Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Karl Lagerfeld + Modelco Beauty Butlers Bring Paris to a Standstill

KARL LAGERFELD and MODELCO are pleased to announce the global launch of their limited-edition colour cosmetics collection today. To celebrate, KARL LAGERFELD and ModelCo will take over Paris.

100 KARL LAGERFELD + MODELCO "Beauty Butlers" will make their mark in Paris throughout the day. They will all be dressed in custom-designed helmets that are a 3D cartoon reinterpretation of Karl Lagerfeld. This design is also a key element in the collection and appears on the LIP LIGHTS Lip Gloss, the collection's hero product.

The "Beauty Butlers" will visit iconic locations in Paris including the Eiffel Tower, Les Tuileries, Champs-Elysées, Saint-Germain-des-Près, Montparnasse and Palais de Tokyo —inviting members of the public to join them for a special performance at each stop along the way. The Beauty Butlers' finale will be at 8pm at Place Vendôme, in front of the Hotel d'Evreux where the event space will be transformed into an uber-cool, hot pink neon extravaganza, with VIP guests treated to KARL LAGERFELD + MODELCO collection art style installations, cocktails and Perrier-Jouët champagne.

Featuring a range of innovative beauty products, the limited-edition collection will be available through KARL LAGERFELD stores and MODELCO.COM and key exclusive retailers: Nordstrom in the US, in Europe at Douglas, Nocibe, Cult Beauty and Galeries Lafayette, and in the Middle East at selected retailers.

"The Beauty Butlers storming the streets of Paris represent the bold, fashion oriented and unique attributes of the KARL LAGERFELD + MODELCO colour cosmetics and collectible range. We achieved our goal of elevating this partnership on a global stage and certainly raised the bar for creativity and style. I was honoured to fuse ModelCo's beauty knowledge with one of the world's most renowned and iconic names in fashion, Karl Lagerfeld and bring our collaboration to lovers of fashion and beauty around the world. It was an honour to launch our collection in Paris" said Shelley Sullivan, Founder and CEO of ModelCo.

"Our consumers are at the heart of our business, and we are excited to inspire them with the innovative KARL LAGERFELD + ModelCo beauty collection," said Pier Paolo Righi, CEO of KARL LAGERFELD. "It translates KARL's vision and brand spirit into iconic cosmetics, and we look forward to launching this limited-edition collection."

The KARL LAGERFELD + ModelCo collection campaign features British supermodel Stella Maxwell alongside an animated, 3D character of Karl Lagerfeld. The products are limited edition and will have one stock drop only.

Friday, April 27, 2018

Monash’s Masterpiece: The Battle of Le Hamel and the 93 Minutes that Changed the World

