After the horrific tragedies of the previous two years, Australians everywhere had little tolerance left for violence of any kind. Such was this mood throughout the land that tens of thousands of people marched in protest against an impending war in Iraq. Demonstrations of these kind had not been seen here since the Vietnam protest of the 70’s.

Elsewhere, we looked for inspiration from our sporting teams. Aussies everywhere cheered as the underdog Penrith Panthers defeated the glamour team from Bondi, the Roosters. And we held our breath as our national Rugby Union team, The Wallabies, took the might of the English down to the last seconds of the World Cup final….

2003 also saw:

– The Seaside Artists Gallery opens the Redcliffe Arcade;

– Tens of Thousands of Australians march in protests against the impending war against Iraq. Australia will later send 2000 military personnel to the conflict;

– Queensland Chief Magistrate Di Fingleton is jailed for six months for intimidating a witness. The charge is later overturned by the High Court;

– Pauline Hanson and David Ettridge are sentenced to 3 years jail for electoral fraud. Their convictions are later set aside by the Qld Court of Appeals;

– After revelations of how he handled a child sex case during his time as Brisbane’s Anglican Archbishop, Governor General Peter Hollingworth resigns. Retired Army Major General Michael Jeffrey takes his place;

– Simon Crean becomes the first Labor leader to be dumped before competing in an election. Mark Latham is elected to the position after defeating Kim Beazley by two caucus votes;

– Shane Warne tests positive to banned substance and is suspended from cricket for a year. He blamed a diet pill given to him by his Mum;

– The Brisbane Lions become the first AFL side since the 1920’s to win 3 premierships in a row, again defeating the loathed Collingwood Magpies, this time by 50 points;

– The Penrith Panthers upset the Sydney Roosters in the NRL Grand Final, to the delight of everyone who isn’t a Roosters fan;

– Australia host the Rugby World Cup, with the Wallabies denied glory in the final by a last minute Jonny Wilkinson field goal;

– After being on the run since the United States led invasion of Iraq, Saddam Hussein is captured by US forces and taken into allied custody;

– Space shuttle Columbia tragically explodes upon re-entry, killing all seven astronauts aboard;

– After a recall vote in California ousts Gray Davis, Arnold Schwarzenegger aka “the Governator” is elected to take his place;

– Hubble Telescope photographs the oldest known planet in the universe: nicknamed Methusalah, it is estimated to be 12.7 billion years old;

Lost in Translation, Mystic River, Master & Commander: The Far Side of the World, Kill Bill Vol.1, City of God and Swimming Upstream (with an uncredited cameo from a certain legal student) are released

Deaths: June Carter Cash (15 May), Gregory Peck (12 June), Katharine Hepburn (29 June), Gregory Hines (9 August), Johnny Cash (12 September), Elia Kazan (28 September), Slim Dusty (29 September)