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The Age from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia • Page 4

The Agei
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Issue Date:
Extracted Article Text (OCR)

4 NEWS THE SUNDAY AGE 13 JULY 1997- Shadowy revolutionaries behind the Hanson violence By Mark Forbes WE PROTEST TIm group attacking Paufln Hwsm Leaden David Glanz Membership: 400 Leaden Stephen Jolly 0 Memoersnip: eo DSFReatitanca Leaden Maurice Sibelle Membership: 900 SocWtet Alternative Leaden Fleur Taylor Membership: 100 (Membership figures based on (roups' om estimates) The Melbourne head of Resistance, Ms Alison Dellit, also expressed an ambivalent attitude to violent demonstrations. She said she did not want to make a judgment on Monday's violence: "I don't support individual attacks on right-wingers, it's a counter-productive tactic." The Trades Hall Council secretary, Mr Leigh Hubbard, said his organisation was not involved in CAR, and the group sounded like a DSP front, created and controlled by the DSP." Mr Ian Rintoul, a spokesman for the International Socialists one of the other militant groups campaigning against One Nation said that the CAR in Melbourne was simply the DSP, calling itself the Campaign Against Racism. Mr Rintoul said the International Socialists had been instrumental in setting up CAR branches in other states. The aim of the Hanson protests were to stop the meetings, he said. "We want to build the biggest possible socialist organisation out of the anti-racist anger," Mr Rin- toul said.

A spokesman for Militant one of the other groups protesting on Monday Mr Stephen Jolly, said his group was fighting for social change and the nationalisation of Australia's top 200 companies. Pauline Hanson must be combated, he said. It is believed that the Protective Security Intelligence Group has been keeping an eye on these groups, videotaping some of Monday's demonstration. paign, Austudy demonstrations, anti-Nazi protests and the occupation of Richmond Secondary College. Earlier last week the chairman of CAR, Mr Maurice Sibelle, declined to criticise Monday's bashing.

"We don't want to be drawn into attacking other protesters," he said. "We don't want to be drawn into policing our members." He said CAR was a broad-based group, and its next rally would be well organised and non-violent. Mr Sibelle described CAR as totally independent, and himself as an independent activist. He refused to say what political party he belonged to, and denied CAR was initiated or controlled by the DSP. Investigations have revealed that Mr Sibelle is the main Melbourne organiser for the DSP.

Just after 'The Sunday Age' told the DSP office of this, Mr Sibelle rang. He eventually confirmed his membership of the DSP. Mr' Sibelle initially maintained that the DSP was not behind forming the Campaign Against Racism. He said the move was an "initiative" of the 'Green Left Weekly' newspaper. The 'Green Left Weekly' is run by the DSP.

Mr Sibelle later conceded the DSP was the "backbone" of the weekly. The contact number for the CAR is the same as the DSP's, and one of the other CAR organisers, Mr Deakin Hully, has been working out of the DSP-Resistance office in the city for three weeks. "It's quite handy," Mr Hully said. THE group behind Monday's violent demonstration against Pauline Hanson in Dandenong the supposedly moderate Campaign Against Racism has close links to an extreme-left group planning revolution. An investigation by 'The Sunday Age' has revealed several fringe-left groups trying to hijack the opposition to Pauline Hanson.

Most are not condemning physical intimidation of One Nation supporters. The militant groups are planning further protests at One Nation meetings at YVerribee tomorrow and Geelong on Friday. Monday's protest at Dandenong backfired after eggs and missiles were thrown at One Nation supporters and a 59-year-old man was According to One Nation, the publicity has generated a record number of membership applications. "It's the busiest since we started, just hectic," said One Nation's Victorian organiser, Mr Andrew Carne. "The more that people get stuck into us, the more people support us, that's the bottom line." Despite claims that the Campaign Against Kacism is a broad umbrella group, it is controlled by the Democratic Socialist Party and its youth wing, Resistance.

The Campaign Against Kacism is run out of the Resistance-Democratic Socialist Party headquarters, and most of its leaders are members of DSP and Resistance. On its web site, the DSP invites people to become part of a movement 'Tighting to pull down the 'rotten structure" of capitalism. "We aim to lead in every struggle against capitalist oppression and destruction, and to unite these stuggles against the system," the DSP manifesto states. The other key fringe groups pushing the campaign against One Nation are the International Socialists, Militant and Socialist Alternative. All advocate revolution and the overthrow of capitalism, and state they aim to close down One Nation meetings.

Police have warned that minority groups involved in Hanson protests are trying to use any opportunity to create havoc. The groups have also been involved in violent protests against the former US president Mr George Bush, the Save Albert Park cam Mm Riotous assembly: Monday's scenes in Dandenong. Police have warned of political fringe groups stirring unrest. Power struggle as dispute bites By Karen Lyon, city reporter after maintenance workers were stood down by the company in a disagreement over working conditions and the use of outside contractors. The state secretary of the Electrical Trades Union, Mr Dean Mighell, warned that more blackouts were likely as the dispute dragged on.

He said during the past four years Citipower had cut maintenance staff from 550 to 140 and workers were "flat out repairing The Melbourne City Council, which once controlled most of Citipower's infrastructure and is one of the company's biggest clients, is believed to be concerned about future power supplies. One councillor has called on the council to consider looking elsewhere. "In looking forward, the council will have to look at its options," Cr I.orna Hannan said. "We can't be satisfied with something that isn't being maintained." The Melbourne City Council received around $200 mil-linn for its share of the power utility when it was sold to the American company Entergy. Citipower was created in 1994 when the Melbourne City Council's electricity SUp-.

ply was amalgamated with that of the former cities of Northcote, Brunswick and Port Melbourne to form one of Victoria's new electricity companies. Its location provided Citi -power with an original client list that included the central, business district. Citipower conceded that the company had lost several "inherited" customers butt Mr Gilmour said, it had won some the largest contracts in Melbourne, including Crown casino, the Cricket Ground, the Transport Corporation and the Arts Centre. He said most of trie "contestable" businesses had been in Citipower's area company had the most to lose when competition was introduced. Mr Gilmour said Citipower had been able to pick up business in other areas and interstate and was producing about the same amount! of power that it had before com- petition.

The other power companies had cut their margins to the minimum to win former Citipower clients, he MORE than 20,000 homes and businesses across inner Melbourne have suffered power cuts in the past month as Citipower struggles to keep the power on during a long industrial dispute. Citipower has also lost some big-name clients to the other four power companies since the State Government deregulated the industry two years ago. Government departments, including the Department of Treasury and Finance, big banks among them the ANZ and the Commonwealth and the retail giant Coles Myer are some of the former Citipower customers who now buy their electricity elsewhere. Citipower has confirmed that more than 20,000 customers were. affected by the recent blackouts.

A spokesman for Citi- Eower, Mr Ross Gilmour, lamed the problems on the industrial action. The dispute, which is entering its 10th week, began Young AFL star charged By Steve Butcher of behaving in an offensive manner in a public place. The charge relates to an alleged incident at the casino on 8 April, after which Crawford was banned from the venue for 12 months. It was reported at the time that Crawford had allegedly urinated under a blackjack table. Crawford, the younger' brother of the Hawks' brilliant midfielder, Shane, had been suspended for two matches by the AFL tribunal several days before thecal-, leged incident.

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