Just as there is a calm before the storm, a trough before a wave, so
too is there a lull after the storm is over, a serenity of sorts after the
last receding rumble of the major battle has gone, leaving only the
recurring echoes.
Such is the situation for the Australian forces, in the first days of
May 1918, in France. For, oh, what a battle the Kaiserschlacht had
been, and how well the Australians had done! But it had come at a
huge cost: 12,000 casualties. For the moment the Australians must
lick their wounds, rebuild their forces, and wait while Berlin works
out what to do next. Given that the Germans retain a large reserve of
troops, there is every chance that they will launch once more and the
only questions are when, and where? As ever, the most likely answers
are ‘soon’, and ‘at Amiens or Paris’.
Across the Australian Corps it is really only General Sir John
Monash’s 3rd Division who, restless for more action, continue to
push their line forward.
‘The Third Division had had enough of stationary warfare, and the
troops were athirst for adventure,’ Monash would later recount. ‘They
were tired of raids, which mean a mere incursion into enemy territory,
and a subsequent withdrawal, after doing as much damage as possible.
Accordingly I resolved to embark on a series of minor battles, designed
not merely to capture prisoners and machine guns, but also to hold
onto the ground gained.’4
Typically of Monash-organised excursions, they go well, with four
small battles between 30 April and 7 May yielding several hundred
prisoners who ‘impart a mass of valuable information’,5 numerous
machine guns, and a net mile of gained territory!
‘During the last three days,’ Field Marshal Haig admiringly records
in his diary after the last successful raid, ‘[the Australian 3rd Division]
advanced their front about a mile . . . The ground gained was twice as
much as they had taken at Messines last June, and they had done it
with very small losses; some 15 killed and 80 wounded; and they had
taken nearly 300 prisoners.’6
There is only one problem. The further Monash’s men push the
Germans back to the east, in their positions just north of the Somme,
the more it exposes their right flank to the Germans on the south.
‘I was in possession of much the higher ground,’ Monash would
recount, ‘and was able to look down, almost as upon a map, onto the
enemy in the Hamel basin, yet I was beginning to feel very seriously the
inconvenience of having, square on my flank, such excellent concealed
artillery positions as . . . Hamel Woods.’7
The obvious solution – and Monash attempts to persuade the
Australian Corps Commander, General Sir William Birdwood, to do
it – is to have the Corps attack south of the Somme as well, and take
the village of Hamel and the basin it is positioned in. Alas, it is decided
that for the moment the Australian forces there need more time to
recover from their exertions of the previous six weeks.
At least, while the bulk of Diggers wait for the next move to be
made, they are in a fine part of the world to be so waiting, with none
appreciating it more than the gnarled veterans among them.
Training in Cairo they’d been in the blistering deserts. At Gallipoli
they had been in bloody trenches. For two years on the Western Front
they’d lived like moles in bloody, muddy trenches, stormed at with
shot and shell . . . and now? Now, it is springtime in France! After
their heroic efforts at Villers-Bretonneux and the subsequent German
retreat, things are relatively quiet, as the Australian task is merely to
hold the Western Front defending the key town of Amiens.
It places them in one of the most picturesque parts of France,
a dreamy patchwork of wheat and maize fields, sheep and cattle
paddocks, abandoned small villages with cobblestone streets . . . and
many cellars still stocked with wine.
Yes, life does offer better things, but not for an Australian soldier
it doesn’t. There is even a bit of shooting to be done, to keep them
interested, and therein lies a tale.

