Dated: 17 Dec 2011
Search below by year or month.
Try our search to find a specific issue of Socialist Worker, or use the search at the top of the page to find a specific article.
It’s that time of year again—a magical season of charity and gift giving. And may I take this opportunity to thank you for all my wonderful gifts. I was particularly fond of my £64,000 designer kitchen, not to mention my £550,000 pension pot.
As the holiday season approaches, Socialist Worker asks readers to write to political prisoners and those who have suffered at the hands of the system.
Klaxons boomed across the frosty Essex morning last Friday, as lorry drivers showed their solidarity with workers picketing the Unilever plant in Purfleet.
Unilever’s miserly management has decided to punish workers for taking part in the strike.
Drivers and warehouse workers at retail giant Argos struck over pensions on Thursday of last week in Motherwell, near Glasgow.
There is a debate across the trade unions that joined the magnificent strike on 30 November about where the struggle goes next.
Unions and health workers have rejected the latest Tory attempts to rob their pensions.
Former Black Panther Mumia Abu-Jamal no longer faces the death penalty after 30 years on death row.
What is the "eurozone"?
The use of Britain’s veto at the European Union (EU) summit last week has triggered a huge row within the ruling class.
Fewer than one in ten people support the government’s cuts, according to the 28th annual British Social Attitudes Survey published in last week.
Teachers and support staff at Montgomery Primary School in Birmingham struck today, Tuesday, against their school becoming an academy.
The Tories have announced plans to close 39 local Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) offices. The announcement—just two weeks before Christmas—puts 1,200 jobs at risk.
A London Underground union branch held a special meeting last week with relatives of two black men who died in police custody.
Last week the Executive Council (EC) of Unite, Britain’s largest trade union, met in London.
Workers have rejected a below-inflation pay offer at Bentley Motors in Crewe.
Workers in the Unite union were set to vote this week on an improved pay offer at defence manufacturing firm Selex Galileo.
Around 100 people packed into Royston Civic Hall near Barnsley on Wednesday of last week to defend their fire station.
The government has set out more detail of the cuts it wants to make to firefighters’ pension scheme.
Victims of the Farepak savings scandal were set to take their fight for compensation to parliament on Wednesday of this week.
Steelworkers’ union Community has disgracefully agreed to a 50 percent pay cut for workers at steel firm Caparo Merchant Bar in Scunthorpe.
A pay freeze will go ahead at charity Action for Children after unions accepted a £60 per worker payment to call off strikes.
Up to 100 activists took to the streets outside Harley Medical Group in London on Saturday of last week.
NUT union members at Langdon School in Newham, east London, have voted to suspend further strikes and return to work on Wednesday of this week.
Rank and file electricians walked off jobs, protested and blocked roads in towns and cities across Britain on Wednesday of last week.
The employers are rattled by the unofficial strikes and protests. They made MJN Colston back off from breaking the JIB agreement.
Bosses at Balfour Beatty this week sent another letter to every electrician threatening to sack them if they don’t sign up to pay cuts.
Oasis Media City Teachers at Oasis Media City in Salford struck on Tuesday against plans to turn the school into an academy.
PCS union members in Revenue and Customs (HMRC) struck for several hours on Monday in two separate disputes.
The PCS DWP group executive committee met last Friday to discuss furthering the national campaign on pay, pensions and jobs, and also to discuss two separate disputes.
Teachers in sixth form colleges are preparing to be balloted over pay and cuts in government funding. The NUT union should begin the ballot in the new year.
Executive meetings of the University and College union have decided unanimously to escalate the current action around pensions in both the TPS and USS schemes.
The City is taking us to court from 19 to 23 December, and then we will know if we will be evicted. But it’s not over yet.
Postal workers on Merseyside walked out on unofficial strike last weekend.
RMT union members at the West of Scotland signalling centre have voted to strike by almost 80 percent. The dispute is over management unilaterally dropping longstanding promotion practices for staff.
Remploy workers and their supporters protested outside Huddersfield town hall, West Yorkshire, on Wednesday of last week, to demand that their factory stays open.
