Socialist Worker

Socialist Worker

Issue: 2027

Dated: 18 Nov 2006

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Palestine defies Israeli terrorism

George Bush and Tony Blair’s chatter about new sweeping peace initiatives in the Middle East will come as little comfort to the 1.4 million Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip. Israel, the US’s ally in the region, has unleashed another bloody assualt on civilians in the besieged territory.

International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other


Farepak bosses won’t be suffering this Christmas

Sir Clive Thompson and his wife left their Kent mansion this week and jetted off to a sunshine holiday in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Bush humiliated in US elections - now get the troops out

Suddenly, debate on both sides of the Atlantic centres on what was once seen as impossible – withdrawal of US and British forces from Iraq.

US multinational Bechtel to leave Iraq

The US engineering company Bechtel is leading the corporate withdrawal from Iraq. Despite much of the country’s infrastructure still being in ruins, US government funding for reconstruction is coming to an end.

Socialist Worker appeal - Help us raise £200,000

Paul Garraway is a post worker in Oxford. His South Central number one CWU union branch has voted to donate £50 to the Socialist Worker appeal.

Single status means misery for workers

Council workers in Staffordshire left their offices in tears last week. They had received letters from their employers telling them they could face pay cuts of up to £10,000 a year.

Embarrassments for the justice system

Surrey police and the 'black' driver The Crown Prosecution Service has been ordered to prepare a report to explain to a judge why a black man was convicted of reversing up the M23 even though CCTV images showed the man originally arrested had been white.

Organising for Fighting Unions: turning anger into workplace activism

Some 900 trade unionists, most of them delegates elected by union organisations, met last weekend to debate political representation and organising against employers’ attacks, and to launch a Workers Charter.

Debating political representation for workers

During the afternoon of the conference there was discussion over what sort of political representation the unions should have.

The Workers Charter

For more than a generation workers have faced an onslaught on their jobs, wages, conditions and trade union rights. Privatisation and deregulation have been implemented by both Conservative and New Labour governments. The early 21st century has seen a rebirth of radicalism on a global scale. Now is the time for trade unionists to rebuild their organisations and recommit themselves to defend working peoples’ livelihoods and rights.

Life on a knife edge

Last week Tyrell Anderson was sentenced for the killing of his best friend Tommy Winston in January. The two teenagers had been friends since they were ten.

Reports round-up

School students march in London Fifty school students took part in a die-in last Saturday to remember the dead of Iraq, Afghanistan, Palestine and Lebanon. This was during a weekend when the establishment picks and chooses which of the dead we are to remember.

Ballot for action in Gloucester City Council

The Unison union is preparing to ballot for industrial action at Gloucester City Council.

Solidarity with activists in Unison

Three activists in Unison are facing disciplinary action from the union following a walkout in protest at Tony Blair’s speech to the TUC in September this year.

Support grows for pensions conference

Unison union leaders have been forced by pressure from the rank and file to back the call for a special conference on pensions.

Defend Yunus Bakhsh

Yunus Bakhsh, a leading activist in the Unison union, has now been suspended from his job as a health worker in Newcastle for six weeks.

Manchester health workers: ‘We won’t let them destroy this service’

Over 100 nurses, occupational therapists, activities staff, senior support workers, team secretaries, day care staff, technical instructors and therapists lobbied the board of Manchester mental health and social care trust on Thursday of last week.

Victory for Ladywell Pool campaign

A two and a half year long and hard-fought campaign to save Lewisham’s Ladywell pool, jointly initiated and chaired by Lewisham Respect, led to a stunning victory last week.

Lib Dem council says Islington Green School will close

Islington’s Liberal Democrat controlled council, against national party policy, has ignored the wishes of the governors of Islington Green School (IGS) and issued a closure notice on the school in order to reopen it in 2008 as an academy.

Crumbs are not enough for striking Tunnock's workers

Some 400 workers struck last week at Tunnock's biscuit factory in Uddingston, near Glasgow, over pay.

Postal workers strike in Manvers

Postal workers in Manvers, South Yorkshire, struck for 24 hours last week and are planning further action on 22, 25 and 27 November after management imposed punitive sanctions on their return to work.

North Sea divers' strike wins 45 percent pay rise

More than 900 striking North Sea divers and support staff voted to accept a 44.7 percent pay increase over two years from employers on Friday of last week, ending a ten-day strike.

Strike threat brings success at Telegraph

Three days of planned strike action by members of the NUJ journalists’ union at the Daily and Sunday Telegraph has forced management to withdraw its threats to impose new working conditions on staff.

Metroline bus workers want justice

Around 2,500 bus drivers and engineers working at Metroline launched the first major bus strike in London for seven years on Tuesday.