For after the Germans’ failed attempt to take Amiens, the most
forward elements of the German Army have come to a halt at the point
where their offensive force has been equalled by defensive resistance. It
means that rather than holding a well-thought-out, superbly engineered
major system of built-up trenches, the exhausted Germans have simply
dug in the best they can in the chalky soil, wherever they can, as they
work out their next move. They no longer hold their own line with a
combination of concrete pill-boxes, dugouts, rolls of barbed wire and
carefully positioned machine-gun posts that can deliver devastating
fire on any intruder within 400 yards. Instead they occupy a series of
non-continuous trenches, with dangerous gaps between, guarded by
rolls of barbed wire here and there, and machine-gun posts scattered
sporadically rather than bristling from every part.
And there is no effort to strengthen their line! This is, in part,
a measure of the Germans’ exhaustion and diminished resources, and
also because their commander, Erich Ludendorff, has forbidden such
consolidation on the reckoning they must keep the Allies guessing about
whether they intend to advance once more, stay, or retreat.
Hence, what the Australians are up to now – holding the ten miles
of the Western Front that they have just so wonderfully held over
the last six weeks, with three Divisions in the front-line trenches at
any time, and one Division in reserve for two weeks at a time before
rotating. Far and away the most important part of the line they are
holding is that which lies in front of the French town of Amiens,
stretching from the River Somme, to the Roman Road, a cobblestoned
thoroughfare – first built by the Romans nearly two millennia earlier
– which goes east from Villers-Bretonneux to Saint Quentin. From
atop the highest point of the Australian section – Hill 104, just 3000
yards back from the front-lines – you can see the full gloriousness of
the French countryside, the rich mosaic of ancient villages, even more
ancient farmlands boasting clover and wheat fields, and out to the
left the timeless Somme, in a marshy valley winding its majestic way
through the dreamy landscape. Ah, and of course, from here you can
look straight across to German-held territory, including a dangerous
bulge in their line around the village of Hamel and, just behind it, the
hill of Wolfsberg, nearly as high as Hill 104 and covered with German
observers watching them in turn.
They’ll keep.
For now, the tone is set by a few sentences in the diary of one
Australian soldier occupying his trenches in this early part of May.
‘I wonder if I’ll ever see Australia again,’ he writes. ‘This life seems
so unreal at times and one can see no end of the war in sight. The
wood in front of us looks so beautiful in the sunlight and life seems
so good, yet there is death in the . . . shells and whistling bullets.’8
Even though in comparison to what these men have lately known, it
is all quiet on the Western Front, in many ways it is a little too quiet.
So quiet, in fact, if you cock your ear to the wind right now, you
will hear something extraordinary.
For, yes, now, in the area a mile or so back from those front-line
trenches, what is this that the Diggers have dragged out of an abandoned
chateau, put on a ‘shell-torn cart’ and dragged back here to the Diggers’
dugout? Why, it is a grand piano! A huge one. A grand grand piano.
Well, yes, it had been found midst ‘sheets of music . . . strewn all
over the floor, pictures & costly ornaments broken by shell fire, lovely
cushioned chairs broken’, and has taken a bit of a hit, suffering ‘4 shrapnel
holes in the woodwork’.9 But while the chateau itself looked fine from
a distance and was ruined up close . . . this, this is quite the reverse!
For now look.
Up steps a Digger with intent, and with the grand theatricality of
the maestro he maybe once was, his fingers stretching skywards before
gliding downward, he starts to play.
And play, and play, and play! See his fingers flow over the keyboard
with impossible speed. Hear the music float out over the bloody trenches
that serve as ugly slashes through the fields of dandelions, daisies and
daffodils, and watch what happens now.
For as his chords float forth, and the battered piano delivers a
pitch-perfect performance, heads start to bob up in yonder trenches.
The bloke on latrine duty throws down his shovel, and walks on
over. Passing platoons stop their weapons check and gather round.
The bloke hauling the mess-cart stops, and comes on over. Diggers in
dugouts come on out, like moles from a hole after the winter is over,
and springtime has arrived. A crowd of mud-men gathers around the
messy maestro, as still he keeps on playing.
Is it Brahms? Beethoven? Liszt? Mozart? Chopin? One of them
German or Austrian coves, anyway?
Buggered if they know, most of them. But they know the Digger
can play and play extraordinarily well, as the birds sing, and bombs
burst in the distance.
A passing English major is so impressed, he asks will they sell the
Can the Germans in their trenches over yonder hear it, too?
They hope so. For they, too, must surely say, Play on, young man,
play on. Das ist gute Musik!
Still the Digger does not look up, transported to a place far away,
just as they all are, magically transported to a place where men aren’t
set on killing each other, where you can see your families, and go out
on a Saturday night with your best girl, and the following day have
Sunday roast with Mum and Dad and Auntie Dot. Where you can go
to bed every night, with full confidence that you will see the sunrise.
Oh, play, Digger, play, as these Australians far from home soak up
every note, many of them luxuriating in the finest silk panties beneath
their muddy strides, their luscious drawers purloined from the drawers
of Madame who had left yonder chateau a few days before. One of
them stands there dressed for a joke as a combination of a fine French
gentleman and lady with ‘a tall black hat & white lace parasol’10 that
he has also ‘souvenired’, as the Australians are pleased to call looting.
‘Lor’ isn’t it funny,’ one Digger notes admiringly in his diary of his
brothers-in-arms. ‘They take nothing, not even war, seriously, though
in the trenches Fritz learns what they are made of.’11
And yet while it is one thing to be such brothers-in-arms and feel that
deep bond that comes with fighting for your life and the man beside
you, while he does the same for you . . . it is quite another when your
brothers-in-arms are your actual brothers, flesh of your flesh, blood
of your blood, spirit of your spirit.

