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We, the undersigned, call for a major change in government priorities in the coming 2021 budget.
The writing is on the wall that we in Australia and countries around the world, urgently require a radical transformation of industry, transport and energy to avoid the worst of the climate crisis. With that transformation will come great opportunities for sustainable industry and ethical jobs.
Our government instead is pushing negative job creation through the manufacture of military equipment which both benefits the big weapons corporations as well as being sold to countries allegedly committing war crimes, such as Saudi Arabia.
We call on our government to prioritize spending in the upcoming budget on the transition to clean energy technologies, and stop funding arms corporations and businesses.
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“HSBC is a bank that does harm. It invests in harming people. HSBC and EOS are partners in war-crime and #WarCrimesMatter Sign this petition now http://bit.ly/NoArms4Yemen HSBC invests money in an Australian company that sells arms to Saudi Arabia. Electro Optic Systems (EOS) sells a lethal missile fire system: R400s to Saudi Arabia and the UAE. There is proof via photos of their products at Sydney airport. Both countries EOS sell to have been involved in war crimes in Yemen, bombing civilians and civilian infrastructure. Bombing civilians is a war crime. The war in Yemen is 5 years old in March 2020. It’s possible that EOS is also selling to other war torn environments and dictatorships such as Mali and Congo given that their weapons exports are increasing significantly and 90% of their income is exports.
“EOS is selling weapons to Saudi Arabia & Israel, states involved in wars & human rights abuses. We’re calling on the Australian Government to cancel EOS’ export licences, withdraw its support of the arms trade and lessen its military spending”
Watch a video of the protest here.
Call to action in support of GDAMS through their social media.
The United Nations Secretary General has called for a ceasefire in all wars throughout the world. The Pope in his Easter message has called for end to all wars. Yet the Australian Government is continuing to build and buy war materiel. ADF personnel are participating in military exercises now and in the future (eg Pitch Black, RimPac). Subsidies to arms traders are still in place and are being used to produce weapons for Saudi Arabia, Israel and other countries. In the middle of the coronavirus pandemic it is essential that all our country’s resources are devoted to the dealing the health crisis. The government must end all ADF participation in war games and end all arms exports now.
Later on, the Australia Anti-Bases Campaign Coalition created this KitAction
- The Australian Government’s increase in military expenditure is pure fear-mongering and compromises urgent social needs.
- The objective to project significant military power far from Australia’s shores only contributes to regional instability while undermining our security and peaceful relations with our neighbours.
The Morrison Government’s decision to spend $575 billion on the Defence budget over the next ten years to 2029-30, including $279 billion in defence capabilities, is of great concern to the Independent and Peaceful Australia Network (IPAN).
“There are numerable pressing issues impacting on the wellbeing of Australians that are more deserving of such budgetary investments. That the Federal Government has committed to spending this eyewatering amount over the next decade in the midst of a massive health and economic crisis makes it all the more extraordinary”, stated IPAN spokesperson.
PDF version: Media Release re Increased Military Expenditure
On 23 March 2020, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic ravaging the world, the UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres called for a global ceasefire. The UN call highlights the disparity between the huge financial and technological resources invested in wars, and the under-funded and under-resourced public health systems desperately trying to control this deadly virus.
The UN call for a worldwide ceasefire means little unless foreign military forces are sent back to their home countries. To that end we call on the Australian government to bring home our military forces from battle zones in the Middle East, Afghanistan and the Philippines, and to close the Pine Gap function that supports U.S. drone warfare Hundreds of billions of our tax dollars are used to buy military equipment largely to support the U.S. military agenda around the world.
In spite of this difficult period of physical distancing, people are organising and helping each other and building social unity. We need to make sure we come out of these crises with a more humane, just and democratic society.
We need a society that prioritises the health, education and safety of people and the environment over war.
We need a society that builds Australia’s self-reliant and diverse industries to manufacture and produce for the needs of the people, and an economy that’s not based on multinational profit making.
We need a society that invests in our research scientists, the CSIRO and other public research institutions, not globalised corporations in search of profit.
We need a society that prioritises peace, justice and the health of people and the environment – an independent and peaceful Australia.
This statement is the initiative of IPAN, the Independent and Peaceful Australia Network. Download a pdf of the notice published in a national newspaper.
This press release will be on the occasion of the release by new Military Spending data by SIPRI.
HSBC stop funding the war in Yemen. Campaign to demand that the bank HSBC stops financing EOS, which sells weapons to Saudis. Postcards were filled in by protesters at a street stall. Organised by Independent and Peaceful Australia and Australian Anti-Bases Campaign Coalition as a protest for EOS contracts to sale weapons to Saudi Arabia and UAE, directly involved in the Yemen war.
