The Weekly paper of the New Communist Party of Britain
Week commencing 16th December 2016

National News

Disability charities “selling out”

SEVEN major disability charities in Britain are in danger of betraying their users’ best interests by seeking out lucrative contracts with the Departments of Work and Pensions (DWP) to play a role in Government back-to-work services under the new Work and Health Programme, according to a report issued last week by Disability News Service (DNS).

DNS contacted the seven major disability charities — Mind, Leonard Cheshire Disability, the Royal National Institute for the Blind (RNIB), Action on Hearing Loss (AHL), Scope, Disability Rights UK and Mencap — most of which are not controlled by their users.

It found that none of them are ruling out seeking contracts from the DWP.

Activists from the campaigning group Disabled People Against Cuts (DPAC) say this means that the charities will be unable to campaign effectively on welfare reform because of the size of contracts on offer.

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Neo-Nazi group banned

THE GOVERNMENT is to ban a tiny British neo-Nazi group and list it as a terror organisation. This will be the first time since the Second World War that an extreme right-wing organisation has been banned.

Support or membership of National Action (NA), an anti-Semitic white supremacist group, will become a criminal offence under the Terrorism Act 2000, subject to endorsement by Parliament.

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Argos drivers to strike

THE GIANT union Unite predicted havoc for customers of the retail chain Argos as the company’s drivers voted overwhelmingly to take strike action for 72 hours in a dispute over unpaid holiday back pay — in some cases outstanding for more than two years.

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PO bosses provoke Christmas strike

THE COMMUNICATION Workers’ Union (CWU) last week accused Post Office management of provoking the five-day strike it has just announced in the week running up to Christmas.

Starting on Monday 19th December and including Saturday Christmas Eve, thousands of Post Office workers will be walking out on strike from workplaces across the country, in response to continuing attacks by company chiefs on their job security and pensions, and in defence of the Crown Office network.

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Lawyers declare boycott of Israel lawful

CAMPAIGNERS for Palestinian rights who call for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel are lawfully “exercising their right of freedom of expression” according to an open letter signed by 200 lawyers and academics.

This comes as western imperialist powers are trying to equate opposition to Israel’s genocidal oppression of Palestine with anti-Semitism and to outlaw pro-Palestinian campaigns.

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In six years men killed 900 women

MORE THAN 900 women were killed by men in England and Wales over a six-year period, most by their current or former partners, according to the first detailed analysis of deadly male violence against women in those countries.

The Femicide Census, which tracks and analyses the deaths of women killed by partners, ex-partners, male relatives, acquaintances, colleagues and strangers, was developed by nia, a charity dedicated to ending violence against women, and Women’s Aid.

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Bus and Working Poverty

by our Scottish political correspondent

WE HAVE all heard of fuel or food poverty, when people spend more than a particular percentage of their income on essentials. A new type has been discovered in Scotland, this is bus poverty.

Not only have one-fifth of Scotland’s bus routes vanished in the past decade, but passengers often have to pay through the nose for the remaining routes.

This is particularly grim for the third of households which do not have access to a car. Some have to spend up to 17 per cent of their outgoings after rent or mortgage on bus fares. For low-paid workers the train is out of the question because train fares are far more expensive, almost double the equivalent bus routes.

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Construction News

by our Scottish political correspondent

Another group of workers at the sharp end are those working on the new Queensferry crossing — a duplication and eventual replacement for the Forth Road Bridge. Left Labour MSP Neil Findlay has called for an investigation into claims that workers on the £1.4 billion bridge presently being built with Chinese steel have been paid below industry rates and are working amidst health and safety breaches. Many tradesmen have left the site in protest.

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SNP’s Social Care Cuts

by our Scottish political correspondent

Labour councils in Scotland are on a collision course with the SNP government over their refusal to accept cuts in social care.

Labour members are using their power on the new Integrated Joint Boards (IJBs) of Scotland’s Health and Social Care Partnerships to vote down budget proposals, much to the annoyance of SNP Health Minister and Sturgeon crony Shona Robison. The IJBs were set up to co-ordinate NHS-provided medical and local authority-provided social care.

