Socialist Worker

Socialist Worker

Issue: 2303

Dated: 19 May 2012

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'We will defy the bankers' - Greek workers speak out

Greece is in the bankers’ firing line. But ordinary workers are rejecting austerity.

International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other


Prison officers' walkout adds to Tories' crisis

Prison officers across Britain are taking unofficial action over pensions today, Thursday, walking out on the same day as the public sector strikes.

Caravan for climate jobs sets off

Climate campaigners gathered in London and Edinburgh yesterday (Saturday) to wave off the Caravan for a Million Climate Jobs on its tour of Britain.

Rochdale sex abuse is nothing to do with race

Nine men from Rochdale in the north west of England were jailed last week after being found guilty of sexually exploiting young girls.

Rochdale: Media distortion will put women in danger and will only benefit racists

When Children’s minister Tim Loughton was asked about the Rochdale abuse trial, he said, "Political correctness and racial sensitivities have in the past been an issue."

Teachers gear up to strike against forced academies

The Tories have given 90 percent of academy schools too much money. That’s the startling finding of an investigation by the Financial Times newspaper.

We defend abortion rights for all

Right wing newspapers splashed another abortion scare story over their pages this week.

Occupy protesters march on the Bank of England

More than 300 people came to Occupy London’s "Meet the 1 percent" demonstration last Saturday.

Solidarity stalls follow EDL attack

Some 50 people with numerous campaign stalls gathered for a solidarity day in Lewisham, south east London, on Saturday of last week.

College lecturers could call action

The UCU lecturers’ union was set to meet management at Chesterfield College on Wednesday of this week.

Class conference clarifies crisis

Up to 200 people attended a conference on Crisis, Class and Resistance hosted by the International Socialism Journal in London last Saturday.

New evidence in murder appeal

Sam Hallam, who has been imprisoned since 2004, will have his case reviewed in the Court of Appeal this week.

Housing Emergency protest planned

Minister for welfare reform Lord Freud is set to justify the cuts he is driving through to housing benefit to an audience on Wednesday of next week.

School strike wins results

Teaching and support staff at Central Foundation Girls' School in Bow, east London struck for a second time on Friday of last week.

Battle over pay at Chester Council

Workers at Cheshire West and Chester council struck last weekend in their continuing battle over unsociable hours pay.

London's bus workers to ballot for Olympic strikes

Over 20,000 bus workers at 21 London operators are set to be balloted for industrial action from Thursday of this week in a dispute over Olympic bonus payments.

Tube worker attacked by racist—then sacked

The RMT union has launched a campaign to defend Dayna Nembhard, a tube station assistant who has been sacked after eight years in the job.

Rail workers round-up

Train signal workers in Stirling struck for 24 hours on Wednesday of last week.

NHS round-up

St Mary’s, Portsmouth Tory Health secretary Andrew Lansley cancelled his visit to St Mary’s hospital in Portsmouth at the last minute on Thursday of last week.

Tanker drivers' dispute ended by narrow vote

Oil tanker drivers in the Unite union effectively ended their dispute at seven haulage companies last week, voting by a narrow margin to accept an offer from bosses.

MMP workers fighting for justice

Workers sacked by Mayr Melnhof Packaging (MMP) in Bootle, Merseyside, are protesting at the firm’s clients and partners as part of their campaign for justice. They are members of the Unite union.

Strikes closed defence sites down on 10 May

There were almost 150 Unite and PCS union members on the noisy picket lines at the Ministry of Defence base in Donnington near Telford.

'Our fight is for the NHS'

Health workers in the Unite union won support for their strike after massive anger at the Tories’ NHS privatisation bill.

Don't let the authorities deport Toma to Bulgaria

A leading Roma activist based in Britain is facing extradition to Bulgaria—where his life will be in danger from racists.

Trayvon Martin's parents visit Britain

Double win for Glasgow refugee campaigners

Campaigners for refugees in Glasgow scored two successes last week. Angeline Pirira Mwafulirwa and her children were released from custody after being arrested in a dawn raid.

Nato bombs killed civilians in Libya

A report has exposed some of the horrors of Nato’s bombing campaign on Libya last year.

Tories' panic mounts as Cameron's chum Rebekah Brooks charged

Tory Prime minister David Cameron’s close friends are to be charged with perverting the course of justice.

Queen's speech unveils more attacks on workers

The queen’s speech has unveiled the Tories’ plans for the year. Fury at the bankers forced the government to pretend to get tough on the rich—but they were really dancing to the tune of big business.

Caravan for a Million Jobs tour sets off for climate jobs

The Campaign Against Climate Change Caravan for a Million Jobs has started a two week tour of Britain. It is demanding jobs to solve both unemployment and climate change.

Basildon Council's fake fraud case

Basildon Council used fake evidence to accuse a single mother Mandy Barratt for benefit fraud. It claimed it received a phone call reporting her, but it has emerged that this never happened. The investigation was really triggered by a news article.

Tories snatch kids' support

The Tories announced plans to give parents of children with special educational needs more "choice" in support. This is part of the cuts agenda. It will snatch support from hundreds of thousands of children who need it.

Firm pays Tory MP for access

Tory MP Patrick Mercer, chairman of a parliamentary group on security, got almost £10,000 from security firm Clearwater, it has been revealed.

Olympics torch relay keeps Hitler's Nazi flame burning

The Olympic torch 70-day relay across Britain is being heralded as a moment for celebration.