12 noon to 1pm at EOS Office, 75 Elisabeth St (near cnr with King). Organised by Independent and Peaceful Australia and Australian Anti-Bases Campaign Coalition as a protest for EOS contracts to sale weapons to Saudi Arabia and UAE, directly involved in the Yemen war. More info on the events here.
Click here and here to see the videos of the demo on April 11.
Media Conference at Sydney Parliament on May 2 with SIPRI details, to coincide with other GCOMS conferences. IPAN is developing a national campaign on “Dont Buy into War”: The Australian government has recently announced a $3.8 billion loan fund to assist in making Australia one of the largest arms exporters in the world. This is on top of planned expenditure of $50 billion on 12 new submarines, $86 billion on air warfare ships and $17 billion on 70 new fighter planes, none of which are essential for the defence of Australia. The Press Conference at Sydney Parliament was offered by Kellie Tranter, lawyer and activist, Sister Monica Cavanagh, congregational leader for the Sisters of Saint Joseph and professor Stuart Rees, Human Rights activist and founder of the Sydney Peace Foundation. Watch the videos: Video1 – Video2 – Video3
IPAN Media Release calling for reduction in military spending 2 May 2018: Global Campaign on Military Spending calls for a 10% reduction in military expenditure in all countries: “Global military spending has increased to $1739 billion in 2017, according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute. This amount of resources being directed to rearmament is morally bankrupt”, says Annette Brownlie, Chair of the Independent and Peaceful Australia Network, which is supporting the global campaign. “The top 10 spenders in 2017 were the USA (with an increase of $700 billion over 2016), China, Russia, Saudi Arabia, India, France, UK, Japan, Germany and South Korea. This shows an overall constant increase over the last five consecutive years,” said Ms Brownlie. “The Global Campaign’s statement says, ‘Funds that are now spent in the military are urgently needed to reduce inequalities, to increase worldwide cooperation, to remove energy injustices, to focus on the causes that generate huge numbers of refugees and displaced people, to implement people-based global market regulations and to build a peaceful world’. “We believe jobs should be created in sectors which make a positive contribution to our society and environment, not in exporting arms, as the Australian Government has recently announced plans to do,” Ms Brownlie said. “In relation to Australia, our aid program is at the lowest percentage of GDP ever – increasing aid to our neighbours and areas devastated by conflict will do more to build our security than more arms and ‘defence’ spending. “We need more public housing to be built, more jobs for indigenous people, more teachers, nurses, doctors, more funding to schools, child care and universities, more investment in renewable energy and public transport, more help to refugees, not more arms. We need urgent action on climate change. We need an increase in wages for the lower paid workers. “We need funding for urgent social needs, not an arms export industry and increased ‘defence’ spending,” said Ms Brownlie. IPAN supports war powers reform, as a first step to having more public discussion on the role of our military, and to avoid the situation that occurred when the Government committed troops to an illegal war in Iraq, against the wishes of the Australian people. – Organized by Independent and Peaceful Australia Network – Media Interviews: Contact Annette Brownlie 0431 597 256 – IPAN Media Liaison: Kathryn Kelly, contact 0417 269 984
Preparation of the Canberra action on the lawns of the National Parliament on the 8th May at 12 midday – all welcome – For more information: firstname.lastname@example.org
Action at Bus Station near Central Railway. We performed the MIMOD awards which stands for Most Improved Merchant of Death. Of course that goes to AUSTRALIA and its minister for defence industry Mr Christopher Pyne, the Government of which he is a member has put aside $3.8 bill to fund and subsidise Australian weapons manufacturers. The aim being to be 10th in the world for arms sales up from 20th. In light of medal ceremonies for the Winter Olympics, the Commonwealth Games and soon the World Cup of Soccer why have a medal ceremony for the merchants of death!. We staged our ceremony in a busy part of town and distributed leaflets. – Look at the photos, and watch the videos: https://youtu.be/jYAju33fiJs – and also: https://youtu.be/W83_thO59gk
Now with $140 million being spent raining down missiles onto Syria illegally, we protested this waste at a small rally (30-45 minutes) next to King George Square at 5pm on April 19th. We had our red T-shirts (NO Billions for Bombs etc.). Attendants created their own placards to bring attention to Australia’s military spending ($90 million per day!), and to Australia’s support for the illegal bombing of Syria by the USA, UK and France. Just Peace has supported the GCOMS campaign for many years. Download the media release, and look at the photo of the rally!
New video on military sales by Australian government: https://youtu.be/BhfqQzMVJxI
New video on military sales by Australian government: https://youtu.be/BhfqQzMVJxI
The congregation of the Melbourne Unitarian Church and guests came together on April 23rd at the invitation of the Campaign for International Co-operation and Disarmament (CICD) to hold aloft signs saying ‘Move the Money project –If I had $67 billion I would spend it on HOUSING, REFUGEES,EDUCATION and HEALTH.
22th April 2017: Sidney Demonstration, Town Hill Sq.: Move the money to social welfare.
