Socialist Worker

We’re right to build the anti-war movement, despite right’s attack

by Judith Orr
Issue No. 2484

The Stop the War march in London last Saturday

The Stop the War march in London last Saturday (Pic: Neil Terry)


The Stop the War Coalition (STWC) faced an unprecedented onslaught from politicians and parts of the press over the past week.

But Lindsey German from STWC told Saturday’s rally, “We won’t be apologising for anything. What we said has been proved right and our government has been proved wrong.

“We did the right thing in the past and will continue doing it.”

A Christmas fundraising dinner organised by STWC in London became the focus for a media frenzy.

Some right wing Labour MPs put pressure on Jeremy Corbyn not to attend. They wanted him to disown the organisation that he had been chair of until he won the Labour leadership election.

They were angry at the protests against those MPs who had voted to support David Cameron in the vote to bomb Syria.

Thousands of protesters have marched in London and in other towns and cities to oppose the bombing of Syria. Labour MPs have received hundreds of emails and anti-war campaigners have picketed MPs’ surgeries.

Furore

But Corbyn defied the furore and went to the dinner. He made a strong speech defending the record of the anti-war movement.

To cheers and applause from activists there he said he was “proud to be associated with the Stop the War Coalition” and that “branding it as somehow illegitimate is an attempt to close down democratic debate and campaigning.”

At the same time as STWC was coming under attack from the right some on the left joined in criticisms. STWC was accused of not denouncing dictator Bashar al-Assad’s regime in Syria, or the bombing by Assad’s ally Russia.

Some supporters within what is a wide coalition of different activists take differing views. But STWC has publicly stated it does not support Assad or Russia’s bombing.

Socialist Worker opposes all foreign intervention in Syria whether by the US, Britain or Russia.

We have stood with those fighting in Syria’s popular revolution against Assad’s regime.

Assad is responsible for the deaths of over a quarter of a million Syrian people struggling for freedom and democracy.


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