The Weekly paper of the New Communist Party of Britain
Week commencing 17th February 2017

National News

New security law threatens journalism

THE NATIONAL Union of Journalists (NUJ) last Monday pledged itself to defend journalism from the Government’s latest attempt to curb press freedom.

The threat comes from proposals to update the Official Secrets Act to criminalise using any information that has been leaked from Government sources — with penalties of up to 14 years in jail.

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Trump visit not wanted in Britain

THE GROWING opposition to Donald Trump making a state visit to Britain has led to the Government postponing their plans for the visit to late next summer, when Parliament will be in recess and he will not face the humiliation of being refused an invitation to address MPs in Westminster Hall, according to a report in the Guardian.

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‘Disgraceful and humiliating treatment’ of sacked EHRC staff

THE CIVIL service union PCS has organised protests outside the offices of the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) in support of workers facing compulsory redundancy.

On Thursday 9th February, whilst PCS and Unite members at the EHRC were on strike over redundancies and budget cuts, management emailed compulsory redundancy notices to 10 of its staff.

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Dunce’s cap for the SNP

by our Scottish political affairs correspondent

THE 10 year reign of the Scottish National Party (SNP) has had an unfortunate impact in any area of Scottish life they have touched. At all levels the education system is in dire straits but for this week the situation in schools will be enough to be going on with. Budget cuts imposed by the SNP have caused serious teacher shortages and resulted in declining standards, which are now becoming obvious.

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sgian dubhs

by our Scottish political affairs correspondent

The sgian dubh is the Gaelic name for the short knife worn in the socks of those men who wear the kilted national dress largely invented in the 19th century by Sir Walter Scott and other romantic nationalists. But the SNP have been wielding a more political dagger in the ongoing purge of SNP council candidates in the run-up to the local elections.

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Happy Valentine’s Day!

by our Scottish political affairs correspondent

Whilst florists and greeting card manufacturers predictably celebrate St Valentine’s Day as another boost to their mid-winter sales, plaudits are going to the Scottish Parliament for granting the Humanist Society Scotland the permanent right to conduct weddings. Although this was recognised by Holyrood some 12 years ago, the Scottish parliament has now formally changed Scottish law to make them the first non-religious group with a permanent right to conduct marraiges. Now that’s what we call a happy Valentine’s Day!

Left campaigning in Essex

by New Worker correspondent

MID ESSEX Left Unity Group brings together supporters from different political parties and trade unions, all with a common cause The aim is to campaign on issues that affect the lives of local people. New Communist Party members, Labour supporters and trade unionists combine their resources and experience to oppose cuts to vital public services.

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Day of the Shining Star

by New Worker correspondent

FRIENDS of the Korean revolution celebrated the 75th anniversary of the birth of dear leader Kim Jong Il at meetings across London last week, including a joint Korean Friendship Association (KFA)/Juche Study Group meeting on Saturday 11th February followed by a reception at the London embassy of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) that same evening, and a Friends of Korea meeting at the John Buckle Centre on Monday 13th February.

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International News

Greek farmers rally in Athens against new tax hikes


THOUSANDS of Greek farmers held a symbolic, peaceful rally in Athens on Tuesday in protest at the new round of tax hikes and increases in social insurance contributions that took effect on 1st January this year.

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Snowden denies Russia “hand-over” claim


EDWARD Snowden has denied US media reports claiming that the Kremlin is going to send him back to America to face treason charges.

Last week news reports surfaced indicating that Moscow would deport whistle-blower Edward Snowden as “a gift” to US President Donald Trump.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Heroes of Donbas that live forever in our hearts!

by James B MacGuffin

THE DONETSK People’s Republic (DPR) had recently suffered terrible blows. On 16th October 2016, the beloved, brave Commander of the Sparta battalion, Arseny Pavlov, known as “Motorola”, was murdered.

The assassins set off a bomb in the elevator to his apartment, which was supposedly well protected and secured. His young wife Elena, a former volunteer fighter, was waiting for him. She was warming up his dinner as he made his last call to her on his way up.

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On Western Terrorism

An interview with André Vltchek

André Vltchek is an American investigative journalist, documentary film-maker and novelist. He has covered countless armed conflicts around the world. His most recent works include On Western Terrorism, a discussion with Noam Chomsky, a renowned expert on propaganda. Together they explore the legacy of colonialism that lasts to this day and denounce the hypocrisy of the West in regard to terrorism because it is largely responsible for its development.

All along your passionate discussion with Noam Chomsky, you expose facts about imperialist interventionism in recent history, in Asia, Latin America and the Middle East. What was the purpose of switching the focus from the alleged enemies of the West and onto the West itself?

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Science and nonsense

by Rob Gowland

MARXISM-LENINISM is not only a political theory (albeit a very significant one), it is also a science. Its alternative name in fact is scientific socialism. Communists are committed to science and the scientific method, which is why we take such a dim view of creationists and other anti-science crackpots.

Religion dominated — and seriously inhibited — intellectual life in Europe for hundreds of years, until the pressure for material development combined with the sudden influx of riches from the newly discovered lands of the East and the Americas brought about a realignment of class forces. The previously all-powerful feudal landowners and their ecclesiastical allies found themselves having to make room for merchants and traders, people who measured their wealth not in land but in capital itself.

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New developments in political economy: the politics of oil

by Zoltan Zigedy

SINCE the military build-up leading to the First World War, petroleum production has been the figurative, if not literal, motor for economic growth. Modern machines of war demonstrated the future.

The imperialist powers recognised the crucial role of motorised vehicles, airplanes and naval vessels, and their thirst for oil in modern warfare, as well as anticipating the many important peacetime uses to come. At the same time, these same powers foresaw that securing sources of crude oil would be an essential, if not the essential, key to achieving and maintaining a dominant position in the global economy.

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