Stop Abbott’s attacks on Muslims: no to Islamophobia; no to the anti-terror laws; no to attacks on civil liberties; no war in Iraq

Standard

19 October 2014

Islamophobia is a form of cultural racism and racial vilification which has been prominent in Western Society since the start of the “War on Terror” in 2001. Attacks on the Muslim and Arab Communities of Australia have escalated in recent weeks in the wake of the so-called “terror raids” which have targeted the Muslim and Arab communities. Ordinary Australians from all backgrounds have been horrified at the greenlight given to racists by the Australian Abbott government and are taking a stand to say no to racism and Islamophobia.  Racism in all it’s forms shouldn’t be tolerated in a Multicultural Society was one of the key sentiments of the ‘No to Islamophobia’ demonstration which took place today in Melbourne.

Today’s rally opposed the Abbott government’s use of the politics of fear to promote a wave of racist attacks on the Muslim and Arab communities. Prime Minister Tony Abbott and his government, aided by the mainstream media, have sought to create a moral panic by scapegoating the Muslim and Arab communities in order to fast track through laws restricting civil liberties and to distract from their unpopular budget.

The widely publicised “terror raids” and Abbott’s march to war, coupled with the government’s dogwhistle racism has given a green light to racists and bigots. In the last month, we have seen knife wielding attackers enter Muslim schools to threaten school children and teachers and Muslim women attack on the streets because of what they wear, including a terrifying attack where a Muslim woman was beaten and pushed from a train.

Speakers at today’s rally included:

  • Adel Salman, Member of the Islamic Council of Victoria
  • Adam Bandt, Deputy Leader of the Australian Greens
  • Aseel Sammak, Muslim Students Association of Victoria
  • Heba Bendak, Federation of Australian Muslim Students and Youth
  • Jeff Sparrow, Author, Journalist and writer for the Guardian

 

IMG_8693

Aboriginal activist, Viv Malo give acknowledgement of country and speaks about racism in Australia, against both the Aboriginal community and the Muslim and Arab communities.

IMG_8698 IMG_8702

Adam Bandt, Deputy Leader of the Australian Greens speaks at the rally

IMG_8697 IMG_8719

Heba Bendak, Federation of Australian Muslim Students and Youth

IMG_8735

Jeff Sparrow, author and journalist.

IMG_8720IMG_8774

IMG_8782

IMG_8788 IMG_8795  IMG_8816 IMG_8819

IMG_8809IMG_8811 IMG_8814

IMG_8831

Aboriginal activists in solidarity with the Muslim and Arab communities

IMG_8847 IMG_8864 IMG_8871 IMG_8850

Advertisements

Melbourne Stop the War on Refugees Rally – 11 October 2014

Standard

 

*Permanent protection not temporary visas
*No Cambodia Deal
*No Boat Tow Backs
*No Offshore or Onshore Detenion
*Stop the scapegoating of refugees and Muslims

Scott Morrison and Tony Abbott’s war on refugees has been going on for almost a year now – after Kevin Rudd’s PNG deal paved the way for them. The war on refugees gets uglier by the day. Reza Barati was murdered, one man was shot, one had his throat cut and two men lost their eyes, in unprovoked attacks on asylum seekers on Manus Island by those who should have been responsible for their safety. Asylum seekers have been directly returned to their persecutors in Sri Lanka. 157 Tamil asylum seekers were kept prisoner in cramped windowless berths on the high seas for a month – Morrison was only forced to acknowledge their existence and bring them to Australia because of the efforts of the refugee movement. Rates of self-harm and mental health problems in detention are skyrocketing, they approach 50% on Manus Island. Children and babies are being kept on the hell-hole of Nauru, without access to decent education. Onshore and offshore detention and deterrence is costing close to $4 billion per year. Let Abbott know he can’t revive his political fortunes in the wake of his unfair budget by kicking refugees. This cruelty must stop. Join us on the first anniversary of Operation Sovereign Borders to demand an end to detention and deterrence, and instead welcome refugees, who should have the right to work in the Australian community while their claims are assessed.

