Oceanía

Back in February 2017, Scott Morrison, now the prime minister of Australia, brought a lump of coal to Parliament. He waved it around.

“This is coal,” Morrison told his fellow legislators. “Don’t be afraid, don’t be scared.”

Morrison went on to mock the opposition leader, Bill Shorten, over his party’s enthusiasm for renewable energy. “If Bill Shorten becomes the prime minister,” Morrison said, “all the lights will go off around the country.”

Such sentiments may have won votes two years ago, but they seem less sure-fire today. Morrison’s government is facing an election on May 18 and climate change is a key issue among voters.…  Seguir leyendo »

En un mundo de hombres, la pitufina es la única mujer. Ellos son la norma, ella es el retoque. Ellos definen a la comunidad, su historia y su código de valores. Ella sólo existe en el marco que ellos decidan, tiene un papel simbólico, el de realzar los estereotipos establecidos por ellos. Así es en los dibujos animados, así es muchas veces en el cine, y así también es en la vida real, cuando se trata de definir los rasgos de la comunidad. Lo hemos visto en Nueva Zelanda.

Sí. En un gesto de solidaridad con las víctimas del sangriento ataque contra los creyentes de la mezquita de Christchurch, las mujeres libres de Nueva Zelanda decidieron acicalarse y cubrir su melena con un velo.…  Seguir leyendo »

‘The long campaigns against Tasmania’s old laws targeting gay and trans people have given LGBTI Tasmanians the unique opportunity to raise awareness about the problems we face.’ Photograph: Alamy Stock Photo

The Tasmanian parliament is poised to pass the best laws for transgender and gender-diverse people; not only in the nation, but on the planet.

Both houses have agreed to the reform, with the only remaining step being lower house assent to upper house amendments. Unless the Hodgman government plans to stymie the clear wishes of majorities in both houses of parliament, these laws will become fact in the very near future.

When the laws come into effect, they will allow a trans or gender diverse person to self-determine their gender identity and have this identity officially recognised on their birth certificate.…  Seguir leyendo »

A message left among flowers and tributes by the wall of the Botanic Gardens on March 17 in Christchurch, New Zealand. (Carl Court/Getty Images)

Friday’s terrorist attack in Christchurch, New Zealand, which killed at least 50 Muslims, was not an isolated event. Across Western countries, anti-Muslim hate crimes and violent attacks have been on the rise. Earlier this year, the Anti-Defamation League reported that 2018 was the worst year for far-right killings in the United States since 1995, when Timothy McVeigh killed 168 people in Oklahoma City. In Britain, the government considers far-right extremism to be an increasing threat and recently for the first time proscribed a right-wing extremist group as “terrorist.” Germany’s domestic intelligence service has observed a steady rise in the number of “potentially violent right-wing extremists,” with current estimates at 13,000.…  Seguir leyendo »

L’attentat perpétré dans deux mosquées de Christchurch a inscrit ce pays des antipodes au cœur de l’actualité internationale, tout comme son grand voisin, l’Australie, d’où vient Brenton Tarrant, le terroriste inculpé. Les sociétés néo-zélandaise et australienne s’inscrivent dans une histoire globale de l’Occident en dépit d’une géographie aux antipodes de l’Europe et d’une projection au cœur de ce siècle asiatique. L’arme et les munitions du principal accusé, couvertes de références, sont un bréviaire d’une interprétation de l’histoire centré sur une perspective millénariste d’affrontements entre monde chrétien et musulman, des croisades aux attaques de Québec, et des guerres contre les Ottomans aux attentats d’Oslo et de l’île d’Utoya.…  Seguir leyendo »

Le 15 mars, un terroriste d’extrême droite a commis un terrible attentat à Christchurch, en Nouvelle-Zélande, qui a fait 50 morts et une vingtaine de blessés graves, ciblant des musulmans. L’attaque a été filmée par une caméra GoPro diffusant en direct l’attentat sur Internet. L’objectif était de provoquer la peur dans les populations arabo-musulmanes et de montrer aux Européens et aux descendants d’Européens comment se défendre contre la supposée invasion de populations immigrées. L’auteur est un Australien de 28 ans, Brenton Tarrant. Son profil se dessine dans son manifeste, intitulé « The Great Replacement » (« Le Grand Remplacement »), mis en ligne juste avant l’attentat, un plaidoyer contre le « génocide blanc ».…  Seguir leyendo »

Why does it seem so hard for people to grasp the connection between hate-filled speech and hate-filled violence? The alleged attacker who carried out Friday’s massacre in Christchurch, New Zealand, was acting on a toxic belief system — one that has been long nurtured by opportunists in politics and the media, in Australia and elsewhere.

Those innocent victims — the toll now stands at 50 — reaped what others had sowed.

