Chinese Communist Party. "I think he's been dead wrong so many times."

>>20377050 Video: Albanese government set for ‘tense relationship’ with future Trump administration - Sky News host Sharri Markson warns the Albanese Government is set for a tense relationship with Donald Trump's administration should he return to the White House. Former strategist Steve Bannon revealed Australia's Ambassador to the US Kevin Rudd has been trying to “worm his way” into the Trump inner circle. "Ambassador Rudd should know we got his number," Mr Bannon told Ms Markson. Mr Bannon served as a chief White House strategist under the Trump administration after the former US president's election win in 2016. “Bannon's comments indicate that the Albanese government has cause for concern should Trump win the election later this year,” Ms Markson said. - Sky News Australia

>>20377059 Kevin Rudd attempting to 'worm his way back' into hardline Republicans' 'good graces' - Australia’s Ambassador to the US Kevin Rudd has been warned his attempts to “worm his way back into the good graces” of hardline Republicans will be “quite difficult,” according to former White House Trump advisor Steve Bannon. - Mr Bannon explained the former Australian prime minister had been very critical of Donald Trump while the former president was in office but had constantly had a different attitude towards the Chinese Communist Party. “I think Rudd’s attitude about the Chinese Communist Party, at least, is so different than the hardliners,” he said. “What we fought for in World War II together as allies is still on the table today and I would hope Ambassador Rudd took it as seriously as the hardline anti-CCP element in the United States." - Sky News Australia

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80104e No.20545636

#34 - Part 17

Australian Politics and Society - Part 10

>>20377086 Video: Papua New Guinea Prime Minister James Marape urges Australia to not 'give up' on his country in historic parliament address - The Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea James Marape has urged Australia to not "give up" on his country during an historic address to the federal parliament. On Thursday morning, Mr Marape became the first Pacific leader to address the joint sitting of both houses, with MPs and Senators packing into the lower house to listen. The prime minister dwelt heavily on the shared history between Australia and Papua New Guinea, paying tribute to prime minister Gough Whitlam who helped shepherd his country to independence almost 50 years ago. "It was from this parliament that many decisions were made that have helped and shaped what Papua New Guinea was before 1975, and what Papua New Guinea is after 1975," Mr Marape said. "This is why Papua New Guinea has a very special and very unique relationship with Australia. We are the only country Australia has birthed."

>>20383187 ‘Ball in Australia’s court’: Fiji lobs torture issue back at ADF - Fiji’s top military chief has reportedly told Australian Defence Force chief Angus Campbell that “the ball is in Australia’s court” to decide whether a Fijian colonel keeps his job as deputy commander of the Australian 7th Brigade, following allegations that he was involved in torture and human rights abuses.

>>20383200 Killer drone ‘in service this year’: Conroy - The Albanese government will introduce an armed drone into service this year, Defence Industry Minister Pat Conroy has revealed. Mr Conroy disclosed the existence of the secret drone program as he announced $400m more for the air force’s developmental Ghost Bat unmanned aircraft.

>>20387063 Victorian Labor: We're taking on Advance Australia - Victorian Labor Party telling lies and using tried and proven tactic of accusing the other side of what they are in fact doing.

>>20389048 Let local Indigenous voices be heard, Marcia Langton tells Anthony Albanese - Marcia Langton wants the Albanese government to continue to support various forms of Indigenous voices across Australia, including legislated voices, as a way of fixing the failing Closing the Gap agreement.

>>20389124 Video: ‘Yes but I hate you!’ Trump and Turnbull’s explosive phone call - Malcolm Turnbull describes his infamous call with Donald Trump over Australia's refugee swap deal as 'tough'. This is not the only revealing moment during the shooting of Nemesis, the ABC's landmark political docuseries charting nine years of Coalition government from 2013 to 2022. - ABC News In-depth

>>20389124 Q Post #479 - How much did AUS donate to CF? How much did SA donate to CF? Compare. Why is this relevant? What phone call between POTUS and X/AUS leaked? List the leadership in AUS. IDEN leadership during Hussein term. IDEN leadership during POTUS' term. Who controls AUS? Who really controls AUS? UK? Why is this relevant? Q

>>20389124 Q Post #908 - Which conversation leaked? POTUS & AUS? Why that specific conversation? Signal? We (they) hear what you are saying? Threat to AUS? Why? What do they know? Trapped? Forced? Blood. Q

>>20389124 Q Post #910 - Do not focus on the call details. We knew it would leak. We knew certain areas of the WH were bugged. We knew certain people would leak. Focus - why AUS? Q

>>20394585 Republicans ‘shameful’ for blocking Ukraine aid, says Australia’s Tony Abbott - U.S. Republicans are “shameful” for blocking fresh military aid to Ukraine and holding the country “hostage to some other political objective,” according to staunchly conservative former Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott.

>>20394679 Kwinana Beach factory fire - The second Agricultural Chemical supplier plant I'm aware of in Western Australia has gone up in flames. The war on the food supply chain in Australia continues.

>>20400646 Tony Abbott warns ‘war drums are beating‘ - Tony Abbott says the “war drums are beating again” as dictators in Moscow, Beijing and Tehran exploit fissures in the democratic world made by an unlikely coalition of Donald Trump-supporting US Republicans and far left social activists.

>>20400665 Why the future rests on our moral and martial fortitude - "The immediate need is to re-arm Ukraine, stand by Israel, position more ships and planes into East Asia, urgently excise China from critical supply chains, swiftly rebuild our defence industrial infrastructure, be ready to mobilise armed forces that adversaries would shrink to take on, and better befriend India which should one day be America’s equal as a bastion of democracy." - Tony Abbott, former prime minister of Australia - theaustralian.com.au

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80104e No.20545639

#34 - Part 18

Australian Politics and Society - Part 11

>>20400702 WA Liberal senator and former defence minister Linda Reynolds to quit politics - Former defence minister and WA Liberal senator Linda Reynolds has announced she'll stand down from politics at the next election. In a statement posted to Facebook, Ms Reynolds said she would not seek Liberal Party pre-selection for another term beyond June 2025.

>>20400714 Defence in Boxer war with Marles as budget fight escalates - The army’s $5.7bn Boxer armoured vehicle program has become the latest bargaining chip in ­Defence’s escalating war with Richard Marles, with the department warning the government’s demands for savings are threatening the long-awaited capability.

>>20400740 UK activist Kellie-Jay Keen accuses ABC, Pesutto of defamation over Moira Deeming matter - UK women’s rights activist Kellie-Jay Keen has issued defamation concerns notices against both the ABC and Victorian opposition leader John Pesutto, as she prepares to lodge a case in the Federal Court, which could run concurrently with expelled Liberal Moira Deeming’s.

>>20405583 Labor under fire for failing to seek orders to lock up freed foreign murderers and rapists - Anthony Albanese has been accused of putting the public at risk amid revelations his government is yet to seek orders to lock up any of the dozens of ­foreign murderers, rapists or ­violent thugs freed into the community following a High Court ruling last year. It was revealed on Monday that seven murderers and 37 sex offenders, including pedophiles, were among the 149 immigration detainees who were released. Twenty-four of those freed have since reoffended, while 36 have been exempted from wearing ankle bracelets. The government’s failure to use its legislation to secure preventive detention orders for any of the released criminals comes despite the formation of a taskforce of 20 home affairs lawyers more than two months ago to prepare the applications.

>>20405592 Video: Murderers among detainees released after the High Court ruled their detention was unlawful - 7 murderers and 37 sex offenders were among detainees released after the High Court ruled their detention was unlawful. Tonight the Albanese government is accused of putting the public at risk by failing to get high-risk offenders off our streets. - 7NEWS Australia

>>20405608 Revealed: state by state breakdown of dangerous detainees - A breakdown of the 149 immigration detainees released under the Albanese government’s botched response to a High Court ruling last year has revealed that 60 live in NSW and 40 in Victoria, while a further 20 have been released in WA and 20 in Queensland. The Australian has obtained documents, ordered to be released by the Department of Home Affairs to the Senate on Monday night, containing the figures revealing how many and in which states the former detainees are now living in the community. The documents suggested there were less than five in the ACT and less than 10 in South Australia. There were none in Tasmania.

>>20405625 Video: ABC Indigenous Affairs editor Bridget Brennan is under investigation after controversial comments on Australia Day - The ABC ombudsman is investigating controversial comments made by Indigenous Affairs editor Bridget Brennan in an Australia Day news report where she declared to viewers the country “always was and always will be Aboriginal land.”

>>20405666 ASIO concerned about 'spontaneous violence' at home, not Hamas, says spy chief - The ongoing war in the Middle East and allegations an Australian was fighting for a designated terrorist organisation have not heightened the risk of terrorism at home. The national terrorism threat remained probable, with intelligence agency ASIO concerned about spontaneous violence, ASIO head Mike Burgess said.

>>20405672 Government apologises to ASIO director-general for ‘pressure release’ briefing disclosure - The federal government has apologised to ASIO director-general Mike Burgess after a confidential briefing to a Labor MP where he purportedly described pro-Palestine rallies as a “pressure release” on domestic terror was relayed to a voter. Speaking during a budget estimates hearing on Monday night, the director-general said any and all briefings were confidential, and should not have been disclosed by the member. In December, The Australian revealed how Higgins Labor MP Michelle Ananda-Rajah wrote to a Jewish constituent who had raised concerns about the location of Melbourne’s weekly pro-Palestine rallies. “On the matter of protests, the DG of ASIO, Mike Burgess, ­advised me that these (pro-Palestine rallies) serve as a pressure release, which is valuable given the real risk of a domestic terror attack,” the MP wrote to the voter.

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80104e No.20545640

#34 - Part 19

Australian Politics and Society - Part 12

>>20411034 Anthony Albanese handballs Indigenous treaty pledge to states - Anthony Albanese has passed the political minefield of treaty onto the states as he reframes his Indigenous affairs agenda following the failure of the voice, revealing Labor will “take the time needed” to establish a truth-telling body and put its ­immediate focus on practical issues such as jobs, education, housing and justice.

>>20411041 Indigenous Affairs Minister Linda Burney flags path for truth telling in school curriculum - Indigenous Australians Minister Linda Burney says she was in active discussions with cabinet to develop a model for a truth telling process, flagging that it could be included in the school curriculum though she remained “very open” on the framework.

>>20411053 ADF Chief Angus Campbell ‘responsible’ for giving accused Fijian torturer Penioni Naliva senior Army command job - The Chief of the Defence Force Angus Campbell says he is ultimately responsible for the appointment of Fijian Colonel and alleged torturer Penioni (Ben) Naliva as deputy commander of the Australian Army’s 7th Brigade. General Campbell told Senate estimates this morning that Colonel Naliva had not been stood aside, and was “working from home at present and supporting his family in a fairly stressful circumstance”.

>>20417014 Drop Makarrata Commission to avoid further antagonism, says Ken Wyatt - Former Indigenous Australians minister Ken Wyatt has warned Labor against pursuing a Makarrata Commission to oversee truth telling because this would further “antagonise” Australians and stoke division, following the failure of the voice referendum.

>>20422699 Video: Australian Border Force investigating boat arrival at Beagle Bay, north of Broome - Australian Border Force officers are interviewing a group of more than 20 men who say they travelled by boat from Indonesia, at a small remote Indigenous community in Western Australia's north. The men, believed to be from Pakistan and Bangladesh, were in the main street of Beagle Bay, 100 kilometres north of Broome, having been found this morning. ABC reporter Erin Parke, who was at the scene, said the group appeared in good health and were wearing t-shirts and trousers, having apparently been given water at the local store. She said ABF officials arrived in the community shortly after midday to question the men.

>>20428545 Second group of asylum seekers found on property near Beagle Bay in northern Western Australia - A second group of asylum seekers has turned up at a remote outstation north of the Aboriginal community of Beagle Bay where a group of about 30 men was taken into custody by border force authorities on Friday, prompting concerns that more than one asylum boat has landed in the area in recent days and that some arrivals may still be missing or lost.

>>20428556 WA boat arrivals reignite political contest over border protection - A group of about 30 asylum-seekers from Pakistan and Bangladesh who arrived by boat from Indonesia and wandered through crocodile-inhabited mangroves before being discovered near a remote Indigenous community have reignited the political contest over Australia’s border-protection regime. The group, the second to have reached the Australian mainland since November, was discovered at 10am (AWST) in 32C heat seeking shade in the bushes by a road outside the small town of Beagle Bay, a former church mission with a population of 348. By noon on Friday, three Australian Border Force officials had arrived from Broome, 128km south of the settlement, and were “processing” the arrivals, with Peter Dutton accusing the government of having “lost control of our borders”. The Opposition Leader linked the arrival to Labor’s handling of the High Court’s landmark NZYQ decision in November, declaring that the people-smugglers could “pick out a weak leader, a weak prime minister and a weak minister, and this is what they have done”. “We have warned about this for some time, releasing the 149 criminals, watering down Operation Sovereign Borders - that sends a clear message to the people smugglers,” Mr Dutton said. “I think clearly the government has not taken border protection seriously.”

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80104e No.20545641

#34 - Part 20

Australian Politics and Society - Part 13

>>20428562 Dutton defies Border Force rebuke as more asylum seekers discovered - More than 40 asylum seekers have now been found in a remote part of Western Australia after a second group was discovered at an Indigenous campsite, adding to a political headache over border security for Prime Minister Anthony Albanese. Before the revelation of the latest group on Saturday, Opposition Leader Peter Dutton defied a veiled rebuke by the head of Operation Sovereign Borders and doubled down on his assertion that the Albanese government had dismantled the country’s signature border protection policy. “There’s just no question about the fact that Operation Sovereign Borders is not supported by the Albanese government,” Dutton said. “I ran Operation Sovereign Borders. I know exactly how these people smugglers work. They will react to a weak prime minister and to a weak minister. If they see vulnerabilities, they will exploit them, and that’s exactly what has happened here.”

>>20434107 Suspected asylum seekers taken to Nauru as political storm over boat arrivals intensifies - Prime Minster Anthony Albanese has accused the opposition of being a "cheer squad" for people smugglers after Peter Dutton said the arrival of 39 asylum seekers in northern WA on Friday showed the government was weak on border protection.

>>20434122 Senator distances himself from neo-Nazi’s social media post - Victorian senator Ralph Babet has distanced himself from a neo-Nazi who published a photo appearing to give the Nazi salute while posing with the politician. Nathan Bull, a member of the National Socialist Network (NSN), posted a photo of him with Babet on Saturday night on social media site X with the caption “Heil Ralph Babet, Heil our people”, followed by two keyboard characters that look like a stick figure image of a person giving the gesture. The salute is outlawed in Victoria.

>>20439287 A new fleet of warships will be the government’s response to a rising China - A new fleet of small, well-armed warships will form the centrepiece of a sweeping restructure of the navy as the Albanese government seeks to rebut claims that it has been too slow to respond to the threat posed by China. The long-awaited review of the navy’s surface fleet, to be released on Tuesday, will also retain the troubled $45bn Hunter-class frigate program in Adelaide, but with only six of the anti-submarine ships likely to be ordered rather than the initially planned nine.

>>20439353 Fears of asylum seeker influx as people-smugglers adapt - Australian Border Force fears people-smugglers are investing in faster and more modern boats than ever before, after learning two groups of asylum-seekers found on the far north coast of Western Australia last week had been ordered to wait in the bush for days while the smugglers sailed out of Australian waters.

>>20444914 Video: Tiny menaces, helpless police and no solution - It’s 8pm in Alice Springs and a group of children are about to steal a car and lead police on a dangerous chase. After being caught they are immediately returned to a ‘responsible adult’, only to continue to reoffend.

>>20444970 Navy warship fleet to increase in $11.1bn funding boost - A sweeping review of the Royal Australian Navy will see a sharp increase in the number of warships, giving the navy greater firepower and strategic options in the face of a massive Chinese military build-up. The shake-up will see the number of the navy’s major surface combatants eventually rise from 11 to 20 in addition to 6 new “optionally crewed surface vessels” armed with missiles to support the main fleet. The centrepiece of the new plan is the acquisition of a new fleet of 11 general purpose frigates, to be built both overseas and locally, to replace the ageing ANZAC frigates. The government said the new frigate fleet would be fast-tracked ‘to address the risk presented by an ageing and increasingly fragile surface combatant fleet.’

>>20461459 Yes campaign crash: Mick Gooda’s anger at Anthony Albanese’s voice strategy, and aftermath - Indigenous leader Mick Gooda says Anthony Albanese and prominent Yes campaigners are responsible for the failure of the voice referendum, hitting out at their refusal to amend the proposal after it failed to win bipartisan support and began tanking in the polls. The former human rights commissioner will use a speech on Friday to attack the “crash or crash through” approach taken by the Prime Minister and his party on the advice of campaigners such as Noel Pearson, declaring he was “angry with the Yes side” over the outcome.

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80104e No.20545645

#34 - Part 21

Australian Politics and Society - Part 14

>>20461480 Austal ready to embrace drone ships following navy windfall - One of the biggest winners from the federal government’s new navy plans will launch an autonomous vessel for Defence within months, as it looks to demonstrate that technology that will now be at the core of the nation’s navy in the years ahead. ASX-listed shipbuilder Austal is deep in the process of converting an old Armidale-class patrol boat into an “optionally manned” vessel through the fitting of autonomous and remotely operated systems. Austal chief executive Paddy Gregg told The Australian that the vessel, which has had its name changed from HMAS Maitland to HMAS Sentinel, would be ready for sea trials later this year.

>>20461544 Advance is ramping up its attack ads ahead of a by-election that could completely alter the political dynamic - Labor is up against a new model of conservative campaign that it hasn’t encountered before. Dunkley has become the testing ground, and the consequences are far reaching for both sides. The involvement of conservative campaign outfit Advance in the March 2 by-election has the potential to not only change the local outcome but also the dynamics for the next federal election. Advance claims a war chest of $250,000. Any third party that contributes six figures to a local campaign has the potential to have a significant impact.

>>20467054 Mick Gooda’s speech a decisive step away from ‘we was robbed’ rhetoric - "Mick Gooda's speech to the National Aboriginal Press Club is a turning point in discussion about the failed referendum for an Indigenous voice. For the first time, a senior Indigenous leader has conceded that the referendum campaign was fundamentally flawed. He is uncompromising in his basic verdict. He writes that he is positively angry with people on the Yes side. In his view, the referendum failed because it adopted an irresponsible “crash through or crash approach”. Doubtless, Gooda will again be called a “bedwetter” simply for calling it as he sees it. His cataloguing of the referendum disaster is entirely persuasive. The voice failed because its supporters rejected bipartisanship, refused to provide detail and could not accept that this referendum, like any other, would be a big ask. What makes Gooda’s analysis unique is that he refuses to blame defeat on a carefully produced bogeyman. Other Indigenous leaders, such as Langton and Megan Davis, attempt to blame Peter Dutton for his “rejection” of bipartisanship." - Emeritus professor Greg Craven, constitutional lawyer and former vice-chancellor of the Australian Catholic University

>>20473138 OPINION: As Morrison leaves parliament, we should honour his legacy - "This week, Scott Morrison will take his seat in the House of Representatives for the last time. There has been so much criticism of his prime ministership, recently revisited on the ABC’s Nemesis, that his achievements have been obscured in the avalanche of negatives." - George Brandis, former high commissioner to the UK and federal attorney-general - smh.com.au

>>20473270 Coalition takes primary vote lead from Labor for first time since election - Voters have lifted the Coalition to its strongest position since the last federal election by boosting its primary vote from 34 to 37 per cent despite backing Labor on its overhaul of personal income tax cuts for millions of workers. The shift has weakened Labor’s core support from 35 per cent in December to 34 per cent and given the Coalition its first lead on the primary vote in the Resolve Political Monitor in this term of parliament.

>>20474666, >>20478317, >>20482875, >>20488806, >>20494037, >>20509879, >>20515626, >>20525763, >>20529684 Videos: Q in MR ROBOT?

>>20482484 Video: Malcolm Turnbull says Donald Trump's 'creepy' embrace of Vladimir Putin a threat to Australian security - Donald Trump is a "terrifying" threat to democratic order thanks to his "creepy" embrace of autocrats such as Vladimir Putin, according to former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull. In a stark warning about the prospect of Mr Trump returning to the White House, Mr Turnbull told the ABC's Q+A that Mr Trump and parts of the Republican Party were "sympathetic" to the Russian president and "no longer committed to democracy as we understand it".

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80104e No.20545646

#34 - Part 22

Australian Politics and Society - Part 15

>>20482515 Video: ABC's Q + A: Malcolm Turnbull reveals what he really thinks of Donald Trump - Malcolm Turnbull has labelled Donald Trump a 'tyrant', had a cheeky dig at Scott Morrison and questioned whether Israel's war in Gaza is actually what Hamas wants during his latest appearance on the ABC's Q+A. Mr Turnbull fears that a Trump victory in November will threaten to turn US into an autocracy without the rule of law. 'Donald Trump does not believe the law applies to him,' Mr Turnbull told the audience. 'Donald Trump lost the 2020 election and refused to accept it and … encouraged a mob to try to overthrow the constitutional process in the Congress, tried to overthrow his own constitution.' When it was pointed out that Mr Trump was outpolling current President Joe Biden, Mr Turnbull replied: 'Tyrants are often popular.'

>>20488534 Controversial Israeli weapons company awarded $917 million Australian army contract - An Israeli company whose technology was stripped from Australian Army equipment over possible data security concerns three years ago has been awarded a fresh defence contract worth $917 million. Elbit Systems has confirmed it will provide "advanced protection, fighting capabilities and sensors" for new Korean-designed Infantry Fighting Vehicles (IFVs) being constructed in the Victorian electorate of Defence Minister Richard Marles.

>>20488543 New Tuvalu govt reaffirms relationship with Taiwan - Tuvalu's new government has reaffirmed its relations with Taiwan after the election, Tuvalu's government says, adding it wants dialogue over a new security pact with Australia. "The new government wishes to reaffirm its commitment to the long-term and lasting special relationship between Tuvalu and the Republic of China, Taiwan," the statement said. "It intends to reassess options that would strengthen and lift it to a more durable, lasting, and mutually beneficial relationship."

>>20488547 Tuvalu's new prime minister indicates he will revisit deal that gives Australia control of island nation's security agreements - Tuvalu's new government has dealt a blow to Australia's signature foreign policy initiative in the Pacific, signalling it will seek revisions to the landmark Falepili Union in order to protect its sovereignty. Australian officials were relieved when former regional diplomat Feleti Teo, who was on a panel that helped craft the agreement, won the contest to become prime minister earlier this week. But, in a sign of the political sensitivities which still surround the pact, Mr Teo's new government has today acknowledged that Tuvalu's citizens were not sufficiently consulted on the agreement.

>>20493657 ‘Video: Your cover is blown’: ASIO boss reveals politician betrayed Australia to foreign spies - ASIO boss Mike Burgess has blown the cover of a sophisticated foreign interference operation that involved a former politician betraying Australia and attempting to bring a prime minister’s relative into the orbit of foreign spies. In his latest annual threat assessment, the nation’s spy chief goes into remarkable detail about the so-called “A-team”: a dedicated unit within a foreign intelligence service that made Australia its primary target and operated for several years until at least last year. “The team is aggressive and experienced, its tradecraft is good - but not good enough,” Burgess said in a speech delivered in Canberra on Wednesday night. “ASIO and our partners have been able to map out its activities and identify its members.”

>>20493671 Video: ASIO boss Mike Burgess won’t bow to pressure to reveal which former politician ‘sold out Australia’ - The nation’s top spy has called for calm, refusing to name names after dropping a bombshell that a former politician sold out Australia to foreign spies. Mike Burgess used his annual threat assessment address on Wednesday night to reveal an ex-politician was recruited by a foreign intelligence service “several years ago” but declined to name them. Former federal treasurer and ambassador to the US Joe Hockey said the claims had implicated hundreds of officials, and said Mr Burgess had a duty to every politician to reveal who it was. “You can’t make an allegation or a statement about someone being a traitor and then expect that no one will ask questions,” Mr Hockey said.

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80104e No.20545648

#34 - Part 23

Australian Politics and Society - Part 16

>>20493681 Former prime minister’s son Alex Turnbull reveals contact with Chinese agents - Former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s son Alex has revealed he was the target of suspected Chinese agents over an infrastructure project, revealing he immediately rejected the approach and reported it to spy agencies. Mr Turnbull has told news.com.au that while he did not definitively know if he was the family member ASIO chief Mike Burgess was referring to in his speech, his experience fits the sting outlined by the spy agency boss. Describing the approach as “brazen”, the activist and investor said he was contacted around 2017 when his father was Prime Minister, and he was offered equity in a company. “It was just so brazen,” Mr Turnbull told news.com.au. “My reaction was to express no interest and forward the details immediately to the authorities.”

>>20493684 Video: Joe Hockey calls for ASIO boss to name ‘traitor’ who betrayed Australia - Former treasurer Joe Hockey has called on ASIO’s Director General Mike Burgess to name the “traitor” ex-politician who betrayed Australia by working with an international spy network. Australia’s spy chief delivered the agency’s annual threat assessment on Wednesday night, including the shock details about the actions of an ex-politician. Mr Burgess did not name the country involved in recruiting the representative but said he had decided to declassify the news as a way of warning their operatives their cover was blown. “Of course he should say immediately who it is, not simply come out of the shadows, say this was a politician, then go back to the shadows and leave everyone else wondering who the hell it was,” Mr Hockey told Sky News Australia.

>>20493700 ‘It’s not me’: Ernest Wong speaks out after spy agency claims - Former NSW Labor MP Ernest Wong, who was found by ICAC to have engaged in corrupt conduct over Chinese donations, has flatly denied he is the MP at the centre of bombshell ASIO claims regarding a sting targeting a former prime minister’s family. ASIO boss Mike Burgess revealed on Wednesday night that a mystery former Australian politician had “sold out their country, party and former colleagues” after being recruited by spies for a foreign regime”. Revealing he’s never been contacted by ASIO about the claim, Ernest Kwok Chung Wong, has told news.com.au that he knows nothing about the spy agency allegation and has never met with former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s son who believes he may have been a target. “No, never,’’ Mr Wong said. “ASIO did contact me about five or six years ago, they did contact me for very general inquiries in regards to how the Chinese committee groups operated in Australia,” he said.

>>20493719 Sam Dastyari denies he is the ex-politician singled out by ASIO boss - A former Labor senator whose political career was ended by a storm over his links to a Chinese businessman has categorically denied he is the mystery figure Australia's spy boss claims 'sold out their country'. Ex-NSW senator Sam Dastyari sensationally quit politics in 2017 amid intense scrutiny over his links to Chinese real estate developer and political donor Huang Xiangmo. Mr Dastyari, who has always insisted he is a patriotic Australian, was labelled a 'Peking schmuck' by the tabloids after it was revealed he accepted money from Chinese donors. Mr Dastyari refuted speculation that has erupted on social media in the hours since. He told Daily Mail Australia the incident had 'zero to do with me', and there is no suggestion of wrongdoing. 'I'm not jumping into any commentary,' he added.

>>20498472 Victorian Labor senator Linda White dies after taking leave over health issues - Prime Minister Anthony Albanese says his heart is "broken" by the news Victorian Labor senator Linda White has died after taking leave this month to deal with health issues. Senator White had a long career behind the scenes of the Labor Party before being elected to represent Victoria at the 2022 federal election. Mr Albanese said the state's Labor branch was hurting after having lost MP Peta Murphy just months ago. "To lose two women in their prime within three months of each other is beyond belief, is so sad," he said. "On behalf of the Australian government and the Labor family, I offer my deepest condolences to Linda’s family and loved ones."

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80104e No.20545649

#34 - Part 24

Australian Politics and Society - Part 17

>>20498487 Video: Meta to pull $70 million from Australian news publishers, wind down Facebook News tab - Social media giant Meta has announced it will stop paying for Australian news content in an announcement that has sent shockwaves through the industry. The Facebook and Instagram parent company informed executives at the country’s largest news publishers in a series of phone calls on Friday morning that deals, worth around $70 million, would not be renewed after they expire later this year. The deals were originally struck under the Coalition government’s News Media Bargaining Code, which forced tech giants like Facebook and Google to pay news outlets for content shared on their platforms.

>>20498499 Video: ‘Not the Australian way’: Anthony Albanese blasts Meta - The parent company of Facebook will turn its back on millions of Australians who consume news content on the platform, after the tech giant announced it would no longer pay media outlets for the material they provide for the social media site. Meta’s decision to walk away from the payment-for-content deals, which are worth close to $250m a year for local news publishers, will ultimately short-change Australian consumers, according to senior media figures. Anthony Albanese accused Meta of unconscionable conduct over its decision, amid warnings that the move could threaten the viability of journalism in Australia.

>>20498518 ASIO warns naming 'traitor' politician could expose sources, as Peter Dutton cools on push to identify them - Opposition Leader Peter Dutton says he won't push to name the "traitor" politician exposed by Australian intelligence, saying he will respect the decision of the nation's spy chief not to name them. After setting a fire under parliament by revealing a former politician had betrayed Australia, but not naming who, spy chief Mike Burgess repeated late yesterday he would not be identifying who had "sold out" the country. "It is an historic matter that was appropriately dealt with at the time. The individual is no longer of security concern," Mr Burgess said in a statement. "In accordance with long-standing practice, ASIO will not publicly discuss individuals or provide operational details. "There are multiple reasons for this, including the need to protect our sources and capabilities. In this case, while we want the foreign intelligence service to know its cover is blown, we do not want it to unpick how we discovered its activities." Mr Burgess said it was reassuring to see increased awareness and discussion of foreign interference threats facing Australia.

>>20505029 Speaking up in Australia, risking retribution against their families in Asia - Members of Australia’s Cambodian diaspora community say they are willing to risk retribution against both themselves and their families back home to speak out against the regime in Phnom Penh during a visit to Melbourne by the country’s new prime minister. Hundreds of protesters, also including members of the Burmese, Vietnamese and Lao communities, converged on the steps of Victoria’s Parliament House ahead of the ASEAN-Australia Special Summit early next week. Leaders from Indonesia to Thailand will travel to Melbourne for the summit, which marks 50 years of relations between Australia and the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations. Among the visiting leaders will be Hun Manet, the 46-year-old son of long-time Cambodian strongman Hun Sen, who took over in a transition of power in August.

>>20505061 Video: ‘Very creepy’: Americans obsess over Turnbull’s Trump sledge - A clip of former Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull describing Donald Trump’s admiration of Vladimir Putin as “creepy” has struck a nerve in America. Mr Turnbull, who served as PM during a part of Mr Trump’s first term as US president, shared his candid observations of the world leaders on ABC’s Q+A program on Monday. “When you see Trump with Putin, as I have on a few occasions, he’s like the 12-year-old boy who goes to high school and meets the captain of the football team. My hero!” Mr Turnbull said on the program. “It is really creepy … the creepiness was palpable,” he added. The clip was picked up by US talk show The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, where Colbert joked Mr Turnbull’s comment about Trump was an “insulting comparison … to 12-year-old boys”. “If a 12-year-old boy met Putin, he wouldn’t idolise him, he would look him straight in the eye and say ‘wait, we’re the same height?’”

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80104e No.20545651

#34 - Part 25

Australian Politics and Society - Part 18

>>20505097 Video: Labor holds the seat of Dunkley with reduced margin - Labor has retained the seat of Dunkley after holding onto key cost of living booths, defying a healthy increase in the Liberal primary vote that will render the seat marginal in 2025. Labor’s primary has held up at about 40 per cent, which has mirrored the 2022 result, in what the Albanese government will view as a respectable outcome. There were green shoots for the Liberal Party in some booths in the electorate’s south but candidate Nathan Conroy was expected to fall well short of the 6.3 per cent needed to defeat Labor on the two party-preferred measure. This has handed the seat to ALP community worker Jodie Belyea, with the Labor margin falling to 52.4 per cent after just under 70 per cent of the vote had been counted. The Liberal primary vote was up 6.8 per cent, a strong result in the political market for the Liberal Party in Victoria.

>>20505113 Court orders Dan Andrews to hand over documents relating to Blairgowrie teen cyclist crash - Daniel Andrews has been ordered to hand over his personal telephone and credit card records relating to a Blairgowrie car crash involving a teenage cyclist. The former premier was personally served with a Supreme Court subpoena outside his Mulgrave home last week. The subpoena requires Mr Andrews to produce a series of documents relating to the day Ryan Meuleman, then 15, was struck by the Andrews’ family car in January 2013. It can be revealed Mr Andrews has engaged Arnold Bloch Leibler to represent him in the case, the same law firm his former government used to broker a massive taxpayer-funded compensation deal over the shock cancellation of the Commonwealth Games. ABL is also acting for the former premier’s wife, Catherine Andrews, who was driving at the time of the crash. The phone records will be relied upon as part of a damages action launched by Ryan’s lawyers to ascertain who Mr Andrews called in the aftermath of the near-fatal crash, including whether he spoke to his then chief of staff, current Victoria Police Assistant Commissioner Brett Curran.

>>20505130 Daniel Andrews ordered by court to hand over personal phone and credit card records relating to controversial 2013 crash that seriously injured teen cyclist Ryan Meuleman - Daniel Andrews has been ordered by a court to hand over his personal phone and credit cards records relating to a road crash with a teenage cyclist. They are required as part of a civil suit launched by lawyers for Ryan Meuleman, who was 15-years-old and riding his bike in Blairgowrie on the Mornington Peninsula when he was struck by the Andrews' family SUV in 2013. Of particular interest is who Mr Andrews called in the aftermath of the crash and whether that included his then chief-of-staff, Brett Curran, who is the current assistant commissioner of Victoria Police. Mr Meuleman is seeking damages from law firm Slater & Gordon, who he hired in the aftermath of the crash, for allegedly failing to conduct a 'full and proper investigation into the circumstances' of the incident. He claims he was banned from discussing the crash when he accepted an $80,000 compensation payout for his injuries in 2016 from the Traffic Accident Commission, negotiated by Slater & Gordon, who he alleges failed to act in his best interests. Mr and Mrs Andrews have said Mr Meulman 'T-boned' their car but he claims he was slowly riding the bike along a gravel track when he crossed the road and the SUV, travelling at speed, 'came out of nowhere' and struck him. Mr Andrews told police according to the official report: 'The cyclist was travelling at speed and hit our car at a perfect right angle very heavily. I want to make it clear - the cyclist hit our vehicle.'

>>20510052 Video: Traitor politician was in parliament when they 'sold out' Australia, spy agency reveals - The mystery former politician who engaged in espionage for a foreign country was a serving member of an Australian parliament when they were recruited, SBS News can reveal. For the first time, in an interview with SBS News, director-general of the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) Mike Burgess has confirmed they were recruited to work for the international spy ring while representing voters and being paid by Australian taxpayers.

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80104e No.20545652

#34 - Part 26

Australian Politics and Society - Part 19

>>20519936 China revealed as country behind spy chief’s unnamed ‘A-Team’ - China’s leading spy agency has been revealed as the organisation behind the sustained targeting of Australians detailed by the nation’s spy chief in his annual threat assessment. In an exclusive interview with this masthead and 60 Minutes, ASIO Director General Mike Burgess has separately hit back at calls for him to identify the “traitor” ex-politician who he accused of betraying the nation in last week’s threat assessment. While Burgess repeatedly refused to name any overseas intelligence agency, this masthead has independently confirmed the spy unit he described as the “A-Team” in his threat assessment speech involves a division of China’s Ministry of State Security (MSS) devoted to Australia.

>>20519961 Mike Burgess, ASIO have shown ‘utter contempt’ for stabilisation process with China: former prime minister Paul Keating - Former Labor prime minister Paul Keating says ASIO boss Mike Burgess and other members of the security community have displayed “utter contempt for the so-called stabilisation process” with China and has called for the spy boss to be dismissed. Mr Keating slammed the Albanese government’s “anti-China Australian strategic policy” and “mindless pro-American stance”. “When the Albanese government was elected, the first decision it should have taken was to dismiss Burgess, Andrew Shearer and Mike Pezzullo … unbelievably, Burgess and Shearer still remain at the centre of a Labor government’s security apparatus,” he said. “These people display utter contempt for the so-called stabilisation process that the Prime Minister had decided upon and has progressed with China and will do anything to destabilise any meaningful rapprochement.”

>>20525189 Keating slammed by Labor, Libs over Wong, ASIO attack - Labor and the Coalition have hit back at Paul Keating for giving the Albanese government a spray over China, right in the middle of the prime minister hosting the special ASEAN Summit in Melbourne. Prime Minister Anthony Albanese backed Foreign Minister Penny Wong after Mr Keating accused the government of being recklessly at odds with South-East Asian nations, including Malaysia, over China. Senator Wong, Treasurer Jim Chalmers and Deputy Liberal leader Sussan Ley took issue with the former Labor prime minister.

>>20525348 Former Victorian Opposition Leader Matthew Guy's silence on Freemasons membership raises ‘conflict’ questions - Former opposition leader and planning minister Matthew Guy did not declare his years-long Freemasons Victoria membership, at a time when the secretive order pursued significant property developments around the state. Guy’s membership of Freemasons Victoria was confirmed by grand master Anthony Bucca, leaked internal documents and five internal Freemasons sources, who spoke anonymously due to rules prohibiting members from speaking publicly. Documents obtained by The Age show Guy was registered as a Freemasons Victoria member in 2018 in the rank of “mark mason”, which is the third level of membership of the secret fraternity. Guy lost the state election that year to Labor’s Daniel Andrews. It is not known what year Guy’s membership began, but Bucca said it had ceased in recent years, without providing an exact date, and dismissed questions about potential or perceived conflicts during the politician’s membership.

>>20525355 Q Post #1630 - Why are Freemasons on the scene of most shooting locations? Openly giving interviews or in background shots? Symbolism will be their downfall. Q

>>20529711 ‘Anthony Byrne is spy MP’: Adem Somyurek - A former Andrews government minister has told state parliament he suspects ex-federal Labor MP Anthony Byrne is the politician ASIO ­revealed as betraying Australia to a foreign power. Upper House MP Adem Somyurek used parliamentary privilege on Wednesday to call on the nation’s intelligence agency to investigate the former Labor MP who was also his ex-mate. Mr Somyurek, who now sits in parliament as a Democratic Labour Party member, blames Mr Byrne for his demise four years ago as a Labor power­broker and launched a scathing attack on his integrity.

>>20541135 ‘Great port of call’: US Coast Guard endorses Cairns as key strategic destination - Drug smugglers, human traffickers and illegal fishermen will come under increased pressure from the US Coast Guard across the Pacific, with Cairns playing a crucial strategic role in operations. The USCGC Harriet Lane docked in Trinity Inlet on Thursday with crew to remain in the Far North across the weekend, before heading to Papua New Guinea early next week. The 82m vessel will work in partnership with allied nations to impose “rules-based order” in the region as part of Operation Blue Pacific patrol.

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80104e No.20545654

#34 - Part 27

Coronavirus / COVID-19 Pandemic, Australia and Worldwide

>>20147879 US must come clean on what it’s hiding about Covid origins - "It’s more than four years since Covid-19 broke out in China and almost four years since it was declared a pandemic. Yet we still don’t know how it started: lab leak or zoonosis. The primary reason we don’t know is that the Chinese Communist Party is determined to bury the truth, as it tries to do with everything that goes wrong on its territory. In just over a week’s time, on January 8-9, Anthony Fauci will appear before the House Covid subcommittee. This will be an opportunity for the congressional body to put direct questions to this man about his role in the secretive pursuit of gain-of-function research, the funding of such work in China by his and other American bodies, and the findings of the intelligence agencies. Pay attention. This is a process that does not happen in China." Paul Monk, former head of the China desk in the Defence Intelligence Organisation - theaustralian.com.au

>>20339584 Video: Adelaide father to get compensation after developing heart condition from COVID-19 vaccine - An Adelaide public servant is set to receive compensation for a heart condition he developed from a reaction to the COVID-19 vaccine. Daniel Shepherd, 44, developed pericarditis after a rare reaction to his third Pfizer COVID-19 jab, which he was required to have before beginning a job with the Department of Child Protection. Shepherd told 9News he now has the heart of a 90-year-old. In a landmark ruling in mid-January, the South Australian Employment Tribunal agreed to pay weekly compensation and medical bills to Shepherd. Doctors were unanimous in his case that the vaccine was the cause but the government argued emergency directions trumped the laws around workplace injury. Pericarditis is meant to clear within a few months but Shepherd's symptoms have plagued him for almost two years.

>>20482468 Video: Mandating COVID-19 vaccines for some Queensland frontline workers found to be unlawful, judge rules - A judge has ruled that mandating COVID-19 vaccines for some Queensland frontline workers was unlawful based on human rights grounds. Dozens of Queensland Police Service (QPS) and Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) staff challenged their workplace mandates in the Supreme Court in 2022, after they refused to comply with the directives. The two groups were testing the legality of the directions on several grounds of the Judicial Review Act (JRA) and the Human Rights Act (HRA). On Tuesday, Justice Glenn Martin found the applicants "had not established any ground under the JRA of unreasonableness". However, he did find the directives breached section 58 of the HRA, which states that all public service employees must give proper consideration to human rights before making a decision, and that they must act and make decisions that are compatible with human rights.

>>20488551 Queensland’s ‘unlawful’ Covid-19 vaccine mandate ruling just ‘tip of the iceberg’: experts - A landmark legal decision “vindicating” dozens of Queensland paramedics and police officers who took on the state government’s Covid-19 vaccine mandates is just the “tip of the iceberg” of litigation attempting to overthrow pandemic orders, experts say, with cases in similar jurisdictions likely to ride on the coat-tails of the successful action. Calls for a royal commission into vaccination mandates during the pandemic were reignited on Tuesday after the Queensland ­Supreme Court found the state’s policy was “unlawful” for the frontline workers, meaning any disciplinary actions that relied on those policies are deemed invalid. Judge Glenn Martin on Tuesday ruled Police Commissioner Katarina Carroll’s December 2021 directive for all staff to be vaccinated against Covid-19 was unlawful under the Human Rights Act. He also ruled a mandatory vaccine order for paramedics, made by former Queensland Health director-general John Wakefield in January 2022, was “of no effect”.

>>20488573 Video: Dr Nick Coatsworth admits the big vaccine mistake he made as one of the country's top doctors during the Covid pandemic - Dr Nick Coatsworth has said that government officials including himself 'got it wrong' when it came to supporting Covid vaccine mandates - and that future pandemics should prioritise convincing people to get vaccinated. Dr Coatsworth, Australia's former deputy chief health officer during the pandemic, said he had to acknowledge his own role in the system promoting vaccine mandates. 'We didn't get it wrong promoting the vaccines, but the mandates, yes, I think we did get that wrong,' he told The Today Show on Wednesday. 'And I think you can say hindsight is 20/20. But hindsight gives us foresight. And if we have another pandemic, we should think long and hard whether mandates for vaccines are justified.'

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80104e No.20545655

#34 - Part 28

Julian Assange Indictment and Extradition - Part 1

>>20103739 Julian Assange's 'final' appeal against U.S. extradition to be held in February - WikiLeaks' founder Julian Assange's possible final legal challenge to stop his extradition from Britain to the United States where he is wanted on criminal charges will be held at London's High Court in February, his supporters said on Tuesday. Assange, 52, is wanted by U.S. authorities on 18 counts, including one under a spying act, relating to WikiLeaks' release of vast troves of confidential U.S. military records and diplomatic cables which Washington said had put lives in danger. Britain has given the go-ahead for his extradition, but he has been trying to overturn that decision. Campaigners said a public hearing would take place at the High Court on Feb. 20-21 when two judges will review an earlier ruling which had refused Assange permission to appeal.

>>20103745 US officials monitored pro-Assange protests in Australia for ‘anti-US sentiment’, documents reveal - American officials monitored pro-Assange protests in Australia for “anti-US sentiment”, warned of “increasing sympathy, particularly on the left” for the WikiLeaks founder in his home country and derided local media’s “sensationalist” reporting of the explosive 2010 cable leaks, previously classified records show.

>>20109793 Assange gets ‘last chance’ US extradition appeal date - WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s possible final appeal against extradition to the United States will be held at the UK High Court of Justice in London on February 20 and 21, according to a statement released by the media organization. Assange faces 17 charges under the US Espionage Act and potentially a 175-year prison sentence. Two judges will review a ruling made in June, which had refused the journalist’s permission to make any further appeals. This “may be the final chance for Julian Assange to prevent his extradition to the United States,” WikiLeaks warned in a statement. On June 6, a UK High Court judge rejected all eight grounds for his motion, backing the 2020 extradition order.

>>20218538 Julian Assange's lawyer warns his life is 'at risk' if final UK appeal against extradition to US fails - Wikileaks founder Julian Assange is at risk of suicide if the UK High Court next month rejects his final appeal against extradition to the United States, international human rights lawyer Jennifer Robinson has warned.

>>20244569 ‘Do or die’: MPs launch urgent bid to spare Assange from US extradition - Australian politicians across the political divide have launched a last-ditch bid to prevent Julian Assange from being extradited to the United States to face espionage charges as the WikiLeaks founder faces a crucial final legal challenge in Britain next month.

>>20405682 MP makes 11th hour bid to stop Assange extradition - As part of a last-ditch attempt to stop Julian Assange's extradition, an independent MP has called on the federal government to leverage its US and UK connections and bring the WikiLeaks founder home. Assange will front the High Court in London on February 20 in what could be the final bid to prevent his extradition to the United States, after more than a decade spent evading the Americans. Tasmanian MP Andrew Wilkie has long been outspoken in his support of the imprisoned Australian and will travel to England ahead of the hearing to bear witness and support Assange's family. "I do not accept that the Australian government has done and is doing everything it humanly can to bust Julian out of Belmarsh (Prison)," he said on Tuesday.

>>20417081 Labor toughens stance on Assange, backs vote to bring him home - Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has sent a strong message about the need to release WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange from prison in the United Kingdom, voting in parliament for a motion that called for the Australian citizen’s return to the country. The vote signalled a new federal government stance by going beyond past statements from Albanese about the need to bring the matter “to a conclusion” in some way. Tasmanian independent Andrew Wilkie moved the motion in parliament and gained support from Labor backbencher Josh Wilson before a vote of 86 to 42 in favour of his call to end the prosecution and allow Assange to return to his family in Australia after years in prison.

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80104e No.20545656

#34 - Part 29

Julian Assange Indictment and Extradition - Part 2

>>20417094 Australian parliament wants WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange back home, not sent to US - Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said Thursday he hoped for an amicable end to the prosecution of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange after lawmakers ramped up pressure on the United States and Britain by passing a motion calling for the Australian citizen to be allowed to return to his home country. Albanese told Parliament the days before Britain’s High Court of Justice hears Assange’s appeal next week against extradition to the United States on espionage charges were a “critical period.” “I hope this can be resolved. I hope it can be resolved amicably. It’s not up to Australia to interfere in the legal processes of other countries, but it is appropriate for us to put our very strong view that those countries need to take into account the need for this to be concluded,” Albanese said. “Regardless of where people stand, this thing cannot just go on and on and on indefinitely,” Albanese added.

>>20417100 Video: Julian Assange 'has the support of the Australian people': Gabriel Shipton - Julian Assange's brother Gabriel Shipton says the Prime Minister's support of a motion to free Assange from a UK prison is “very significant.” Mr Shipton noted the timing of the Prime Minister’s message is particularly significant. “I think it’s very significant, particularly the timing of this message ahead of Julian’s final appeal application before the UK courts,” Mr Shipton told Sky News Australia. “It’s going to send a clear message to the UK and the US that Julian has the support of the Australian people.” - Sky News Australia

>>20422899 PM’s support for Assange wins praise from jailed Aussie’s wife - Stella Assange, wife of the imprisoned Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, has welcomed the support of Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and the federal parliament for his release and repatriation to Australia. She told reporters in London that she hoped the motion passed in parliament on Wednesday by “an extremely strategic ally of the United States” would “mean something”, as the US extradition push returns to a British court next week.

>>20445003 WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange in final legal bid to avoid extradition to the US - WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has rolled the dice in a final legal bid to avoid extradition to the US - and a potential 175 year jail term. Two days of appeal hearings in London’s High Court will begin tonight as the Australian hacker’s wife Stella Assange issued a desperate plea for his release. “He’s paid with 12 years of his life in jail for doing journalistic work that was in the public interest,” she said. “This is not about Julian, it’s about receiving information that governments would prefer was not in the public domain, even if it is in the public interest, and being criminalised for publishing it.”

