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Socialist Worker

Issue: 1928

Dated: 20 Nov 2004

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Mass murder not liberation

THE "LIBERATION" of Fallujah has been an indiscriminate killing spree by US forces. Wounded prisoners have been executed in cold blood, while fleeing civilians have been shot dead.

International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other


New Labour tells Kurds to return to torture or death

SCHOOL CHILDREN in Portsmouth are showing the humanity which the governent so patently lacks.

Police ‘victory’ sends a chilling message

EIGHT POLICE officers who were suspended after an inquest returned a verdict of unlawful killing in the case of a black man were reinstated last week.

Babar Ahmad’s hearing this week

BABAR AHMAD’S extradition hearing to the US on terrorism charges was to start this Thursday, 18 November, at Bow Street magistrates court in London. Mrs Ahmad, Babar’s wife, spoke to Socialist Worker before the hearing:

Military Families Against the War

Reg Keys, Theresa Evans, Christine Robinson and and Rose Gentle helped launch Military Families Against the War last week. They, and other soldiers’ relatives, laid a wreath at 10 Downing Street.

In brief

Slur against the Guantanamo men TONY BLAIR has accused former detainees at the US’s Guantanamo Bay camp of endangering British "security".

Who says?

"There have been no civilian casualties." Iraq’s "prime minister"

In brief

Relatives speak out in Fife THE DEATHS of British soldiers in the Black Watch in Iraq are having a deep impact on people in the area they come from in Scotland.

They came, they saw, they slaughtered

"WE HAVE liberated the city of Fallujah," crowed General John Abizaid of US Central Command last Sunday.

The Blair Kid Project

WE HAD to put up with a double-barrelled dose of nausea this week with Michael Howard appearing to talk welfare state politics and Tony Blair invading Hackney to claim New Labour was bringing in childcare Utopia.

It’s business as usual for our universities

IF YOU’VE had difficulty making sense of the government’s education policy then Charles Clarke, the cabinet minister responsible, has cleared up any misunderstanding. The whole thing must be geared to the needs of globalised big business, he said in a speech this Monday.

Anti-war art going global

LEON KUHN, whose latest work is shown here, has been a political artist and cartoonist since the 1970s

‘We see through their deal’

AROUND 1,000 radiographers showed their opposition to Agenda for Change—the government’s sweeping changes to pay and conditions across the NHS—in central London last Saturday.


RESPECT IN Lambeth and Southwark, south London, hosted a meeting on civil liberties last week. Around 70 people attended, including young Muslims from Stockwell mosque.

More national action needed after strike success

THE STRIKE by hundreds of thousands of civil service workers in the PCS union on 5 November against job cuts and attacks on pensions and sick pay was incredibly successful. Far more people struck than the government anticipated.

In brief

Threats made to funeral workers NEARLY 750 workers employed by the Co-Op’s CWS Funeralcare struck for 24 hours on Friday of last week to try to improve a 3.5 percent pay offer.

Calls for strike ballot over school privatisation plan

MEMBERS OF all the unions at Glenbrook Primary School in Lambeth, south London, have voted unanimously for a ballot for strike action against plans to turn it into a city academy for five to 19 year olds.

Even Scrooge didn’t rob us at New Year too

THOUSANDS OF Post Office workers in London are about to start a strike ballot that could halt mail deliveries over Christmas.

Construction Workers

LAING O’ROURKE construction workers at the Channel Tunnel site, King’s Cross, were forced to sit in again on Wednesday of last week as management reneged on a commitment to recognise the GMB union.

Car workers

WORKERS AT Jaguar Browns Lane in Coventry are gearing up for a demonstration on Saturday of next week against the loss of over 1,000 jobs at the car plant.

Unison election

Jon Rogers’ campaign for Unison general secretary has received a boost with the votes of Oxford Health branch and Oxford City branch to nominate him.

Lib Dem assault on national agreement

THE DISPUTE between Liverpool council and the Unison union has escalated, with the council withdrawing from a national agreement over facility time for shop stewards.

