27 February 2013


The numbers indicate that Aboriginal deaths in custody have increased dramatically since the Royal Commission into Deaths in Custody handed down its findings over 20 years ago.

Apartheid South Africa's most famous death in custody was probably that of Steve Biko, highlighted by a book by Donald Woods and made into a film many years ago.

Apartheid Israel's deaths in custody continue apace, what with the mysterious death in a high security suicide-proof prison of Ben Zygier in 2010 - and he was Jewish.

But the very recent death of a Palestinian which the Israeli authorities said was from heart problems turns out to be murder and torture to rival some of Obama's recent efforts around the world and apartheid South Africa at its worst, with Australia doing quite well in the murder stakes in its prisons.

Autopsy reveals Arafat Jaradat died of extreme torture in Israeli custody

Feb 24, 2013 03 | Annie Robbins (in Mondoweiss)
Father of Arafat Jaradat, after identifying his son's tortured body, Abu Kabir Forensic Institute, Feb. 24,2013 (Photo: Yotam Ronen/Activestills.org)

Ma'an News reports Arafat Jaradat died of extreme torture.

Minister: Autopsy shows torture killed Jaradat:

BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- An autopsy has revealed that Arafat Jaradat died of extreme torture in Israeli custody and did not have a cardiac arrest, the PA Minister of Detainee Affairs said Sunday.

At a news conference in Ramallah, Issa Qaraqe said an autopsy conducted in Israel in the presence of Palestinian officials revealed that 30-year-old Jaradat had six broken bones in his neck, spine, arms and legs.

"The information we have received so far is shocking and painful. The evidence corroborates our suspicion that Mr. Jaradat died as a result of torture, especially since the autopsy clearly proved that the victim's heart was healthy, which disproves the initial alleged account presented by occupation authorities that he died of a heart attack," Qaraqe said......

The minister said Jaradat had sustained injuries and severe bruising in the upper right back area and severe bruises of sharp circular shape in the right chest area..... evidence of severe torture and on the muscle of the upper left shoulder, parallel to the spine in the lower neck area, and evidence of severe torture under the skin and inside the muscle of the right side of the chest. His second and third ribs in the right side of the chest were broken, Qaraqe said, and he also had injuries in the middle of the muscle in the right hand...Palestinian Prisoners Society president Qaddura Fares added that the autopsy revealed seven injuries to the inside of Jaradat's lower lip, bruises on his face and blood on his nose...... no signs of bruising or stroke, the minister added.


"Jaradat died due to torture and not a stroke or heart attack," he said, adding that those responsible must be sued either through Interpol or the International Criminal Court.

Jaradat's lawyer Kameel Sabbagh said he was tortured by Israeli interrogators. ......"When I entered the courtroom I saw Jaradat sitting on a wooden chair in front of the judge. His back was hunched and he looked sick and fragile," Sabbagh said in a statement Sunday.

"When I sat next to him he told me that he had serious pains in his back and other parts of his body because he was being beaten up and hanged for many long hours while he was being investigated..When Jaradat heard that the judge postponed his hearing he seemed extremely afraid....."

25 February 2013


There is so much horror in the United States of America, and so many lies spread by its government to conceal their human rights abuses, torture of its own citizens, and endless abuses of privilege - just think of how the United Nations is controlled by the US Government - that it is difficult to know where to start to catalogue or list the dictatorial behaviour of recent administrations dating way back when.

Lies to its citizens aided and abetted by the media - think Rupert Murdoch - concealment, promises, such as to close Guantanamo Bay when there never was such an intention! - we are fortunate to have brave people in the world such as Bradley Manning and Julian Assange and Emad Bernat and all the others who put their lives at risk on a daily basis to expose what governments do their best to conceal from the citizens of the world.

Thanks to the internet and these brave people all the secrets will out. Let us hope that people around the world will see how they are being sacrificed for the few who control and pull the strings. Their days will end and the sooner the better.

Thank goodness for organisations such as NationofChange and AlterNet and Mondoweiss and many others for keeping us as informed as possible!

One Thousand Days When One is Too Many

NationofChange 230213

Think of that, count it off . . . 1,000 days; that is how long Bradley Manning has been incarcerated without a trial.

Even though he has been incarcerated for nearly three years most Americans have no idea what he did, why he did it or how he has been mistreated coming from the commander-in-chief to the courtroom at Fort Meade.The mass media has made sure to keep Americans ignorant about what is going on and why it is important. But many do see through the misinformation and are standing with Brad. We take action because like Brad, we want the truth to be told, the truth to be known and understood so we can improve the country.

In more than 55 cities this weekend and around the world, people will rally, hold forums, protest – take whatever action they can to lift the veil and expose the truth. Join them or create your own.What are some of the truths? There are so many. In this short newsletter, we want to focus on one – Hillary Clinton. She is the most popular woman in the world, according to polls. If she wants the presidency, the media tells us, it is hers. Yet, what do the Wikileaks documents which whistleblower Bradley Manning released show us? They show us she is not fit to be president and rather than being admired, she should be prosecuted. That will sound extreme to the ears of Americans who have had the truth hidden from them, but it is a factual statement.

The U.S. houses the United Nations. This gives the U.S. great opportunity to spy on UN diplomats when they come to New York for meetings. It is against the law to spy on diplomats when they come to such meetings.

