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Socialist Worker


Issue: 1955

Dated: 11 Jun 2005




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Be one in a million at the G8 protests

Alys Elica Zaerin is a student at Alexandra Park school in north London and the convenor of School Students Against the War. She says:


International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other

News

How the British left can take up Europe

The no votes in the French and Dutch referendums on the European Constitutional Treaty have sent shockwaves through mainstream parties across the European Union (EU). France’s ruling conservative coalition and the centre left Socialist Party are in turmoil following the result.

Netherlands vote shows deep resentment against neo-liberal project

The Dutch no vote to the EU constitution was a blow for the right wing government and a victory for the left.

Settlement in sight for low paid Ambala workers

As Socialist Worker went to press, workers at Ambala Foods in Stratford, east London, seemed close to reaching a settlement in their seven-week long battle for decent pay.

BBC union members in the mood to fight against cuts

BBC unions were set to meet with director-general Mark Thompson on Wednesday of this week in an attempt to negotiate over his plans for 3,800 job losses.

Unite against fascism

Anti-fascist activists are out to stop the British National Party (BNP) at a council by-election in Barking and Dagenham, east London, on 23 June.

Janet Alder’s case expects new evidence

Janet Alder’s civil case against police officers involved in the death of her brother Christopher has been adjourned until December, following a short hearing in London last week. A similar case brought by Christopher’s two sons has also been put back to that date.

Reports round-up

Troubled academy votes for action Members of the NASUWT teachers’ union at Unity City Academy in Middlesbrough have voted overwhelmingly for industrial action to protect their conditions of service.

Post sell-off plan sparks CWU row over Labour funding

A sharp political debate has broken out inside the postal and telecom workers’ CWU union about the Labour Party.

Sefton: a key battle against victimisation

WORKERS AT Sefton council on Merseyside have voted to ballot for industrial action over the victimisation of two union officials and four shop stewards for opposing privatisation of council housing.

Refuse collectors

Single status Three refuse collectors in Coventry have been arrested following alleged incidents on picket lines during the recent strikes

Unison elections

The results of Unison’s national executive council (NEC) elections were disappointing for the left.

Erskine bridge toll collectors strike over pay

Toll collectors at the Erskine Bridge, west Scotland, struck for the second time last week over pay.

Renewed jobs fight at PCS conference

Members of the PCS civil service workers’ union were meeting at our annual conference in Brighton this week.

Docks ballot over pay

Dockers in the T&G union at Associated British Ports (ABP) are balloting for strike action in their long running pay dispute.

Anti-deportation campaigns

Nearly 100 people, mostly those fighting deportation campaigns, attended the annual meeting of the National Coalition of Anti-Deportation Campaigns in Manchester on Saturday of last week.

Make poverty history — schools mobilise for G8

Two hundred students at Cardinal Wiseman High School, west London, walked around their local shopping area in Greenford before half term with placards and banners in support of the Make Poverty History campaign.

Edinburgh says ‘We’ll welcome you’ to G8 protestors

As Scotland gears up for the G8 summit there has been a huge build up in momentum for the protests in Edinburgh and Gleneagles.

Blair crumbles as Bush rejects aid for the poor

Tony Blair has completely caved in to George Bush over the key issues of debt, aid and climate change — even before the G8 leaders fly in to Scotland for their summit.

G8 hypocrisy over corruption and aid

"The problems of Africa are very complex. Aid just gets swallowed up in corruption." That argument, from the Daily Telegraph, has been repeated in various forms in the last week.

Belle & Sebastian: ‘It’s irresponsible not to march’

‘The G8 summit is here on our doorstep — to ignore it would be irresponsible. To march against it is not irresponsible, contrary to recent media reports.

News in brief

GMB backs the protests Members of the GMB union meeting at their national conference in Gateshead this week voted unanimously to back protests at the G8 summit.

Who Says?

"If you are vigilant, dress like locals and hire armed escorts, then there is a 70 percent to 80 percent chance you will be OK."Abdul Razuqi, the head of tourism in Basra, Iraq on the chances of foreign visitors surviving a trip to his town

How the NHS is being privatised by stealth

Last spring Tony Blair had a breakfast meeting with the private companies trying to muscle in on the NHS.

