Socialist Worker

Socialist Worker

Issue: 2165

Dated: 22 Aug 2009

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Afghanistan: British army chief admits there will be five more years of hell

Growing numbers of families in Britain, the US and, most of all, Afghanistan are shedding tears for their loved ones killed in a hellish war.

International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other


Indonesia: the ravages of colonialism

Celebrations are under way this week in Indonesia. The country is looking back on 64 years since founding president Sukarno and vice-president Mohammed Hatta proclaimed independence from the Netherlands.

Do growth figures herald an economic recovery?

Recent figures showing Japan, Hong Kong, France and Germany creeping out of the recession have been hailed in some quarters as heralding the end of the global economic crisis.

1 in 5 young people face life on the dole

More than 250,000 young people across Britain will receive their A-level results this week.

Blockade wrecks BNP’s Codnor hate-fest

Anti-fascists scored a huge victory last Saturday when more than 2,000 people protested against the British National Party (BNP) Red, White and Blue "festival" in the village of Codnor, Derbyshire.

Map of Codnor protest

Local people don’t want the Nazis in their area

Residents of Codnor and Denby Village in Derbyshire’s Amber Valley have had to put up with the Nazis’ festival coming to town for three years now.

Eurostar cleaners call new ballot

Cleaners working for Eurostar contractors The Carlisle Group are to ballot for strike action over pay, conditions and management bullying.

Will John Lennon airport workers say hello or goodbye to strikes?

Some 150 ServisAir workers at Liverpool’s John Lennon Airport may stage a continuous strike from Thursday of this week.

Construction workers' ballot underway

More than 2,000 engineering construction workers in the Unite and GMB unions at seven petrochemical plants and power stations are balloting for an official strike over jobs.

Demonstrate over Sean Rigg who died in police custody

Sean Rigg died after being arrested and restrained by four police officers in Brixton, south London, on 21 August 2008

Construction workers organise against the blacklist

An informal support network for building workers blacklisted for their trade union and safety activities has been set up.

Workers at IBM angry at attack on pensions

The Unite union has warned IBM of a coming backlash from thousands of workers over its decision to withdraw its final salary pension scheme from around 28 percent of workers.

Bosses explain to strikers how to occupy

Human Resource managers are starting to take note of resistance to job cuts. Personnel Today, their house magazine, has two articles of interest to Socialist Worker readers.

Strikes win new offer at National Express

Transport unions suspended strike action at National Express East Anglia last week after receiving a new offer from management.

Firefighters stand determined against bosses' attacks

Disputes are erupting across the fire service as workers refuse to bow to a string of attacks on their working conditions and the service.

Pictures of the anti-Nazi protest at the BNP's Red, White & Blue 'festival'

Vote left in UCU elections

Voting in by-elections for the UCU lecturers’ union national executive committee begins this week.

Tesco distribution workers reject poor offer

Workers at a Tesco distribution centre threatened with closure have voted overwhelmingly to strike.

Red, White and Blue: racist games, T-shirts and a fascist bomber

The pressure of the protests on Saturday forced the Nazis to show their true colours.

After Camberwell fire: Why did council say another tower block was safe?

Residents of a south London tower block, similar to one where six people died in a fire last month, say Southwark council misled them about safety issues in their building.

BNP thugs cower behind police lines

Hundreds of police officers, many on horses or with dogs, protected the Red, White and Blue event.

Voices of unity from people on the anti-Nazi protest

Yasmin Rassool, student at the University of Brighton‘I think what we’ve done here today is amazing. We did what we set out to do – stopped the BNP from getting to the festival and put our message across.

Power of solidarity can blow away Vestas bosses

A hurricane of solidarity with the Vestas workers hit towns across Britain on their first national day of action on Wednesday of last week.

What next for the movement?

Unite Against Fascism (UAF) has been at the centre of building resistance to the Nazi BNP. It called the national mobilisation and blockades that took place at Codnor.

Vestas solidarity round-up

People in 25 towns and cities across Britain organised solidarity on the first Vestas national day of action on Wednesday of last week.

