National News

Construction bosses own up to blacklisting

EIGHT major employers admitted liability for defaming construction workers in High Court hearing in London on Wednesday 7th October dealing with claims for compensation for 122 GMB members blacklisted by Carillion and other construction employers.

Unions Unite, GMB and Ucatt said the construction firms have apologised as part of a continuing legal claim in the high court. Payments will vary but could be worth up to £250,000 in some cases.

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Protesters blame Erdogan for bomb horror

by New Worker correspondent

MORE THAN 10,000 people took to the streets of London last Sunday, mainly from London’s Turkish and Kurdish communities, to express shock and outrage at the bombing of an anti-government peace demonstration in the Turkish capital, Ankara, on Saturday.

The bombing in Ankara killed 128 people and injured more than 200 — some very seriously. No organisation has claimed responsibility for the two blasts but the progressive Turkish and Kurdish communities are certain that the government of the AKP (Justice and Development Party), led by Recep Tayyip Erdogan, is directly or indirectly responsible.

They accuse Erdogan of playing a two-faced game allowing Al Qaeda, ISIS and other anti-Assad forces to cross the Turkish border into Syria while at the same time, like the United States government, pretending to oppose ISIS.

Erdogan has used the conflict as an excuse to launch a new military offensive against the Kurdish community in Turkey and those just across the border in northern Syria, where the Kurds have been battling for their lives against ISIS.

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Councils turn down two-thirds of requests for care

AROUND two-thirds of elderly and disabled people in England who seek care help from their local councils are turned away according to a report published last week. Councils reject two-thirds of requests for care according to the Health and Social Care Information Centre.

Nearly 1.85 million requests for support were made last year but only just over 650,000 people received help.

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Barnet council workers strike

MEMBERS of the public service union Unison employed by Barnet council staged a 24-hour strike last Wednesday in protest at austerity cuts and the outsourcing of their jobs.

The union organised picket lines across the borough with strikers protesting at East Finchley Library in East Finchley High Road, and the council refuse depot at Bittacy Hill in Mill Hill East.

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Doctors force Hunt to backtrack

JEREMY HUNT, the Health Secretary has been forced to drop plans to change the pay and conditions of junior doctors to avoid strike action by 53,000 junior medics.

He has been forced into a partial climb-down in his dispute with NHS junior doctors in an attempt to appease their anger at a threatened punitive new contract that would cut pay and extend working hours — and to forestall a ballot for strike action.

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IDS targets poor pensioners

THE WORK and Pensions Secretary Ian Duncan Smith (IDS) is planning a battery of attacks on pensioner benefits — making a lie of David Cameron’s re-election pledge to rule out cuts to pensioner benefits.

IDS wants to slash winter fuel allowances for pensioners and scrap free bus passes and TV licences in a move that would spell misery for millions of people.

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Tommy Robinson rediscovers Islamophobia

TOMMY Robinson, a convicted fraudster also known as Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, founded the Islamophobic English Defence League, a mob of assorted neo-Nazis, former squaddies, football hooligans and lost souls in search of something to fight about.

But two years ago he dramatically quit the rag-tag army he had created with a big press conference telling the media he had been mistaken and that some Muslims were quite nice people and that working towards ethnic harmony in a peaceful way was a good thing.




But last week he was back on the soap box again spreading Islamophobia in Utrecht in the Netherlands addressing a rally of the anti-Islam movement Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamisation of the Occident (Pegida) and declared that he was “proud” to have set up the EDL.

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Scottish Political News

by our Scottish political affairs correspondent

THE SCOTTISH National Party is having its annual conference at Aberdeen this weekend. No doubt delegates will spend their time discussing all the great triumphs of the SNP’s eight years as the governing party of Scotland.

In the field of education the SNP’s report card is not very inspiring. It’s much-vaunted policy of abolishing university tuition fees makes it more difficult to attend university as only the better off attend as a result of the lack of grants for those going to university.

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Celebrating the victories of the Korean communists

by New Worker correspondent

THE people of Democratic Korea celebrated the 70th anniversary of the Workers Party of Korea in style with a massive military parade through Kim Il Sung Square in Pyongyang on 10th October. And throughout the world communists joined them at events to mark the foundation of the party that has led the Korean revolution to victory after victory in the decades that followed.

