New Worker Banner

The Weekly paper of the New Communist Party of Britain


National News

On the Rigs

by New Worker correspondent

ON MONDAY the Offshore Co-ordinating Group (OCG), which unites the trade unions involved in the North Sea oil industry, launched a report on A Crisis Behind a Crisis that deals with the major issues facing the oil and gas sector due to both the COVID-19 pandemic and the low price of oil.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

All at sea

by New Worker correspondent

IT IS MIXED fortunes for those at sea at the moment. Seafarers union Nautilus International has secured the jobs of and hammered out a pay deal for its members put on standby after the almost total collapse of services by shipping company UECC (Guernsey) Limited. They will receive 90 per cent of their salaries with no monthly cap.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Nautilus has also agreed to new rotas of 2:1, usually eight

Sputnik

Rob Preece, Campaigns and Communications Manager at the Howard League for Penal Reform, explains why the oldest penal reform charity in the UK has been pushing the government to release more prisoners amidst the pandemic.

What are the most up to date statistics in terms of prisons and prison officers being infected with or having died from COVID-19?

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Rot at the Heart

by our Scottish political affairs correspondent

“THE CULT of personality, the obsessive desire of leaders for complete control of the membership and parliamentarians, the growth of a clique of acolytes, one-person rule – there has been a rot growing at the heart of this organisation for years.”

This was the damning indictment directed against the Scottish National Party (SNP). These are not the views of the Grandmaster of the Loyal Orange Order nor of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Scotland, but of former deputy leader of that very party, Jim Sillars.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Tackling the Virus

by our Scottish political affairs correspondent

According to some fervent nationalists, the handling of the COVID-19 crisis has been so admirable that First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has acquired saintly status. Not everyone agrees.

Labour MP Ian Murray said: “The Scottish Government has also fallen far short in its own response to the coronavirus outbreak, responding in lock-step with the UK Government – a strategy it both criticises and follows at the same time.”

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Shocking Case of Neglect

by our Scottish political affairs correspondent

One group of particularly hard hit and sadly neglected victims of the present crisis have made a heart-rending plea for help. They are that much misunderstood group of Highland landlords. One of their number, Donald Cameron MSP, has signed a Holyrood motion by fellow Tory MSP Murdo Fraser demanding help. The motion has also been signed by Sir Edward Mountain Baronet, the Tory MSP who owns 50 per cent of Delfur Fishings in Moray, which is worth over £8 million.

Cameron, who owns the 70,000 acre Achnacarry Estate worth around £6.5 million, said country sports businesses were facing “unprecedented” challenges. He said: “No-one can doubt the contribution that gamekeepers, ghillies and estate staff make to rural communities across the Highlands and Islands,” so it is obvious he is selflessly concerned with their well-being.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

When Adam delved and Eve did span…

by New Worker correspondent

IN 1381 peasants marched on London to end the hated poll tax. They demanded equal rights and an end to serfdom, and chanted: “When Adam delved and Eve did span [spin], Who then was the gentleman?” Their leaders were Wat Tyler, who may have been a former soldier, Jack Straw and John Ball, a radical priest from Colchester.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

International News

Pompeo an enemy of world peace

Global Times

US SECRETARY of State Mike Pompeo in recent days has launched a string of violent attacks on China. He accused China of causing enormous losses to the USA and the world by “not sharing the information they had”, in an interview with Fox News on 23rd April, saying the Chinese government will “pay a price for what they did”. One day earlier, he blasted China for taking advantage of the pandemic to “bully” neighbours and called on other countries to hold China to account.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Fascist Finn war-crimes denounced

Sputnik

LENINA MAKEEVA, an 84-year-old former prisoner in the fifth Finnish concentration camp in the Karelo-Finnish SSR, said she is ready to testify against the crimes committed by the occupation authorities during the Second World War.

As a child, Makeeva spent two years and eight months in the Petrozavodsk concentration camp. The Red Army released the surviving prisoners of the death camp on 28th June 1944.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Israelis protest at “unity” deal

Radio Havana Cuba

SEVERAL THOUSAND Israelis demonstrated over the weekend against a unity government deal reached between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his rival, parliament speaker Benny Gantz.

The protesters say the unity agreement gives Netanyahu influence over the appointment of judges and legal officials, “crushes democracy” and is meant to rescue him from his legal troubles. Netanyahu is scheduled to face trial next month on charges of fraud, breach of trust and accepting bribes, but continues to deny the charges.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Seeking safety in Russia today

by Larissa Shessler

Head of the Union of Political Emigrants and Political Prisoners from Ukraine

POLITICAL emigration to Russia from Ukraine began in 2014, but still more and more refugees, who can be considered political emigrants, are arriving on Russia’s territory.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Features

Iran launches US fury

by Finian Cunningham

NO WONDER the USA reacted with fury this week when Iran launched a satellite 465 kilometres into space. In baseball terms, the Iranians just hit the American ball out of the park.

Mike Pompeo, the USA’s top diplomat, is demanding more sanctions against Iran over what he claimed was a violation of United Nations (UN) resolutions outlawing Iranian military missiles in space. He called on the “Iranian regime” to prioritise resources in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic and to end its campaign of “global terror”. You have to hand it to Pompeo for his total lack of awareness of the USA’s own absurdity.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

Kissinger on the coronavirus pandemic

by Charles McKelvey

IN AN ARTICLE in the Wall Street Journal on 3rd April, Henry Kissinger, the former US foreign minister during the Nixon era, asserts that “the coronavirus pandemic will forever alter the world order” and that the USA must plan for a new epoch.

In truth, Kissinger does not envision a new epoch but repair of a damaged global political-economic system. He envisions the multilateral co-operation of the imperialist powers in the restoration of the neo-colonial world-system. As always, he does not see that the world-system as it is presently structured is not sustainable because it has over-reached the geographical and ecological limits of the planet, and because the neo-colonised peoples do not accept its unjust terms.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]

What has the US given to the Syrian people? Apart from sanctions and terrorism?

by Rayan Faouri

US OFFICIALS continue to spread lies and misinformation to the American public and the whole world. They attempt to cover up the role of the USA in supporting, financing and arming terrorist organisations in Syria, led by ISIS and Al-Nusra Front, which stand out as the two major terrorist movements throughout the war on Syria. The USA has covered their terrorist acts by false humanitarian pretexts, but all in vain, because the truth of their terrorism was eventually revealed through facts on the ground.

[Read the complete story in the print edition]