>>20445010 WikiLeaks founder Assange starts final UK legal battle to avoid extradition to US on spy charges - Julian Assange's lawyers will begin their final U.K. legal challenge on Tuesday to stop the WikiLeaks founder from being sent to the United States to face spying charges. The 52-year-old has been fighting extradition for more than a decade, including seven years in self-exile in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London and the last five years in a high-security prison. Assange’s attorneys will ask two High Court judges to grant a new appeal hearing, his last legal roll of the dice in Britain. If the judges rule against Assange, he can ask the European Court of Human Rights to block his extradition - though supporters worry he could be put on a plane to the U.S. before that happens. Judges Victoria Sharp and Jeremy Johnson could deliver a verdict at the end of the two-day hearing on Wednesday, but they’re more likely to take several weeks to consider their decision.

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80104e No.20545657

#34 - Part 30

Julian Assange Indictment and Extradition - Part 3

>>20450464 Video: Julian Assange absent at last-ditch hearing against extradition to US - WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was absent from a London court due to illness Tuesday, as his lawyers launched a likely last bid to appeal against his extradition to the United States to face espionage charges. Washington indicted the Australian multiple times between 2018 and 2020 over WikiLeaks’ publication of secret military and diplomatic files on the US-led wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. On the first of two days of evidence before two High Court judges, the 52-year-old’s leading lawyer said previous rulings contained “errors of law” and that the US charges against him are “political”. “Mr Assange was exposing serious state criminality,” Edward Fitzgerald said, adding he is “being prosecuted for engaging in ordinary journalistic practice of obtaining and publishing classified information”.

>>20450481 Video: Anthony Albanese says he's working with Julian Assange's team on strategy to bring him home - Prime Minister Anthony Albanese says he has worked with Julian Assange's legal team to strategise how to free the WikiLeaks founder. Assange faces his final appeal in the UK against extradition to the US, but was described as too unwell to attend the start of the two-day hearing in London. He published a huge trove of classified US military secrets more than a decade ago and has been detained in Belmarsh, a high security prison in the UK, since 2019. Albanese said he had raised Assange's case at the highest levels with the US and UK, and had privately made his views known that the pursuit of him had been enough. "It's time Julian Assange was brought home," he told ABC Radio Sydney.

>>20455758 People 'disappeared' after Julian Assange and Wikileaks blended hacking with journalism, court hears - People living under authoritarian regimes "disappeared" after Julian Assange blended hacking with reporting, "stole vast amounts" of classified documents and published them on his WikiLeaks website, a court has heard. Mr Assange, an Australian, is fighting extradition from Britain to the United States where he has been charged with numerous offences under the Espionage Act. He's been in London's HM Prison Belmarsh since 2019, and is running out of legal avenues to avoid being sent to America, where he could face up to 175 years behind bars if convicted. On Wednesday, a hearing at the Royal Courts of Justice on The Strand was told Mr Assange had "exposed to the world the unredacted names of human sources" who had helped the US.

>>20455783 Julian Assange's father calls on government to pressure UK, US to release WikiLeaks founder - The father of jailed Australian journalist Julian Assange says the federal government should use its close relationship with the United States and the United Kingdom to secure his son's release. Mr Assange is being held in a London prison as he fights extradition to the US on 18 criminal charges related to his work with WikiLeaks. On Wednesday John Shipton spoke to his son over the phone from a London rally that was packed with supporters calling for Mr Assange's immediate release. Mr Shipton said it was time for Australia to exert pressure on the UK and the US to bring his son home.

>>20455795 Video: Assange awaits decision after two-day UK hearing ends - US prosecutors are seeking to put the 52-year-old Australian on trial over WikiLeaks' high-profile release of vast troves of confidential US military records and diplomatic cables. They argue the leaks imperilled the lives of their agents and there was no excuse for his criminality. Lawyers for the US said Assange's prosecution was "based on the rule of law and evidence". "The appellant's prosecution might be unprecedented but what he did was unprecedented," lawyer Clair Dobbin said. Assange "indiscriminately and knowingly published to the world the names of individuals who acted as sources of information to the US," Dobbin said. "It is these facts which distinguish him, not his political opinions," she added.

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80104e No.20545658

#34 - Part 31

Australian Defence Force Afghanistan Inquiry and Ben Roberts-Smith Defamation Trial - Part 1

>>20359662 No ‘nefarious’ cover up in Ben Roberts-Smith case, soldier’s lawyers say - Evidence relied upon in throwing out former SAS soldier Ben Roberts-Smith’s defamation case against Nine newspapers was at times contradicted official military documentation, the Federal Court has heard. Roberts-Smith appeared at the Federal Court on Monday morning for the first day of his appeal against a landmark defamation judgement handed down by Justice Anthony Besanko, who found that he was involved in the unlawful killings of four prisoners in Afghanistan. Roberts-Smith, who has consistently denied the allegations, is arguing Justice Besanko erred in his findings regarding the six articles in The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age and The Canberra Times, and has asked the court to set aside the judgment. Leading appellate silk Bret Walker SC on Monday argued Roberts-Smith was entitled to a presumption of innocence, and claimed Justice Besanko did not properly give regard to the gravity of the allegations when he made his findings.

>>20365364 Planting object on Afghan’s body may not point to murder cover-up, Roberts-Smith appeal told - The barrister acting for war veteran Ben Roberts-Smith in his appeal against the loss of his defamation case has told an appeal court that even a finding that Australian soldiers planted a Taliban-issued radio on an Afghan man’s body would not necessarily suggest a murder cover-up. Roberts-Smith is appealing against a damaging decision by Federal Court Justice Anthony Besanko last year, which dismissed his defamation suit against The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald and found the newspapers had proven he was complicit in the murder of four unarmed prisoners while on deployment in Afghanistan. Of the four murders found proven by Besanko, one involved an allegation the former Special Air Service corporal kicked an unarmed and handcuffed Afghan villager named Ali Jan off a small cliff in Darwan on September 11, 2012, before procuring a soldier under his command to shoot him. Under the rules of engagement that bound the SAS, killing unarmed prisoners is a war crime. Roberts-Smith’s barrister, Bret Walker, SC, told the Full Court of the Federal Court on Tuesday that there was insufficiently cogent evidence available to Besanko to make such a grave finding.

>>20371359 ‘Tell him to shoot him or I will’: Dispute over key SAS witness - There was “nowhere near” enough evidence for the judge presiding over Ben Roberts-Smith’s high-profile defamation case to find the war veteran ordered the unlawful execution of an Afghan prisoner by uttering the words “tell him to shoot him or I will”, his barrister has told an appeal court. Roberts-Smith’s 10-day appeal over his devastating defamation loss against The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald entered its third day on Wednesday as his barrister, Bret Walker, SC, told the Full Court of the Federal Court that murder findings should not have been made against his client.

>>20383213 ‘Not like a detective novel’: Court urged to reject Roberts-Smith appeal - Ben Roberts-Smith’s defamation case was “not like a detective novel” where there could be multiple explanations for killings in Afghanistan, and a decision finding he engaged in war crimes should not be overturned, the barrister acting for the media outlets at the centre of the lawsuit has said. Nicholas Owens, SC, acting for The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald, urged the Full Court of the Federal Court on Friday to reject the former soldier’s appeal against Justice Anthony Besanko’s historic decision last year dismissing his multimillion-dollar defamation suit against the newspapers. Owens told the court that Roberts-Smith’s barrister, Bret Walker, SC, had raised hypothetical scenarios during the appeal, including that Australian soldiers might be motivated to plant a Taliban-issued object on the body of an Afghan man killed legitimately in war to help avoid unnecessary questions about whether the killing was in fact lawful.

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80104e No.20545659

#34 - Part 32

Australian Defence Force Afghanistan Inquiry and Ben Roberts-Smith Defamation Trial - Part 2

>>20400727 ‘No evidence’ slain Afghan men were armed, Roberts-Smith appeal told - There was “no evidence” that two Afghan men allegedly murdered by or at the direction of Ben Roberts-Smith were armed at the time of their death, the barrister acting for the newspapers at the centre of the former elite soldier’s high-stakes defamation appeal has said. There is no dispute the two Afghan men were killed during this mission, but Roberts-Smith gave evidence during the trial that they were enemy combatants killed lawfully in action by him and a second soldier. Roberts-Smith told the court the two men were armed with a machine-gun and a rifle respectively, which were shown in a photo tendered in court. But a serving SAS soldier dubbed Person 18, who was called by the newspapers to give evidence at the trial, told the court that he found those specific guns among a weapons cache in a hay store at Whiskey 108. Besanko accepted Person 18’s account on this point and rejected Roberts-Smith’s evidence.

>>20405678 Witnesses to murder by Roberts-Smith gave strikingly similar accounts, appeal told - The evidence of three key witnesses about the murder of a prisoner with a prosthetic leg by disgraced SAS soldier Ben Roberts-Smith was strikingly coherent and contained only very minor differences, a court has heard. Nicholas Owens SC, acting for the newspapers, is urging the full court of the Federal Court not to overturn Besanko’s decision, and argued on Tuesday the court should believe the accounts of three witnesses, dubbed Persons 41, 14 and 24, in relation to two of the alleged murders.

>>20411157 Judges urged to ignore ‘attack’ on Afghans who gave evidence of Roberts-Smith murder - Afghan witnesses who gave detailed evidence about the murder of villager Ali Jan by Australian soldier Ben Roberts-Smith should be believed, despite efforts by the disgraced SAS soldier’s legal team to attack their credibility during his defamation trial, a court has been told. Nicholas Owens SC on Wednesday attacked the substance of Roberts-Smith’s appeal, urging the justices to believe the evidence given by witnesses from a remote Afghan village who were present when Roberts-Smith murdered Jan in 2012.

>>20417104 ‘Event of startling gravity’: Newspapers back SAS soldier’s account of execution - The newspapers defending Ben Roberts-Smith’s high-stakes defamation appeal have told a court an elite soldier who testified that the war veteran ordered an unlawful execution with the words “shoot him, or I will” could hardly have misremembered an event of such “startling gravity”. Nicholas Owens, acting for The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald, told the Full Court of the Federal Court in Sydney on Thursday that a serving Special Air Service soldier, dubbed Person 14, called by the newspapers to give evidence in the defamation trial, had “stuck to his guns” when accused of lying by Roberts-Smith’s team. He was “ultimately vindicated, and powerfully so”, Owens said, because key parts of his account that had been disputed by Roberts-Smith’s camp were found to be supported by objective evidence.

>>20422752 Roberts-Smith’s barrister cautions court against ‘amateur sleuthing’ - Sydney silk Bret Walker SC, the barrister acting for Ben Roberts-Smith in his high-stakes defamation appeal, has cautioned the Federal Court against “amateur sleuthing” as he urged a trio of judges to overturn a devastating decision dismissing the war veteran’s lawsuit. Walker said “the heart of our case” was that “weight is to be given to the presumption of innocence” and “exactness of proof is expected”. In this case, “you certainly don’t have that”, Walker told the three-judge bench of the evidence marshalled by The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald.

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80104e No.20545661

#34 - Part 33

Brittany Higgins Rape Allegations and Bruce Lehrmann Defamation Trial - Part 1

>>20092945 Video: Brittany Higgins's former chief of staff Fiona Brown allowed to give evidence in closed court session.

>>20098432 Lip-reader spent three days analysing CCTV footage of Lehrmann and Higgins, court told.

>>20098441 Who said conspiracy? Lisa Wilkinson’s lawyer Sue Chrysanthou SC abandons cover-up claim.

>>20103761 Former Liberal staffer Fiona Brown says Brittany Higgins ‘didn’t tell me she had been raped’.

>>20103774 Linda Reynolds to seek freeze on Brittany Higgins’ assets as her former staffer leaves for new life in France.

>>20108466 Federal Court Justice Michael Lee says parts of Higgins, Lehrmann evidence ‘simply can’t be accepted.’

>>20108473 Bienvenue: Brittany Higgins and David Sharaz have arrived in Paris to start their new life in France.

>>20114415 ‘Lies, damned lies and CCTV’: Lehrmann’s barrister Steven Whybrow SC delivers blistering closing address.

>>20119265 David Sharaz: the witness who never appeared - Where was Sharaz when Lisa Wilkinson was fighting for her professional life in court? The evidence of the man dubbed ‘puppet master’ by Bruce Lehrmann would have been relevant.

>>20147701 YouTuber who allegedly uploaded unlawful videos of the Bruce Lehrmann defamation trial has been ordered to face court over alleged contempt

>>20187793 Lehrmann lawyers call for ‘substantial damages’ even if court finds he lied about sex - Bruce Lehrmann should still receive “substantial damages” in his defamation case against Network Ten and Lisa Wilkinson even if the Federal Court finds he lied when he said he did not have sex with Brittany Higgins, his barristers have told the court.

>>20266894 Reynolds recruits French counsel as Higgins, Sharaz lawsuit escalates - WA Liberal senator Linda Reynolds has taken her defamation row with Brittany Higgins to her former staffer’s new home country, engaging a French lawyer in her pursuit of a freezing order over Higgins’ European assets.

>>20334205 Shane Drumgold claims ‘bias’ in Walter Sofronoff inquiry - Former ACT chief prosecutor Shane Drumgold will attempt to prove his allegation that Walter Sofronoff KC engaged in an “unreasonable” relationship with columnist Janet Albrechtsen and The Australian newspaper while he was conducting an inquiry into Mr Drumgold’s conduct in prosecuting Bruce Lehrmann’s rape trial.

>>20334220 Judge urges Brittany Higgins, David Sharaz, Linda Reynolds to settle defamation suit - WA Supreme Court Justice Marcus Solomon has again called on Linda Reynolds, Brittany Higgins and her fiance, David Sharaz, to do everything they can to settle their defamation dispute ahead of its upcoming mediation hearing, having previously spoken to the “human cost of this litigation”.

>>20359645 Lisa Wilkinson only had a ‘limited role’ in Brittany Higgins broadcast: court documents - Lisa Wilkinson’s “limited role” in producing the final broadcast of Brittany Higgins’ interview with The Project was simply to “read the pre-prepared script”, new Federal Court documents from the veteran television presenter’s lawyers show.

>>20365347 Shane Drumgold fails in bid to scrap ‘irrelevant’ evidence of Walter Sofronoff - Former ACT chief prosecutor Shane Drumgold has failed in a bid to strike out evidence from Walter Sofronoff KC explaining why he engaged with the media throughout an inquiry into Mr Drumgold’s conduct while prosecuting Bruce Lehrmann’s rape case, with a Supreme Court judge ruling that the evidence could go some way to clarifying how contact with the press could have been “necessary or convenient for the fair and prompt conduct of the inquiry.”

>>20405635 Ten ‘intentionally cruel’: explosive Lisa Wilkinson claims - Lisa Wilkinson has set out for the first time, in exacting detail, her claims of betrayal by Ten and her “devastation and humiliation” at being removed from The Project, in previously secret documents now released by the Federal Court.

>>20405643 Sofronoff, Drumgold showdown to kick off in court - The first day of a legal throwdown brought by former ACT director of public prosecutions Shane Drumgold SC against the inquiry that ended his career will be heard in the ACT Supreme Court on Tuesday, in a battle the disgraced prosecutor hopes will reinstate his reputation and possibly catapult him back into his old job. Mr Drumgold launched legal action against the ACT government and the inquiry, chaired by Walter Sofronoff KC, last year, challenging findings in the final report that he engaged in serious malpractice and grossly unethical conduct during the rape trial of Bruce Lehrmann.

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80104e No.20545663

#34 - Part 34

Brittany Higgins Rape Allegations and Bruce Lehrmann Defamation Trial - Part 2

>>20405648 Journalist ‘infected’ Lehrmann inquiry chair’s findings against prosecutor, court hears - Journalist for The Australian Janet Albrechtsen “infected” Walter Sofronoff KC, the chair of the inquiry into the botched prosecution of former Liberal staffer Bruce Lehrmann, with bias against former ACT top prosecutor Shane Drumgold, a court has been told. The allegations were made by Drumgold’s lawyer, Dan O’Gorman SC, in court in his bid to overturn findings against his client made in the high-profile probe into the Lehrmann trial.

>>20405655 Walter Sofronoff’s mind ‘poisoned’ against Shane Drumgold: court claim - Walter Sofronoff KC “poisoned his mind” against former ACT chief prosecutor Shane Drumgold while conducting inquiry into the handling of former Liberal staffer Bruce Lehrmann’s rape trial, a court has heard. The ACT Supreme Court on Tuesday morning heard allegations that Mr Sofronoff was influenced by frequent communication with The Australian’s columnist Janet Albrechtsen, who Mr Drumgold’s lawyers claim favoured Mr Lehrmann in her coverage of his prosecution, while writing “negative” stories about Mr Drumgold’s conduct during the case.

>>20411134 ‘I begged Ten to own up on Logies speech’, says Lisa Wilkinson - Lisa Wilkinson has recounted how she begged Network Ten to reveal she had acted on legal advice in giving her Logies speech, as Tasha Smithies, Ten’s most senior litigation counsel who gave the speech the OK, told the court she was “not embarrassed” by it.

>>20411150 ‘Albrechtsen asked more questions’: Inquiry chair denies special treatment for journalist - The lawyer for Lehrmann inquiry chair Walter Sofronoff KC denied his client gave preferential treatment to The Australian columnist Janet Albrechtsen during the judicial probe, instead saying she just asked more questions than other journalists.

>>20417071 Lisa Wilkinson’s big win in Network Ten cost proceedings - Lisa Wilkinson has won the battle with the Ten Network over her million-dollar legal bills, although exactly how much it will be required to pay rests on who wins the defamation case brought by Bruce Lehrmann, a verdict not expected until at least next month. The Federal Court heard Wilkinson’s long-held position had been “vindicated” with a finding by judge Michael Lee that it was “reasonable” for her to engage her own legal representation in the defamation proceedings.

>>20422741 Sharaz tipped off Wilkinson about end of rape trial - Lisa Wilkinson had advance knowledge that ACT chief prosecutor Shane Drumgold was about to abandon the Bruce Lehrmann rape trial because of concerns over Brittany Higgins’ mental health - allegedly thanks to a tip off from Higgins’ partner, David Sharaz. Newly released documents from the Federal Court suggest that on the morning of 1 December 2022, Ms Wilkinson learnt from Mr Sharaz that Mr Drumgold would be bringing the Lehrmann prosecution to an end the following day.

>>20444991 Bruce Lehrmann files complaint against Ten lawyer Tasha Smithies over Lisa Wilkinson advice - Bruce Lehrmann has lodged a complaint of professional mis­conduct with the NSW legal watchdog against the Ten Network’s senior litigation counsel Tasha Smithies, alleging her advice to Lisa Wilkinson contributed to the long delay in his criminal trial. In his complaint to the NSW Legal Services Commissioner, Mr Lehrmann alleges Ms Smithies “has displayed legal conduct that is wholly inadequate to uphold the fundamental principles of the rule of law”. Mr Lehrmann claims that conduct began in June 2022, when Ms Smithies advised Wilkinson that she could give the Logies speech that caused his trial for the alleged rape of Brittany Higgins to be stayed.

>>20477884 Bruce Lehrmann to face committal hearing in June for Toowoomba rape case - Bruce Lehrmann, who has been charged with two counts of raping a woman in Queensland in 2021, will face a committal hearing in June, with his lawyers to cross-examine witnesses. Lehrmann, 28, is facing two counts of raping a woman, who he allegedly met in a nightclub weeks after he first appeared in a Canberra court over unrelated allegations he raped Brittany Higgins in Parliament House.

>>20498547 Higgins’ claims in $2.4m payout contradicted by her own evidence: lawyers - Brittany Higgins made 11 separate representations about her alleged rape in her $2.4m settlement with the commonwealth which were either false or contradicted by her own evidence in the defamation case brought by Bruce Lehrmann, his lawyers have claimed. In newly released submissions by the parties to the case, Mr Lehrmann’s lawyers set out a detailed comparison of the claims Ms Higgins made in the Commonwealth deed, signed in December 2022, with her evidence in the still-to-be-decided defamation case.

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80104e No.20545665

#34 - Part 35

Brittany Higgins Rape Allegations and Bruce Lehrmann Defamation Trial - Part 3

>>20514473 ACT pays price for Drumgold’s trial slur against Reynolds - The ACT government has apologised to former Liberal minister Linda Reynolds and paid $90,000 in damages and legal costs over accusations by former chief prosecutor Shane Drumgold during Bruce Lehrmann’s rape case that the senator had engaged in “disturbing conduct” that included political interference in the police investigation. Senator Reynolds launched defamation action in December in the wake of findings by the ­Sofronoff board of inquiry that Mr Drumgold’s allegations against her were baseless and “grossly unethical”.

>>20514482 Walter Sofronoff displayed ‘apprehension of bias’ while probing Shane Drumgold: judge - Former judge Walter Sofronoff’s conduct during an inquiry into the behaviour of former ACT chief prosecutor Shane Drumgold while prosecuting Bruce Lehrmann gave rise to “a reasonable apprehension of bias”, a judge has found. Acting Justice Stephen Kaye on Monday said Mr Sofronoff may have been “influenced” by the views of The Australian’s columnist Janet Albrechtsen through his communications with her while conducting the inquiry that ended Mr Drumgold’s career. However, he upheld almost all the findings in Mr Sofronoff’s report of serious misconduct by Mr Drumgold that the former prosecutor had claimed were unsound.

>>20519996 Linda Reynolds’ defamation action could ‘bankrupt’ Brittany Higgins’ partner David Sharaz - Brittany Higgins and Senator Reynolds’ legal teams will come face-to-face in Perth in a court-ordered mediation over the former Defence Minister’s defamation case amid judicial warnings over the “human cost” of the legal battle. Senator Reynolds’ legal team has argued she has been left highly distressed by online trolling, and alleged that Mr Sharaz had been “a constant participant” in that trolling. Legal sources say the costs associated with the proceedings had the potential to bankrupt Mr Sharaz, who has not been in full-time work since he suddenly left his role at Southern Cross Austereo a fortnight after defamation action was taken against him by Senator Reynolds last year.

>>20529679 Brittany Higgins taken to Perth hospital after marathon court hearing - Former Liberal staffer Brittany Higgins was taken to hospital on Tuesday night following a marathon defamation hearing in a Perth court with senator Linda Reynolds. It is understood the 29-year-old attended Royal Perth Hospital, but a spokesperson from the hospital said there was no record of her being admitted. Higgins’ fiancé David Sharaz declined to comment. Higgins and Sharaz had been forced to travel to Western Australia from their new home in the south of France for in-person peace talks with her former boss at the recommendation of Justice Marcus Solomon.

>>20529697 Police officers sue over Shane Drumgold claims that ‘destroyed lives’ - Five Australian Federal Police ­officers have begun defamation action against the ACT government over allegations by former chief prosecutor Shane Drumgold that they engaged in “a very clear campaign to pressure” him not to prosecute the alleged rape of Brittany Higgins. Lawyers for the five officers have sent a concerns notice to the government and to Mr Drumgold over his allegations against them, which included that they had ­engaged in “consistent and inappropriate interference” in the trial of Bruce Lehrmann. The allegations were made in a letter Mr Drumgold sent to ACT police chief Neil Gaughan on ­November 1, 2022, expressing concern over “some quite clear ­investigator interference in the criminal justice process”.

>>20535301 Shane Drumgold lands new job teaching law to Canberra students - Students at Canberra University have been startled to discover the identity of their new lecturer in the law of evidence: disgraced former ACT director of public prosecutions Shane Drumgold. Mr Drumgold, who resigned as DPP last year following the damning findings of misconduct by the Sofronoff ­inquiry, began teaching a unit of the online law of evidence course at the university on January 15 and will teach another from October 21. Academics at the university have expressed astonishment that Mr Drumgold will be teaching students, particularly in an area of law which he was found by the ­Sofronoff inquiry to have deliberately flouted. “Being appointed in the middle of this godforsaken mess to teach evidence law is just - wow, you can’t make it up,” one faculty member told The Australian.

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80104e No.20545666

#34 - Part 36

AUKUS Security Pact and Nuclear Submarine Program - Part 1

>>20092959 Over 700 American AUKUS personnel to be based in Western Australia, with radioactive storage facility also planned.

>>20123645 Video: Work starts on Adelaide AUKUS nuclear-powered submarine shipyard - The most important step has been taken on the shipyard set to build nuclear-powered submarines in a $368bn program centred on Adelaide.

>>20211902 KMT victory would ‘buy time for AUKUS and Taiwan democracy’ - Taiwan’s main opposition party says its victory at this Saturday’s election would reduce the chances of a catastrophic war in the Indo-Pacific, “buy time” for Australia’s AUKUS submarines and help the island democracy of 23 million people “outlive Xi Jinping”.

>>20240970 Nuclear Power Training Unit First - Three Royal Australian Navy Officers Graduate the Program - Three Royal Australian Navy Officers graduated the U.S. Navy’s Nuclear Power Training Unit (NPTU) Charleston today, marking a significant step in Australia’s goal to operate conventionally armed, nuclear-powered attack submarines (SSNs). Lt. Cmdr. James Heydon, Lt. Cmdr. Adam Klyne, and Lt. William Hall started at NPTU in July 2023, becoming the first cadre of Royal Australian Navy personnel to go through one of the Department of Defense’s most rigorous and demanding training pipelines.

>>20287647 AUKUS can survive Donald Trump if Anthony Albanese maintains relationship, says Scott Morrison - AUKUS architect Scott Morrison says a re-elected Donald Trump won’t pose a threat to the nuclear submarine pact as long as Anthony Albanese can forge a working relationship with the returned president.

>>20311768 Will Trump sink AUKUS if he wins? - "A second Trump presidency is not a certainty, but a forward-thinking Australian government would start planning for that possibility. Much more is at stake than bonhomie about alliance relations. If Trump trashes the AUKUS partnership on the false grounds that it involves America “losing” and Australia unfairly “winning” an alliance advantage, then Australia emerges with no credible defence posture in a very risky world." - Peter Jennings, director of Strategic Analysis Australia and executive director of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute from 2012 to 2022 - theaustralian.com.au

>>20334188 US-Australia naval missions step closer under AUKUS deal - US Republican Congressmen Rob Wittman has insisted the sale of American nuclear-powered submarines under the AUKUS pact will proceed on time, potentially allowing Australia to support the United States in future naval conflicts around the world.

>>20354783 ‘Very significant milestone’: AUKUS brings another first - Australian Navy personnel will maintain and repair US nuclear submarines for the first time in a five-month training mission to Guam that marks the next step for the AUKUS pact. A group of 37 sailors and officers have arrived on the tiny western Pacific island to be embedded with their US colleagues aboard the USS Emory S. Land, the submarine tender tasked with supporting America’s nuclear-powered vessels in the region. They will then form the first crew to work on a US nuclear submarine in Australia when one arrives at HMAS Stirling in Western Australia in the second half of this year.

>>20365390 Video: AUKUS Defense Scientists Test Robotic Vehicles - Defense scientists from Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States collaboratively tested a range of robotic vehicles and their sensors during a trial at Cultana Training Area, South Australia. The Trusted Operation of Robotic Vehicles in a Contested Environment (TORVICE) trial was conducted in fall 2023 to identify and resolve vulnerabilities faced by autonomous systems in a congested electronic warfare environment. - U.S. Department of Defense

>>20365401 Nikki Haley backs AUKUS subs deal to counter China aggression - Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley said on Monday she “absolutely” backed the sale of US submarines to Australia under the AUKUS agreement to counter China’s aggression in the Indo-Pacific. Asked by The Australian Financial Review on the sidelines of a campaign event in Charleston, South Carolina, whether she supported the sale of submarines to Australia under the AUKUS agreement, Ms Haley was unequivocal. “Yes we should,” she said. “We absolutely need to strengthen that [AUKUS] partnership,” she said.

>>20365414 MAGA luminary Steve Bannon backs AUKUS and slams US support for Ukraine ‘slaughterhouse’ - Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump is likely to back the sale of nuclear sub­marines to Australia and sees the nation as a vital ally of the US, one of his more influential supporters has declared. Steve Bannon, the man who led Mr Trump’s 2016 campaign and remains a close adviser, has dismissed speculation that Mr Trump could hinder the AUKUS pact if he retakes the White House from Democrat incumbent Joe Biden this November.

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80104e No.20545667

#34 - Part 37

AUKUS Security Pact and Nuclear Submarine Program - Part 2

>>20411164 AUKUS funding caught up in US fight over Ukraine aid, border restrictions - The fate of a multibillion-dollar package needed to progress the AUKUS pact hangs in the balance, with the money tied up in a bitter political fight in the US over America’s porous border and aid for Ukraine. After months of negotiations, the US Senate finally passed a $US95bn ($A147bn) national security bill on Tuesday (local time) which included $US3.4bn ($A5.2bn) needed to fast-track submarine production and safeguard Australia’s purchase of at least three nuclear-powered boats in the 2030s. But even before the legislation was approved with bipartisan support, Republican Speaker Mike Johnson vowed to block it in the House of Representatives, leaving its path mired in uncertainty ahead of this year’s presidential election.

>>20417129 Congress pushes back on Australian industry AUKUS fears - Senior members of Congress have pushed back against Australian defence industry concerns over restrictive new AUKUS laws, saying tough standards are needed to prevent sensitive US technology leaking to adversaries. Defence contractors and universities this week sounded the alarm on the key legislation being considered by Australia’s parliament, saying new controls on military technology would hamper their ability to sell products outside the US and UK. Congressman Bill Huizenga, who introduced key legislation on the sale of US submarines to Australia, told The Australian Financial Review the Australian industry concerns should be considered. But he said Australian companies and researchers should still expect tough standards, given America had seen other countries mishandle its important military information.

#34 - Part 38

Virginia Roberts Giuffre, Prince Andrew, Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell

>>20103801 Jeffrey Epstein associates to be named after US judge rules court documents should be unsealed in full - A US federal judge has ruled court documents revealing the names of more than 170 people linked to a case regarding disgraced American financier and sex offender Jeffrey Epstein should be "unsealed in full". The documents, which relate to a 2015 defamation lawsuit filed by victim Virginia Giuffre against Epstein's accomplice and former partner Ghislaine Maxwell, are due to be made public on January 1, giving those identified in the case time to appeal the judge's ruling.

>>20108544 Jeffrey Epstein Victim Taunts His Associates Ahead of Document Dump - Virginia Giuffre, the Jeffrey Epstein sex-trafficking victim who accused Prince Andrew of rape and received a reputed $14 million from him to settle, celebrated online Wednesday after it was revealed that more than 170 individuals linked to Epstein are due to be publicly named early next year. In a post on X, Giuffre appeared to taunt those associates of Epstein whose identities have long been hidden in the sealed documents, writing: “There’s going to be a lot of nervous ppl over Christmas and New Years… who’s on the naughty list?” Giuffre also thanked the judge responsible for the ruling ordering the unsealing of the documents, Judge Loretta Preska, praising her commitment to truth and justice.

>>20108558 Jeffrey Epstein accuser Virginia Giuffre taunts 170 people to be exposed on his ‘naughty list’ - An alleged victim of deceased pedophile Jeffrey Epstein celebrated Wednesday after it was revealed that more than 170 people with ties to the accused sex trafficker will soon be exposed - calling the reveal an early Christmas gift. Virginia Giuffre - who settled a $12 million lawsuit over allegations Epstein sex-trafficked her to Prince Andrew - appeared to taunt the dozens of associates and ex-employees whose names will be dredged up in a trove of court documents to be unsealed in the coming weeks. “There’s going to be a lot of nervous ppl over Christmas and New Years, 170 to be exact, who’s on the naughty list?” Giuffre wrote on X. “Merry early Christmas,” Giuffre, 40, said in another tweet.

>>20180695 Confidential Jeffrey Epstein case documents unsealed - Several previously confidential documents related to Jeffrey Epstein have been made public in a New York court after a years-long battle over their release. The first of what are expected to be hundreds of documents identifying more than 150 individuals were unsealed on Thursday (AEDT) after an order last month by US District Judge Loretta Preska. The documents were filed in redacted form as part of a 2015 lawsuit against Ghislaine Maxwell, who was convicted in 2021 of participating in Epstein’s sex crimes.

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80104e No.20545668

#34 - Part 39

Australia / China Tensions - Part 1

>>20093285 Philippines To Grant Japan Access to Military Bases - Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr said tensions in the South China Sea have “increased rather than diminished” in recent months, warning that a “more assertive China” posed a “real challenge” to its Asian neighbours.

>>20098451 Chinese-Australian businessman Sunny Duong found guilty of seeking to influence former minister Alan Tudge.

>>20098559 Daniel Duggan asks to be released from jail and detained at home as he fights extradition to US - An Australian pilot accused of accepting money to illegally train Chinese military personnel has denied he is a flight risk and described himself as a model prisoner in a formal request to be released into home detention.

>>20152593 With his predecessors still missing from public view, Dong Jun is named as China's defence minister - China has named former navy chief Dong Jun as its new defence minister, replacing previous defence minister Li Shangfu, who disappeared from public view four months ago.

>>20224535 TikTok ‘name and shame’ threat over tracking code - Chinese-owned social media giant TikTok has accused the Coalition of waging a war against its users after opposition home affairs spokesman James Paterson threatened to name and shame Australian companies who use the platform’s data-tracking code.

>>20231077 Video: PNG warned to protect Chinese citizens - China has demanded Papua New Guinea protect its citizens and their property after Chinese-owned shops were looted and torched during violent riots in PNG's biggest cities that claimed the lives of 16 people.

>>20231122 Australia warned over Taiwan support by China - China has issued an extraordinary warning to Australia on the eve of Taiwan’s presidential election, saying that any “miscalculations” in Canberra’s ties with the next Taiwanese government would see the Australian people “pushed over the edge of an abyss”.

>>20231153 ‘Australian people pushed over abyss’: China’s warning - "It is illogical and harmful to link China’s internal affairs with Australia’s security and safety. If Australia is tied to the chariot of Taiwan separatist forces, the Australian people would be pushed over the edge of an abyss." - Xiao Qian, Chinese Ambassador to Australia - theaustralian.com.au

>>20240914 Taiwan defies Beijing and elects ‘troublemaker’ Lai as president - Taiwanese voters have given the ruling Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) an unprecedented third term as president, delivering a historic win to William Lai in defiance of stark warnings from Beijing that electing him could trigger war.

>>20240924 Taiwanese people deliver a giant vote for Beijing’s humiliation - "William Lai’s presidential election triumph in Taiwan represents a humiliation for Beijing, a strong refusal by the people of Taiwan to be bulled, a harbinger of increased strategic danger in northern Asia and both a wake-up call and a challenge for the Albanese government." - Greg Sherridan - theaustralian.com.au

>>20244531 Canberra calls for calm in Beijing after Taiwan elects Lai - Australia has urged Xi Jinping’s government to restrain from any dangerous military activities after William Lai, the candidate Beijing openly loathes, won the weekend’s presidential election in Taiwan.

>>20251115 Beijing warns Taipei of ‘harsh ‘punishment’ after Lai win - Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi has warned that any steps towards Taiwan’s independence would be “harshly punished”, as a senior US delegation arrived in Taipei to help president-elect William Lai navigate the tense five-month period before his inauguration.

>>20251127 Nauru severs ties with Taiwan, switches diplomatic allegiance to China - Nauru has switched its diplomatic allegiance from Taiwan to China, securing a major diplomatic coup for Beijing just 48 hours after Taiwan elected its rival in a presidential election. Nauru President David Adeang said on Monday evening (AEDT) that the Pacific island would no longer recognise Taiwan as a separate country and that it was an inalienable part of China’s territory.

>>20256878 Nauru asked for cash help, Taiwan says - Taiwan says Nauru requested a large amount of economic aid ­before its diplomatic switch to recognise China to cover the ­financial gap left by the mothballing of Australia’s offshore immigration processing facility.

>>20256895 Video: China warns Australia to ‘stop making trouble on our doorstep’ - Beijing has demanded Australia stop meddling in its affairs by staying away from its maritime borders and refraining from commentary on Taiwan’s elections as Chinese President Xi Jinping considers an invitation to meet with Prime Minister Anthony Albanese in Australia this year.

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80104e No.20545671

#34 - Part 40

Australia / China Tensions - Part 2

>>20261643 Anthony Albanese declares no detention link to Nauru switch - Anthony Albanese has rejected claims Australia’s winding down of its detention facility in Nauru contributed to the island nation recognising the People’s Republic of China instead of Taiwan.

>>20266823 Millionaire investor linked to China poison case - A property investor living in a small NSW town stands accused of being at the centre of a mysterious and deadly poisoning that has enthralled millions in China for 30 years. Sightings of the woman known as Shiyan “Jasmine” Sun, in Port Stephens, on the northern central NSW coast, have sparked a petition for Anthony Albanese to deport her to China to face questions over the case. Ms Sun and husband Feiyu “Ringo” Xie have built up a multimillion-dollar property portfolio in the region, but according to campaigners seeking justice for her alleged victim, she is the prime suspect in the 1994 poisoning of her university roommate, Zhu Ling. Zhu died a month ago, turning the long-running tragedy into a potential homicide investigation. Campaigners and fellow students have now identified Shiyan Sun as Sun Wei, the woman accused of poisoning Zhu after allegedly becoming jealous of her university roommate’s talent, popularity and love life.

>>20266862 Chinese social media networks scramble to censor poisoning posts - Chinese social media networks have scrambled to censor posts about a property investor living in Australia accused of being at the centre of a mysterious and deadly poisoning that has enthralled millions in China for 30 years. Popular social media websites such as Weibo have banned users for making posts containing “illegal content” after The Australian revealed on Friday the woman alleged to be at the centre of the poisoning, and subsequent recent death, of Chinese university student Zhu Ling in the mid-1990s, is living in Port Stephens.

>>20272188 Fears of Tuvalu turning to recognition of China - China has embarked on an extraordinary push into the Pacific after Taiwan’s election, with Tuvalu’s ambassador in Taipei, Bikenibeu Paeniu telling The Weekend Australia there are fears that after its election next week his country could follow Nauru and switch recognition to Beijing.

>>20281814 ‘Golden visas’ axed in crackdown on billion dollar passports-for-sale scheme - The crackdown follows revelations by The Australian that foreign criminals and corrupt regime officials have used the red-carpet schemes to acquire Australian citizenship. While more than 7000 Chinese citizens have been granted Significant Investor visas, not a single applicant in the past 10 years has been rejected under the character test designed to help exclude criminals or those with suspiciously obtained wealth.

>>20281818 Jasmine Sun: China poison mystery case referred to Department of Home Affairs - The Department of Home Affairs has been flooded with reports alleging a property investor living in a small NSW town changed her name and date of birth to enter Australia after emerging as a possible suspect in a mysterious and deadly poisoning that has captivated millions in China for 30 years. Online campaigners, mostly based in China, have filed hundreds of reports to the Border Watch Online Report system, alleging the woman, known as Shiyan “Jasmine” Sun, had entered Australia on a false name and date of birth. Last week The Australian revealed Ms Sun is now living on the NSW Central Coast after she was accused of poisoning her university roommate in China in the mid-1990s.

>>20322599 PNG discusses security deal with China despite links to Australia, US - Papua New Guinea is in early talks with China on a potential security and policing deal, Foreign Minister Justin Tkachenko said, weeks after deadly riots in the South Pacific nation’s capital.

>>20328464 PNG to ‘stick with’ Australia on security matters, Tkatchenko says - Papua New Guinea’s Foreign Minister Justin Tkatchenko has hosed down reports the country is in talks with China on a new security agreement. Mr Tkatchenko said Beijing had offered training and equipment for PNG’s police force in September, well before recent rioting in the country, and there had been no discussions on the matter since.

>>20344838 Chinese embassy confronts Australian cyber ambassador who accused Beijing of cyber attacks - A Chinese embassy official has confronted Australia's new cyber ambassador after he told a gathering of diplomats in Canberra that Beijing was responsible for a series of devastating online attacks against this country. Details of the latest diplomatic spat with Australia's largest trading partner have emerged a fortnight after China's ambassador Xiao Qian lashed out at the Albanese government's public comments welcoming Taiwan's recent presidential elections.

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80104e No.20545674

#34 - Part 41

Australia / China Tensions - Part 3

>>20344848 China warns New Zealand about joining ‘dangerous’ AUKUS - Beijing has warned New Zealand against going down the “dangerous path” of joining AUKUS after Defence Minister Richard Marles said an Australian delegation would “very shortly” travel to Wellington to brief officials on the defence technology pact.

>>20349963 Truth lies buried in China as poisoning case rocks coastal town - In a sprawling double-storey bungalow overlooking the tranquil waters of Salamander Bay on the mid-north coast of NSW, Shiyan “Jasmine” Sun is living a charmed life. To Australian friends, she’s just a normal mum. She volunteers, hosts lavish dinner parties, and is preparing to send her only daughter to a local school. But Sun, previously known in China as Sun Wei, is accused of harbouring a dark secret. In the mid-1990s, as a young chemistry student at China’s most prestigious university, she came under suspicion of poisoning her university roommate, the beautiful and popular Zhu Ling.

>>20359492 Video: Chinese court sentences Australian Yang Hengjun to death with two-year good behaviour reprieve - Australian Yang Hengjun has been sentenced to death by a Chinese court, Foreign Minister Penny Wong has confirmed. It is a suspended sentence that can be converted to a life sentence after two years subject to good behaviour. The Australian citizen, writer and democracy activist has been imprisoned in China since 2019 on charges of spying, which he has always denied. Senator Wong has called the court's decision "harrowing" and "appalling". The Australian government has petitioned for his release, but officials had not been able to attend Dr Yang's closed trial, which began in 2021.

>>20359509 Video: Yang Hengjun given suspended death sentence in China - Foreign Minister Penny Wong has announced Australian writer Yang Hengjun has received a suspended death sentence in China. "Dr Yang has been detained since 2019 on national security charges," Ms Wong said. "His verdict and his sentence have been subject to repeated delays since his closed trial on the 27th of May, 2021. "The Australian government has advocated for Dr Yang with China at every opportunity and at the highest levels. "We have consistently called for basic standards of justice, procedural fairness and humane treatment for Dr Yang in accordance with international norms and China’s legal obligations." - Sky News Australia

>>20359539 Yang Hengjun sentenced to death with a two-year reprieve - Foreign Affairs Minister Penny Wong has vowed to pursue every avenue to save Australian father Yang Hengjun, who was on Monday given a suspended death sentence in Beijing after five years of being held on vague espionage charges. In a decision that shocked Yang’s family and Australian diplomats, the pro-democracy writer was sentenced to death with a two-year reprieve by a Chinese court, shattering the Australian and Chinese government’s push to stabilise relations after years of turmoil.

>>20359568 ‘Appalling’ death sentence for dissident rocks relations with Beijing - Efforts to stabilise the relationship with Beijing have suffered a serious setback after a Chinese court handed a suspended death sentence to jailed dual-citizen and democracy advocate Yang Hengjun. Foreign Minister Penny Wong said the government was “appalled” at what she described as “harrowing news”. China’s ambassador to Australia Xiao Qian was summoned on Monday by the secretary of Foreign Affairs, Jan Adams, for an explanation. At the same time, Senator Wong said Australian had to keep forging ahead with the rapprochement with China. “Stabilisation means we cooperate where we can, disagree where we must, and we engage in the national interest,” she said. “This is a decision within China’s legal system. Clearly this is an occasion which we disagree. However, Australia will continue to advocate for the interests of Dr Yang.”

>>20359589 Beijing gives Australian citizen Yang Hengjun suspended death sentence - Australian citizen Yang Hengjun has been given a suspended death sentence by the Chinese government almost three years after he was accused of espionage in a closed, one-day trial in Beijing. Dr Yang’s sentence, which was delivered on Monday morning, may be reduced to life in prison after two years of good behaviour. A spokesman for Dr Yang’s family said the sentence was at the “extreme end of worst expectations”. “The family is obviously shocked and devastated by this news,” the spokesman said. Monday’s sentencing came only three months after his sons had written a letter to Prime Minister Anthony Albanese pleading that their father’s plight would be brought up in a meeting in Beijing with China’s leader Xi Jinping last November.

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80104e No.20545676

#34 - Part 42

Australia / China Tensions - Part 4

>>20359599 An Australian sentenced to death. Penny Wong won’t face a bigger test than this - The Albanese government’s China stabilisation strategy faces its biggest test with the shock sentence handed to Australian academic and pro-democracy writer Yang Hengjun. Harrowing is how Foreign Minister Penny Wong described Yang’s suspended death sentence, which was far harsher than many observers had expected. At best, Yang will spend the rest of his life in jail after languishing in detention in Beijing for five years on suspicion of spying. The government must now decide how strongly to press Yang’s case while bracing for possible blowback from Beijing, which bristles at criticism of its legal system. Wine growers and lobster farmers will fear they will once again be the victims of a diplomatic dispute.

>>20359623 Inconvenient Truths by Jennifer Zeng Tweet - Breaking: Australian writer Yang Hengjun was sentenced to death, suspended for two years. Yang Hengjun was arrested in August 2019 on suspicion of #espionage and has so far served more than four years in a #Beijing prison. I actually knew/met him many years ago when I was in Australia, at a Chinese Writers Association event. He later on went back to China and married a very famous "Wumao wife" called Yuan Ruijuan. This made many people raise their eyebrows… Don't know what to say…

>>20365328 Video: Prime Minister Anthony Albanese expresses 'outrage' over Yang Hengjun sentence, vows to increase pressure on China - Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said Australia has expressed "outrage" to China over its decision to hand detained citizen Yang Hengjun a suspended death sentence. The ruling on Dr Yang's case, handed down on Monday, may be reduced to life in prison if he is found to have met good behaviour requirements, and strikes a devastating blow for advocates campaigning for his release. Speaking at a press conference on Tuesday, Mr Albanese vowed Australia would respond "unequivocally" to the decision. "We have conveyed, firstly, to China our dismay, our despair, our frustration, but to put it really simply our outrage at this verdict," he said. "This is a very harsh sentence on Dr Yang who is a man who is not in good health and we will continue to make the strongest representations, we of course called in the ambassador yesterday, but we will make representations at all levels. "We have said very clearly that we will cooperate with China where we can, but we will disagree where we must. We must disagree with this harsh action."

>>20365336 Australian national Yang Jun sentenced to death with a two-year reprieve for espionage; his rights fully exercised: FM - "The Beijing No.2 Intermediate People’s Court publicly pronounced the first-instance verdict on the espionage case of Australian national Yang Jun, in accordance with the law in which Yang was found guilty of espionage and was sentenced to death with a two-year reprieve and all his personal property was confiscated, FM spokesperson Wang Wenbin said on Monday. As state secrets are involved, the trial of Yang's case in May, 2021 was not heard in public or attended by the public according to law. In response to Australian media's hype of the case, the Chinese Foreign Ministry also noted that China firmly opposed to Australia's gross unjustifiable interference in its handling of the case and its judicial sovereignty." - Global Times - globaltimes.cn

>>20365339 Global warning: fear rules Xi Jinping’s security state - "Xi Jinping’s government could not put it any clearer: foreign passports are not going to protect you from China’s legal system with Communist Party characteristics. Naturalised Australian Yang Hengjun’s death sentence, albeit delivered with caveats of reprieve, confirms again just how low the ceiling is on any further improvement in Canberra’s dealings with Beijing. Monday’s chilling judgment is much bigger than the just bilateral relationship. Yang, who once lived on Sydney’s leafy north shore, has now become the face of an increasingly brazen campaign by Beijing’s security apparatus. The message, which China’s security state is going to extraordinary lengths to publicise, is this: get on its wrong side at your peril." - Will Glasgow - theaustralian.com.au

>>20371216 Who is Yang Hengjun, sentenced to death in China? - Human rights dissident, pro-democracy blogger, Chinese government official, daigou entrepreneur. Dr Yang Hengjun has had many different lives throughout his decades in China, Australia, and the United States. On Monday, the father-of-two was given a suspended death sentence by a Beijing court for espionage. The sentence effectively means the graduate of the University of Technology Sydney will spend the rest of his life behind bars and could be executed by lethal injection if he breaches a two-year good-behaviour period.