The alleged gunman, a 28-year-old Australian, saturated himself in the verbal violence of Islamophobia and white supremacy. His manifesto name-checks figures from outside Australia: people such as the United States’ Candace Owens and Norway’s murderous Anders Breivik.…  Seguir leyendo »

Al Noor Mosque, where one of two anti-Muslim terrorist attacks took place in Christchurch, New Zealand, on Friday. Credit Martin Hunter/SNPA, via Reuters

Whenever someone used to ask me if I was Muslim, I often gave an evasive answer, something like, “I was born Muslim” or “My parents are Muslim.”

It was a strange way to phrase it. I told myself that the purpose of this hairsplitting was intellectual clarity, despite the fact that I had attended a mosque my entire childhood, that I had read the Quran in both Arabic and English, and that I felt personally connected to the history of Islam. Perhaps this was the natural recourse for someone who came of age after 9/11 and was taught to retreat into invisibility because of the dangers of being Muslim.…  Seguir leyendo »

Personas afuera de una mezquita en Christchurch, el viernes. Credit Mark Baker/Associated Press

El viernes, un hombre armado se puso un casco con una videocámara, llenó su auto de armas, condujo hasta una mezquita en Christchurch, Nueva Zelanda, y comenzó a dispararles a todas las personas que veía. Ese acto terrorista fue transmitido en vivo para que todo el mundo lo viera en las redes sociales.

Cuarenta y nueve personas fueron asesinadas y más de 40 resultaron heridas en el ataque, que ocurrió en dos mezquitas distintas de la ciudad. Un sospechoso, Brenton Harrison Tarrant, fue acusado de un cargo de asesinato, y se espera que se presenten más cargos. Otras tres personas fueron detenidas por la policía, pero una fue liberada horas después.…  Seguir leyendo »

People take part in a vigil at the New Zealand War Memorial on Hyde Park Corner in London Friday. (Dominic Lipinski/AP)

It begins with humor. The alt-right’s jokes, a teenage friend assures me, are genuinely funny: They ridicule the pomposities of “mainstream” culture, laugh at political correctness and create ridiculous memes mocking everything, including themselves. And once you’ve laughed at the jokes, there is a whole amusing, darkly ironic, alternative world out there, only a couple of clicks away.

There are the YouTubers such as PewDiePie, the Swedish gamer and vlogger who has shown Nazi videos while metaphorically arching his eyebrows. Viewers are meant to get that it’s a joke: “I know my audience understand that and that is why they come to my channel,” he has said.…  Seguir leyendo »

On Friday, terrorist attacks at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, left 49 dead and scores more wounded. The attack, reportedly by an Australian shooter, has cast a spotlight on the global scope of white supremacist rhetoric and violence. The shooter left behind a manifesto riddled with the language of modern white nationalism, and wrote that he chose to commit this horror in New Zealand to show that “nowhere in the world is safe.”

As news continues to emerge about the attacker, many have focused on how the shooter may have been inspired by white nationalist rhetoric from other countries, including the United States.…  Seguir leyendo »

People write condolence messages to the victims of a mass shooting in Christchurch, New Zealand, during a candlelight vigil outside the New Zealand Embassy in Brussels on Friday. (Laurie Dieffembacq/AFP/Getty Images)

The livestreamed slaughter of 49 people at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, has shined a spotlight on how terrorists employ social media. As The Post noted on Friday: “The New Zealand massacre video, which appeared to have been recorded with a GoPro helmet camera, was announced on the fringe chat room 8chan, live-streamed on Facebook, reposted on Twitter and YouTube and discussed on Reddit.”

This is horrifying but not surprising. Terrorism is inconceivable without mass media. Terrorists, after all, typically operate by themselves or in small groups. (The Islamic State is one of the few exceptions: It had grown into a quasi-state before being reduced to its terrorist roots.) They cannot hope to defeat their enemy — a powerful nation state — by brute force.…  Seguir leyendo »

People gather at a vigil for Christchurch shooting victims at Lakemba Mosque in Sydney on Friday. (Tayyab Hameed/Reuters)

Details are still emerging about the attack in Christchurch, New Zealand, in which at least 49 people were killed at two mosques. However, it appears that one person with advance knowledge of the planned attack is an active participant in a radicalized online right-wing media culture. Before the massacre, a man posted a long manifesto, police said, which was full of inside references to online memes and ideas that are commonly circulated among the radical right. An individual announced his intention to carry out an attack on the online messaging board 8chan, linking to the manifesto, before the massacre occurred. Video that appeared to be one of the shootings was live-streamed, clearly in the hope that it would go viral on social media.…  Seguir leyendo »

The businessman Chau Chak Wing was awarded nearly $200,000 in a defamation lawsuit against one of Australia's biggest media companies. Credit Peter Rae/Epa-Efe, via Shutterstock

