Socialist Worker

Socialist Worker


Issue: 2106

Dated: 21 Jun 2008




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United we will smash the Nazi BNP

The British National Party (BNP) has been picking up seats in elections recently, including their first place on the London assembly. What is fuelling this disturbing trend?


International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other

News

EIS faces staff strike over pay

Members of the Unite union at the Education Institute of Scotland (EIS) have voted by 100 percent for strikes over their salary settlement, which should have been paid from 1 April.

London protest in defence of Geo TV in Pakistan

Over 30 people demonstrated outside the London embassy of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Tuesday of this week over attempts to prevent the Pakistani TV channel, Geo TV, from broadcasting from Dubai in the UAE.

Thousands join solid Network Rail action to derail bosses’ plans

Over 12,000 Network Rail maintenance workers in the RMT union struck from 12 noon last Saturday to 5.59pm last Sunday in a dispute over harmonisation of terms and conditions.

Action looming at Royal Mail

Postal workers could start a national strike later this year after delegates at last week’s CWU union conference voted unanimously for action against attacks on their pensions, threats to shut scores of offices, and the menace of privatisation.

Strikers shake Shell bosses

The four-day strike over pay by tanker drivers supplying Shell petrol stations showed the power that workers have to disrupt the normal running of the system.

Reports round-up

Firefighters to ground airlines Firefighters in the Unite union at the Highland and Islands Airports in Scotland are to strike on Monday of next week and Friday 4 July after a breakdown in pay talks.

Defend union activists: Sued for thousands after being victimised

There was a fringe meeting against the witch-hunt of activists in Unison set for Thursday lunchtime at the conference. The decision by Unison to appeal recent judgments by the Certification Officer in favour of Tony Staunton and Yunus Bakhsh meant their cases were excluded from discussion on the conference floor.

Left success in Unison elections

The election to the service group executives of Unison saw left candidates poll well.

Unison conference: mood for action on pay

The battle over public sector pay and anger against the Labour government shaped the debates at the Unison union local government service group conference in Bournemouth this week.

Lambeth meeting for council housing

Over 150 tenants, leaseholders and local trade unionists met in Lambeth, south London, on Wednesday of last week to organise opposition to the council’s attempt to privatise the remaining council housing stock.

Science museums strike against below-inflation pay offer

The strike by members of the PCS and Prospect civil service workers’ unions at the National Museum of Science and Industry (NMSI) over below-inflation pay severely hit the running of the museum.

Gordon Brown wins 42 days detention, but at what price?

Gordon Brown narrowly scraped home in a crucial parliamentary vote on 42-day internment last week. Britain now has the most draconian anti-terror laws in the Western world.

Case studies raise question marks over terror convictions

The existing terrorism laws have the potential for miscarriages of justice.

CWU conference: No more cheques in the post for Labour?

Debate about the future relationship between the CWU union and the Labour Party formed the backdrop to many debates at the union’s conference last week.

CWU conference: Telecoms

Delegates to the telecoms section of last week’s CWU conference fired a warning shot at British Telecom (BT), which is looking to attack their pension scheme.

CWU conference: merger talks

A motion from London branches that sought to rule out any possible merger between the CWU and the Unite union was passed after a card vote.

Build the national shop stewards network conference

The National Shop Stewards Network is holding its national conference in central London on Saturday 28 June.

Defend Hackney bus union rep

Strike action at the Hackney CT Plus bus garage in east London planned for Friday of last week was called off at the last minute pending talks with management.

London bus drivers’ meeting says, we want pay that’s fair

The Unite union held a local pay meeting for bus workers in north east London last week.

Management climbdown after UCU threaten Keele with greylisting

Members of the UCU lecturers’ union at Keele university have won a victory in their fight against threatened redundancies in the School of Economic and Management Studies (SEMS).

Schools to strike in three battles over the future of education

Students walked out of Withins School in Bolton on Tuesday of this week in protest at their school being sold-off and turned into an academy.

How the BNP poses as a respectable party

The British National Party (BNP) has made some worrying electoral breakthroughs in recent years, winning council seats in a number of areas across Britain and a seat on the London assembly in May.

Nazi threat to Reverend and the Makers

Jon McClure from Reverend and the Makers is speaking out in the face of death threats by Nazis on the Stormfront internet bulletin board and other fascist websites.

Building local groups against the BNP

This Saturday’s anti-Nazi demonstration in London is only the start of the battle to stop the fascist British National Party (BNP).

New Labour’s draconian plan to humiliate offenders

A new crime report commissioned by the government shows how far Labour has abandoned any notion that the criminal justice system should attempt to rehabilitate offenders.