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80104e No.20545678

#34 - Part 43

Australia / China Tensions - Part 5

>>20371251 Yang Hengjun: How an Australian ended up in Beijing’s crosshairs - On the New Year’s Eve before he was arrested, Dr Yang Hengjun was on a cruise. Thirteen hours behind China, he was sailing from Miami to Central America. Yang was not just on a holiday. The cruise was also a business opportunity for the academic and pro-democracy blogger who had transformed into a self-described peddler, selling everything from jeans to aphrodisiacs to an increasingly wealthy Chinese market hungry for foreign luxuries. While Yang was on the quarterdeck looking back on a successful year, China’s security services were watching him. Less than three weeks later, he would be seized by a squad of 10 security agents immediately after arriving at Guangzhou airport in south-eastern China. Yang would spend the next five years in a 1.2-metre cell being tortured for crimes he and the Australian government say he has never committed.

>>20377014 China’s Premier Li Qiang expected to visit Australia despite Yang Hengjun’s death sentence - Preparations for the first visit by a Chinese leader to Australia in seven years remain under way despite the death sentence given to Dr Yang Hengjun, as the Albanese government argues high-level dialogue is the best way to deal with its growing list of “pointy disputes” with Beijing. The Prime Minister on Tuesday refused to comment on whether the suspended death sentence for the Australian citizen would derail the visit by Premier Li Qiang. “We’ll respond directly and clearly and unequivocally to China. What we won’t do is ­conduct diplomatic negotiations through the media,” Mr Albanese said.

>>20377033 Video: Australian Writer’s Death Sentence & Former CCTV Reporter’s TW Cognitive Warfare: Common Thread? - Australian Chinese writer Yang Hengjun was suddenly sentenced to death by the CCP after being detained in China for more than 4 years. This shocked not only Australia and the overseas Chinese community, but also the world. Yang was charged with espionage, and many people believe that he is actually a double agent. For me, his case has important implications for our understanding of the ever more complex and sophisticated cognitive warfare that the CCP is waging against the world, so today I’d like to talk briefly about his case. - Inconvenient Truths by Jennifer Zeng

>>20422775 Dysfunctional state of defence shows ALP is China’s lapdog - "Labor in opposition was very quick to condemn the Chinese buyout of the Solomon Islands government and the failure of then minister Marise Payne. It made political hay about the Chinese purchase of the strategic Port of Darwin. Yet in government Labor had a whitewash inquiry into Darwin that said there was nothing to see. The Solomons is still as deeply corrupted now as when Scott Morrison let China station a “police force” there and develop a port capable of taking Chinese naval vessels as close to Townsville as Brisbane. Maybe the Albanese government thinks Australians are just too busy with the cost-of-living crisis to care. But China will be missing none of this. It will see a PM grinning to gratuitous compliments while avoiding raising matters of genuine national interest. It will see a Defence Minister at war with his generals and not having what it takes to get more money for much-needed capacity right now." - Cameron Milner - theaustralian.com.au

>>20422838 Palau urges Australia to push US for funding, warning China could force Pacific to ‘sacrifice’ Taiwan - The president of Palau has called on Australia to intervene in negotiations with Washington over funding for the Pacific as he warns that Beijing is aggressively pursuing its interests across the region with the goal of forcing the islands to “sacrifice” Taiwan. Surangel Whipps jnr, who has led the strategically important island nation that divides Hawaii from Asia for the past four years, said the Chinese government was targeting officials across the Pacific at the same time as the US Congress delays billions of dollars in funding it promised regional leaders would be ready by October.

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80104e No.20545680

#34 - Part 44

Australia / China Tensions - Part 6

>>20439377 Detained former pilot's family 'boxed into a corner' - The wife of a man who has spent more than a year in jail facing extradition for allegedly training Chinese pilots says the United States government has his family boxed into a corner as they search for funding for his legal defence. Daniel Edmund Duggan was arrested on an extradition warrant at a supermarket car park in the NSW central west in October 2022 at the request of US authorities. His wife Saffrine Duggan's plan to sell a property on the NSW south coast to fund her husband's legal defence was rejected by a court in December, despite Australian Federal Police admitting they mistakenly identified Duggan as the director of the company that owned it. Ms Duggan said the family now had to look elsewhere to afford lawyers. "The US government has boxed us into a corner with no care for the rights of our Australian family," she said in a statement.

>>20450450 Yang Hengjun waives right to appeal Beijing’s suspended death sentence - Australian Yang Hengjun has waived his legal right to appeal his suspended death sentence in the hope that Beijing will let the democracy advocate get medical parole that could save his life. Foreign Minister Penny Wong said she respected the “difficult decision” Dr Yang had made and the Australian government would continue to advocate for him “at every opportunity, and at the highest levels”. “We will continue to press for Dr Yang’s interests and wellbeing, and provide consular assistance to him,” she said. “I acknowledge the strength that Dr Yang’s family and friends have demonstrated through this period. All Australians want to see Dr Yang reunited with his loved ones,” she said.

>>20455841 Australia taking a path of ‘arming to the teeth’ pleases US, harms itself - "Australia is making unwise decisions. Australia should not continue to follow the example of the US, using "national security" as a pretext for enhancing its military capabilities. For Australia, the navy overhaul seems to be a way to develop its military strength and elevate its position within the US alliance systems. However, Canberra's cooperation with Washington could potentially expose Australia to risky situations. Acting as a pawn in the US Indo-Pacific Strategy could lead to Australia being used as cannon fodder, ultimately benefiting the US economically and politically, while Australia may end up sacrificing its financial and human resources, which is shortsighted." - Global Times - globaltimes.cn

>>20455850 Analysts warn multibillion navy overhaul 'irrational and dangerous' as Australia eyes largest navy buildup since WWII - "Australia on Tuesday announced a multibillion overhaul of its navy, claiming it is responding to "increasing geostrategic uncertainty." Chinese analysts criticized the plan as being "irrational and dangerous" as it neither matches Australia's real needs in geopolitics nor its economic capability. They warned that the assertive plan may trigger an arms race and deal a blow to the security and stability of Australia as well as the whole Asia-Pacific region." - GT staff reporters - globaltimes.cn

>>20493736 Di Sanh Duong jailed after guilty verdict in foreign interference test case - Chinese community leader Di Sanh Duong will spend at least 12 months in jail after he became the first person to be tried and convicted for preparing or planning an act of foreign interference when he sought to influence former Liberal MP Alan Tudge. Justice Richard Maidment sentenced the Duong, 68, to two years and nine months imprisonment, however he can be released after 12 months on a four-year good behaviour bond. The month-long trial centred around a well-publicised $37,450 hospital donation the Victorian businessman handed to former Coalition Minister Alan Tudge, who he tried to influence, in June 2020 for the Royal Melbourne Hospital. The court heard that three months after the donation, Duong sought assistance from Mr Tudge to help him obtain a travel exemption for his associate and reminded him of the financial contribution he made.

>>20493756 China's foreign minister expected in Australia for high-level talks within weeks - Officials are planning for China's foreign minister to come to Australia for high-level talks within weeks as both countries prepare for Premier Li Qiang to make a state visit later this year. The federal government has signalled it's determined to maintain dialogue with top leaders in Beijing despite tensions between the two countries flaring once again in the wake of the suspended death sentence handed to Australian academic Yang Hengjun.

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80104e No.20545681

#34 - Part 45

Australia / China Tensions - Part 7

>>20493768 Chinese police work in Kiribati, Hawaii's Pacific neighbour - Chinese police are working in the remote atoll nation of Kiribati, a Pacific Ocean neighbour of Hawaii, with uniformed officers involved in community policing and a crime database program, Kiribati officials told Reuters. Kiribati has not publicly announced the policing deal with China, which comes as Beijing renews a push to expand security ties in the Pacific Islands in an intensifying rivalry with the United States. Kiribati, a nation of 115,000 residents, is considered strategic despite being small, as it is relatively close to Hawaii and controls one of the biggest exclusive economic zones in the world, covering more than 3.5 million square kilometres (1.35 million square miles) of the Pacific. It hosts a Japanese satellite tracking station. Kiribati's acting police commissioner Eeri Aritiera told Reuters the Chinese police on the island work with local police, but there was no Chinese police station in Kiribati. China's embassy in Kiribati did not respond to a Reuters request for comment on the role of its police. In a January social media post the embassy named the leader of "the Chinese police station in Kiribati".

>>20493777 'No role' for China in Pacific policing, Australian minister says - Australia's Pacific Minister Pat Conroy said there should be "no role" for China in policing the Pacific Islands, and Australia will train more local security forces to fill gaps, after Reuters reported Chinese police are working in Kiribati. The United States on Monday cautioned Pacific Islands nations against assistance from Chinese security forces, after Kiribati's acting police commissioner Eeri Aritiera told Reuters last week that uniformed Chinese officers were working with its police in community policing and a crime database program. "We are aware that they [China] are seeking a greater security role in the Pacific and we have been consistent in our view that there is no role for China in policing, or broader security, in the Pacific," Conroy said in an interview with Reuters.

>>20510160 Video: ASIO cleared of unlawfully luring Daniel Duggan back to Australia, agency chief Mike Burgess says - The spy agency ASIO says it has been cleared by the intelligence watchdog of allegations of impropriety raised by the Australian citizen Daniel Duggan as he fights extradition to the US. His legal team had raised concerns an “unlawful lure”, in the form of an ASIO clearance for an Australian aviation security identification card, may have been used to entice Duggan back to Australia where he could be arrested on behalf of the US and extradited. The ASIO chief, Mike Burgess, revealed the outcome of the months-long IGIS inquiry in an interview with Guardian Australia’s Australian Politics podcast. “Mr Duggan...has made allegations to the inspector general about my organisation. The inspector general conducted his own inquiry [with] full access to everything we did. He found all the allegations against us were unfounded,” Burgess said.

>>20514492 ‘Devastating conflict’: Penny Wong warns of destabilisation, provocation by China - Foreign Affairs Minister Penny Wong has issued a stark warning about the risk of conflict in the Indo-Pacific as China rises to superpower status, arguing the region’s character is under threat from destabilising and provocative actions. In comments that did not directly name, but were clearly aimed at, China, Wong said: “We see claims and actions that are inconsistent with international law, particularly the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS); the legal order for the seas and oceans. “We face destabilising, provocative and coercive actions, including unsafe conduct at sea and in the air and militarisation of disputed features. We know that military power is expanding, but measures to constrain military conflict are not, and there are few concrete mechanisms for averting it.”

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80104e No.20545683

#34 - Part 46

Australia / China Tensions - Part 8

>>20520009 ASIO accused of 'whitewashing' role in detention of pilot facing extradition - Australia's intelligence agency ASIO has been accused of "whitewashing" its role in the arrest and detention of former United States military pilot Daniel Duggan ahead of his latest court hearing. ASIO director-general of security Mike Burgess told the Guardian a secret report by the Inspector General of Intelligence and Security (IGIS) had found his agency did nothing wrong regarding Duggan's arrest in NSW on behalf of the US in October 2022. But his supporters told 9news.com.au he has been refused access to the classified document, which resulted from a request by Duggan for IGIS - the ASIO regulator - to investigate the spy agency's role in 10 matters relating to his case. They claim Burgess also failed to reveal that Duggan's legal team is in receipt of a letter from IGIS that said it has found some "improprieties" in ASIO's behaviour. Duggan's supporters say these findings remain classified and unavailable to them and raise the question over whether he can get a fair extradition hearing.

>>20520018 Spy agency hits out at 'misleading' claim about top gun - ASIO has hit back as a "misleading" statement by an ex-fighter pilot's family that rebuffed claims by Australia's domestic spy chief concerning the former top gun. The circumstances leading to his arrest in regional NSW in October 2022 were subject to an inquiry by the spy watchdog, the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security, after Mr Duggan raised ASIO's role in 10 matters. The Duggan family on Tuesday said a letter from the inspector-general acknowledged he had found impropriety. An ASIO spokeswoman accused the Duggans of issuing a misleading statement. "IGIS found that one ASIO activity raised a propriety issue, but this did not affect the IGIS's conclusion about the lawfulness of ASIO's activities. The IGIS report is unequivocal in its findings that ASIO acted both ethically and within the law at all times in matters regarding Daniel Duggan. Therefore, the statement from Mr Duggan's public relations company is misleading."

>>20525312 Video: ‘Veil of secrecy’ over incarcerated Top Gun pilot Daniel Duggan - The wife of a former US marine pilot incarcerated in a maximum-security prison for 500 days says her family is “heartbroken” by his treatment at the hands of the Australian government. Daniel Edmund Duggan has been in custody since October 2022 after the US indicated it would seek his extradition for charges of conspiracy, arms trafficking and money laundering. Mr Duggan is fighting extradition to his home country over allegations he illegally trained Chinese pilots. Standing outside Sydney Downing Centre Local Court on Wednesday, Mr Duggan’s wife Saffrine said her husband was “suffering terribly”. “Every day, I ask myself how can this be happening to my family?” she said. “He is suffering terribly and so are we.” She said there was a “veil of secrecy” over her husband’s “inhumane incarceration” and called for an end to the “cloak and dagger skulduggery”.

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80104e No.20545686

#34 - Part 47

Child Sexual Abuse, Pedophilia, Human Trafficking and Satanism Investigations - Part 1

>>20092981 Cardinal Becciu found guilty on auspicious day for George Pell - The guilty verdicts of Cardinal Angelo Becciu, nine other individuals and four companies in a Vatican City courtroom came on an auspicious day. Saturday, December 16, was the 57th anniversary of the ordination of George Pell to the priesthood in St Peter’s Basilica in Rome. It was also the second anniversary of the death of his sister and best friend, Margaret Pell.

>>20098476 Former Sacred Heart Primary School teacher Gary Bloom pleads guilty to historical child sexual abuse. And he doesn’t have to spend a day in jail.

>>20103781 HIV-positive pedophile Jadd William Brooker jailed for 36 years with order to serve 29 years before becoming eligible for parole - Brooker, 41, pleaded guilty to 182 sexual abuse and exploitation charges following his arrest, in 2020, by SA’s elite Joint Anti Child Exploitation Team. He had more than 20 victims across Australia and around the world - some of whom he tried to infect with HIV. Brooker filmed himself in these attempts, prompting JACET to dub his crimes “the worst and most degrading” they had investigated up to that point. He compiled 4.5 million images and 50,000 messages of child exploitation - which he asked family to delete following his arrest – as the centre of an online pedophile syndicate. Brooker’s victims described him, in their statements to the court, as “an evil parasite” who “left a piece of himself” in every child whose innocence he destroyed.

>>20108528 Anglican Church finds former governor-general Peter Hollingworth failed children over reporting obligations - The Anglican Church has found against former governor-general Peter Hollingworth over two allegations of significant neglect of a child regarding his handling of a sex abuse scandal. An internal Anglican investigation into seven allegations has found against Dr Hollingworth twice on the grounds of an alleged failure to take action to protect children.

>>20114659 Paedophile ex-teacher Gary Bloom who dodged jail in Australia now running B&B in Aberdeen - A convicted child abuser and ex-teacher who avoided a prison sentence in Australia is now running a B&B in Aberdeen. Convicted child abuser Gary Bloom, 58, sparked fury when he walked free from court in Victoria, south-east Australia, with a three-year suspended sentence after pleading guilty to three charges of indecent assault. The geologist, who has worked for oil companies such as Shell, was allowed by Aussie authorities to return to Aberdeen, where he was traced by the Daily Record to a bed and breakfast in the city centre. His victim, who was 10 at the time of the attack, has told of his horror at watching Bloom evade justice, and said he now has “unfettered access to children in Scotland”.

>>20152622 Sextortion a case of ‘life and death’ for kids - Vulnerable children and teenagers are being actively encouraged to take their own lives by sexual ­extortionists, with tragic cases in Australia, the US and other countries of deaths by suicide as a result. Online safety experts and child-abuse investigators have slammed social media giants for not doing the basics to protect users from the ruthless scammers, who are trapping children into sending intimate images and then threatening to expose them to family and friends. Julie Inman Grant, head of the nation’s online safety ­regulator eSafety, urged parents to “swallow any fear or judgment or ­bewilderment” if a child admits to being targeted. Ms Inman Grant’s urgent message is for anyone caught up in “sextortion” to immediately cut all contact with and block black­mailers, seek help, and to make no payments. “These criminals are skilled and know how to manipulate,” she said.

>>20162649 Video: Satanic Temple plans ‘After School Satan Club’ at Memphis elementary school - The Satanic Temple, an organization based out of Massachusetts, is planning an “After School Satan Club” at a Memphis elementary school. The group made the announcement that the club will launch on January 10 at Chimneyrock Elementary School, the first of its kind in the State of Tennessee. The Satanic Temple’s flyer explicitly states that event is not endorsed nor sponsored by Memphis-Shelby County Schools.

>>20162749 Video: The Satanic Temple to launch ‘After School Satan Club’ at Memphis elementary school - The Satanic Temple plans to host its “After School Satan Club” at Chimneyrock Elementary School in Cordova. The Satanic Temple claims to be a non-theistic religion that views Satan as a figure who represents “championing the human mind and spirit.” The group says the club does not attempt to convert children to any religious ideology. The clubs began nationwide in 2020.

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80104e No.20545689

#34 - Part 48

Child Sexual Abuse, Pedophilia, Human Trafficking and Satanism Investigations - Part 2

>>20162794 Video: ‘Satan has no room in this district’: Planned after-school ‘Satan Club’ sparking controversy - Faith-based leaders and school officials in Tennessee say they do not approve of an after-school “Satan Club” that is planning to start at an area elementary school. “Satan has no room in this district,” said Althea E. Greene, board chair with Memphis-Shelby County Schools. “We can uphold freedom of speech while uplifting our students and families.”

>>20162857 Video: Memphis school officials address ‘After School Satan Club’ - Officials with Memphis-Shelby County Schools took a public stand Wednesday on a new after-school program operated by The Satanic Temple. “I want to assure you that I do not endorse, I do not support the beliefs of this organization at the center of the recent headlines,” Interim Superintendent Toni Williams said. “I do, however, support the law. As a superintendent, I am duty-bound to uphold our board policy, state laws and the constitution.”

>>20162928 Video: Protests planned ahead of After School Satan Club launch - The Uvalde Foundation for Kids announced Sunday it plans to protest at Chimneyrock Elementary School in January 2024. This comes less than a week after the Satanic Temple announced the planned launch of its After School Satan Club at the elementary school.

>>20162967 Protests canceled ahead of After School Satan Club launch - The Uvalde Foundation has canceled its planned protests at Chimneyrock Elementary School. The protests were in response to The Satanic Temple’s announcement that an After School Satan Club would be held at the Memphis elementary school beginning January 10. The foundation cited unspecified threats and increased concerns about the protests interrupting students and school activities as reasons for the cancelation at Chimneyrock and another school hosting the same club in Olathe, Kansas.

>>20162967 Q Post #3967 - These people are pure evil. This is not about politics. You are ready. Q - https://qanon.pub/#3967

>>20162967 Q Post #4545 - Humanity is good, but, when we let our guard down we allow darkness to infiltrate and destroy. Like past battles fought, we now face our greatest battle at present, a battle to save our Republic, our way of life, and what we decide (each of us) now will decide our future. Will we be a free nation under God? Or will we cede our freedom, rights and liberty to the enemy? If America falls so does the world. If America falls darkness will soon follow. Only when we stand together, only when we are united, can we defeat this highly entrenched dark enemy. This is not about politics. This is about preserving our way of life and protecting the generations that follow. We are living in Biblical times. Children of light vs children of darkness. United against the Invisible Enemy of all humanity. Q - https://qanon.pub/#4545

>>20174801 Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP to celebrate memorial Mass for Cardinal George Pell on 10 January anniversary - Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP will be the principal celebrant at a memorial Mass for Cardinal George Pell at St Mary’s Cathedral from 5.30pm on Wednesday 10 January, the first anniversary of his entrance into eternal life. All are welcome to attend the Mass and pray at the cardinal’s tomb in the crypt. Archbishop Fisher recently paid tribute to him for doing more through his work for the church international and in his own country than any other Australian.

>>20224569 Sydney remembers Cardinal George Pell on first anniversary of his death - Thousands gathered at St Mary’s Cathedral in Sydney to pray and pay tribute to a man they loved for his vision and “big heart” a year after his death in Rome. Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP, the principal celebrant at the memorial Mass for Cardinal George Pell, said that no Australian has done more for the church worldwide.

>>20231597 George Pell a victim of Victoria’s ‘corrupt legal system’, says Archbishop Anthony Fisher - Australia’s leading Catholic cleric has declared that the late cardinal George Pell’s wrongful conviction and imprisonment was a result of “the corrupt Victorian legal system” following a media, political and police witch hunt. The Catholic Archbishop of Sydney, Anthony Fisher, marked the first anniversary of Pell’s death in Rome of a heart attack after hip surgery with the strongest church statements yet about the cardinal’s charges, conviction and imprisonment on sexual abuse charges and his later “unanimous High Court exoneration”.

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80104e No.20545692

#34 - Part 49

Child Sexual Abuse, Pedophilia, Human Trafficking and Satanism Investigations - Part 3

>>20236521 Video: FBI: Former Galleria employee allegedly recorded sexual assault of toddler in mall restroom - "A former Houston Galleria employee is in federal custody for allegedly recording videos of himself sexually assaulting at least two toddlers. According to a federal criminal complaint obtained by KPRC 2, 29-year-old Arthur Hector Fernandez III may have recorded one of those videos in a public bathroom at the shopping center. The details in the complaint are graphic and disturbing. The victims were believed to be between 2 to 3 years old. Both of the children had relatives who also worked at the Galleria, according to the complaint, and Fernandez allegedly offered to walk the kids around the mall when their relatives couldn’t find a babysitter or could not afford childcare during their work shifts. In early December, the Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation contacted the FBI after four videos got uploaded to “a private, by invitation only, forum on the dark web,” according to the complaint. “Utilizing an open-source image repository, FBI HQ was able to locate a toddler that was visually similar to one of the victims depicted in one of the videos via … Facebook and Instagram pages,” the complaint reads. The FBI then interviewed one of the toddler’s relatives, who identified the toddler after reviewing a sanitized image from the video. “It’s not the white van that’s pulling up. It’s the person next door,” FBI Houston Supervisory Special Agent Torrence White told only KPRC 2 in an interview. “Oftentimes we are looking for monsters just because how heinous the crime may be, but we’re dealing with humans that are doing horrific things.”" - Bryce Newberry - click2houston.com

>>20251140 Arrest warrant issued for Australian man facing child sex abuse charges after he fails to attend court in Timor-Leste - An Australian man accused of multiple counts of child sexual abuse is the subject of an arrest warrant in Timor-Leste, after failing to show up to court last month. Prosecutors in the country's capital Dili confirmed 75-year-old Robert Trott, a kebab shop owner and one-time political adviser in Dili, did not attend a hearing to face charges in late December. Mr Trott is charged with sexually abusing a girl in Dili over a number of years. He strongly denies the allegations against him, telling the ABC "the whole case is based on lies".

>>20266925 Police warn parents of ‘sextortion’ risk as kids go back to school - “Sextortion” cases targeting teenage boys have doubled in a year, as police and crisis counsellors deal with a deluge of children blackmailed over intimate images sent online. The Australian Federal Police (AFP) is urging parents to stay vigilant as children head back to school, when they connect with new friends through gaming and social media. Police said the new school year offered a fresh hunting ground for predators to blackmail teenagers and children, by infiltrating their online friend networks.

>>20266958 Former Carey students allege historical sex abuse and grooming by teachers - Former students of the elite Carey Baptist Grammar School allege they were sexually abused and groomed by male teachers when they were enrolled at the co-educational private school in Melbourne’s east decades ago. The claims involve three male teachers, and the alleged offending was against two girls and one boy between the mid-1970s and the early 1990s. Julianne Brandon, director of community engagement at Carey, said the school was unaware of any specific details relating to the allegations and was awaiting further information. Law firm Judy Courtin Legal is preparing to issue proceedings in relation to the allegations and placed advertisements in local publications calling for witnesses.

>>20272244 Schools urged to be on lookout for signs of forced marriage as numbers rise across Australia - Federal police are calling on schools across the country to keep an eye out for the warning signs of forced marriage in a renewed bid to disrupt human trafficking in Australia.

>>20272324 Video: ‘I know about the situation at home, Dassi. I’m here to support you’ - Dassi Erlich was sexually assaulted by her school principal, Malka Leifer - and also facing abuse at home, an exclusive extract from her new tell-all book reveals.

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80104e No.20545695

#34 - Part 50

Child Sexual Abuse, Pedophilia, Human Trafficking and Satanism Investigations - Part 4

>>20276768 Dark web detectives say abuse videos traced to NSW holiday town - To detectives working through horrific child abuse videos posted on the dark web, mundane domestic details inadvertently captured by the abuser’s camera told them a child was suffering somewhere in Australia. Frame by frame, week after week, detectives pieced together fragments of information until, days before Christmas, armed officers descended on Port Macquarie on the NSW Mid North Coast. Investigators will allege items from the home, including clothing linked to both the man and the child, were matched to the videos uploaded to the dark web.

>>20276793 Archbishop Anthony Fisher: The courage of Cardinal Pell - "In sporting parlance, those rare players who master every position on the field are called ‘unicorns’. Cardinal Pell was such a unicorn in the arena of faith and morals. He had the imagination, focus and energy to attend to all the goods of human flourishing, more or less all the time. When the young George Pell was deciding his vocation, many possibilities lay before him: intellectual, footballer, leader. Faith and reason taught him that to flourish human beings need life and health, truth and beauty, friendship and family, work and leisure, morality and religion. It is to serve all these dimensions of human happiness and participations in the divine that the Church exists, and to which George decided to lend his considerable gifts as a unicorn playing for every human good." - Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP - catholicweekly.com.au

>>20276793 https://qanon.pub/?q=Pell - https://qanon.pub/?q=cardinal-george-pell - https://qanon.pub/?q=pecking

>>20287680 Tasmanian cop ‘abused boys for 30 years’ as other officers also accused - A pedophile policeman groomed and abused boys for over 30 years, despite concerns being raised, an investigation has found, while identifying allegations against three other officers. Tasmanian Senior Sergeant Paul Reynolds killed himself in 2018 while being investigated over allegations of child abuse and grooming, but still received a full police funeral. An independent inquiry by former war crimes prosecutor Regina Weiss on Tuesday issued an interim report, pointing to “shocking” police failures and allegations against three other former officers. “The accounts of grooming and abuse as told by the victim-survivors, their families and observers are harrowing, shocking and devastating,” Ms Weiss said in her interim report. “The betrayal of trust felt by so many is evident. What is also shocking is that Paul Reynolds’ conduct continued for over three decades despite it being known or suspected that … (he) was, at the very least, interacting inappropriately with teenage boys.”

>>20300117 EXCLUSIVE: Dassi Erlich on surviving Malka Leifer - "In the middle of the night in March 2008, Malka Leifer, then a highly respected principal of the ultra-Orthodox Adass Israel School in Elsternwick, was rushed through the shadows of Melbourne Airport to board a 1.20am flight to Israel, after allegations were raised that she’d been molesting her students. The events of that evening sparked an extraordinary 15-year battle by the lion-hearted sisters - Dassi Erlich, Elly Sapper and Nicole Meyer. They became familiar faces as they fought for Leifer’s extradition to Australia, then justice through the courts. Now Dassi has shared the details of their relentless, exhausting, and all-consuming pursuit in a powerful memoir, In Bad Faith. The book not only shines a light on the strict Jewish sect which protected Leifer, but also reveals for the first time the cruel and sadistic abuse Dassi and her siblings suffered at the hands of their parents, which drove them into their abuser’s arms." - Sue Smethurst - womensweekly.com.au

>>20322661 Horror behind the gate: how internet sleuths rescued ‘Nenita’ - A prolific sex abuse ring in The Philippines has been busted by an Australian charity that uses citizen sleuths to track down child victims of heinous crimes, leading to the rescue of a five-year-old girl. Destiny Rescue was instrumental in the dramatic removal from harm of the girl and the arrest of her mother, another relative and a neighbour. A former New Zealand detective working for the charity was able to find her by following clues in thousands of messages allegedly sent by the neighbour over more than 18 months. In the end, it was a distinctive green gate in the background of imagery that led to the breakthrough, with the investigator using Google’s Street View to find the gate and locate the girl.

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80104e No.20545698

#34 - Part 51

Child Sexual Abuse, Pedophilia, Human Trafficking and Satanism Investigations - Part 5

>>20328494 Beyond Leifer: Dassi Erlich tells her story - "Dassi Erlich has been through so much trauma that it’s a relief to see her looking so well. As we sit down together in a cafe in Elsternwick in the heart of Melbourne’s Jewish community, she radiates a calm confidence and even smiles occasionally. It’s only been six months since Malka Leifer was sentenced to 15 years in prison for sexually abusing Dassi and her sister Elly Sapper. The verdict ruled a line under an awful chapter of her life, but she says it will take a long time for her to come to terms with everything that has happened." - Michael Visontay - plus61j.net.au

>>20334230 Church abuse survivors allege negligence in class action against own lawyers - Eight survivors of institutional childhood sexual abuse have launched a class action against one of Australia's most prominent sexual abuse law firms, which they allege failed to obtain proper compensation from the institutions responsible for their abuse. In a group proceeding commenced in Victoria's Supreme Court on Wednesday, former clients of specialist abuse law firm Waller Legal alleged that it failed to properly claim for their "loss of earnings" compensation when pursuing their legal claims, leaving some of them more than $1 million short of the compensation they were entitled to. "It is alleged that Waller Legal settled claims for substantially less than what the claims were worth, on the basis that a category of compensation (economic loss) was not properly sought," said a summary of the proceeding. "The claim in this proceeding alleges that Waller Legal were negligent and were in breach of contract."

>>20334237 Video: Malka Leifer's Survivor Dassi Erlich Speaks Out - Dassi Erlich doesn't remember ever not being scared as a child, and now that her abuser, former school principal Malka Leifer, is behind bars and she has escaped a secretive religious sect, Dassi is excited about what the future holds for her. - The Project

>>20339632 Paedophile and ex-Sunshine Coast water polo coach Dean Carelse found working as children's lifeguard at UK family resort Butlin's - A paedophile former water polo coach convicted of grooming and possession of child exploitation material offences in Queensland has been working as a children's lifeguard in the UK, after Australian police did not share evidence of international victims. An ABC investigation has traced the former Sunshine Coast teacher and coach, Dean Carelse, to Butlin's Minehead Resort, a family holiday park in south-west England, where he has worked since early last year. A UK background check of the 43-year-old failed to pick up his convictions, which include grooming a 13-year-old boy for sex and 14 counts of indecent treatment of a child under 16 while he was a teacher and coach at a private Sunshine Coast school in the late 2010s.

>>20339659 Dassi Erlich: In her own words - "Having watched Dassi Erlich in the media over many years as she pursued justice against her abuser Malka Leifer, who fled to Israel in 2008 and was extradited back to Australia in 2021, many may have felt that they already knew a lot about her. But in her raw and revealing memoir In Bad Faith, Dassi shares the true story behind her stoic image. She recounts the abuse she endured as a child at the hands of her parents, the abuse she suffered by former Adass Israel School principal Malka Leifer, and ways in which the abuse affected her mental health and her ability to be the mother she always wanted to be." - Sharyn Kolieb - australianjewishnews.com

>>20344883 MEMOIR: In Bad Faith by Dassi Erlich with Ellen Whinnett - The sisters who found the courage to take down sex abuser Malka Leifer - "In Bad Faith is shocking to read because of the beautiful emotional intimacy in Dassi Erlich’s voice but also because of a rarer, geographical shock: this was happening next door. That this goes on in ordinary houses and attractive streets is extremely difficult to process. How was it possible for so many people to look away? What is remarkable about Erlich and two of her sisters is that somewhere they found the courage to confront what was going on, in their own lives and in other lives. The book tells what happened when Erlich decided to speak out, when the community supported the appalling Leifer and flew her secretly to Israel where they maintained her for years until staunch, outraged people in Melbourne and across the world refused to back down and managed to bring her here to face justice." - Helen Elliott - smh.com.au

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80104e No.20545699

#34 - Part 52

Child Sexual Abuse, Pedophilia, Human Trafficking and Satanism Investigations - Part 6

>>20350037 Review: In Bad Faith - Dassi Erlich with Ellen Whinnett - "In 2014, when Malka Leifer was first arrested, Australian authorities had a reasonable expectation she would soon be extradited to face trial. Instead, she was released from custody, feigning a mental illness that had turned her into a zombie-like state. There is a certain irony in a perpetrator masquerading as being mentally ill, after inflicting enduring pain on the minds of her victims. The book details the behaviour of Israeli medical, legal and political figures in their efforts to prevent Leifer from facing trial. Medical reports were falsified, the Israeli minister for health was implicated in corruption of due process. Leifer was one of their own. This is a very self-aware memoir: Erlich and her sisters know they need to take control of their own narrative. They’ve worked with local and international media to ensure their story, of abuse and the protection of the guilty, is fully exposed. In Bad Faith is itself a part of this process of shaping the narrative, not the least because a draft of the manuscript became a document in the criminal trial. Dassi Erlich gives due credit to both her editor Ellen Whinnett, who is rightly credited as a co-author, and to the many others who helped her find her words. But this is her book, and one to be proud of." - Joanna Mendelssohn - theconversation.com

>>20354749 Australian-first historical forced adoption redress scheme opens in Victoria - When Jude Hudson gave birth in 1969, her daughter was whisked away before she even saw her face. Fifty-five years later, Mrs Hudson will be among the first to apply to a newly opened, Australian-first redress scheme, providing compensation and support to women who were separated from their children by forced adoption practices. The Victorian government expects more than 3,000 women who were separated from their infants at birth to apply for the $138 million Historical Forced Adoptions Redress Scheme. It offers a one-off payment of $30,000, access to counselling and psychological support, and an individual apology process.

>>20365380 'Sadistic' zoologist Adam Britton remains behind bars as sentencing for bestiality, child abuse material charges delayed again - While Adam Britton publicly marketed himself as a crocodile expert and wildlife specialist, working with David Attenborough and running a podcast, the zoologist was hiding behind anonymous online profiles, uploading pictures and videos of himself torturing and murdering dozens of animals. But hidden near his rural Darwin home was a shipping container he dubbed his own personal "torture room", where he murdered and sexually exploited dozens of dogs, including puppies. Britton routinely filmed himself torturing and sexually exploiting the animals, uploading the footage to the internet. While the videos did not usually identify him or his location, a bright City of Darwin dog leash in the background of one of the clips triggered the unravelling of his secret double life. Britton was arrested on April 22, 2022, and has been on remand in jail since. Britton pleaded guilty to around 60 charges last September, and both his lawyer and the prosecution were scheduled to make submissions to the court about what his sentence should be in December. That hearing was delayed and re-scheduled to take place on Tuesday. However, his lawyers have requested more time to examine a psychiatric report they received on Friday last week, and for prosecutors to seek their own psychiatric report in response.

>>20377117 Video: Premier apologises to Victorians put in orphanages for ‘beatings and brutalities’ - Premier Jacinta Allan fought back tears during a rare joint sitting of parliament on Thursday to mark a historic apology to children who were neglected or abused while in institutional care, as she announced redress payments for extremely ill victim-survivors will go out this year. During the speech, the premier paid tribute to the strength and resilience of those separated from their families and revealed that her own great-grandmother and aunt were among the tens of thousands of Victorians placed in state, religious or charity-run orphanages last century. “There are countless ways to harm a child and all of them leave a mark,” Allan said as more than 100 victim-survivors watched from the public gallery and nearby Queen’s Hall. “We apologise that instead of reading, writing and arithmetic many instead learnt of floggings, beatings and brutalities. For the physical scars you bear to this day, we say sorry. We also recognise that many of you bear the emotional scars. We apologise that the burden of your experience often carries on in your relationships with your children and grandchildren.”

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80104e No.20545702

#34 - Part 53

Child Sexual Abuse, Pedophilia, Human Trafficking and Satanism Investigations - Part 7

>>20377139 ‘A long time coming’: Victoria’s apology to care leavers offers hope for a reckoning - John Ellis is one of an estimated 90,000 Victorians who experienced various forms of abuse and deprivation while under state care between 1928 and 1990. On Thursday the premier, Jacinta Allan, will make a formal apology to those Victorians, known as care leavers or forgotten Australians. John, now 84, is too unwell to travel to Melbourne for the premier’s apology but his wife Maureen will be there in his place. “It’s a long time coming and we’ve lost a lot of people along the way, but I am glad I will get to be there to represent him,” she says.

>>20377153 Police raid former Bishop of Broome's home for second time over child sexual abuse allegations - Police investigators from the Child Abuse Squad are again searching the home of the former Bishop of Broome Christopher Saunders. WA Police last month confirmed they had restarted their investigation into sexual abuse allegations against the veteran cleric. Bishop Saunders has denied any wrongdoing. Half a dozen police officers are again scouring the Broome property, which is owned by the Catholic Church. WA Police said child abuse detectives were in Broome investigating historic child sex offences. It is the second time in a month the specialised police unit has flown from Perth to interview locals and search the home on Piggott Way.

>>20383245 Catholic Church loses fight to block legal action from abuse victims’ loved ones - Melbourne’s Catholic church has lost a major legal fight to block the parents, siblings, friends and families of abuse victims from suing for damages. In a landmark decision legal experts have warned will “open the floodgates” for psychological injury claims in Victoria, the High Court on Thursday refused the Catholic Archdiocese of Melbourne leave to appeal a Supreme Court ruling enabling “secondary” victims from seeking damages. It also clears the way for a claim brought by the father of a dead former choirboy who claims his son was assaulted by Cardinal George Pell. He is seeking damages for mental harm suffered as a result of being informed of the alleged abuse of his late son and by reason of his son’s death. Pell was convicted, then acquitted, of abusing the choirboy, who cannot be identified. The former choirboy died of a heroin overdose in 2014 having never disclosed allegations of abuse to his parents or authorities.

>>20383267 George Pell’s final gift to priests, family and friends - George Pell left hundreds of thousands dollars in cash and shares to a small number of priests, family members, close friends and religious institutions in a will signed two months after it emerged he was under police investigation for child sexual abuse. NSW Supreme Court documents reveal the former Archbishop of Melbourne and Sydney who went on to become one of the world’s most senior Catholic leaders before his death last year bequeathed at least $255,000 in the will dated April 28, 2016.

>>20422881 ‘Unfettered and direct access’: Massive penalty for Tasmanian Anglican church that protected pedophile - A man who was sexually abused by disgraced Anglican priest Louis Victor Daniels in the 1980s has been awarded a $2.39 million payout from the church’s coffers. The decision, handed down by the Supreme Court of Tasmania comes after a lengthy civil trial waged by the victim-survivor against the Tasmanian Anglican Church last year. It was the first time the Anglican Diocese of Tasmania had gone to trial since it was established in the 1840s. The now-defrocked Daniels, who was a prominent leader of the Church of England Boys’ Society (CEBS) in Tasmania between the 1960s and 1980s, is a prolific and notorious pedophile who has been jailed multiple times over the sexual abuse of more than a dozen boys. He is currently behind bars. While the church did not deny Daniels sexually abused the victim-survivor, it said it should not be held vicariously liable, and that a deed of release the man signed in 1994 should still stand. During the trial, the victim-survivor said that agreement was a “deal with the devil” - a $34,000 payout sum from the priest in return for his silence - and to protect Daniels, CEBS, the church and then Anglican Bishop Philip Newell from any liability. He argued the deed of release was unconscionable and should be overturned.

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80104e No.20545704

#34 - Part 54

Child Sexual Abuse, Pedophilia, Human Trafficking and Satanism Investigations - Part 8

>>20427207 Video: After School Satan Club to hold first meeting at Memphis school - The controversial After School Satan Club is set to host its first meeting at Chimneyrock Elementary School on Wednesday. Legally there’s nothing anyone can do about it. But pastors from several churches will meet at the Briarwood Community Church on Tuesday evening to discuss their options on taking a stand against the new after-school club at Chimneyrock Elementary School. “I was outraged that they would attack the young minds, the children with what they believe,” said Dr. Frederick Tappan, with Eureka True Vine Baptist church.

>>20427235 Video: Launch of ‘After School Satan Club’ draws protest at Chimneyrock Elementary - The launch of the “After School Satan Club” at Chimneyrock Elementary in Cordova drew dozens to protest Wednesday. After the club’s launch Wednesday, the Satanic Temple told Action News 5, “The kiddos had a great time.” The “After School Satan Club” has active clubs in California, Ohio, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania. This is the first in Tennessee. “There is no reason that Memphis should have ever allowed an After School Satan Club to come in,” said protestor Samantha Hardmon. “It’s time to revise policy and it’s time for parents to get on their post to pray and protect their kids.” It’s the Satanic Temple’s fifth active club in the country.

>>20427261 Citizens Gather In Protest Of After School Satan Club At Tennessee Elementary School - This month, community members gathered outside of Chimneyrock Elementary School in Cordova, Tennessee, to protest during a meeting of the Satanic Temple’s After School Satan Club (ASSC). The Satanic Temple currently maintains active after school clubs in California, Ohio, Connecticut, Pennsylvania and now Tennessee. Campaign director for the Satanic Temple’s ASSC, June Everett, previously told The Tennessee Conservative that the club “only goes where it has been invited” and that the ASSC was actually requested by a Chimneyrock parent. According to Everett, the ASSC received over 14 permission slips from parents and many of those students plan to attend future meetings. This ASSC meeting on Wednesday, January 10th, was the first of its kind to occur in the State of Tennessee.

>>20427291 Tennessee after-school Satan club holds first meeting despite protests - Children had a “great time” at the first meeting of an after-school Satan club at a Tennessee elementary school this week, organizers said, despite dozens of protesters who condemned the meeting. On Wednesday, the After School Satan Club (ASSC), a federally recognized non-profit organization and national after-school program, held its first meeting at Chimneyrock elementary school in Memphis. A club flyer said that the Satanic Temple was a non-theistic religion that views Satan as “a literary figure who represents a metaphorical construct of rejecting tyranny and championing the human mind and spirit”. “After School Satan Club does not attempt to convert children to any religious ideology. Instead, the Satanic Temple supports children to think for themselves. All After School Satan Clubs … emphasize a scientific, rationalist, non-superstitious world view,” it added. Activities promoted by the club include science projects, community service projects, puzzles and games, nature activities, arts and crafts and snacks, the flyer said.

>>20427421 Video: What is the ‘After-School Satan Club,’ and what is it doing in San Clemente? - There’s a new after-school program at Truman Benedict Elementary in San Clemente, and it’s caused quite a ruckus among parents, particularly on social media. The “After-School Satan Club,” run by the Satanic Temple, has its first meeting at Truman Benedict scheduled for Feb. 12. Despite what the name suggests, the club’s goal is to provide students with a “fun, intellectually stimulating and non-proselytizing alternative to current religious after-school clubs being offered in our public schools,” according to its brochure. The meetings are designed to promote “intellectual and emotional development in accordance with the Satanic Temple,” the brochure says, and no religious instruction will take place. The Satanic Temple is a non-theistic organization founded in 2013 that embraces Satan as a symbol rather than as a deity. Its use of satanic imagery doesn’t involve the worship of a literal Satan or hell; instead, it serves as a tool to express its philosophical and political beliefs, according to its website.

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80104e No.20545707

#34 - Part 55

Child Sexual Abuse, Pedophilia, Human Trafficking and Satanism Investigations - Part 9

>>20427574 After School Satan Club is coming to Orange County. It’s not what you think, organizers say - Usually, word of a new after-school program giving elementary school students a chance to explore art, science and technology would hardly make a ripple. But when it comes to a new club preparing to launch in San Clemente, supporters and critics alike seem to agree: the devil’s in the details. Next month, Truman Benedict Elementary School will play host to the After School Satan Club - only the second such group organized by the Satanic Temple in California. The club, which will have its first meeting on Feb. 12, is being promoted with a brochure that features a cartoon devil and a section titled, “Educatin’ with Satan.” Representatives from the Satanic Temple - which doesn’t actually practice devil worship, despite its name — say a Truman Benedict parent asked them to bring the program to campus after their child was handed a permission slip to a Christian-focused after-school club, which did not align with their values. “I look at us like vampires: We only go where we’re invited to,” said June Everett, the After School Satan Club’s campaign director.

>>20427631 California Elementary Welcomes After-School Satan Club: ‘Educatin’ With Satan’ - A California elementary school will be offering a new after-school program sponsored by the Satanic Temple, a choice that not everyone in the area is thrilled about, according to local reports. The Satanic Temple - a nontheistic religious organization designed to "preserve and advance secularism and individual liberties" rather than worship the devil — is hosting an After School Satan Club at the Truman Benedict Elementary School in San Clemente next month. The decision to bring the program to the elementary school was made at a parent's request after the parent's child was given a permission slip to attend a Christian-focused after-school club, the Los Angeles Times reported. “I look at us like vampires: We only go where we’re invited to,” June Everett, the After School Satan Club’s campaign director, told the outlet. The Satanic Temple views Satan as a literary figure rather than a deity or supernatural figure, according to its website.

>>20427669 Video: Satan Club at Orange County elementary school stirs controversy - A group called the After School Satan Club is putting down roots in conservative San Clemente. Its meeting spot is Truman Benedict Elementary School, which has many people concerned. "This is a public school in a public venue," San Clemente resident David Harper said. "Why call it a Satan Club if it isn't something to do with Satan? Is that some kind of attraction or what?"

>>20427816 Video: After School Satan Club returns to Jane Addams Elementary School - The After School Satan Club in the Moline-Coal Valley School District will be returning for a third year to Jane Addams Elementary School. In a Facebook post from The Satanic Temple the organization said: “In October, the Moline-Coal Valley School District prohibited the ASSC from operating on campus, citing a hoax threat made in early 2023, which they attributed to the presence of our club. Rather than allowing our club to operate alongside other religious clubs on campus this year, the district offered an alternative location several miles away. After receiving strongly worded letters from the legal team at Americans United for Separation of Church and State and hearing from The Satanic Temple Iowa and The Satanic Temple Illinois congregation members at a recent board meeting, the district responded in a letter stating, ‘In the interests of avoiding litigation, the board has determined that the ASSC may meet at the Jane Addams Elementary School as requested,’” the Facebook post concluded.

>>20427880 Video: The Satanic Temple Planning More After School Clubs in Response to Good News Clubs - The Satanic Temple (TST) is upsetting parents again as it plans to open two new after-school clubs this year, targeting schools where the Good News Clubs are already established. In Memphis, Tennessee, controversy arose following the announcement by TST of its intention to start an after-school club for children aged from kindergarten through the 5th grade at a local school. June Everett, a minister at the Satanic Ministry and campaign director for the After School Satan Club, emphasized that the club's activities are benign. "We're not sacrificing children or killing baby goats," Everett said in a video posted on the social media platform X. The club intends to teach children about nature and science, portraying Satan as a symbol of kindness and sharing.

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80104e No.20545709

#34 - Part 56

Child Sexual Abuse, Pedophilia, Human Trafficking and Satanism Investigations - Part 10

>>20428039 'Hail the eternal rebel!' Satanist gives opening prayer at county meeting in Reno as furious commissioner storms out in protest - A prominent Satanist has given the opening prayer at a Nevada county commission meeting - sparking outrage among the members. The address at the Washoe County Commission meeting on Tuesday ended not with an 'Amen', but a 'Hail, Satan.' It was delivered by Reno Satanic's Jason Miller and caused one board member to storm out in protest. 'The New Age is dawning that these decisions will play a role in,' said Miller at a point during his relatively brief spiel, which began with a bit of Latin that included references to Satan and Lucifer. 'For our liberation, for here and now is our day of joy, here and now is our opportunity,' he continued. 'May we seize this glorious day and its enchanting nights to celebrate the wonders of the natural world, as we are all part of its boundless mysteries. 'Hail, Satan,' he eventually declared.

