Socialist Worker


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JFK: a true precedent of a president?

"DADDY, DO you think Nixon did it?"

Our movement can topple Bush and Blair

TONY BLAIR and George Bush hoped the state visit of the US president to Britain this week would be a victory parade in the wake of their war on Iraq. Instead the scale of the protests turned the visit into a siege. The two warmongers were forced to cancel planned parades and speeches. They were to hide behind huge numbers of police, totally cut off from any contact with ordinary people.

US bombs again and calls it reconstruction

US WARPLANES dropped 500-pound bombs and fired heavy artillery rounds in the Iraqi city of Tikrit last Friday. Each of those bombs was far bigger than those used to resist the occupation forces by Iraqis labelled as "terrorists" by the US and British.

Words are shaped by the times

If you study literature in school or university, you can easily get lulled into the notion that novels, poems, and plays live in a world of their own.

Learn the lessons from this great strike

REMEMBER THE postal workers! That should be the response whenever someone says it is impossible to beat the employers or the anti-union laws. We can all learn from the way the strike won.

Why the US wants to run the world

SEVENTY FIVE percent of people across Europe now believe the war against Iraq was wrong.

Class divide concentrated behind bars

MOUNTJOY WOMEN'S prison in Dublin is a modern institution. Built three years ago to house 90 women prisoners, it is known as the Dochas Centre (Dochas is the Irish language word for hope).

Tories' best leader is already in No 10

THERE'S A simple reason why the Tories are doing each other in with the ferocity of a Quentin Tarantino movie. Tony Blair is doing everything a Conservative prime minister would dream of, and more. What hope is there for the toffs and toadies of the Tory party when they find their nasty measures already inflicted by a Labour government? Much more importantly, what hope is there for millions of working people who feel utterly betrayed?

Why does Blair stand by his man?

ONE OF the most common questions that people ask me is, "Why did Tony Blair go so far in backing George W Bush's war on Iraq?" It's not hard to tell a story about US interests, but what's in it for Britain? An important part of the answer lies in the long term strategy that the British ruling class has pursued ever since the Second World War. By attaching itself closely to the mighty US, Britain could continue play a role as a global power.

Bee with a nasty sting

LET'S FACE it. The English language is crazy. There is neither apple nor pine in pineapple, nor ham in hamburger. Sweetmeats are confectionery. Sweetbreads, which definitely aren't sweet, are meat. We take English for granted. But if we explore its contradictions, we find that quicksand can work slowly, boxing rings are square and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig.

New Labour sinks to new depths

HOW MUCH lower can New Labour go? Millions of people in the anti-war and trade union movements must be asking this question as the Labour Party drags George Galloway, the MP most associated with the anti-war movement, before a kangaroo court.

We need to stay on the streets

WE ARE living in an era of intense political mobilisation. Over the past two years London has witnessed a succession of great mass demonstrations that belong to a far larger tapestry of global protest.

The Anglican Church is a mass of tensions

The dilemmas of Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, were beautifully summed up in an interview he gave last weekend. In an interview with John Humphrys on the Today programme, Williams came close to saying that the war against Iraq had been immoral. Then, terrified by the implication of this statement, Williams' officials demanded that this portion of the interview should not be broadcast – and the BBC agreed.

Debate is growing over left alternative

TAWDRY, CORRUPT, opportunist and right wing. That's the way all the major parties look this week. Tony Blair, as part of the much bigger lies about the Iraq war, denied that he had any hand in "outing" Dr David Kelly's name to the press. Yet on Monday Sir Kevin Tebbit, Britain's top civil servant, said, "The decision was taken at the meeting in Number Ten at a meeting chaired by the prime minister."

'Victory' boasts have faded away

SIX MONTHS after the fall of Baghdad, the conquerors of Iraq are in trouble on both sides of the Atlantic. Tony Blair's difficulties are well known, but now it is the turn of George W Bush and his advisers to come under the spotlight.

Something is rotten in the state of Blair

THERE'S A scene in Shakespeare's Hamlet where Hamlet walks in on the man who has corrupted the state of Denmark, the king. The problem for Hamlet is that the king is praying.

Private care homes are past caring

Earlier this year I dropped out of university after a period of illness and found myself in this new era of "near full employment" working in the private service sector.

We deserve better than Gordon Brown

TONY BLAIR got his standing ovation on Tuesday at the Labour Party conference. But that won't be enough to deal with the disgust and disquiet millions of Labour voters feel at what his government has done at home, and abroad. The disquiet even found some reflection in other parts of Labour's conference. And Blair's invocation of Margaret Thatcher's "I'm not for turning" speech, and his threat of even harsher treatment for refugees, will fuel the anger against him.

Beethoven's cry of freedom

MENTION CLASSICAL music to many people and it is an instant turn off. So probably not that many Socialist Worker readers would instinctively tune in to watch a BBC programme due to be broadcast this Saturday (9.15pm, BBC2) dedicated to the Third Symphony by the composer Beethoven. Yet that is precisely what I recommend you do, because Beethoven's music is above all about struggle and freedom.

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