Socialist Worker

Africa


South African workers in key battle

20 July 2002
OVER 100,000 South African council workers started their second week on all-out strike on Tuesday. They are fighting for a minimum wage of £150 a month. At present the minimum wage is £125 a month.

Peanuts won't solve poverty

06 July 2002
WHAT DID the leaders of the Group of Eight (G8) leading industrial countries do last week while they skulked behind massive police protection at Kananaskis, deep in the Canadian Rockies? The British government had been busily briefing that they would deliver the "Marshall Plan for Africa" that Tony Blair promised at the disastrous G8 summit in Genoa last year.

Socialists are beaten and jailed

22 June 2002
MORE THAN 70 people were arrested and beaten in Harare, Zimbabwe, last weekend. They were taking part in a peaceful commemoration of the Soweto anti-apartheid uprising in South Africa in 1976. Socialist MP Munyaradzi Gwisai, who is due to speak at Marxism 2002 in London, was singled out for special treatment by the riot police. He was severely beaten and needed urgent medical treatment.

The rage that threatens the US grip on oil

27 April 2002
ISRAEL'S WAR on the Palestinians is spreading convulsions across the Arab world. Popular outrage from Morocco, on the Atlantic coast of North Africa, to Jordan, in the heart of the Middle East, is pouring out against the US and Israel. More worrying for the corrupt rulers of the Arab regimes, anger on university campuses and on the streets is turning against them too. This is all taking place in a region which the world's most powerful state, the US, sees as vital to its global domination.

Zimbabwe: hypocrisy and tyranny

23 March 2002
WITH BREATHTAKING gall, George W Bush last week declared that the election in Zimbabwe was a "flawed process". He added, "We do not recognise the outcome of this election." Only a man as stupid and arrogant as Bush could criticise the vote a year after he stole the US presidential election.

Femi Kuti - Fight to Win

23 March 2002
The latest album by Nigerian musician Femi Kuti and his band Positive Force has it all-politically and musically. The title track is a rallying cry all socialists will applaud. "Fight To Win" addresses the endless suffering of the African masses, and Femi sees the struggles of the people as a positive action.

Only struggle can win real freedom

16 March 2002
The only certainty about politics in Zimbabwe is that there is a stormy time ahead. Socialist Worker went to press before any voting figures had been announced for the presidential election. Whatever result is finally announced will be hotly contested by the losing side.

Zimbabwe - What's at stake in the election?

09 March 2002
Zimbabweans will vote for a president on Saturday and Sunday. They face a choice between Robert Mugabe's brutal regime and the Movement for Democratic Change's Morgan Tsvangirai. The MDC contains good trade unionists and socialists, but is dominated by businessmen and white landowners.

Double standards over democracy in Africa

02 March 2002
Zimbabwe's security forces have continued their attacks on opposition candidates ahead of the presidential election scheduled for 9 and 10 March. The police fired shots at a convoy carrying opposition leaders to a rally. Five people were injured when government backed activists attacked the offices of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change in the town of KweKwe.

General strike in Madagascar

23 February 2002
Huge street protests and a two-week general strike have shut banks and businesses in many parts of Madagascar.

EU is not a friend in fight for democracy

23 February 2002
EUROPEAN UNION (EU) leaders imposed sanctions against Zimbabwe this week and withdrew election observers. Nobody should believe the EU is a friend of democracy in Africa or anywhere else. The EU says it is outraged by President Mugabe's refusal to allow monitors in to watch over the presidential election scheduled for 9-10 March.

Stop the war

16 February 2002
Over 70 people went to a teach-in against the war at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London last Saturday. The event was called by the Stop the War Coalition. It attracted a new audience of people who have just started to get involved in opposing the war.

Africans don't want lectures from Blair

16 February 2002
"We want people in Britain to know the truth about Tony Blair's 'welcome' in West Africa. In Ghana a planned protest against Blair was not allowed under security laws. Yet, despite very short notice, hundreds of people crammed into a rally to speak out against his visit.

Message from World Social Forum in Porto Alegre, Brazil: 'We know another world is possible'

16 February 2002
The demonstration was supposed to begin at 5pm in Porto Alegre's market square. There were groups with banners at various corners, but they seemed dispersed and separate. But at seven that evening, when the summer showers had ended, 40,000 people flowed into a single column. They were young, old, black, white, men, women, Latin Americans, Africans, and a European contingent that included 1,500 Italians full of the enthusiastic spirit of Genoa.

Trading under African skies

16 February 2002
Tony Blair has been strutting around abroad again, posing as the saviour of the world. This time Africa has been the victim of his attentions. When Blair pledged to "reorder the world" at the Labour Party conference last October he claimed to have Africa especially in his sights. He called the continent a "scar on the conscience of the world".

Arms sales to Africa

09 February 2002
The newspapers have been full of Tony Blair's forthcoming visit to Africa. A new report from the Campaign Against the Arms Trade has found that the value of British arms sales to Africa is set to quadruple over the next year. African nations spent £52 million on arms deals with British firms in 1999.

Why Mugabe is brutal

19 January 2002
POOR ZIMBABWE. One of the richest countries in Africa, it is now in economic freefall. Closely interwoven with this is the political crisis pitting the government of President Robert Mugabe and his ZANU-PF party against the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC).

US threatens new targets

12 January 2002
PEOPLE IN the poor African country of Somalia feared this week that they were to become the latest targets in the US "war on terror". The US, and key allies Britain and France, have increased surveillance flights to four or five a day over Somalia in the last week.

Stop the War protest

15 December 2001
A thousand people marched in Birmingham last Saturday against the war. The march was organised by Birmingham Trades Council and supported by the Stop the War Coalition. A rally heard speakers from a range of organisations and campaigns. Later Artists Against the War held an inspiring social with African drummers and visual projections.

Against the war

08 December 2001
Over 150 people packed out the debate on the war in Afghanistan organised by the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) Stop the War group last week. Guardian columnist Polly Toynbee and writer on the Independent David Aaronovitch presented their pro-war position.

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