National News

The price of capitalism

by Caroline Colebrook

THE NUMBER of unemployed workers in Britain increased to 2.44 million in June, according to official figures released last Wednesday - a rise of 220,000 on the previous month and the highest figure since 1995. It takes the jobless rate to 7.8 per cent.

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Anti-nuclear union link

LAST WEEK the world marked the 64th anniversary of the use of Atom Bombs on Japan - Hiroshima (6th August 1945) and Nagasaki (9th August 1945) - and on Sunday the TUC linked up with Japanese unions to ask UK workers in Britain to sign a global petition asking the United Nations to abolish nuclear weapons.

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Royal Mail workers ballot for national strike

THE LONG-RUNNING dispute between the Royal Mail and members of the Communication Workers’ Union, which has led to a series of regional strikes, may go national as CWU members are now being balloted for national strike action.

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Vestas sit-in ends in defiance

THE LONG occupation of the Vestas wind turbine factory on the Isle of Wight by workers protesting at plans to close the plant - with the loss of 625 jobs - ended last Friday as bailiffs moved in.

But the workers put up a final show of defiance. Two workers abseiled from the factory, while another leapt from a balcony into some bushes.

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Stop attacking workers’ savings

THE GMB general union is calling for a nationwide campaign to defend workers’ pensions and has prepared a motion for next month’s TUC conference: “Stop Attacks on Workers Saving for Decent Incomes in Retirement”.

The union says is time for politicians, the media, employers and the pensions industry to stop undermining workers’ savings.he union goes on strike.

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Rabbit hutches

FAMILIES living in newly built private housing often find it hard to cook properly or find room to put their furniture because kitchens and rooms are so cramped, according to a survey published last week by the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment (Cabe).

The Government’s watchdog says that many houses being built privately today are “not fit for purpose” and have warned of a prospect of “rabbit hutch Britain”.

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Wales remembers atom bomb victims

by Ray Davies

CARDIFF commemorated Nagasaki Day with songs and flowers, as members of CND Cymru, Côr Cochion and Bristol Red Notes joined forces to remember the first victims of nuclear war.

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Unite responds to Diageo

TWENTY THOUSAND people marched last month through Kilmarnock to send a message of protest to the multinational drinks company Diageo over plans to close the local Johnny Walker whisky plant, with the loss of 900 jobs.

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Fascists plan anti-Muslim violence

A GROUP of fascist thugs calling themselves the English Welsh Defence League (EWDL) clashed with anti-fascists last Saturday in Birmingham leading to 35 arrests.

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Londongrad: The oligarchs playground

Londongrad: From Russia with Cash: The Inside Story of the Oligarchs by Mark Hollingsworth & Stewart Lansley, Fourth Estate, £12.99.

MANY Russian oligarchs come to London to enjoy their wealth. They call this city Londongrad. Russia’s richest men buy land, estates and yachts for millions and millions of pounds and their lives are depicted in a new book published in Britain.

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Features and International News

‘Agricolonialism’ in developing countries

by Betsey Piette

COLLECTIVELY the countries which participate in the Group of Twenty comprise 85 percent of the global gross national product, 80 percent of world trade and two-thirds of the world’s population. What many G-20 countries lack, however, is sufficient arable land to meet the needs of growing urban populations.

In recent years, many G-20 nations have engaged in agricolonialism, taking over arable land in developing countries.

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Selling to the kids

Rob Gowland

THERE is a programme on Australian television this week, Consuming Kids: The Commercialisation Of Childhood, that contains a wealth of interesting - and in many cases, shocking - statistics. For instance, did you know that children in the USA (children, not adults) spend some $40 billion a year.

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Typhoon lashes China

Xinhua news agency

AT LEAST one child was killed and millions more hit as Typhoon Morakot slammed into Chinese provinces on the eastern coast on Sunday, destroying houses and inundating farmlands. Typhoon Morakot forced the evacuation of nearly a million people in two coastal east China provinces. More than 490,000 residents of Zhejiang and more than 505,000 from Fujian have been relocated to safety and over 35,000 ships have been called back from sea.

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New Fatah leadership faces serious challenges

by Saud Abu Ramadan in Bethlehem

THE NEW leaders elected by President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah Party’s congress are reformists and they seem to be different from their old guard predecessors. But they will still face serious challenges in the future from the rival Hamas movement as well as Israel.

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Honduran protesters march on capital

Radio Havana Cuba

TENS OF thousands of marchers are converging on the Honduran capital of Tegucigalpa as well as the country’s second largest city, San Pedro Sula, in a huge national protest against the fascist military regime. The National March of Popular Resistance, which began on 5th August has covered hundreds of kilometres, down mountainous roads and into the Central American countries’ two major cities.

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The worst crime in history

Radio Havana Cuba

SIXTY-FOUR years after Hiroshima the United States continues to be the main threat to peace. On the morning of 6th August 1945, the worst crime in the history of humanity was carried out, when - by order of then-US President Harry S Truman - an atomic bomb was dropped on the civilian Japanese city of Hiroshima.

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