Vanunu defies new attacks

THIRTY HEAVILY armed Israeli police last week invaded the Anglican cathedral compound in Jerusalem where Mordechai Vanunu, the Israeli nuclear whistleblower, was granted sanctuary in April of this year. He was dragged before an Israeli magistrate and faced a day of interrogation.

The heavy price paid by the whistleblower

‘In the 21st century, people all over the world are beginning to acknowledge and appreciate the importance of the whistleblower.


Latest act in a bitter history of imperialism

THIS IS the latest phase of a centuries-old history of imperialism. And it is a directly colonial history which is still far from ended.

Islamophobic backlash follows murder

On Tuesday 2 November Theo van Gogh, a provocative right wing columnist and film-maker, was murdered in Amsterdam. His killer was a 26 year old man from a Moroccan background. The murder has led to a vicious racist backlash.

South Korea

The biggest workers’ rally in South Korea since 1997 took place on Sunday. Slogans included "An end to discrimination against temporary workers", "No to the Korea-Japan free trade area" and "For the withdrawal of Korean troops from Iraq". The rally was a launchpad for an indefinite strike by public sector workers to defend union rights in the face of repression by the government.

Still waiting for the ‘big battle’

THE GOVERNMENT made concessions over the issue of fuel prices, which the strike had focused on. This retreat shows they were scared of us.


God and the Bush victory

IN MONDAY’S Guardian Gary Younge attacked the ineptitude of the "liberal left" in Europe when confronted with religious faith, whether among evangelical Christians in the United States or Muslims in Europe:


It is time to battle the corporate media

What is good journalism? Good journalism is truth telling. It is not bowing to manipulation and deception. It is looking behind facades, pushing back screens, lifting rocks.

...£79,050 and rising

WE HAVE passed the halfway mark to our target of £150,000, but there is still a way to go.

How John Kerry let the Republicans back in

The election of 2004 is now history. In a stunning victory, Republican George W Bush prevailed handily over his Democratic opponent, Senator John Kerry.

Is your MP signed up to dump Blair?

A CAMPAIGN to hold Tony Blair to account for the war on Iraq is gathering steam with the finalising of a parliamentary motion to "impeach" the prime minister.

Harry Wicks: he kept the red flag flying

nowadays most people recognise that Stalin’s rule in Russia was a perversion of the very name of socialism. But for many years those on the left who spoke out against Stalin were few in number and often persecuted.

Can we stop global warming?

NEW LABOUR has discovered an ingenious method for dealing with climate change—increasing the amount of greenhouse gases Britain can produce.

‘Nature will take its revenge on us’

Concern about humanity’s destruction of the environment is commonly seen as a recent worry. But for the 19th century socialist thinkers Karl Marx and Frederick Engels the environment was a major part of their theory.


Can you tell your friends from your enemies?

A FEROCIOUS murder, seemingly driven by racial hatred, is the background to this film about teenage life below the poverty line.

There’s nothing like a witch hunt to keep you in control

The Crucible

In brief

Comme une Image

What We Think

Other Categories

Yasser Arafat (1929 - 2004): the gun and the olive branch

Yasser Arafat, who died on Thursday of last week, dominated the Palestinian struggle ever since his emergence as head of the national liberation movement in the late 1960s.

David Spencer 1949 - 2004

MEMBERS OF the Socialist Workers Party (SWP) in Birmingham and around the country were deeply shocked to learn of the death of Dave Spencer.

War as a video game

The mainstream media have covered the devastating US assault on Fallujah as if it were a video game, using cartoonish graphics to depict attacks which have cost hundreds of lives.


Wednesday 24 November The Wall Must Fall—lobby parliament, 3pm. Public meeting, 7pm, Room 9, House of Commons.


JOHN NEWSINGER, author of Orwell’s Politics and British Counterinsurgency, will be in Bookmarks, the socialist bookshop, to talk about his latest book, Rebel City: Larkin, Connolly and the Dublin Labour Movement (Merlin, £14.95).

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