The Weekly paper of the New Communist Party of Britain
Week commencing 27th October 2017

National News

Anti-racists defy new tide of racism

AROUND 1,300 anti-racists packed Friends Meeting House in Euston, London, last Saturday to debate the rising rise of racism and Islamophobia in Britain and the world, at a conference called by Stand Up To Racism (SUTR).

Amongst those attending were leading anti-fascists from Germany, Austria and Greece and author David Neiwert analysing the new far-right mobilisations in the US emboldened by US President Donald Trump’s Islamophobia and racism, Kevin Courtney, Roger McKenzie, Harun Rashid Khan, Shahrar Ali, Salma Yaqoob, Weyman Bennett, the joint general secretary of Unite Against Fascism.

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Prosecuted for fighting fascism in Ukraine

CAMPAIGNERS are calling for the release of Ben Stimson, a Manchester anti-fascist who is in prison, convicted under the British Terrorism Act for “facilitating” acts of “terrorism” by serving with one of the Donbas militias for four months in 2015 as an ambulance driver.

He was first arrested in November 2015 immediately on his return to Britain and after having made the mistake of giving an interview to a BBC journalist about his role in the Donbas.

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Domestic violence victims ‘sleeping rough’

THE CHARITY Women’s Aid last week reported as big increase in the number of domestic violence victims being forced to sleep rough because of cuts in the number of women’s refuges — and this includes pregnant women.

Theresa May claimed that the issue of domestic violence was of “personal importance” to her, but her cuts in services and funding for local authorities mean that around a fifth of specialist refuges for the victims of domestic violence have closed since 2010, and those that remain are packed to overflowing.

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Grenfell firefighter refuses tea with May

DAVID BADILLO, a firefighter based in North Kensington who was one of the first on the scene at the Grenfell Tower fire in June, rejected an invitation from Downing Street to meet Theresa May where, along with other firefighters who were at the blaze, he would be praised for his heroic efforts.

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RMT new DOO strikes as ASLEF caves in to bribery

THE RAIL union RMT on Monday announced separate strikes in November against different train operating companies in the long-running battle to defend the role of properly qualified guards on all trains.

Members on Southern, Greater Anglia, South Western Railways and Island Line have been instructed not to book on for any shifts between 00:01 hours on Wednesday 8th November and 23:59 hours on Thursday 9th November.

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Low Pay Scandal

ANOTHER important Scottish public service is suffering a severe recruitment crisis because of offering inadequate salaries that are much less than those prevailing in the private sector.

The Scottish courts system is finding it difficult to recruit senior judges from the ranks of Queen’s Councils (QCs). According to a survey by the Lord President only six per cent of the QCs said that they intended to apply for a senior judicial post. Starting salaries for senators (as senior judges are known) are as little as £181,566. With the price of claret being what it is, and full bottomed horsehair wigs costing £2,412.50 from Stanley Ley of Fleet Street, one can see just how pitiful these public sector salaries are. Five criminal QCs earned more that £250,000 in legal aid fees last year and those specialising in commercial law think those sorts of fees are peanuts. It is clear that few QCs are willing to take a pay cut to take on what was once seen as promotion.

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Fidel the musical!

by New Worker correspondent

COMING soon to the West End is musical like no other. It promises to completely change your ideas about Fidel Castro, Cuba and politics!

The writer, Dr Denise Baden, has not just drawn on the Cuban story but also the process of musical development has been designed to reflect Cuban values of inclusion, education and solidarity.

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Peking Opera returns to London

by Zhou Xin

The China National Peking Opera Company (CNPOC) returned to Britain for the fourth time, with the début of the classic opera A River All Red on Saturday night attracting over 1,000 Chinese nationals and Londoners alike, and the classic play The Phoenix Returns Home, at London’s Sadler’s Wells this week.

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International News

Trade unionists call for end of sanctions on Syria

by M al-Frieh and H Said

PARTICIPANTs at a trade union symposium in Brussels last week strongly condemned the unilateral coercive economic measures imposed by the USA and the European Union (EU) against Syria, its people and its workers.

Organised under the slogan of supporting the Syrian people against imperialism, wars and the intervention of the EU and NATO, the symposium was organised by PAME (the Greek All Workers Militant Front) at the European Parliament’s HQ on 19th and 20th October. It was attended by the heads of many EU trade unions.

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Russia vetoes new Syria chemical weapons probe


RUSSIA has vetoed a United Nations (UN) Security Council resolution aimed at renewing a UN investigative mission into the use of chemical weapons in Syria, put forth by the USA.

Eleven members of the body voted in favour of the document, Bolivia and Russia voted against it, and China and Kazakhstan abstained.

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Greek ‘Leftist’ leader hails Trump in Washingt


GREEK Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras is facing withering criticism following his visit to Washington, where he is accused of prostrating Greek national interests before President Donald Trump — whom he had only last year accused of representing “evil” — whilst selling the country out to the USA.

The meeting was seen by many in the Greek left as an “unprecedented manifestation of subordination to the US imperialists,” who backed violent Greek monarchists and military juntas throughout the Cold War.

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Democratic Korea

As Trump threatens, the nation still struggles with America’s lethal legacy

by Felicity Arbuthnot

“EXPERTS say it will take a hundred years to clean up all of the unexploded ordnance,” says Major Jong Il Hyon, “but I think it will take much longer.”

Major Jong has lost five colleagues in the still ongoing ordnance disposal work and “carries a lighter one gave him before he died. He also bears a scar on his left cheek from a bomb disposal mission gone wrong.”

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British orchestra to play in Hanoi


THE ROYAL Philharmonic Concert Orchestra (RPCO) will play at the Hànoi Opera House on 4th November, treating local music lovers to a night of romance and drama.

The one-night show, under the baton of conductor Anthony Weeden, will feature South African violinist David Juritz and Vietnamese pianist Lưu Hồng Quang. The repertoire will include 10 pieces by popular composers of the late 18th and early 19th century such as Mozart, Beethoven, Mendelssohn and Haydn.

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Graft, corruption and business opportunities

by Rob Gowland

FOR MANY bourgeois politicians, government is merely an extension of business, an opportunity to use public funds to make private profits. Australian political leaders such as Tony Abbott and Malcolm Turnbull certainly fall into this group, but the politician who most embodies the phenomenon is US President Donald Trump.

A real estate developer, Trump ran for President partly because it would add colossal value to his various resorts. He was also not unmindful of the other benefits that would accrue to his pocket from being President. He has blatantly pushed members of his family forwards, brushing aside criticism that he is using the Presidency to feather his own nest. After all, that’s what people in business do all the time and government is just another branch of business, isn’t it?

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From Marx to Lenin

by Deirdre Griswold

LIFE IS FULL of contradictions. It is the development of the means of production that makes socialism possible; but the consciousness needed to actually fight for socialism has so far been greatest in those countries where the means of production have been stunted and even obliterated by the imperialists.

Enthusiasm for revolutionary change that can bring down capitalism and replace it with socialism is energising a new generation in the United States. It’s no secret why this should be happening.

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