Over 100 workers from BAE’s manufacturing plant in Brough, east Yorkshire, were set to hold a lobby of parliament on Wednesday of this week.
Defend Council Housing held a national meeting last Saturday.
The shadowy network of strategists behind the English Defence League (EDL) ran out of hiding places this week.
The brother of murdered private detective Daniel Morgan has accused home secretary Theresa May of stonewalling.
The Tory MP who has been leading the charge against union facility time has been caught attending a Nazi-themed stag party.
The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) investigation into the shooting of Mark Duggan won’t be finished until April 2012.
Birmingham University has won a high court injunction against all occupation protests on its campus for the next 12 months.
There’s something missing from the report into the failure of RBS bank released this week—any real criticism of its boss.
The defence team in the trial of six Zimbabwe socialists resumed its cross-examination of the main prosecution witness last Monday.
Supporters and friends of Shaker Aamer held a vigil outside Downing Street last Saturday. He is the last British resident to be held in Guantanamo Bay, where he has been imprisoned for nearly ten years.
Protests on construction sites across Britain again turned into mass stay-aways today (Wednesday).
Workers at the mail centre in Truro in Cornwall walked out yesterday as they had not been paid. Every December, Royal Mail takes on casual workers to help sort the Christmas mail. These are typically students or the long-term unemployed. Workers in Truro complained to management when they were not paid on time at the end of last week.
Several thousand Congolese protesters thronged through central London on Wednesday afternoon, protesting at fraud in the recent presidential election. They started at the BBC near Oxford Circus, where they complained about a relative news blackout on election violence. They marched across the West End to Whitehall, chanting, "Kabila must go". The demonstrators say the Democratic Republic of Congo's (DRC) sitting president Joseph Kabila fixed the election to ensure he was re-elected and that his main opponent Etienne Tshisekedi was the real victor.
Veteran US civil rights activist Jesse Jackson joined with campaigners in London today (Thursday) to throw his weight behind calls for a public inquiry into deaths in police custody.
The great pensions fightback is in danger. Some trade union leaders – and the head of the TUC – are urging acceptance of a rotten deal that betrays the magnificent 30 November strike by 2.5 million workers.
A group of leading trade unionists have issued the following statement after reports of moves to end the present pensions dispute:
Down with the rule of the military criminals! The military junta, who are the sons of Mubarak in power, have added a new crime to their list of offences.
Demonstrate: 4pm, Saturday 17 December 2011, Egyptian Embassy, South Street, London W1K 1DW (nearest tubes Hyde Park Corner, Marble Arch).
The emergency lobby of the TUC tomorrow over pensions at 2pm is now backed by the London region of the UCU, East London NUT and NUT branches in Camden, Lewisham. Hackney, Lambeth, Ealing, Southwark, Merton and Greenwich.
Some 200 trade unionists and campaigners gathered in the rain outside the TUC's headquarters in central London this afternoon (Monday).
The government has tried to wipe out the revolt by millions of workers over pensions. But it has failed for now.
The Tories and their Lib Dem collaborators are crowing that they have won the pensions battle. But this afternoon also displayed the fragility of the deal, and the possibility it can be defeated.
In an extraordinary move, the Tories have provoked the local government unions into withdrawing from the agreement they reached yesterday. Unite, Unison and GMB have just issued the following statement:
Unite the Resistance (UtR) is backing a lobby of the TUC on Thursday 12 January, when union leaders meet to discuss the government’s pensions offer.
Further confusion broke out today (Wednesday) over possible deals on pensions as two unions – Unison and GMB – said they were "back on track" with a deal in local government, but Unite appeared not to be. And Unite general secretary Len McCluskey issued an "action alert" to the union’s members stressing that no deals had yet been done.
<iframe width="450" height="252" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/6xQtdANrfYA?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
Revolutionary socialist activists in Cairo warned yesterday that the latest round of the media attacks against them show there is an organised campaign to stop the revolution itself.
