National News

Workers blocked from science careers

by Caroline Colebrook

THE RULING class in Britain is entrenching its position through the secondary education system which is making it increasingly difficult for working class young people to get the kind of qualifications that could lead them to positions of influence and wealth.

According to Professor Alan Smithers of the Centre for Education and Employment Research at Buckingham University, the pressure of the schools league table system has led to scores of state schools in working l harder A-level subjects: maths, the sciences, geography and so on.

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Airport workers vote for strikes

MEMBERS of the giant union Unite last week voted for strike action in anger at a proposed zero per cent pay rise this year - and were promptly followed by their colleagues at Gatwick and Stansted, who also voted for strike action.

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Protesters’ drive the BNP from Derbyshire’

From New Worker Correspondent in Derbyshire

THE NEO-Nazi British national Party is considering moving its annual Red White and Blue festival for next year from the farm it has used for the past few years, probably to somewhere in the south of England, after successful anti-fascist protests at the festival two weeks ago in Codnor, Derbyshire.

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Council fails to grasp dispute solution

THE GMB general union has accused Leeds City Council of “failing to grasp the solution” in a dispute where refuse workers are facing a pay cuts of over £5,000-a-year.

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Naming the dead of Afghanistan

STOP the War campaigners gathered around Lewisham Clock Tower in south London last Saturday to mark the death toll of British troops serving in the futile and illegal war in Afghanistan passing 200.

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Jobless by the sea

ENGLAND’S most traditional seaside resorts have seen unemployment rates increase in the last 12 months in spite of the resurgence of the “staycation”, TUC analysis of official statistics reveals today (Friday).

The Office of National Statistics (ONS) revealed last week that five million Brits have abandoned their annual foreign holiday due to the credit crunch, choosing instead to holiday in Britain.

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Major victory over Tube job security

THE TRANSPORT union RMT last week welcomed a major breakthrough in an on-going dispute with London Underground which will see the company sticking to agreed policies on redundancies, protecting the futures of a thousand staff who had been identified as being at risk.

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Recession not over

THE INSTITUTE of Chartered Accountants last week declared the recession was at an end but their optimism has been rendered ridiculous by new announcements of swingeing jobs cuts.

The electronics giant Fujitsu last week announced its intention to cut 1,200 jobs in Britain because of the economic downturn.

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Leeds blood service cuts ‘threaten’ patient care

PATIENT care in West Yorkshire could be under threat if plans for swingeing cuts to the blood service in Leeds go ahead, the giant union Unite has warned.

Unite has asked the National Blood Service (NBS) to rescind plans to axe 45 staff in donor testing and records in November, with a further 40 redundancies in the blood processing unit by May next year.

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BT cuts graduate entry scheme

BRITISH Telecom last week announced that it will close its graduate recruitment scheme as part of a general cost-cutting programme as business continues to decline.

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Features and International News

US imperialist policy toward Africa revealed

by Abayomi Azikiwe Editor, Pan-African News Wire

THERE WAS much anticipation on the African continent about Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s 11-day recent visit to seven countries. But the tour’s outcome largely reaffirmed the continuance of past US policy toward Africa.

President Barack Obama has a direct connection to the East African nation of Kenya. African heads of state hope that this historic link will inspire the administration to look more seriously at US foreign policy towards Africa.

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Sex workers rights - a ‘queer’ perspective

by Thierry Schaffauser GMB Sex Work and Entertainment Branch

WHEN THE sex workers’ movement was born in the 1970s it was women only and most of them were identified as straight. It is only in the last few years that more and more trans and male sex workers have been involved in the movement and that activists have brought new ideas influenced by “queer” theories.

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Gaza: a people under siege

by Lisa Karpova

THE ISRAELI blockade of Gaza Strip, now in its third year, has shown the extremely deep seated hypocrisy in what is put forth as pristine, faultless, superior “western values”.

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Images of the miners’ struggle

NONE OF US will ever forget the miners’ strike of 1984/85 and snapshots that capture the sacrifice and struggle of the mining communities are now available as greeting cards from Past Pixels, a new venture in publishing images of labour movement history.

The set is a personal selection by the photographer Martin Shakeshaft from a collection of 16 postcards that have already been published. These high quality black and white images remind us of the epic scale of the struggle of the mineworkers and their supporters to defend an industry, jobs and communities. The five greeting cards include shots of pickets, marching miners and a cheerful Arthur Scargill cycling down the street in Treorchy in the Rhondda Valley.

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Chavez warns of new US threat

VENEZUELAN President Hugo Chavez repeated a warning today of the danger of the new US military bases in the region and warned that President Barack Obama has no power to stop the imperial machinery.

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South Korean satellite launch fails

by Na Haejung in Seoul

SOUTH Korea’s attempt to launch a satellite into space failed on Tuesday.

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Israeli communist calls for Dimona shut-down

by our Middle East Affairs correspondent

A LEADING Israel communist has called for the closure of the Dimona Nuclear Research Facility following a report in the mass circulation daily Haaretz [The Land] that revealed that workers at the plant took part in experiments that required them to drink uranium.

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Zimbabwe warns against interference

THE LABELLING of Zimbabwe by the United States and its allies as a country in turmoil is a blatant act of interference in the internal affairs of the country, Zimbabwe Defence Forces Commander General Constantine Chiwenga said this week.

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