But, the Wikileaks documents show that in 2009 Hillary Clinton ordered that foreign diplomats be spied on. She even ordered US diplomats to obtain DNA data, biometric data, iris scans and fingerprints as well as credit card and frequent flier numbers and so much more. Her orders, sent to 30 embassies, were fulfilling the request of the CIA for all sorts of information. The General Secretary, Ban Kai Moon (who was also spied on) called Clinton in for a meeting about this violation of law.

Did this get any media attention in the US? Were there calls for an investigation or a special prosecutor? No. Inside the US Empire there was silence from the mass media and political elite.When the Arab Spring in Egypt was on the verge of success, what role did Clinton play? She urged support for Omar Suleiman.

Then Manning’s Wikileaks documents exposed who Suleiman was. Suleiman was the man who did the dirty work for the authoritarian dictator of Egypt, Hosni Mubarak. Not only did he do Mubarak's dirty work, but he was the go-to guy for Israel in dealing with Egypt, making all sorts of deals that allowed the abuse of Palestinians. He was the one who did the dirty work for the US Empire. He was the CIA liaison for the source of the misinformation campaign on WMDs in Iraq and people targeted by the US were renditioned to the torturous abuse of Omar Suleiman.

But Clinton, who certainly knew all this, called on Suleiman to investigate Egypt’s violence and thought he’d be the perfect replacement for Mubarak. When this all came out in Egypt, not much was said about it in the US but Clinton’s pick, Suleiman, was no longer a viable candidate.

Clinton announced last week that she will be doing public speaking after she rests from her arduous job as Secretary of State. No doubt she will reap the pay-off for her years of hard work for the transnational corporations for whom US foreign policy is designed. The Wikileaks documents again show the truth of that fact. Of course, the American people are told we go to war for democracy, protection of human rights and the rights of woman in Afghanistan.

Sadly, the mass media says these things over and over so Americans learn to believe them, even though the Wikileaks documents show US foreign policy is of, by and for big corporations.

Anyone who has followed the Manning case has seen his mistreatment by the government from his initial incarceration to his abusive prosecution. Under military law, Manning was supposed to be arraigned within 120 days of his arrest but it took well over 600 days to do so.During that 600 days Manning was driven to near suicide. First he was kept in abusive conditions in Kuwait: kept awake at night and only sleeping during the day, his cell searched regularly, torn apart by guards and he was kept away from other prisoners. Manning thought he was going to die in an 8 by 8 animal cage in Kuwait.

He rejoiced when he was being put on a plane, not knowing where he was going, but knowing it was better than where he was. When he landed at BWI airport, he was so happy to be in the United States – to be home. But, he soon learned things would not get better as he was held in solitary confinement for nine more months at the abusive Quantico Marine Base, where every five minutes he was required to respond to the question, "Are you alright?", and throughout the day not allowed to lie down or sit leaning against the wall in his cell. These are only two examples of many abuses he suffered.

No one else will ever suffer at the Quantico brig because it is now being closed, no doubt in part due to the notoriety Manning supporters heaped on the base with repeated protests until Manning was released and finally treated appropriately.

That’s right, activists made a difference. It was after our final protest where dozens were arrested and paramilitary units, helicopters and horses were turned against us that he was put in appropriate pre-trial confinement. Occupy, veterans and other activists have consistently supported Manning. We are in solidarity because we all want transparent and peaceful government.

That is why what we do this weekend makes a difference. 1,000 days. It needs to be memorialized, forced into the consciousness of Americans misled by mass media propaganda that prefers to focus on Manning's sexuality rather than the facts contained in the documents he released.

Really, that is the essence of it. Manning took on the heart of American corporatocracy – the Empire. The media cannot even let us know how big the national security state really is, always understating the real annual cost of our $1.3 trillion security state; never acknowledging that the US has more than 1200 bases and outposts around the world. In fact, no one in the media or political class ever even acknowledges that the US is an Empire. It is almost amusing because it is so absurd.

We live in the largest Empire in world history but the media, political class and the plutocrats behind them never acknowledge the US is an Empire.That is why Manning has been mistreated from the initial release of the “Collateral Murder Video” showing the U.S. military killing journalists and others in Iraq, Manning became a target of the Empire. He has lifted the veil so the truth can be seen.

And, no doubt it will. As the U.S. Empire fades, as all empires do, people will examine the Wikileaks documents and be amazed at what they contain—a daily history of the Empire’s military and diplomatic corps. That treasure trove will show a very corrupt, abusive and violent empire. Manning will be on the right side of history and so will those of you who stand with Brad.

Let’s make his 1,000 days in prison something all Americans are aware of by joining on of the events this weekend and if there is no event in your area, create one. Go to your local paper and ask them to report on Manning, the Wikileaks documents and to start a discussion about US Empire.

Manning said in chat logs that he hoped to start a debate in the US so we could improve the country. Let’s use this weekend to help make that a reality.

Kevin Zeese JD and Margaret Flowers MD co-host Clearing the FOG on We Act Radio 1480 AM Washington, DC and on Economic Democracy Media, co-direct It's Our Economy and are organizers of the Occupation of Washington, DC. Their twitters are @KBZeese and @MFlowers8. Zeese is a member of the Steering Committee of the Bradley Manning Support Network.

This article is based on a weekly newsletter by Occupy Washington, DC. You can sign up to receive it free here.


