Daily Archives: April 30, 2008

Overdue catchup for Aussie gays and lesbians

There is no doubt this is good news, so far as it goes: Matching rights for gay couples, Government moves on gay reform, and Opposition gives qualified support. That last story:

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Other blogs

There’s food for thought on Jim Belshaw’s blog in two recent posts. I think it is fair to say these posts transcend party politics, as they refer to a managerial style that cuts across the party divisions; it is a style I am only too familiar with from my experiences in the NSW Department of Education in the last ten to fifteen years. Whether Jim is entirely on the mark or being just a little bit nostalgic I will leave you to judge, but it is fair to say he writes from considerable experience.

The posts are:

Wombat’s Waffles is back on the air. Davo has obviously had quite a time of it in the last twelve months, but the recent posts show that the steps he has taken seem to be paying off:

After the trauma, despair and angst of the previous year, my life has settled into an almost zen-like pattern of simplicity, peace and tranquility (though there are still a few ‘legal’ tentacles from the past that have yet to be dealt with – choking off any attempt to truly ‘break free’; more about that, later).

After many months, perhaps years, of intermittent and sparse rainfall – the weather Pixies have blessed this area with a gentle, soaking patter of rainfall which began yesterday afternoon and has continued all night. I don’t, as yet, frequent the pubs around here so don’t know much about the local “gossip”, but do know that some of the farmers in the area began “dry seeding” last week, in anticipation. One can only hope that “follow up” rains happen in the months to come, and not – yet again – disappear and deliver that cruel blow to dry-land grain farmers of watching the half-grown harvest wither and die into the shrivelled husks of despair.

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Posted by on April 30, 2008 in Australia, blogging, Chinese and China, current affairs, human rights, Jim Belshaw, Kevin Rudd, other blogs, Political, politics, TV



Sorry about that, Chief…

Oops, as they might say:

THE Pentagon’s former chief prosecutor has admitted he never wanted to pursue charges against the Australian terrorism suspect David Hicks.

Mr Hicks’s family and lawyer claimed vindication yesterday after the US Air Force Colonel, Moe Davis – appearing as a witness at a pre-trial hearing for another Guantanamo Bay inmate – said the Australian was not worth charging because he was not considered as serious an offender as other inmates.

But Colonel Davis said he had “inherited” the Hicks case from another prosecutor and was under political pressure to press charges. He had wanted to pursue cases that warranted 20-year sentences, which did not include Mr Hicks. He said the plea bargain to which Mr Hicks agreed to get out of Guantanamo Bay had been organised without his knowledge.

Colonel Davis was once a strident defender of the military commission process and a harsh critic of Mr Hicks and his military lawyer, Major Michael Mori. He resigned as chief prosecutor late last year, saying he had been forced to make inappropriate decisions. At Monday’s pre-trial hearing, Colonel Davis criticised the military commissions as being tainted by politics and using evidence gained by coercion.

Mr Hicks’s Adelaide lawyer, David McLeod, said “the worm has turned”.

“Perhaps the Australian public can now reflect on why it was that David Hicks pleaded guilty when the choice was return to Australia or be a subject to an indefinite political process of detention at Guantanamo,” he said. “It is total vindication of what the other [US] senior prosecutors said in emails in 2005 that the process was rigged, politically rigged.”…

Sydney Morning Herald

I think I’ll leave that right there, but future historians will have fun with the whole saga, won’t they?

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