Strange that the Christmas Island detention centre is full, forcing Curtin to be re-opened, and the government is tightening up on asylum seeker applications — yet there is another purpose-built centre standing empty in nearby Papua New Guinea, which the government refuses to consider. That’s despite the local people and the PNG government wanting it re-opened, as it brings them some much-needed revenue. As local newspaper The National wrote over the weekend: “Due to economic significance for the local Manus community, an official from the PNG Foreign Affairs Department said the matter could be raised at the next Australian ministerial forum …”

Why is it that the federal government has sat on a report that it commissioned on homelessness among veterans for more than a year now? Like so many “more than the usual”  stats to do with veterans — trauma, suicide, violence, imprisonment, substance misuse, early death — the government is scared that the truth comes out about the real cost of war…

Anthony Flannery is leaving his highly stressed post as director of news and current affairs at TVNZ and returning to Australia. He’s coming back to Melbourne where he’s said to be in line to follow Michael Venus into the GTV9  news director’s role. It’s a tale that has been around TV now for a month or more, but won’t die. It will be Nine Network (well Nine Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane) news and current affairs boss Mark Calvert who will have to make the move happen.

Peter Fray

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