Bosses' pay rockets

There has been some gnashing of teeth in the City over news that executive bonuses may fall slightly this year. But they’ll still reach a predicted total of £2.3 billion.

iPads all round for cost-cutting MPs

More good news for MPs. After a "successful trial", all 650 members of parliament are to be given free iPads. The Commons has started a "rapid rollout" of the gadgets at a cost of up to £429,000.

CIA has been caught with its pants down over underpants bomber

The CIA claims it "foiled" an underwear bomb plot by seizing the bomb. But its pants are smouldering.

Police taser man with Alzheimer's

Police fired tasers at a man with Alzheimer’s—after they were called out to help take him to hospital.

Know your enemy: Mitt Romney

Mitt RomneyUS Republican presidential candidate

Poor get ill 15 years earlier than the rich

Elderly People living in the poorest places get ill up to 15 years earlier than those in wealthy areas, a study shows.

Nurses jeer at Andrew Lansley's lies

Delegates at the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) conference jeered in derision at health minister Andrew Lansley last week.

Welfare reforms will kick 500,000 off disability benefits

The Tories’ welfare reforms will kick half a million disabled people off benefits—according to the government’s own figures.

Global protests planned as Nato meets in Chicago

Nato leaders are preparing to gather in Chicago on Sunday for a two day conference on the ongoing conflict in Afghanistan.

Anti-war protesters rally outside US embassy

Several hundred protesters rallied outside the US embassy in London today, Saturday, as Nato leaders met in Chicago to discuss the ongoing "war on terror".


Focus on Syria: 'Assad’s attempt to crush the resistance has failed'

The Syrian revolution is moving along several different tracks.

Palestinian hunger strikers force Israel to climb down

A hunger strike by more than 2,000 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails came to an end on Tuesday of this week.

Breivik survivors give testimony

Five survivors of fascist killer Anders Behring Breivik’s rampage gave testimony during his trial in Norway this week.

Afghan guns turn against occupiers

Almost one in seven Nato soldiers killed in Afghanistan are shot by the Afghan personnel they are meant to be training to "take over security" when the occupiers leave.

Quebec protests force resignation

Students protesting against tuition fee hikes in Quebec, Canada, chalked up a victory on Monday of this week.

Workers in Greece say no to parties of austerity

The mass vote to reject austerity has sparked Greece's biggest political crisis for years.

Greece left vote could surge again

Greece’s ruling class has every reason to be worried about new elections.

Spain's indignados make a return to the streets

The streets of the Spanish state echoed with opposition to banks and calls for "real democracy" last Saturday as the indignados (outraged) marked the first anniversary of their 15 May movement.

Russia's first Occupy protest builds opposition to Putin

Hundreds of anti-government protesters have been camping out in central Moscow for over a week, in Russia’s first occupy protest.


The politics of the rising European left

Europe's political leadership is bankrupt. This is true literally, as we can see with the latest stage of the banking crisis unfolding in Spain. If the eurozone continues to unravel, there simply won’t be enough money to save it.

After 10 May: where next for the pensions dispute?

May Day came late for hundreds of thousands of public sector workers. Nine days to be precise.


Egypt: Faith in the revolt

During a march last week, a young comrade I know from Cairo University approached me— a medical student who was among the field hospital doctors during the Ministry of Defence (MoD) sit-in.

Socialists and Islamists: We're on the same side... sometimes

On some issues we will find ourselves on the same side as the Islamists against imperialism and the state. This was true, for instance, in many countries during the second Gulf War.

Public sector strikers on 10 May say: 'We're going to keep up pensions fight'

Hundreds of thousands of public sector workers struck on Thursday of last week against Tory attacks on their pensions.


Taking a walk on the wild side: Michael Rosen on Maurice Sendak

Maurice Sendak, who died last week, was one of those very few people working outside of major corporations who produce artworks that become part of the shared knowledge of millions.

Superpower: Africa in Science Fiction - vision warp time and space

Science fiction has had an awkward relationship with Africa. Many science fiction themes, from zombies to aliens, have their roots in Western fears about the "dark continent".

TV: 24 Hours in A&E

This award winning documentary about daily life in an NHS hospital returns for a second season this week on Channel 4.

Theatre: Posh

Laura wade’s play is based on the Bullingdon Club—the aristocratic drinking society that David Cameron and Boris Johnson both attended at Oxford university.

Top 5 DVDs

The Black Power Mixtape 1967-1975Göran Olsson’s documentary of the Black Power movementWe Were HereSearing account of the impact of Aids on 1980s San FranciscoThe Great Grunwick Strike 1976-1978Chris Thomas’s 2007 film about the seminal disputeSylvia Pankhurst: Everything is possibleCeri Dingle’s documentary on the socialist and suffragistBalfour BeatenVideo activists Reel News on the recent electricians’ victory

What We Think

Leaders have no cure for this sick system

World leaders are spending a lot of their time in summits whilst they are in the grip of an economic crisis they cannot solve.

Greek Golden Dawn Nazis: a warning from history

Nikolaos Mihaloliakos, leader of Greece’s fascist Golden Dawn party, is using the publicity he has gained since the Greek elections to deny the Nazi Holocaust.

Other Categories

Phil Corddell 1953–2012

Phil Corddell, a south London trade unionist and anti-racist activist, died last month.

Tim's view


Thanks for all your support, now let’s build the radical left We’d like to take this opportunity to thank all our friends and comrades from across the country who helped our recent election campaign in Preston.

Who says?

‘A tempest in a teapot’

IPCC: is it time to put down the police's pet watchdog?

The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) is under constant criticism for failing to seriously investigate police crime.

Bitter cops on the march show no interest in unity

There were 30,000 cops and one Socialist Worker journalist. The march against police cuts on Thursday of last week wasn’t pleasant.

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