Hospital Trust board gets no confidence vote

Trade union members at the Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS trust returned a unanimous vote of no confidence in the trust’s executive directors at an emergency meeting last week.

Respect leads fight in Bethnal Green

Around 200 people protested outside the Bethnal Green fire station, east London, on Tuesday morning.

Remembering Walter Rodney

"Emancipate yourself from mental slavery, none but ourselves can free our minds." Marcus Garvey, put to music by Bob Marley

Mass arrests as military cracks down on Pakistani telecom workers anti-privatisation struggle

In a military crackdown hundreds of Pakistan Telecom Corp Limited (PTCL) workers have been arrested across the country. According to the PTCL Workers Action Committee, 1,500 have been arrested since Saturday 11 June, when the government announced that the telecom sell off will start on 18 June.


International

The poor rise up in fury to protest in Cape Town

Toyi-toying youth, burning tyres, barricades, teargas, stun grenades, rubber bullets, running battles with the police — these scenes from apartheid’s battlefields were rerun in the townships of Cape Town, South Africa, over the last week.

Work stoppage and riots in Harare, Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe's trade union leaders called a two-day stayaway for this week in protest at president Robert Mugabe’s latest assault.

Africa round-up

Niger Some 2,500 people marched through the streets of Niger’s capital, Niamey, last week to demand that the government does more to relieve the food crisis.

Bolivian uprising rocks the elite

Four weeks of strikes, protests and blockades have thrown the South American state of Bolivia into turmoil, and forced president Carlos Mesa to offer his resignation.

Revolt in Bolivia has come from the grassroots

The Bolivian rebellion is the latest uprising to hit the region. The Latin American version of "regime change" is proving a major headache for the US, the multinationals keen to exploit the region’s resources and their allies in the region’s ruling classes.

Kifaya activists in Egypt defy the thugs

Over 1,000 Egyptian campaigners have defied police terror to protest at state backed violence against democracy activists.


Comment

European votes reveal the alternative

The coverage by the so-called quality press of the referendums on the European constitution in France and the Netherlands has been a complete disgrace.


Features

Interview with Ousmane Sembène — father of African film

In London to promote his new film, Moolaadé, Senegalese film maker and novelist Ousmane Sembène spoke to Ken Olende and Charlie Kimber

Using art as a weapon — Ousmane Sembène's story

Ousmane Sembène was born in 1923 in Senegal. At the time this was part of the colony of French West Africa.

Jean-Paul Sartre — philosophy of freedom

What do you imagine when you think of a philosopher? Someone who spends his or her time pondering the meaning of existence, but never reaching any conclusion? Or someone far removed from the real world?

Coming events

Monday 20-26 JuneRefugee Week.<a href="http://www.refugeeweek.org.uk" target = "_blank">www.refugeeweek.org.uk</a>

Birth and development of a powerful force

In 1879 Karl Marx and his collaborator Frederick Engels summed up their politics thus:


Reviews

The passion and the politics of Frida Kahlo

Frida Kahlo is an icon who is arguably more famous for her image than for her work. Her paintings sell for millions—celebrity fans include Madonna and Salma Hayek. She is hailed as a feminist artist, a deeply personal painter of women’s experience.

Moolaadé — a battle of traditions

Moolaadé Directed by Ousmane Sembène

A photographic look at Joe Strummer’s legacy

ReduxExposure Gallery, 22-23 Little Portland Street, London W1 until 30 June

Reviews round-up

Guerilla — The Taking of Patty HearstDirected by Robert Stonein cinemas now

Art inspired by horror in Iraq

Fernando Botero is Colombia’s best-known painter, famous for pictures of middle class families and plump businessmen. But his latest work is a radical departure from such cosy small town scenes.


What We Think

Everyone should be heading to G8 protests in Edinburgh

Bob Geldof’s call last week for one million people to protest at the G8 summit in July has focused attention back on the demands for 100 percent Third World debt cancellation, and more and better aid.


Other Categories

Letters

Stop this housing sell-off The government is breaking its election pledges already — and just 500 yards from John Prescott’s sumptious headquarters. In the 19th century the philanthropist George Peabody founded the Peabody Trust and built decent housing for the benefit of London’s poor.

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Marxism 2005 event

Thursday 7 July to Monday 11 July, central London

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