Socialist Worker


Issue No. 2475

Warmongers look for fresh excuses to wreak mayhem

It would be a bitter irony if the Tories were able to force and win a vote in parliament on bombing Syria. They are trying to hijack the groundswell of sympathy and active solidarity for refugees fleeing war and persecution in the Middle East.

Two years ago David Cameron wanted to bomb the dictator Bashar al-Assad. Now he wants to bomb those fighting Assad.

There is already a free-for-all in Syria with Turkey bombing the Kurds, the US bombing Isis and now Russia bombing all opposition to the regime. We should oppose all attempts to involve British forces in more bombing.

Home secretary Theresa May made clear at the Tory conference last week that the Tories place no value on human life.

May aims to further strengthen border controls and to deport asylum seekers. Coupled with plans to bomb Syria, this is akin to locking people in a burning room then hosing it down with petrol.

Neil McAlisterBolton

The language the media use about Russia these days is straight out of a Cold War B-movie. 

“Nato should hold nuclear war games as threat from Russia intensifies” thundered a recent Daily Mail newspaper headline. 

The election of Jeremy Corbyn to the Labour leadership has made the abolition of Trident nuclear weapons a possibility. To counter this the right are resurrecting the image of the Russian bogeyman they used during the Cold War.

They say we need weapons of mass destruction to protect us from Russian aggression. 

Stand by for more Russian villains in popular culture. In reality our main enemy is at home.

The Tories plan to squander £100 billion on an abomination like Trident while they say there’s no money for welfare.

That doesn’t mean we become cheerleaders for Putin and the corrupt Russian ruling class. But we do tell our own corrupt rulers where they can shove Trident. 

Sasha SimicEast London

Collecting at work for refugees

Our Unison union branch collected over £2,000 for refugees in our workplaces at Tower Hamlets council, east London, last Thursday.

We made a big splash with reps and activists distributing flyers, then groups going round in union bibs with buckets.

Most people contributed and many thanked us for organising it. While some workers were less receptive, the collection created an atmosphere of sympathy and solidarity. 

Diana SwinglerConvenor Tower Hamlets Unison

It's tweet hypocrisy

Goldsmiths student union officer Bahar Mustafa has been summoned to court to face “malicious communication charges.”

In response to online harassment, she allegedly tweeted #killallwhitemen”. She later called the hashtag an in-joke.

Sun columnist Katie Hopkins wasn’t charged when she called for using “gunboats” on migrants. Nor was Jeremy Clarkson for saying he would shoot striking workers.

The tweet’s social impact is determined by far more than its words. It’s about material conditions, such as oppression shored up by the ruling class.

The government, police and media don’t whip up hatred against “white men”.

Bahar’s tweet was ill-judged and divisive. We disagree with the politics behind it. But we should oppose the absurd charges.


We won’t let NUS stab Muslims in the back

National Union of Students (NUS) president Megan Dunn announced that NUS will stop working with civil rights group Cage against the Prevent strategy.

This is a big attack on the NUS fighting against a racist policy that tries to silence Muslim students.   

Dunn has made this decision without taking into account the impact it will have on Muslim students and their resistance to being criminalised.

Many students and their representatives are angered by her apologetic responses to government attacks on student campaigns which challenge Prevent.

Disassociating NUS from Cage only strengthens the Tories’ Islamophobic plans.

We will not accept decisions made in favour of the establishment’s interests over students’ interests.

Saba ShirazBirkbeck Black Students’ Officer

Together we can be stronger

As a new member of the Socialist Workers Party, it was a pleasure and a source of great optimism to see so many people protesting at the Tory party conference.

I helped run a stall during the TUC march on Sunday.

I stood with comrades from all parts of Britain at many of the other People’s Assembly demonstrations during the week. In the past I was often a lone demonstrator against the excesses of capitalism and the oppression of working people.

Being a member of a group dedicated to building mass movements has given me renewed energy about the possibility of changing society.

Mark BemManchester

Corbyn helped the National Gallery strike win

The settlement of the strike at the National Gallery is a great victory. Let’s hope for many more of them. 

Jeremy Corbyn’s election as Labour leader is, I’m certain, the cause. John McDonnell said at Labour’s conference that the party would now back all strikes.

The two strong arms of the labour movement have joined up. More victories to come.

Elijah Travenon Facebook

I left Healey’s Labour Party

I read with interest your obituary of Denis Healey (Socialist Worker, 10 October 2015). I left Labour when he won the deputy leadership over Tony Benn.

David Seddonon Twitter

A self-serving Duncan Smith

You report protesters confronting Iain Duncan Smith in a motorway service station. Nice!

But Duncan Smith, actually in a service station? Did he mistake it for a place to pick up new servants?

Louise Rawon Twitter

Humble pie baked for racists

Sometimes apparently tangential events speak powerfully. One such is the victory of a Muslim woman on Britain’s most popular TV programme—Great British Bake Off.

That Nadiya’s win was screened the day after Theresa May’s speech against migrants, and on the day Cameron stoked Islamophobia, was truly the icing on the cake. 

This won’t be lost on millions of people who oppose racism.

Alan KennyEast London

Outstanding in Manchester

It was an outstanding night at the cathedral in Manchester where Jeremy Corbyn spoke on Monday of last week.

This is what the Tories fear. This is why they attack him and anyone who supports him.

Brenda Pooleon Facebook

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Article information

Tue 13 Oct 2015, 15:54 BST
Issue No. 2475
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