Australian censorship has no rhyme or reason. I have just finished reading Jeff Sparrow's highly entertaining and insightful book "MONEY SHOT". This book tries to explain the workings of our censorship mechanisms and how absurd some of their decisions are.

I am now in the middle of reading Nicole Moore's "THE CENSOR'S LIBRARY" and one can't help but wonder whether Australia has really entered the 21st century.

The internet, the world-wide-web or www allows so much to be found that to try and police it would be an impossible project, but Australia is doing its best!

Australian censors ban gay movie a year after allowing bestiality film

Real depictions of gay sex are apparently more shocking than real man-on-donkey action as Australian censors ban a gay movie that was due to screen at LGBT film festivals across the country this year

23 February 2013 | By Andrew Potts gay star news

Australian film censors have banned a movie that contains real sex between two male actors less than a year after they allowed a documentary that contained actual depictions of bestiality to screen at festivals.

I Want Your Love, by American filmmaker Travis Mathews had been scheduled to screen at LGBT film festivals around Australia this year but the Australian Classification Board decided to ban it instead.

The decision comes less than six months after the Classification Board decided to allow the film Donkey Love, a documentary about a Colombian folk tradition where men have sex with donkeys to prepare them for having sex with women.

Donkey Love contained actual on screen sex between men and animals but was given permission to screen at the Sydney Underground Film Festival and Melbourne Underground Festival by the Classification Board.

I Want Your Love tells the story of a 20-something gay artist who negotiates to have sex with his best friend before leaving Los Angeles to move back to his hometown in Ohio. In 2010 the Classification Board banned the Bruce La Bruce gay zombie movie LA Zombie which contained scenes of simulated cannibalism during real sex, however the depictions of real sex in I Want Your Love are non-violent.

The Melbourne Underground Film Festival defied the ban and screened LA Zombie anyway and was issued a $750 fine after being raided by police.

Prior to that in 2003 the Classification Board banned the Larry Clark film Ken Park which contained a real threesome between two male and one female adult actors who’s characters were supposed to be teenagers.

The ban on LA Zombie led to a number of official complaints and accusations of anti-gay bias. Another Travis Mathews film, the short documentary In Their Room Berlin, was also refused permission to screen at last year’s Mardi Gras Film Festival.

Australian censors have approved feature films containing real heterosexual sex for an R rating in the past – meaning that they can be rented from video stores – while films deemed simply pornographic are illegal to sell but legal to own in most Australian states.

23 February 2013


The Bradley Manning support group:


called for an international day of action on 23 February 2013 because on that day Bradley Manning had been illegally incarcerated by his own government without trial and under circumstances which can only be described as torture - for 1000 days.

The Melbourne rally took place on 22 February 2013 starting at the Melbourne landmark Flinders Street Station at 4pm.

The rally lasted about 2 hours - the scheduled time span - and from the station the rally moved to Federation Square, then to Bourke Street and Bourke Street Mall.

Melbourne has a population of about 4 million people, of which a few hundred call themselves socialists.

The demonstration consisted of about 20 people, 2 of which were us 2 geriatrics aged 90 and 86 respectively.

There was no indication of the presence or support of any of the socialist groups active in Melbourne.

One has to wonder at their activist claims and their support for people in the same position as Bradley Manning - people like David Hicks, Mamdouh Habib, Dr Haneef, Ben Zygier, Julian Assange and many others come to mind.

If these socialist groups don't believe it could happen to them in Australia, they need to look at Australia's current and past history of dealing with people that governments deem to be "undesirables".

If there are any social consciences and feelings of human rights abuses in the communities, now is the time to show them

15 February 2013


Anonymous letter-writers are so afraid of people finding out their true identities that they haven't got the courage to front up and sign their names to the disgusting letters they write. This one arrived at my house on 15 February 2013 and as can be seen from the layout the person writing the letter has done the best they possibly could to hide where the letter came from as well as their name(s).

One has to wonder at their motivation - is it to intimidate, to vilify, to show their ignorance?

What it shows is their absolute cowardice!


Israel is the 'Canary in the Coal mine' as far as the Islamic World is concerned NOT the problem.

YOU have a history of being a traitor:

To your wife and to your children

You evidently prefer a cat to your children, because you -re inadequate as a human and as a father.

YOU or anyone who backs the Islamist cause is a traitor to western society, to women and to children born in the west.

But being a traitor to women apparently comes easy to you. You are a hedonist without shame or guilt.

Being a traitor to children apparently is something about which you don't care and don't give a thought. Again, it comes easy to you.

You try to demonstrate worldly interest in and grasp of politics. But your perceptions are childish, uneducated, and ill-informed.

You are not only a traitor to women and children, you are a traitor to your heritage, and to Jews everywhere, even secular Jews, and to gay, lesbian, transvestite and transgender persons in Islamic countries throughout the world.

You are an immoral and despicable creature who like many others of your kind, have an internet voice. Fortunately, due to your age'; you may not have very long to go before the only legacy you have left is a trail of familial neglect and incomprehensible stupidity.