>>20428048 Q Post #3967 - These people are pure evil. This is not about politics. You are ready. Q - https://qanon.pub/#3967

>>20428608 Video: Tasmania's Anglican Church ordered to pay $2.4 million for abuse in landmark case - John Steen says he feels "very sorry" for his 16-year-old self. Mr Steen, now 53, was sexually abused by Tasmanian paedophile priest Louis Victor Daniels on multiple occasions in the 1980s when he was aged between 10 and 16. In 1987, he disclosed the abuse to then-bishop Philip Newell, and in 1994, the church was again made aware of the allegations. "The whole story's almost all of my life," Mr Steen said. "As a 16-year-old, I did my best to try to get Daniels removed from positions where he could assault other children. That didn't happen. Again, I tried in 1994, when I was 23, to get justice this time through civil action. That didn't work very well. There was a [$34,000] settlement [paid by Daniels] and I was shut down by a legal agreement." About 10 years ago, Mr Steen told his story to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, which he was able to do without breaking the 1994 agreement. Through the commission's work, Mr Steen learnt more about what went on behind the scenes after he made disclosures in 1987 to Bishop Newell, and again in 1994 when another bishop, Ronald Stone, was notified. Mr Steen continued his fight, which has culminated in a civil court case against the Anglican Church in Tasmania. Tasmanian Supreme Court judge Michael Brett handed down his decision in the case on Thursday, describing the abuse of Mr Steen as "serious and damaging" and ordered the church pay almost $2.4 million in damages to him.

>>20455870 Hundreds of men snared as global paedophile video ring unearthed in Sydney - NSW Police have unearthed an international paedophile ring in which hundreds of men around the world filmed each other watching child abuse material, and they have arrested nine alleged participants from NSW. In March 2023, the child exploitation internet unit formed Strike Force Packer to investigate a child abuse ring whose members were allegedly hosting and joining video conferences to share child abuse videos. The NSW online child abuse detectives soon discovered the syndicate’s tentacles spread across Australia - and the world - with hundreds of users in Europe, Asia and the US. Detective Superintendent Jayne Doherty told this masthead the investigation found “hundreds of people” with a common motive were taking part in the viewing sessions and even exposing themselves during the events.

>>20455876 Former Broome bishop Christopher Saunders charged over historical sex offences - The former bishop of Broome has been charged with multiple historical sex offences, less than six months after a special church-commissioned investigation found he had sexually assaulted and groomed numerous Aboriginal men and boys. Christopher Saunders was arrested in Broome on Wednesday night, with WA Police on Thursday morning confirming that he had been charged with two counts of sexual penetration without consent, 14 charges of unlawful and indecent assault, and three counts of person in authority indecently dealing with a child between the ages of 16 to 18.

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80104e No.20545711

#34 - Part 57

Child Sexual Abuse, Pedophilia, Human Trafficking and Satanism Investigations - Part 11

>>20455914 Video: Former bishop of Broome Christopher Saunders charged over historical sexual abuse allegations - The former bishop of Broome Christopher Saunders has been charged with a number of historical child sexual abuse offences following a 7NEWS investigation. The 74-year-old senior Catholic cleric was arrested at his home in Western Australia by detectives from the child sexual abuse squad. Saunders was led out of the property by detectives and taken to the Broome police complex about 6pm on Wednesday. He has now been charged with two counts of sexual penetration without consent, 14 counts of unlawful and indecent assault, and three counts of person in authority indecently dealing with a child (16-18 years old).

>>20455917 Christopher Saunders: Former Bishop of Broome charged with rape in Australia - Australian bishop Christopher Saunders has been charged with rape and a string of historical sex offences - some against children. The 74-year-old was arrested in Broome on Wednesday, after parallel investigations ordered by Western Australian police and the Pope. He is one of the most senior Catholic clerics to face charges of this nature. Mr Saunders is accused of two counts of rape, 14 counts of unlawful and indecent assault, and three counts of indecently dealing with a child as a person in authority. The alleged offending occurred in the remote Western Australian towns of Broome, Kununurra and the Aboriginal community of Kalumburu between 2008 and 2014. - Tiffanie Turnbull - bbc.com

>>20455925 Former Australian bishop charged with historical sex offenses - A senior Australian Catholic clergyman has been charged with historical sex offenses allegedly committed while he was serving as the bishop of Broome, a remote diocese in Western Australia. Emeritus Bishop Christopher Saunders was arrested on Wednesday at his home in Broome, where he became bishop in 1996, according to CNN affiliate Seven News. Police did not name Saunders in a statement, which said a 74-year-old man had been charged with two counts of sexual penetration without consent, more than a dozen unlawful and indecent assault charges, and three counts of indecently dealing with a child age 16 to 18. - Hilary Whiteman - cnn.com

>>20455930 ACBC president pledges full cooperation after Bishop Christopher Saunders arrest - Australian Catholic Bishops Conference president Archbishop Timothy Costelloe SDB has said the investigation into allegations against the former Bishop of Broome Christopher Saunders is “right and proper, and indeed necessary” after he was arrested by Western Australian police over nearly 20 charges of historical sexual abuse. Police launched their second investigation into Bishop Saunders after the church provided a Vatican report detailing its own Vos Estis Lux Mundi investigation last September. “Allegations against the former Bishop of Broome, Christopher Saunders are very serious and deeply distressing, especially for those making those allegations,” said Archbishop Costelloe. “It is right and proper, and indeed necessary, that all such allegations be thoroughly investigated. The Church will continue to cooperate fully with the police and take every necessary step to avoid any actions which may compromise the integrity and autonomy of the police investigation.”

>>20455946 Former Broome Bishop Christopher Saunders indicates he will plead not guilty to 19 criminal charges - One of Australia's longest serving senior Catholic clerics, Christopher Alan Saunders, has indicated he will plead not guilty to 19 criminal offences after being arrested at his WA home. The former Bishop of Broome is facing 14 counts of unlawful and indecent assault, two counts of sexual penetration without consent, and three counts of being a person in authority indecently dealing with a child. The charges were read out to Mr Saunders in the Broome Magistrates Court on Thursday. In court, the 74-year-old's lawyer indicated the former Bishop would enter pleas of not guilty. He's been released on bail on a $10,000 bond and will appear in court in June and must reside at his home in the northern WA town.

>>20455946 Q Post #2894 - Many more to come? Dark to LIGHT. Q

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80104e No.20545712

#34 - Part 58

Child Sexual Abuse, Pedophilia, Human Trafficking and Satanism Investigations - Part 12

>>20461487 ‘Dystopian dragnets’: Apple’s warns proposed online safety standards could turn private companies into ‘arms of the state’ - Apple has warned the eSafety Commissioner’s proposed standards to tackle online child abuse threatens to turn private companies into “arms of the state” and create “dystopian dragnets”. The $US2.8 trillion tech titan says child exploitation is “abhorrent”. But believes online safety can be strengthened without introducing new standards which would compel tech companies to screen and hand customer data over to government agencies without a warrant or court order. “Forcing providers to comb through the private storage and communications of all its users, without any particularity, reason for suspicion, or other constraint, improperly turns private companies into arms of the state and would up-end the trusted relationship between a provider and its users,” Apple said in its submission about the new standards.

>>20488608 Video: Horror stories of multiple paedophiles at Beaumaris Primary barely scratch surface of statewide crisis, survivors say - One survivor has called it "mind-boggling" and "beyond belief". A lawyer for victims says it was "calculated" and "covered up, just like in the Catholic Church". And on Monday, a small but important step was taken in addressing the Victorian Department of Education's historical child sexual abuse crisis. After six months examining decades of crimes against students in state-run schools, the government-initiated inquiry leading the investigation delivered its findings to the Victorian governor. The government has not said when it will make the report and its response public. Although the inquiry has uncovered shocking evidence during public hearings that the Victorian Education Department knowingly shuffled paedophile teachers around the state and endangered children, its scope was limited to a cluster of offenders who taught at Beaumaris Primary School in Melbourne's bayside south-east. Active civil claims and convictions suggest that more than 100 government schools may be affected.

>>20514498 Former student of Saint Ignatius College settles $750,000 lawsuit over alleged sexual abuse by pedophile Stephen Hamra - A top private school knew a teacher was suspected of child abuse but did not fire him - nor warn the SANFL club for whom he billeted country junior players – before he raped a student, court documents allege. The Advertiser can reveal a former St Ignatius College student has confidentially settled his $795,000 lawsuit over alleged abuse by former teacher and convicted sex offender Stephen Hamra. The student alleged Hamra grabbed his arm, bent it behind his back and raped him in 2001, then threatened to have him expelled if he reported the assault. He also accused the Jesuit school’s then principal -- Greg O’Kelly, who went on to become a Catholic bishop – of negligence, alleging he had known Hamra was “under a cloud” of suspected child abuse since 1995.

>>20525232 Victorian child sexual abuse schools inquiry finds teacher linked to abuse of 60 individuals - A Victorian inquiry into child sexual abuse in state-run schools has found notorious paedophile teacher Darrell Ray was linked to the abuse of 60 children. The board of inquiry recommended the state government formally apologise to victims and construct a memorial at the school at the centre of the abuse. It examined child sexual abuse at Beaumaris Primary School in Melbourne's south-east and 23 other state-run schools from 1960 to 1999. The inquiry delivered its findings at the end of February and the report has now been tabled in parliament. Among its nine recommendations are that the government issue a statewide apology, delivered in parliament, in the presence of victims of abuse, specifically addressing the abuse at Beaumaris Primary School. It also calls on the government to work with victim-survivors to construct a memorial at Beaumaris Primary School to acknowledge historical child sexual abuse in government schools.

>>20525255 Dassi Erlich on life since she and her sisters fought and won their case against abuser Malka Leifer - For nine weeks Dassi Erlich sat in a Melbourne courtroom wondering anxiously if the truth would prevail. Then, on April 3, 2023, in a moment she describes as "absolutely terrifying", the Victorian County Court jury finally handed down its verdict in the sexual abuse case against former Melbourne principal Malka Leifer. It delivered Ms Erlich and her two sisters the justice they'd spent decades fighting for. Leifer, the principal of the Adass Israel School the sisters attended, was convicted of rape and other offences, and in August last year was sentenced to 15 years' imprisonment.

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80104e No.20545714

File: be56f4ab657c907⋯.jpg (70.28 KB,400x400,1:1,OZ_Pepe.jpg)

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Q Research AUSTRALIA #21 ————————————–——– https://www.fullchan.net/?f3e5147be1f24a93#EU7fzrYUAGH8AQjwSBjAiDW6N6hEvBUHwCuQLErQ4DZG

Q Research AUSTRALIA #20 ————————————–——– https://www.fullchan.net/?e3d6db98106b3818#B6AccFcHA5NRHHS95tmaAXmmPGCzVfsTiP97ajqEw9TQ

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Q Research AUSTRALIA #13 ————————————–——– https://www.fullchan.net/?23bca40c926aba6f#HRpUEDMCC5V2N9tUuWgB4E4SwBZEgvy83VTLraV5d3aA

Q Research AUSTRALIA #12 ————————————–——– https://www.fullchan.net/?ff30959a0fc084b4#tPxJutgekaNmxXyBd7eaZtRoQKtUGq3Hdass3XAPcAr

Q Research AUSTRALIA #11 ————————————–——– https://www.fullchan.net/?805b43725f4dcb6f#5zkLzFREbjwaRxZWnRKnbW6kGHqNvQsKr7d3sHtZ1BKn

Q Research AUSTRALIA #10 ————————————–——– https://www.fullchan.net/?a5af0da9323f548d#AAotyVQzjXDDdoKX31pyoDsTMQYAxHgPyYkG1RSmn1JP

Q Research AUSTRALIA #9 ————————————––——– https://www.fullchan.net/?11b52e36c14bb39d#4NKLrpyx7Q5vPSgJZJtAUCttLTP1DjWTUyDnrAcb8N44

Q Research AUSTRALIA #8 ————————————––——– https://www.fullchan.net/?85edab1deeb1d12c#GQfdH63jqL2J55iVSUQRsM5MPHaDh33pzR4cd7zjQ3V1

Q Research AUSTRALIA #7 ————————————––——– https://www.fullchan.net/?5c29ce048d4fb1ce#AP9hdf71bxUxfwSDzgW6zRd9ShYLLvbw8JsJHfm3MMrw

Q Research AUSTRALIA #6 ————————————––——– https://www.fullchan.net/?73c7e014d9df27a3#5dbcp5j7is3o1r8RYEGajfkNhyASV2AtHiaP7SSQxVU7

Q Research AUSTRALIA #5 ————————————––——– https://www.fullchan.net/?3799d676ec6e18db#3NCMbLqhpxHHgcntL6qb1wSWYTFzCc3FwbXJM8GFDe52

Q Research AUSTRALIA #4 ————————————––——– https://www.fullchan.net/?3d28c742d3fe5871#3UUBL8DhrqjqUoKavJQJgVC4MoGmQQJWPZWRPEESqAVK

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Q Research AUSTRALIA #2 ————————————––——– https://www.fullchan.net/?02614aa8f500afdf#3fZScpipRo4n1v4p1SH1pZFfUNsLRTaRH27cftK6x27r

Q Research AUSTRALIA #1 ————————————––——– https://www.fullchan.net/?a5bb8e68d664b41d#87bxuF28SfZRhs1zcMoTvAk7u1eNnomq251Tf2QdTaFC

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80104e No.20545717

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80104e No.20545723

File: fc03f2897a3cf42⋯.jpg (3.11 MB,2800x2000,7:5,Chairman_of_the_Joint_Chie….jpg)



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80104e No.20545757

File: c4b16467a6d99c3⋯.jpg (1 MB,2965x1815,593:363,The_alternative_is_awful_b….jpg)

OPINION: The alternative is awful, but not even conservatives should back Trump

George Brandis, Former high commissioner to the UK and federal attorney-general - March 10, 2024


After Soviet tanks crushed the Prague Spring in 1968 – the attempt by Czechoslovakian prime minister Alexander Dubcek to introduce a more “liberal” type of communism – the socialist world was deeply split.

Some of the hard-line communists who remained steadfast with Moscow dusted off an old slogan, the origins of which are traceable to the French Revolution: “No enemies on the left.” In the teleology of the left, notwithstanding differences about ideology and tactics, ultimately all socialists were on was the same side in the greater struggle.

In recent years, we have seen a strikingly similar phenomenon emerge among elements of the right. Its most obvious current manifestation appears in attitudes to Donald Trump in the United States.

With Trump now the presumptive Republican nominee, comfortably ahead of Democrat President Joe Biden in almost all the battleground states, many on the right are anticipating a second Trump presidency with unabated glee.

Trump has long had a following among elements of the right in Australia, some of whose high-profile identities, such as Gina Rinehart, attended the Conservative Political Action Committee (CPAC) conference in the US state of Maryland last month.

In years gone by, CPAC was a gathering of orthodox conservatives; it has now become a jamboree of MAGA Republicans. As the presidential election nears, we will see more Australian conservatives jumping on the Trump bandwagon. Elsewhere, this has begun to happen: recently, Boris Johnson endorsed him.

Politics is binary. Ultimately, one has to pick a side. For many, especially political activists, it is also tribal. For people on the conservative side of politics, even those with deep misgivings about Trump, the instinct is to stick with the tribe.

But sometimes, it is not enough to embrace a candidate for no better reason than the alternative is awful. Mimicking the old left by adopting the posture of “No enemies on the right” demands a complete abdication of critical and moral judgment.

Much of Trump’s appeal can be explained by the fact that the modern American left has become so ghastly. Weaponised by social media, political correctness and identity politics have evolved from niche attitudes into powerful vehicles for censorship, moral bullying and intimidation. Anyone who does not conform to social values deemed acceptable is marginalised and “cancelled”.

The ghost of George Orwell haunts the country’s college campuses, as prestigious American universities have degenerated from havens for free thinking to licensors of orthodoxy.

No wonder that Trump, as the left’s most despised hate-figure, is a hero not just to his evangelists, but has remained popular with so much of middle America. On other familiar conservative causes, too, including abortion, gun ownership, border control and taxation, Trump is an effective champion.

But Trump is not a conservative. A right-wing demagogue he may be. The most scornful and effective scourge of the condescending and censorious liberal elite, he surely is. But that alone is no excuse for conservatives to turn a blind eye to the threat Trump poses to values which they have always considered sacrosanct.

Those values include respect for constitutional government. A failed candidate who stubbornly refused to accept the outcome of an election, encouraged his supporters to disrupt the proceedings of Congress to prevent the result being declared, and propagated without a shred of evidence the fantasy that the election had been stolen, is no conservative.


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80104e No.20545766

File: ed821112653e70b⋯.jpg (836.45 KB,3318x2212,3:2,A_right_wing_demagogue_Tru….jpg)



Nor is a person who is openly defiant of both the criminal and civil law, and seeks, in a similarly mendacious way, to discredit the US justice system as a political conspiracy against him. (Perhaps the motivation of some of the prosecuting authorities may be questionable. But all of them?) Nor is someone who openly countenances a “revenge presidency”, with all the abuse of executive power that threatens, a person conservatives should find acceptable.

It is, however, in foreign policy that Trump is most radically at variance with the honourable traditions of American conservatism. (Not for nothing did Biden, in his State of the Union speech, evoke the memory of Ronald Reagan.)

Trump’s insouciant remarks about encouraging Russian aggression against NATO (of which America is the principal security guarantor); his refusal to criticise the killing of Alexei Navalny; his indulgent attitude to Vladimir Putin; the near certainty that, if elected, Trump would pull the rug from under Volodymyr Zelensky, and thus retrospectively endorse the worst violation of international law since World War II, are the most dangerous, and revealing, telltale signs about Trump.

Yet, he is merely channelling what the Republican Party has become, some of whose loopier members buy Putin’s line about the decadence of the West, and seem to prefer his style of authoritarian government to Western liberal democracy.

In a thoughtful contribution to The Spectator last week, Tony Abbott expressed his alarm at how many Trump Republicans seem mesmerised by admiration for Putin, whom he rightly described as “pretty close to evil”.

No enemies on the right? For principled conservatives, who believe in constitutional government, liberal democracy, respect for the rule of law, and a foreign policy which stands up to aggressors and autocrats, there certainly can be. Those enemies include the demagogues who threaten those values. Donald Trump is one of them.

George Brandis is a former high commissioner to the UK, and a former Liberal senator and federal attorney-general.


>These people are stupid.

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80104e No.20550335

File: 13c401f08d61e1a⋯.jpg (175.85 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Executive_Council_of_Austr….jpg)

File: 39da29f9be7c06d⋯.jpg (762.54 KB,2048x2731,2048:2731,Anthony_Albanese_in_Tasman….jpg)

Jewish leaders back US’s ‘floating pier’ Gaza aid plan, amid calls to fund UNRWA


Executive Council of Australian Jewry co-chief executive Peter Wertheim has urged Labor to support the United States’ plan to build a “temporary floating pier” in Gaza to deliver aid, rather than restore funding to the UN’s aid agency.

Mr Wertheim said the Jewish community supported the provision of aid to civilians in Gaza who were in desperate need but remained “totally opposed” to using the United Nations Relief and Works Agency to deliver that aid.

The call comes after Anthony Albanese signalled on Monday that Labor was considering alternative routes to funnel humanitarian aid into Gaza “through other forms” than UNRWA, saying that he was “giving consideration to the range of support”.

“The consequences of the action that’s taken place there should not impact on innocent civilians the way that it has,” he told ABC Radio Canberra. “We’ve been very clear about that.

“And we continue to call for not just humanitarian support, and we’re giving consideration to the range of support that can be given, including through other forms as well, in terms of essential food and lifesaving delivery there.”

The Prime Minister’s remarks come amid mounting pressure to reverse a pause in funding to UNRWA, which was announced following allegations some of its staff played a role in the October 7 attack, with Canada and Sweden announcing it was restoring its support.

Mr Wertheim said it would be “irresponsible” to waste taxpayers’ money supporting the UN agency, arguing that instead Australia could bolster the US effort to “establish a temporary floating pier in Gaza to deliver aid supplies to civilians in Gaza directly, and bypass UNRWA”.

“It has been demonstrated that UNRWA employees, including schoolteachers, participated in the Hamas massacre of October 7 and many others have collaborated with Hamas in other ways,” he said.

“UNRWA is so intimately connected to Hamas that no level of external control has been able to prevent large quantities of aid from being commandeered by Hamas at the expense of Gazan civilians.

“The vast resources that have been squandered in constructing Hamas’s extensive labyrinth of tunnels, much of which has now been destroyed, are testament to that.”

Opposition foreign affairs spokesman James Paterson said the government should only restore funding to UNRWA when it was “confident that there is no risk of any of that funding finding its way to Hamas”.

Senator Paterson urged Labor to wait until an investigation into UNRWA had been completed to ensure Australian money was not being “misspent”.

“The major obstacle to get aid into Gaza is not funding for UNRWA. It is the physical obstacles and operational obstacles to getting the aid in. Of course, more aid would always be welcome,” he told ABC Radio National.

“But the main obstacles are not the amount of aid, but the access of that aid into Gaza and particularly the distribution of the aid within Gaza, which is very challenging operationally.”


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80104e No.20550344

File: 8eaddf9a76382b9⋯.jpg (249.88 KB,1280x720,16:9,The_Vietnam_memorial_in_Ca….jpg)

File: bcdbf95afbc268f⋯.jpg (147.91 KB,1280x720,16:9,The_protestors_vandalised_….jpg)

File: 5046cf7826e8d68⋯.jpg (191.54 KB,1280x720,16:9,The_Vietnam_memorial_in_Ca….jpg)


Vietnam War memorial in Canberra defaced with Gaza message

JOE KELLY - 11 March 2024

The RSL National President Greg Melick has condemned pro-Palestine activists who vandalised the Australian Vietnam Forces National Memorial in Canberra by spray-painting slogans on the monument describing Israel as a "colony" and warning of "genocide" in Gaza.

The protestors vandalised the memorial on Anzac Parade overnight on Sunday in a protest to highlight the situation in Gaza, with Mr Melick describing their actions as "contemptible" and Opposition veterans' affairs spokesman Barnaby Joyce warning they had undermined their own cause.

The slogans on the national memorial – which said "eyes on Rafah" and "this is genocide" – were written in large red graffiti and had not been cleaned on Monday, which is a public holiday in the nation's capital to mark "Canberra Day." Other slogans included "eyes on Gaza," "free Gaza" and "the colony will fall" and were clearly visible to residents walking or driving by.

Mr Melick said that people were "entitled to protest, but the desecration of a memorial to those who served, suffered and died in the Vietnam conflict is to be deplored."

“The protesters should have chosen another way to get their message across. The brave Australian service personnel who served in Vietnam had nothing to do with the current conflict in Gaza and to use their memorial as a platform to protest is contemptible. On behalf of the RSL and all who have served and continue to serve our nation, we condemn the actions of the protesters,” he said.

Mr Melick warned the desecration of the memorial did nothing to enhance the cause of those suffering in the Middle East.

Opposition veterans' affairs spokesman Barnaby Joyce told The Australian: "Bearing in mind that 523 Australians paid the supreme sacrifice and nearly 2,400 were wounded, that countless marriages broke down, that people's careers were left behind by men and women who unselfishly served this nation, the disgraceful actions of those who desecrate a war memorial are beyond contempt and anathema to every person from poorer suburbs to the best street.

"I don't know what you were trying to achieve, but if smashing your cause to pieces was your objective, then bullseye – you've hit it," Mr Joyce said.

One Canberra resident, Michael Webster, who took pictures of the graffiti on Monday morning expressed deep disappointment the ACT government had not taken swift action to have the memorial cleaned, saying the graffiti was an act of desecration.

"The memorial is a recognition of the service and sacrifice made by men and women in a war wholly unrelated to the situation in the Middle East right now," Mr Webster said. "It took years for Australians to reconcile about that war. The graffiti is intended to open up deep wounds in Australia for political purposes. It is intended to divide Australians. We cannot allow such behaviour in our society. Everyone is entitled to protest. But this is not a protest. This is an attack on our identity and national values."

An ACT Policing spokesperson told The Australian that police were "aware of a recent act of vandalism at a memorial on ANZAC parade."

"Police remind the community that peaceful protest is part of healthy democracy, however criminal acts will not be tolerated."

Veterans' Affairs Minister Matt Keogh said that "Australians have a right to peaceful protest, but to use the Vietnam Memorial as a platform is abhorrent."

"Those who have chosen to vandalise a memorial to those who fought and died for our country should reflect on the purpose and meaning of such memorials."


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80104e No.20550378

File: 869730ecc2b8bb2⋯.mp4 (15.72 MB,640x360,16:9,China_s_ambassador_to_Aust….mp4)

>>20359492 (pb)

Yang Hengjun not that sick, says Chinese ambassador Xiao Qian

Jessica Sier - Mar 11, 2024

Hopes for the release of dissident writer Yang Hengjun on medical grounds have been dampened after the Chinese ambassador said the democracy advocate was not as sick as his family has claimed.

Dr Yang, who is an Australian citizen, is facing a suspended death penalty in China after being found guilty of espionage and tried in a closed-door hearing in May 2021.

But Xiao Qian, who has been the Chinese ambassador to Australia for the last two years, said fears that Dr Yang may die in custody due to sustained ill-health and a serious kidney condition were overblown.

“His health is not perfect, but his health problems are not as serious as that has been described publicly,” Mr Xiao told The Australian Financial Review Business Summit.

“We have professional doctors looking after him during his detention in prison and we make sure that his basic medical rights are being protected.”

Australian consular officials were denied access to Dr Yang’s trial, which centred around espionage allegations.

“There are now regular visits by Australian diplomats,” Mr Xiao said. “But I want to emphasise that this is an individual case in a different legal system and different culture.

“A [suspended] death penalty doesn’t mean immediate execution. So theoretically, even if he complies to the ruling and his obligation, and serves his imprisonment without making further problems or further crimes, then … there is a chance that will he not be executed.”

A spokesman for Dr Yang’s family said his “extreme medical mistreatment” did improve after the family highlighted his plight before Prime Minister Anthony Albanese’s visit to China last year.

Dr Yang, who previously worked for China’s Ministry of State Security, was detained at Guangzhou Airport in January 2019 after arriving from New York. He had been living in the United States, where he was a visiting scholar at New York’s Columbia University. He became an Australian citizen in 2002.

Friends and family of Dr Yang have said has faced enforced sleep deprivation, erratic access to medication and being chained to a prison chair.

Last month, Foreign Minister Penny Wong said the government was “appalled” at what she described as “harrowing news” but added that Australia had to keep forging ahead with the rapprochement with China.

“Stabilisation means we co-operate where we can, disagree where we must, and we engage in the national interest,” she said.

“This is a decision within China’s legal system. Clearly, this is an occasion which we disagree. However, Australia will continue to advocate for the interests of Dr Yang.”



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80104e No.20550390

File: fbee0803752ddce⋯.jpg (4.4 MB,7728x5152,3:2,At_the_AFR_Businness_Summi….jpg)

File: 88fbe68d4dd91bc⋯.jpg (4.44 MB,7056x4704,3:2,China_s_ambassador_to_Aust….jpg)


Chinese ambassador says tariff discussions ‘on the right track’

Jessica Sier - Mar 11, 2024

Beijing’s restrictions on imports worth some $2.5 billion are “on the right track” to be lifted by the end of the month, China’s ambassador says, reassuring local companies that Australia’s largest trading partner would meet its ambitious growth target this year despite economic challenges.

“The relationship has stopped free-falling and stopped deteriorating,” Xiao Qian said, adding that Chinese authorities were “reviewing and investigating the tariffs imposed on Australia and things are moving on the right track and in the right direction”.

Those tariffs – on wine, lobster and red meat – were put in place from 2020, as relations between Beijing and Canberra deteriorated amid the COVID-19 pandemic and concerns about foreign influence in Australia. Trade restrictions on barley have already been lifted.

Mr Xiao’s comments follows those made by Trade Minister Don Farrell at the weekend. He said that any failure to reinstate the wine trade would result in a continued push for resolution by the World Trade Organisation.

Mr Xiao acknowledged China’s collapsing property market but said the country would meet its 5 per cent growth target – announced last week – for this year. “It’s not too high, it’s not low, it’s just an appropriate target,” he said, adding China needs to create 12.6 million jobs this year alone.

“We cannot afford to have growth that’s too low or lower than 5 per cent.”

Treasury Wine Estates was one major ASX-listed group affected by Chinese trade restrictions. Before the 212 per cent tariff was introduced, Australia’s wine export market was worth $1.2 billion to China.

Treasury Wine CEO Tim Ford said the company had kept a team of 100 people in China and, while it could take up to four years to rebuild the company’s business in the country, it would come back because “consumers in China love quality and the love brands.” “We’re ready to re-enter that market and consumers haven’t forgotten us,” Mr Ford said.

But Treasury Wine, as well as other companies stung by the tariffs, have undergone a “diversification experiment”, setting up operations in places like Thailand, Malaysia and India to make up for the lost Chinese demand.

Nicholas Moore, author of the Albanese government’s South-East Asian economic strategy, told The Australian Financial Review Business Summit that the investment that had poured into the region was unlikely to diminish as Chinese consumers again become available.

“There is no indication that people are looking away from the region,” Mr Moore, a former chief executive of Macquarie, said. “There is just too much at stake for companies to be focused on one market.”

Mr Ford said Malaysia and Thailand have emerged as strong customers for its wine in the vacuum left by China.

“Businesses are usually stealing customers from each other in developed markets, whereas in Asia there are ways to create entirely new markets,” Mr Ford said. “So that’s not something we’re going to give up on.”

The government has launched a $2 billion fund to boost trade between Australia and the ASEAN bloc, with a focus on clean energy and infrastructure.

Mr Moore warned Australian companies risk missing out on the South-East Asia economic boom through a combination of ignorance, sticking to mature markets and unwillingness to commit to the long haul to build relationships.

But Australia, which has seen its GDP growth slump from 3.5 per cent a decade ago to 2.5 per cent this year, has made a concerted effort to broaden its trade interests in the geopolitically sensitive Asia-Pacific region.

Mr Xiao said that the relationship between China and the United States was tense. “I hope the leaders in the US will realise the best way to serve the interest of the American people is to coexist, not to confront, not to decouple in the name of de-risk, because the world today is so closely interwoven,” Mr Xiao said of the coming presidential elections.


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80104e No.20550396

File: 8d3f6d946f14233⋯.jpg (628.75 KB,1268x1335,1268:1335,Vice_Foreign_Minister_Ma_Z….jpg)

File: e046462ae9422ef⋯.png (290.6 KB,600x400,3:2,W020240310785573379370.png)


Vice Foreign Minister Ma Zhaoxu Meets with Ambassador of Australia to China Scott Dewar

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China - 2024-03-10

On March 8, 2024, Vice Foreign Minister Ma Zhaoxu met with Ambassador of Australia to China Scott Dewar, and they had an exchange of views on China-Australia relations and issues of mutual interest and concern.



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80104e No.20550432

File: 9cf98f4d3132e72⋯.jpg (317.6 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Pedophile_cult_leader_Will….jpg)

File: eedb8f698aa29ca⋯.jpg (413.07 KB,1841x1381,1841:1381,Costellia_Kamm_ran_a_break….jpg)

File: de6773977f86898⋯.jpg (465.61 KB,2048x1536,4:3,Police_arrest_William_Cost….jpg)

Cult leader William ‘Little Pebble’ Kamm and wife arrested over historical child grooming charges

Josh Hanrahan - March 11, 2024

A young girl was allegedly told by notorious cult leader William “Little Pebble” Kamm that she had been “selected” by God to procreate with him, during what police say was a decade of grooming.

Kamm, 73, and his wife Sandra Costellia, 58, were arrested by NSW Police Sex Crimes Squad on Monday six months after the now adult woman came forward to claim she had been groomed by the couple ever since she was six years old.

A convicted pedophile, Kamm is best known for being the leader of a cult-style religious group called the “Order of St Charbel”, who claims the Virgin Mary visits his home on the NSW south coast every day.

NSW Police Child Abuse and Sex Crimes Squad boss Jayne Doherty said it will be alleged that since 2010 - including when Kamm was behind bars between 2007 and 2016 for sexual assault, and then between 2021 and 2022 for breaching an extended supervision order (ESO) - he continued to groom the girl via phone calls and with letters sent from prison.

“Police will allege that over the period the child was groomed, she was advised by the religious leader and his partner that she had been selected to procreate with the religious leader and build a new sect,” Detective Superintendent Doherty said.

“While the male accused was an inmate at a correctional centre (he allegedly) utilised phone calls, letters and the female accused… to groom that child.”

Det Supt Doherty said Kamm and Costellia would be charged with grooming a child under the age of 14, grooming a child for unlawful sexual activity and inciting a person to carry out a sexual act without consent.

An additional charge of failing to comply with an extended supervision order will also be laid against the man known as “Little Pebble”.

Det Supt Doherty said the woman had in recent years felt “supported” enough to come forward with the allegations.

“These are horrendous allegations… these are 13 of the formative years for that young girl and she is to be commended that she was so brave to come forward now,” she said.

“She came to a point in her life where she was supported enough to come forward.”

Last week detectives from the Sex Crimes Squad working under Strike Force Gandell executed two search warrants – one at the religious group’s headquarters in Bangalee on the South Coast, and the other at a unit in Sydney’s CBD.

Det Supt Doherty said police had seized a number of items relevant to their investigation during the search of the home and two sheds in Bangalee, including gifts allegedly given to the woman which were made by Kamm while he was in jail.

Kamm and Costellia were arrested at a CBD apartment on Monday and taken to Day Street Police Station, where they are expected to be charged with child grooming offences.

Kamm ran a breakaway Catholic cult known as the Order of Saint Charbel at Nowra on the NSW South Coast until 2005 when he was convicted of the aggravated sexual assault of two children in the 1990s.

The man who believed he was “the last Pope”, destined to repopulate a royal dynasty with 12 queens and 72 princesses, ended up serving almost a decade behind bars before being released on parole.

During the years he was in jail, the cult he created warned on its website that Sydney would pay the price for imprisoning Kamm.

“The city will collapse and the Harbour Bridge will collapse with the Opera House and many people shall perish and the authorities will come to believe and understand what they have done to you,” a post on the website read.

Following his release Kamm continued to claim the Virgin Mary appeared daily at the property outside of Nowra.

On top of the child grooming allegations, police are also expected to charge Kamm with failing to comply with his ESO - which was applied for by the NSW Government in the wake of his release in 2016, and approved by the NSW Supreme Court.

Kamm, who is under the conditions of the ESO until April 14, 2025, has previously been charged for breaches of the order including using a Wordpress website to run a blog for his church and posting on Facebook.



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80104e No.20555418

File: 64451ccb8f23b1f⋯.mp4 (15.64 MB,640x360,16:9,Foreign_Affairs_Minister_P….mp4)


Wong backs Biden, urges Israel to ‘change course’

Jessica Sier - Mar 12, 2024

Foreign Minister Penny Wong has warned that Israel will lose further support from its traditional allies if it proceeds with further ground attacks in the Gaza Strip, backing similar remarks from US President Joe Biden at the weekend.

“Unless Israel changes its course, it will continue to lose support,” Ms Wong said at The Australian Financial Review Business Summit in Sydney on Tuesday.

Mr Biden said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was “hurting Israel more than helping Israel” in how he was approaching its war against Hamas in Gaza.

Mr Netanyahu has said he would press ahead with a ground attack on the southern city of Rafah, where more than 1 million people are sheltering, despite the US calling this a “red line”.

“Many Australians, regardless of their politics, are horrified at the loss of innocent life,” Ms Wong said.

Earlier this year, Ms Wong called for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza alongside representatives from Canada and New Zealand. She knocked back the assertion that Australia had “taken cover” among these other countries.

“We are trying to amplify things that we care about, and it’s pleasing to work with Canada and New Zealand,” she said.

“This is multilateralism, or middle power, diplomacy in action. It’s important because we have a particular place in the international community and when we have a lot of shared views.”

About 30,000 Palestinians have died since October when terrorist group Hamas ambushed Israel. Close to half the estimated 240 people who were abducted during the Hamas attacks are still being held captive in Gaza, according to Israeli authorities.

Ms Wong also said she was concerned at the growing level of both anti-semitism and Islamophobia throughout Australia during the conflict. “That’s pulling apart the fabric of what holds the country together.”

Ms Wong has spent much of her two years as foreign minister re-establishing diplomatic ties throughout the Asia-Pacific region, where China, Australia’s largest trading partner, is gaining influence.

She stopped short of promoting the US as the dominant force in the region, but noted it was “indispensable”.

“As a middle power, [Australia] does best in a world where disputes are resolved by reference to law and norms, not power,” she said.

Ms Wong threw her weight behind the AUKUS agreement, saying there is no alternate plan to subdue an expansive China. “We have to make plan A work.”

AUKUS is a security partnership Australia signed with the US and the United Kingdom in 2021. The agreement supported Australia acquiring conventionally armed, nuclear-powered submarines, and was intended to shore up security in the Asia-Pacific region.

Last week, the Albanese government hosted the ASEAN nations in Melbourne, where the topic of China’s strength was paramount.

However, other ASEAN leaders, including the Malaysian Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim, warned Australia and the US against dragging South-East Asia into their problems with China.

“We are an independent nation. We are fiercely independent. We do not want to be dictated by any force,” Dr Anwar said.



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80104e No.20555431

File: 8ed42131dedade5⋯.mp4 (13.49 MB,640x360,16:9,Journalist_Liam_Mendes_has….mp4)

>>20444914 (pb)

‘No idea what we’re facing’: Alice crime scourge escalating

Despite last year’s intense focus, violence is still on the rise and few locals expect anything to change. CCTV does little to deter the gangs in search of cars to steal – including mine.

LIAM MENDES - March 11, 2024


It’s 4am in Alice Springs and a gang of young men in a stolen ute is attempting burnouts in the middle of town.

Two of the occupants are hanging out of the rear windows with scarfs wrapped around their faces, one armed with a baseball bat.

The young driver isn’t having much luck pulling off a burnout but that doesn’t stop him careening wildly through roundabouts and across pavements.

When they notice The Australian taking photographs, they start making gang signs and set off firecrackers.

The police station is just one block away but the cops are nowhere to be seen.

The Australian has reported before on children as young as 10 driving stolen cars through town. But these aren’t kids and there’s an air of menace about them.

The baseball bat is a sign of an unwelcome but increasing trend in crime in the Territory. In the past five years, offences against the person have jumped by 37 per cent; property offences by 53 per cent.

Police have been particular targets of the violence, says NT Police Association president Nathan Finn, with an upsurge in offenders deliberately ramming police cars with stolen vehicles.

“This type of violent, reckless, dangerous offending is escalating, and our members want to know what is being done to ensure their safety,” Mr Finn said.

Yet in the past 10 years, he says, only 20 more police have been employed.

“The NT government has absolutely no idea what our members face day in, day out, and the senior police executive can only operate with the finite resources it has,” Mr Finn said.

Even judges and prosecutors have become victims.

One judge has been the target of multiple burglaries; recently, a local Crown prosecutor packed up and left town after being robbed in daylight on the street near her office.

Houses are attacked with golf clubs, assaults are carried out on joggers. Shopping malls have been left ghostlike. Store owners lock their doors even when they’re open.

Little more than a year ago, a national spotlight was placed on the town amid fly-in visits from Anthony Albanese and Peter Dutton, but the intense focus was vanishingly brief and the town is again awash in grog.

No one is surprised to hear that Mr Albanese, Indigenous Australians Minister Linda Burney and Opposition Leader Mr Dutton, are all visiting again – and few expect anything to change.

Locals will continue to live in a state of constant hypervigilance.

Many homes are equipped with CCTV and motion-activated lights, but that does little to deter the gangs in search of cars to steal – including mine.


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80104e No.20555433

File: cbe532b4379c0cf⋯.jpg (884.75 KB,2048x1536,4:3,Youths_in_Alice_Springs_dr….jpg)

File: 7ef7329ec5078fd⋯.jpg (416.95 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Youths_in_Alice_Springs_dr….jpg)

File: 11bc22eb3504f89⋯.jpg (152.66 KB,2048x1536,4:3,Youths_in_Alice_Springs_br….jpg)

File: f002309c8a01928⋯.jpg (300.8 KB,1352x1014,4:3,An_overturned_stolen_ute_w….jpg)



During several months reporting from Alice Springs over the past year, this reporter has sometimes stayed with baker Darren Clark – a fierce advocate for his town since violence and crime exploded following the lapse in intervention-era grog bans.

Last week, I was asleep, along with the other people in Clark’s house, when a group of boys discovered the back door hadn’t properly locked. The boys knew what they were looking for, ignoring my camera equipment and homing in on the car keys.

My rented Nissan X-Trail was gone; so too Clark’s Toyota.

“There’s so many of these young gangs now,” Clark says. “They’re not scared of a camera being on. If they don’t leave a print, they can’t be identified by their faces. They know they can’t be charged.”

For the past few years, Clark has been living in daily fear of burglary and violence. “I’d rather they steal my car, instead of waking up to the kids in my room, which has been happening more and more,” he said.

“The amount of stories I’ve heard where people have had machetes held to their throats and (their keys) being demanded, I’ve always left mine out on the bench in plain sight. You’re always on high alert, when we hear a noise or the dog barks or growls.

“You’re always on edge.”

The tragedy is that it is not only the victims of crime in grave danger. Late last week, local Aboriginal families were plunged into mourning after an 18-year-old youth died when the stolen Toyota HiLux he was riding in rolled and crushed him. It was stolen from a caravan park on the outskirts of town, driven through a boom gate and taken for a joy ride.

On Saturday Detective Senior Sergeant Brendan Lindner said eight youths fled the scene, leaving their friend to die on the footpath. “They showed a callous disregard for their critically injured friend and fled the scene, abandoning the 18-year old who was lying on the road in significant pain and unable to move while against the vehicle, which was billowing smoke following the crash,” Mr Lindner said.

The young man who died was facing two counts of driving and using a vehicle without consent, and had been before the courts on four separate occasions. He was also the father of two-month-old.

A war between families who want “payback” against the driver and those who fled the vehicle has begun. Over the weekend the victim’s family moved out of town.



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80104e No.20555443

File: 304ee265bf2acd7⋯.jpg (2.61 MB,4541x3027,4541:3027,Prime_Minister_Anthony_Alb….jpg)

File: 4b3c3327e245263⋯.jpg (601.84 KB,3500x2335,700:467,Anthony_Albanese_Joe_Biden….jpg)

US Navy cuts Virginia-class submarine from budget in potential blow to AUKUS pact

Farrah Tomazin - March 12, 2024


Washington: The US Navy is cutting a Virginia-class submarine from its latest budget in a move that critics fear could send a troubling signal to Australia and other nations about Washington’s commitment to the AUKUS military pact.

Three months after a divided US Congress finally passed legislation to help Australia acquire nuclear-propelled submarines, the US Navy has proposed removing an attack submarine from its 2025 spending plan, in a tacit recognition that American shipbuilding yards are struggling with the pace of keeping its local fleet healthy.

Democratic congressman Joe Courtney said if approved, the navy’s proposal could have “a profound impact” on it and the Australian Navy, and make it harder to assuage concerns about America’s ability to deliver on AUKUS while maintaining its own industrial base.

“One of the big questions with AUKUS was: will it provide enough submarines to keep the US fleet at an adequate level and will it produce enough submarines to satisfy the three boats that we agreed to sell?” Courtney told this masthead.

AUKUS was unveiled by Australia, the UK and US in 2021 as part of a broader strategy to counter China’s economic and military advances in the Indo-Pacific.

Last year, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, US President Joe Biden and British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced the US had agreed to sell three to five Virginia-class boats to Australia. But to achieve this, American submarine manufacturers would have to build at least two boats a year, from a current yearly average of 1.2.

Courtney, a ranking member of the powerful House Armed Services committee, said if the proposed cut was enacted “it will remove one more attack submarine from a fleet that is already 17 submarines below the navy’s long stated requirement of 66”.

“Given the new commitment the Department of Defence and Congress made last year to sell three submarines to our ally Australia, which I enthusiastically support, the ramifications of the navy’s proposal will have a profound impact on both countries’ navies,” he said.

Concerns about the US Navy’s budget cut came as army chiefs for Australia, the UK and the US gathered in Washington to talk up the importance of AUKUS and of shared co-operation, particularly at a time of growing instability in the Indo-Pacific, the Middle East and Europe.

“In an era of great power competition, defence and security is once again a whole of nation endeavour, but even more so, it requires us to work even more closely and in a more integrated fashion with allies and with partners,” said Australian Lieutenant General Simon Stuart.

In Congress, however, billions of dollars in funding for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan have been in limbo for months due to partisan divisions between Republicans and Democrats as they head towards a presidential election in November.


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80104e No.20555446

File: c6e480253733b6e⋯.jpg (4.76 MB,7360x4912,460:307,A_Virginia_class_submarine.jpg)



Ukraine, for instance, desperately needs more military funding to fight Russia, but after two years of warfare, many Republicans now oppose continuing to spend billions of dollars to help the sovereign nation.

General Sir Patrick Sanders, the British Army’s chief of general staff, described the war in Ukraine as “the principal pressure point on a really fragile world order”.

Sanders also warned that failing to counter Russia’s aggression would consign future generations to a world that was infinitely more unstable and perilous.

“So for now, Ukrainian blood … and bravery is buying time, but they need our support,” he said. “It is not just morally right to do that, it is in our own self-interest because preserving our future security by supporting Ukraine is much better value than fighting a war.”

Sanders, Stuart and General Randy A. George, the chief of staff of the US Army, were speaking at a forum at the Centre for Strategic and International Studies, a Washington-based think tank, soon after news of the Pentagon’s fiscal year 2025 priorities emerged.

However, the idea of a submarine cut had been touted earlier, prompting members of the House Armed Services Committee to write to Biden in January, warning him that “any deviation from the planned cadence of the construction and procurement of two submarines per year will reverberate both at home and abroad, with allies and competitors alike”.

Courtney said the addressing the issue would be “a high priority” for committee members in coming months.

The US Defence Department’s 2025 funding request lays out about $US849.8 billion of investments for the next financial year. Deputy Secretary of Defence Kathleen Hicks told reporters on Monday that the budget request had to be capped due to the Fiscal Responsibility Act, which seeks to limit government spending in the US.

“Because of these statutory caps, and as good stewards of taxpayer dollars, we made smart, responsible choices to work within those limits,” she said.


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80104e No.20555460

File: 56b6690f02d31fb⋯.jpg (243.93 KB,999x665,999:665,The_Los_Angeles_class_fast….jpg)

File: 212befe51a0748b⋯.jpg (213.25 KB,999x665,999:665,The_Los_Angeles_class_fast….jpg)

File: dd2f6807c806006⋯.jpg (222.59 KB,999x665,999:665,U_S_Navy_Cmdr_James_Tuthil….jpg)


USS Annapolis Visits Australia

Commander, Submarine Group Seven - 03.11.2024

ROCKINGHAM, Australia - USS Annapolis (SSN 760) arrived in HMAS Stirling in Perth, Western Australia Sunday.

This marks the second visit by a U.S. fast-attack submarine to HMAS Stirling since the announcement of the AUKUS [Australia, United Kingdom, United States] Optimal Pathway in March 2023. The Optimal Pathway is designed to deliver a conventionally armed, nuclear-powered attack submarine capability to the Royal Australian Navy (RAN).

“Historically, we’ve had allied SSNs visit Australian ports for many decades totaling more than 1,800 days,” said Rear Adm. Matt Buckley, Head of Nuclear Submarine Capability at the Australian Submarine Agency. “Starting with USS North Carolina (SSN 777) last August, these visits are taking on a more important meaning for the Royal Australian Navy and the Australian Submarine Agency as we build the infrastructure, knowledge, and stewardship needed to establish SRF-West in 2027.”

Increasing the number of SSN visits to Australia and the establishment of SRF-W comprise the first of three Optimal Pathway phases. As early as 2027, the United States will begin rotational presence in the Western Australia facility as a way to grow the RAN’s ability to operate and maintain a fleet of SSNs. Ultimately, there will be up to four U.S. Virginia-class submarines and one United Kingdom Astute-class submarine at HMAS Stirling.

The second phase of the Optimal Pathway begins in the early 2030s, with the United States selling Australia three Virginia-class submarines, with the potential to sell up to two more if needed. Phase Three sees the combination of a base British submarine design and advanced United States technology to deliver SSN-AUKUS, the future attack submarine for both Australia and the United Kingdom. Australia plans to deliver the first Australian-built SSN-AUKUS in the early 2040s.