Men of the 15th Battalion, on the day of the fight at Hamel,
worn out and asleep under camouflage which was found
covering a German trench mortar in Pear Trench. (AWM E02664)

The Geddes brothers of the 13th Battalion are a case in point,
and the middle one, Cliff, is right here, right now, soaking up the
music. Originally from Warialda, up Moree way, the brothers Geddes
– 35-year-old Sergeant Aubrey Geddes, 30-year-old Corporal Cliff
Geddes and 24-year-old Sapper Stanley Geddes – had all been bank
clerks before enlisting, and have been in the thick of the heavy fighting
ever since. Aubrey, known as ‘Boo’ to the family, is with B Company
of the 13th Battalion, while Cliff is with D Company of the same, and
Stanley is with Brigadier Pompey Elliott’s 15th Brigade, serving with
the 15th Company Field Engineers.
Like his brothers, Cliff – a distinguished looking fellow, who is neat,
as Diggers go, and careful with his presentation, just as he had been
raised – is dead keen to finish this damn war, and get home as soon as
possible. Like them all, he is proud of Australia’s accomplishments in
these parts, but a little pissed off that so often the Australians seem to be
on their Pat Malone when the heavy lifting is to be done against Fritz.
‘It was a great performance of our Australian lads to drive Fritz out
of this town of Villers Bretonneux,’ Cliff writes in his diary this evening.
‘Lately it seems always a case of the Pommies losing a position, & our
chaps holding Fritz, or having to win back what the Pommies lost.’12
And it is dangerous, make no mistake. A bloke could be killed at any
moment. Oddly, Cliff worries more about his brothers – particularly
Boo even though he is in the same Battalion – than himself, but that is
just the way it is.
‘Haven’t seen Boo since Monday night, trust he’s OK, they are not
getting the shells in the front line we are back here, & if there’s no hop
over, I think he’s pretty right, though one never knows what minute
he’ll be hit at this game.’13
The two key questions that a lot of the Diggers want answered right
now are: firstly, what will the Germans do next?; and secondly, when
will the bloody Yanks dip their bloody oars in?
You see, it seems clear that the Germans are girding their iron loins
for their next attack, which will be a big one, there can be no doubt.
Since Russia pulled out of the war after the Bolsheviks took over late
the previous year, German forces previously on the Eastern Front have
been flooding into France at the rate of 20,000 a week, and as the
Kaiserschlacht showed, Germany is eager to win the war, before the
weight of the Americans, who, in turn, are now flooding into France
at the rate of 60,000 a week, can be felt.
But while the Germans arriving are fighting, the bloody Yanks aren’t
and it is a real problem for those, like the Australians, who are holding
the line.
Typical is the view of the British officer, Captain Hubert Essame of the
8th Division, who had recently fought by the side of the Australians as
they re-took Villers-Bretonneux. His experience has convinced him that
the Australian troops are the best in the war. But great boon that they
are to the exhausted British forces, they will not be remotely enough.
‘A year had now passed since the Americans had entered the war,’
Essame would note, ‘and yet, apart from four good divisions in quiet
sectors on the French front, they had contributed virtually nothing to
the death struggle . . .’

Credit: Reprinted from Monash’s Masterpiece: The Battle of Le Hamel and the 93 Minutes that Changed the World by Peter FitzSimons. Hachette Australia, RRP: $35.00. ISDN: 9780733640087.

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Amelia Earhart bones theory "long discredited" says researcher

Short link: http://rodei.me/Earhart_Bones

By Mike Campbell - Author - Amelia Earhart: The Truth at Last

The claim that Amelia Earhart's bones were found on Nikumaroro has been long discredited and exposed as fraudulent; this idea is nothing but more hype and fake news from TIGHAR and their media toadies across the mainstream media. Further, this latest media blitz has surely been coordinated by those in Washington who do not want to see an Earhart memorial on Saipan, and such is their anger that they have activated more than the usual handful of media organizations to spread the latest TIGHAR manure across the land. The timing is too coincidental to be anything else. This new installment of the "lost bones" lie is nothing more than a thinly veiled response to the recent announcement about the plans to build the Saipan Earhart Memorial Monument.