The postmark on the envelope shows it comes from NORTHGATE MAIL CENTRE QLD 4013


08 February 2013


This item arrived from Mondoweiss on 6 February 2013:

Bloomberg backs Brooklyn College over BDS event as another official withdraws funding threat

Feb 06, 2013 02:25 pm | Alex Kane

Supporters of Brooklyn College's Students for Justice in Palestine held a press conference yesterday to speak out against the attacks on the group's panel (Photo via @ReclaimLanguage)

The tide has suddenly turned hard against opponents of the Students for Justice in Palestine-organized event that is set for tomorrow night at Brooklyn College. Mayor Michael Bloomberg strongly denounced attempts by legislators to threaten the college with funding cuts over the event and also came out in support of the Political Science Department's right to sponsor the event--a position that puts him to the left of the initial position that some members of the City Council's Progressive Caucus took.

Additionally, that group of progressive politicians, organized by Rep. Jerry Nadler, backed off from their pressure on the Brooklyn College Political Science Department, while another progressive who had signed on to a separate funding threat letter authored by Councilman Lew Fidler withdrew his name.

Bloomberg made the remarks defending Brooklyn College earlier today. "If you want to go to a university where the government decides what kind of subjects are fit for discussion, I suggest you apply to a school in North Korea," he bluntly said, according to a report by Dana Rubinstein in Capital New York.

Bloomberg, an ardent Zionist who flew into Israel as the country waged a punishing assault on the Gaza Strip, emphasized that he "violently" opposed the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement targeting Israeli human rights violations. But he also said that he "could not agree more strongly with an academic department's right to sponsor a forum on any topic that they choose."

Bloomberg continued by saying:

"The last thing we need is for members of our City Council or state legislature to be micromanaging the kinds of programs that our public universities run and base funding decisions on the political views of professors. I can't think of anything that would be more destructive to a university and its students. The freedom to discuss ideas, including ideas that people find repugnant, lies really at the heart of the university system. And take that away, and higher education in this country would certainly die."

The New York City mayor also jabbed political opponents of the BDS movement for bringing more attention to the event that it would have gotten without the controversy. "If they just shut up, it would have gone away," he said.

Even more striking is the new letter issued by the very same group of progressive politicians who initially demanded that the Political Science Department rescind its co-sponsorship of the event.

The first letter from this group, which included signers who were members of the Progressive Caucus in the New York City Council, demanded that "Brooklyn College’s Political Science Department...withdraw their endorsement of this event." (In fact, the department did not "endorse" the event--they explicitly and repeatedly said they agreed to co-sponsor, and not endorse.) But their new letter, posted by Brooklyn College Political Science Professor Corey Robin, backs off. The demand directed at the department now seems to be gone. Instead, they write:

The Political Science Department has put in writing its policy for considering co-sponsorship of student-organized events, making clear that requests from “any groups, departments or programs organizing lectures or events representing any point of view … will be given equal consideration.” However, as has been clear in this instance, the departmental practice of co-sponsorship of specifically student-organized events has caused real confusion among students regarding intent and endorsement of views (as evidenced by Student Body (CLAS) President Abraham Esses’ “Open Letter” in this regard).

We, therefore, believe that the policy would be strengthened greatly by the explicit inclusion of language that you and the Department have used on this case – that sponsorship does not imply endorsement.

It's not a direct repudiation of their earlier letter--you have read between the lines. But these progressives are quietly backing off from their pressure on the Department's co-sponsorship of the event. (Still, the progressive letter continues to distort the BDS movement by claiming that "advocates of the BDS movement have called for a boycott of Israeli scholars." In fact, the academic aspect of BDS calls for a boycott of Israeli academic institutions--and not individuals just because they are Israeli.)

Relatedly, a Councilman who was among the signers of the Nadler letter, Stephen Levin, has withdrawn his name from a separate letter written by City Council Assistant Majority Leader Lew Fidler that threatened the college's funding over the event. Levin's withdrawal makes him the second legislator to back off from the funding threat, after Councilwoman Letitia James, another progressive official, withdrew her name as well. That leaves eight Council members who have left their names on the Fidler letter.

I have withdrawn my name frm City Council ltr on funding 4 BK College. I maintain my criticism of BDS & impression of BK College endorsement — Stephen Levin (@StephenLevin33) February 5, 2013

All of this comes a day after Students for Justice in Palestine organized a press conference to speak out against the "escalating attacks" on their event. Donna Nevel of Jewish Voice for Peace and Jews Say No! was there to show her support, and said:

I am pleased to be here today to have the opportunity to speak out in support of Students for Justice in Palestine and all those at Brooklyn College and across the city concerned with ensuring that bullying and intimidation do not succeed in denying students and others the right to engage in critical examination and inquiry of important political ideas. What we have seen happening here is yet another example of an attempt to suppress and vilify voices critical of Israel and Israeli government policies, a pattern that has become far too common in this city and nation-wide.

It’s bad enough that Alan Dershowitz and Dov Hikind have engaged in a smear campaign. We’ve come to expect that. But city council members who threaten to take away city funding merely because they disagree with the views expressed on a college campus should be ashamed of themselves and should be held accountable for trying to interfere in this way. And they must not prevail.

Nevel also strongly defended the BDS movement:

About the topic that has become so controversial and caused so much condemnation--it needs to be made clear that Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) is a non-violent response to the Israeli government’s violation of basic principles of human rights and international law. It is, in my view, those violations that should be condemned, not strategies such as BDS that are designed to put an end to those violations, and the injustices that they inflict on the Palestinian people.