“Having our submarines rotating through HMAS Stirling is critical to building Australia’s sovereign capability to safely and competently operate SSNs,” shared Rear Adm. Lincoln Reifsteck, the U.S. AUKUS Pillar One Program Manager. “Each visit will build upon the previous one and allow the RAN team to grow its capabilities. This visit will see Australians take a more active role in the execution of a voyage repair period.”

"For decades, the U.S. Navy, Royal Australian Navy, and Royal Navy have trained and operated together," said Rear Adm. Chris Cavanaugh, Commander, Submarine Group (CSG) 7. "AUKUS is a natural extension of our already close relationship, building unprecedented capability and interoperability that will pay dividends for generations."

“It’s an honor to be here and the team looks forward to working with the Australians and furthering our relationship,” said Cmdr. James Tuthill, Commanding Officer, USS Annapolis. “The enthusiasm and professionalism of the HMAS Stirling team is apparent, and we look forward to making this visit as productive as possible.”

Initially announced in September 2021, the AUKUS trilateral agreement is a strategic endeavor aimed at strengthening the security and defense capabilities of the three nations that also promotes stability and security in the Indo-Pacific region. Australia will acquire conventionally armed SSNs for the Royal Australian Navy under Pillar I of AUKUS via the Optimal Pathway announced by the heads of the three partner nations on March 13, 2023.


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80104e No.20555470

File: 39898cf749e1e0c⋯.jpg (782.25 KB,3300x2550,22:17,Maxwell_was_convicted_of_a….jpg)

File: 2afbe8c02c77984⋯.jpg (732.37 KB,3307x2554,3307:2554,Maxwell_has_continued_to_p….jpg)

Ghislaine Maxwell appeal over 2021 sex trafficking conviction to begin in New York

Mike Bedigan - 12 March 2024

Disgraced British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell’s appeal over her conviction for sex trafficking in 2021 is due to begin this week.

Maxwell, 62, was sentenced to 20 years behind bars last year, after being found guilty of five counts of trafficking and abusing young girls over decades with the late paedophile Jeffrey Epstein.

Her appeal, which is taking place at a federal court in New York, is set to begin on Tuesday. Lawyers have argued that if her conviction is not overturned then she should be given a new trial or re-sentenced.

It is expected that during the appeal, Maxwell will claim that the four victims who testified against her at trial had “faded, distorted and motivated memories”. Her lawyers will argue that she was prosecuted as a “proxy” for Epstein to satisfy public outrage after his death in custody while awaiting trial in 2019.

The Associated Press reported that she will also claim that prosecutors breached a non-prosecution agreement, charged her with “time-barred offenses”, and recast Epstein’s crimes to make her the culprit.

They further allege that prosecutors teamed up with victims who were suing Epstein and Maxwell “whose interests were financial, to develop new allegations.”

It was later revealed that two other jurors also failed to disclose similar information to the court, which may, in certain circumstances, have disqualified them from serving.

Maxwell was found guilty of the abuse and trafficking of four young girls after a jury trial in New York in December 2021. She has continued to protest her innocence since the conviction.

She has also refused to apologise to her victims and said they should blame US authorities for “allowing Epstein to die” in an interview broadcast on TalkTV in January 2023.

At her trial, prosecutors outlined how Maxwell operated as his enabler in luring vulnerable teenage girls with promises of scholarships, gifts and financial assistance for their families, and coerced them into becoming objects for his sexual gratification.

Victims described during the trial how Maxwell initially came across as a trusting, sisterly figure, who would then work in unison with Epstein to abuse and exploit them.

Ahead of the court appearance to appeal, Maxwell’s brother Ian Maxwell told The Independent: “The American justice system and the court were biased against my sister and she didn’t get a fair trial.

“Her jury was not impartial: three of them had been sexually abused but did not disclose this, depriving the defence of the opportunity to challenge their selection as jurors. How could they fairly and dispassionately consider evidence in a sex abuse case?”

The US government has urged the appeals court to uphold her conviction, with prosecutors saying: “The government’s evidence at trial established that over the course of a decade, Maxwell facilitated and participated in the sexual abuse of multiple young girls.”


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80104e No.20555490

File: 41988d9de5a3389⋯.jpg (1.43 MB,4667x3109,4667:3109,Donald_Trump_s_notorious_p….jpg)

File: 85310a7cc19b092⋯.jpg (1.55 MB,5472x3648,3:2,Dr_Michael_Green_of_the_Un….jpg)


OPINION: How terrible would a second Trump presidency be for Australia? Terrible enough.

Peter Hartcher, political and international editor - March 12, 2024


Now that Donald Trump is the inevitable Republican candidate for the US presidency, countries everywhere need to prepare. Can Australia Trump-proof itself somehow?

Some of Australia’s most senior officials have turned to Mike Green for his advice in recent weeks. Green is an American politico-policy expert who relocated to Australia a couple of years ago to run the US Studies Centre at Sydney University.

The bad news about a second Trump presidency: “It’d be terrible,” he tells me. The good news: “It wouldn’t be as terrible as people think.”

Green is one of a particular Washington type; hyperconnected, hypersmart, hyperactive, hypertalkative. He’s also a character. He speaks Japanese, he’s worked for a Japanese politician and has a black belt in the Japanese sword martial art of iaido. But before you pigeonhole him, he’s also an expert on the bagpipes.

He worked in the White House leading Asia policy for George W. Bush, but he would never work in a Trump White House.

He was one of 50 “never Trumpers” – national security officials, all of whom had worked for Republican presidents – who published a full-page letter in The New York Times to warn voters that Trump would be “the most reckless president in American history”. They got that right.

So what advice has Green given Canberra? First thing, he says, “is what not to do – do not panic like the Europeans. They have more reason to worry than Australia or Japan.” Because Trumpworld, as he calls it, and the America First ideology are rooted in an anti-European history going back to the 19th century.

“Europe represents everything they hate – open immigration, progressive social policy like gay marriage and abortion, the growth of the bureaucracy and the weakening of the state.”

This helps explain Trump’s taunting of America’s European allies in NATO. By contrast, “a Trump administration would be full of people who are Asia-firsters. I don’t agree with them, but they are all talking about pulling out of Ukraine to shift resources to Asia.” Not necessarily because they love Asia but because they want to confront China. “So Canberra shouldn’t panic, they have something to work with there.”

Second, what of Trump’s stated intention to persecute his enemies if he should win office? Green predicts “ugly fights” as Trump pursues the Department Of Justice. But he might also go after the US intelligence community, says Green. This would worry Australian governments of any stripe.

However, “the courts and Congress will block Trump from dismantling parts of the government that the government needs to protect the country”, predicts Green.

Third, on specific policy areas, Green expects there’d be some damage: “I think the climate compact would be in big trouble.” The compact is the overarching Australia-US framework for co-operation on renewables, signed in May last year.

“There would be no movement on the transition to renewables – he hates anything to do with EVs, batteries, he’d definitely gut those parts of it.” But Green would expect the joint US-Australia agenda on critical minerals to survive a transition to Trump “because of the defence connection, and it could have upside for alliances like the Quad”, comprising Australia, Japan, India and the US.


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80104e No.20555493

File: 63f48e06c449e5e⋯.jpg (227.03 KB,3123x1937,3123:1937,How_terrible_would_a_secon….jpg)



What about Trump’s plan to impose new across-the-board tariffs of 10 per cent on all imports from all countries, and 40 per cent on products from China? “It sounds cool and tough to say ‘tariff man’,” one of Trump’s self-awarded titles, “but he will be absolutely devastated if he acts” on his stated policy.

Why? “Because if Australia, Canada, the EU threaten retaliation, it could really hurt Trump in agriculture-supporting states and districts. He’d have a political gun at his head,” says Green.

He points out that Trump modified earlier trade promises that threatened to backfire, for instance renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) rather than his promise to cancel it.

There’s also the fact that Trump exempted Australia from some punitive trade plans last time around because Australia – almost uniquely in the world – runs a trade deficit with the US. Trump thinks of trade as a zero-sum, country-by-country, accounting exercise. If the US has a surplus, it’s winning, in his mind. And, in its trade with Australia, it is “winning”.

There might even be some potential trade gains for Australia under Trump, Green speculates. An agreement on digital trade, for example.

On AUKUS, Green thinks Australia frets too much. The fact that Australia is investing in US subs-building capacity is a big plus, he says. And Green expects that the Republicans would be likely to step up funding for the US submarine program, meaning that any subs sold to – or made with – Australia need not detract from America’s production for its own fleet needs.

This brings Green to his two big worries. And they’re whoppers. One is the effect that a Trump 2.0 could have on American democracy: “It won’t collapse, but it could corrode.”

The other is how Trump would act in a major security crisis in the Indo-Pacific. “What worries me most is that there’s a Taiwan crisis and Trump says, ‘I won’t defend Taiwan’, or there’s a Korea crisis and Trump says ‘I won’t defend South Korea, I’ll meet Kim Jong-un.’”

Even if the US ultimately were to defend Taiwan or South Korea, any initial hesitation would embolden adversaries and make any war bigger, harder and more deadly.

How might Australia try to influence a Trump White House to get the outcomes it seeks? Green warns that it will be “harder for a Labor government” than it was under Coalition prime ministers because there is less ideological common interest. Trump, he points out, loves to create fights with centre-left leaders: “A Labor government has to be really disciplined”.

Australia, counsels Green, should work with like-minded allies such as Japan because “Japan is in good standing with conservative Asia-firsters – Australia shouldn’t be so proud to think that it has to go it alone” in seeking to influence Trump policy.

So how terrible? Terrible enough, it seems.

Peter Hartcher is the international editor.


>They are in full blown panic mode.

>Enjoy the show.

>Each FAKE NEWS article written or attack is a badge of honor - military grade.

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80104e No.20560986

File: 5e193973d76d355⋯.jpg (141.89 KB,2048x1152,16:9,China_s_Ambassador_to_Aust….jpg)


Australian wine back on the menu as China to remove tariffs


The Australian wine industry is one step closer to reclaiming ­access to the China market and more than $1bn in annual sales after the Chinese Ministry of Commerce released an interim draft determination that proposed a lifting of crippling tariffs on Australian wine imports.

The largest exporter of Australian wine, ASX-listed Treasury Wine Estates, whose labels include Penfolds, Pepperjack and Wolf Blass, said on Tuesday night it had been advised of the draft ­determination.

It noted it was not a final determination and was “subject to change” by the ministry.

China introduced tariffs of up to 200 per cent on imports of Australian wine in 2021, a move widely seen as part of a range of trade sanctions against Australia in the wake of political tensions with the Morrison government.

The tariffs decimated the $1.2bn wine trade to China and forced many winemakers to look elsewhere as the largest global market was shut down.

It also left many Australian winemakers, part of a $45bn sector, with excess stock as the massive tariffs made it uneconomic to sell into China.

Australian Grape & Wine welcomed the interim decision, with its chief executive Lee McLean describing it as a positive step towards resuming trade.

“We remain cautiously optimistic about the forthcoming decision and will await (the ministry’s) final determination,” Mr McLean said.

The draft decision comes after Australia and China both agreed to private discussions about the tariffs following an interim determination by the World Trade Organisation last year following a complaint by Australia.

The move comes ahead of a planned visit that could come as early as next week by China’s Foreign Minister, Wang Yi, who is expected to visit Sydney and Canberra on a two-day visit.

TWE said it expected that a final determination would be issued regarding tariffs on Australian wine imports by the end of the month. The company has maintained a foothold in the China market in recent years by sending wine made in the US and France to China and supporting the development of the Chinese wine industry, including production of a Chinese-made Penfolds released last year.

The company’s chief executive, Tim Ford, has maintained a confidence in the future of the China market despite the tariffs.

He told investors at the company’s half-yearly results in February that the company was holding back some supplies to be ready to reenter the China market with Australian wine if the tariffs were lifted.

The company has maintained a staff in China of some 100 to maintain its exposure to the market in the hope that tariffs would be lifted.

The news should give a boost to a large number of smaller wine makers who have suffered from the closure of the China market.

TWE said it expected that the financial benefits of any new access to the China market would be “incremental” in the current fin­ancial year to the end of June.

Mr Ford is expected to ramp up sales of Australia-made wine once the tariff outlook is clearer.

The move on wine tariffs followed a decision by Chinese authorities to lift tariffs on imports of Australian barley last year following a review by the WTO. Trade restrictions on exports of Australian coal, timber and cotton have been lifted over the past year following an improvement in the Australia-China relationship under the Albanese government.

Ministry of Commerce spokesman He Yadong said Beijing was proposing a “package” deal to end the dispute. “We are willing to meet the Australian side halfway, further enhance mutual trust and co-operate on the basis of the settlement of the barley case dispute,” he said last year, according to a report in China’s official newsagency Xinhua. The Chinese government spokesman said both countries needed to “accommodate each other’s concerns”, urging Canberra to note that “China’s wine industry is very important”.

Minister for Agriculture Murray Watt said the interim recommendation to remove tariffs is good news for Australian wine growers and makers.

“While today’s development is welcome, we will keep advocating for the removal of remaining trade impediments for Australian producers and processors,” he said.


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80104e No.20561037

File: 0eebe09c231a377⋯.jpg (4.96 MB,3819x2477,3819:2477,Los_Angeles_class_submarin….jpg)

File: 7e0238720888233⋯.jpg (4.46 MB,3640x2477,3640:2477,Commanding_Officer_of_HMAS….jpg)



US Navy’s nuclear submarine AUKUS charm offensive begins in Perth

Hamish Hastie - March 13, 2024

The United States Navy and Royal Australian Navy have launched a PR assault on Perth this week to address a looming AUKUS recruitment crisis.

The USS Annapolis Los Angeles-class fast-attack nuclear submarine docked at HMAS Stirling Naval Base on Sunday where much of its 155 crew will use their time on land to sell the job to Australians who will be needed to man the RAN’s own Virginia-class nuclear submarines over the next decade.

USS Annapolis submariners will this week play a game of American football against West Australian gridiron players and take TAFE students for a tour of the 7000-tonne warship.

At the head of the charm offensive is USS Annapolis’ commanding officer Commander James Tuthill who lead media on a tour of the submarine on Tuesday and spoke volumes of Perth.

“What I’m focused on is giving my crew time here in Western Australia, which I have to tell you is a dream scenario, really,” he said.

“From my perspective, as an American sailor, sailors wait their whole career for this opportunity.”

As part of AUKUS about 700 US Navy personnel will live and work in Perth and US Naval Attache to Australia Kevin Quarderer said every sailor wanted to come to Australia.

“Everyone has heard about Perth, they hear the great stories from the crews that return out of these visits,” he said.

“This is where people want to be.”

The USS Annapolis’ visit marks one year since Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and US President Joe Biden gathered in San Diego to set the timeline of the AUKUS agreement.

It has also occurred the same week the US Navy revealed it wanted to cut a Virginia-class submarine from its latest budget which Democratic congressman Joe Courtney said could have a profound impact on both it and the RAN.

Under the three-phase $368 billion AUKUS pact, nuclear submarines from both the US and UK will have a permanent presence at HMAS Stirling from as soon as 2027 known as Submarine Rotational Force - West.

During this phase, the RAN will get a taste of what maintaining and operating a fleet of nuclear submarines is like prior to the delivery of between three and five Virginia-class submarines from the US beginning in the 2030s.

Phase three is Australia building and maintaining its own nuclear submarines using US and UK technology, with the first submarine pencilled in for completion in the 2040s.

The three phases will need a forecasted 20,000 jobs across the defence force, industry and government.

But defence and government are concerned that those roles won’t be filled, particularly in the submarine force which already has a shortage of submariners on the existing Collins-class fleet.

Australia’s submarine force commander Commodore Tom Phillips said recruitment has always been a challenge for the defence force as it competes for talent in Australia’s tight labour market.

“We compete for good people, like a number of other sectors in the community, and it’s always been a challenge,” he said.

Asked why a young West Australian should look at a career in defence over the state’s lucrative resources sector he said it offered a different sense of serving the country.

“You’re putting yourself in harm’s way sometimes for other people. That’s something I don’t know if you can do in other industries,” he said.

Phillips hoped the USS Annapolis’ presence would increase awareness of the opportunities in Australia’s submarine force.


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80104e No.20561052

File: aa3218fbe8a15e3⋯.jpg (1.57 MB,5234x3489,5234:3489,Abigail_Bradshaw_and_Brand….jpg)

Why this cyber chief thinks your electric car is a security risk

Andrew Tillett - Mar 13, 2024

Chinese technology is “inherently suspect” and deserves much greater scrutiny, a top US cybersecurity official says, as warnings grow that Beijing’s stranglehold on the electric vehicle market poses a security threat to Western countries.

In an interview with The Australian Financial Review, US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency executive director Brandon Wales also flagged that Five Eyes members and other Western nations would step up co-operation to call out cyberattacks and act against adversaries such as China, Russia, Iran and North Korea.

The four countries have been dubbed an “axis of autocracy” for efforts to collaborate on disrupting the international rules-based order, but Mr Wales said there was little evidence they were working together to the same extent in cyberspace.

“There’s a reason we can’t trust them. For the same reason that they can’t trust each other,” Mr Wales said in a joint interview with the head of the Australian Cyber Security Centre, Abigail Bradshaw.

“These are countries that are generally untrustworthy, and there are going to be limits to the degree of collaboration that they will undertake. They don’t have things like Five Eyes alliances. They are not dependable partners.”

With the Albanese government flagging new powers over critical infrastructure providers to protect them from cyberattacks, Mr Wales highlighted the risks by saying China continued to try to get into US infrastructure for “future disruptive and destructive attacks”.

US President Joe Biden last month instigated an investigation into technology embedded in Chinese-made electric vehicles. Officials said they could be used to track where people drive their vehicles, or even disabled remotely.

Meanwhile, The Wall Street Journal reported this month a congressional probe of Chinese-made cargo cranes at US ports were fitted with modems that politicians feared could be accessed covertly. The Biden administration has announced plans to replace foreign-built cranes with US-made ones.

Asked whether such concerns were justified or paranoia, Mr Wales said: “I think that any time that you are purchasing technology from a country that has, as its stated purpose, to burrow into US critical infrastructure and hold it at risk, that technology is going to be inherently suspect.

“It should and deserves a higher degree of scrutiny.

“That being said, much of China’s targeting of US critical infrastructure is happening through vulnerabilities in technology that is designed by US companies. So, it is not enough to focus just on Chinese cranes and any other technology that’s coming directly from China.

“We need to make sure that our technology and what we’re building is secure by design because it is the mechanism by which they are getting into our networks today.”

Ms Bradshaw said the ACSC had issued advice to consumers and businesses on how to configure internet devices and manage supply chains to mitigate the risk, “but there are issues like the origin of the technology and the operation of the laws in the country of origin, which should go to inform the views of any purchaser”.

Mr Wales said measures, such as the naming earlier this year of the Russian hacker behind the Medibank cyberattack and imposition of sanctions on him by Australia, the US and Britain, were effective in changing behaviour.

“We do think it’s important that wherever possible, we have other like- minded countries operating with us because it’ll have greater impact, and things like sanctions have a greater impact when you have more countries involved in them. And so we’re always going to try to do that.”


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80104e No.20561062

File: 98f9494ede6cf7f⋯.jpg (1.32 MB,5629x3753,5629:3753,Brandon_Wales_the_executiv….jpg)


‘Societal chaos’: US cyber chief sounds alarm on China threat

Matthew Knott - March 13, 2024


China is hacking into rival nations’ critical infrastructure networks so it can disrupt American military activities in the Asia-Pacific and unleash societal chaos, one of the United States’ most senior cybersecurity officials has warned.

Brandon Wales, executive director of the US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, said the US, Australia and other democratic nations needed to respond to an “extremely significant shift” in Beijing’s strategy from a focus on more passive forms of espionage to laying the groundwork for offensive cyberattacks.

“China’s goal is to be pre-positioned to have the ability to effect an attack when they want, and we have found evidence that they have burrowed inside of networks and in some cases have been there for several years,” said Wales, who is visiting Australia for meetings with his Australian counterparts.

Wales said Beijing was still intent on stealing political and intellectual property secrets, but had added a new mission of preparing for disruptive cyberattacks on adversaries’ critical infrastructure in the event of a conflict.

“It is concerning that we’re actually seeing evidence of it coming to fruition, and it requires a full court press from the United States and our allies around the world to stop it,” he said in an interview at the Australian Signals Directorate's headquarters in Canberra.

The Five Eyes intelligence-sharing alliance, made up of the US, Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the UK, last year accused China of launching a major hacking campaign on critical infrastructure assets in Guam, an island in the Pacific Ocean that is home to some of America’s most important military bases.

Tech giant Microsoft said the “stealthy and targeted malicious activity” had been carried out by Volt Typhoon, a state-sponsored network of hackers based in China that typically focuses on espionage and information gathering.

"I would say China is by far the most significant threat to US critical infrastructure in cyberspace that we face," Wales said.

“While obviously, other nation states like Russia and Iran have designs on US critical infrastructure the sophistication and scale of the Chinese program dwarfs those [of the] other countries.”

Wales said China had two goals when it came to targeting US critical infrastructure assets.

“In some respects, they’re looking to disrupt our ability to project power,” he said. “So if we had to support allies in the Pacific, making that more difficult.”

Secondly, he accused Beijing of “targeting a wide range of infrastructure for the purposes of sowing societal chaos inside the United States to affect US decision-making at a time and place of their choosing”.

“So if we want to have the type of geopolitical latitude that we need to advance US security interests and those of our allies, we need to ensure that China is not successful,” he said.


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80104e No.20561064

File: 5975d88939c08ed⋯.jpg (883.21 KB,3012x2008,3:2,US_President_Joe_Biden_has….jpg)



Wales, who is regarded as one of the US’ top cyber policy experts, said that while criminal cyber gangs often targeted hospitals and other healthcare providers for ransomware attacks, Beijing was focused on assets such as oil and gas transportation nodes.

“But the reality is that almost any critical infrastructure can be targeted,” he said. “And we see targets in every single sector over the course of a year from both nation states and criminal organisations.”

Abigail Bradshaw, head of the Australian Signals Directorate’s Australian Cyber Security Centre, said there were “certainly similarities” between the threats faced by the US and Australia, adding that the agency had sought to raise the alarm about increased risks to Australian critical infrastructure assets from state and non-state actors.

US President Joe Biden recently issued an executive order to improve cybersecurity protections at American ports and announced an unprecedented investigation into potential security risks in the US automobile sector amid fears China could use smart cars to spy on American drivers, prompting calls for Australia to follow suit.

Wales said cybersecurity had been an “afterthought” for too long and needed to be a priority for emerging technologies such as electric vehicles and associated charging infrastructure.

Noting that the vast majority of cranes used at US ports were made in China, he added that “we have seen targeting, including from China and others who have looked to exploit port operations to potentially cause disruption”.

“When you are relying upon untrustworthy technology manufactured by countries who we know are looking to do us harm, having that be in critical elements of our infrastructure poses additional risk,” he said.

The US would increasingly look to build its own cranes or import them from friendly nations such as Japan and South Korea rather than rely on China, he said.

China has repeatedly rejected US hacking allegations as baseless, claiming that China is the world’s biggest victim of cyberattacks.

Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Mao Ning said last month that it was “completely unfounded” to say that Chinese-made cranes posed a national security risk to the US.

“We firmly oppose the US overstretching the concept of national security and abusing state power to go after Chinese products and companies,” she said.


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80104e No.20561119

File: 3a287e54558088e⋯.jpg (456.97 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Australia_s_most_senior_he….jpg)

File: b3d98a0d7b4ed9f⋯.jpg (375.39 KB,1275x1650,17:22,0001.jpg)

File: d38083761ac57ca⋯.jpg (596.13 KB,1275x1650,17:22,0002.jpg)

File: b20f8b54070826c⋯.jpg (210.25 KB,1241x1754,1241:1754,0003.jpg)

File: 7038ee2725cda2b⋯.jpg (745.9 KB,1241x1754,1241:1754,0004.jpg)

Puberty blockers for trans kids under fresh scrutiny as NHS issues ban



Australia’s children’s hospitals are increasingly being left as international outliers as Britain’s National Health Service moves to ban the routine prescription of puberty blockers in children, raising questions over the safety and clinical effectiveness of the hormone drugs that are given to children experiencing gender dysphoria.

The NHS released a statement saying “we have concluded that there is not enough evidence to support the safety or clinical effectiveness of [puberty blockers] to make the treatment routinely available at this time” and announced the drugs will only be able to be prescribed as part of clinical trials. The decision is in line with a central recommendation of pediatrician Hillary Cass following an extensive examination of the care being provided to children at London’s Tavistock clinic in the wake of clinical governance concerns raised by doctors and patients.

While Australian gender-affirming doctors continue to maintain puberty blockers simply “pause” sexual development while confused children weigh up whether to progress to transition, the Cass review found that an ideologically-driven approach at the Tavistock had essentially transplanted usual clinical governance practice and usual practices of comprehensive assessment and care, and that children were being rushed onto the drugs and placed on a medical pathway that almost invariably progressed to the later prescription of cross-sex hormones and sometimes surgery.

International evidence has mounted since the interim findings of the esteemed pediatrician were handed down in Britain, with several progressive countries that had wholly embraced gender-affirming care instituting greater restrictions and safeguards and launching reviews into the model’s evidence base. Some of the original Dutch researchers who published the first papers on puberty blockers in the treatment of gender-questioning children – that provided the evidence upon which the gender-affirming model is based, including in Australia – have now questioned their own findings, prompting the Netherlands parliament to commission fresh research.

There are concerns around the drugs’ impact on children’s brain development, bone mineral density, and potentially their future fertility and sexual function especially when the patients progress onto cross-sex hormones.

Last year Norway’s independent healthcare investigator, the Norwegian Healthcare Investigation Board, published a report pronouncing that little was known about the long-term effects of puberty blockers and side effects of treatment with hormone drugs and issuing a recommendation that “puberty blockers and hormonal and surgical gender-confirmation treatment for children and young people are defined as experimental treatment”.

The world’s leading clinicians in gender-affirming care appear to accept that the model is experimental, with the president of the World Professional Association for Transgender Health openly admitting in comments from a discussion forum recently leaked to US journalist Michael Shellenberger and published by his think-tank Environmental Progress that there was no research whatsoever as to the consequences on the future fertility for children placed on puberty blockers, and that boys given the drugs at a pre-pubescent stage were later unable to orgasm.

The files also revealed deep uncertainty among clinicians at the ability of young people to provide informed consent to hormone treatment. Shellenberger, who is aligned with gender-critical activists Genspect, has taken a strong stance in opposition to gender-affirming care and has not revealed the source of the leak.


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80104e No.20561127

File: 214d1eac9eaeccf⋯.jpg (856.47 KB,1241x1754,1241:1754,0005.jpg)

File: 9f8ccab3dbd4e26⋯.jpg (629.99 KB,1241x1754,1241:1754,0006.jpg)

File: 12d9de16b02d9cd⋯.jpg (682.34 KB,1241x1754,1241:1754,0007.jpg)

File: 5db23a5377b37f8⋯.jpg (604.5 KB,1241x1754,1241:1754,0008.jpg)

File: 43c710eece0863b⋯.jpg (590.98 KB,1241x1754,1241:1754,0009.jpg)



Australia’s leading physicians in gender-affirming care – who have authored guidelines of care adopted as quasi-national national standards in the absence of medical colleges stepping into the field – have also acknowledged their practices are somewhat of a work in progress.

In a response to the interim findings of the Cass review authored by Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne doctors Ken Peng and Michelle Telfer, co-authored by trans activist Jeremy Wiggins and published in the British Medical Journal, the physicians argued Dr Cass had ignored international consensus around the prescription of puberty blockers and that seeking to craft a policy based on “the middle ground” consensus by taking into account “those who view gender diversity as inherently pathological” was “a fallacy”.

The editorial piece said that while long-term data was “undoubtedly needed”, taking a cautious approach to the prescription of the drugs “ignores more than two decades of clinical experience in this area as well as existing evidence showing the benefits of these hormonal interventions on the mental health and quality of life of gender diverse young people”.

The article noted that “it will take many years to obtain these long term data” and that it was legitimate to proceed on the basis of “professional consensus”.

However, despite the presentation of consensus by gender-affirming care advocates, medical consensus is far from assured in Australia, with the foremost experts in children’s hormone treatment, pediatric endocrinologists, opposing the prescription of puberty blockers to children during consultation by the Royal College of Physicians two years ago. Their dissenting view was suppressed by the RACP in its published position reporting on its consultations.

Psychiatrists have also put forward an increasingly cautious view, as have the clinicians in charge at Sydney’s flagship children’s hospital at Westmead.

Despite the call for more data, RCH clinicians have published very little data on the outcomes of their patients, which have swelled in number to about 1000 from very small numbers a decade ago. Despite the oft-pronounced extreme suicide risk for transgender young people, Westmead’s published research has questioned whether the gender-affirming care pathway results in better mental health outcomes for those who progress to transition at all. This is in line with the world’s most robust study to date on the issue, published in the journal BMJ Mental Health last month by Finnish researchers. The study analysed the mental health outcomes of all of the 2083 young people referred to its gender service between 1996 and 2019. It found that although the proportion of suicides was higher in the gender-referred group of young people versus a control group, after specialist-level psychiatric treatment was controlled for, neither all-cause nor suicide mortality differed between the two groups.

The paper concluded: “clinical gender dysphoria does not appear to be predictive of all-cause nor suicide mortality when psychiatric treatment history is accounted for”.

The RCH has been approached for comment in the wake of the NHS announcement, as have the other two big prescribers of hormone drugs to children, the Perth Children’s Hospital and the Queensland Children’s Hospital, whose gender clinic is currently subject to a state review.




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80104e No.20565278

File: ed965de27175f25⋯.jpg (286.93 KB,2048x1536,4:3,Stella_Assange_at_the_Fore….jpg)

Stella Assange begs Anthony Albanese to pressure Americans to drop Julian Assange case


Julian Assange’s wife has called on Prime Minister Anthony Albanese to “bring it up a notch” and publicly call for the release of the WikiLeaks founder amid fears that the United States government could secretly extradite him across the Atlantic on a military jet.

Stella Assange said that for several years Mr Albanese has been saying the case should be brought to an end, but she said that his language was ambiguous.

In response to a question from The Australian at a Foreign Press Association event in central London on Wednesday Mrs Assange said: “The terms he uses are still quite ambiguous and I would like to see a much clearer statement from the Prime Minister that Julian has to be released.”

She added: “Enough is enough, he’s been saying that for three years, you have to bring that up a notch and of course he has the backing of the Australian people and the Australian public to say it clearly now: that Julian has to be released; he needs to be released now.”

Assange, 52, is currently a remand prisoner in the high security Belmarsh prison on the outskirts of London and is awaiting a decision from the High Court whether he has grounds to launch a further appeal against his extradition to the United States.

The United States wants to try Assange on 17 spy charges and one of computer hacking in relation to hundreds of thousands of documents he released on WikiLeaks in 2010 in relation to the Iraq war, and military documents on the Afghanistan war.

Mrs Assange said if the judges won’t allow any further appeals, the only recourse is for Assange to apply to the European Court of Human Rights for a rarely granted emergency injunction.

Mrs Assange fears that the United States may extradite her husband without warning in secrecy and darkness without any time to act.

In one other case, an extradition from Britain to the United States, the US marshals took the individual within 24 hours.

“They weren’t taken to Heathrow or on a commercial flight, they weren’t where unions could take some kind of action, they were taken onto a US airfield and flown on a military jet to the United States.”

There are more than half a dozen US bases in England including two major air strips at Lakenheath and Mildenhall.

Mrs Assange said: “The show would be on the other end, it would be done in secrecy and darkness. It would be done without any time to react, the kind of show would happen once he was in Virginia in United States custody.”

She is hopeful that the British judges would announce their decision in a courtroom and that she would be given two day’s notice of such an announcement.

She said the US president Joe Biden had the authority to drop the case against her husband.

“He could do that right now’’, adding “I don’t think dropping the case against Julian would anger the voters, it would anger the intelligence community”.

She said that Australia was in a position where it “could push harder” in discussions with the Americans.

“My understanding is it comes up in meetings, but to what extent the prime minister is pushing, I don’t know and of course Australia is an important strategic partner of the United States. It is not in a position of being obsequious, it is a vital partner in the United States relationship in the Indo-Pacific and AUKUS. The Australian government could push harder.”


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80104e No.20565284

File: 559188fdc956e51⋯.jpg (564.47 KB,2048x1366,1024:683,Foreign_Affairs_Minister_P….jpg)



Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi to meet Penny Wong in Canberra

Andrew Tillett - Mar 14, 2024

Foreign Minister Penny Wong will press her Chinese counterpart, Wang Yi, to remove Beijing’s remaining trade sanctions on Australian exports and the need to prevent conflict in the region when she hosts him in Canberra on Wednesday.

Two days after China flagged it would remove crippling tariffs on Australian wine exports, Senator Wong confirmed she would host Mr Wang for the Seventh Australia-China Foreign and Strategic Dialogue. Mr Wang will also meet Prime Minister Anthony Albanese.

Senator Wong is also expected to raise human rights and protest the jailing of Chinese-Australian pro-democracy blogger Yang Hengjun in her meeting with Mr Wang.

It will be the first visit by a Chinese foreign minister to Australia since Mr Wang’s 2017 trip. The dialogue was last held in Beijing in December 2022 during Senator Wong’s ice-breaking visit to the Chinese capital after years of tense relations.

“Dialogue is central to a constructive relationship with China and to supporting regional peace and stability,” Senator Wong said.

“Australia’s approach is consistent; we seek to co-operate with China where we can, disagree where we must, and engage in our national interest.

“It’s Australia’s view that a stable bilateral relationship would enable both countries to pursue respective national interests if we navigate our differences wisely.”

Opposition Leader Peter Dutton welcomed the visit but added Australia needed to stand up for its best interests.

“It’s important for us to do whatever we can to build a relationship with big trading nations,” he said.

“We need to make sure that we can keep peace and stability in our region, and we need to make sure that we’re honest with friends, and those that we need to have an honest conversation with where our interests diverge. I think it’s important for us to be open and frank in those conversations.”

With growing tensions in the South China Sea between the Philippines and China, as well as the risk of conflict with the US over Taiwan, Senator Wong used a speech on the sidelines of the ASEAN summit in Melbourne last week to step up calls for “preventative architecture” to avoid war.

While not naming China, she warned about “destabilising, provocative and coercive actions”.

China’s Commerce Ministry issued a draft determination on Tuesday night indicating it would remove tariffs of up to 220 per cent on Australian wine. The tariffs are expected to be abolished by the end of the month.

The tariffs, imposed by Beijing as part of a campaign against Australian exporters as bilateral ties soured, crippled an industry that had been worth $1.1 billion in annual sales.

Beef from eight abattoirs and lobsters remain the only commodities still affected by China’s trade sanctions.

However, efforts to stabilise ties between Beijing and Canberra suffered a setback in February when Dr Yang was handed a suspended death sentence after five years in detention on vague national security charges.

Senator Wong described the sentence as “appalling” and vowed to push for more lenient treatment for Dr Yang, whose health is ailing, according to family members.

Australia-China Relations Institute director James Laurenceson said Mr Wang would push for more concrete bilateral initiatives with Australia, but “I’m not sure if they’re going to get any”.

“The Yang Hengjun verdict has shrunk the domestic political space,” he said.

Asked about the looming end of wine tariffs, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman said on Wednesday night that China and Australia had engaged in dialogue and consultation for some time to address each other’s concerns and improve bilateral relations.

“China stands ready to continue stepping up dialogue and co-operation with Australia under the principles of mutual respect, equality, mutual benefit, and seeking common ground while shelving differences so as to promote the steady and sound growth of China-Australia relations,” he said.


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80104e No.20565302

File: 7518308d4c8761a⋯.jpg (853.79 KB,2048x1152,16:9,A_national_inquiry_into_tr….jpg)

File: 2dcdca761d92eb5⋯.jpg (161.15 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Child_psychiatrist_Jillian….jpg)

File: 3a5aaa767d72325⋯.jpg (1.69 MB,1263x3806,1263:3806,Call_for_Submissions_Curre….jpg)


AHRC transgender rights inquiry ‘biased, waste of taxpayer funds’: experts



A national inquiry into trans­gender human rights focusing on “anti-trans mobilisation” and “disinformation” has been ­branded a “serious misuse of taxpayer funds” by experts concerned it fails to balance the rights of transgender people with the rights of women and girls.

Specialists and lobby groups have also flagged a possible “bias” exhibited in the Australian Human Rights Commission’s ­inquiry because it restricts submissions to experts “in trans and gender diverse matters”.

As part of the inquiry, the commission will probe “discrimination, harassment, vilification and violence” levelled at trans and gender diverse (TGD) Australians, and investigate “extremism and radicalisation”.

The inquiry, which will also examine how “education, employment, healthcare, housing, migration, service provision and the law” affect transgender Australians, is open for submissions but will only accept the opinions of experts “in TGD matters”.

Senior Queensland child psychiatrist Jillian Spencer said the inquiry fails to focus on how the rights of transgender people ­intersect with the rights of women and children.

“All they seem to want is for the transgender community to voice any bad experiences they’ve had, and they don’t want to look at the whole rights issue for the whole of the community,” she said.

Dr Spencer made headlines last year when she was stood down from Queensland Children’s Hospital because of her concerns about the treatment of children with gender dysphoria, and after voicing opposition to gender affirming care – a largely contested medical approach in which a child’s perceived gender is unquestioningly endorsed by doctors.

In her submission to the inquiry, Dr Spencer said one of the greatest threats to Australians experiencing gender dysphoria was gender-affirming care.

“Some doctors providing the affirmation model lack the clinical skills to successfully engage a young person in therapy to help them explore and overcome their gender dysphoria,” she wrote.

“These unskilled health professionals instead collude with the young person to ignore the underlying issues driving the gender dysphoria and they sell their patient a pretend solution of body modification.”

The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists at the end of last year became the first medical body in the country to decline to endorse gender­ affirming care as the key intervention for children who ­believe they may be transgender, reflecting an increasingly cautious approach in some European countries amid a cited lack of evidence for the medical pathway.


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80104e No.20565304

File: c1ac4abe6153cfb⋯.jpg (218.43 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Trans_activists_near_Parli….jpg)

File: 5e5c0351c0e9772⋯.jpg (299.44 KB,2048x2731,2048:2731,Professor_Patrick_Parkinso….jpg)



Christian Schools Australia ­director of public policy Mark Spencer said the AHRC inquiry was an “activist discussion” ­attempting to “shut down debate around what is in the best interests of young people”. “The concerning element of the inquiry is its skewed focus, only looking at threats to one small group, which is then exacerbated by the gatekeeping around who they will take submissions from,” he said.

Emeritus professor Bronwyn Winter suggested the inquiry exhibited a “bias” because it “explicitly talks about anti-trans mobilisation and restricts calls for submissions to certain groups”. She accused the AHRC of “pre-determining an outcome by saying there are these threats”.

The Free Speech Union of Australia wrote to the AHRC and commissioner Lorraine Finlay this week claiming the inquiry was not “neutrally worded”. “It appears that those with gender critical views are being cast as spreading misinformation, being extremists and even violating human rights,” the letter reads.

University of Queensland law professor Patrick Parkinson said the inquiry’s terms of reference “nail the AHRC’s colours firmly to an ideological mast” and indicate the commission has aligned with “particularly active and powerful lobby groups”.

“To launch an inquiry which is intended to gather evidence to support the claims and talking points of one lobby group is in my view a serious misuse of taxpayer funds,” he said.

Transcend Australia CEO Jeremy Wiggins, however, welcomed the inquiry, saying there “is significant evidence that tells us that trans and gender diverse Australians experience disproportionate rates of discrimination, violence and abuse”.

“All Australians deserve to live their lives with safety, dignity and respect and no minority group should be under threat,” he said.

“We hope that this process will better inform governments, human rights groups and civil society organisations about the real and present dangers faced by trans and gender diverse people and their families in their everyday lives and lead to a set of recommendations on how to increase protections and manage the actual threats.”

In a statement, the AHRC said the aim of the inquiry was to “ensure a comprehensive understanding of the challenges to the full enjoyment of human rights by trans and gender diverse individuals and to identify strategies for addressing them”.

“The project scope is to ensure the focus remains on objective analysis and safeguard the integrity of the project’s findings. This is due to the nature of the debate surrounding trans and gender ­diverse people’s rights,” the statement reads.

“Demonstrated experience and in-depth understanding of these issues is crucial due to the complexity of the subject matter.”



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71025d No.20570344

File: d628ab04a7efd6c⋯.png (687.09 KB,636x628,159:157,ClipboardImage.png)

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80104e No.20570374

File: 8c23b0fb6274377⋯.jpg (1.43 MB,5019x3346,3:2,Foreign_Minister_Penny_Won….jpg)


Australia to resume funding for UN aid agency

David Crowe and Olivia Ireland - March 15, 2024


Australia will restore a $6 million funding pledge to the peak United Nations body that helps the Palestinian people in Gaza after a seven-week suspension due to claims that some of the agency’s staff took part in the Hamas terrorist attack on Israeli civilians last October.

Foreign Minister Penny Wong said the funding would be released under “stringent conditions” in a new agreement with the United Nations Relief and Works Agency with tougher controls to ensure staff neutrality in the conflict between Hamas and Israel.

“The best available current advice from agencies and the Australian government lawyers is that UNRWA is not a terrorist organisation, and that existing and additional safeguards sufficiently protect Australian taxpayer funding,” she said.

But the decision provoked swift criticism from Jewish community groups who believe UNRWA facilities are being used by Hamas, that some of the UN agency’s workers joined the attacks on Israel and that aid intended for civilians was being commandeered by Hamas.

Opposition foreign affairs spokesman Simon Birmingham said the decision was “risky and reckless” because of the longstanding concerns about the UN body and the fact that the United States was yet to end its pause on funding.

The conflict in Gaza has displaced most of the enclave’s 2.3 million people, with chaotic scenes and deadly incidents taking place during aid distributions as desperately hungry people scramble for food.

At least 29 Palestinians were killed while awaiting aid in two separate Israeli attacks in the Gaza Strip on Thursday, the Gaza Health Ministry said. Israel’s military denied attacking aid centres, describing the reports as false.

In Deir Al-Balah, in central Gaza, an Israeli missile hit a house on Thursday, killing nine people, according to a Reuters report citing Palestinian medics. Residents said Israeli aerial and ground bombardments persisted overnight across the enclave, including in Rafah in the south, where over a million displaced people are sheltering.

The end of the Australian funding pause, which began on January 27, will be backed by separate moves to send a Royal Australian Air Force C-17A aircraft to deliver 140 aerial delivery parachutes for aid drops on Gaza by Jordan and the United Arab Emirates.

The government will also give $4 million to UNICEF, the UN agency that helps children, to offer help to Palestinians, as well as offering $2 million to the UN humanitarian and reconstruction coordinator for Gaza to help deliver aid.

The moves will take Australian aid to $52.5 million since the crisis began on October 7.

Australia paused the $6 million in additional funding to UNRWA after Israel claimed some of the agency’s workers had taken part in the October 7 attacks, in which Hamas killed more than 1200 Israeli people and took another 250 hostage. Hamas is listed as a terrorist organisation by Australian authorities.

Israel claimed that at least a dozen UNRWA workers joined the October 7 attacks and that more than 1400 of the agency’s employees were active members of Hamas or Palestinian Islamic Jihad, but these claims have been the subject of fierce disputes.

“Of the 12 people implicated, UNRWA immediately identified and terminated the contracts of 10, another two are confirmed dead,” the UN said on February 8, while promising an investigation by the UN’s Office of Internal Oversight Services.


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80104e No.20570379

File: 751fe5a9ae1df7c⋯.jpg (2.15 MB,5760x3840,3:2,Displaced_Palestinians_rec….jpg)



Wong has been waiting on the outcome of the UN investigation into the matter, but said on Friday it was time to release the Australian money because of the undertakings from UNRWA and the fact that other countries chose to end their funding suspensions.

Sweden and Canada ended their funding pauses last week, while the European Union said two weeks ago that it would proceed with the first tranche of €50 million ($83 million) for the agency this year out of €82 million ($135 million) promised for 2024.

Wong said the commitments from the UN agency would give Australia greater confidence about the neutrality of its staff and supply of its aid to people in need.

“The plan includes strengthened internal controls to ensure its neutrality, including rigorous requirements of staff and updated reports to donors,” she said.

The foreign minister emphasised that UNRWA was the only agency capable of delivering enough aid in Gaza to help the Palestinian people during the conflict.

“I know that there are people starving in Gaza. I know that the European Union and Canada have determined to unpause [their funding],” she said.

“I know that UNRWA is critical to providing this assistance to people who are on the brink of starving.”

The Australia Palestine Advocacy Network’s president Nasser Mashni welcomed Wong’s announcement as he said it had been distressing when funding was frozen.

“It’s heartening to hear the Australian Government publicly recognise the integrity of UNRWA and to acknowledge the agency’s vital and ongoing humanitarian effort in Gaza and its support of Palestinian refugees across the region,” he said.

The Australian National Imams Council also welcomed the decision and said UNRWA was making a critical difference while Israel continued its “unrelenting and brutal campaign” against civilians in Gaza.

The Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council said funding for needy Palestinians should be supplied urgently, but not through UNRWA because of the evidence that it employed terrorists.

“UNRWA does not promote the Australian government’s vision of two states living in peace, but has instead long been a significant barrier to achieving this goal and needs to be phased out as soon as possible,” said AIJAC executive director Colin Rubenstein.

Executive Council of Australian Jewry president Daniel Aghion said the government needed to find another way to feed the people of Gaza.

“Our community favours the provision of aid to civilians in Gaza who are in desperate need, but we are totally opposed to the use of UNRWA as an agency for delivering that aid,” Aghion said.

Birmingham questioned whether Wong could rely on the assurances from UNRWA about its neutrality when Australia could have waited for the end of the investigation and worked on concert with the US.

“Penny Wong should be releasing the advice that she’s relied upon – she should be detailing the assurances she’s had,” he said.

“By acting out of step with the US, we are failing to take advantage of the type of leverage that could get more effective outcomes.”


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80104e No.20570394

File: ddc2a7d9bf7eba6⋯.jpg (580.51 KB,2968x1979,2968:1979,Anthony_Albanese_and_Joe_B….jpg)

File: df53deee270af08⋯.jpg (2.1 MB,3600x2652,300:221,Australia_will_buy_up_to_f….jpg)


‘Too big to fail’: US insists AUKUS deal is not sub par

Farrah Tomazin - March 15, 2024


Washington: The Biden administration has assured Australia that the US remains strongly committed to the AUKUS military pact after a contentious decision to halve American submarine production raised alarms about the future of the agreement.

Three months after legislation to help Australia acquire nuclear-propelled submarines finally passed in Washington, the US Navy this week proposed removing an attack submarine from its 2025 spending plan, in a tacit recognition that American shipbuilding yards are struggling with the pace of producing and maintaining the national fleet.

The proposed budget cut prompted fears about the viability of AUKUS, which was designed by the US, Australia and the UK to safeguard the Indo-Pacific from the growing threat of China, but requires the US maintain a production rate of 2.33 submarines a year to sell any subs to Australia.

Former Liberal prime minister Malcolm Turnbull said Australia had been “mugged by reality” over the deal; ALP activist group Labor Against War called on the Albanese government to freeze earmarked AUKUS payments underwriting US shipyards; and Democrat congressman Joe Courtney warned the proposed cut could have a “profound impact on both countries’ navies” if approved.

In the face of the backlash, the Biden administration has sought to assuage Australia’s concerns about the deal and insists it remains a reliable partner to deliver on the pact.

“I can tell you that AUKUS is one of the transformative agreements,” Richard Verma, the administration’s deputy secretary of state for management and resources, told this masthead. “We are very proud to be strongly supporting it and moving forward with it.”

Asked to explain the proposed cut, considering America’s concerns over China’s rise in the Indo-Pacific, he said the budget simply “reflects kind of the pace and scope and scale that all sides have agreed to” – a reference to the long-term nature of the multibillion-dollar plan – and that he had seen “only an incredible enthusiasm and commitment from our State Department, DoD [Department of Defence] and the larger technology community”.


