The Australian

leads with George Bush’s call on America and its allies not to lose
faith in the Iraq war, strengthening the Opposition’s case for the
Australian military to return to Afghanistan. The Oz also reports on John Faulkner’s comments
at the launch of the new Latham book, where he attacked the “toxic”
culture of the NSW ALP for lacking “civility, decency, honesty,
humanity and even legality.”

The Sydney Morning Herald
leads with a damning internal police report which has found that police
made numerous tactical errors during the Macquarie Fields riots,
allowing the violence to go on for four days. Also front-page news is
the shock announcement that Socceroos’ coach Frank Farina has quit after six years and just weeks before critical World Cup qualifying games. And “colourful Sydney identity” Abe Saffron, 83, who is suing John Silvester and Andrew Rule, the authors of Tough: 101 Australian Gangsters,
claimed in the Supreme Court yesterday he was defamed by being called a
crime boss and “Mr Sin” and that he appeared in the book with an
“unsavoury lot.”

The Age
reveals that The Royal Women’s Hospital is considering appealing
against the decision forcing it to provide records of a woman who had a
termination at 32 weeks, arguing it may force women seeking abortions
to turn to backstreet operators. The Age also makes much of local boy Andrew Bogut
who has made the basketball big time by being the number one selection
in the US NBA – the world’s top professional basketball league. And Jeff Kennett,
chairman of national depression initiative Beyond Blue, says he feels
very sorry for Mark Latham and advised him not to dwell on old slights
and to “ditch the bitterness.”

The Daily Telegraph
focuses on education issues with its lead story on school bullies. But
the front page is dominated by news that “serial adulterer” Shane Warne
is considering moving to South Africa after a third English woman has
admitted to having an affair with the cricket star. And while Lleyton Hewitt
was battling it out on centre court, his solicitor was appearing in
another court in Sydney where the tennis star is facing legal action
after he failed to pay $5,000 for a luxury Harbour yacht cruise last
December because photographs of him with Bec Cartwright were published
in a Sunday newspaper.

The Herald Sun splashes with “LATHAM IN DOGHOUSE” after Mark Latham blamed everyone but himself for last year’s election loss. Meanwhile, The Hun has seen a government department letter to workers at packaging giant Visy, telling them they face a $6,600 fine for breaching orders not to join the anti-James Hardie rally last year that led to a $1.5 billion settlement for asbestos victims.

The West Australian
reports that militant union chief Kevin Reynolds has threatened the
Gallop government that its biggest infrastructure project, the $1.5
billion Perth to Mandurah rail line, will be delayed and suffer further
cost blow-outs because contracts have been awarded to a non-unionised
firm. The Courier-Mail
reveals that a clinical review into 221 of Dr Jayant Patel’s patients
is expected to create a shake-up of Queensland Health protocols. In
Hobart The Mercury
reports that outspoken Tassie Labor MP Harry Quick leapt to the defence
of Mark Latham, saying he understood why the former Labor leader was so
disappointed with some members of his old party. And a Darwin man and
father of two, Garry David, 37, has been jailed for ten years in
Bulgaria for smuggling medicinal drugs, reports the Northern Territory News.

In the UK, The Guardian
reveals that former US president Richard Nixon called then-Indian prime
minister Indira Gandhi an “old witch” and Indians a “slippery
treacherous people” according to recently-released transcripts of Oval Office tapes. And The Sun
breathlessly reveals that the royal family forced the late Princess
Diana to blood test Prince Harry to prove he was not the offspring of
James Hewitt, with whom she had an affair.

Peter Fray

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