The entire controversy continues to garner media coverage. The chair of the Political Science Department, Paisley Currah, has authored a piece in the Chronicle of Higher Education defending the event and calling out the hypocrisy of the panel discussion's opponents.

And this morning, Democracy Now! had on Omar Barghouti, the Palestinian BDS activist who is one of the speakers at tomorrow's event, and Glenn Greenwald. Watch it here:

Bargouti and Greenwald interviewed by Democracy Now!

Update: This post has been altered slightly to clarify the difference between the Lew Fidler letter and the letter organized by Rep. Jerrold Nadler.

07 February 2013


The current media politics in Australia have become mono-voiced and the mono-voice has taken its cue from the main monopolistic media broker in the country.

Have you noticed that with the one voice they are crying "GET GILLARD BY FAIR MEANS OR FOUL!"

I am not a Gillard fan - she and her ALP government have let down the Australian population and those who would hope to become part of that population, and they have failed us on many issues.

However, with one voice the media are trying to destroy a legally elected government and to prove that the natural government of the country is in the hands of the most conservative voices ever to shout from the rooftops ""WE SHALL GOVERN AND WE ALONE SHALL DECIDE WHO GOVERNS THE COUNTRY"!

The main voice has been the Murdoch-controlled media which is roughly 70 per cent of all media in Australia. But the other 30 per cent is more or less Fairfax media and the ABC which has thrown in its lot with the Murdoch gang to the extent that there is no possibility of ever obtaining fair and reasoned argument on that once august organisation.

From Keating onwards, all governments hve undermined and underfunded the ABC and of course the coup de grace was when Howard appointed Mark Scott as Managing Director of the organisation after he had already subverted journalism at Fairfax.

Journalists who might actually voice dissent and reason with sound arguments are on notice not to rock the media boats which give them their livelihoods - which are shrinking anyway, because alternative media are able to tell the truths which the main stream media (MSM) won't do - they are all supporting reactionary, right-wing, homophobic bigotry and worse.

Is this a media dictatorship taking over?

It certainly seems so!

Here is an interesting letter from The Age 0n 6 February 2013:

Media must pin down politicians

IT IS time the media accepted some responsibility for the contempt in which politicians seem to hold their constituents. Fatuous sound bites from doorstep interviews have become the basis for opinion pieces. When did fact checking and research go out of the journalistic kitbag?

The public has learnt to expect that politicians have difficulty with the truth, but it seems the media, caught up in the frenzy of being first with the news, are also losing credibility. Pinning politicians down to answer questions, and presenting in-depth analysis once were the basics of political journalists.

Policies and costings for every political party's platform should be demanded by the press and then properly scrutinised and reported by journalists. If journalists went back to basics, the freedom of the press would mean something. It would mean electors would be free to choose the government they want, knowing exactly what it is intending to do.

Greg Tuck, Warragul


Has justice been served? Probably not, but it may be some small solace to some of the hundreds whose lives were ruined in Apartheid South Africa and later in Canada.

The following items were from Gay Star News in the United Kingdom:

‘Gay cure’ therapist given five years in jail for molesting male patients

Dr Aubrey Levin, known as Dr Shock in his native South Africa, was convicted of sexually assaulting three patients in Canada

05 February 2013 | By Joe Morgan

A Canadian ‘gay cure’ therapist convicted of molesting male patients has been sentenced to five years in jail.

Dr Aubrey Levin, 74, was going to be given eight years, but the judge reduced it due to his health problems and age.

Levin was convicted on three counts of sexual assault by a jury last week.

Court of Queen’s Bench Justice Donna Shelley told the disgraced doctor that it was a ‘horrible violation of the trust of these three patients’.

‘They came to you for help for their problems,’ she said. ‘Instead you added to their problems.’

While the Crown asked for six to eight years, the defence argued Levin was a frail senior and suggested a sentence of 60-90 days to be served on weekends.

Shelley said: ‘Dr Levin, knowing of the many vulnerabilities of these victims, employed a strategy which would give him the opportunity to sexually assault his patients.’

‘Dr Levin’s profession and his training would make him more informed than the average sexual assaulter to the serious psychological and emotional harm that can result from a sexual assault,’ she added.

‘These three men were already emotionally and psychologically fragile.’

Levin initially faced charges involving nine different men, but was acquitted on two others and the jury could not reach a verdict on the last four.

Prosecutor Dallas Sopko said the Crown was satisfied with the outcome.

‘We feel it’s a fair and just sentence given all the circumstances in the case. It’s been a long and arduous process,’ he said.

Chief Defence Counsel Chris Archer said he hopes he will be able to get his client released on bail once an appeal had been filed.

‘With a 74-year-old man you're looking at the end of your life and whether or not this is going to be a significant part of it or whether or not you're going to die in jail," Archer said.

The allegations against Levin came to light in 2010 after one of his patients came forward with secret videos he had recorded during court-ordered sessions with the psychiatrist.

The videos, played in court last fall, show Levin undoing the man's belt and jeans and appearing to fondle him.

A South African immigrant to Canada, Levin was known in his country of origin as ‘Dr Shock’. It is alleged he subjected hundreds of gay soldiers and conscientious objectors to electric shock ‘therapy’ during the apartheid era.

Speaking to GSN, a South African journalist also claimed Levin and his team performed chemical castration and forced gender reassignment surgery on gay men as a ‘cure’ for being homosexual.