Wesley Uniting Church corner, Perth, Western Australia
Global Day of Action Against Military Spending
Street presence during the busy lunch hour, with all those banners on display. The street presence was preceded by a coffee house briefing on foreign affairs issues from the Greens Senator, Scott Ludlam.
As well as handing out a flyer, we were also asking people how they would prefer to spend the $67billion which is currently in our defence budget for F35 jet fighter and submarines. We got some interesting answers, which we will forward to our foreign Minister. A few people said they totally approved of that spending, but most realised that such huge expenditures on items which suit the U.S. military agenda, and which do not even contribute to the defence of Australia, could be much more usefully spent on things like health, education sheltering homeless people, being kinder to refugees, ensuring that we have a good public transport system and so on.
Link to Photos (Photography: Desire Mallet): look at them here!
Organised by People for Nuclear Disarmament – part of the Independent Peaceful Australia Network
Garema Place, Camberra: Speakers, music and more
Working for an independent Australian foreign policy, a cessation of our current disastrous wars, and diverting greater resources from war and its preparation, to much needed social services like health, housing, climate change, education, NDIS, domestic violence mitigation, childcare, indigenous wellbeing and other urgent social needs.
Have a look at the flyer!
25th March 2017: Brisbane March
Almost 200 people marched through Brisbane on March 25 as part of the March in March mobilisation.
Venue: Marise Paine office in Parramatta Minister for Defence (the military)
Timing: 12 noon to at least 1pm
- large F35 Nick to refurbish
- submarines & other models – Denis to organise materials to refurbish at working
- Hannah to prepare fake $100 bills with statement on back
- Large banner – Denis to redo as decided; Frank & Denis to organise printing; cost
to be shared by IPAN NSW and AABCC
- Placards – Placards to be completed at working bee.
- placard slogans to reach Hannah Tuesday 22 April
- Working bee Friday 1 April 10.30am rear of 74 Buckingham St
- Action Friday 15 April 12 noon
On April 14th, The band Draw released the video clip of their song “Wave Rider Blues” which contains footage from the nuclear weapon test operation Tumbler-Snapper. It is their response to ‘the threat of nuclear war’ and a call to ”work together to stop nuclear proliferation and protect life on this planet from annihilation.’ Links to the Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR).
On Monday 13th, over lunch hour, the People for Nuclear Disarmament in Western Australia hand out almost 300 leaflets in Perth. The venue, thanks again to Uniting Church in the City, Perth, was outside Wesley Church in Perth.
They managed some good discussions and signatures for the letter they wrote to Julie Bishop, the Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs, to urge her to look a fresh at Australia’s military spending.
Just Peace Queensland screened a documentary produced by Academy Award nominee David Bradbury. It is called Waging Peace and is a window into the passions and politics of the modern Australian peace movement. Read also MP Terri Butler’s ‘New Military Spending Data a Reminder of the Importance of Peace’ media release.
Handed out 900 leaflets at central mall in Adelaide.
Click here to read the GDAMS WILPF Australia statement.
View here the poster created by IPAN ( Independent and Peaceful Australia Network ) concerning the F-35.
Click here to view the F35 flyer handed out by Just peace Brisbane.
Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom Australian Section: As part of its campaign Challenging Militarism and its overall aim of universal disarmament, WILPF issued a statement to support GDAMS.
Peacebus organised a manifestation in front of the Defence headquarter in Canberra. Read the illustrated report here.
Just Peace Queensland Inc. presented its case for a serious reduction of military spending by Australia in several ways. Read here about their actions.
Global military spending rose to US $1.74 trillion in 2011. The Australian government spends $25 billion a year — or $68 million per day — on defence spending.
This is a travesty when 125,000 Australians are homeless every night and budget cuts are being made to higher education.
Demonstrations were held on April 15 in cities around Australia and in over 100 centres world wide to mark a global day of action on military spending. This coincides with the publication by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute of world military expenditures for the past year.
Australian Anti-Bases Campaign Coalition
The Australian Anti-Bases Campaign Coalition launched this video on April 12:
Peacebus.com / WILPF / Women in Black
“We were the valiant few occupying the forecourt of the Australian Department of Defence buildings in Russell, Canberra. Just a dozen of us with flags, banners and Peacebus.com PA booming to impassive architecture… And we were magnificent. The speeches were well informed and well spoken. Thanks to Dr Sue Wareham from Medical Association for the Prevention of War, Dr David Johnson, Quaker non violent activist, Margaret Bearlin,WILPF and Clair Hochstetler, Australian chapter of Christian Peacemaker Teams.”
“We were small in numbers but all up the efforts were judged by all to be worthwhile… Just Peace sent 48 members of Parliament letters calling for cuts to military spending and preservation of funding (currently threatened in the upcoming budget) to health social and cultural recipients.”