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Sophie Mirabella. IN A potential breach of electoral laws, there is no record of Liberal frontbencher Sophie Mirabella declaring any of the $100,000 in financial support she received from her then partner, Colin Howard, QC, in the lead up to her win in the seat of Indi in 2001. revealed on Thursday that Mr Howard, a Queen's counsel who was 40 years older than Ms Mirabella and retired, had cashed in some of his capital assets to help her win the rural seat of Indi in 2001. Mr Howard's daughter Lesley said her father had also lent Ms Mirabella his car and supported her financially while she set up barrister's chambers in Wangaratta to use as a base.
One of the most sensational and damaging British royal stories of the 20th century was the transcript of an illegally taped phone conversation between the married heir to the throne, Prince Charles, and his mistress, Camilla Parker Bowles. The story was ''broken'' by New Idea , the women's magazine then part of Rupert Murdoch's media empire, in January 1993. Mr Murdoch's British papers, the rest of Fleet Street and the world media then republished with abandon. The tape achieved notoriety owing to Prince Charles's wistful remark that he'd like to be his lover's "tampon", to which she replied: "You are a complete idiot.
news The Greens have demanded that Australia’s Government cancel its participation in the controversial Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement international treaty in the wake of an expected imminent rejection of the proposal by the European Union and significant and ongoing global protests against a number of its terms expected to harm Internet freedom. ACTA is a multinational treaty which aims to establish international standards for the enforcement of intellectual property rights, including setting a framework to tackle counterfeit goods, generic medicines and copyright infringement. It was signed last year by a number of large first-world countries such as Australia, Canada, Japan, Singapore and the United States. However, the general public has been excluded in many countries from the process of negotiating the treaty, and critics have slammed it, noting it could potentially affect digital rights, freedom of expression and privacy.
AS THE world commemorates the 10-year anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks, Australia's bill for fighting terrorism edges towards $30 billion, and local analysts are questioning whether we are getting value for money. The $30 billion figure is an estimate, based on expert analysis of Australian spending on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the rivers of cash poured into police and intelligence agencies, and other security measures since the September 11 attacks on the US. While the spending has been unquestioned by political leaders, analysts are asking if it is time to re-assess whether the risk warrants the expense. Their concerns come as Prime Minister Julia Gillard prepares to reaffirm Australia's military alliance with the US at a ceremony in Canberra tonight. Advertisement <iframe id="dcAd-1-4" src="http://ad-apac.doubleclick.net/adi/onl.age.news/national;cat=national;ctype=article;pos=3;sz=300x250;tile=4;ord=5.8153015E7?"
Australia marched into Afghanistan on the khaki coat-tails of the Americans in 2001 and it now seems we will be walking out ahead of previous schedules. It will be a well-overdue withdrawal and the electorate’s dissatisfaction with our presence there will have been a factor along with any military appraisal. It is an unpopular war and one the Gillard Government has been having trouble trying to justify. For nearly 12 years it has been a conflict of wrenching heartbreak for the Australian nation and no clear objectives apart from the opening slogan of a “war on terrorism”. Our engagement in Afghanistan has left civilian Australia with heightened respect for our front-line men and women but limited awareness or acceptance of why we were putting them in such danger. And then there were the casualty lists, young men in their twenties.
"The Australian Defence Minister said Australia is interested in forging a strategic partnership with Afghanistan" ... a statement from President Hamid Karzai's office. Above, Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Defence Minister Stephen Smith. Photo: Penny Bradfield AUSTRALIA is five weeks away from signing a crucial strategic agreement with Afghanistan that could cost hundreds of millions of dollars and outline Australia's postwar role there, but the government has yet to inform the public of its existence. The previously unrevealed pact, disclosed by the office of the Afghan President, Hamid Karzai, this week, is a strategic agreement that will mean Canberra provides hundreds of millions of dollars in aid in the post-2014 decade. The international community has set the end of 2014 as the deadline for all international combat operations in Afghanistan.
Dec 06, 2012 14:07 UTC by Defense Industry Daily staff Latest updates [?] : Training systems; Current program status. EA-6B Prowler (click to view full) The USA’s electronic attack fighters are a unique, overworked, and nearly obsolete capability.
The Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet are twin-engine carrier-based multirole fighter aircraft variants based on the McDonnell Douglas F/A-18 Hornet . The F/A-18E single-seat and F/A-18F tandem-seat variants are larger and more advanced derivatives of the F/A-18C and D Hornet. The Super Hornet has an internal 20 mm gun and can carry air-to-air missiles and air-to-surface weapons. Additional fuel can be carried in up to five external fuel tanks and the aircraft can be configured as an airborne tanker by adding an external air refueling system.
The Hon. Joel Fitzgibbon MP, Minister for Defence Printer friendly version 27 Feb 2009
Australian troops fighting in Afghanistan will soon have access to new state-of-the-art unmanned surveillance drones. Defence Minister Stephen Smith and Minister for Defence Materiel Jason Clare announced on Thursday that a second Shadow 200 Tactical Unmanned Aerial System (TUAS) will be delivered to the army almost a year ahead of schedule. The TUAS system, first used by the United States in Iraq, captures surveillance video during night and day which can be sent back to base up to 125km away. It can recognise targets on the ground while operating at an altitude of up to 8000ft.
The US and Australia are reportedly in talks about basing Global Hawk drones on the Cocos Islands. The United States and Australia are planning a major expansion of military ties, including possible drone flights from a coral atoll in the Indian Ocean and increased US naval access to Australian ports, as the Pentagon looks to shift its forces closer to Southeast Asia, officials from both countries said. The moves, which are under discussion but have drawn strong interest from both sides, would come on top of an agreement announced by President Obama and Prime Minister Julia Gillard in November to deploy up to 2500 US Marines to Darwin, on Australia's northern coast. The talks are the latest indicator of how the Obama administration is rapidly turning its strategic attention to Asia as it winds down a costly decade of war in Afghanistan and Iraq.
By Adam Fletcher Last Wednesday, in the aftermath of the infamous Labor leadership showdown and when all eyes were on the Carr for Canberra drama , federal Parliament passed the Extradition and Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Legislation Amendment Bill 2011 . Unless I missed it, the passage of this Bill into law garnered not a single headline, but it should have, because it makes major changes to Australia’s cooperation with other countries in criminal cases.
WA Electoral Commission to develop telephone voting system - WA Electoral Commission (WAEC), e-votingThe WA Electoral Commission (WAEC) has commenced work on a telephone-based voting system after the the State Government withdrew funding for its internet voting system. WAEC IT manager, Desmond Chenik, told Computerworld Australia the full internet voting system it was scheduled to develop this year, for the blind and vision impaired along with the armed forces, had been put on hold after several months of work. According to Chenik, the WAEC has put in another request with the government for the funding but even if the request is approved later this year, the internet-based system would not be ready in time for the next state election in March 2013 (the state now has fixed four year election periods). “It wouldn’t be ready for the next election as it would probably take 10 to 12 months of development work plus another few months of going through the design work again to make sure the technology hasn’t changed and we can’t do better or whatever.
Racist border war: politicians compete to keep out refugees fleeing war and persecution Jayasaker Jayrathna was a young Tamil refugee, driven to seek asylum due to the brutal suppression of Tamils by the government of Sri Lanka. The 27-year-old, whose mother was murdered by that same government, was in indefinite immigration detention. Although the government recognised Jayrathna as a refugee, it was stalling on his security clearance.