Levin has denied abusing any patients under his care and has argued the submission was based on a distortion of facts.

The following item is a report from 2012 and was before the above judgement:

Canada gay 'cure' doctor arrested for sexually assaulting men

A Canadian psychiatrist is to stand on trial for sexually abusing gay patients, he also used discredited aversion therapy on hundreds of South African lesbians and gays army conscripts to 'cure' them of their sexuality

10 October 2012 | By Dan Littauer

Canadian psychiatrist, Aubrey Levin is to stand on trial next Wednesday, in Calgary, Canada for sexually assaulting 10 male patients.


The prosecution represents gay patients, who were mostly prisoners that were assigned by the Canadian justice system for treatment.

Aubrey Levin, infamously known as 'Dr Shock', has subjected hundreds of gay and lesbian soldiers and conscientious objectors in apartheid era South Africa to electric shocks ‘therapy’ in an attempt to 'cure' them of their sexuality and 'deviant ideas.

The Guardian, a British daily, reported that on Tuesday (9 October), a jury ruled that 73 year-old Levin was fit to stand trial after the defence claimed he was suffering from the early stages of dementia.

In March 2010 the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta suspended Levin's license over accusations of abuse after a male patient secretly filmed the psychiatrist allegedly making sexual advances.

Levin was consequently arrested; however, earlier complaints by others were ignored by the Canadian authorities.

After his arrest, about 30 other male patients came forward accusing Levin of sexual abuse. Levin's arrest raised questions in Canada as to how he was allowed to become a citizen and permitted to practice at the University of Calgary's Medical School even after he was named by South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) for 'gross human rights abuses' during the apartheid era.

Levin, infamously known in South Africa as ‘Dr Shock’, has subjected hundreds gay soldiers and conscientious objectors in apartheid era to electric shocks ‘therapy’.

Levin was first licensed as a psychiatrist in South Africa in 1969. He was a Colonel in the South African Defence Force (SADF), as well as the chief psychiatrist at the Voortrekkerhoogte military hospital during the 1970s.

During his work in the SADF he was the attending psychiatrist at Greefswald, an isolated detention barracks where harsh treatments, including powerful drugs electric shocks, were used to 'cure' conscripts of supposed 'homosexual vices' and conscientious objections.

[UPDATE] A journalist from South Africa has claimed to GSN that in addition to the above, 'Levin and his team also performed chemical castration as well as forced or rather coerced (as they were not literally forced) gender reassignment surgery on gay men as a "cure" for being gay.

'One such patient is currently living in New York reticent to speak to the press as he (although physically now a she) has been living a life of horror as he never wanted to be a woman as he was never transgender but just an effeminate gay man.'

Levin also used the same ‘treatments’ to suppress dissent in the black townships detaining hundreds of people and classifying them as ‘disturbed’.

Levin then rose to notoriety for his work on the totally discredited aversion therapy medical program which attempted to ‘cure’ gays and lesbians of homosexuality and in reality leaving many crippled and damaged for life.

Levin encouraged SADF officers and chaplains to refer ‘deviants’ for electroconvulsive aversion therapy, in which gay soldiers being shown pictures of naked men and encouraged to fantasise as they were subject to increasingly powerful electric shocks until they begged for the pain to stop.

Some of the abuses were documented by the Aversion Project in South Africa.

Levin also targeted drug users, principally soldiers who smoked marijuana, and conscientious objectors who would not serve in the apartheid military on moral grounds. Some were subjected to narco-analysis or a 'truth drug', involving the injection of a barbiturate before the questioning began.

While the details of Levin's human rights abuses were widely reported in South Africa, he managed to suppress publication of details about his past in Canada by threatening legal action against news organisations.

06 February 2013


Mark Scott was appointed to head the ABC by the Howard government. Scott came from Fairfax media and brought his right-wing reactionary views with him to the new job.

As with SBS the ABC has been sliding backwards for the last 10 to 15 years and has now reached almost rock-bottom with its political judgement so extremely on the right that Genghis Khan and others look positively liberal by comparison.

Apart from the dumbing-down politics of this once great organisation, other actions on a day-to-day basis show that the ABC ignores listener complaints learns nothing from past mistakes and continues to perpetuate them.

Take the introduction to the television news at 7pm every night when we have the introduction saying "ABC News - ABC News - ABC News" to ensure that those of us who are moronic enough not to understand what is about to take place that we are about to get to see a news bulletin! Really!

As if that isn't bad enough, some other programme promos tell us this is "ABC1 - ABC1 - ABC1" telling us that we really are too dumb to know if we only hear it once we won't know that the TV station is actually ABC1 - surprise, surprise!

One of the reasons people like me have taken to blogging is because over the years we have written to organisations such as the ABC complaining about things like the above, only to be totally ignored.

One of the other major sins about which people have been complaining for years - at least those whose letters actually get published - is the endless promos for various new programmes - such that by the time we get to see them we often feel that they represent an anti-climax - will they live up to the hype? Sometimes yes, mostly no!

Another major sin - and this too is on the list of complaints - endlessly - is the one about music-over accompanying speech for many programmes. The music drowns out the speech so one doesn't know what has been promoted. Many broadcasters who are well-spoken and articulate are drowned out totally - Marion Arnold is one whose announcements usually suffer, together with most others too.