Solider's mum: 'Gordon Brown has blood on his hands'

Danni Hamilton’s son is in the British army. He has now been given battle orders to go to Afghanistan. She spoke to Socialist Worker about why the troops should be brought home:

Wife of soldier who refuses to fight speaks out

Clare Glenton’s husband, Joe, is a British soldier who has refused to return to fight in Afghanistan and is being charged with desertion. Clare spoke to Socialist Worker:

Sorrow and anger in Wootton Basset as dead soldiers return

People lined the streets of Wootton Bassett in Wiltshire on Tuesday to show their respects for the British soldiers recently killed in Afghanistan.

Afghan elections are a sham under occupaton

The beleaguered president of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai was facing a national election on Thursday of this week after Socialist Worker went to press.

Stop the war activists prepare for new demo

There is a growing sense that the war in Afghanistan is heading for even greater disaster and cannot be won.

Royal Mail strikes: the stakes are rising

Royal Mail bosses are on the rampage against the CWU postal workers’ union, but they face growing resistance.

Stoke: indefinite post strike shakes the bosses

Over 100 postal workers at Stoke mail centre are taking all-out indefinite strike action.

Strike planned at First Bus in Aberdeen

Bus drivers, cleaners and garage staff employed by First Bus in Aberdeen were set to strike over pay for two hours from 3pm on Tuesday of this week.

Unofficial post strike in Wallasey

POSTAL workers in Wallasey have walked out on strike unofficially this week.

Latest Royal Mail attacks could lead to unofficial strike

Thousands of postal workers in London struck solidly today against management attempts to ram through changes that will lead to a mass cull of jobs and the undermining of the union.

Emergency protest: Benjamin Netanyahu visits London

Right wing Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu is coming to London to meet Gordon Brown.


Standing up to Roma oppression in Serbia

In downtown Belgrade, the Roma community’s settlements are under attack.


The media and Afghanistan

Against steadfast public opposition, the British government is attempting to rejuvenate its tired case for war this summer. As Operation Panther’s Claw was launched in Helmand, southern Afghanistan, this June the government went on an ideological offensive.

US right is telling unhealthy lies

The wonderful people who brought you the invasion of Iraq certainly took Joseph Goebbels’ principle of "the bigger the lie the better" to heart.


A food crisis?

If you have been unfortunate enough to listen to environment minister Hilary Benn over the past week you may have the impression that Britain is running out of food.

A View From The Foothills: The Diaries of Chris Mullin

If A socialist prime minister was ever elected the establishment would do everything it could to prevent any real change. That was the sensible premise of A Very British Coup, the novel by Sunderland Labour MP Chris Mullin.

The new strike wave shaking Egypt

Property tax collectors across Egypt converged on Hussein Hegazy Street in central Cairo on 11 August for a strike in protest at the finance minister’s refusal to honour a recent agreement to set up a welfare fund.


Win a CLR James cricket T-shirt

CLR James was a Marxist, anti-imperialist, pioneer of Pan-Africanism and author of one of the finest books ever written on cricket.

Pot Full Of Soul

While New York at the end of the 1960s was a city electrified by political dissent, riots and cultural fusion, many second generation Peurto Ricans, like Bobby Marin, were busy combining an impromptu version of baseball with street corner crooning.

BBC Proms 2009: 
Beethoven’s Fidelio

Daniel Barenboim is recognised as one of the greatest pianists and conductors alive.

Benefit Busters

"Why aren’t you all queuing up outside McDonald’s, Burger King and KFC if you all want a job so badly?"

Radio: Looking for class voices in the imaginary landscape

I’ve always listened to the radio. It seemed closer, more intimate than television, and you could read or cook while it was on. It seemed freer, too, because soundscapes have no dimensions except the ones you imagine.

What We Think

Other Categories

Andy Abel 1962-2009

It was with the deepest sadness and shock that the very many friends and comrades of Andy Abel learned of his sudden and untimely death of a heart attack.


Solidarity will win the Vestas workers’ fight When Luke, partner to my daughter Hannah, started a sit-in with his co-workers at Vestas, I was awe-struck by the show of solidarity locally, nationally and from around the world.

Quotes from the week's news

‘Some in Britain believe the fight is not worth it.’Defence secretary Bob Ainsworth bemoans "defeatism" on the home front

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