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The Weekly paper of the New Communist Party of Britain


National News

Fight Back

by New Worker correspondent

TUESDAY saw workers at Britain’s main airport, London Heathrow, who are directly employed by Heathrow Airport Limited (HAL) mount a socially distanced picket as part of a long-running dispute over savage wage cuts imposed on the workforce through a brutal fire and rehire programme. In addition, an advertising van toured the area condemning “Heathrow’s super-rich shareholders are jetting off with workers’ wages”, in which Heathrow’s chief executive officer John Holland Kaye was portrayed as the “Heathrow Grinch CEO is stealing workers’ wages”.

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Zero hours = zero benefits

by New Worker correspondent

AMONGST the workers most affected by the COVID-19 crisis are casual workers on zero-hours contracts. Just one example of this comes from the north London borough of Camden, where staff who have given years of service at the Kentish Town Sports Centre, which is presently closed, have been told they will not be receiving any furlough pay.

The centre is managed by notorious contractor Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL) on behalf of the Labour-run council.

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Yet more redundancies

by New Worker correspondent

AT Gaydon in Warwickshire workers at car manufacturer Aston Martin are facing the treat of massive redundancies as rumours go round that Aston Martin is preparing to transfer body shell production and paint operations to its factory at St Athans, near Cardiff.

In June bosses announced they would be making 500 out of 2,300 workers redundant at Gaydon. Although Unite the union has managed to reduce job losses so far, it says that if work is transferred from the factory, a much higher number of redundancies are likely.

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SNP in Conference

by our Scottish political correspondent

IN ACCORDANCE with this year’s fashion the SNP’s annual conference was an online affair, but the results were no different from those held in conference centres. It is only worth recording that Nicola Sturgeon made yet another demand for a second independence referendum in the sense that it is worth noting that the Pope is a Catholic and that the Conference was banned from discussing any alternative to her hope of getting Boris Johnson’s blessing for a second referendum.

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Poverty Battles

by our Scottish political correspondent

As the last New Worker was going to press the SNP boasted that: “The Scottish Parliament has just unanimously passed the Bill to end period poverty – making Scotland the first country in the world to provide free period products for all who need them.”

Oddly enough the SNP Government was more modest about its own contribution, nor did it mention the fact that the measure had been promoted at Holyrood by Labour’s health spokesperson MSP Monica Lennon with the support of trade unions and feminist groups.

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Starmer facing Shadow Cabinet revolt over Brexit

by Jason Dunn

LABOUR PARTY leader Sir Keir Starmer is reportedly facing threats of mass resignations from his frontbench if he orders MPs to support the Government’s Brexit deal.

Since the party’s historic defeat in the December 2019 general election after voters shifted en masse to the Conservatives, who promised to implement the 2016 Brexit Vote, Labour under Keir Starmer has taken a more cordial approach to the UK’s withdrawal.

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Manchester remembers Engels

by New Worker correspondent

THE EVENTS to mark the 200th anniversary of the birth of Frederick Engels ended with an online event organised by the Chinese Consulate General in Manchester last week. Engels was born in Germany on 28th November 1820 but he spent most of his active life in England, arriving in Manchester in 1842 to work in a mill owned by his family in what was then the centre of the cotton industry in Britain.

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International News

EU wants new post-Trump alliance with US

by Ed Newman

THE European Union wants to forge a new alliance with the USA to bury the tensions of the Trump era and meet the challenges posed by China. According to the Financial Times (FT) a draft plan proposes rebuilding ties, with common fronts on issues ranging from digital regulation to tackling the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Bogus BBC women’s list

by Ai Jun

THE BBC released its list of “100 women of 2020” last week, calling them “inspiring and influential” and claiming they are “leading change and making a difference during these turbulent times”.

The BBC says they have all been assessed and measured for “due impartiality”. Yet, two of the Chinese on the list, Hong Kong riot leader Agnes Chow Ting and controversial writer Fang Fang, distinctly mirror nothing but the BBC’s hostility to China.

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Marx and Engels’ works still valid today

by Huaxia

THE CLASSIC works of German thinkers Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels still serve as references for people to address issues facing today’s world, says Gerald Hubmann, a German scholar.

Hubmann is the chief of the editorial department of Marx-Engels-Gesamtausgabe (MEGA), a project aiming to publish a complete edition of the works, manuscripts and letters of Marx and Engels.

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Bethune: forgotten in Canada but more relevant than ever

by Owen Schalk

HENRY Norman Bethune was an accomplished surgeon, a communist internationalist and a forgotten hero of Canadian history. As a member of the Communist Party of Canada he fought with anti-fascist forces in Spain and later volunteered in the National Revolutionary Army of China during the Second Sino-Japanese War.

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Cuba in Africa: an historic contribution

Prensa Latina

THE VICTORY of Cuba and Angola during Operation Carlota changed the balance of forces in Africa in favour of progressive governments,

Professor Yoslan Silverio, from the Cuban Centre for Research on International Politics, noted that these events granted Cuba great political-diplomatic prestige that still prevails in that continent.

He says that in order to understand better the course of events that led Cuba to provide military support to Angola in 1975, the regional context should be analysed since the 1960s: “We should mention that the process of decolonisation in the African continent started at the time, and the triumphant Cuban Revolution of 1959 was taking its first steps.”

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Features

Maradona the anti-imperialist

IDOC

DIEGO Armando Maradona, one of the greatest athletes of the 20th century and for many people the best football player of all times, died on Wednesday 25th November at the age of 60.

Born in 1960 in Lanús, Buenos Aires, Diego was the fifth child of a poor, working-class family. His father was a factory worker and the early years of young Diego were marked by extreme poverty. Over the decades, alongside his extraordinary career in football, Maradona proved to be a defender of the less privileged, a vocal supporter of Cuba and Latin American left-wing movements, and an outspoken critic of US imperialism.

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China proves pandemic can be controlled

by C J Atkins

IS THERE life after coronavirus? China proved the pandemic can be controlled. Nine months ago, in early February, People’s World (PW) interviewed Lupin, a 26-year-old man from Wuhan, China.

At the time, his hometown was the epicentre of what scientists were still calling the “novel coronavirus”, a pneumonia-like illness which soon sparked a pandemic that engulfed the entire world. Lupin was working overseas in Canada but had returned home to Wuhan to visit family for Chinese New Year. His midnight flight on 23rd January was one of the last to land before the city was sealed in the world’s first COVID-19 lockdown.

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