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80104e No.20570400

File: 1f70e34f1e334ae⋯.jpg (381.36 KB,2000x1333,2000:1333,Prime_Minister_Anthony_Alb….jpg)

File: 04514b20acc4101⋯.jpg (992.36 KB,3380x2248,845:562,Then_prime_minister_Malcol….jpg)



It’s a year since President Joe Biden, Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak gathered in San Diego to announce the optimal pathway for AUKUS.

Under the deal, the US has agreed to sell at least three Virginia-class boats to Australia to fill a “capability gap” before specially designed nuclear-powered submarines are operational from the 2040s.

Part of the agreement also involves Australia spending $3 billion to boost US shipyards so Virginia-class submarines can arrive in the early 2030s – an investment that Courtney described as “pretty amazing”.

“That has never happened before, where another country has expressed their willingness to make that move because they correctly see that, you know, for this to succeed, we have to expand capacity,” said the congressman, a staunch ally of Australia from Connecticut, where the Virginia-class subs will be built.

Others, however, are far less optimistic.

“We are providing billions of dollars to the US, have given up an independent foreign policy and made Australia a parking lot for US weapons,” Greens Senator David Shoebridge wrote on X. “In exchange, we get nothing. Nothing but a big target and empty pockets.”

Turnbull, an architect of an earlier French submarine plan dumped by his successor Scott Morrison in favour of the AUKUS deal, also raised concerns.

He noted that unless the US doubles its rate of production of Virginia class submarines, it won’t have capacity to supply Australia with the subs promised, let alone maintain the numbers needed for its own navy.

“What does that mean for Australia? It means because the Morrison government, adopted by Albanese, has basically abandoned our sovereignty in terms of submarines, we are completely dependent on what happens in the United States as to whether we get them now,” he told ABC radio.

“This is really a case of us being mugged by reality,” he added.

Australia’s concerns over the AUKUS deal reverberated on Thursday (Friday AEDT) at a seminar with Courtney and Australia’s deputy chief of mission, ambassador Paul Myler, to mark the first anniversary of the San Diego announcement.

Asked by an audience member about Turnbull’s comments, Myler said: “I would never not take seriously views expressed by former prime ministers of Australia, but I think we are very confident of the future of AUKUS”.

“This was a ‘no fail’ exercise for these political leaders,” Myler added.

“If you stand up and say ‘we are going to do this’ and then you fail to do it, you massively undermine your deterrence credibility going forward.

“This is one of those exercises that is too big to fail from a deterrence perspective, so we’ve all got to put our shoulder to the wheel to make sure it succeeds.”


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80104e No.20570434

File: d042b9fec14f8e5⋯.mp4 (15.92 MB,640x360,16:9,_Incorrect_Democratic_Cong….mp4)



US congressman Joe Courtney hits back at Malcolm Turnbull’s claim Australia was ‘mugged by reality’ on AUKUS deal: 'Never stepped foot in that shipyard'

Laurence Karacsony - March 15, 2024


US Democratic Congressman Joe Courtney has hit back at former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull’s claim Australia was "mugged by reality" over the production of submarine deliverables from the United States as part of the tripartite AUKUS deal with the UK and the US.

Mr Turnbull claimed on Wednesday that Australia was now at the mercy of its ally after the US announced it will halve the number of submarines it will build in 2025.

The Pentagon's budget draft request calls for just one Virginia-class submarine to be built next year, potentially jeopardising plans for the US to provide three of the models to Australia by the early 2030s.

"This is really a case of us being mugged by reality. I mean, there's a lot of AUKUS cheerleaders, and anyone that has any criticism of AUKUS is almost described as being unpatriotic. We've got to be realistic here," Mr Turnbull said.

Speaking to Sky News host Peter Stefanovic on Friday morning, Mr Courtney shot down Mr Turnbull's concerns, claiming the deal was in a "healthy" position.

"He has never stepped foot in that shipyard, he’s never gone to the job creating programs where we are building up capacity every single day, so I think that the reality is not one that’s mugging anyone. I think the reality is positive," Mr Courtney said.

"We're going to christen a submarine this Saturday, the USS Iowa. We commissioned two submarines last year, and also in December the USS Iowa is going to be released into the fleet.

"So Mr Turnbull’s comment that the industrial base is just sort of seizing up is factually incorrect. That's not happening."

Mr Turnbull said the US' decision to halve production of the Virginia class would make the country less likely to sell submarines to Australia.

"They're not only producing about half as many submarines as they believe they need, but they also are not able to maintain the submarines they have," Mr Turnbull said on Wednesday.

"The reality is the Americans are not going to make their submarine deficit worse than it is already by giving or selling submarines to Australia and the AUKUS legislation actually sets that out quite specifically."


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80104e No.20570442

File: a6c9b66d1ea0a51⋯.jpg (36.09 KB,650x366,325:183,Former_Prime_Minister_Malc….jpg)

File: 56cc9b037d97a43⋯.jpg (37.05 KB,650x366,325:183,US_Congressman_Joe_Courtne….jpg)



The US has aimed to produce 2.33 submarines annually, but is currently building about 1.2 to 1.3 per year due to labour shortages and supply chain complications, with the Navy not expected to reach its two-per-year goal by 2029.

Mr Courtney said the proposed cut was about $2 billion, but the US had already spent almost $1 billion on the "exact" submarine the budget proposed to cut funding on.

"For a lot of people looking at the sub cost we already have, in that vessel, that's going to be a real problem for the Navy and the administration when they come to present the budget at full committee," he said.

Mr Courtney said despite the spending cap due to the Fiscal Responsibility Act passed last May, the notion that going back on the rate of production while increasing production cadence was one he "fundamentally" rejected.

"I think it sends a bad signal," he said.

"This is a proposed budget. This is not the final word."

When asked if there was a risk of being “mugged by reality” over an apparent change to funding, Mr Courtney said shipbuilding was a “long game” with the first burst of funding beginning two years ago.

"If you ask me that question four or five years from now and there’s a continued disruption, in terms of the production, in a reduction of the fleet size, then that’s a big problem," Mr Courtney said.

"But we’re far from a place where AUKUS is even in critical condition. It’s still healthy with lots of bipartisan support, I know that by just talking to my colleagues, even in the last few days or so."

Mr Courtney explained when the president submits a budget, under the US Constitution it is Congress who make the final decision, citing the reversal of former president Donald Trump’s aim to cut production of submarines in 2020.

Mr Courtney went back further, to the Obama administration in 2013, when Congress challenged a similar proposal, delaying the development of Ohio-class nuclear powered submarines by two years.

The US congressman said it would “absolutely” happen again for the reduction of funding to submarines would be overturned.

"The hearing process is yet to begin, the mark up process for the defence bill is yet to begin," Mr Courtney said.

"The reaction that I heard on the floor when I was there yesterday talking to both Democratic and Republican … they think that its important that we keep the same shipbuilding plan which was on the table last December.

"AUKUS is going to prevail."


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80104e No.20570458

File: 085cefd0f7c9a0a⋯.jpg (2.32 MB,3853x2569,3853:2569,Thomas_accepts_the_winning….jpg)


Women athletes launch landmark case against transgender inclusion

Sixteen student athletes making claim against National Collegiate Athletics Association after some were forced to share a changing room with Lia Thomas, a transgender swimmer who had “full male genitalia”

Matt Lawton - March 14 2024


A group of 16 American women have launched a landmark legal case against the National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA) over the participation of transgender athletes in their sports, with their lawyer stating that the organisation has “institutionalised cheating and discrimination” against them.

With a particular focus on Lia Thomas, the transgender swimmer who claimed a NCAA women’s title in March 2022, the group has filed its 156-page claim at the United States District Court in the northern district of Atlanta, Georgia.

It was in Atlanta that the NCAA Division 1 swimming championships took place, with the fact that about 300 women shared a dressing room with Thomas - at the time with “full male genitalia” - cited in the complaint. Thomas claimed the NCAA title in the women’s 500-yard freestyle event, with two Olympic silver medal-winners - Emma Weyant and Erica Sullivan - finishing second and third.

The Olympians are not among the complainants but Bill Bock, formerly general counsel at the United States Anti-Doping Agency and the lead attorney in their cases against Lance Armstrong and Alberto Salazar, is acting for the group, which also includes female athletes from volleyball, tennis and track and field. Bock has told The Times that the “discrimination against female student athletes should disqualify the NCAA from being a sport governing body”.

It represents an unprecedented action against the organisation that oversees college sport in America, and could lead to substantial claims for damages as well as a change in NCAA rules on the participation of transgender athletes in female categories, which have been tightened since 2022. The women also want to be awarded what they consider to be their rightful placing in their respective events which, if successful, would lead to Thomas being disqualified. Central to their claim is an accusation that the NCAA has made a “radical departure from Title IX’s original meaning”, which is the federal civil rights law that prohibits sex-based discrimination in any school or education facility that receives government funding.

In January 2022 the NCAA updated its transgender policies, stating that it had aligned itself to policies in “the Olympic movement”. For participation in 2022, transgender athletes were required to have had one year of testosterone suppression treatment, documenting a one-time serum testosterone level that fell below the maximum allowable level for the sport in which they were competing. The documentation relevant to this had to be submitted within four weeks prior to the selection date for their championship.

From August 1 this year, participation in NCAA sports will require transgender athletes to provide documentation no less than twice annually, including at least once within four weeks of competition, that meets the sport-specific standard.

Olympic sports such as swimming and athletics now exclude transgender athletes, who have experienced male puberty, but the claim filed to the court challenges whether the NCAA policies are indeed fully aligned. The complainants claim the NCAA is only applying one out of multiple criteria, with shorter suppression periods at lower testosterone amounts. “Their form only requires an athlete to provide one testosterone result 28 days before competition, and that is not best practice as demonstrated by multiple international federations,” said Bock who this week resigned from his voluntary position as a member of the NCAA Division 1 Committee.

“It is time for each of the NCAA’s sponsors, and for all sports organisations that care about fair competition and safe sport, to recognise the NCAA has institutionalised cheating and discrimination against women and must be reformed.

“We need to hear them speak up for women and disassociate themselves from the NCAA and its conduct.”

The NCAA has been approached for comment.


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80104e No.20570460

File: 4227eb2754aa9dd⋯.jpg (1.84 MB,3000x2000,3:2,Gaines_who_finished_tied_f….jpg)



While four of the women have chosen to remain anonymous for fear of possible repercussions, swimmer Riley Gaines is among those to have put their name to the complaint. She tied for fifth place with Thomas in the 200-yard freestyle event in Atlanta in 2022, and has become a voice in the US against the inclusion of transgender women in female sports categories.

In the complaint for damages, it is detailed that “without notice to female swimmers competing in the 2022 NCAA Championships, the NCAA and . . .one or more other state actors or actors with apparent state authority … changed the designation of the locker rooms to be used by the women swimmers … to ‘unisex’ locker rooms.

“And directed women swimmers and teams that Thomas was entitled to use all designated locker rooms allocated to the women swimmers and teams.

“This change was made so that Thomas, a fully grown adult male with full male genitalia, would use the same locker rooms to be used by more than 300 female student-athletes, depriving the female student-athletes of sex-separated women’s locker room facilities and bathroom and restroom facilities where their right to bodily privacy could be protected, exposing the women to shock, humiliation, and embarrassment in violation of their constitutional right to bodily privacy.”

The complaint adds that five of the 16 plaintiffs were impacted by this arrangement, adding that they are “entitled to declaratory relief, compensation, punitive damages and attorneys’ fees”.

Speaking to The Times, Bock added: “What the NCAA allowed to happen to hundreds of female athletes in locker rooms in Atlanta two years ago was nothing less than exploitation and a disgraceful violation of women’s rights to bodily privacy.

“The NCAA’s president, Charlie Baker, and university presidents and athletic directors ought to be called to testify before Congress tomorrow.

“The unfair advantage the NCAA gives to male athletes to compete against women is as bad as any doping case I have been involved in.

“The real March Madness [a reference to the annual NCAA basketball championship] is how the NCAA sold out hundreds of female student athletes.”

Reka Gyorgy, who competed against Thomas for Virginia Tech University, is quoted in the complaint, saying: “I swam the 500 free at NCAA’s on March 17, 2022, where I got 17th, which means I didn’t make it back to the finals.

“I’m a fifth year senior. This is my last college meet ever and I feel frustrated. It feels like that final spot was taken away from me because of the NCAA’s decision to let someone who is not a biological female compete. It hurts me, my team and other women in the pool.”


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12743b No.20570471

File: fc7b7638e5a3aa0⋯.jpg (129.6 KB,750x696,125:116,1710494651150581.jpg)

Massive nationwide outage of McDonald's payment processing services in Australia.

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80104e No.20570486

File: 1120d86bcd2d07b⋯.jpg (190.06 KB,1440x953,1440:953,Ghislaine_Maxwell_daughter….jpg)

File: 81a9772edf3bc4a⋯.jpg (155.31 KB,1440x960,3:2,This_photo_provided_by_the….jpg)


Ghislaine Maxwell’s lawyer tell appeals judges that Jeffrey Epstein’s Florida plea deal protects her

LARRY NEUMEISTER - March 13, 2024

NEW YORK (AP) — Imprisoned British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell’s lawyer asked a federal appeals court Tuesday to toss out her sex trafficking conviction and 20-year prison sentence, saying Jeffrey Epstein’s 2007 non-prosecution deal with a U.S. attorney in Florida should have prevented her prosecution.

Attorney Diana Fabi Samson’s argument was repeatedly challenged by one judge on the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals before the three-judge panel reserved decision.

Lawyers for Maxwell are challenging her December 2021 conviction on multiple grounds, but the only topic at oral arguments was whether the deal Epstein struck in Florida to prevent a federal case against him there also protected Maxwell in New York. Samson said it did. A prosecutor said it didn’t.

Maxwell, 62, is serving her sentence at a low-security federal prison in Tallahassee, Florida, where yoga, Pilates and movies are available.

Epstein’s lawyers made a similar argument about the force of his non-prosecution deal in Florida after his July, 2019, sex trafficking arrest in Manhattan. But the legal question became moot in his case after he took his own life a month later in a federal lockup as he awaited trial.

Maxwell was arrested a year later and convicted at trial after several women who were sexually abused by Epstein testified that she played a crucial role from 1994 to 2004 by recruiting and grooming teenage girls for her former boyfriend to abuse.

Maxwell once had a romantic relationship with Epstein, but she later became his employee at his five residences, including a Manhattan mansion, the Virgin Islands and a large estate in Palm Beach, Florida.

Samson insisted that a provision of Epstein’s non-prosecution agreement that protected potential coconspirators should have prevented prosecutors from charging her 13 years later.

Circuit Judge Raymond Lohier repeatedly seemed to poke holes in her argument that “all U.S. attorneys have absolute authority bind other districts” when they make deals with defendants. He noted that the Florida agreement identified several individuals besides Epstein who should have protected under the deal, but Maxwell was not among them.

He said he reviewed the Department of Justice manual about non-prosecution agreements and “it suggests the opposite of what you just said.” Lohier said that each U.S. attorney’s office’s decisions could not require other offices to conform.

Samson countered that the manual was only advisory and “not a shield to allow the government to get out of its agreements made with defendants.”

She added: “Denying the viability of this agreement strikes a dagger in the heart of the trust between the government and its citizens regarding plea agreements.”

Arguing for the government, Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew Rohrbach responded to a question from Lohier by saying that he didn’t know of any deal made by one federal prosecutor’s office that required every other U.S. attorney to agree to abide by.

Attorney Sigrid McCawley, who represents trial witness Annie Farmer, said the appeals arguments Tuesday did nothing to change “the fact that she does not get a free pass and her conviction should be upheld.”

“It took far too many years for the Epstein survivors to get some small piece of deserved justice with Ghislaine Maxwell’s conviction and prison sentencing,” she said. Farmer, now a psychologist, testified at the trial and spoke at Maxwell’s sentencing about the abuse she experienced from Epstein and Maxwell.

The Associated Press does not identify people who say they were victims of sexual assault unless they have consented to being identified.


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80104e No.20575539

File: 5b6e364b928e7d2⋯.jpg (265.79 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Brittany_Higgins_outside_a….jpg)

File: 555f2339a28491d⋯.jpg (250.81 KB,2048x1152,16:9,David_Shiraz_and_Brittany_….jpg)

Judge asks whether Brittany Higgins should be recalled over $2.4m compo evidence



The judge in Bruce Lehrmann’s defamation case has sensationally asked whether Brittany Higgins should be recalled to give evidence about her $2.4m compensation payout, after the Ten Network suggested it would be unfair to her for the court to make findings about whether she had made false represent­ations to the commonwealth.

Justice Michael Lee emailed parties to the defamation case earlier this week after receiving a submission from Ten that allegations Ms Higgins had “committed a fraud on the common­wealth” should not be adjudi­cated in the case.

Mr Lehrmann’s lawyers had argued that Ms Higgins made 11 separate representations about her alleged rape in her settlement that were either false or contradicted by her own evidence in the defamation case.

Ms Higgins made false representation “for the purposes of securing a life-changing payment” and were a breach of the warranties made by her in the deed, Mr Lehrmann’s lawyers ­alleged.

Ten had argued it was not its responsibility to act in Ms Higgins’ interest over the allegations, but said Justice Lee “should not make very serious findings of the kind alleged against an unrepresented witness who has not been heard in respect of them”.

Justice Lee noted Ten’s submission seemed to suggest there would be a denial of procedural fairness if he “considered it necessary to make any finding as to whether false representations had been made in the deed because it is relevant to any general credit finding made in relation to Ms Higgins”.

In his email, released by the Federal Court on Friday, Justice Lee accepted he should not make any findings as to the legal characterisation of any false representations but wanted to know what Ten was suggesting if the submissions were about her ­credit as a witness. The judge expressed the view that recalling Ms Higgins was unnecessary but warned that “nothing in this email indicates a view, one way or another, as to the underlying merit of any credit submission based on the commonwealth deed”.

In response, Ten barrister Matt Collins KC said it would be “inappropriate for this court to make any finding as to the characterisation of Ms Higgins’ conduct contended for by Mr Lehrmann – in substance that she was prepared to tell lies, including elaborate lies, in respect of matters that she warranted to be true and correct with the intention of inducing the commonwealth of Australia to enter into the deed which provided for the payment of a life-changing settlement sum”.

“It would be extraneous to the determination of the issues in this case to make any findings as to the legal characterisation of any findings of any false representations in the deed (should they be made)”, Dr Collins argued.

The representations in the deed could only be considered “as part of an assessment of the ­general credit of Ms Higgins in the limited relevant sense, which is in short whether it discloses a preparedness to tell lies on solemn occasions that infects the court’s assessment of the evidence she gave in this proceeding”.

The majority of the inconsistent claims in the deed had been put to Ms Higgins in cross-­examination, so Ten did not consider it necessary to recall her to the witness box to provide her with procedural fairness, Dr Collins submitted.


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80104e No.20575542

File: 60176d339fd73d1⋯.jpg (215.06 KB,1769x995,1769:995,Bruce_Lehrmann_outside_cou….jpg)

File: ae71ecd120ba0c9⋯.jpg (199.73 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Justice_Michael_Lee.jpg)



Earlier this month, Mr Lehrmann’s lawyers set out a detailed comparison of the claims Ms Higgins made in the commonwealth deed with her evidence in the still-to-be-decided defamation case.

Among the claims made by Ms Higgins in the settlement deed, but disputed in a submission by Mr Lehrmann’s legal team, led by Steven Whybrow SC, were:

• That Mr Lehrmann got into Ms Higgins’ taxi on the night of the alleged rape without her agreement (she testified she had agreed).

• That he directed the cab to stop at Parliament House without her agreement (she gave evidence that she “just went along with it”);

• That he directed her to get out of the cab (she testified that “I don’t know why, but when it stopped I got out too”);

• That they didn’t speak on the Monday afterwards (they had coffee and exchanged emails).

Mr Lehrmann’s lawyers also point to claims made in the deed that have been strongly disputed in evidence, including that Ms Higgins told Fiona Brown – who was the chief of staff of Miss Higgins’ boss at the time, senator Linda Reynolds – that he had ­sexually assaulted her, an allegation that has always been vehemently denied by Ms Brown.

The settlement deed also stated Senator Reynolds did not ­engage with Ms Higgins at all during the election campaign. “She avoided (Ms Higgins) and made clear she did not want (Ms Higgins) attending events with her,” the settlement deed stated.

In fact, Ms Higgins was photographed seated next to Senator Reynolds during the election.

Giving evidence at the defamation trial, Ms Higgins said she was “accidentally” seated next to the then minister because she was one of the last to arrive.

The Albanese government paid Ms Higgins $2.445m in the settlement, which relied entirely on her version of events, after a single day ­of mediation that excluded evidence from Senator Reynolds.

Earlier this year, The Australian revealed that the National Anti-Corruption Commission was examining a complaint by Senator Reynolds against Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus over his handling of the Higgins settlement, to determine if an investigation should be launched.


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80104e No.20575568

File: 513a3c7d25ef991⋯.jpg (249.31 KB,2048x1152,16:9,The_Prime_Minister_Anthony….jpg)

File: 51d0869d34c3937⋯.jpg (267.48 KB,1500x1000,3:2,PM_Anthony_Albanese_says_A….jpg)



‘It’s a deal between countries, not a deal between individuals’: PM Anthony Albanese says AUKUS agreement has support required to survive another Trump presidency

Kathryn Bermingham - March 15, 2024

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese says the AUKUS agreement has the support required to survive a second Trump presidency, declaring “it’s a deal between countries, not a deal between individuals”.

Mr Albanese, Premier Peter Malinauskas and a host of industry leaders discussed their ideas for building a bigger, better South Australia at The Advertiser’s Future SA forum at SkyCity Adelaide on Friday.

In wide-ranging comments made during a speech and panel discussion, Mr Albanese said conversations around nuclear energy were “a distraction” and there was instead “certainty in investing in renewables”.

Mr Malinauskas said Victoria’s policy of shutting off gas connections to new homes was a “bad idea” and confirmed South Australia would not follow suit.

Asked by moderator David Penberthy whether the AUKUS deal would be threatened by a second Trump presidency, Mr Albanese said support had already been shored up.

“I think that it’s beyond question now,” he said.

“It did take effort, it was essentially an idea without a plan.

“That plan is now in place. It enjoys bipartisan support here and it enjoys bipartisan support in the US.”

Mr Malinauskas said news this week that the US Navy was halving its planned submarine production next year demonstrated why the AUKUS agreement was so committed to a fourth submarine production line.

“That (US) announcement shouldn’t undermine people’s confidence in the program, only enhance it,” he said.

“What the US is essentially acknowledging is that they can’t produce submarines at a pace fast enough to be able to meet their own needs, let alone everybody else’s.

“This argument that we can simply go buy submarines from some other country to meet our strategic purposes is just not true.

“So if we want to have the capacity to protect ourselves in the form of submarines, we have to build them here.”

Mr Albanese said the perception of South Australia in the eastern states had changed “massively”, after he was asked about views that South Australia had once been the “handout state”.

“I think people look at this state and they look at the state and they look at the opportunity that’s there and the focus over the subs deal and shipbuilding here, the focus on renewables,” he said.

“South Australia was ahead of every other state in terms of the transition that is occurring.”

In his earlier speech to guests, he spoke about the role emerging industries would play in reversing the state’s brain drain.

“You will be better positioned in the future to have not just people stay here but people come here,” he said.

He pointed out that South Australia punches “well above its weight” in cabinet representation at federal cabinet, naming Foreign Minister Penny Wong, Trade Minister Don Farrell, Health Minister Mark Butler and Social Services Minister Amanda Rishworth.

“South Australia was always in a position to have a really strong voice around the cabinet table and around the parliament as well,” he said.

Mr Malinauskas agreed the submarine program had already been transformative for the state and its people.

“One of the announcements that the federal government made that, just on its own, completely changes the lives of over 1000 young South Australians every year is the 1200 additional university places that are now coming our way exclusively to be able to accommodate the engineering capability that’s going to be required in South Australia for the submarine program,” he said.

But he said the state will approach the naval shipbuilding exercise not with a sense of entitlement but a sense of ambition.

“Because it is the most complex industrial undertaking this country has ever sought to achieve,” he said.

To begin the panel, the leaders were challenged to a quiz to test their knowledge on each other’s city.

Mr Albanese was able to identify Adelaide Oval and a frog cake but stumbled on the names of crows and power mascots Claude Crow and Tommy Thunda.

Mr Malinauskas picked the Harbour Bridge and identified Harry’s Cafe de Wheels, in Woolloomooloo, as a Sydney pie cart but could not name NRL team South Sydney Rabbitohs mascot Reggie Rabbit.


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80104e No.20575587

File: fe5d768334aaaea⋯.jpg (564.12 KB,3800x2280,5:3,The_wide_ranging_agreement….jpg)

Fiji to stick with China police deal after review, home affairs minister says

Pio Tikoduadua says agreement has been ‘restored’ after Fiji examined controversial deal that allows for police exchanges and intelligence sharing

Ivamere Nataro - 15 Mar 2024

Fiji will uphold a policing cooperation agreement with China after reviewing the deal, the country’s home affairs minister, Pio Tikoduadua, has confirmed, despite earlier concerns within the Pacific nation over the deal.

The controversial agreement was signed in 2011 when Fiji was under military rule. Under the deal, Fijian officers have been trained in China while Chinese police have been embedded in the Fijian force. Beijing has also provided hi-tech equipment including surveillance gear and drones.

The deal has been under review after Fiji’s prime minister, Sitiveni Rabuka, raised concerns last year over the countries’ differing values and judicial systems.

Tikoduadua said the review had been completed and Fiji would be sticking with Beijing.

“We are now back on the original police agreement [with China] – that has been restored, we had reviewed it for 12 months,” he said in an interview with the Guardian.

The agreement allows for co-operation in a range of areas including the exchange of intelligence, visits, training and the supply of equipment. For example, ahead of Fiji’s 2014 election, China provided vehicles, communications and surveillance equipment.

In the past, Chinese officers have been embedded in the Fiji police force. The home affairs minister said the two countries would decide how they implemented the agreement in the future – including any exchanges of personnel – but at present no Chinese officers were embedded in the force.

“There will only be Fijian officers training in China and no embedding of Chinese officers in the Fiji police force now,” Tikoduadua said.

Shortly after coming to power in December 2022, Rabuka told local media that he saw “no need” for the police agreement with China to continue. In June last year, prior to signing a defence agreement with New Zealand to strengthen military ties, Rabuka appeared to soften his position and said the agreement would be reviewed before any decision was made.

“We need to look at that again before we decide on whether we go backward or continue the way we have had in the past: cooperating with those that have similar democratic values and systems of legislation, law enforcement and so on,” Rabuka said at the time.

When asked by the Fiji Sun newspaper this week about the China policing deal, Rabuka said he had not received any updates from the home affairs minister in relation to the agreement.

A former senior officer in the Fiji police force has raised concerns with the method of training Fijian officers receive under the China deal, highlighting the differences in values and systems between the two countries.

“Current service in the Fiji police force is not working out right now because we had copied Singaporean and Chinese kind of system, which is not relevant,” Tevita Ralulu, who worked as a senior investigative officer in Suva, told the Guardian this week.

“We are supposed to have our own culture of service and to modify a system to suit the culture of people living in Fiji, that’s why the training done in China really didn’t work,” Ralulu said.

The acting commissioner of police, Juki Fong Chew, said the Fiji police force was fortunate to benefit from various forms of assistance from regional and international partners.

“The assistance ranges from police-to-police exchange programs, technical support, study and training opportunities, capacity building initiatives, coordination and cooperation efforts based on operational needs,” he said.

Pacific nations rely on support from international partners – notably Australia and New Zealand – to help resource their police forces. China’s role in security and defence includes funding the construction of a new police training centre in Samoa in 2016 and funding police headquarters in the Cook Islands. Other assistance from Beijing includes suppling vehicles, riot equipment and uniforms to the Vanuatu police, and vehicles to Papua New Guinea.

Last year, China and Solomon Islands signed a deal on police cooperation as the nations continued to deepen ties, and after sealing a security pact in 2022 which caused alarm in the US and some Pacific neighbours including Australia. Also in 2022, China attempted to forge a regional security pact with Pacific nations but failed to secure support.


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80104e No.20575610

File: 63ce442cee73f02⋯.mp4 (9.11 MB,960x540,16:9,Inside_Arkstone_Australia_….mp4)

File: 38dae8344b556e4⋯.jpg (73.63 KB,768x768,1:1,Wyong_man_Justin_Kenneth_R….jpg)

File: 08c4cb4ba5f712d⋯.png (538.36 KB,3000x1688,375:211,Op_Arkstone_infographic.png)

File: 2aede8673a2275f⋯.jpg (562.89 KB,882x802,441:401,Where_to_find_help_2024.jpg)

How two of Australia’s most vile pedophiles used childcare centre

Two of Australia’s most vile pedophiles are facing the prospect of decades in jail, as details of their crimes can be revealed for the first time.

Steve Zemek - March 15, 2024

WARNING: Graphic content.

The crimes of two of Australia’s most vile pedophiles who abused dozens of young victims in country NSW will learn their fates next month, as details of their heinous acts — including exploiting children through their access to a childcare facility — can be revealed for the first time.

The two men, who cannot be named due to a court order, faced Sydney’s Downing Centre District Court on Friday and are facing the prospect of being sentenced to decades in prison.

Their heinous crimes reverberated through the idyllic small country town where they lived after a major police investigation unmasked them as key players in a national pedophile ring.

They were arrested as part of Operation Arkstone, the country’s biggest ever law enforcement crackdown on online child abuse material networks.

Their crimes can be revealed for the first time after a court released documents, as the two men prepare to be sentenced by Judge Sarah Hopkins next month.

Many of the details of the case cannot be revealed, including the names of the men and the town where they lived during their offending, because of a court order.

In 2022, they both pleaded guilty to a mammoth list of charges.

TD, now 30, admitted to abusing 28 victims.

He pleaded guilty and is awaiting sentencing for more than 200 offences including multiple counts of sexual intercourse with a child, indecent assault, using a child to make child abuse material and using a carriage service to transmit child abuse material.

The younger of the two men, known as SG, pleaded guilty to abusing nine young victims.

SG, 25, pleaded guilty to more than 100 charges, including dozens of counts of sexual intercourse with a child and multiple counts of intentionally sexually touching a child and indecent assault.

According to court documents seen by NCA Newswire, TD began working at a regional childcare centre in 2017 after approaching management seeking employment.

After being hired as a casual worker, he was suspended after a child’s mother approached the centre expressing concerns about a complaint made by her son.

The complaint, that TD kissed the boy, was referred to police, and the man resigned in January 2019.

No charges were pursued at the time, however TD and his partner were arrested the following year.

When police searched TD’s electronic devices, they found child abuse images of the boy, as well as 15 other children from the centre.

Not only did the men film their abuse of their young victims, they shared their sick material with an online predator ring, which included Central Coast man Justin Radford.

When the Australian Federal Police were tipped off by overseas authorities, they raided Radford’s home and found electronic devices filled with vile child abuse material.

It set in train dozens of arrests under Operation Arkstone as detectives were able to identify and track down some of the country’s worst child sex offenders, including TD and SG.

Radford was jailed for 18 years after the former Nine Network tape library assistant pleaded guilty to 18 charges including sexually touching a child.

TD and SG were arrested, and during a search of their home officers found several devices belonging to TD, including a 500GB external hard drive and a Google phone, according to a statement of agreed facts tendered to the court,

The AFP found more than 23,000 videos and 152,000 images which were predominantly child abuse material, some of it self-produced, showing shocking exploitation and abuse of young children.

The material was found on TD’s phone under folders labelled “XXX” and “more boys”.

Descriptions of the videos and images are too vile to be published and often involved the men filming each other as they abused their young victims.

Together they communicated via Wickr using the usernames ‘randomacts123’ and ‘nocturnalking’.

Transcripts of their conversations are included in the court documents but are so depraved they cannot be published.

The two men appeared for a sentencing hearing before Judge Hopkins on Friday and will learn their fate when they are sentenced on April 24.


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80104e No.20580396

File: 0ee249ef6771026⋯.jpg (5.59 MB,8640x5760,3:2,Palestinians_are_fleeing_d….jpg)


‘We are delighted’: Government backflips on cancelled Gaza visas

Matthew Knott - March 17, 2024

Several Palestinians fleeing the war in Gaza who were devastated after their visas were cancelled while en route to Australia have again been granted permission to travel to the country, a move that has thrilled advocates in Australia.

Rasha Abbas, executive director of the Palestine Australia Relief and Action group, said eight of the 11 Palestinians her organisation was assisting had been told their cancelled visas had been reinstated.

“We are delighted and happy that they are able to travel to Australia,” Abbas said.

“We are working through booking the flights for them and we will work with the government on the process for the remaining visa holders.

“We are relieved the government has reinstated some of the visas – not all of them but the majority have been reinstated.”

Of the three people who had not had visas reinstated, Abbas said: “Hopefully we will have the same outcome for all of them.”

A government source, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed that several visa cancellations had been reversed to allow Palestinians to travel onwards to Australia after checks were completed.

Visas were cancelled in cases where individuals had left Gaza without explanation or where there had been a significant change in their circumstances, the source said.

Among Gazans who have had their visas reinstated is Cassandra, a mother from Khan Younis in southern Gaza whose case was highlighted by The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age last week.

Cassandra, who used a pseudonym to protect her identity, said that she and her children were allowed to board a flight from Cairo, with a stopover at another Middle Eastern airport, last week after being assured they were able to travel onwards to Australia.

After being told she could not board a flight for the final leg of her journey, she said she was given the option of sending her children, who are aged under 13, to Australia without any parental supervision.

All eventually boarded flights back to Cairo together, with the children in tears.

Cassandra said she was terrified about the future because her family’s residency permits in Egypt were due to expire in 45 days and they didn’t know if they would be able to return to Gaza.

Cassandra said she had spent thousands of dollars on visa applications and flights to Australia for her family, money she feared had been wasted.

A Palestinian man named Hani left stranded at Istanbul airport after having his visa cancelled while en route to Australia has not had his visa reinstated.

The Home Affairs Department had told applicants their visas had been cancelled because it believed they may wish to stay in Australia when their visas run out.

Speaking on the ABC’s Insiders program before news of the reversals was made public, opposition home affairs spokesman James Paterson suggested the Palestinians’ visas had been cancelled because of security concerns.

“They were granting visas to people that their own security advice now says they shouldn’t, and no wonder, because they were rushing them through so quickly,” Paterson said.

Abbas said the fact the government had reinstated the visas showed the Gazans in question did not pose a security risk to Australia and were simply desperate people fleeing a war zone.


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80104e No.20580414

File: 0174750e0aca0b0⋯.jpg (1.05 MB,3000x2000,3:2,TikTok_faces_new_calls_for….jpg)

File: 18cc78e9ae59049⋯.jpg (4.04 MB,4934x3289,4934:3289,Coalition_cybersecurity_an….jpg)

File: 498f2d86abf36aa⋯.jpg (1.52 MB,2400x3000,4:5,Lieutenant_General_Michell….jpg)

TikTok faces new calls for bans or curbs

David Crowe and Matthew Knott - March 17, 2024

Australia should pass new laws to curb the power of TikTok and protect the community from misinformation on the social media app, a leading security expert has warned after days of political dispute over Chinese control of the popular platform.

Cybersecurity expert Fergus Ryan said it had become “trivially easy” for TikTok to influence Australian debate because it had swollen to 8.5 million users in this country while officials considered how to act on its growing power.

The comments came after Coalition cybersecurity and home affairs spokesman James Paterson labelled TikTok a “bad-faith actor” and urged the government to join other countries in trying to remove the influence of the Chinese Communist Party on its operations.

Debate about TikTok has surged after the US House of Representatives voted last week to force the sale of the platform from its Chinese owner, a stance backed by President Joe Biden but opposed by former president Donald Trump, amid uncertainty about whether the Senate would agree to the bill and whether it could withstand a court challenge.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said on Saturday that the government had no plans to move beyond existing rules that forbid ministers and government officials using TikTok on phones with sensitive information.

“There are millions of Australians engaged in TikTok, who use it for communication with each other, and we think that you’ve got to think very carefully, in my view, before you start banning things as a first stop,” he said.

Paterson countered by arguing that security officials knew of problems with the platform and its owner, Chinese company ByteDance, because of the way data from Australian users could be sent to China and the potential for the platform to distort democratic debate.

Opposition Leader Peter Dutton stepped up his warnings about TikTok last week but did not call for the platform to be banned, arguing instead that it was the prime minister’s job to consider advice from security experts and make the right decision, whether that was a ban or another option.

Ryan, an analyst at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute who has written several papers on TikTok, said the platform had grown to such a scale that there was a case for legislation that singled it out for attention.

A key issue, he said, was the way ByteDance could harvest data from Australian users so it could “take the temperature” of national debate in real-time and make some content – including misinformation – more prominent to millions of users.

“That gives them an enormous amount of power if they wish to subtly promote or demote certain types of content on the app,” he said.

“When it comes to political discourse, they can essentially put their thumb on the scale to ensure that messages that the Chinese Communist Party supports are promoted, or things that they don’t wish to be promoted are demoted.

“It would be trivially easy for them to do that, and also extremely difficult for anyone to detect that it’s happening. So it’s a very insidious problem.”

In a sign of broader concerns about online influence, national cybersecurity co-ordinator Lieutenant General Michelle McGuinness said she believed security threats were far greater than shown by public data.

While a cyber incident is reported in Australia every six minutes, McGuinness said this was “just the tip of the iceberg” of the threat from attacks and other breaches.

She was appointed to the role last month after a 30-year career in the Australian Defence Force and a recent role as deputy director of the US Defence Intelligence Agency.

The Albanese government created the position after the 2022 Optus data breach exposed flaws in the systems used to respond to major cyber incidents.

McGuinness replaces Air Marshal Darren Goldie, who was recalled to the Defence Department last year following allegations about a workplace matter.

McGuinness said in an interview that she and Home Affairs Minister Clare O’Neil were preparing to launch a major national education campaign to ask Australians to take more responsibility for protecting themselves from cyberattacks.

“If you’re on the internet, if you have a smart device, then cybersecurity is your business,” she said, adding that she wanted to overturn the assumption that cybersecurity is “somebody else’s job”.

The campaign will urge Australians to use unique passwords and multifactor authentication for their online accounts and update their software regularly.

https://www.smh.com.au/ politics/ federal/ tiktok-faces-new-calls-for-bans-or-curbs -20240317 -p5fd1v. html

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80104e No.20584533

File: a0ce0156105e8a8⋯.jpg (158.19 KB,1280x720,16:9,Former_prime_minister_Paul….jpg)

>>20519961 (pb)

>>20525189 (pb)


Paul Keating invited to meet China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi on his visit to Australia



An “unofficial” meeting between Xi Jinping’s top foreign policy ­adviser Wang Yi and Paul Keating could overshadow the Albanese government’s diplomatic agenda during the Chinese envoy’s high stakes visit to Australia this week.

The Australian can reveal Chinese officials have invited the former Labor prime minister to a meeting with the Chinese Foreign Minister this week in Sydney, a jarring addition to a trip that Beijing says is intended to send “positive signals” for the relationship. Mr Keating’s audience with Mr Wang, the most senior Chinese ­official to visit Australia in seven years, would be the most extraordinary intervention yet in the Labor legend’s public campaign against the Albanese government’s foreign policy.

The former prime minister’s ­increasingly brazen interventions have frustrated the government, but have been well received in Beijing where he has been praised by China’s Foreign Ministry for his “voice of reason”.

Mr Keating, Australia’s most influential AUKUS opponent, did not respond when contacted on Sunday about the meeting. China’s diplomats in Australia also did not respond.

Foreign Minister Penny Wong, who married her long-term partner on Saturday, and her department both declined to comment.

The Chinese government’s ­attempt to set up a meeting with Senator Wong’s loudest critic demonstrates Beijing’s ongoing efforts to chip away at Australia’s bipartisan support for the AUKUS pact and Canberra’s wider efforts to work with other capitals to stop China dominating the region.

If Mr Keating agrees to the Chinese request, the meeting would likely take place in Sydney on Thursday, the day after Mr Wang will hold the “China-Australia Foreign and Strategic Dialogue” in Canberra with Senator Wong. On Wednesday, Mr Wang will also meet Anthony Albanese.

It comes only a fortnight after Mr Keating stunned regional capitals by personally chiding Senator Wong, this time as she hosted leaders from Southeast Asia. Mr Keating released a public statement accusing Senator Wong of making “anti-China” comments and rattling “the China can” in a speech about maritime security in the region.

Mr Wang was scheduled to ­arrive in New Zealand late on Sunday. His visit to the two Tasman neighbours is the first by a Chinese foreign minister in seven years.

Wellington’s interest in joining the second pillar of AUKUS is expected to loom over his meetings on Monday with his New Zealand counterpart Winston Peters and Prime Minister Christopher Luxon. Mr Wang’s diplomatic underlings in Wellington and Beijing have warned of consequences for New Zealand if it goes down the “dangerous path” of joining the non-nuclear second pillar of the security technology agreement.

The Luxon government ­expects the seasoned Chinese ­diplomat to continue that anti-AUKUS message. “He won’t say it explicitly, but it will be there,” said a source in Wellington.

During the breakdown of Australia’s relations with China, Beijing tried to create a wedge between Canberra and Wellington. At the peak of Beijing’s fury in mid-2021, China’s foreign ministry praised the Ardern government for its “mutual respect” while declaring the Morrison government “insane”.

Since coming to office in 2022, the Albanese government has worked closely with Wellington to co-ordinate approaches, particularly on the Pacific.

They have also been successful in getting endorsement from Wellington for Australia’s nuclear-powered submarine AUKUS plan, despite the New Zealand government’s nuclear free domestic stance.

New Zealand’s Prime Minister even recently backed Senator Wong after Mr Keating criticised her for alluding to China’s “destabilising, provocative and coercive actions” in the South China Sea in a speech at the ASEAN-Australia summit in Melbourne.

Mr Luxon, who was also at the summit, said it was an “excellent speech” that promoted peace and stability in the region.

“She’s right. If we can get all parties, where there’s tension, to actually follow the rules that keeps us all safe,” said Mr Luxon, who became PM in November.


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80104e No.20584535

File: 9664d1d4d258a79⋯.jpg (261.14 KB,2047x1152,2047:1152,Paul_Keating_meets_in_mid_….jpg)



Jason Young, director of Victoria University’s New Zealand Contemporary China Research Centre, said Wellington and Canberra were now “basically in the same boat” when it comes to “balancing the risks and opportunities of China”. “I think the only thing that really distinguishes us is that the security posture from Australia is clearer,” Professor Young told The Australian.

“New Zealand’s is similar, but there’s not a clarity of statement in the same way.”

While Beijing’s trans-Tasman wedge tactics have encountered increasing resistance, the Chinese government has had more success within the Australian Labor Party. Mr Keating has been routinely praised by China’s Foreign Ministry and Chinese state media for his sharp criticism of Australian foreign policy and America.

Weeks after the Albanese government was elected, Chinese ambassador to Australia, Xiao Qian, met with the former prime minister at his home in Potts Point, Sydney.

While Mr Wang’s schedule is being tightly guarded, The Australian can also reveal he will have a working lunch on Wednesday in Canberra with a group of about 10 senior China-focused Australian business figures and a clutch of think-tankers and academics. All invited guests declined to comment when contacted by The Australian on Sunday.

He will also meet with Mr Albanese, who is expected to formally invite Chinese Premier Li Qiang to Australia. That visit is being billed as a trip to mark the 10th anniversary of President Xi Jinping’s state visit to Australia, during which the Chinese leader addressed the federal parliament, signed a free-trade agreement and upgraded the relationship to a “comprehensive strategic partnership”.

Opposition foreign affairs spokesman Simon Birmingham has expressed an interest in meeting Mr Wang. Sources familiar with the discussions told The Australian that the Chinese embassy was still to confirm whether a meeting would take place.

The Chinese Foreign Minister visit will be conducted almost entirely behind closed doors, although Chinese state media may be allowed access for some portions. The Australian has been told an offer to hold a joint press conference with Senator Wong was declined. Much of Mr Wang’s visit will focus on creating a receptive environment for the Chinese Premier’s visit, which sources familiar with the plans have told The Australian is expected in June or July.

Beijing has signalled it will remove its crippling tariffs on Australian wine before the end of the month, which should see the industry’s China trade rebuild to around $400m-$500m a year.

Canberra continues to work on getting China to end its black-listing of Australian live lobster and just over half a dozen beef abattoirs, the final products on a trade sanctions list that once ran to $20bn a year.

Senator Wong will also press for leniency for Yang Hengjun, the Australian who was given a suspended death sentence in February. The “positive” part of the agenda for the foreign ministers’ meeting will include climate change co-operation and a focus on green energy transition.

It may also include the future of two giant pandas in the Adelaide Zoo, Wang Wang and Fu Ni, who are on loan from Beijing and are due to return to China. They were offered as a diplomatic gift by then president Hu Jintao on a visit in 2007 after advocacy by then foreign minister Alexander Downer. South Australia’s panda enthusiasts hope Senator Wong is able to either extend their stay or secure their replacements.


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80104e No.20584558

File: 77c95032768134f⋯.jpg (122.06 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Keating_confirms_meeting_w….jpg)

File: 598aa03811da00e⋯.jpg (197.14 KB,2028x1141,2028:1141,Foreign_Minister_Penny_Won….jpg)



Keating confirms meeting with Chinese envoy


Paul Keating has revealed he has accepted an invitation to meet with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi in Sydney this week during a key bilateral visit by the senior Communist Party official.

“As a matter of courtesy, let alone anything else, I was happy to advise the Chinese Foreign Ministry that, given I had the time, I would be pleased to sit down and discuss international matters with the Foreign Minister,” the former Labor prime minister said in a statement.

The audience on Thursday has the potential to overshadow Minister Wang’s meeting a day earlier with Penny Wong in Canberra, given Mr Keating’s strident pro-China news, his ongoing criticism of Senator Wong, and his vocal attacks on Australia’s AUKUS nuclear submarine pact with the US and UK – which Beijing opposes.

Mr Keating said the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet had offered – after the invitation was made – to facilitate the arrangements.

It’s understood the offer was extended to ensure security and appropriate diplomatic support for the meeting.

Mr Keating said he had “strongly supported” the Albanese government’s efforts to “re-anchor Australian foreign policy in the region”, and “stabilise relations with China”.

“And, given the chance, I will be emphasising these points to Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi. Australia has moved substantially from the counterproductive baiting policy the Morrison government applied to China to now something much more civil and productive,” he said.

Mr Keating took issue at The Australian’s reporting of the invitation as an “extraordinary intervention” and a “jarring addition” to Mr Wang’s visit, as the Albanese government attempts to recalibrate relations with Beijing.

“Would The Australian so describe as ‘jarring’ and ‘extraordinary’ a similar invitation from the British Foreign Secretary to former Prime Minister Tony Abbott or Scott Morrison? Of course not,” he said.

“This is the normal intercourse of national and international discussion that takes place across the world.”

After repeatedly attacking the Sydney Morning Herald over its reporting on China, Mr Keating claimed The Australian’s reporting on the subject was “distorted” and “trenchantly anti-Chinese”.

The former Prime Minister said he supported the Albanese government "most, if not all the time".

His comments come just a fortnight after he sharply criticised Senator Wong as she and Anthony Albanese hosted leaders from South East Asia and New Zealand at the ASEAN-Australia summit in Melbourne.

In a public statement that stunned capitals around the region, Mr Keating said “it doesn’t take much to encourage Penny Wong, sporting her ‘deeply concerned’ frown, to rattle the China can”.

The attack came after Senator Wong criticised Beijing’s behaviour in the South China Sea in a keynote speech.

Mr Keating also chided the Albanese government for not sacking the head of ASIO Mike Burgess and head of the Office National Intelligence Andrew Shearer, who he said were part of “the anti-China Australian strategic policy establishment”.

Those incendiary comments followed an address last year at the National Press Club where he mocked Senator Wong’s diplomatic efforts in the Pacific, a key priority for the government.

“Running around the Pacific Islands with a lei around your neck handing out money, which is what Penny does, is not foreign policy. It’s a consular task,” Mr Keating said.

“Foreign policy is what you do with the great powers: what you do with China, what you do with the United States,” he said.