Weasel words like "could have," "likely" and "99 percent probability" season the latest recycled TIGHAR trash, but at the bottom, it's nothing but smoke, mirrors and lies, as usual, from TIGHAR and those in the media who aid and abet their phoney schemes. I ask those who believe in real science -- not discredited fantasies like "remote viewing" -- to study the facts that Earhart researchers have compiled for nearly 60 years, and you cannot come to any other conclusion than Amelia and Fred Noonan's tragic and unnecessary deaths on Saipan.

Murderers are sent to their executions daily on the smallest fraction of the evidence presented in several books since Fred Goerner's 1966 bestseller "The Search for Amelia Earhart" solidly established the presence and deaths of Earhart and Fred Noonan on Saipan following their loss in July 1937, and inspired thousands of Americans to demand action from Congress to reveal the truth, which was thoroughly ignored. The additional mountain of evidence I present in "Amelia Earhart: The Truth at Last" and in my blog, www.EarhartTruth.com to support the Marshalls and Saipan truth brings together Goerner's work and that of several other fine researchers and leaves no other conclusion than Saipan. If TIGHAR had the tiniest molecule of this evidence to support their false claims, the Earhart "mystery," would have been declared "solved" decades ago.

The major problem with the Earhart story is that the American public has been told unceasingly for 80 years that her disappearance is a "great aviation mystery," to the point that this canard has become part of our cultural furniture, blindly accepted without question by nearly everyone. In fact, the U.S. government knows exactly what happened to the fliers and simply refuses to admit it. I will not expand on this basic truth here, however, as anyone unafraid to learn the truth can easily find it. Although the truth about the Earhart disappearance is a sacred cow in Washington, it's also an open secret, available to anyone who desires to find, learn and understand.

Mike Campbell
Jacksonville, Florida
"Amelia Earhart: The Truth at Last"

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Truth behind old sayings, words and phrases

There is an old pub in Marble Arch, London, which used to have a gallows adjacent to it.

Prisoners were taken to the gallows (after a fair trial of course!) to be hanged.

 The horse-drawn dray, carting the prisoner, was accompanied by an armed guard, who would stop the dray outside the pub and ask the prisoner if he would like ''ONE LAST DRINK''.

If he said YES, it was referred to as ONE FOR THE ROAD.

If he declined, that Prisoner was ON THE WAGON.

So there you go ...


More history....................

They used to use urine to tan animal skins, so families used to all pee in a pot and t hen once a day it was taken and sold to the tannery.

If you had to do this to survive you were "piss poor".

But worse than that were the really poor folk, who couldn't even afford to buy a pot, they "Didn't have a pot to piss in" and were the lowest of the low..


The next time you are washing your hands and complain because the water temperature isn't just how you like it, think about how things used to be.............

Here are some facts about England in the 1500s:

Most people got married in June,because they took their yearly bath in May and they still smelled pretty good by June.!!


However, since they were starting to smell, brides carried a bouquet of flowers to hide the body odour.

Hence the custom today of carrying a bouquet when getting married.


Baths consisted of a big tub filled with hot water.

The man of the house had the privilege of the nice clean water,

then all the other sons and men, then the women and finally the children.

Last of all the babies.

By then the water was so dirty you could actually lose someone in it.!

Hence the saying,

"Don't throw the baby out with the bath water!"


Houses had thatched roofs, thick straw piled high, with no wood underneath.

It was the only place for animals to get warm, so all the cats and other small animals (mice, bugs) lived in the roof.

When it rained it became slippery and sometimes the animals would slip and fall off the roof. Hence the saying "It's raining cats and dogs."  


There was nothing to stop things from falling into the house.

This posed a real problem in the bedroom,

where bugs and other droppings could mess up your nice clean bed.

Hence, a bed with big posts and a sheet hung over the top afforded some protection.

That's how canopy beds came into existence.


The floor was dirt Only the wealthy had something other than dirt.

Hence the saying, "dirt poor."

The wealthy had slate floors that would get slippery in the winter when wet, so they spread thresh (straw) on the floor to help keep their footing.

As the winter wore on they added more thresh until, when you opened the door,it would all start slipping outside.