IMG_8635IMG_8633IMG_8627IMG_8611IMG_8610IMG_8617  IMG_8612 IMG_8618 IMG_8622 IMG_8625 IMG_8637IMG_8626

 

 

 

 

Some Block B fun …

Standard

Oh dear, I can’t believe its been 6 weeks or so since I last posted something! To make up for such a long absence, here is Block B with their dance practice version of their latest single, Her.     And as an added bonus:

First Dog on the Moon: Meanwhile in Gaza …

Standard

First Dog on the Moon (Andrew Marlton) is an Australian Walkley Award winning political cartoonist and satirist. His cartoons appear regularly in The Guardian.

First Dog on the Moon also has his own website, which you can check out here.

This cartoon first appeared in The Guardian’s online edition on 21 July, 2014

 

gazadog

Between Shame and Relief I Stand – A confession by Samah Sabawi

Standard

 

Dear friends,

this beautiful and moving poem about Gaza is by my good friend Samah Sabawi. Samah has kindly given me permission to reproduce it. It has already been posted on my Live from Occupied Palestine blog, but I also wanted to share on Red Butterfly Effect.

Samah is a Palestinian-Australian poet and playwright, who writes regularly for a range of media websites on Palestine and human rights. She is currently preparing for the premier of her latest play, Tales of A City by the Sea, which is a Palestinian story of love, separation and resistance set in Gaza. The play will premier in November in Melbourne.

Samah tweets at @gazaheart and you can check out her website, Tales of a City by the Sea by clicking here.

in solidarity, Kim

samah's poem - Between Shame and Relief

 

Solidarity with Gaza and Palestine

Standard

french protest smoke colours   French activists in Paris release smoke in Palestinian colours in solidarity with Gaza

Dear friends,

I have not had a lot of time to post on Red Butterfly Effect this month due to Israel’s brutal assault on Gaza, which has now claimed the lives of more than 1050 people – the majority of whom are civilian, including hundreds of children. As a result, my focus has primarily been on the Gaza/Palestine solidarity campaign, including regularly updating my Palestine blog, Live from Occupied Palestine. with updates about what is happening in Gaza and the rallies in support of Gaza and the Palestinian people have been taking place both in Australia and Internationally. 

If you are interested in being updated on the situation in Gaza and the Australian and international solidarity campaign, you can check out Live from Occupied Palestine by clicking here.

Here are some direct links to photo essays of the Gaza solidarity rallies in Melbourne, around Australia and internationally.

Photo Essay: Melbourne Rally Against Israel’s Brutality in Palestine – 12 July 2014

Video & Photos: From around the world – Protests for Gaza and Palestine against Israel’s aggression.

Melbourne stands with Palestine: No to Israel’s war crimes in Gaza – 19 July 2014

Photo Essay: Australian rallies for Gaza against Israel’s war crimes – 19 & 20th July 2014

Melbourne stands with Gaza: Thousands stand in solidarity with Palestine, call for the Australian govt to break ties with Apartheid Israel

I have included below just some of the tweets from journalists and Palestinians in Gaza on the situation there (click on image to enlarge). 

in solidarity, Kim

B1 saftawi 8 laragaza scape

laz5 reuters2un4un51cnnFireShot Screen Capture #330 - 'Twitter _ MMVickery_ This is #Gaza_ Plumes of smoke ___' - twitter_com_MMVickery_status_492035542264328192shajiyacnn1FireShot Screen Capture #248 - 'Twitter _ JFXM_ #Gaza medics breaking down ___' - twitter_com_JFXM_status_490996797096349696larsim2reuters3childrenp2  FireShot Screen Capture #328 - 'Twitter _ millerC4_ #c4news #Gaza A uni prof who ___' - twitter_com_millerC4_status_491522733864669184FireShot Screen Capture #433 - 'Twitter _ AFP_ Gazans dig dead from rubble ___' - twitter_com_AFP_status_493061854286323713kel1kelFireShot Screen Capture #441 - 'Twitter _ sheikhNB_ One by one, members of the ___' - twitter_com_sheikhNB_status_492961620448919552

 

  

 

Melbourne: Union and Community Protest against the Abbott/Hockey Federal Budget – 6 July 2014

Standard

A selection of photos from the Melbourne July 6 Trade Union and Community Bust the Budget rally and march: An estimated 5,000 to 10,000  turned out to oppose Tony Abbott and Joe Hockey’s classwar budget attacking workers, students, pensioners and the poor.