While the former prime minister’s ­increasingly brazen interventions have frustrated the government, they have been well received in Beijing where he has been praised by China’s Foreign Ministry for his “voice of reason”.

China’s leaders and senior officials regularly seek out meetings with select retired leaders.

Last year, President Xi Jinping hosted former Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte in Beijing, a pointed meeting held after relations had soured with the Philippines current president Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

Mr Keating is the only former Prime Minister that Beijing has sought a meeting with during the visit by Xi’s top foreign affairs adviser.



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80104e No.20584566

File: e97ede729a92c64⋯.jpg (267.4 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Chinese_Foreign_Minister_W….jpg)

File: de36ffb272a0ee4⋯.jpg (65.31 KB,1280x720,16:9,Why_did_Chinese_Foreign_Mi….jpg)




What’s behind Wang Yi’s meeting with Paul Keating?

JOHN LEE - MARCH 18, 2024


Paul Keating has accepted Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s extraordinary invitation to meet on the sidelines of his official visit to Australia.

It’s clear the meeting will overshadow the official diplomatic meetings Wang Yi will participate in this week, but it goes much further: China’s chief diplomat has found a novel way to insult his Australian host and advance his country’s interests at the same time.

First, the part about insulting his host.

Beijing is fully aware that the former prime minister has been levelling personal and ungracious criticisms against Foreign Minister Penny Wong and Australian strategic policy more generally.

That Wang Yi’s invitation was a calculated move to belittle his Australian host is obvious. He will be delighted Keating accepted. There is cunning and purpose behind Wang reaching out to Keating. From foreign interference to economic punishment, Beijing’s aim is to divide the Labor Party and the Australian community. This is attempted through seduction or coercion to encourage voices within the government to agitate for a softening of policies towards China.

There are some in Labor who agree with Keating that our alliance with the US and arrangements like AUKUS do not serve our interests because they are an affront to China. Using the drama of an unofficial meeting to amplify the voice and standing of Keating is designed to make it more difficult for the Albanese government to stiffen future policies towards China.

The Albanese government has inadvertently created this opening for Wang Yi’s bold diplomatic move. Beijing has been praising the current government for learning from the supposed mistakes of the Turnbull and Morrison governments. And the Albanese government has been happy to accept the congratulations. There might be poor appetite for the rest of us to rake over the coals of why that breakdown in relations occurred prior to Labor retaking power. But it is important we do so because it reveals why Xi Jinping was so aggrieved with what happened before, and why Beijing believes the Albanese government can become even more compliant – this time with Keating’s assistance.

It is easy to identify the specific decisions that most enraged Beijing because it was so explicit – the Fourteen Grievances issued to Australia in November 2021 was a case-in-point.

Beijing knows many Australian policies will never align with Chinese interests. What it does not tolerate is Australia persuading other countries to adopt similar actions. For example, it wasn’t just that we banned Huawei from participating in our 5G network rollout. The greater offence was that Australia successfully encouraged others to do the same.


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80104e No.20584568

File: bd3ec0de5210a9c⋯.jpg (1.64 MB,5881x3858,5881:3858,What_s_behind_Wang_Yi_s_me….jpg)

File: ffc468bd3639115⋯.jpg (930.73 KB,3500x2328,875:582,Foreign_ministers_Penny_Wo….jpg)



This was the same with Australia leading the way in demanding Beijing abide by the legally binding 2016 Arbitration Decision, which ruled against its expansive claims to the South China Sea, or starting a conversation among liberal democracies about protecting one’s institutions against Chinese interference and covert influence.

That occurred under Turnbull. Under Morrison, Australia promoted the framing that the greatest threats are from an axis of revisionist and coercive authoritarian countries led by China, Russia and Iran. It was a leading voice in warning other countries that China is preparing for war in the Taiwan Straits and the only sensible option is to deter Beijing by increasing our hard power capability and willingness to use it.

Xi was also furious with Morrison’s insistence that China take responsibility for reckless and dishonest decisions which led to a global pandemic.

In that period, Australian activism was praised by Japan, the US, Britain and Lithuania. The more economic punishments China imposed on Australian exporters, the more prominent a platform given to Canberra by entities such as the Quad (consisting of the US, Japan, India, and Australia) and the Group of Seven forum. It was a period when Beijing openly condemned Australia as an upstart and troublemaker.

We are now in a calmer period with China.

Wang Yi is not so deluded as to think that Canberra will abandon AUKUS or downgrade our alliances. But it would like to see Australia continuing to swim within the lanes China sets for us in the name of stabilising the bilateral relationship.

The current government has done some of that. For example, 19 and 13 economies joined our WTO actions against Beijing on China’s wine and barley restrictions respectively.

For the sake of improving bilateral ties, Australia dropped those cases meaning China suffered no economic or institutional injury by using bilateral processes to negotiate its way back to square one.

The Albanese government supports AUKUS but has dutifully downplayed the urgency of collective deterrence against China over Taiwan. Australia is no longer the same leading voice against Chinese maritime aggression, intellectual property theft, economic coercion or other activities that are an affront to our preferred system of rules and laws.

But the more we concede, the more China probes and pushes.

Wang Yi and Keating will express a very similar view that abandoning the international activism of the Turnbull/Morrison years is not enough and Australia must become even more compliant if it wants to have an enduringly stable relationship with China.

The former prime minister and Chinese foreign minister are hoping some members of the Labor Party and other prominent Australians will give support to their perspective after their meeting – compelling Albanese to oversee an increasingly timid foreign policy.

This is why Wang Yi issued the invitation to Keating, and what he hopes the stabilisation project with Australia will achieve for China.

Dr John Lee is a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute in Washington DC. From 2016-18, he was senior adviser to the Australian Foreign Minister.


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80104e No.20589267

File: 19bc3af553575d3⋯.jpg (281.5 KB,2047x1152,2047:1152,Chinese_Foreign_Minister_W….jpg)

File: dc60d68d89cfad6⋯.jpg (255.74 KB,2047x1152,2047:1152,Paul_Keating_meets_in_mid_….jpg)


Business scrambles for Canberra audience with China’s foreign minister as Paul Keating confirms meeting



Senior Australian business figures are scrambling to get to Canberra for a secretive, hastily-organised event with China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi on a trip that has been overshadowed by a “pointed and somewhat insulting” meeting between Xi Jinping’s top international affairs adviser and Paul Keating.

The Australian can reveal senior executives from mining giants Rio Tinto and BHP are expected to be at the closed-door lunch on Wednesday, which is being arranged by the Chinese government and the Australia China Business Council.

Executives from Treasury Wine Estates and Graincorp — two the largest Australian businesses caught up in China’s trade coercion campaign — are said to be among the 10 invited guests, although the extremely short notice means they may be unable to attend.

“Everyone’s really nervous. No one wants to do anything that upsets things,” said a source at one of the invited companies, speaking anonymously because of the extreme sensitivity.

The Australian has also learned that a protest against Chinese government human rights abuses is being organised for Wednesday morning outside Parliament House, and is expected to include members of Australia’s Tibet, Uyghur and Hong Kong diaspora communities.

It will be held as Foreign Minister Penny Wong meets with her Chinese counterpart on what will be the most senior visit by a member of Xi Jinping’s government in seven years. Mr Wang is due to arrive in Sydney late on Tuesday.

Chinese officials had been working to create “positive energy” before the visit, signalling that Beijing’s crippling wine tariff will be lifted before the end of the month.

Figures in the Australian lobster industry are hopeful they may also get good news on their now almost four-year long black-listing after Wednesday’s meeting.

But China’s decision to seek out a meeting with Mr Keating, the most prominent critic of the Albanese government’s foreign policy, has derailed Canberra’s fastidious preparations for the visit.

Members of the government were dismayed by the former Labor leader’s latest intervention.

A senior Australian business figure said told The Australian it was “the biggest Chinese diplomatic own-goal” since officials at China’s embassy in Canberra released its list of “14 demands” in late 2020.

“It’s stupid. And you know what is even more stupid? Paul agreeing to it,” the business figure said.

On Monday, as China’s Foreign Minister met his counterpart Winston Peters and New Zealand PM Prime Minister Christopher Luxon in Wellington, the former Labor Prime Minister bristled at criticism of his audience with the senior Chinese envoy.

The Australian had revealed that Chinese officials had been seeking to arrange the meeting with Australia’s most prominent AUKUS critic. It is set to be held in Sydney on Thursday.

“As a matter of courtesy, let alone anything else, I was happy to advise the Chinese Foreign Ministry that, given I had the time, I would be pleased to sit down and discuss international matters with the Foreign Minister,” the former Labor PM said in a statement.

Mr Keating said that the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet had offered — after the invitation was made — to facilitate the arrangements.

Sources familiar with the preparations for the meeting said the offer was extended to ensure security and appropriate support for Mr Keating and the visiting Chinese Foreign Minister.

Mr Keating said on Monday that he had “strongly supported” the Albanese government’s efforts to “re-anchor Australian foreign policy in the region”, and “stabilise relations with China”.

“And, given the chance, I will be emphasising these points to Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi. Australia has moved substantially from the counter-productive baiting policy the Morrison government applied to China to now something much more civil and productive,” he said.


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80104e No.20589268

File: a3774ed95377136⋯.jpg (234.58 KB,2047x1152,2047:1152,Chinese_Foreign_Minister_W….jpg)

File: 3423504f1de5244⋯.jpg (284.67 KB,2047x1152,2047:1152,On_Monday_New_Zealand_Fore….jpg)



His meeting with President Xi’s top foreign policy adviser will be held just a fortnight after he sharply criticised Senator Wong as she and Anthony Albanese hosted leaders from South East Asia and New Zealand at the ASEAN-Australia summit in Melbourne.

In his Monday statement, the former Prime Minister said he supported the Albanese government “most, if not all the time”.

Mr Keating also took issue at The Australian’s reporting of the invitation as an “extraordinary intervention” and a “jarring addition” to Mr Wang’s visit, as the Albanese government attempts to recalibrate relations with Beijing.

“Would The Australian so describe as ‘jarring’ and ‘extraordinary’ a similar invitation from the British Foreign Secretary to former Prime Minister Tony Abbott or Scott Morrison? Of course not,” he said.

“This is the normal intercourse of national and international discussion that takes place across the world.”

After repeatedly attacking the Sydney Morning Herald over its reporting on China, Mr Keating claimed The Australian’s reporting on the subject was “distorted” and “trenchantly anti-Chinese”.

In his public statement on March 5 that stunned capitals around the region, Mr Keating said “it doesn’t take much to encourage Penny Wong, sporting her ‘deeply concerned’ frown, to rattle the China can”.

The attack came after Senator Wong criticised Beijing’s behaviour in the South China Sea in a keynote speech.

Mr Keating also chided the Albanese government for not sacking the head of ASIO Mike Burgess and head of the Office National Intelligence Andrew Shearer, who he said were part of “the anti-China Australian strategic policy establishment”.

Those incendiary comments followed an address last year at the National Press Club where he mocked Senator Wong’s diplomatic efforts in the Pacific, a key priority for the government.

“Running around the Pacific Islands with a lei around your neck handing out money, which is what Penny does, is not foreign policy. It’s a consular task,” Mr Keating said.

“Foreign policy is what you do with the great powers: what you do with China, what you do with the United States,” he said.

While the former prime minister’s ­increasingly brazen interventions have frustrated the government, they have been well received in Beijing where he has been praised by China’s Foreign Ministry for his “voice of reason”.

China’s leaders and senior officials regularly seek out meetings with select retired leaders.

Last year, President Xi Jinping hosted former Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte in Beijing, a pointed meeting held after relations had soured with the Philippines current president Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

Mr Keating is the only former Prime Minister that Beijing has sought a meeting with during Mr Wang’s visit.

Senator Wong’s office again declined to comment on the meeting on Monday.

Shadow Foreign Minister Senator Birmingham said Mr Keating’s meeting was “pointed and somewhat insulting” given the extent of his commentary directed towards Australia’s Foreign Minister.

“Paul Keating’s reckless and irresponsible comments since the Albanese Government was elected demonstrates an underlying division within the broader Labor Party,” Senator Birmingham said.

“Australia is a country of free speech and diverse political thought. Some will see a certain irony in this meeting being sought.

“Whatever their personal views, our former Prime Ministers carry with them a special responsibility to be cognisant of changing security challenges and judicious in the use of their office.

“Paul Keating’s running commentary has been neither, and is clearly welcomed for propaganda purposes elsewhere,” he said.


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80104e No.20589270

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Paul Keating appears to be a willing partner in Chinese charade


Paul Keating says he supports Labor’s move to end “counter-productive baiting” of China, but he remains curiously willing to provoke senior party figures.

In his latest missive from his Potts Point mansion, Keating made the astonishing claim that he had backed Penny Wong in her attempts to stabilise Australia-China relations.

His statement on Monday confirmed he had accepted an invitation to meet with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi in Sydney this week – an inflammatory move that could upstage the diplomat’s meetings with Wong and Anthony Albanese.

This is the same former Labor PM who accused Wong a fortnight ago of deploying her “deeply concerned frown to rattle the China can”. And who could forget his attack on Wong last year, accusing her of speaking in “platitudes” and “failing to add one iota of substance” to securing peace between China and the US.

Wang’s request for an audience with Keating – revealed by The Australian on Monday – is straight out of the Chinese Communist Party playbook. Senior Chinese officials often call on sympathetic former leaders in the countries they travel to, just as they seek out supporters in the Australian-Chinese business communities. It sends a signal to the host government and the Chinese domestic audience about China’s wider influence.

But it’s a particularly bold move in this case, given Labor’s relatively accommodating position on China and the scale of Keating’s attacks on Wong. As China watcher Clive Hamilton has observed, Keating is one of Beijing’s “most committed advocates”, arguing human rights are a Western concept that doesn’t apply to China, and lauding the CCP as “the best government in the world in the last 30 years”.

Labor figures privately dismiss the former PM as “yesterday’s man”. But the 80-year-old former leader still has influence in the party.

Jim Chalmers speaks to him regularly, and his strident anti-AUKUS views are shared by many of Labor’s rank and file.

The optics of the Wang-Keating meeting are terrible for both Wong and Albanese as they try to recalibrate Australia’s China relationship without undermining ties with the US.

The Albanese government’s position on China is really the best that Beijing could expect, given Beijing’s hostile treatment of Australia in recent years. It gave China an off-ramp to de-escalate the tensions between the countries, and it refrains from openly criticising Beijing.

Wong herself continues to speak in veiled terms about China’s threatening behaviour, warning of “destabilising provocative and coercive actions” in a recent speech to ASEAN leaders, rather than calling out Beijing by name.

This wasn’t enough for Keating, who attacked what he described as a “mindless pro-American stance”.

He was once a ruthless political performer, but the politics of the China debate seems to elude the former PM.

The Coalition would leap on any hint of capitulation to Beijing, painting Labor as weak on national security at a time of unprecedented threat.

For its part, China wants to have its cake and eat it too. It will take Wong and Albanese’s careful statements on the bilateral relationship as a show of respect, while using Keating to amplify its own attacks on Australian and US policy.

It’s hard to believe Keating is an unwitting party in the charade.

Ben Packham is The Australian's foreign affairs and defence correspondent.


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80104e No.20589286

File: 4c900da0969930a⋯.jpg (275.56 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Ukrainian_Ambassador_to_Au….jpg)

File: ee49bd74c5a425a⋯.jpg (239.44 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Mr_Myroshnychenko_has_aske….jpg)

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>>20132098 (pb)

‘A bowl of vomit’ - Ukrainian ambassador Vasyl Myroshnychenko blasts Four Corners episode

Ukraine’s Ambassador to Australia has blasted an ABC program about the war in Ukraine as “pro-Putin and pro-violence” as he demands a meeting with the boss of the network.

Jade Gailberger - March 19, 2024

Ukraine’s Ambassador to Australia Vasyl Myroshnychenko has blasted an ABC program about the war in Ukraine as a “journalistic equivalent of a bowl of vomit”.

The documentary by filmmaker Sean Langan titled “Ukraine’s War: The Other Side” aired on Four Corners on Monday night and was plugged as offering a human perspective of life on the Russian frontline.

But Mr Myroshnychenko on Tuesday accused it of unquestioningly repeating “countless blatant lies, historical distortions, racist claims and propaganda narratives emanating from the Kremlin”.

“It also minimised and denigrated the deaths of thousands of innocent Ukrainian men, women and children who have been killed by Russian soldiers in an illegal and brutal invasion strongly condemned by Australia and the majority of countries through the UNGA resolution in March 2022,” he wrote on X.

“The Australian Broadcasting Corporation should be ashamed that it put such total garbage to air.

“It completely served the interests of Russia’s dictator, Putin.”

Mr Myroshnychenko said he had asked, via Communications Minister Michelle Rowland, for a meeting with the managing director of the ABC and the executive producer of Four Corners.

He said he sought to understand what process led to the airing of “this pro-Putin and pro-violence propaganda piece” by the national broadcaster.

“I will share with them the facts that the program totally disregarded,” Mr Myroshnychenko said.

The UK documentary was released on February 19.

Australian Federation of Ukrainian Organisations co-chair Stefan Romaniw has called for an apology, saying the ABC’s decision to air the documentary provided a platform for Russian propaganda.

Mr Romaniw says the program has also caused “profound distress” for the Ukrainian-Australian community, many of whom have loved ones suffering due to the actions of Russian soldiers.

“It is nonsense for the ABC to pretend this was fearless journalism, bringing us ‘extraordinary access’ to the ‘other side’,” he said.

“Spreading lies and sowing confusion about right and wrong is a direct aim of Russian propaganda. And now the ABC has fallen into the trap, using taxpayers’ money to beam Russian propaganda directly into Australian living rooms.”

Mr Romaniw said he would write to the ABC board, managing director and Communications Minister to complain about the broadcast.

“The AFUO calls on the ABC to apologise for the editorial oversight which allowed for this program to be aired in Australia,” he said.

Ms Rowland said the ABC had operational and editorial independence.

“I have received the Ukrainian Ambassador to Australia’s correspondence, and have provided him with information regarding the ABC complaints process and relevant contact details,” she said.

Members of the Ukrainian community are expected to protest outside the ABC’s Ultimo studios in Sydney on Tuesday afternoon.

An ABC spokesperson defended the airing of the “challenging but legitimate documentary”, saying it was made by a reputable journalist and adds to “our understanding of this tragic conflict” by showing the full, horrific impact of the war.

The spokesperson said the ABC would meet with the Ukrainian Ambassador to discuss his concerns.

“The documentary is being seen internationally and is considered an important contribution to the reporting of the war,” the spokesperson said.

“The reporter challenges the Russian soldiers and civilians featured in the film about their beliefs and opinions

“We believe Australian audiences also have the right to watch it and make up their own minds.”



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80104e No.20589296

YouTube embed. Click thumbnail to play.

>>20493657 (pb)

>>20519961 (pb)

ASIO, ASIS chiefs removed from national security committee

Two key national security chiefs have been removed from the Albanese government’s top national security committee.

Sharri Markson - March 19, 2024

Two of Australia’s leading intelligence bosses have been dumped from the Albanese government’s top security body.

The head of ASIO, Director-General Mike Burgess, and the head of ASIS, Director-General Kerri Hartland, have been removed from the Albanese government’s national security meeting of Cabinet, according to Sky News.

The director-generals have previously given advice on key security and sovereignty issues within the cabinet, which makes decisions on the highest risk and most urgent national security matters.

But it’s understood Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet secretary Glyn Davis has removed both as permanent members.

The change means both will instead be invited on a case-by-case basis to provide advice to the security body.

Coalition home affairs spokesman James Paterson slammed the decision, urging the government to “reverse this reckless decision urgently”.

“It is very concerning to hear that the Albanese government has removed intelligence and security agency heads from the critical committee of government considering national security matters,” he told Sky News Australia.

“They should have available the best advice from our expert agencies when making decisions in the national interest, but that’s pretty hard if they are not in the room. No wonder this government has been so weak and incompetent on national security.”

It comes weeks after Mr Burgess revealed Australians were being heavily targeted by foreign interference, including bombshell revelations that a former Australian MP had “sold out” our nation after being recruited by a sophisticated foreign intelligence network.

The ‘A-team’ network, which Mr Burgess refused to reveal the origins of, was later revealed to be Chinese-based.

Shadow defence spokesman Andrew Hastie also criticised the move.

“It’s a very concerning data point, it’s a warning sign flashing red for me when you’re kicking intelligence heads out of a committee,” Mr Hastie told Sky News.

“Intelligence heads, it’s not their job to deliver good news, they deliver bad news, it’s their job to warn the government of the challenges ahead.

“To not have the head of ASIO or head of ASIS in the room is very concerning.”

Asked why ASIO and ASIS had been removed from the National Security Committee of Cabinet, an Albanese Government spokesman said: “We don’t comment on matters relating to national security.”

An ASIO spokesman said “membership of cabinet committees is a matter for government”.



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80104e No.20589317

File: 4bafc14418c9849⋯.jpg (1.68 MB,5271x3514,3:2,Former_head_of_the_NSA_Mik….jpg)

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Australia should be talking to Trump about AUKUS: ex-security chief Michael Rogers

Andrew Tillett - Mar 19, 2024

Australia needs to sell the benefits of the AUKUS pact for the US to Donald Trump to prevent the planned sale of nuclear-powered submarines being knocked off course, a former US security chief who served in the Trump presidency says.

Former US National Security Agency head Michael Rogers said in an interview with The Australian Financial Review that Australian officials should reach out to Mr Trump and his campaign ahead of November’s presidential election to shore up the trilateral deal between Australia, the US and UK.

“AUKUS talks about strategic investments both in the submarine manufacturing arena as well as the broader tech arena. My argument would be those are in the best interests of both nations and provide benefits to both,” said Mr Rogers, who was appointed head of the NSA under Barack Obama in 2014 and whose term ended four years later during the Trump presidency.

The Australian and British governments are expected to announce on Friday that British shipbuilder BAE Systems will build nuclear-powered submarines in Adelaide.

Foreign Minister Penny Wong and Defence Minister Richard Marles will host their UK counterparts David Cameron and Grant Shapps in Canberra on Thursday before heading to Adelaide for the annual AUKMIN joint talks.

Mr Marles and Mr Shapps are also expected to announce new measures boosting cooperation between the Australian and British militaries.

BAE Systems has long been touted as the builder of the submarine. It builds the Royal Navy’s submarines in England and has a big presence in Adelaide, where it is about to start building frigates for the Australian navy.

“In an increasingly complex strategic environment, the United Kingdom remains a critical partner in support of a rules-based global order,” Mr Marles said.

Under AUKUS, Australia and the UK are developing a next generation nuclear-powered submarine. The UK expects to deliver the first of its submarines in the late 2030s, while the first Australian built submarine will arrive in the early 2040s.

But before that, the AUKUS agreement calls for the US to transfer to Australia at least three and up to five Virginia class submarines.

However, concerns have been raised that the unpredictable Mr Trump and his “America First” mantra may not honour the deal if he returns to the White House.

Mr Rogers, who is visiting Australia in his role as a member of cybersecurity firm CyberCX’s global advisory board, said it was crucial for Australian officials to educate Mr Trump about Australian concerns, walk him through the AUKUS process and emphasis the important role the US president has to play in delivering the program.

“One of the points to make is AUKUS talks about investment in US infrastructure and US shipbuilding technology,” Mr Rogers said.

“There is a definite component to this that helps the United States in addition to helping Australia and the UK.

“Don’t wait until you have a winner … because remember when you are elected as president of the United States, you are trying to prepare for a whole lot of different issues. Lots of people want a piece of your time, lots of people want your attention.”

Mr Rogers said there was strong institutional support for AUKUS, pointing out the Pentagon’s past two budgets made specific references to the pact. He also downplayed that AUKUS was at risk after the most recent budget included funding to build only one new submarine in 2025.

“Let’s see what the Congress decided. If I was a betting man, we’re going to fund two Virginia class submarines in 2025, would be my guess,” he said.

Mr Rogers said the Turnbull and Morrison governments’ successful management of relations with Mr Trump during his first term in office offered pointers for how the Albanese government should handle him.

“I would argue that during President Trump’s term of office, he ultimately had a stronger relationship in many ways with Australia for example than he did with the United Kingdom which we traditionally talk about as the ‘special relationship’,” he said.

“My recommendation to my Australian teammates would be is there is a lot to learn from the past. I would step back and ask ‘How did you manage to put the US-Australian relationship in such a strong position during President Trump’s term’?”











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80104e No.20594954

YouTube embed. Click thumbnail to play.


Donald Trump says ‘nasty’ Kevin Rudd won’t ‘be there long’ if he returns as president

Sky News Australia

Mar 20, 2024

Donald Trump has issued a firm warning to Kevin Rudd, claiming the former Australian prime minister won’t remain ambassador to the US if his “hostile" language continues.

GB News host Nigel Farage questioned Mr Trump about some of Mr Rudd’s “horrible” comments where he labelled the former president a “traitor to the West”.

“I don’t know much about him, I heard he was a little bit nasty,” Mr Trump said.

“I hear he is not the brightest bulb, but I don’t know much about him.

“If he is at all hostile, he will not be there long.”

‘Trump & Farage: The Interview’ was broadcast by GB News in the United Kingdom and will air in full tonight on Sky News Australia. Watch from 8:30pm on Foxtel, Sky News Regional, or stream with the new SkyNews.com.au Streaming Subscription.


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80104e No.20594987

File: 7cc70aaed0ff018⋯.jpg (167.21 KB,1280x721,1280:721,Donald_Trump_has_blasted_A….jpg)

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File: 2bc0241c2fa870a⋯.mp4 (5.41 MB,1280x720,16:9,tn1uet0XEQpdOiZT.mp4)


Penny Wong vows to keep Kevin Rudd in Washington if Donald Trump is re-elected



Penny Wong says Labor will keep Kevin Rudd on as Ambassador to the US if Donald Trump wins the upcoming election, after the former president and Republican candidate warned he was “not the brightest bulb” and might not last as Australia’s envoy if he returned to the White House.

In an interview with Nigel Farage on GB News, to be aired in Australia by Sky News, the former president said he had heard Mr Rudd, who last year succeeded Arthur Sinodinos as the government’s man in the US capital, was “a little bit nasty”.

Anthony Albanese appointed Mr Rudd to the post in December 2022, despite the possibility of a Trump comeback, and the former Labor prime minister’s past criticisms of the Republican president as “nuts”, a “traitor to the West” and “the most destructive president in history”.

The Foreign Minister delivered an unequivocal “yes” when asked on Wednesday whether the government would retain Mr Rudd as ambassador in the event of a Trump victory in November.

“Even Peter Dutton has expressed confidence in Mr Rudd. Mr Rudd is a very effective ambassador. He’s recognised as doing – across this parliament – an excellent job in advancing Australia’s interests in the United States,” Senator Wong said.

“I point you in particular to the phenomenal amount of work being done on AUKUS in the period that he has been ambassador.

“He has been active in engaging with members of Congress on both sides of politics and he is a former prime minister, former foreign minister, is experienced … (which) means he will be able to work closely with whoever is elected by the American people as the United States’ president.”

Referencing the AUKUS defence pact, Farage told the Republican presidential nominee: “Things have changed in Australia, we’ve got a Labor government. The previous ambassador Joe Hockey, I think was quite a good friend of yours … Now they’ve appointed Kevin Rudd. He’s said the most horrible things. You were a destructive president, a traitor to the west”.

Mr Rudd has unleashed on Mr Trump repeatedly in public, calling him a “a traitor to the West” and guilty of “rancid treachery” over his role in as recently as February 2022.

“He won’t be there long if that’s the case … I don’t know much about him,” Mr Trump told Mr Farage during the interview, when the former Brexit party leader rattled off some of Mr Rudd’s less complimentary remarks about Mr Trump before he became ambassador.

If he’s at all hostile, he will not be there long,” Mr Trump, who is all but certain to become the Republican party’s nominee for president, added.

Presidents rarely terminate the commission of foreign ambassadors, who are selected by foreign governments, but they can choose not to meet or communicate with certain diplomats, which would make life difficult for the diplomatic mission in question.

An Australian government spokesman earlier said in a statement: “Kevin Rudd is doing a good job as Australia’s Ambassador to the United States.”


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80104e No.20594988

File: e43db25787ea8c0⋯.jpg (262.7 KB,1769x995,1769:995,Kevin_Rudd_and_his_wife_Th….jpg)

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Democratic Party congressman Joe Courtney, a champion of the AUKUS security pact who deals regularly with Mr Rudd, came out swinging in the ambassador’s defence.

“The ambassador’s term in DC has strengthened the US-Australia alliance immensely with enactment of AUKUS in 2023 because of his skilful work to create bipartisan consensus in a bitterly divided Congress,” Mr Courtney told The Australian.

“He is respected and admired by legislators on both sides of the aisle-a rare feat in DC,” he added.

Mr Trump’s remarks were the first time he has commented publicly on Mr Rudd and could signal a rocky path for Canberra-Washington relations should Mr Trump be re-elected president in November.

Joe Hockey, who developed a good relationship with Mr Trump as Australia’s ambassador, and Mr Sinodinos both told The Australian in January that Mr Rudd was likely to survive a Trump presidency.

“I think if Donald Trump is elected, on day one he will have a long list of people that he will want to seek vengeance against. And Kevin Rudd is not one of them,” Mr Hockey told The Australian in January.

Mr Rudd has been working hard to build relationships with Republicans since he formally presented his credentials to President Joe Biden in April last year as Australia’s envoy.

“The bottom line is I’ve been in this town on and off for 30 years, I have bucketloads of Republican friends and bucketloads of Democrat friends, working in foreign policy and national security,” he said then, at a press conference outside the White House.

‘Trump v Farage: The Interview’ will be broadcast on Wednesday March 20 at 8.30pm AEDT on Sky News Australia.



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80104e No.20595004

File: 1068cef1f24d1b3⋯.mp4 (15.54 MB,640x360,16:9,Rudd_to_stay_in_US_after_T….mp4)

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Rudd to stay in US after Trump threatened to boot him as ambassador

Mark Saunokonoko and Yashee Sharma - Mar 20, 2024

Foreign Minister Penny Wong has backed Kevin Rudd as Australia's ambassador to the US, after former president and Republican frontrunner Donald Trump threatened to have him booted from the role if he is re-elected.

In an interview on GB News with former UK far-right politician Nigel Farage, Trump was quizzed on potentially working in Washington with Rudd, who previously called him a "destructive president" and "a traitor to the West".

The former president responded with a heated spray, suggesting Rudd "won't be there long" if he wins this year's presidential race.

"I don't know much about him. I heard he was a little bit nasty. I hear he's not the brightest bulb. But, I don't know much about him," Trump said.

"But if he's at all hostile, he will not be there long."

In light of the comments, the foreign minister was asked whether the Albanese government would keep Rudd on as ambassador if Trump returned to the White House.

"The answer is yes," Wong said.

"Rudd is a very effective ambassador. He's recognised as doing across this parliament, as doing an excellent job in advancing Australia's interests in the United States."

Wong said Rudd has been working with members of Congress on both sides of politics and drew on his experience as former Australian prime minister and foreign minister.

"He will be able to work closely with whoever is elected by the American people as the United States president," she added.

The situation in Washington could, however, get awkward if Trump beats Biden at the voting booths later this year given some of Rudd's historical hot takes on the controversial leader.

Rudd declared "Donald Trump is a traitor to the West" in a 2022 Facebook post and "the most destructive president in history" in an X post two years earlier.

He also claimed he "drags America and democracy through the mud" and "thrives on fomenting, not healing, division. He abuses Christianity, church and bible to justify violence".

In an 2020 op-ed where he attacked Trump's handling of the coronavirus pandemic, Rudd described the former US president as a "quack apothecary" for making sensational claims that injecting disinfectant or using powerful lights might treat COVID-19.

Trump later walked back those comments, saying he was being sarcastic.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said Rudd would be "an outstanding appointment", when he confirmed the former Labor leader had been selected as ambassador to the US.

"He brings a great deal of credit to Australia by agreeing to take up this position as a former prime minister," Albanese said.



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80104e No.20595009

File: fc99585443fbc37⋯.mp4 (3.69 MB,1024x576,16:9,Donald_Trump_blasts_nasty_….mp4)

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Former US president Donald Trump insults ambassador Kevin Rudd, says 'he won't be there long' if he's 'hostile'

Brad Ryan and Jade Macmillan - 20 March 2024

Donald Trump has insulted Australian ambassador to the US Kevin Rudd as "not the brightest bulb", and suggested he might not remain in the role if the former president is re-elected.

Mr Trump, who recently became the Republican Party's presumptive nominee for the 2024 presidential election, was asked about the former prime minister during an interview on British television.

Politician-turned-broadcaster Nigel Farage told Mr Trump that Dr Rudd had "said the most horrible things" about him, including calling him a "destructive president" and a "traitor to the West".

"He won't be there long if that's the case," Mr Trump responded.

"I don't know much about him. I heard he was a little bit nasty.

"I hear he's not the brightest bulb, but I don't know much about him. If he's at all hostile, he will not be there long."

The interview was broadcast on conservative UK TV station GB News.

Dr Rudd has not commented today, but previously defended his criticisms of Mr Trump, arguing he made them in his capacity as an "independent think-tanker".

"I haven't done them as the Australian ambassador to the United States," he told Sky News in November last year.

"And, frankly, in this country as an independent think-tanker, people expect you to exercise a wide latitude of engagement in the public policy debate."

Dr Rudd was the president and CEO of the Asia Society prior to becoming the Australian ambassador a year ago.

"I think what I've had to say as a think-tanker about President Trump back then is fairly mild in relation to what John Howard had to say about Barack Obama as prime minister," he said in November.

"So I think we just need to take these things in our stride."

Asked about Mr Trump's comments on Sky News this morning, deputy opposition leader Sussan Ley declined to comment, "except to say that I think people in this government would now be wondering why they made the comments they did at the time".

"But Kevin Rudd is our ambassador, we do want him to succeed because he represents our national interest.

"It's a very close relationship as evidenced by so many agreements most recently."

Democratic congressman Joe Courtney, the co-chair of congress's Friends of Australia Caucus, tweeted his support for Dr Rudd after the interview aired.

Dr Rudd took up the post in March last year, replacing former Liberal minister Arthur Sinodinos.

He was among senior diplomats involved in negotiations to get key elements of the AUKUS defence deal – between Australia, the US and the UK – approved in congress.

The deal involves the future sale of at least three Virginia-class submarines to Australia by the US.

But concerns were raised when the necessary legislation passed congress in December, because the law allows any future president to cancel the submarine transfers.

The Australian embassy in Washington referred the ABC's queries about Mr Trump's remarks to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).

DFAT provided a statement that simply said: "Kevin Rudd is doing a good job as Australia’s Ambassador to the United States."

Australian Foreign Minister Penny Wong said Mr Rudd was "a very effective ambassador" and would not be replaced as ambassador if Trump were elected.

"Even [Opposition Leader Peter] Dutton has expressed confidence in Mr Rudd… He's recognised across this parliament as doing an excellent job in advancing Australia's interests in the United States."

"He has been active in engaging with members of congress on both sides of politics and he is a former prime minister [and] former foreign minister. His experience and skills mean he will be able to work closely with whoever is elected by the American people."

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, when asked about the matter in parliament, accused the opposition of playing politics.

"Particularly with our AUKUS allies, the idea that we have a cheap-shot question like that diminishes, diminishes the opposition and says everything about why this bloke is not fit to be the prime minister of Australia."

Mr Trump and Democratic President Joe Biden both secured the delegates necessary to become their parties' presumptive nominees for the presidential race after winning state primary elections last week.

Recent polls suggest the men are neck-and-neck. The election will be held in November.





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80104e No.20595022

File: db3a8ecabf509db⋯.jpg (95.39 KB,1024x683,1024:683,Ambassador_to_Washington_K….jpg)

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Trump has lit the fuse, but Rudd has been a ticking time bomb all along

Matthew Knott - March 20, 2024

Tick, tick, tick. Since Anthony Albanese chose Kevin Rudd to be Australia’s top diplomat in the United States, the former prime minister’s appointment has been a bomb waiting to explode. Now Donald Trump has lit the fuse, threatening to blow up Rudd’s diplomatic career in Washington and damage Australia’s most important security alliance.

Installing Rudd as Australia’s ambassador to the US was always a high-risk, high-reward gamble by Albanese. On the plus side, Rudd has a prodigious work ethic and a formidable intellect. His status as a world-renowned China expert promised a level of access in DC that other diplomats could not match.

On the downside were Rudd’s scathing and numerous public criticisms of Trump. When Albanese announced Rudd as the next ambassador in December 2022, it was just a month after Trump had declared his candidacy for a second term in office. This raised an obvious problem given Rudd had excoriated Trump as “nuts”, called him “the most destructive president in history” and described him as a “traitor to the West”.

To be sure, many Australians would have agreed with Rudd’s comments and cheered them on after the January 6, 2021 insurrection at the Capitol. Albanese himself had accused Trump of fomenting a “violent insurrection” and undermining democracy. Rudd’s comments, however, were far more personal, and it is he who is tasked with advancing Australia’s interests in Washington.

Bureaucrats in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade surely raised Rudd’s anti-Trump commentary as a potential problem when he was being considered for the role in 2022. But the plum position of ambassador is always the prime minister’s prerogative. Albanese was a steadfast ally to Rudd throughout Labor’s previous stint in office and wanted him to be Australia’s man in DC.

At that time, too, Trump’s return to power was a distant and doubtful prospect. The Democrats had performed surprisingly strongly in the midterm elections, boosting Joe Biden’s re-election prospects. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis was gaining traction as a plausible Republican presidential candidate. Any Trump backlash to Rudd’s appointment could be put off until another day.

Now that day has arrived, thanks to, of all people, former United Kingdom Independence Party leader and Brexit champion Nigel Farage. In an interview with Trump, Farage informed the presumptive presidential candidate that Rudd had said “horrible things” about him.

“He won’t be there long if that’s the case,” Trump replied.

“I don’t know much about him. I heard he was a little bit nasty. I hear he’s not the brightest bulb. But I don’t know much about him. But if, if he’s at all hostile, he will not be there long.”

Rudd has been working hard in Washington to build and deepen contacts in both the major parties, including with Republicans likely to serve in senior positions in a Trump White House. His lobbying efforts paid off last year when the US Congress passed legislation authorising the sale of Virginia-class submarines to Australia.

The problem for Rudd, and Australia, is that for Trump the personal is the political. Two of his defining characteristics are his aversion to criticism and his lust for revenge.

If word spreads among Republicans that Rudd is a Trump foe, that will imperil Australia’s standing in Washington and make it harder to convince Trump to hand over America’s precious nuclear-powered submarines. It raises the question: how much diplomatic capital will now have to be spent trying to change Trump’s mind about Rudd rather than pressing the case on AUKUS and other Australian policy priorities?

The prospect of a Trump return to the White House just became even more alarming for Canberra. Intellect and work ethic won’t get you far if the leader of the free world hates your guts.



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80104e No.20595024

YouTube embed. Click thumbnail to play.


Donald Trump threatens to get rid of 'nasty' Kevin Rudd

9 News Australia

Mar 20, 2024'

Donald Trump has threatened that Kevin Rudd, currently Australia's ambassador to the US, "won't be there long" because of his supposed "hostile" stance towards the former president.


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80104e No.20595025

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Trump vs Rudd: What the former President said about the former Prime Minister

The Australian

Mar 20, 2024

Donald Trump has declared Kevin Rudd “not the brightest bulb” and suggested the former Labor prime minister wouldn’t be welcome in Washington as ambassador under a second Trump presidency.

In an interview with Nigel Farage on GB News, to be aired in Australia by Sky News, the former president said he had heard Mr Rudd, who last year succeeded Arthur Sinodinos as the government’s man in the US capital, was “a little bit nasty”.

“He won’t be there long if that’s the case … I don’t know much about him,” Mr Trump told Mr Farage during the interview, when the former Brexit party leader rattled off some of Mr Rudd’s less complimentary remarks about Mr Trump before he became ambassador.


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80104e No.20595028

YouTube embed. Click thumbnail to play.


'Poor choice': Kevin Rudd showed ‘lack of judgement’ prior to becoming ambassador

Sky News Australia

Mar 20, 2024

Kevin Rudd has shown a “lack of judgement” and was a “poor choice” to become Australia’s Ambassador to the US, says Nationals Leader David Littleproud.

Mr Littleproud’s comments come after former US president Donald Trump called Mr Rudd "nasty" in an interview with GB News host Nigel Farage.

“I find it extraordinary that Kevin Rudd, who has had experience in the diplomatic pool and then as a prime minister has wanted to weigh in on foreign politics and then ended up as the ambassador to the United States,” Mr Littleproud told Sky News Australia.

“It shows that he was a poor choice to start with.

“Now if we have a Trump administration, we’re going to have a very difficult time in negotiating with a new administration, particularly with things as important as AUKUS.

“This is a problem for the government, they mismanaged this, and Kevin Rudd should have known better than to make disparaging comments about a potential future president of the United States.”

'Trump & Farage: The Interview' will air in full tonight on Sky News Australia at 8.30pm AEDT, available to watch online with a SkyNews.com.au Streaming Subscription, or on TV through Foxtel or Sky News Regional.


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80104e No.20595031

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Albanese defends Kevin Rudd after Donald Trump labels former PM as 'nasty'

Sky News Australia

Mar 20, 2024

Anthony Albanese has been pressed in Question Time for comment after Donald Trump labelled Australia's Ambassador to the United States Kevin Rudd as “nasty” during an exclusive interview with GB News host Nigel Farage.

The interview between former US President Donald Trump and Nigel Farage is set to air in Australia on Sky News this evening.

Donald Trump also slammed Kevin Rudd as being “not the brightest bulb” during the interview.

Prime Minister Albanese was on Wednesday questioned by Liberal MP Paul Fletcher about Mr Trump’s comments.

Mr Albanese said the question "says everything about the character of this current Opposition".

"At a time when Australians are worried about the cost of living and a range of issues that affect their daily lives – they decide to politicise Australia's representative in Washington DC, something that was never done by this side of the chamber when Arthur Sinodinas occupied that position, when Joe Hockey occupied that position," Mr Albanese said.

Mr Rudd was appointed as Australia's ambassador to the United States in March 2023 and previously served as Prime Minister from 2007 until 2010 and again briefly in 2013.

'Trump & Farage: The Interview' will air in full tonight on Sky News Australia at 8.30pm AEDT, available to watch online with a SkyNews.com.au Streaming Subscription, or on TV through Foxtel or Sky News Regional.


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80104e No.20595035

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Trump's swipe dominates Question Time as PM takes second shot defending Ambassador Rudd

Sky News Australia

Mar 20, 2024

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has taken a second opportunity during a fiery Question Time to defend Australia's Ambassador to the United States Kevin Rudd after Donald Trump labelled the former prime minister as being "nasty".

Mr Trump's comments came during an interview with GB News host Nigel Farage.

Donald Trump also slammed Kevin Rudd as being “not the brightest bulb” during the interview.

The issue dominated Question Time on Wednesday, with the Prime Minister later taking to the dispatch box to point out Opposition Leader Peter Dutton had made positive comments about Ambassador Rudd on Sky News as recently as last month.

'Trump & Farage: The Interview' will air in full tonight on Sky News Australia at 8.30pm AEDT, available to watch online with a SkyNews.com.au Streaming Subscription, or on TV through Foxtel or Sky News Regional.


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80104e No.20595038

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Penny Wong responds to Donald Trump’s comments about Kevin Rudd

Sky News Australia

Mar 20, 2024

Foreign Minister Penny Wong has responded to comments made by former US president Donald Trump on Australian Ambassador to the US Kevin Rudd.

In a GB News interview with Nigel Farage, Trump said he thought Rudd was “not the brightest bulb”, “nasty” and said he “won't be there long”.

In response to the scathing critique of Rudd, Ms Wong described the former Australian Prime Minister as a “very effective ambassador”.

She said he is recognised as doing an “excellent job” in advancing Australia’s interest in the United States.

“Even Mr Dutton has expressed confidence in Mr Rudd,” she said.

“He’s been extremely active in engaging in members of Congress on both sides.”


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80104e No.20595042

File: eebcbe0d5e417ca⋯.jpg (379.18 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Ambassador_of_Australia_to….jpg)

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File: 785a768c91acd92⋯.jpg (207.15 KB,852x662,426:331,Q_3466.jpg)


Trump 2.0 could end Kevin Rudd’s Washington stint


Donald Trump’s criticism of Kevin Rudd in a British television interview presents a major problem for Australia should the former president be re-elected in November.

With or without AUKUS, Australia will depend on the US for our security even more in coming years.

Insisting on having an ambassador in Washington whom the US president, for personal reasons, intensely dislikes would obviously be foolish.

Anthony Albanese launched Kevin Rudd’s bid to be Australian ambassador to the US a few weeks after Donald Trump, in November 2022, launched his bid to be re-elected president.

Practically everyone had written off Trump’s chances back then – Florida Governor Ron DeSantis was even rated a better chance of becoming president than Mr Trump.

A former prime minister with deep political and diplomatic contacts plus a renowned expertise in China appeared to be an inspired choice for the new Labor government.

It was no surprise Joe Biden welcomed Mr Rudd, 66, as Arthur Sinodinos’s replacement in April 2023.

Fast forward a year and a bit, and it’s looking a much less sensible, even reckless, choice.

Donald Trump has practically secured the Republican nomination, and according to both political betting markets and national polls has for months been the most likely winner of the November 2024 presidential election.

Mr Rudd’s disparaging remarks about Mr Trump, made on numerous occasions, were well known in Australia. He variously accused Mr Trump of “rancid treachery”, being “nuts” and the “most destructive president in history” in articles and interviews.

One irony of the current scandal is Mr Trump appeared to barely know who the former Australian prime minister was, let alone his criticism.

“I hear he is not the brightest bulb, but I don’t know much about him,” Mr Trump told Nigel Farage, who was only too eager to inform Mr Trump of Mr Rudd’s nasty comments. Well, he knows now.

If Donald Trump isn’t re-elected in November, Mr Rudd’s tenure is secure. If he is, Canberra will have to give serious thought to recalling him. Pride will have to be swallowed quick smart.

It’s highly unlikely a future President Trump would actively seek to persuade Australia to terminate Mr Rudd’s commission.

But he could easily ignore him, relegating anything related to Australia way down the White House’s to do list, putting AUKUS in jeopardy and making visits by Australian primes ministers difficult.

By all accounts, Kevin Rudd has performed well as Australia’s ambassador, helping shepherd critical AUKUS legislation through congress last year and ensuring a successful visit by Anthony Albanese to Washington last year.

And Rudd’s criticism of the former president in the wake of his defeat and ignominious departure from the White House in 2021 were popular, similarly made by many commentators then and since.

If Trump’s political renaissance cuts Mr Rudd’s tenure short, it will be very clear they weren’t prudent.



>These people are stupid.

>Enjoy the show!

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80104e No.20600270

File: 806b9bd61cee703⋯.jpg (123.73 KB,1024x768,4:3,Likely_Republican_nominee_….jpg)


Make Kevin great again: embassy’s high-wire act to placate Trump

Moments after Donald Trump publicly cast doubt on Kevin Rudd’s future as Australia’s US ­ambassador under a second Trump presidency, the phones started ringing.

CAMERON STEWART - March 20, 2024


Moments after Donald Trump publicly cast doubt on Kevin Rudd’s future as Australia’s ­ambassador in Washington under a second Trump presidency, the phones started ringing inside the Australian embassy in ­Washington.

Several senior Republicans who are close to Trump called to reassure Rudd, and Australia, not to take Trump’s words literally, saying that Rudd would be able to continue as ambassador if Trump defeated Joe Biden in the presidential election in November.

The split-screen moment ­underlined the highwire act Rudd and the Albanese government are trying to perform in Washington to prepare for a possible return of Trump to the White House. For months Rudd has crisscrossed America and worked the back rooms in Washington and on Capitol Hill to forge links with ­Republicans across the board, but especially with those who are close to Trump. It has been a campaign that has gained Rudd kudos among many in Trump’s circle, and these were the ones who called to offer reassurance to the former prime minister.

But in the end, the Trump army is led by only one man and it is ­Donald Trump who decides what goes. Which is why Canberra is alarmed by Trump’s outburst against Rudd, after interviewer Nigel Farage goaded the former president by telling him about Rudd’s previous criticisms of him.

