“Aussie in spy scandal,” says The Australian,
with news that an Australian Defence employee has become
embroiled in an international espionage scandal involving the alleged
sale of top-secret US B-2 Stealth bomber technology to foreign powers.
Defence Materiel Organisation officer Arthur Lazarou, a retired Royal
Australian Navy lieutenant-commander, is the subject of an internal
Defence investigation over his links to US engineer Noshir Gowadia, who
was charged last month with disclosing military secrets – which could
be “used to cause injury” to the US – to representatives of eight
foreign governments and corporations.

And Australia is on its way to Germany, says the paper. On its way to the World Cup for the first time in 32 years. At 10.45pm last night, after two agonising hours of football,
Adelaide-born John Aloisi – who had promised his wife he would kick the
winning goal – stepped forward with 12 yards between him and a
long-dreamed-of destiny.

Four Australian women have been detained while trying to board a
plane in Syria, reportedly after gun parts were found inside a
child’s toy, reports the SMH in “Australians held ‘over hijack plot’.” The Department of Foreign Affairs said two women from Victoria
and two from NSW were with two Iraqi women when they were detained
at Damascus airport on Tuesday. All six were of Iraqi origin, the department said.

Meanwhile in its “football special,” the paper
notes how it’s “a lot more fun witnessing history than reliving it.”
Step
by painful step, the past 31 years of unfulfilled expectation have
defined football in this country. Last night at Homebush Bay, the
decades of hurt were finally washed away – soothed by a Socceroos
performance as good as it gets. “So, this is what it feels like to have
a tumour removed…” is how Basil Hegazi and Jon McDonald put it in The Ageode to last night’s match, “Goodbye soccer, hello football.”

More terror inThe Daily Tele which details how a former taxi driver with
alleged links to some of the world’s most dangerous terrorist groups
had been allowed to work inside Sydney’s prisons – simply by changing a
single letter of his name. In an “extraordinary admission yesterday,” Premier Morris Iemma conceded
that police checks had failed to detect western Sydney Islamic cleric
Anwar Hisam Al Barq’s criminal history and alleged links to Middle
Eastern terrorist groups.

While also leading with Socceroo-mania, the Herald Sun notes how thousands of new-home buyers in
Melbourne’s boom outer suburbs will be hit with an $8000 tax to pay for
roads, schools and services. The tax will apply to 220,000 homes to be built on the city fringe over the next 25 years.

In Queensland, a power plant touted by the State
Government as pioneering renewable energy generation is a
multimillion-dollar flop, says The Courier-Mail. The troubled Rocky Point co-generation plant in the Woongoolba-Jacobs
Well area south of Brisbane is expected to be sold at a fraction of its
cost. The power plant – which uses sugarcane and timber waste to
produce electricity – has cost its government-owned operator Stanwell
Corp. tens of millions of dollars since it was commissioned three years
ago. It was worth $60 million when it opened in 2002 but is now valued
at $7.5 million.

Meanwhile, the parlous outlook for next year’s ACT Budget appears to have
worsened, notes The Canberra Times, with leaked government documents revealing there is little money
to fund new projects or election promises, and more Public Service jobs
might be shed. A leaked submission to Cabinet, apparently written by Treasurer Ted
Quinlan, says the Government is “at risk” of failing to meet its
forecast operating results for this and next financial years.

Vivian Alvarez, the Australian woman wrongly deported to the
Philippines four years ago is set to return home under a deal which
will see her given free accommodation and medical care indefinitely, notes The Advertiser. And Tasmania’s Police Commissioner will not
investigate allegations of bribery made against Racing Minister Jim Cox
after receiving legal advice that there is no Tasmanian law under which
he could be charged, reports The Mercury. Police Commissioner Richard McCreadie said yesterday there was no need
for a police inquiry into the claims made in State Parliament last week
that Mr Cox had tried to bribe the Tasmanian Jockeys Association.

More transport woes in WA with news in The West that the main contractor on the Perth to Mandurah rail line fears city roads
and multi-storey buildings would be damaged if workers strike during
crucial times of the tunnel’s construction. Leighton-Kumagai told the Australian Industrial Relations Commission
yesterday that unscheduled stoppages would change vital pressure levels
in the tunnel, which could cause sedimentary movement. It is
understood this could burst sewerage and cable pipes and could cause
sections of nearby roads to cave in, forming potholes. And in Darwin, soldiers at Robertson Barracks
are being bussed to pubs and clubs in the city in an army crackdown on
drink-driving.
Soldiers also will be breath-tested by military police when they drive on the base, says the NT News.