All photos: Kim Bullimore  (click individual photos to view enlarged version)

IMG_7238 IMG_7239 IMG_7240 IMG_7241 IMG_7243 IMG_7246IMG_7248 IMG_7249 IMG_7252 IMG_7253 IMG_7255 IMG_7257 IMG_7259 IMG_7267IMG_7268IMG_7270IMG_7271IMG_7279IMG_7282IMG_7283IMG_7286IMG_7290IMG_7291IMG_7296IMG_7297IMG_7305IMG_7308IMG_7310 IMG_7314 IMG_7316  IMG_7334 IMG_7338IMG_7350 IMG_7351IMG_7324 IMG_7354 IMG_7364 IMG_7366 IMG_7369 IMG_7371

Music: Eyes, Nose, Lips Cover Project

Standard

Taeyang from my favourite Korean idol group, Big Bang released his first song of his new album on June 3.  A few weeks later, his label YG Entertainment announced they would be embarking on a Cover Project where its artists would do covers of songs by other artists on their label.  The first one being a cover of Taeyang’s Eyes, Nose, Lips.

While I am a big fan of Akdong Musician and have been playing their new album PLAY non-stop for weeks, it is actually Tablo’s reimagined version with new lyrics, which is my favourite so far. This is not surprising given I have been a long time fan of Tablo and Epik High, with them probably being my all time favourite Korean hip hop group (with Drunken Tiger and Soul Dive coming just after them).

In the last day or so, Eric Nam, who originally came to public attention by covering kpop songs on youtube, has released an english language version of the song.   I doubt any of my favourite Korean indie rock groups will release a version of the song, but if they did I am sure they would also do an amazing job!

 

TAEYANG – original release

 

AKDONG MUISCIAN

 

TABLO – Reimagined version (with new lyrics in english by Tablo)

 

ERIC NAM –  english version of original Taeyang version

Kdrama Review: Inspiring Generation

Standard

inspiring-age-2-800x412

  • English Title: Inspiring Generation (also known as “Age of Feeling”)
  • Revised romanization: Gamgyukshidae : Tooshinui Tansaeng
  • Hangul: 감격시대 : 투신의 탄생
  • Director: Kim Jung-Kyu
  • Writer: Bang Hak-Ki (comic), Chae Seung-Dae (ep.1-10), Park Kye-Ok (ep.11-24)
  • Network: KBS2
  • Episodes: 24
Inspiring Generation-Kim Hyun-Joong.jpg Inspiring Generation-Lim Soo-Hyang.jpg Inspiring Generation-Jin Se-Yeon.jpg Inspiring Generation-Kim Jae-Wook.jpg Inspiring Generation-Kim Kap-Soo.jpg
Kim Hyun-Joong Lim Soo-Hyang Jin Se-Yeon Kim Jae-Wook Kim Kap-Soo
Shin Jung-Tae Gaya Teguchi Kim Ok-Ryeon Kim Soo-Ok Doyama Denkai
Inspiring Generation-Choi Jae-Sung.jpg Inspiring Generation-Son Byung-Ho.jpg Yoon Hyun-Min Inspiring Generation-Song Jae-Rim.jpg Kim Sung-Oh
Choi Jae-Sung Son Byung-Ho Yoon Hyun-Min Song Jae-Rim Kim Sung-Oh
Shin Young-Chool Choi Soo-Ri Aoki Denkai Mo Il-Hwa Jong Jae-Hwa

First and foremost, I loved Inspiring Generation, despite it having many, many, many, many faults and flaws. I loved Kim Hyun Joong and his character, Shin Jung-Tae. I loved the period setting, the sets and the costuming. I loved the artwork and promotional posters for the series, which are just visually stunning. I loved the young actors, who played the main characters in their youth in the first four episodes of the series. I loved the brilliantly choreographed fight scenes, despite them being quite violent and bloody. I love that the drama had a cast of thousands – well not quite a cast of thousands, but I loved that the drama was populated with so many characters big and small, which gave it a more realistic feel too it.  But while there was much to love about Inspiring Generation, there was also many, many, many, many faults and flaws with the series as well. And it should be said these many faults and flaws were not inconsequential.