Rising inflation fuels pay anger

Spiralling food and fuel prices across the world hit home this week as the Bank of England announced that the government’s preferred inflation measure had climbed above the 3 percent barrier.

We can extend abortion rights

We finally have an opportunity to extend abortion rights in Britain. Amendments have been put to the government’s Human Fertilisation and Embryology bill that seek to increase access to abortion services.

Irish voters reject plans for a neoliberal Europe

Irish voters have dealt a decisive blow to attempts to create a corporate, militarised European Union (EU) superstate by voting to reject the Lisbon treaty.

Gordon Brown refuses to hold British referendum on Lisbon treaty

Gordon Brown’s government has pressed on with the parliamentary vote to ratify the Lisbon treaty on the European Union (EU), despite Irish voters rejecting it.

Depleted uranium: the silent killer stalks streets of Fallujah

The US military is attempting to cover up a great crime taking place in the Iraqi city of Fallujah.

Sadr movement plans new offensive

Rebel Iraqi cleric Moqtada al-Sadr has announced that his movement will no longer take part in any government that supports the US occupation.

Demonstrators defy the police to protest against George Bush’s visit

The real aim of George Bush’s visit to Britain became clear on Monday when Gordon Brown announced more British troops for Afghanistan and "further sanctions" on Iran.

Photos of the anti-Bush protest on 15 June, 2008

Teachers strike at Pimlico School

Today 66 members of the NUT union at Pimlico School began a two-day strike. On an 80 percent turnout, 72 percent had voted to strike.

Protesters march in London against the fascist BNP

Up to 10,000 people took to the streets of London today to join the national march against the fascist British National Party (BNP).


International

Obama’s ‘backyard’ politics for Latin America are very much like George Bush’s

A few weeks ago US presidential hopeful Barack Obama travelled to Miami to speak to the Cuban American Foundation, a right wing organisation much loved by George Bush.

Anti-fascism revives in Italy

Fascist violence has spread since the election of Italy’s new right wing government in April. However this has led to an impressive response from anti-fascists.


Comment

‘Economic growth’ is not the way to solve child poverty

It is a damning indictment of New Labour that figures released last week showed a leap in child poverty for the second year running.

Eamonn McCann on the victory of the Raytheon 9 anti-war protesters

On 9 August 2006, nine Northern Irish anti-war activists occupied the Derry offices of Raytheon, one of the biggest arms manufacturers in the world, and destroyed its computers.

Could fascism take power today?

How big a threat is fascism today? For many, even on the left, it belongs to the first half of the 20th century, the "age of the dictators". It has nothing to do with the era of neoliberalism, globalisation, and the internet.


Features

How powerful is the mass media?

The idea that the mass media controls our ideas is a very common one. According to this theory, the media acts as a kind of syringe that injects propaganda directly into our minds.

The hidden story of West Indian volunteers in the Second World War

The arrival of the Empire Windrush 60 years ago represents a defining moment in British history.


Reviews

Bandit Queen

Phoolan Devi was the most feared bandit in India in the 1970s. Born to a low caste poor family who sold her into marriage at the age of 11, Phoolan rebelled and joined a gang of bandits.

Lay It Down - Al Green

Al Green has spent the last two years putting together an array of well-known singers, musicians and producers to complete an album with a classic soul sound.

Dr Korczak’s Example: reality crashes into a utopian vision

This play tells the true story of Janusz Korczak, children’s author, paediatrician and social experimenter, who was the director of a Jewish orphanage in 1930s Poland.

Street and Studio: Bid to capture the street is without a clear focus

Almost since the time of its invention, photography has gone hand in hand with portraiture.


What We Think

David Davis MP resignation: Left’s gift to the right

It is a sign of just how far to the right New Labour has moved when it can be challenged on civil liberties by the Tory shadow home secretary, the hard right David Davis MP.

Police show true colours with attack on Whitehall protest

The steady erosion of democracy in Britain has been exposed by the way police handled last Sunday’s demonstration against George Bush.

Gordon Brown: standing ‘shoulder to shoulder’ for more war

When he became prime minister the one thing Gordon Brown had going for him was that he was not Tony Blair. His supporters told us that he would not stand "shoulder to shoulder" with George Bush in any future wars.


Other Categories

Tim: Renouncing violence

Letters

Letters

Who says?

"Let me thank him for the steadfastness and resolution he has shown in rooting out terrorism in all parts of the world, in working for a Middle East peace settlement, in bringing hope to Africa, in working for a free trade world."Gordon Brown on George Bush



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