"Deeply worried" by strikes and riots – Thatcher lied over Irish hunger strikes – The secret war in Afghanistan – Arms to Egypt
The uprising in Syria took a dramatic turn on Sunday as workers held a general strike.
Hostilities between the US and Pakistan have dramatically escalated after a US airstrike killed 24 Pakistani soldiers last month.
Iranian forces claim they can reverse-engineer a US drone they captured earlier this month—and use it for their own purposes.
David Cameron met King Hamad bin Essa Al Khalifa, the ruler of Bahrain, at Downing Street on Monday.
Hundreds of protesters gathered to occupy Seoul in front of the Deoksu Palacein the capital on Monday. They came to express solidarity with the second global day of action called by the Occupy movement.
For Egypt’s military rulers, the revolution has come to an end. Elections now under way will, they say, produce a new government.
At least 80,000 people protested in Moscow last Saturday against the falsification of parliamentary election results.
Violence has erupted across the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) as it was announced last week that sitting president Joseph Kabila had won presidential elections.
A huge strike wave involving thousands of workers kicked off in Italy this week. The country’s three main union federations—the CGIL, CISL and UIL—joined together for their first united strikes for six years.
Members of the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) who were playing a leading role in the orchestrated campaign against the Revolutionary Socialists (RS) dramatically changed their position on Sunday.
State security prosecutors in Egypt are investigating the complaint brought by a leading Muslim Brotherhood lawyer against the Revolutionary Socialists (RS), according to the Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice newspaper.
The summit of European Union (EU) leaders last week marked a turning point in the development of the euro crisis. Their previous attempt to fix the crisis in late October ran out of steam just two days after it was agreed.
The United Nations climate talks in Durban, South Africa, have ended. Evil has been done on a scale that is hard to grasp.
‘If Africa is to be free we cannot beg. We must tear away by force what belongs to us. All forms of struggle must be adopted, not excluding violence." Those were the words of Frantz Fanon addressing an anti-colonial conference in Ghana in 1958.
Pierre Chaulet and Claudine Chaulet joined the struggle in Algeria in the early 1950s. They were part of a small group of Algerians of European origin who were committed to the revolution.
<a href="graphics/2011/keep/2283_08_09.pdf">Download full spread as pdf</a>
The theory that a bloodstain on the jacket of a man accused of murdering Stephen Lawrence was caused by contamination is "practically impossible", a court has heard.
Troops have killed some 60 demonstrators over the past six weeks during protests in Egypt’s capital city Cairo. Snipers stationed in buildings around Tahrir Square have shot activists in cold blood.
The ideological battle between Egypt’s ruling generals and the activists leading the struggle to deepen the revolution in the streets and workplaces has entered a new phase.
It started when young women in Alexandria planned a march against the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (Scaf). We had seen the shocking video of the girl stripped by the soldiers in Cairo—and every woman felt that she could have been that girl.
Time, it would seem, changes everything. Looking back to the Tottenham riots of 1985, David Lammy’s memories of its causes are as articulate as they are angry.
Six men went fishing. One of them was the captain and it was his boat. The five men caught ten fish.
The Stop the War Coalition has brought together some stunning images from over the past ten years in this new graphic history.
The phone hacking scandal gets the satirical treatment in this one-off comedy from writer Guy Jenkin.
Channel 4’s excellent season on the housing crisis finishes this week.
The Pope’s dead and a new one must be found. But what if God’s envoy on earth doesn’t want the job?
Goodbye Barcelona is a critically acclaimed new play at the Arcola Theatre in Dalston, London.
The robber barons of Europe have fallen out—but their rows are an expression of a much deeper crisis. They face the prospect of economic catastrophe.
Politicians from around the world last week gave up any attempt to stop global temperatures from rising more than 2 degrees Celsius.
The news of the writer Christopher Hitchens’s death fills my mind with contradictory images and feelings.
Nuclear power—it’s not safe and it’s not necessary George Monbiot used his Guardian column last week to attack the environmental movement.
‘Tinned goods and small calibre weapons’