The Guardian • Issue #2095


  • The Guardian
  • Issue #2095

In Nazi-occupied France in WW2 the collaborationist Vichy government changed the words on French coins from the revolutionary “Liberty, Fraternity, Equality” to a motto better suited to its repressive regime: “Work, Family, Fatherland.”

Nationalism and militarism are also being assiduously promoted by the Prime Minister. Albanese takes every opportunity to be seen among the troops and will on Anzac Day have a walk on the Kokoda Trail in PNG where Australian troops fought against the Japanese occupation. At the same time as talking peace, the government is actively preparing for war. Its policies alongside its open-ended military budget are aimed at propelling Australia into war in Asia sometime in the future.

In the economic sphere Albanese and his little gang of US proxies pursue privatisation, anti-labour laws, and worship the god of profits. They obscure many of their far-reaching objectives with soft-peddle propaganda that uses such terms as “family values.” The control of Parliament by both major parties, has enabled governments to strip many basic human and democratic rights. The limited protections that have curtailed the most extreme ravages of employers for the past century have been stripped. The dishonestly named “anti-terror laws” destroy a number of long held basic legal rights and extend police state powers – including the right to kill civilians – to the armed forces.

So, what to put on our coinage? Dingo would suggest “In Service to Uncle Sam,” but can we have a president and a king?

Environmental activists Greenpeace has warned that its future is under financial threat because of legal action by oil giant Shell. It says its work will be in jeopardy if it loses a court case in which the company is demanding $1 million in damages after activists occupied a drilling platform being towed in the Atlantic last year.

The case is due to go to trial in July.

Greenpeace says it is facing similar legal action by Big Oil in the United States and Italy and has launched an appeal for donations to help it fight in court. Ian Duff, who heads Greenpeace’s “Stop Drilling, Start Paying” campaign, said: “Greenpeace is under attack globally like never before. Right now, our colleagues in Italy, the USA, and here in the UK are all targets of intimidation lawsuits from oil giants, strategically deployed with one aim: silence anyone brave enough to stand up to their planet-wrecking business.”

He said it was an “outrage” that multibillion-dollar companies were suing a non-profit organisation. “Let’s be clear – it’s not about the money,” he said. “Shell makes the $1 million it is suing us for every half an hour. It’s because we’re confronting them and threatening their ability to recklessly profit from destruction.

“We won’t stop until they stop.”

PARASITE OF THE WEEK: AUKUS. This band of lackeys signed up provisional members Japan and Canada, last week with a grand pronouncement: “Today we announce our vision to cooperate on a networked air defence architecture …” In response, Mao Ning from China’s Foreign Ministry said the US was “cobbling together small groupings“ in the region. “They have been stoking confrontation in the name of cooperation, flexing muscles in the name of peace, and sowing chaos in the name of order. This is no doubt an act of hegemonism.”

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