One of the other major problems, apart from the right-wing bias so obvious in news and current affairs programmes is the creeping in of religious music on Classic FM and support for zionism and totally ignoring of Palestinians.

Unfortunately for many of us there is no alternative, but these days when it all becomes unbearable we turn to CDs and DVDs and thank goodness for them!


Michelle Grattan has worked for Fairfax media for many years and has slowly but inexorably moved from centre (?) to ultra right, becoming more and more extreme in the last 5 years since the Rudd/Gillard governments arrived in Canberra.

She has done her best to destabilise the present government and undermine Gillard at every turn.

She has done nothing to ensure investigation of the Slipper/Ashby/Thomson/Jackson scandals, she has done nothing to investigate the Oppositions's role in destablising the government and indeed she has done her level best to assist them - the Opposition - at every turn.

Grattan is reported as having accepted a post at the Australian National University where she will apparently be involved in media studies.

I pity her students - one-sided narrow prejudiced reporting does not academic freedom make as we are witnessing at the moment in the USA where - as in Australia - any criticism of Israel is taken to be anti-semitic, where the real anti-semites are the Israelis and zionists around the world!

The Gillard government may not be the best government ever seen in this or any other country, but in the country of the fair go - supposedly - every effort is being mounted by the media - Murdoch/Fairfax/ABC - you name it - they are all trying to cause the government to collapse.

We all make mistakes, some worse than others, but human beings are fallible creatures and it does not make them be condemned for all their efforts.

Gillard and Rudd have personally done me a great deal of harm, and their approaches to many aspects of government have been appalling, but do people like Grattan really believe that the Abbott-led team will be so much better than those who are in government at the moment?

If so, they are deluding themselves, and should the unthinkable occur at the election in September 2013 many of these people will be as shocked as the Queenslanders and News South Welshmen have been since electing Newman and O'Farrell.

04 February 2013


The following 28-page document was on the web pages of the organisation


The item was posted by Mondoweiss in December 2012 and the information on its pages should be read around the world.


03 February 2013


I started this petition some time ago when the federal government and its friendly opposition were vying with each other to see who could torture people who had already been traumatised by their persecution due to wars which Australia had been busy fighting in countries with which it had no right to be involved in.

People quickly lost interest in the issue because of other scandals blowing up around that time and subsequently the two concentration camps used by the Howard government were found to be useful for incarcerating those managing to get to Australia alive!

It is time to resurrect the petition and ask you to get your friends to sign it too. Thanks for your assistance in this humanitarian crisis.

care2 petitionsite

Stop Australian Incarceration of Asylum Seekers

Digg StumbleUpon Reddit Print E-Mail signatures: 86 signature goal: 1,000 post to facebook tweet this email your friends get the widget


Target: Australians and International communities
Sponsored by: Mannie De Saxe, Lesbian and Gay Solidarity, Melbourne

Australia is trying to negotiate an off-shore solution to Asylum Seekers coming to Australia in boats which are not seaworthy, and which have already been responsible for many drownings offshore. The latest attempt is the so-called Malaysian solution involving Australia sending 800 asylum seekers to Malaysia in exchange for 2000 refugees in Malaysia. Both the Australian Government and its parliamentary Opposition are demonising people fleeing desperate situations in their countries of origin, mainly because of Australian military intervention in those countries.

The total numbers of asylum seekers trying to enter Australia is a miniscule number in terms of refugees and asylum seekers around the world, and most of the people in Australia illegally have arrived by plane!

Australia is signatory to United Nations conventions on refugees but is ignoring these UN documents in its political attempts to stop the demonised "boat people" ever setting foot in Australia.

Help to obtain justice for Asylum Seekers in desperate situations.

The situation has worsened with the federal government reopening the concentration camps on Nauru and Manus Island.

Get the government to close these camps now.

02 February 2013


Some time ago I started a petition to stop SBS having advert breaks in the middle of its shows.I had been in contact with someone from Save our SBS who was not in Melbourne at the time but promised that the organisation would help with the petition.

Of course the organisation did NOT help with it and it floundered.

I am now hoping to resurrect the petition and request you to get friends to sign it and ultimately to peresnt a petition to SBS with many hundreds of signatures.

Here is the petition and the details of what it asks:

• Care2
• petitionsite

SBS Television and advertisements


• signatures: 48
• • signature goal: 1,000
• post to facebook
• tweet this
• email your friends
• get the widget
• Target: SBS Management in Australia
• Sponsored by: Mannie De Saxe

SBS television was started in Australia some 30 years ago to assist the multicultural aspects of modern Australia's changing demographics. SBS was funded by the federal government but successive governments reduced their budget, so SBS began putting commercial advertising at the beginning and end of their programmes in order to raise revenue.

When a new CEO was apponted some 10 years ago, he decided that if the advertisements were played in the middle of programmes, more revenue would be raised for the station. This ploy failed miserably, and as a consequence SBS lost viewers and the quality of its programmes deteriorated rapidly.

Now in 2012, SBS has a new management and this petition is to urge the new team to drop the advertisments in the middle of programmes. SBS used to have the best news bulletins of all tv stations in Australia, and, because of the advertisements, it has lost continuity and quality - and some of its best newsreaders!

We are hoping to get enough signatures on this petition to induce SBS management to reconsider, and restore the service to its former glory!