A piece of wood was placed at the entrance.

Hence: a thresh hold. (Getting quite an education, aren't you?)


Sometimes they could obtain pork, which made them feel quite special.

When visitors came over they would hang up their bacon, to show off.

It was a sign of wealth that a man could, "Bring home the bacon."

They would cut off a little to share with guests and would all sit around talking and ''chew the fat''.  


Those with money had plates made of pewter.

Food with high acid content caused some of the lead to leach onto the food, causing lead poisoning and death.

This happened most often with tomatoes.

So for the next 400 years or so, tomatoes were considered poisonous.


Bread was divided according to status.

Workers got the burnt bottom of the loaf,

The family got the middle, and guests got the top, or ''The Upper Crust''.


Lead cups were used to drink ale or whisky.

The combination would sometimes knock the imbibers out for a couple of days. Someone walking along the road would take them for dead and prepare them for burial. They were laid out on the kitchen table for a couple of days and the family would gather around and eat and drink and wait and see if they would wake up.

Hence the custom of ''Holding a Wake''.  


England is old and small and the local folks started running out of places to bury people, so they would dig up coffins and would take the bones to a bone-house and reuse the grave.!

When reopening these coffins, 1 out of 25 coffins was found to have scratch marks on the inside and they realised they had been burying people alive. So they would tie a string on the wrist of the corpse, thread it through the coffin and up through the ground and tie it to a bell.Someone would have to sit out in the graveyard all night (the graveyard shift) to listen for the bell; thus someone could be, ''Saved by the Bell ''or was considered a ''Dead Ringer'' And that's the truth.!!


Saturday, February 24, 2018

Twenty 100-year-old Amazing Glass Plate Photographs

These are absolutely phenomenal.

Note how sharp and clear most of the photos are and these are over a 100 years old.

There aren't many old photos as good as this, remember they didn't have film or digital photo cards in those days.

Most probable is that these were glass plate images and taken thru a pinhole type camera and the opening was timed just right to get a dark enough exposure.

Developing was another tedious task during which they had to be careful not to break the glass!

Click any image to enlarge

Woodward Avenue, Detroit , Michigan, in 1917.


Atlantic City, 1910


The main street of Memphis, north of Avenue Gayoso, 1910.


Station "Louisville-Nashville," Florida , in 1910.


Forsyth Street, Jacksonville, Florida, in 1910.Love those cars.


The beach in Atlantic City, 1915.Note the men in coats and ties.


Grant Avenue after an earthquake in San Francisco in 1906.


Carts for transporting dairy Thompson, Washington , 1927.How in the world did the dairy get those horses so evenly lined up. Washington County, Wisconsin


Washington, DC, 1914. Not so "thoughty" having those horses run on a railroad tracks.

(thoughty? must have been a popular word back in the day) (note the people in the windows)


Cadillac Square, Detroit, Michigan, 1916.


Ninth Street, Washington DC, 1915.


Corner of Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street, New York 1910.


Broad Street north of Spruce Street, Philadelphia, 1905.


View of Manhattan Bridge from Brooklyn in 1909.


Fire at 55th Street, New York, 1915.


Fifth Avenue, New York, 1913.


Wabash Avenue, Chicago, 1907.


The New York Public Library, New York,1915. Didn't realize they had 4-laners in those days.


Wall Street, New York, 1911.The 2 sidewalks together are as wide as the street in this pic.


Fifth Avenue, New York, 1913.Look at those top hats!

Pass this on to someone you think would enjoy seeing these old photos...

Monday, February 5, 2018

Clive Hamilton's Silent Invasion: How China is influencing Australian politics

Hardie Grant Books has acquired world rights to Clive Hamilton's controversial book, Silent Invasion.
Publishing immediately in Australia on Friday 2nd March 2018, Silent Invasion detail evidence showing how various Chinese Communist Party agencies have sought to extend Beijing's influence in Australia for strategic and political gains. Thoroughly researched and powerfully argued, the book is a sobering examination of the mounting threats to democratic freedoms Australians have for too long taken for granted. Yes, China is important to our economic prosperity, Hamilton says; but, he encourages readers to ask, how much is our sovereignty as a nation worth?

