The Weekly paper of the New Communist Party of Britain
Week commencing 22nd December 2017

National News

Liverpool defies government to help all its homeless

LIVERPOOL Mayor Joe Anderson last week officially launched the city’s new rough sleeping shelter — and announced that he and the City Council will ignore Government policy so everyone can have somewhere safe to stay.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Black children face growing bias in the justice system

NEXT April will mark 25 years since the racist murder of Stephen Lawrence and 19 years since the 1999 McPherson Inquiry into the police handling of this case. That inquiry concluded that the police and judiciary in this country were institutionally racist in that black and ethnic minority people were treated less favourably by the police and judiciary.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Over £40 million in bonuses paid to DWP staff

THE Civil service has paid workers in the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) more than £40 million in performance-related bonuses despite serious problems in the way the new Universal Credit (UC) has been rolled out and the increase in the number of successful appeals against disability benefit cuts.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Local DWP offices forced to drop Universal Credit

THE ROLL-OUT of Universal Credit (UC) has become so chaotic that, without telling the public or press, the Department for Work and Pensions has abandoned the extension of the system “until further notice” in some of the areas where it has already been launched.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Twitter bans Britain First and EDL

THE SOCIAL media service Twitter has banned posts from the neo-Nazi, Islamophobic, Britain First (BF) and the similar English Defence League (EDL). And Facebook is also considering a ban on these sites that spread lies and hatred about Muslims.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

No more buses? Take a taxi says Grayling

CHRIS GRAYLING, the Secretary of State for Transport, last week responded to news that local bus services are being cut throughout Britain by ‘Uber-style’ rides, provoking an angry response from Labour, the trade unions and passenger campaign groups.

Grayling told local government leaders that the future of local buses was a more bespoke service, suggesting that on-demand models similar to the ride-hailing mobile phone app could be used more widely to bridge funding gaps.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

FBU call for ‘compromised’ Grenfell expert to stand down

THE FIRE Brigades Union (FBU) last week called for one of the key experts appointed by the Grenfell Tower inquiry to stand down because of his alleged support in the past for cuts to emergency services and deregulation.

Martin Seaward, a barrister representing the FBU, told the inquiry that Steven McGuirk, a former chief fire officer in Greater Manchester, would be “conflicted” and “compromised” in giving evidence.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

The Penny Budget

by our Scottish political affairs correspondent

FOR DECADES the Scottish National Party (SNP) demanded a Scottish Parliament because Westminster was, at best, neglectful of Scottish interests. Now that they are in charge of it (albeit as a minority government) they do not like the institution doing very much. In the course of this year it has only passed seven Acts. In comparison, 1997, the year in which Tony Blair’s first administration called the referendums that brought into being the Scottish and Welsh assemblies, the neglectful Westminster passed 11 purely Scottish Acts.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Anti-Tory song in race for No 1!

CAPTAIN SKA, the band behind this summer’s viral smash hit Liar Liar GE2017, a scathing attack on Theresa May and her government released just before the 2017 General Election, are joining the race for the Christmas charts with a new track called Sons and Daughters, that was officially released this week.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Feminist twist to Christmas carols


GREY London, an advertising company based in London, has added an amusing spin to traditional Christmas carols with feminist themes to raise money for Refuge, a domestic violence charity organisation. The album Hyrrs: Festive Hymns Made Feminist contains seven Christmas carols, including Kick the balls and Oh, sexism.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

China and South Asia Gallery reopens

by Mu Xuequan

THE BRITISH Museum’s China and South Asia Gallery fully reopened to the public last week after renovation and refurbishment.

The gallery explores the cultures of China and South Asia through a range of magnificent objects.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

International News

Iran: France is Trump’s lapdog


IRAN denounced French President Emmanuel Macron on Sunday over the latter’s stance towards Tehran, insisting that Paris will lose international credibility if it “blindly follows” the wildly veering foreign policy declarations of US President Donald Trump.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Gaddafi’s son to run for president of Libya


THE SON of former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, will participate in the presidential election in Libya according to Egypt Today, an Egyptian monthly magazine.

The magazine quoted Basem al-Hashimi al-Suhl, who represents the Gaddafi family, saying that: “Saif al-Islam will run for the upcoming presidential election, which may take place in mid-2018.”

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Angola success in rebuilding

by Darcy Borrero Batista

FORTY years ago, it would have been hard to imagine that after five centuries of Portuguese colonialism, and 14 years of armed struggle, an African country could so successfully change the course of its history and rebuild itself. But Angola, celebrating 42 years of independence, has done so.

With the leadership of Agostinho Neto, and later José Eduardo dos Santos, the country created a broad-based program of integration and re-insertion for the underserved population.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]


A dystopian future?

by Rob Gowland

WHEN I WAS a child in the late 1940s, one of the comic books in my collection was set after nuclear war had devastated Earth (a hot topic in the ’40s and ’50s when America’s leaders were belligerently threatening to ‘nuke’ any country that defied their diktat). I remember the main health consequence of the ‘atomic war’ in the comic was blindness caused by ‘the flash’.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Donbas Commander Nemo: ‘I continue to fight’

by Fabrizio Rostelli

HE FOUGHT for two years, arms in hand, alongside the people of Donbas in the name of socialism. This is his first interview since he returned to Italy in July 2017. His nom de guerre is Nemo and he was commander of InterUnit, the internationalist unit founded in September 2015, and fought for the Donbas People’s Republics (Lugansk and Donetsk), which unilaterally declared independence from Ukraine on 12th May, 2014, following a popular referendum. InterUnit, operating on the front line in the northwest of the Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR), suspended military activities in January 2017. The conflict, however, does not cease; the civil war has continued for nearly four years and according to official estimates has already caused more than 10,000 deaths. Nemo prefers to keep his anonymity. I met him in Rome, his home town, on the sidelines of a public meeting on the centenary of the Bolshevik Revolution. Amongst those present, the ambassadors and delegates of Venezuela, Cuba and Nicaragua followed his contribution with interest.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]