In the decade I spent reporting from China, the most immediate obstacles to journalism were often physical. They took many forms: barricades blocking access to certain places; men in military buzz cuts trailing me; plainclothes thugs stationed in front of the homes of people I planned to interview; and of course, the threat of police detention. In one memorable incident, an official threw himself in front of the car I was riding in with colleagues to delay our departure, precipitating an unseemly shoving match. These physical manifestations of state power were designed to muzzle through intimidation and brute force, occasionally reinforced with threats of visa refusal.…  Seguir leyendo »

Alrededor de todo el mundo, cada vez más y más países, así como también regiones, prometen dejar de emitir dióxido de carbono en el futuro. La Unión Europea gana ovaciones de los activistas verdes por establecer el objetivo de llegar a convertirse en una región “neutral en emisiones de carbono” hasta el año 2050. Varias ciudades, que van desde Adelaida hasta Boston y Rio de Janeiro, anuncian objetivos similares, y Copenhague inclusive señala que logrará dicho objetivo hasta el año 2025.

Tales promesas deben ser recibidas con una saludable dosis de escepticismo. Por ejemplo, es probable que Copenhague no llegue a alcanzar su objetivo, aun después de gastar el doble del costo planificado para lograr convertirse en una ‘ciudad carbono neutral’.…  Seguir leyendo »

A fashion boutique on Collins Place, Melbourne, Australia, in an area known as the “Paris” end of Collins Street, famous for luxury shopping and beautiful architecture. Credit Ying Ang for The New York Times

Back in the 1990s, Australia was a little bit daggy. Even that word — Antipodean slang for unfashionable, which in its initial meaning referred to the dried droppings on a sheep’s rear end — now seems quaint, a byproduct of a simpler era, when Magic Eye pictures kept kids entertained for hours and internet was dial-up.

Nowadays, however, Australia is an Instagrammer’s dream destination. Between the global ubiquity of avocado toast, ever more elaborate latte art and a proliferation of luxe-bohemian fashion labels selling the promise of endless summer, living as they do down under has become hashtag goals for many millennials.…  Seguir leyendo »

Australia’s Burning, Flooding, Disastrous New Normal

This is what climate change looks like, Australia style: A viral video, released in early January, of two middle-aged men, one a local farmer, standing knee deep in the stagnant shallows of an outback river, cradling the corpses of two enormous fish.

The river is the Darling, just south of the Menindee Lakes in northwest New South Wales, and the fish are Murray cod, native, iconic and endangered. Given their size, these two could be more than half a century old. Behind the men, who are close to weeping, thousands more fish drift belly-up, asphyxiated in a cold snap that killed the blue-green algae blooming along the river and deprived the water of oxygen.…  Seguir leyendo »

Behrouz Boochani on Manus Island in 2017.CreditCreditAdam Ferguson for The New York Times

Many writers have earned prison time as well as prizes; the Nobel laureates Liu Xiaobo and Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn come immediately to mind. But there seems to be no precedent for what happened in Australia last week, when an author named Behrouz Boochani won the country’s most valuable literary prize, the Victorian Prize for Literature, but was unable to collect his stipend in person. The same nation praising him is also keeping him in indefinite detention on a small island in the Pacific.

Mr. Boochani is a journalist of Kurdish heritage from Iran who fled the country in 2012 when the pro-Kurdish newspaper he worked for was raided by the Iranian government.…  Seguir leyendo »

Wild brumbies running through Australia’s high country.CreditCreditFairfax Media, via Getty Images

Since this country’s founding in the early 20th century, the packs of untamed horses that roam freely through our beautiful and hostile alpine landscape have captured the public’s imagination. The savage grace and freedom of the horses — known here as brumbies — have made them into a popular symbol of the national spirit.

Today, environmentalists want the brumbies shot.

Not since cattle roamed the mountain parks (before a ban in the 1950s) have animals done such damage to the alpine regions that Australians proudly call the “high country.”

A 2014 survey estimated there were more than 9,500 wild horses in the Australian Alps.…  Seguir leyendo »

Sunset approaching at Manly Beach, near Sydney, Australia.CreditCreditDavid Maurice Smith for The New York Times

When Mark Twain steamed into Sydney’s harbor in September 1895, journalists peppered him with questions before he had even stepped off the S.S. Warrimoo. “I am going to write a book on Australia,” he proclaimed. “And I think I ought to start now. You always know so much more of a country when you have not seen it than when you have.”

I imagined an exotic menagerie: animals that begin with the letter K frolicking next to shirtless Hemsworths, mostly.

Instead, I found Australia — or rather the teeny, tiny corner of this vast continent that I got the chance to experience this past month — much closer to how David Sedaris once described it: “Canada in a thong.”

It is a place where things just work.…  Seguir leyendo »