Based of the comic of the same name which was published in the Sports Seoul from 1985 until 1988, Inspiring Generation (also known as Age of Feeling) is set during the 1920s and 1930s against the back drop of the Japanese occupation of Korea and China. A film-noir style drama, it spans a period of more than 20 years and travels between Korea, Manchuria and Shanghai. It tells the tale of Shin Jung-Tae, a young man from a poor family, who becomes a street fighter and smuggler, in order to aid his family.

When news of Inspiring Generation first hit dramasites, I was very excited to hear that it would include two of my favourites, Kim Hyun Joong and Kim Jae Wook. It was therefore quite disappointing when Kim Jae-wook, whose character was to be the second male lead, bowed out of the series after appearing in just three episodes (with his last appearance being in episode 8).

Kim Hyun Joong has long been one of my favourite Hallyu stars. SS501 is one of my top five favourite kpop idol groups and I love his solo music. One of my favourite things about Kim Hyun Joong has always been his personality: not only does he come across as being very down-to-earth and blunt (which I love), I am a big fan of his sense of humour which can be best described as both deadpan and 4D (a Korean term for eccentric, quirky, off-the-wall personality/humour). I particularly loved watching him teamed up with Hwangbo in the Korean variety show, We Got Married, where you really got to see his hilarious and eccentric sense of humour.

Kim Hyun Joong’s first drama was Boys over Flowers, which helped skyrocket him into becoming one of the biggest names in Hallyu. Despite loving him in Boys Over Flowers and later Playful Kiss, the reality was that his acting wasn’t great. So as keen as I was to watch him in Inspiring Generation, I did approach the show with some trepidation because of this. But I think its safe to say that Kim Hyun Joong did a great job at silencing his critics and surprised us all with how much he has improved as an actor.

Unfortunately, however, despite some very fine acting from Kim Hyun Joong and many other of the cast members of Inspiring Generation, as mentioned the series had many, many problems and faults. From the beginning, the series was plagued with a seemingly never-ending series of financial and production problems. Not only were (and still apparently is) problems with actors not being paid, actors dropping out of the series (such as Kim Jae Wook who played Kim Soo-ok) there was also changes in writers. And while I love the fact that the drama was filled with “a cast of thousands”, so to speak, it also should be said that such a large cast did also contribute to creating some of the problems with the series – for example making it difficult for some characters to be fleshed out and remaining underdeveloped due to pressures to develop new characters or other characters. All of this, unfortunately impacted on the quality and direction of the drama. The initial change of writers at the end of episode 10 didn’t have as big an impact as I had original expected and for the first 14 or 16 episodes of 24 episode series, the writing was fairly consistent and reasonably good. However, towards the end of the series, the writing consistently went down hill.

Not only were there big gaps in the plot and character developments, many central characters were just left to flounder (e.g. the female lead of Kim Ok-ryeon played by Jin Se-yeon and Song Jae-rim’s character of Mo Il-wa). Other character’s storylines became confusing and nonsensical (such as Um Tae-goo’s character of Do Ggoo). Whole storylines were either put on the back burner, forgotten or abandoned, such as the backstory of the freedom fighters opposing the Japanese occupation which was one of the things that initially made me excited to watch the drama, but also the storyline around Shin Tae-jung’s missing sister (which was originally a central driving force for Jung-Tae’s actions).

But despite this and at times feeling quite frustrated with the series (especially towards the end), I still loved it. Perhaps this is because it was possible to visualise very clearly what the series could have been, if it had been able to rid itself of such faults and flaws. I think if it had been able to do that, than Inspiring Generation would definitely have shot up into being one of my top 5 favourite Korean dramas, but alas that has not been the case. I think the reason I am still able to love the series, despite all its faults and flaws, is because the writers and producers initially did such a good job with the series in the first quarter of episodes. As a result, it made it possible to retain a lot of goodwill towards the rest of the series, even as its faults and flaws began to mount up.

So despite all of this, I still would recommend checking out the drama, not only to check out Kim Hyun Joong vastly improved acting skills but because there is still a lot to enjoy about the series,  including some wonderful quirky and fun characters, some terrific acting by many of the central characters (including by the young actors depicting them in their youth), the brilliantly choreographed fight scenes and much more. And hopefully, you too will fall in love with series like I did.

 

 

 

Inspring gen 3 in one posters

inspriing gen - tripcast costumes inspiring gen