Trump did not appear to be familiar with Rudd, but lashed out anyway. “I don’t know much about him. I heard he was a little bit nasty. I hear he’s not the brightest bulb,” Trump said.

“But I don’t know much about him. But if he’s at all hostile, he will not be there long.”

Rudd has variously described Trump over the years as “nuts”, a traitor to the West and a threat to democracy. These comments were made before he was appointed to Australia’s most important diplomatic post in late 2022 and they were not outlandish among political commentators at the time. But the Rudd appointment therefore came with a clear asterisk: how might Trump treat Rudd if he became president again?

The calculus inside the ­Albanese government at the time was Rudd was the perfect appointment to our most important diplomatic post because of his gravitas as a former prime minister, a former foreign minister and a China expert. In late 2022 a re-elected Trump seemed a remote possibility and, in any case, even if Trump were re-elected then surely he would forget or forgive comments by Rudd years earlier.

As far as diplomatic gambles go, it did not seem like a huge one. But that was before Trump’s political comeback. He will be the Republican presidential nominee and betting markets have him favourite to defeat Biden.

Foreign Minister Penny Wong responded to Trump’s outburst by making it clear that the government would back Rudd regardless of the election outcome, saying he was “a very effective ambassador” who was “doing an excellent job in advancing Australia’s interest in the United States”, she said.

The behind-the-scenes campaign by Rudd and embassy officials to forge links with key Republicans who have Trump’s ear began in earnest late last year. It has targeted members of Trump’s own family, his campaign team, political influencers, his financial backers and anyone who will potentially play a role in a new Trump cabinet or in a second Trump White House.

The fact Rudd has previously criticised Trump is not something that gets raised in his private meetings with other Republicans, many of whom are unaware of it or who have themselves been critical of Trump in the past. But that does not mean it could not come back to haunt Rudd.


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80104e No.20600272

File: adbb66d8a2b66fa⋯.jpg (451.32 KB,750x743,750:743,KR_27.jpg)

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Rudd has not yet spoken directly with Trump and Trump has form when it comes to being vindictive against diplomatic critics. In 2019, Britain’s ambassador to the US, Kim Darroch, was forced to quit after Trump cut off all contact with him after leaked documents revealed that Darroch had described the Trump administration as dysfunctional, inept and chaotic. Trump also had no hesitation in lashing out at former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull over Barack Obama’s refugee deal shortly after he took office in 2017.

Sources say Rudd has mapped out a clear strategy to woo those closest to Trump. This month Rudd visited the Republican Governor of Texas, Greg Abbott, who Trump has nominated as a potential running mate. “Great to see the Aussie Akubra hat he (Abbott) received as a gift from former PM Malcolm Turnbull hanging in pride of place next to his Texas Stetson,” Rudd tweeted with pictures of himself and the governor.

During that visit Rudd also met Trump’s former director of national intelligence John Ratcliffe.

Last month Rudd met another Republican vice-presidential contender, South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem, saying they were just “a couple of former farm kids trading tales in Washington”.

Rudd has forged a good connection with veteran Republican senator and “Trump whisperer” Lindsey Graham as well as with former Trump national security adviser Robert O’Brien and former Trump Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer. In December Rudd met Ronna McDaniel who, until this month, was chair of the Republican National Committee.

Last month Rudd travelled to Florida where he met Republican senator and former Florida governor Rick Scott as well as former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, son of former president George W Bush. He also visited Utah, meeting Republican governor Spencer Cox.

Many Republicans in Washington have sought Rudd out to tap his expertise on China.

When asked last April about his criticism of Trump, Rudd said: “The bottom line is I’ve been in this town on and off for 30 years, I have bucketloads of Republican friends and bucketloads of Democrat friends, working in foreign policy and national security.”

He said that since taking up his diplomatic posting he had worked “comfortably and seamlessly” with key Republicans such as former House speaker Kevin McCarthy and Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell.

Rudd’s signature success as ambassador so far, apart from helping facilitate a state visit to Washington by Albanese, was the successful passage through Congress of legislation allowing the US to sell Virginia-Class nuclear-powered submarines to Australia.

Former ambassador to the US Joe Hockey said, prior to Trump’s latest comments, that he thought it was unlikely that Trump would act against Rudd. “I think if Donald Trump is elected, on day one he will have a long list of people that he will want to seek vengeance against and Kevin Rudd is not one of them,” Hockey said.

But Trump is unpredictable and he has a vindictive streak. He is now fully aware of Rudd’s previous comments about him. This is dangerous territory for Rudd. The question is whether the solid links being forged between Rudd and many key pro-Trump Republicans will be enough to protect him – and therefore the Australia-US relationship – from the ire of a re-elected Trump.




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80104e No.20600280

File: cbe4a8751034a51⋯.jpg (227.73 KB,1425x801,475:267,Kevin_Rudd_at_his_residenc….jpg)


Kevin Rudd’s Republican mates go quiet after Donald Trump’s hit


The congressional Republicans most likely to come to Kevin Rudd’s defence after he endured sharp criticism from Donald Trump have remained strangely silent.

The two Republicans who lead the Friends of Australia caucus – Mike Gallagher and Senator Dan Sullivan – have not responded to requests for comment over 24 hours since Mr Trump’s comments became public.

The former president described Mr Rudd as “nasty” and “not the brightest bulb” after Nigel Farage brought up the ambassador’s past criticism of Mr Trump.

Similarly, Republican Senator Roger Wicker, whom Mr Rudd worked closely with to ensure critical AUKUS legislation passed congress last year, has also declined to comment via his staff.

The office of Congressman Michael McCaul, chairman of the influential House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee, also didn’t respond.

Mr Rudd declined interviews with Australian media on Wednesday (Thursday AEDT) instead tweeting a picture of himself with Congressman Gallagher outside congressional office buildings.

“Huge week in Congress. House passed legislation on TikTok on 3/13 and voted unanimously to support the digital privacy bill,” Mr Rudd said, suggesting the picture was taken last week.

“Amid all this, I caught up with @repgallagher.”

Anthony Albanese appointed Mr Rudd to the post in December 2022, weeks after Mr Trump launched his re-election bid, despite the ex-Labor prime minister’s criticism of Mr Trump in the past as “nuts”, a “traitor to the West” and “the most destructive president in history”.

Mr Albanese responded furiously in parliament on Wednesday when manager of opposition business Paul Fletcher asked if he would reassess Mr Rudd’s position given Mr Trump’s comments.

Mr Albanese accused the opposition of “cheap politics” and attempting to “politicise Australia’s representative in Washington DC”.

“(This is) something that was never done by this side of the chamber when Arthur Sinodinos occupied that position, when Joe Hockey occupied that position, and when other representatives, including Alexander Downer, ­George Brandis and others (served as) high commissioner to the United Kingdom,” Mr Albanese said.

On Thursday Peter Dutton called on Mr Rudd to repair the relationship with Donald Trump and those around him, arguing Anthony Albanese’s decision to appoint the former Labor prime minister would have been done “against the advice of a lot of his colleagues”.

The Opposition Leader said there was a good chance Mr Rudd would have to step down.

“You’ve got an administration that says it cant work with a particular ambassador, there’s a long history of those people being recalled,” he said.

“I wish Mr Rudd well and that he does good work in our countries name. But… Anthony (Albanese) knew all risks he was facing when he decided to appoint Kevin (Rudd),” he said.

“The onus is on Mr Rudd now to repair the relationship.”


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80104e No.20600296

File: 3fb7c37f0e9dafe⋯.jpg (176.28 KB,2000x1125,16:9,Kevin_Rudd_breaks_silence_….jpg)

File: c497a2f05b329c1⋯.jpg (393.48 KB,750x743,750:743,KR_29.jpg)

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Kevin Rudd breaks silence as Donald Trump feud deepens

Australia’s ambassador to the US Kevin Rudd has shared a cryptic message amid tensions with former president Donald Trump.

Tom Minear - March 21, 2024

The Republican leaders of the US congressional Friends of Australia Caucus have failed to publicly come to Kevin Rudd’s aid after he was blasted by former US president Donald Trump.

Congressman Mike Gallagher and Senator Dan Sullivan did not respond when asked about their party leader’s threat to refuse to work with Australia’s ambassador to the US if he was re-elected in this year’s presidential election.

But Mr Rudd, who has refused to comment on the diplomatic drama, took to social media on Thursday to post photos of himself with Mr Gallagher.

He did not say when the pictures were taken, but referred to the Republican’s role co-chairing the Friends of Australia Caucus, as well as his position chairing the House Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party.

“Huge week in Congress. House passed legislation on Tiktok on 3/13 and voted unanimously to support the digital privacy bill,” Mr Rudd said.

“Amid all this, I caught up with @repgallagher.”

Mr Trump’s comments have received little attention in US media and political circles, with few news outlets reporting on the stoush and only Democratic congressman Joe Courtney issuing a public defence of the ambassador.

Mr Courtney, who also co-chairs the Friends of Australia Caucus, said Mr Rudd was “respected and admired by legislators on both sides of the aisle” in Washington DC.

Mr Trump said Mr Rudd was “a little bit nasty” and “not the brightest bulb”.

“If he’s at all hostile, he will not be there long,” he told conservative British politician turned broadcaster Nigel Farage on GB News.

The spray came in response to a question about Mr Rudd’s pre-ambassadorial comments calling Mr Trump “nuts”, “the most destructive president in history” and a “traitor to the West”.

While the Albanese government defended Mr Rudd and confirmed he would remain in the key diplomatic post even if the former president returned to power, former deputy prime minister Barnaby Joyce said on Thursday that he was “cooked”.

“Now he has to live by those comments and he can’t possibly be the ambassador … because it’s going to affect our relationship with the United States,” Mr Joyce told Channel 9.

“Once (Trump) sets a path, I think that Rudd’s cooked and so you know we might as well drag him back and send him to another country.”

But George Brandis, Australia’s former high commissioner to the United Kingdom, said Mr Rudd had “plainly done a very good job” in Washington DC and deserved bipartisan support.

“I think this has been rather over-interpreted,” he told the ABC.

“Donald Trump is infamous for making rather wild and off-the-cuff claims that don’t in the end amount to very much, so it’s obviously something that the government should keep an eye on but I wouldn’t over-interpret it.”


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80104e No.20600307

File: 30ac885bccbb6a8⋯.jpg (184.63 KB,1280x720,16:9,Clockwise_from_left_Foreig….jpg)

File: acc8f70dab9e7ca⋯.jpg (298.55 KB,2047x1152,2047:1152,New_Zealand_s_Deputy_Prime….jpg)



Penny Wong downplays Paul Keating’s influence ahead of meeting with Chinese envoy Wang Yi



Penny Wong has sent a clear message to China that Paul Keating has no influence over government policy ahead of Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s meeting with the pro-Beijing former prime minister.

In her first comment on Mr Wang’s scheduled audience with Mr Keating on Thursday, Senator Wong told The Australian: “Mr Keating is entitled to his views. He does not speak for the government nor the country.”

The pointed remark follows Mr Keating’s repeated criticism of Senator Wong’s performance as Foreign Minister, and the government’s ongoing warnings over China’s destabilising influence in the region.

Mr Wang will sidestep public scrutiny during his visit to Australia, refusing to appear at a press conference in Canberra with Senator Wong amid ongoing tensions between the nations over a raft of sensitive issues.

In bilateral talks on Wednesday, Senator Wong is expected to raise China’s aggressive behaviour in the South China Sea and express concerns over Beijing’s suspended death sentence for Australian writer Yang Hengjun.

She is also expected to raise China’s poor human rights record, and its remaining trade bans on Australian exports.

Senator Wong invited Mr Wang to attend a joint press conference with her after their closed-door meeting, but he declined. She will front the media alone, offering questions to both Australian and Chinese journalists in a show of transparency.

Senator Wong’s move to downplay Mr Keating’s influence came as Climate Change Minister and Keating confidant Chris Bowen declared the 80-year-old former Labor leader was a “deeply respected” figure across Asia.

“It is entirely usual for a visiting Foreign Minister to seek out a former prime minister, particularly one who played the role he did in Australia finding security in Asia, not from Asia, as Paul Keating did all those years ago,” Mr Bowen told the ABC.

But opposition foreign affairs spokesman Simon Birmingham, who will also meet with Mr Wang on Wednesday, said Mr Keating’s interventions were “reckless and irresponsible”, and had been “clearly welcomed for propaganda purposes elsewhere”.

“I think, frankly, Paul Keating should reconsider his undertaking of this meeting,” Senator Birmingham said.

“I note he’s dialled back some of his usually quite out-there and extreme rhetoric. But in the end, all of our former prime ministers do have a responsibility to be judicious in the use of their offices.”

Mr Wang flew into Sydney late on Tuesday after a stop in New Zealand, where he warned counterpart Winston Peters against joining the AUKUS security pact.

Mr Peters pushed back, telling Mr Wang that concerns over Chinese security threats were not “imaginary”, and New Zealand would choose its own security arrangements.

“It was just a matter of making it very certain that he understood that we did not have imaginary concerns about long-term security,” he told journalists after the meeting.

Mr Wang will fly from Sydney to Canberra for his official program, then head back to Sydney for his meeting with Mr Keating and an event with Chinese community members on Thursday.


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80104e No.20600309

File: 6321457233092af⋯.jpg (199.43 KB,2047x1152,2047:1152,Wang_Yi_on_Tuesday.jpg)



Hundreds of human rights protesters are expected to rally on the lawn outside Parliament House in Canberra as Mr Wang meets with Senator Wong, and later Anthony Albanese.

UTS Associate Professor Feng Chongyi – a close friend of Dr Yang – said Labor had over the past two years “prioritised trade with China at the expense of other principles”.

“Since 2017, 2018, Australia had been in the forefront of the democratic world’s pushback against Chinese political interference, interference, ideological infiltration and espionage,” Dr Feng said.

“And now that momentum has been lost by the Labor administration. When they gave up this agenda, it was actually an act of capital capitulation.”

Dr Feng, who will be among the protesters, said Dr Yang had received two consular visits since his death sentence in February. He said his friend’s health had stabilised, but his kidney condition had not been addressed, and he remained in the custody of China’s Ministry of State Security, rather than in a mainstream facility as would be expected after sentencing.

He said Chinese authorities also continued to deny Dr Yang’s wife an exit permit so she could come to Australia.

On Mr Wang’s 2017 visit to Australia – the last by a senior Chinese official – he joined then foreign minister Julie Bishop for a joint press conference, taking questions on China’s disputed claims in the South China Sea and the prospect of a war with the US.

A year earlier in Canada, he berated a journalist for questioning China’s human rights record and destabilising maritime behaviour. “You have no right to speak on this,” Mr Wang said, to the disbelief of his Canadian hosts.

Lowy Institute senior fellow Richard McGregor said Mr Wang’s overseas press conferences had become more infrequent in recent years. “That’s really in keeping with the times, in which the Chinese government is less and less willing to engage with the Western media,” he said.

Ahead of Mr Wang’s visit, Beijing signalled that its crippling tariffs on Australian wine would be lifted by the end of March. That should see local winemakers reclaim around $500m of the once $1.2bn annual trade with China.

Some Australian lobster industry figures are hopeful for an end to their almost four-year black-listing by China. But others expect a breakthrough in the resumption of the lobster live trade will be held back as a scene-setter for a trip to Australia by Premier Li Qiang, expected in June or July.

A Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade spokeswoman said the government continued to “press for the resolution of the impediments” that had decimated the once $600m live lobster trade.

“The Australian government, including at the highest levels, has consistently advocated for the full resumption of unimpeded Australian exports to China,” the spokeswoman said.

In another closed-door engagement near Parliament House on Wednesday, Mr Wang will meet a select group of Australian business figures, including executives from iron ore giant Rio Tinto and hearing aid maker Cochlear.

Chinese officials moved the meeting at late notice from Sydney to Canberra to accommodate Mr Wang’s audience with Mr Keating on Thursday.

Australia China Business Council national president David Olsson said the 45-minute roundtable was an opportunity to hear from one of China’s most senior government officials about how Beijing views its relationship with Australia “beyond stabilisation”.

“It also enables the Australian business community to share their perspectives and insights on the future direction of the relationship,” Mr Olsson said.


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80104e No.20600321

File: 3076ac622bf4747⋯.jpg (144.66 KB,1200x720,5:3,China_Australia_relation_n….jpg)



China-Australia relation not targeted at third party, nor should be influenced by any third party: Chinese FM Wang Yi

Global Times - Mar 20, 2024

Since the relationship between China and Australia is on the right track, we should not hesitate, deviate, or backtrack, and the development of the bilateral ties is not targeted at any third party, nor should it be influenced or interfered with by any third party, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi told Australian Foreign Minister Penny Wong in Canberra on Wednesday.

Wang held the seventh China-Australia Foreign and Strategic Dialogue with Wong during the former's visit to Australia.

This is our sixth meeting, and each time we meet, mutual trust increases by one point, and the China-Australia relationship advances one step further, Wang told Wong.

The Chinese Foreign Minister said this is an important year that carries on the past and opens up the future. Building on the good momentum of bilateral relations so far, and both China and Australia should "work together to create the future" and, with a more proactive attitude, jointly build a more mature, stable, and fruitful comprehensive strategic partnership.

Over the past 10 years, the ups and downs of China-Australia relations have left us with lessons to learn and experiences to cherish, namely mutual respect, seeking common ground, pursuing mutual benefit, and to uphold independence and autonomy, Wang said.

Wang said China has always pursued an independent foreign policy of peace, and our policy toward Australia has been consistent. The development of China-Australia relations is not directed against any third party, nor should it be influenced or interfered with by any third party.

He noted that since China-Australia relations are on the right track, we should not hesitate, deviate, or backtrack. With a clear direction toward progress, we should strive to move forward steadily, well, and far. This is in the common interest of the two peoples and the general expectation of regional countries.

Wang also said that China is ready to work with Australia to prepare for high-level exchange between two countries and deepen cooperation on traditional field such as mineral, energy and agricultural products; also explore cooperation on new energy, digital economy, green development and coping with climate change.

He urged Australia to take concrete measures to uphold the principles of market economy and fair competition rules, and provide a fair, just, transparent, and non-discriminatory business environment for Chinese enterprises investing and operating in the country.

Wang elaborated with Wong on China's stance on issues related to island of Taiwan, Hong Kong, Xinjiang, Xizang, and the South China Sea, emphasizing that there is no historical entanglement or fundamental conflict of interests between China and Australia, and that their common interests far outweigh their differences.

According to a handout related to the dialogue issued by China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Wong stated that Australia and China have close historical, trade, and cultural ties, and are comprehensive strategic partners. As countries in the same region, differences should not define the relationship between Australia and China.

She said that Australia is pleased to see significant progress in bilateral relations in recent years and is willing to further strengthen dialogue and communication with China on the basis of mutual respect, to manage differences, to leverage complementary advantages, and to deepen cooperation in economic, trade, and cultural fields.

Both sides agreed to resume and establish dialogues in various fields , promote more cooperation across foreign affairs, economic, trade, science and technology, education, and law enforcement departments of the two countries, and actively consider initiating a dialogue on maritime affairs. Both sides agreed to take further measures to facilitate the exchange of people between the two countries.


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80104e No.20600350

File: b442d7efa41b216⋯.jpg (129.71 KB,1361x766,1361:766,Former_PM_Paul_Keating_wit….jpg)

File: b5e615c6d54acac⋯.jpg (271.69 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Paul_Keating_covers_his_fa….jpg)



Paul Keating leaves Chinese consulate after meeting Wang Yi



Paul Keating says Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi showed a “keen understanding of Australia’s strengths” in their private meeting on Thursday, underlining China’s importance to Australia’s economy.

Mr Keating said his hour and five minute meeting with Mr Wang was “very pleasant and engaging”. They had a largely “big picture discussion about the geostrategic balances and influences in the world”, he said.

“The Foreign Minister was very positive about putting bilateral difficulties behind us as he was encouraged by the government’s efforts in restoring appropriate equilibrium between our two countries,” Mr Keating said in a statement after the meeting.

“Minister Wang Yi emphasised China’s ability to keep on growing and strongly, pointing out that China is still only 55 per cent urbanised – another 20 per cent to go.

“He said the world will still benefit from China’s ability to supply high quality relatively low priced goods which will help underwrite higher living standards in the West and other regions of the world.

“He both encouraged and welcomed Australia’s continuing integration with East Asia where he believed Australia’s future lies.

“The Foreign Minister displayed a keen understanding of Australia’s strengths. Its complementarity with China’s own economy and the prospect of ever rising living standards for both countries.”

Mr Keating said Mr Wang was “very positive about putting bilateral difficulties behind us”, and was encouraged by the Albanese government’s efforts to restore “appropriate equilibrium” between the countries.

He said the Chinese envoy was pleased to have spoken to Anthony Albanese and Peter Dutton on Thursday after his “productive meeting” with Foreign Minister Penny Wong.

Mr Keating said the conversation also ranged over the history of the bilateral relationship, including “my relationship with Jiang Zemin and Zhu Rongji in putting together APEC”.

Hours after Mr Keating left the consulate, China’s national broadcaster CCTV released a report on the meeting which was widely republished on Chinese news portals.

“Wang Yi appreciated Keating’s long-term concern and support for the development of China-Australia relations,” CCTV reported.

China’s Foreign Minister told the former prime minister that the two countries should “understand and trust each other” and “pursue win-win co-operation”.

The Chinese broadcaster said Mr Wang noted that Australia was an ally of the United States, but said he added that Canberra was “welcome to independently” make policies based on its “own fundamental interests”.

Mr Keating praised China’s “huge” economy and noted its “vast space for development”, according to CCTV’s account of the meeting which was closed to Australian media.

Mr Keating said it “did not pose a threat to other countries” and was contributing to “regional peace and stability”, according to Chinese state media broadcaster.


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80104e No.20600358

File: 94cd76f792afe1e⋯.jpg (518.21 KB,750x1111,750:1111,SD_2.jpg)

File: 2b8380638d41920⋯.png (165.41 KB,707x768,707:768,GJKbM5tbcAAhO5e.png)



Brief meeting

Mr Keating left the Chinese consulate in Sydney, just over an hour after he arrived for his meeting with Mr Wang.

Shortly before midday, the compound doors opened and Mr Keating’s car left very quickly with a sharp beep at the media scrum waiting outside.

Mr Keating had arrived in a grey Skoda sedan and appeared to cover his face to a photographer from The Australian.

Mr Wang arrived earlier in the morning, around 10.15am, in a motorcade with a police escort. He was accompanied by Chinese ambassador to Australia Xiao Qian.

A film crew, understood to be freelancers working for CGTN — Chinese state media — were earlier allowed into the compound.

Penny Wong on Wednesday sent a clear message to China that the pro-Beijing former prime minister has no influence over government policy ahead of the meeting.

In her first comment on Mr Wang’s scheduled audience with Mr Keating on Thursday, the Foreign Minister told The Australian: “Mr Keating is entitled to his views. He does not speak for the government nor the country.”

The pointed remark follows Mr Keating’s repeated criticism of Senator Wong’s performance as Foreign Minister, and the government’s ongoing warnings over China’s destabilising influence in the region.

Senator Wong’s move to downplay Mr Keating’s influence came as Climate Change Minister and Keating confidant Chris Bowen declared the 80-year-old former Labor leader was a “deeply respected” figure across Asia.

“It is entirely usual for a visiting Foreign Minister to seek out a former prime minister, particularly one who played the role he did in Australia finding security in Asia, not from Asia, as Paul Keating did all those years ago,” Mr Bowen told the ABC.

But opposition foreign affairs spokesman Simon Birmingham, who will also meet with Mr Wang on Wednesday, said Mr Keating’s interventions were “reckless and irresponsible”, and had been “clearly welcomed for propaganda purposes elsewhere”.

“I think, frankly, Paul Keating should reconsider his undertaking of this meeting,” Senator Birmingham said.

China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman in Beijing was asked again on Thursday about the Chinese initiative to set up a meeting with Mr Keating, who has been a loud critic of AUKUS and Senator Wong.

Foreign Minister Wang Yi has refused all engagements with Australian journalists during his three day visit, making the regular daily press conference in Beijing the only opportunity to ask the Chinese government about the trip.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lin Jian defended his boss’s itinerary and said “mutual respect” was fundamental to the bilateral relationship.

“China stands ready to continue our friendly communication and exchange with people of various sectors in Australia,” Mr Lin said.

The Chinese Foreign Minister also met with members of the Australia-China Parliamentary Group on Wednesday in Canberra.

As with all of Mr Wang’s Chinese organised engagements during his visit, no Australian media were invited to the closed door event. It was revealed hours after it took place by China’s official media agency Xinhua.

The Chinese Foreign Minister is scheduled to fly out of Sydney on Thursday evening after an engagement with members of the Australian-Chinese community and the travelling Chinese media pack.



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80104e No.20600399

File: a349fcfa30d243b⋯.jpg (198.17 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Foreign_Minister_Penny_Won….jpg)

File: 2e4336a9470935b⋯.jpg (276.38 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Foreign_Minister_Penny_Won….jpg)

File: 0428afb249fdbf1⋯.jpg (383.59 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Free_Tibet_protesters_on_t….jpg)

File: 79094cf018e2bb5⋯.jpg (351.9 KB,750x714,125:119,AG_1.jpg)

File: fc5953704d03571⋯.mp4 (10.17 MB,960x540,16:9,oxT0_6vgSOsHD5_4.mp4)



Wang Yi’s trip only worsens Australia’s biggest problem with China


The trouble for the Albanese government with a visit like Wang Yi’s is that there was never going to be much to announce.

For Canberra, the top priority has been setting up a future visit by China’s Premier Li Qiang, which Foreign Minister Penny Wong said on Wednesday was “on track”. People familiar with the plans tell me it is likely to be held in June, although the Chinese are intensely secretive about publicising the movements of their leaders so it may not be announced until days before it occurs.

That trip will allow Australia’s Prime Minister Anthony Albanese another opportunity to advocate our national interest to one of Xi Jinping’s top advisers. It is the only way to effectively press our concerns to China’s centralised, top down, Leninist political system.

The lack of announceables has meant various Chinese diplomatic initiatives have instead dominated coverage of the trip. None has loomed larger than Thursday’s brazen meeting between the Chinese Foreign Minister and Paul Keating, one of the Albanese government’s loudest foreign policy critics.

Hours before Senator Wong’s meeting with China’s Foreign Minister, Chinese state media continued the trend. A report in the Global Times suggested Canberra had leant on the independent Anti-Dumping Commission to end duties on Chinese wind turbines. The masthead also suggested it was part of a deal to secure the removal of whooping tariffs on Australian wine, a claim the government denies.

It was an awkward twist to what should be a positive story for the Australian government, the end of Beijing’s wine tariffs (which are expected to be made official by the end of March).

Canberra hopes the upcoming trip by Premier Li will bring more goodies. “They’re keeping the powder dry for the premier,” one China-focused Australian business figure told me.

Mr Li will likely bring good news about the future of the two giant pandas at Adelaide Zoo. “We’re on a good path there to continued panda presence,” Ms Wong said at her Wednesday press conference.

The return of the live lobster trade is also expected. Hopes that the industry might hear good news this week was punctured by the absurd spectacle of a Chinese journalist asking Ms Wong when the trade would resume. Keep in mind, China has never made the ban official — despite not allowing a single live Australian lobster to be legally exported to China since November 2020.

“I think that’s probably a question for the Chinese authorities,” Ms Wong answered, quite rightly.

Australian officials have spent almost four years trying to establish exactly what China’s customs department claims to be the problem, and how to address it. They are still waiting on answers.

There are many questions Australian journalists would have liked to ask Mr Wang — but that would require China’s foreign minister to have fronted up to the media.

Instead, Mr Xi s international affairs adviser slunk off to meet with a group of vetted China-focused business figures, along with two of Chinese state media’s favourite Australian academics: former Defence official Hugh White and ACRI head James Laurenceson.

All this right before Mr Wang travels to Sydney for his audience with Paul Keating, another “voice of reason”.

To be clear, I think it’s a good thing that at least some Australians will have the chance to interact, albeit in a limited way, with the senior Chinese official. And I think Mr White, Mr Laurenceson and Mr Keating often make useful contributions challenging the conventional wisdom in Australia’s China debate.

Late in the day, Mr Wang also meet with Peter Dutton and Simon Birmingham, who had requested an audience with China’s Foreign Minister. That is to be welcomed.

For the most part, the narrowness of the views the Chinese have sought out has been striking. China clearly prefers voices that will tell its Foreign Minister what he wants to hear — a troubling hallmark of the Xi era.

In the prelude to a question at the Wednesday press conference, one of the Chinese journalists remarked: “Many Chinese people believe that the bottleneck in Australia-China relations lies in Australia’s lack of trust in China.”

They are spot on. Most Australians don’t trust China. And is unlikely this secretive trip by one of Mr Xi’s top advisers will change their minds.



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80104e No.20600485

File: b31df73212fcadd⋯.jpg (175.47 KB,1280x720,16:9,Paul_Keating_with_Wang_Yi_….jpg)

File: fe750e963ec45b2⋯.jpg (325.55 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Paul_Keating_leaves_the_Ch….jpg)

File: de2d13b16ee681c⋯.jpg (265.53 KB,2048x1152,16:9,Prime_Minister_Anthony_Alb….jpg)



Paul Keating diminishes himself with made-for-CCTV meeting with Wang Yi


There is a Chinese term for someone who tries to promote the Communist Party, but does it so ineptly they embarrass China. They are called a dijihong, or “low-level red”.

Former Prime Minister Paul Keating and the visiting Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi have both earned the title this week.

Keating has said there was nothing off about his summoning to the Chinese Consulate in Sydney on Thursday. His protests were about as convincing as his claim to being a supporter of the Albanese government’s foreign policy — “most, if not all the time”.

“The Chinese are tickling his ego. Which he loves, of course,” one of Keating’s friends told me.

They were also getting footage for Beijing’s propaganda machine — an important part of China’s statecraft in the Xi era. It’s why Chinese state media were invited into the Consulate to record the meeting, while The Australian’s Noah Yim was kept on the other side of its formidable security fence.

Chinese state media routinely features a certain type of Australian making fools of themselves. The other day, Griffith University’s Colin Mackerras was, once again, in the China Daily, on this occasion telling the masthead that China was neither an autocracy or one-party state. What can you do but laugh?

Keating, however, is a much bigger prize. It is why many of his friends and associates hoped he would have the good sense to decline the Chinese Foreign Minister’s invitation. His ego had other ideas.

Australia’s Foreign Minister Penny Wong’s response to the Keating circus has been pitch-perfect. Her performance at a solo press conference on Wednesday after her meeting with Mr Wang was as impressive as the Chinese Foreign Minister’s decision to avoid it was cowardly.

But, to be fair to China’s foreign minister, he operates in a terrifying political world overseen by Xi Jinping. A press conference in Australia presents endless possible ways to embarrass Beijing and, more problematically for Wang, China’s supreme leader.

If Wang had allowed an Australian or New Zealand journalist to ask even a single question on his five day trans-Tasman trip, he might have been asked what has happened to his predecessor Qin Gang. China’s previous Foreign Minister had been scheduled to visit Australia last year, but was instead “disappeared” into China’s detention network where he, presumably, remains.

“What can he say?” said one person, who has been liaising with Wang’s delegation during the trip.

These are the terms of engagement in Australia’s relationship with China in the second decade of Xi’s reign. When China’s leaders visit, they will bring China’s rules — or they won’t turn up.

The Albanese government has done as well as it could managing that reality. It is in our interest that Canberra keeps talking to Beijing, so long as the Australian government is under no illusions about the limitations China’s political system puts on the relationship.

Wang’s stated desire for “mutual trust” will remain an empty phrase so long as China is this paranoid and controlling.

That has posed challenges for all of the Australians who have agreed to participate in the various Chinese initiatives on this trip.

The Australia China Business Council, for example, banned Australian journalists from their lunch meeting with Wang Yi, while Chinese media were allowed in. It was an incredible double standard for an event held in Canberra, not Beijing.

Worst of all has been the spectacle Keating has allowed China to make of him. Ultimately though, this exercise in Chinese statecraft seems to have backfired.

Its lasting effect will be to undermine trust between the government and Beijing — and to further diminish Potts Point’s most outspoken “low-level red”.



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80104e No.20600494

File: 29ac97f0e5910b9⋯.jpg (143.63 KB,1200x720,5:3,Chinese_Foreign_Minister_W….jpg)



'No backward steps' as China-Australia ties are on right track

Zhao Yusha - Mar 20, 2024


Since China-Australia relations are on the right track, both sides should have no hesitation, no yawing and no backward steps, and China is willing to work with Australia to further prepare for high-level exchanges between the two countries, restart consultation and dialogue mechanisms, and manage differences based on mutual respect, top Chinese diplomat Wang Yi told Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese in Canberra on Wednesday.

After bilateral relations enduring a tumultuous rollercoaster of ups and downs over the past decade, Wang embarked on a visit to Australia at a crucial stage of development of ties. Experts believe that his visit will not only help mend ties and foster mutual trust, but also push forward future development of bilateral relations.

Chinese experts urged Canberra to value the hard-won progress in restoring China-Australia relations and to avoid backtracking, saying the ball is in Australia's court to adopt a balanced perspective on its relationship with China, particularly in light of potential flashpoints such as human rights, the South China Sea, and Australia's alignment with the US in containing China.

Under the strategic guidance of the leaders of both countries, the obstacles encountered in the China-Australia relationship are being overcome, and pending issues are being properly resolved, Wang, Chinese Foreign Minister and also a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, told Albanese.

After the current Labor Party government came to power in Australia, the China-Australia relationship has undergone a second important transformation, which is in line with the interests of the Australian nation and people, as well as the current trend of development, said Wang.

Albanese said that in the past two years, Australia-China relations have returned to the right track, with trade, investment, and people-to-people exchanges becoming active again, continuously sending positive signals and achieving important breakthroughs.

Wang also held the seventh China-Australia Foreign and Strategic Dialogue with Australian Foreign Minister Penny Wong on Wednesday. Wang said the ups and downs of China-Australia relations in the past decade have not only left both sides with lessons to learn from, but also accumulated experience worth cherishing, namely mutual respect, seeking common ground, pursuing mutual benefit, and upholding independence and autonomy, according to a handout of the dialogue published by China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The development of China-Australia relations doesn't target any third party, nor should it be influenced or interfered with by any third party, said the Chinese Foreign Minister.

"Australia seeks a mature, stable and productive relationship with China," Wong wrote on X on Wednesday. "Engagement and dialogue are important and enable us to pursue Australia's interests."

China's relationship with Australia has experienced significant ups and downs in the past decade, from a period of heightened cooperation in 2014 marked by high-level visits and the finalization of a free trade agreement, to a more contentious phase characterized by Australia's increasingly confrontational stance towards China on various issues, Ning Tuanhui, an assistant research fellow at the China Institute of International Studies, told the Global Times.

Ning noted Wang's visit came at a crucial juncture for the two countries to engage in dialogue on mutual concerns and work toward rebuilding trust. He described the Chinese foreign minister's reflections on past experiences in developing bilateral relationship as a guide for shaping the future direction of the relationship and help to steer it back to a positive trajectory.

Wang also said China is ready to work with Australia to prepare for high-level exchanges between the two countries.

High-level mutual visits are expected to play an important guiding role in enhancing the relationship between the two countries, said experts.

No backward steps

In her opening remarks, Wong said she looks forward to speaking frankly with Wang about issues such as human rights, maritime security and other regional as well as international issues.

Wang elaborated with Wong on China's principled position on the Taiwan question and issues related to Hong Kong, Xinjiang, Xizang and the South China Sea, stressing that there is no entanglement of historical problems or conflict of fundamental interests between China and Australia, and their common interests far outweigh the differences.


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80104e No.20600499

File: 1adeb1234a6cf3f⋯.jpg (91.87 KB,1024x683,1024:683,Chinese_Foreign_Minister_W….jpg)



Although bilateral ties are expected to further stabilize after Wang's visit, Chinese experts still pointed out that human rights issue, Australia's interference in South China Sea issue and Canberra's willingness to follow Washington's Asia-Pacific strategy of containing China remain potential flashpoints.

In November last year, the Philippines and Australia began their first joint sea and air patrols in the South China Sea, a move which is targeted at China. The patrol came days after Manila took similar steps with the US.

"Whether those potential flashpoints will trigger new conflicts depends largely on whether Australia will take new or excessive moves to provoke China," said Ning. He believes that making biased accusations or unfair judgment against China is unacceptable.

Chen Hong, director of the Australian Studies Center of East China Normal University, said the administration of former Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison was eager to serve as vanguard of the US to contain China. Yet such move has greatly harmed not only bilateral ties, but also Australia's interests.

In March last year, the US, the UK and Australia unveiled a roadmap for their AUKUS military cooperation. However, recently US President Joe Biden administration's new defense budget has halved its submarine production to the construction of just one Virginia-class submarine in 2025, down from an anticipated two.

This has raised questions over Washington's ability to fulfill its commitment to sell Canberra up to five of the nuclear-powered vessels starting in the 2030s.

Chen noted that it is not realistic for Australia to shake off influence from the US completely, but Canberra should stick to its strategic autonomy when dealing with China-related issues, and cherish the "hard-won" result achieved to restore China-Australia ties. "Just don't backtrack."

Broad exchanges

In Canberra, Wang also met with people from Australia's business, think tank representatives and other industries. He said now that China-Australia relations have embarked on a path of improvement, the two should take big steps forward to build a more stable and mature comprehensive strategic partnership, which will benefit the people of both countries and regional countries.

"For a whole host of reasons, whether it's the pandemic or just the way domestically politically we have approached China, the fact is our understanding of China and its role in the region and world is not as strong as it used to be," David Olsson, national president of Australia China Business Council, the organization who hosted the meeting between Wang, told reporters.

Chinese experts believed that once the Australia's business industry see the prospects of repaired bilateral ties, their interaction with China will further push for development of relations between the two countries.

Chen said economic and trade relations play a crucial role in China-Australia relations. Without the foundation of such a relationship, the recovery and improvement of bilateral ties would not have been as quick and easy.

Former Australian Prime Minister Paul Keating, who has criticized Australia's AUKUS nuclear submarine deal with the US, was quoted by Reuters as saying that he would meet Wang Yi this week in a bid to improve bilateral ties.

Australian opposition foreign affairs spokesman Simon Birmingham, along with a small number of Australian politicians, criticized the meeting, media reported.

Ning observed that the attitudes of Australian politicians reflect a lingering conservative perspective among some Australians regarding China's relationship with their country. This perspective is characterized by deep-rooted distrust and suspicion towards China.

Wang also met with Peter Dutton, leader of the Opposition. During the meeting, Wang said the development of China-Australia relations is the result of the joint efforts of all political parties in Australia. China is willing to maintain communication and cooperation with friends from all walks of life in Australia, and work together to build a more mature, stable and fruitful comprehensive strategic partnership, Wang said.


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80104e No.20600525

File: 6a7954d46333f05⋯.jpg (182.72 KB,1280x871,1280:871,WikiLeaks_founder_Julian_A….jpg)

File: 42cae7d7dfa4c03⋯.jpg (217.56 KB,1280x853,1280:853,Stella_Assange_Julian_Assa….jpg)


Julian Assange, Justice Department Exploring Guilty Plea to End 14-Year Legal Drama

WikiLeaks founder is locked in legal battle to avoid extradition to U.S.

Aruna Viswanatha and Max Colchester - March 20, 2024


The U.S. Justice Department is considering whether to allow Julian Assange to plead guilty to a reduced charge of mishandling classified information, according to people familiar with the matter, opening up the possibility of a deal that could eventually result in his release from a British jail.

Assange, the divisive WikiLeaks founder, is fighting a drawn-out legal battle with the British government to avoid being extradited to the U.S. to face trial for publishing thousands of confidential U.S. military records and diplomatic cables around 2010. A U.K. court is currently considering whether to allow a last-ditch appeal by the 52-year-old. After U.S. prosecutors charged him in 2019, U.K. law-enforcement officials apprehended him, and he has been in a London prison ever since.

Justice Department officials and Assange’s lawyers have had preliminary discussions in recent months about what a plea deal could look like to end the lengthy legal drama, according to people familiar with the matter, a potential softening in a standoff filled with political and legal complexities. The talks come as Assange has spent some five years behind bars. U.S. prosecutors face diminishing prospects that he would serve much more time even if he were convicted stateside.

The discussions remain in flux, and talks could fizzle. Any deal would require approval at the highest levels of the Justice Department. Barry Pollack, a lawyer for Assange, said he has been given no indication that the department will take a deal. A Justice Department spokesman declined to comment.

If prosecutors allow Assange to plead to a U.S. charge of mishandling classified documents—something his lawyers have floated as a possibility—it would be a misdemeanor offense. Under such a deal, Assange potentially could enter that plea remotely, without setting foot in the U.S. The time he has spent behind bars in London would count toward any U.S. sentence, and he would likely be free to leave prison shortly after any deal was concluded.

Britain’s High Court is expected to decide within weeks whether to grant Assange a further right to appeal his extradition to the U.S. If the court rules against him, the U.S. government will likely have 28 days to come and collect Assange and bring him to face trial.

WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of classified documents, prompting U.S. prosecutors in 2019 to charge him under a U.S. espionage law. He faces 18 counts of conspiring to disclose classified information and hack a military computer in relation to WikiLeaks’ releases, which painted a highly critical picture of America’s actions in Iraq and Afghanistan. Lawyers for Assange have argued that he merely published information given to him, much as a journalist would, and so shouldn’t face punishment.

An extradition would throw a political hot potato into the lap of the Biden administration. The Justice Department has long struggled with how to proceed against Assange because there are some parallels between his work and that of the press, whose right to publish is generally protected by the First Amendment.


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80104e No.20600529

File: 93002a74860e47b⋯.jpg (306.3 KB,1280x882,640:441,Assange_on_the_balcony_of_….jpg)



Trump-era Justice Department officials who charged Assange sought to differentiate his work from journalism because they alleged Assange solicited the classified material and knew its publication would jeopardize lives. The Obama administration also considered charging him but declined because of concerns about how it could affect conventional journalism.

Chelsea Manning, the former U.S. Army intelligence analyst who was convicted of leaking government secrets to WikiLeaks, served seven years in prison. Legal experts said any possible sentence for Assange would likely be less than what Manning served. Assange has fought a winding, and at times surreal, campaign to avoid a U.S. trial. He was initially dogged by allegations of rape in Sweden in 2010. He sought asylum in the Ecuadorean Embassy in London in 2012 and holed up there for years, fathering two children, hosting guests including model Pamela Anderson and pop star Lady Gaga.

He continued to lead WikiLeaks through the publication in 2016 of tens of thousands of documents the U.S. says were stolen from Democrats by Russian government hackers. Those efforts led U.S. officials to describe WikiLeaks as a tool of Russian intelligence that participated in a plot to denigrate then-Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and bolster the candidacy of Donald Trump.

The Swedish rape investigation was dropped. Assange outstayed his welcome in the cramped Ecuadorean Embassy where he angered officials by not cleaning up after his cat, skateboarding in the hallway and allegedly leaking personal information about Ecuador’s president to a rival.

After being kicked out of the embassy, Assange was promptly jailed in London. A British judge ruled Assange had a history of evading justice and so should be kept in Belmarsh prison awaiting decision on his U.S. extradition. In January 2021, a British judge ruled Assange should not be extradited, saying his mental health meant he would be at risk of suicide if convicted and held in a maximum-security prison.

But that decision was overturned after an appeal by U.S. authorities who gave a package of assurances, including a pledge he could be transferred to his native Australia to serve any sentence.

Last month, U.K. judges in the High Court heard claims by Assange that he faced prosecution for his political views and that extradition would be an attack on his right to free speech—an argument they are expected to rule on soon.

In a filing to the U.K. court, lawyers representing the U.S. government said that Assange threatened “the strategic and national security interests of the United States and put the safety of individuals at serious risk.”

Even if plea talks don’t result in a deal and Assange is sent to the U.S. for trial, he may not stay for long, given the Australia pledge.

The Australian government, which has largely been supportive of Assange, could shorten any sentence once he landed on Australian soil, said Nick Vamos, a partner at London law firm Peters & Peters and a former head of extradition for England and Wales’s Crown Prosecution Service. “I honestly think as soon as he arrived in Australia he would be released,” he said.

Assange’s wife, Stella Assange, who led a rally of supporters outside the High Court while judges deliberated last month, said that her husband’s mental and physical health had deteriorated significantly while incarcerated and he would not face a fair trial in the U.S. “Julian’s life is at risk,” she said. Assange didn’t attend the hearing because he was sick, his lawyers said.


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80104e No.20600532

File: e147c7193837ab2⋯.jpg (1.91 MB,3080x3712,385:464,Julian_Assange_leaves_Lond….jpg)



Assange supporters welcome possible plea deal with US

Matthew Knott - March 21, 2024

Julian Assange’s supporters say they are thrilled by the prospect of a plea deal with the United States Justice Department that would allow the WikiLeaks founder to avoid the threat of a lengthy jail term in America.

The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday that the Justice Department was considering whether to allow Assange to plead guilty to a reduced charge of mishandling classified information rather than more serious espionage charges, citing people familiar with the matter.

Such a deal would potentially allow Assange to enter a plea to the misdemeanour charge remotely, and walk free without travelling to the US, which has been seeking his extradition from the United Kingdom for years.

Assange’s legal team said it was inappropriate to comment while his case was before the UK High Court other than to say it had been given no indication that the US Justice Department intended to resolve the case.

“The United States is continuing with as much determination as ever to seek his extradition on all 18 charges, exposing him to 175 years in prison,” Assange’s Washington-based lawyer, Barry Pollack, said in a statement.

A spokesperson for the Justice Department declined to comment on the report.

Independent MP Andrew Wilkie, one of Assange’s biggest champions in federal parliament, said many Australians would be heartened by the report of a possible deal.

“Personally, I’d be thrilled with a breakthrough because this injustice has been wrong from the start and must be brought to an end,” he said.

Wilkie, who travelled to the UK for Assange’s most recent extradition appeal hearing, added: “In any case, the US extradition should be abandoned, the charges dropped and Julian reunited with his family and allowed to return home.

“However, we need to be mindful that it’s entirely up to Julian to decide what is the best way forward for him from here.”

US ambassador to Australia Caroline Kennedy flagged a possible plea deal in an interview with this masthead last year, saying “there absolutely could be a resolution” to the Assange case.

The WSJ said that in recent months, officials at the Justice Department and Assange’s legal team had had preliminary discussions about a plea deal but the discussions “remain in flux and the talks could fizzle”.

Assange is battling extradition to the US, where he is wanted on criminal charges over the release of confidential US military records and diplomatic cables in 2010. Washington says the release of the documents put lives in danger.

Assange’s supporters say he has been victimised because he exposed US wrongdoing, including in conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Multiple rights groups, leading media organisations and the leaders of countries such as Mexico, Brazil and Australia have urged the charges against Assange, who is an Australian citizen, be dropped.

Assange has been languishing in a UK prison since 2019, after the US charged him and police dragged him from the Ecuadorian embassy in London.


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80104e No.20606157

File: d8978b3cc9de3c1⋯.jpg (264.29 KB,1920x1280,3:2,Unearthed_video_shows_now_….jpg)


Sky News obtains footage of Kevin Rudd mocking and ridiculing Donald Trump during former president's first term

Sky News has obtained footage of current Australian Ambassador to the United States Kevin Rudd’s blistering assessment of Donald Trump, labelling the then president a “political liability” and a “problem for the world” in speeches during Trump's first term.

Tyrone Clarke - March 21, 2024


The Australian Ambassador to the US Kevin Rudd’s ability to work constructively with the Trump administration if he is to secure the presidency in the upcoming November election may be uncertain, as more examples resurface of the former prime minister making politically charged and highly offensive comments about Trump during his last term in office.

Mr Rudd’s previous remarks about Donald Trump have dominated headlines in Australia and around the world over the past 24-hours after the former president was asked about Rudd’s assessment of him as a “destructive president” and a “traitor to the west”.

In an interview with Nigel Farage on GB News, the presumptive Republican nominee for the 2024 presidential election hit back saying he has heard Rudd is “nasty” and “not the brightest bulb”.

The explosive comments