London was no exception, with a number of meetings and events that concluded with a reception at the DPR Korea em- bassy last week. Tributes to sacrifice and steadfastness of the Korean communists who transformed the liberated north of the Korean peninsula into a workers’ paradise were made by Daphne Liddle from the New Communist Party and Michael Chant from the Revolutionary Communist Party of Britain (ML) along with others from the Korean Friendship Association, Socialist Labour Party and the CPGB (ML).

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International News

Pressure on Israel may bring change

by Ivan Martínez

THE RENEWED surge of violence between Israelis and Palestinians is reaching boiling point. On 7th October a video was captured during clashes between Ramallah and the Beit El settlement. It shows Israeli undercover officers shooting an unarmed Palestinian youth in the leg at point-blank range, while other undercover officers hold him down. Incredibly now Jerusalem’s mayor is urging Israelis to carry firearms at all times.

Anybody can see the Israeli government is actually stoking the flames by making no effort to address the causes, but is simply using punitive measures.

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Che Guevara: one of Latin America’s great figures

by Ivan Martínez

FRANCO - BRAZILIAN author Michael Löwy, wrote in his book [The Marxism of Ché Guevara: “Ché was not only a heroic fighter but a revolutionary thinker with a political and moral project and a system of ideas and values for which he fought and gave his life. The philosophy that gave his political and ideological choices their coherence, colour, and taste was a deep revolutionary humanism.

For Ché the true Communist, the true revolutionary was one who felt that the great problems of all humanity were his or her personal problems, one who was capable of “feeling anguish whenever someone was assassinated, no matter where it was in the world, and of feeling exultation whenever a new banner of liberty was raised somewhere else. Ché’s way of life was the living and concrete expression of this revolutionary Marxist humanism.”

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Syrian Chessboard: How Putin will win out over US grandmasters


THE OBAMA administration’s “Topple Assad” plan is doomed, US journalist Mike Whitney said, adding that by tweaking its war on terror narrative and inventing “bad” and “good” terrorists: “Washington has backed itself into an ideological cul-desac from which there is no way out.”

There will be no US-Turkey no-fly zone over Syria as US Senator John McCain and Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton are calling for, as well as no aerial or ground invasion from the Turkish side into Syria: Russia has re-written the rules of the game in the region and Washington and its Nato allies should reconcile themselves to this new reality, Mike Whitney said.

“Yes, Hillary and McCain have been calling for a no-fly zone over Syria, but that’s not going to happen. Putin won’t allow it and neither will the Security Council. And, on what pretext anyway? Is Obama really going to request a no-fly zone on the basis that Putin is killing “moderate” terrorists along with the “extreme” terrorists? That’s not a very compelling argument, in fact, even the American people are having a hard time swallowing that one,” Whitney wrote in his latest article for CounterPunch

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Thomas Sankara Africa’s Ché Guevara

PRESIDENT Thomas Sankara of the North African country that was then known as Upper Volta was born in Yako, the son of Marguerite Sankara and Sambo Joseph Sankara on 21st December 1949 in Yako, French West Africa (Now Burkina Faso). He was assassinated on 15th October 1987 aged 37.

But in his short life he led a transformation in his country, which he renamed Burkina Faso into a developing socialist state and earned himself a reputation as “Africa’s Ché Guevara”, which lives on and gives inspiration into the continuing struggles there against neo-colonialism and western economic imperialism.

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Black history month The African who shook Rome

by Daphne Liddle THE CARTHAGINIAN military leader Hannibal, who led a huge army, including infantry cavalry and elephants through Spain, across the Pyrenees, the Alps and into Italy where they fought and defeated the might of Rome in three major battles and waged a long campaign against Rome, was an African.

The city of Carthage was founded on the north African Mediterranean coast near what is now Tunis, by Phoenician traders from the Levant somewhere around 1,200 BC. The City had its ups and downs with its heyday as a great trading port around 814BC.

By the time Hannibal was born in 247 BC the original Phoenicians had long since mingled with the local Berbers, Moors and other African ethnic groups so that Hannibal would almost certainly have had a mixed ancestry. Statues of him and a coin bearing his face show a man with dark tightly curled hair and of African appearance.

In his 1961 work, French Historian Gabriel Audisio, in his work Hannibal in 1961, comments that he considered “Hannibal to be neither a Phoenician, nor a Carthaginian, nor a Punic, but a North African... The majority of the Punic populace seems to have had African, indeed Negroid, ancestry.”

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