Socialist Worker


'You can talk socialism for seven days'

22 June 2002
IN TWO weeks one of the biggest and most exciting gatherings of socialists in Europe will take place at the Marxism 2002 event in central London. Several thousand people attended last year's event.

Refugees are not 'swamping' here

22 June 2002
THE WAR against refugees intensified again this week. Home secretary David Blunkett welcomed the election of a Tory government in France because he believes it will crack down on asylum seekers. Tony Blair is meeting European leaders at Seville to organise warships to sink refugee boats. He also wants European states to slash aid to the poor countries that refugees flee from.

Peter Hain's young critic

22 June 2002
EUROPE MINISTER Peter Hain has shocked many Labour supporters by his harsh words about immigration and asylum. He claimed, "Muslim immigrants can be very isolationist and need to integrate more." He implied they bring racist attacks on themselves. Some 27 years ago a young firebrand wrote an essay to denounce this type of pandering to racists' ideas:

Seville shows two faces of Europe

22 June 2002
SEVILLE IN Spain sees the two different faces of Europe this week. Tony Blair and other European leaders are meeting to force through even tougher legislation to victimise those seeking refuge from war and famine. Blair is at the heart of a right wing axis. Downing Street has leapt in to dub right wing French president Jacques Chirac "a man we can work with", as he plans huge tax cuts for the rich and an assault on French workers.

Is Europe turning towards the right?

15 June 2002
IS THE tide of history flowing to the right? The claim is put forward by politicians like Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith, and echoed by a growing number of commentators. Four years ago Labour-type parties were in government in 13 of the 15 European Union (EU) countries.

European Social Forum

08 June 2002
OVER 100 elected reps from branches of the Unison union in the south west of England met in Gloucester last week at the union's regional council. They voted overwhelmingly to support the European Social Forum. Representatives at the the regional council also agreed to send a delegation to Florence in Italy from 7 to 10 November.

Warm days in Seville in June

08 June 2002
THE 500,000-strong demonstration against a Europe of capital and war in Barcelona in March was a milestone in the anti-capitalist movement that has swept the world since Seattle in 1999. It showed that the movement had not declined after 11 September, but was stronger than ever.

US fear of wider protests

01 June 2002
MASS protests greeted US president George W Bush as he began his tour of Europe last week. Over 100,000 people demonstrated in the German capital, Berlin, on Tuesday. The following day 50,000 marched.

All roads lead to Florence in autumn

25 May 2002
THE EUROPEAN Social Forum will be a massive gathering of activists from many different movements. It will be held in the Italian city of Florence from 7 to 10 November this year. The alliance between Tony Blair, Spanish leader Aznar and Italian prime minister Berlusconi aims to drive Europe further to the right.

How can the far right advance be halted?

25 May 2002
THE DUTCH general election saw the latest frightening advance for the far right in Europe. The party of Pim Fortuyn came second. The Labour Party, which had led a coalition government for eight years, got its worst result since 1945. That came after the Nazi Jean-Marie Le Pen beat the leader of France's equivalent of the Labour Party, Lionel Jospin, in the first round of the presidential election there.

Gathering for a better future

18 May 2002
IF YOU are against globalisation and war, and for freedom and justice, you should be planning to come to the European Social Forum (ESF). The forum will be held in Florence from 7 to 10 November. The ESF looks set to be one of the biggest and most exciting anti-capitalist events of the year. It is going to be a huge assembly for everyone who is against neo-liberalism and war.

Peter Hain sinks into the gutter with the scapegoaters

18 May 2002
EUROPE MINISTER Peter Hain is the latest politician to claim that the way to fight the racists is to accept some of their central arguments. Hain built his reputation as an opponent of apartheid. But in interviews on TV and in the Guardian at the beginning of the week he pandered to racist ideas. He claimed, "It's really, really important that we have an honest debate about immigration and asylum." But he then went on to repeat one of the biggest lies of the lot-that some countries are a "soft touch".

A week debating all the key issues on the left

18 May 2002
Marxism 2002 will be one of the biggest left wing events in Europe this year. At Marxism we will be discussing all the issues thrown up by the political crises of recent months, in over 200 meetings and forums. From what fascism is to imperialism and war, from the relevance of Marxism today to revolution in Latin America, we will be looking at the big debates facing the left.

Hain, Morris and the porn broker

18 May 2002
BLAME THE victims-that's New Labour's response to the rise of the far right and Nazis across Europe. On issue after issue, New Labour ministers are adopting reactionary ideas and turning the screws on the poor and the vulnerable. Education secretary Estelle Morris was crowing with delight when lone parent Patricia Amos was jailed for 60 days.

Unity that turned the fascist tide

11 May 2002
HITLER HAD been in power for 12 months. The strongest working class movement in the world lay shattered beneath his feet. Fascists were gaining ground across Europe. The world was mired in economic slump, which brought with it mass unemployment and wage cuts.

A week debating all the key issues on the left

11 May 2002
Marxism 2002 will be one of the biggest left wing events in Europe this year. At Marxism we will be discussing all the issues thrown up by the political crises of recent months, in over 200 meetings and forums.

The centre cannot hold

04 May 2002
JEAN-MARIE Le Pen's surprise success in the first round of the French presidential elections must be seen in a larger context. There is not simply the growth of the far right throughout Europe, but also a larger process of class polarisation that has been going on for at least the last decade.

French shockwave sweeping Europe

27 April 2002
"EARTHQUAKE"-that was how French newspapers reacted to Jean-Marie Le Pen's success in the presidential elections. He came second with more votes than Lionel Jospin, the equivalent of Tony Blair. Le Pen is a Nazi. He described the Holocaust and the murder of six million Jews as a mere "detail of history".

Time to unite with Chirac?

27 April 2002
It is not just ordinary people who have been shocked by the French election result. Establishment politicians across Europe too have been shaken. These politicians agree the only solution to the danger of Le Pen is to unite behind Tory candidate Jacques Chirac in the election run-off on 5 May. Chirac is almost certain to be elected.

Expose the BNP Nazis

06 April 2002
A major challenge faces every anti-fascist and anti-racist. Nazis from Nick Griffin's British National Party are desperate to secure a breakthrough in the local council elections on 2 May. They want to emulate their counterparts in Europe, where Nazis have won seats in council and European parliamentary elections.

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