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Socialist Worker


Issue: 1960

Dated: 16 Jul 2005




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‘This is about Iraq, Mr Blair’ — father of soldier killed in Iraq speaks out

Peter Brierley, who lost his son Shaun in Iraq in 2003, spoke to Socialist Worker after addressing a 1,000-strong vigil organised by the Stop the War Coalition on the Saturday after the London bombings:


International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other

News

Marxism 2005: a thirst for ideas

From across Britain and from Europe they came in their hundreds and then their thousands to the Marxism 2005 event.

Salma Yaqoob: After the bombings, let us remember

Tony Blair would have us believe that the horrific bombings perpetrated against the people of London last week had nothing to do with the foreign policy of his government post 9/11.

Back this protest against deportations to Zimbabwe

Zimbabweans protesting at the British government’s decision to deport refugees have called a major protest for Thursday 4 August.

Firefighters ballot against Suffolk spending cuts

The Fire Brigades Union (FBU) is questioning Suffolk County Council’s claims that it is focusing more attention on fire prevention work. The union says Suffolk’s spending on community fire service has gone into reverse since 2002.

Civil service workers gear up for crucial battle

Civil service workers in the PCS union are facing a crucial few months in their battle for jobs and pensions.

Labour rounds on rebel Sunderland councillors

In Sunderland two Labour councillors are facing disciplinary action for giving evidence to the House of Commons Council Housing group about the case of Sunderland Housing Group.

Coventry journalists aim to make low pay history

Journalists in the NUJ union at Coventry Newspapers struck on Thursday and Friday of last week.

Coventry council staff to rally against single status

Coventry council workers are organising a rally on Saturday 23 July to publicise and discuss their dispute with the city council over its imposition of a "single status" pay and conditions deal.

Durham Miners’ Gala

A magnificent 50,000 people attended this year’s Durham Miners’ Gala — the biggest turnout for 40 years.

Casino workers win better deal from Stanley Leisure

The first ever vote for strike action by casino workers in Britain has resulted in an improved pay offer of 3.5 percent or £600, whichever is the greater.

Northampton post workers celebrate a crucial victory

Around 1,500 postal workers in Northampton have won a tremendous victory which points the way for others to fight back.

Reports round-up

Rising tide to stop academies The campaign against Newcastle council’s proposals to establish a city academy and close West Gate Community College is being stepped up following a public meeting last week.

A cycle of war and despair

The horrific cycle of bitterness, despair and violence that has brought so much destruction in the Middle East has found its way to this country with the slaughter of over 50 innocent people last week.

Becontree by-election: this is how to defeat the Nazi BNP

The fascist British National Party (BNP) suffered a major setback on Thursday night when it was comprehensively defeated in a council by-election in Barking, east London.

Walkout at Rolls Royce over victimisation of union convenor

A major trial of strength which will affect the position of trade union reps across industry is underway at Rolls Royce’s Bristol plant where the convenor of one of the best organised sections, Jerry Hicks, faces disciplinary charges that could see him sacked.

Vigil sees Londoners standing together against war and racism

White, Asian and black people united together in commemoration of those who died in the London bomb attacks, and against war and Islamophobia on Sunday 17 July.

Beeston unites for peace in wake of London bombings

At the start of last week Leeds Stop the War Coalition decided to call a vigil that Thusday for victims of the 7 July London bombings.

Respect Leytonstone ward by-election result

Waltham Forest Respect was delighted to receive nearly 15 percent of the vote in the Leytonstone ward by-election on Thursday 14 July. We came a strong third, well ahead of the Tories and the Greens, whose votes collapsed. We only had four weeks to build our campaign, and the lessons from the doorstep are clear — where we were able to canvas we could quite easily turn people towards Respect as a clear alternative to the inadequate policies of our Labour/Lib Dem council. The timescale between now and the borough wide council elections in May is obviously far longer, so our campaign effectively starts now! We are planning on holding meetings on pressing issues such as managing Olympic inves

Ross Pritchard Memorial Fund essay competition

The Ross Pritchard Memorial Fund was established to commemorate the life of one of the Graphical Paper & Media Union’s best known rank and file members – Ross Pritchard.

Rolls Royce strike over sacking of Jerry Hicks

The entire manual workforce at Rolls Royce’s Patchway site in Bristol walked out this morning (Thursday, 21 July) following the sacking of their deputy plant convenor, Jerry Hicks.


International

Australians on the offensive to stop anti-union laws

More than 300,000 workers protested in towns and cities across Australia recently against proposed anti-union laws.

The South African revolt against poverty

Around 200,000 South African local government workers struck for a day on Tuesday over pay.

