Socialist Worker

Socialist Worker

Issue: 1976

Dated: 12 Nov 2005

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‘You must go now Mr Blair’

Tony Blair's grip on office weakens each passing day. Yet he remains determined to pursue his pro-market agenda to the bitter end and to shadow George Bush’s every step.

International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other


How the BNP was humiliated in Leeds

Nick Griffin, leader of the fascist British National Party (BNP) was pelted with eggs and flour as he arrived at Leeds Crown Court to face charges of incitement to racial hatred on Wednesday of last week.

Military families get set for peace conference

The growth of the Military Families Against the War campaign in Britain is one sign of the growing pressure on Tony Blair over his part in the war on Iraq.

The mood grows stronger in the trade unions

The International Peace Conference on Saturday 10 December will see delegates from Britain, Iraq and the US come together to organise the next steps for the international anti-war movement.

Meetings renew the movement in Scotland

Over 80 people attended the first ever Military Families Against the War (MFAW) public meetings in Aberdeen and Inverness last week.

Crucial battle after two activists sacked

Sefton council on Merseyside has thrown down the gauntlet to the country’s biggest public sector union by sacking Nigel Flanagan and Paul Summers, two full time activists with Sefton Unison.

Growing campaign to sweep out low pay

Cleaners, some of Britain’s lowest paid workers, are stepping up their campaign for decent wages and conditions — and they have already forced one set of bosses to negotiate.


Some 5,500 members of the GMB union working as British Gas engineers are balloting for strikes in the run-up to Christmas over the company’s intention to close the final salary pension scheme of parent company Centrica to new starters from April next year.

Reports round-up

All out in Huddersfield Caretakers at Huddersfield Technical college have entered their second week of indefinite strike action to win equal pay with their council counterparts.

Communities unite to oppose deportations

Wigan Over 300 people staged a rally in Wigan, north west England, last Saturday to protest against the deportation of Sarah Hata and her family. The family were depoted to Uganda last week.

Young people’s rights: Blears should see this

The Tricycle Cinema in Kilburn, north London, hosted the launch of a new film about the issues facing young people on Tuesday last week.

Demanding democracy in defence of Eileen Short

Tenants, trade unionists and MPs took part in a lobby of Tower Hamlets council, east London this week in support of Eileen Short, a council press officer who faces the sack.

Postal workers: 'Damned if we do'

Postal workers at the East London mail centre at Bow Locks have pushed back an outrageous assault from management.

Education: selecting for failure

In the coming months we’re going to have quite a fight on to defend what remains of the comprehensive education system, or indeed, to make some advances. As we now know the government is hellbent on bringing in a whole new way of running secondary schools.

Government on back foot over assault on civil rights

New labour was due to face a tough battle this week to force its draconian assaults on civil liberties through parliament.

Privatisation in the post

Despite the disasters of rail and tube privatisation, the New Labour government could press ahead with its neo-liberal plans to sell off the postal service.

Hewitt forced into health service retreat

Health secretary Patricia Hewitt’s half baked plans to reorganise and privatise services run by NHS primary care trusts (PCTs) are running into deep trouble.

Irish ferries

Some 10,000 workers took to the streets of Dublin last week to protest at Irish Ferries’ plans to sack 550 staff and replace them with temps working for £2.40 an hour. Irish Ferries is trying to implement the spirit of the Bolkestein directive, which attacks the terms and conditions of workers across the EU.

Bush and Blair: chemical allies

US forces used chemical weapons indiscriminately against civilians when they besieged the Iraqi city of Fallujah one year ago this week.

Standing up for migrant rights

Tony Blair is unleashing a vicious assault on migrants and asylum seekers that has gathered pace the more unpopular his policies have become.

Who says?

"George Bush is a murderer. I’m going to head the march against him stepping foot on Argentine soil."Diego Maradona, speaking out against the visit of the US president to South America last week

Rachid Taha interview: using music to oppose war

Rachid Taha, the radical French Algerian singer, will join Brian Eno, Nitin Sawhney and others for the most exciting musical event of the year.

‘Welfare hawk’ hunts pensions

The government is preparing further assaults on pensions and incapacity benefit.

Protest at Zimbabwe arrests

Twenty four hours after the arrest of about 120 demonstrators against poverty their lawyers are still told that arresting officers have not finished preparing papers for the arrested. Last night most of them were transferred from Harare Central to Chitungwiza and Dema, respectively 25km and 30km outside the capital Harare.

Crushing defeat for Blair

Blair must go now, and take all his rotten policies with him.

Zimbabwean prisoners released

The 120 demonstrators who were arrested on Tuesday have been released from police custody after spending three nights in the cells. The attorney general's office recommended that their cases be pursued by way of summons.


Mass protests and strikes greet Bush in Argentina

Mar del Plata was practically militarised during the summit, and security fences separated the presidents from the people.

France: rage of the poor

The slums of France have risen in revolt.

Despair behind the French riots

Seine-Saint-Denis, on the outskirts of Paris, is known as the Banlieue Rouge, the red suburb.

Italian students

A wave of student demonstrations and occupations has swept through Italian cities, including in Rome, against the government’s plans to increase privatisation of higher education.

Zimbabweans fight repression

Around 200 trade unionists were arrested in Zimbabwe on Tuesday as they tried to hold protests. The Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) had called the day of action over food shortages and other issues.


The final days of a fatally weakened prime minister

I’ve said it before and been wrong — but now I’m pretty confident that the skids really are under Tony Blair.


A spectre of class

Something has been happening in recent weeks which should not be possible according to much orthodox wisdom. The government has been doing its utmost to stop trade unions using the power of their members to protect public sector pensions.

Putting the egg before the chicken

My previous column explained how "evolutionary psychologists" claim to show that all basic aspects of an organism are best understood as the product of its genes.

Chavez and the Venezuelan revolution

Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez has become a focus across Latin America for resistance to George Bush, writes Hugh O’Shaughnessy


Ken MacLeod: science fiction can help us learn to change the world

What were you hoping to achieve with your new novel?

Diane Arbus | Pillars of the Community | Hidden

Diane Arbus exhibitionV&A museumuntil 15 January

Books round-up

The Great War for Civilisationby Robert FiskBookmarks price £20

What We Think

Unrest shows the need to resist the elite’s agenda

"Riots are the voice of the unheard," said the great black civil rights leader Martin Luther King in response to the uprisings that swept US cities in the 1960s.

Be part of Blair’s fall

From inside the bunker that 10 Downing Street is increasingly becoming we are told that Tony Blair is "full of gusto". The reality is that Blair is fading from power.

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