Ashley Johnston’s recruitment to fight with Kurds in Syria

“In the weeks leading up to and during his deployment, Johnston and Kadandir developed a bond over Facebook, exchanging jokes and emojis.”

Correspondence published for the first time shows how Johnston was recruited to fight Islamic State in Syria.



Leyonhjelm and gun lobby hijack senate inquiry

The gun violence inquiry has been co-opted by lobbyists led by Senator David Leyonhjelm to stall firearm controls.


Reclaim Australia protests threaten more division

Ugly clashes at Reclaim Australia rallies around the country may have only served to cement a feeling of ‘us’ and ‘them’.


Taxation, inequality and the wealth gap

“Between 1975 and 2014, the income share of the top 1 per cent of Australians has doubled, and that of the top 0.1 per cent has tripled.”

The tax debate has raised the ongoing issue of Australia's underlying inequality.


Universities Australia, Clean Energy Council’s lobbying lessons

It’s a high-stakes gamble for industry groups to support unpopular government policy if the senate objects, as the experience of university chiefs shows.


Final touches close in Iran nuclear deal

Bishop and Zarif talks; Greek bailout beyond even Putin; Jokowi holds hopes for Chan and Sukumaran.

The big story. Every day. Listen now.

7am is a daily news podcast from Schwartz Media. Every day it tells you what you need to know: who's involved, what it means and why it matters. It's news with narrative, every weekday. Returning January 24.

Follow 7am wherever you get your podcasts.



Guy Rundle
Compulsory superannuation and the social contract

“Of the prosperous OECD countries, we are one of the least innovative, locked into old arrangements that are proving increasingly inadequate to a better life.”


Paul Bongiorno
Big business, economic reforms and fair taxation

“Who would have thought that a joint statement from nine of Australia’s peak business groups would attack a political leader for an “almost continuing focus on budget fairness”?”


Spilling ink on Malcolm

Diarist-at-large Richard Ackland flys about the nation.

Letters, Cartoon & Editorial



Taskforce needs broader brief to tackle ice epidemic


Accident in pilot training

As an RAAF pilot trainee at Point Cook in 1960 I witnessed the fatal accident referred to by Martin McKenzie-Murray in his “Danger and the minds of pilots” article on pilot training …

Breaking the silence

In the 1970s I was approached by two pilots wanting to set up counselling services for pilots in TAA. They explained the sometimes chaotic lives of pilots, their schedules, relationships and sometimes dangerous …

Read More


Clive James
Sentenced to Life

The Lifted Brow, Issue 25

A. S. Patrić
Black Rock White City



pplkpr app adds friends to the quantified self

Emotional analytic apps to let your smartphone choose the company you keep.


Long-term strategy needed for those surviving cancer

The healthcare needs of Australian cancer survivors don’t disappear when their lifesaving treatment ends.


Blazing paddles: Jessica Fox, 20, canoeist

Jessica Fox, C-1 and K-1 world champion and 2012 Olympic silver medallist, talks about taking on the rapids.

The Quiz

1. Currently banned for drug use, four-time Olympic swimming medallist Park Tae-hwan competed for which country?
2. Marxist revolutionary Leon Trotsky was assassinated in which country?
3. Which 1975 film features the line, “You’re gonna need a bigger boat”? (Bonus point for naming who delivered the line and the film’s director.)
4. In what year did same-sex marriage become legal in New Zealand?
5. Which common drug is also known as acetylsalicylic acid?
6. In which city would you visit Michelangelo’s statue of David?
7. Deloitte, PwC, Ernst & Young and KPMG are all major firms in what field?
8. How many legs does a spider have?
9. Cape Horn is the southernmost headland of South America. It lies in which country?
10. What is considered the traditional colour of Islam?

Click through for answers.



“Any other government, I suspect, would quickly succumb to the cries of the human rights lawyers and others.”

– Tony AbbottThe prime minister boasts his proud record of human rights abuse in offshore detention centres. His is the only government you can really trust to ignore sexual abuse, refuse clean water and medication, slander aid workers and celebrate the breaching of international treaties.


“He had such soft hands, and those eyes... wow.”

– Karuna HendersonThe 19-year-old Canberran tells The Australian Women’s Weekly about meeting Prince Harry on his Australian tour. Little does she know all soldiers have soft hands.


“It was 50-60 years ago people said that the Irish Catholics or the Catholics were trying to take over the joint — and that wasn’t true either.”

– Bill ShortenThe opposition leader attempts to allay fears Sharia law might be forced on Australia, conveniently forgetting the Catholic make-up of the Abbott frontbench.


“I don’t remember [writing] it but I don’t give a fuck if I did.”

– David LeyonhjelmThe Liberal Democrats senator appears not to apologise for referring to Julia Gillard as a “mangy dog”. In doing so, he trivialised the serious issues of carbon taxation and mange.


“I was genuine about it and quite happy to have given a new leader a chance to lead us into the election if I was an electoral liability.”

– Campbell NewmanThe former Queensland premier claims he would have given someone else the chance to lead his party to a historic single-term loss at the last election “if” he were a liability.


“That’s the challenge, isn’t it? We can’t put resources into this indefinitely.”

– Duncan SwanThe Biosecurity Queensland officer explains the difficult staffing decisions being made after a dozen agents spent a week looking for a South American boa constrictor accidentally released into bushland by Gold Coast police.