Rage as Nick Griffin walks free

Anti-fascist campaigners reacted with outrage on Friday of last week as Nick Griffin, leader of the British National Party (BNP), and his sidekick Mark Collett were cleared of charges of incitement to racial hatred.

Leaving Labour for Respect in Calderdale

Sajid Mehmood, a local community worker, and seven other former members of the Labour Party have torn up their party cards to join Respect in West Yorkshire.

Veil row in court

What is acceptable dress in a court case? Some High Court judges wear a court coat and waistcoat, bands and a skirt or trousers beneath a black silk gown, and a wig.

Questions after 40 year sentence for Dhiren Barot

Dhiren Barot was sentenced to at least 40 years in prison last week for what the judge said were "plans to bring indiscriminate carnage, bloodshed and butchery first in Washington, New York and Newark, and thereafter the UK on a colossal and unprecedented scale".

Bush meltdown is a tribute to the anti-war movement

In a crushing blow to George Bush, US voters last week voiced their dissatisfaction with the war in Iraq, the declining economy, and ethics in government.

Playing the race card on campus

The witch-hunt against Muslims continued this week with sensational allegations splashed over newspaper front pages that university campuses across Britain were being infiltrated by "Islamic extremists".

JJB strike takes on fat cat boss

Low paid workers, many on the minimum wage, are in a bitter battle over pay against their multi-millionaire employer in Wigan.

JJB strikers demand action over use of agency labour

A delegation of JJB strikers travelled to London on Thursday of last week to demand government action over the use of agency labour during their strikes.


Indian Social Forum lit up by a spirit of resistance

Last week saw 40,000 people come together to demonstrate and organise resistance at the Indian Social Forum (ISF) in Delhi, India.

Picture of Indian Social Forum delegates


Oaxaca need not burn in solitude

Oaxaca need not burn in solitude

Will Democrat win bring change?

The New York Times carried a wonderful report of how Hashim al-Menti brought the news of Donald Rumsfeld’s resignation as US defence secretary to the group of US Marines occupying his house in Iraq’s Anbar province. "Rumsfeld is gone," he said. One of the Marines replied, "Who’s Rumsfeld?"


Debating Chavez: Pirates of the Caribbean

Not for the first time, Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez spoke for many people around the world when he called George Bush "the devil" in a recent speech to the United Nations. As it turned out, it echoed the feelings of many US voters, as the recent election there has shown. And despite a barrage of propaganda from the right, it seems likely that Chavez will be re-elected to the Venezuelan presidency on 4 December.

Daniel Ortega: how the leopard changed his spots

In 1979, a 40-year dictatorship in Nicaragua was overthrown by a mass movement. It was headed, in its final months, by the Sandinista Liberation Front, led by Daniel Ortega.

A veteran’s homage to the Spanish revolt of 1936-9

Howard Andrews, known as Andy, is Britain’s oldest surviving veteran of the Spanish Civil War of 1936-9. He spoke to Socialist Worker about his extraordinary life and a memorable visit to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the civil war

The illusion of Britishness

In the past few years a peculiarly old-fashioned - and sinister - set of phrases has re-entered the political vocabulary of the Westminster establishment. New Labour ministers and their Tory shadows are increasingly talking about "British values" and "our way of life".


Braintax: a panoramic, hip-hop view of a turbulent world

It’s not every day that you come across a hip-hop album that deals explicitly with the thoughts going through the mind of a suicide bomber, or talks frankly about how scaremongering over refugees fuels the growth of the Nazi British National Party.

The Seduction of Almighty God: a wonderful example of ‘theatre of catastrophe’

The Great English playwright Howard Barker has been marginalised by the London theatre establishment - none of his dramas have been staged by the National Theatre in London.

In The Face of History | Firsts 2006 | We Shall Overcome | Innocent Voices

In The Face of HistoryBarbican, central Londonuntil 28 January Emmy Andrisse’s Girls Hanging Onto Shop Railings taken just after the liberation of Amsterdam from the Nazis in 1945 is part of the In The Face of History exhibition at the Barbican in central London. The exhibition charts the history of European photography from 1900.

What We Think

A plan to make the fat cats even fatter

A government funded think-tank, the Economic Research Institute, has suggested cutting corporation tax in Northern Ireland to just 12 percent in order to stimulate jobs.

Other Categories

Leon Kuhn: lame ducks

Tim: Sack and awe


New lifestyle needed Socialist Worker makes many of the right noises abut climate change, but I wonder how serious you are about the fundamental changes that are necessary in our lives if we are to really deal with this issue.

Meetings, events and demonstrations

Meetings And Events

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