Socialist Worker

LETTERS: It’s time to get organised after the Stand Up To Racism conference

Issue No. 2526

Marion, Hannah and Francoise at the Stand Up to Racism conference

Marion, Hannah and Francoise at the Stand Up to Racism conference


Racist attacks have increased across Europe since the European Union (EU) referendum.

But the scapegoating of migrants and refugees by politicians and by the media has been happening for decades.

It is significant that racism is most prominent in areas with fewer migrants and refugees.

The Stand Up To Racism conference was important in providing people with the confidence to oppose the drive to make racism mainstream.

Marion O’Malley, North London

We need unity in action to combat the rise of the far right across Europe. That was the message to take away from the Stand Up To Racism conference.

The rise of the far right is being fuelled by politicians such as Ukip’s Nigel Farage and backed by the mainstream media.

We need to organise Stand Up To Racism groups in our schools as a matter of urgency.

Hannah, East London

I attended the Stand Up To Racism conference on behalf of the East London Teachers Association (NUT).

It showed me how important it is carry on the fight against the government’s divisive agenda as well the rise of fascism sweeping across Europe.

With collective action we can make a big difference.

Francoise, East London


Hungary 1956 shatters myth we shall soon rightly be celebrating the sixtieth anniversary of the Hungarian Revolution (see pages 14 and 15). We should remember that it was not just a glorious example of workers’ resistance and a threat to Stalinism.  It also shattered the lie peddled by the West that Stalinism was what socialism looked like. Rulers in both Eastern Europe and the West were—and are—threatened by the power that 1956 in Hungary demonstrated. We should recall this struggle with great pride, fight again and fight even better next time. Marian Rees  West London Private eye anti rulers?  Zekria Ibrahimi is of course right (Socialist Worker, 11 October) that Private Eye is neither of nor on the left, and quite happy to lay into the Socialist Workers Party among others. But it’s not straightforwardly  pro-establishment.  Its willingness to investigate and expose scandals makes it often a thorn in the establishment’s side.  Ben Drake York Be for Labour in Scotland  Articles in Socialist Worker appear to write off Labour in Scotland and cheer the Scottish National Party.  This is very strange for a socialist newspaper.  Labour, under Jeremy Corbyn, is the only major party to oppose Tory austerity and to fight for workers’ rights.  Stewart Cook  Falkirk Change going to come? Prime Minister  Theresa May spoke at the Tory conference repeatedly of “a change to come”. She was echoing the words of Sam Cooke’s well known song which was inspired by the US Civil Rights movement. It is a masterpiece that has nothing in common May’s politics. John Appleyard  Liversedge

Hungary 1956 shatters myth

We shall soon rightly be celebrating the sixtieth anniversary of the Hungarian Revolution.

We should remember that it was not just a glorious example of workers’ resistance and a threat to Stalinism. It also shattered the lie peddled by the West that Stalinism was what socialism looked like.

Rulers in both Eastern Europe and the West were—and are—threatened by the power that 1956 in Hungary demonstrated. We should recall this struggle with great pride, fight again and fight even better next time.

Marian Rees, West London


Private eye anti rulers?

Zekria Ibrahimi is of course right (Letters, 4 October) that Private Eye is neither of nor on the left, and quite happy to lay into the Socialist Workers Party among others.

But it’s not straightforwardly pro-establishment. Its willingness to investigate and expose scandals makes it often a thorn in the establishment’s side.

Ben Drake, York


Be for Labour in Scotland

Articles in Socialist Worker appear to write off Labour in Scotland and cheer the Scottish National Party. This is very strange for a socialist newspaper.

Labour, under Jeremy Corbyn, is the only major party to oppose Tory austerity and to fight for workers’ rights.

Stewart Cook, Falkirk


May change be going to come?

Prime Minister Theresa May spoke at the Tory conference repeatedly of “a change to come”.

She was echoing the words of Sam Cooke’s well known song which was inspired by the US Civil Rights movement.

It is a masterpiece that has nothing in common May’s politics.

John Appleyard, Liversedge


There were no borders on Cable Street

your feature on the Battle of Cable Street (Socialist Worker, 5 October) pointed out that the anti-fascist slogan “They Shall Not Pass” was a translation from the Spanish workers keeping Francisco Franco out of Madrid.

Yet this is not the only international connection.

France had already seen anti-fascist agitation spill over into the biggest wave of strikes and occupations ever to hit the country.

Meanwhile, US workers in the tyre and car plants were perfecting “sit-down strikes”—factory occupations—which took off at the end of 1936.

This was all in the midst of the depression, and as the Nazis gained a stronghold in Germany.

Working class struggle in 1936 was not confined by the boundaries of nation states.

John Shemeld, Nottingham

It was disgusting to see Leeds MP Rachel Reeves’ comments about the city being a “tinderbox” of racism. Leeds has a proud history of fighting racism.

Just before the Battle of Cable Street, on 27 Sept 1936, fascist leader Oswald Mosley visited Leeds.

Some 1,000 fascists were met by a crowd of 30,000 anti-fascists who drove Mosley out of town.

Reeves should join the Leeds Stand Up To Racism group instead of whipping up racism.

Steve Johnston, Leeds


Defend Jackie Walker —without conditions

I was disappointed Socialist Worker said Jackie Walker, of Momentum, was “foolish and incorrect” in comments she made at a Jewish Labour Movement (JLM) meeting (Socialist Worker, 4 October).

She was suspended from membership of the Labour Party.

On the issue of a definition of antisemitism, the comment that she had not heard a “definition she could work with” was the definition that the JLM speaker gave. She does of course understand antisemitism.

The attack on Jackie is part of the witch hunt that the Labour right are attempting to use against Corbyn supporters. It is sad that Momentum nationally caved in.

Jackie has wholehearted support from Momentum activists. Socialist Worker should stand against the witch hunt too.

Jon Flaig, Kent


We say nae to a Nazi gig

fascist band Bound for Glory were due to fly into Scotland this week to peddle their Nazism. But there are reports that campaigning has forced the event’s cancellation.

We remain watchful. Unite Against Fascism (UAF) and others spoke to music venues in Edinburgh and Falkirk, to ask them to check bookings.

We contacted officials in both cities to say there would be a mass protest against any such filth.

UAF Scotland has heard that the sound company booked to do the event, after realising they had been duped, cancelled their booking.

UAF Scotland will be vigilant in case fascists cobble together an event in an effort to save face.

Stephen McBroom, Edinburgh


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