A professor of public ethics at Charles Sturt University in Canberra, Hamilton received an Order of Australia for his contribution to public debate.  He has previously published seven books with Allen & Unwin, who were originally scheduled to publish Silent Invasion in early 2018.
Allen & Unwin abandoned publication plans late last year with Robert Gorman, Allen & Unwin chief executive officer, stating in an email to Clive "potential threats to the book and the company from possible action by Beijing" as the reason for the decision to delay the publication at least a year. Unwilling to wait, Hamilton requested the rights for the book to be returned, and looked for another publisher, only to be turned down by other publishers citing the same fear.
In order to minimise the legal risk, Hamilton rewrote the book. "I can't stop an authoritarian foreign power using vexatious litigation by its proxies to suppress a book criticising it," Hamilton said. "Thank God there is one publisher in Australia willing to stand up for free speech."
The abandonment of Hamilton's book and the reluctance of other Australian publishers to take it up brings into focus urgent questions about academic freedom and free speech in Australia.
"I'm not aware of any other instance in Australian history where a foreign power has stopped publication of a book that criticises it," Hamilton said. "The reason three publishers refused to publish this book is the very reason the book needs to be published."
Hardie Grant chief executive officer, Sandy Grant is no stranger to this situation, having successfully fought the British government's attempt to ban the publication of the 1987 book Spycatcher.
Grant said, "Hardie Grant was clear Silent Invasion needed to be published. This is substantive research bringing to light a concerted effort by the Chinese Communist Party to gain influence in a covert manner. Having gone through Spycatcher, it's my experience that governments will try to prevent things from getting into the public domain that may damage their perceived interests.  We value freedom of speech ahead of those interests."

Early Praise for Silent Invasion:

"Anyone keen to understand how China draws other countries into its sphere of influence should start with Silent Invasion. This is an important book for the future of Australia. But tug on the threads of China's influence networks in Australia and its global network of influence operations starts to unravel."
Professor John Fitzgerald, author of Big White Lie: Chinese Australians in White Australia
Title: Silent Invasion: China's Influence in Australia
Author: Clive Hamilton
Formats: paperback, ebook
Publication Date: 2 March 2018
RRP: AU$34.99/ NZ $39.99

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

THE LEBS: A confronting new novel from SWEATSHOP director Michael Mohammed Ahmad

Michael Mohammed Ahmad is an Arab-Australian writer, editor, teacher and community arts worker and the founder and director of Sweatshop, a literacy movement in Western Sydney devoted to empowering culturally and linguistically diverse artists through creative writing.

This March, Hachette Australia is thrilled to be releasing a new fictional work from him, titled THE LEBS.

A novel that is in turns confronting, heartbreaking and illuminating, THE LEBS is in the vein of Maxine Beneba Clarke's FOREIGN SOIL and Peter Polites' DOWN THE HUME, voices from diverse backgrounds, telling the untold stories of their generation.

THE LEBS is based on Mohammed's own experiences as a young Arab-Australian Muslim from Western Sydney who attended the notorious Punchbowl Boys High School, the primary setting of the novel.  THE LEBS takes us inside the mind of Bani, a young man coming to terms with his place in a world of hostility and hopelessness – with the dream of having so much more.

This is the latest installment in a wave of powerful new novels and literary voices from minority Australian writers, Michael Mohammed Ahmad offers new and unique insights into a largely misunderstood and poorly represented new Australian community.

Mohammed's essays and short stories have appeared in the Sydney Review of Books, The Guardian, Heat, Seizure, The Lifted Brow, The Australian and Coming of Age: Australian Muslim Stories. His debut novel, THE TRIBE, received a 2015 Sydney Morning Herald Best Young Australian Novelists of the Year Award. Mohammed also adapted THE TRIBE for the stage with Urban Theatre Projects in 2015, which received the 2016 FBi Smac Award for Best On-Stage Production. Mohammed received his Doctorate of Creative Arts at Western Sydney University in 2017.

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