The cost of China’s booming economy

At least 22 miners died and 60 others were missing after a gas explosion ripped through a coal mine in northwest China’s Xinjiang region on Monday.


Comment

Glimpsing a better world at the G8 protests

Britain over the past fortnight has gone through in a highly concentrated form the experience of the movement against global capitalism. Our movement went through the protests in Seattle in November 1999 through the attacks on New York and Washington on 11 September 2001 to the great anti-war marches.


Features

Sickness of healthcare across the whole world

Healthcare has become a huge global industry with an annual turnover in excess of $3 trillion and a workforce upwards of 35 million worldwide, plus millions more in linked services and occupations.

Afghanistan: the myth of liberation

What is life like in Afghanistan?

Brown’s ‘miracle’ runs into trouble

Gordon Brown is feted to the skies for his supposedly adroit management of the British economy. Even his most hardened critics—like Tony Blair—grit their teeth and claim Brown is the "most successful chancellor for 100 years".

Tariq Ali on politics and the bombs

Dear friends, we meet in sad times. Before I start talking about the subject of this evening’s meeting, I think it’s important to speak a few words about what we’re living through at the moment.

Scaling the fence that protected the Gleneagles elite

The march by more than 10,000 people against the G8 summit being held in Gleneagles Hotel last Wednesday was the culmination of five days of protest against the rulers of the world.

School students walk out against war and poverty

Around 200 school students from across London walked out of their schools in protest at the G8 meeting.

George Galloway: London bomb atrocities are the bitter fruit of Western policies in the Middle East

No one can condone the violence aimed at working people going about their daily lives in London last Thursday. They have not been a party to, nor are they responsible for, the decisions of their government.

Newspapers fan the flames of hate

"I'm not racist, but..." Everyone, at some point, will have heard that disclaimer followed by a stream of patently racist nonsense. In the wake of the London bombings large sections of the British media have struck a similar tone in articles and broadcasts about Muslim people living in Britain.

Michael Rosen: Three Songs of the Dead

From Iraq We have no mouthsWe evaporatedYou don’t see the holes in the ground where we were putWe are the unfoundWe are uncountedYou don’t see the homes we madeWe’re not even the small print or the bit in brackets.You see less of us than you see of the dustYou see less of us than you see of the windBecause we were somewhere else,because we lived far from you,because our minutes, hours, days and years did not last as long as yours,because you have cameras that point the other way,because you talk about other people……Of that moment when we wentyou can’t even say you missed it.

G8 keeps poverty for the future

First of all there is this topline figure that they have given of $50 billion in aid by 2010. The thing to do is to compare that with the scale of the problem and what was needed.

No action on climate change from the G8

The G8 summit has missed a major opportunity to tackle climate change.

G8 solutions: ‘Crumbs from the rich are not enough’

Many of the organisations that have been involved with the Make Poverty History campaign are disappointed with the G8’s communiqué.

Our questions must be answered, say Tube staff

Staff in the public services played a crucial and heroic role in the aftermath of the bombings in London on Thursday of last week — none more so than Tube drivers and station workers.

How hospital workers coped with London bombing victims — despite cuts and privatisation

Health workers were another group of emergency service workers who performed tirelessly last week to save lives.

BBC bias: How Auntie turned into Big Brother

I and a number of friends took the number 30 bus from Hackney, east London, to attend the Marxism 2005 event on Friday of last week.

‘Stand together against bigotry’

I offer my sincere condolences to all those affected and stand shoulder to shoulder with them.

Peace vigils across Britain

Around 70 people attended a peace vigil in Edinburgh on Friday of last week after the London bombings.

Who says?

"Make no mistake, Britain will almost certainly have to sacrifice some of our ancient legal rights if we wish to protect our citizens."Daily Mail editorial


Reviews

China Miéville: A Marxist guide to monsters

I’m a fan of horror — someone who has always loved monsters. So I’m now trying to make some sort of political sense of why I was so interested in them.

Three new DVD releases for a summer evening

Ae Fond KissDirected by Ken Loach

Reviews round-up

Womad29-31 JulyReading


What We Think

After the London bombings: the troops must leave now more than ever

Last week, before the terrible bombings in London on Thursday, we learned that the US and British governments had drawn up secret plans to withdraw troops from Iraq. Defence secretary John Reid was forced to admit the existence of such plans after they were leaked to the Mail on Sunday.


Other Categories

Jim Benson

Jim Benson has died peacefully at the age of 77. Jim was an active socialist all his life, working in the rail industry and living in Camden. He had a wealth of anecdotes, often told while rolling the thinnest cigarettes imaginable.

Sam Watson

It is with unbearable sadness that we write of the sudden death of Sam Watson, beloved and wonderful son of Paula and Alan of south London.

Letters

Letters

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