How ISIL got here

The attack on Jakarta Thursday was part of a campaign targeting citizens of countries fighting Islamic State (IS) in Iraq and Syria, according to a statement released by the group.

In a timely reminder about how we got here, We Are Many, is a film that tells the story of the huge opposition to Iraq’s invasion, and what happens when politicians ignore the people. It was shown around Australia toward the end of last year.  I put this story together about the film, with David Cosgrove.


From Reporter to Refugee


The Media Report
Thursday 17 July 2008 8:32AM
From Reporter to Refugee

Edison and Sonny are journalists. They fled the bloodshed of Sierra Leone to start a new life in Sydney. But the past is always with them—and explaining and documenting it is now the core of their work here in Australia.

The Sydney Sacred Music Festival 2014

Rehearsing at Sydwest in Blacktown, the chamber orchestra jams work around life and death. This is part of a performance for the Sydney Sacred Music Festival coming up in September. Performers are: Richard Petkovic, Assim Gorashi, Yaw Derkyi, Shohrat Tursun, Mark Szeto and Victor Valdes.

This was recorded as part of an upcoming series of stories for ABC radio on Arab and African communities. The series is called Crossroads and features the work of poets, musicians, artists and communities engaged in social change. Crossroads is being produced for Life Matters on Radio National.

Coffee Break


The Night Air
Sunday 3 August 2008 8:00PM
Coffee Break,

Time for a cuppa! In your daily coffee cup there are stories: about people, the environment, liberation struggles, friendship and art.

Coffee has helped mostly city-dwellers create outdoor cultures and social rituals, come up with new ideas and negotiate relationships. Yet the story of coffee is also about relationships between rich and poor.

In the home of coffee–’Ethiopia–coffee farmers rarely get a fair price for their beans—a fact of life for most coffee producing countries.

Come with Nadyat El Gawley she travels through time to Sydney’s earliest coffee houses and Melbourne’s contemporary coffee culture. We visit Australian brigadistas picking coffee beans in Nicaragua over 20 years ago, question advertising and dive into caffeine obsession. And after your latte, cappuccino and macchiato—shake your body to a rich Night Air blend of caffeinated music from across the coffee-growing and coffee-quaffing world.

Use My Body As A Bridge To The other Side Of The River

Muslim women, Australia Day Parade, 2010
Muslim women,
Australia Day Parade, 2010 Michael Coghlan, Flickr, CC

Street Stories
Wednesday 21 September 2005 1:30PM
Use My Body As A Bridge To The other Side Of The River

This program is a journey alongside three Melbourne women from Muslim communities who share their stories of change. Confronting stereotypes with good humour and thoughtfulness, Reem, Nazife and Suzanne break through barriers of sexism – in their own and in broader Australian cultural landscapes – to assert their own identities.

With much courage and candour the women reveal the personal dimensions of escaping wars and communities and finding dreams.

No Excuse Not to Know

Jewish voices for peace

No Excuse Not to Know
Street Stories
Sunday 16 November 2008 1:30PM

From within the Jewish Australian community voices of dissent are emerging, people who are challenging the mainstream version of the history of Israel and the current conflict the country is involved in. They speak about how they came to their understanding of history and the friends they have lost as a result.

Israel’s official history has been challenged for some time now by Israel’s New Historians and one of the latest books challenging Israel’s historical narrative has come from Israeli society itself. Avraham Burg’s The Holocaust Is Over argues that Israel’s use of the holocaust has created a nation with a self image of victimhood, which allows all sorts of atrocities against The Palestinians…

‘be it fences, sieges … curfews, food and water deprivation or unexplained killings. All is permitted because we have been through the Shoah (catastrophe) and you will not tell us how to behave.’

In Australia, where the largest community of holocaust survivors lives, it has been difficult to break through the grip of the belief that Israel is the solution to ending discrimination and persecution of Jews, and must always be defended.

But, this emerging voice among the Australian Jewish community is questioning the dominant story and actively supports Palestinian aspirations for justice and peace in their homeland.

We speak to three Australian Jews who have thoughtfully and courageously spoken out, acted in support of Palestinians and battled their own families and communities to live their lives with integrity and candour.