Late in 2012 SBS started a new channel specifically for Indigenous programmes. These too are interrupted in the middle of interesting programmes by commercials. These need to be stopped now in order to make SBS what it was originally - the world's first - and best - multicultural broadcaster.


The Gillard Government put out a discussion paper for a proposed bill to encompass 5 anti-discrimination acts and consolidate them into one act.

The bill is called the "Human Rights and Anti-Discrimination Bill 2012".

Now let's get this clear - we need to understand the meaning of anti-discrimination.

Basically anti is a preposition and derives from the Greek anti - against. In the English language the meaning in general usage is opposed to.

Discrimination means unfavourable treatment based on prejudice.

The proposed bill allows religious organisations to discriminate against certain members of the population which religions deem to be against their interests in relation to such issues as employment, teaching, administration and several others.

Although these institutions are tax exempt - another anomaly when it comes to anti-discrimination, many are in fact subsidised by the government to carry out their discriminatory activities.

As I mentioned in a previous post, in South Africa as soon as the apartheid government wanted to introduce a new discriminatory piece of legislation, it was couched in terms which seemed to suggest the opposite.

This is, in fact, the intent of the current bill. It is designed to entrench discrimination and is the opposite of anti-discrimination.

It can therefore not be supported in any way as the bill now stands and Gillard has firmly stated that she has no intention of changing the direction of the bill - and as I also said before - this from an atheist unmarried prime minister living with a partner against the teachings of the religious institutions to which she is providing exemptions and for which she continues to provide funding and provide tax exemptions.

Gillard may look more personable now with her glasses than she has ever looked before, but the person behind the glasses is as steely-minded as ever and as Margaret Thatcher so infamously said, "The Lady is Not For Turning".

01 February 2013


This post was received by email and it is of urgency and importance to all of us who believe that our governments have gone too far and need to be constantly reminded that we are watching them! PLEASE SUPPORT THIS PETITION TO LET OBAMA KNOW THAT HIS SECOND TERM NEEDS TO FULFIL THE PROMISES HE MADE WHEN FIRST ELECTED 4 YEARS AGO!

Tell Obama: Pardon CIA whistleblower John Kiriakou


Dear Everybody,

President Obama has opposed waterboarding as torture since the 2008 campaign - so why is he sending the man who helped end that practice to prison?

Former CIA officer John Kiriakou, who helped expose the Bush administration's torture program, recently plead guilty to sharing the name of a colleague to journalists to use as a source. He is expected to receive a sentence of 30 months in prison.(1)

It's a cruel irony that the first agent connected to the CIA torture program to go to prison is the whistleblower who spoke out against the heinous practices of our government.(2)

From Bradley Manning to Aaron Swartz to John Kiriakou, the government's pattern of overzealously prosecuting activists and whistleblowers has ruined too many lives already. If President Obama wants to show he opposes torture and supports government transparency he should pardon Kiriakou immediately.

Tell President Obama to pardon CIA whistleblower John Kiriakou.

Click here to read and sign the petition: http://action.firedoglake.com/page/s/pardon-kiriakou

In fact, the Justice Department has refused to pursue any of the people who sanctioned and carried out the torture Kiriakou helped expose. Yet they have gone after whistleblowers and activists with a zeal unmatched by any administration in history. Bradley Manning faces life in prison. Aaron Swartz took his life to avoid prosecution. Thomas Drake, Shamai Leibowitz, the list goes on and on.

Kiriakou is the sixth person to be indicted under the Espionage Act by the Obama administration.(3)

It's time the president end this war on whistleblowers. He can start by pardoning John Kiriakou.

Sign our petition demanding President Obama pardon CIA whistleblower John Kiriakou.

Kiriakou served his country in the CIA for over 15 years, risking his life as an undercover agent chasing Al-Qaeda overseas — he does not deserve this treatment. Kiriakou says he engaged in rendition that resulted in the torture of detainees. He did not personally carry out torture. His leak was not even made public and presented no harm the country.

Compare this to the reckless and very public outing of Valerie Plame — a case that resulted in four felony convictions for Scooter Libby, but not a single day in jail. It is unconscionable that Libby could avoid punishment, while Kiriakou must face years in prison for exposing the illegal and inhumane actions of the government — actions the Obama administration claims to oppose.

President Obama should not punish, but pardon John Kiriakou for his exceptional patriotism in speaking out against torture.

Sign our petition demanding President Obama pardon CIA whistleblower John Kiriakou.

Thank you for standing up for transparency and fighting to protect whistleblowers.

In Solidarity,
Brian Sonenstein
Campaign Director,

(1.) Pardon John Kiriakou, CIA Whistleblower Convicted of Classified Leak, Kevin Gosztola, The Dissenter, 1/15/2013.


(2.) The Only CIA Officer Scheduled to Go to Jail Over Torture Never Tortured Anybody, Kevin Gosztola, The Dissenter, 1/6/2013.


(3.) Obama’s War on Whistleblowing: Ex-CIA Agent Indicted Under Espionage Act, Kevin Gosztola, The Dissenter, 4/6/2012.


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Preston, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
90 years old, political gay activist, hosting two web sites, one personal: http://www.red-jos.net one shared with my partner, 94-year-old Ken Lovett: http://www.josken.net and also this blog. The blog now has an alphabetical index: http://www.red-jos.net/alpha3.htm