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The eternal memory of Kim Jong Il

by New Worker correspondent

FRIENDS and comrades returned to the Marchmont Centre in London last Saturday to commemorate the 5th anniversary of the passing away of dear leader Kim Jong Il who devoted his life to serving the Korean people. Organised by the Korean Friendship Association (KFA), speakers included Dermot Hudson of the KFA, Shaun Pickford and Alex Meads. Kim Song Gi, Minister Counsellor from the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) embassy, also spoke and New Communist Party national chair Alex Kempshall delivered a solidarity message during the meeting.

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Liverpool Mayor welcomes terracotta warriors

by Hou Qiang

THE MAYOR of Liverpool welcomed last week’s announcement that China’s famous terracotta warriors are to go on show in the city. The warriors will be the star attraction at an exhibition to be staged at Liverpool’s World Museum in 2018.

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International News

People celebrate liberation of Aleppo

by our Arab Affairs correspondent

SYRIAN troops have now cleared the last terrorist positions in Aleppo. reuniting the city after over four years of bitter fighting. Syrian troops and the people’s militias overran most of the rebel-held enclave last weekend. Most of the gunmen fled or surrendered under the Syrian Government’s amnesty scheme. The remaining terrorists left Aleppo under a Russian-brokered truce that allowed some 5,000 gunmen and civilians to leave under Red Cross protection to rebel-held territory west of the city in the Idlib area.

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CIA Agents who were Castro’s Intelligence Officers


CUBAN paediatrician Eduardo Sagaro was recruited into the CIA in the late 1970s to conduct surveillance on Havana’s domestic and foreign operations. Unbeknownst to the agency, Sagaro was one of a number of Cubans working as a double agent, feeding information from Washington to intelligence agencies in Havana.

Radio Sputnik’s Loud & Clear spoke with Sagaro about his experience, as he gives insight into US plans to dismantle the Cuban revolution.

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Pentagon to deploy more troops to Afghanistan

by Pavel Jacomino

THE UNITED States military says it will send an armoured brigade and an aviation unit totalling about 2,300 soldiers to Afghanistan this winter. The Pentagon made the announcement, saying that 1,500 soldiers will be sent to Afghanistan, in addition to another 800 troops that will be deployed in support of a training mission known as Operation Freedom’s Sentinel.

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Hypocrisy is America’s hallmarking

by David Harrison

PRESIDENT Obama’s recent decision to investigate the results of their latest national election proclaiming “interference” by outside countries smacks of irony, hypocrisy and a double-standard.

The fact that Donald Trump has emerged as the President-elect, much to the consternation of the Democrats and a large portion of the American public, has President Obama and high-level Democrats wondering what went wrong and what effect cyber wars may have played in the downfall of their “star” candidate, Hillary Clinton.

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Britain’s new intelligence chief is living in an upside down world

by John Wight

JUST WHEN we thought it could not get any worse for a British establishment that has been floundering around in a perfidious swamp of dishonour when it comes to its foreign policy in recent times, up pops the new head of MI6 in the shape of Alex Younger with an opening speech in his new role to prove us wrong.

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Socialist Realism and Cold War Warriors

by Rob Gowland

THE ARTS scene in post-revolutionary Russia was one of hectic activity and ferment. Initially there were those — mainly youngsters — who thought that anything that shocked their elders must be revolutionary, so obscenity must be super revolutionary! We’ve all met “revolutionaries” of that stamp.

That trend fell away in the course of the Civil War and the Intervention. During the New Economic Policy, when limited private enterprise was encouraged whilst the economy tried to recover from the ravages of war, some revolutionary artists enthusiastically embraced the theory known as Futurism. The Futurists believed that the Revolution required a complete rupture from the past and, therefore, so did Soviet art.

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How ‘human rights’ sell war

by Daniel Bey

Telesur spoke to author Jean Bricmont on how the industry and ideology of human rights has been used to justify imperialism and undermine the European and North American left. Your book, Humanitarian Imperialism: Using Human Rights to Sell War was released in English back in 2006 following the invasion of Iraq by the US and the British. So, for those not familiar with the book, could you outline briefly the contents and the argument, and tell us what exactly inspired you to write it?

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