The New Worker

The Weekly paper of the New Communist Party of Britain

Week commencing 3rd November 2006

Cowardly MPs let Blair off the hook again

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by our Arab Affairs Correspondent

partisans are pounding the imperialists following the Ramadan offensive in October that was the fourth-deadliest month of the war for the US-led army of occupation. One hundred-and-eight imperialist troops were killed and many more wounded including 103 Americans, the highest US death-toll since January 2005.

Forty US servicemen were killed in and around Baghdad, double the number there just two months ago and the rest fell in resistance ambushes, bombings and attacks that are sweeping the country.

Though the guerrillas concentrate their fire on the Americans, the puppet army and police do not escape unscathed. The partisans have returned in force to Fallujah which was stormed by US Marines two years ago with snipers playing cat and mouse with American patrols and their local quislings.

 “In fact there are many more snipers now,” puppet policeman Sebri Ahmed told the media. “Our men are terrified, and the majority of them have quit after serious threats of getting killed, like our three main leaders.”

General Hudairi Abbas, former deputy police chief of Fallujah was killed two months ago. Colonel Ahmed Diri was killed soon after, and last week the police leader of al-Anbar, General Shaaban al-Janabi, was assassinated outside his house in Fallujah. There are now no police patrols on the streets of Fallujah and the only policemen around remain inside their main station.


In Samara hundreds more are resigning and turning their weapons in to the resistance following partisan threats that if they did not do so within three days they would die.

In so far as the Americans have any strategy left, apart from protecting their own bases, it is to divide Iraq into three weak, sectarian statelets but that plan is already falling apart.

 Though the puppet government is dominated by reactionary Shia religious leaders who control the sectarian Badr Brigades it also relies on the Mahdi Army which is led by maverick Shia cleric Muqtada al Sadr. And last week US forces were ordered by the puppet regime to lift their blockade on Sadr City, the Baghdad slum neigh-bourhood that is a Mahdi Army stronghold.


Puppet “premier” Nouri al Malaki is believed to have given the order to strengthen his standing with al Sadr, who is a supporter of Iran, which sees itself as the protector of the Shia community throughout the Middle East. The checkpoints were imposed as part of the American hunt to find a missing soldier that they believe has been abducted by Mahdi Army militiamen.

Meanwhile dozens of Iraqi intellectuals have issued an appeal denouncing plans to partition the country. Iraqi journalists and writers have issued a declaration entitled Not in our name calling on Iraqis in every part of the country and from every religious and ethnic background to join together to block the effort aimed at “federalising” their country.

 The appeal says that “the federation plan that has been proposed is nothing but a plot, precisely woven without our people’s knowledge in order to destroy them by dividing them into little feuding states that will exhaust their strength and bring down the Iraqi state that has the potential to turn into a great and mighty power that could threaten the interests and ambitions of the colonialist West and its creature the Hebrew state in Palestine.”

Two tribal movements, the Republican Rally and the Central Council for Iraqi and Arab tribes have made a similar call for a national mobilisation for national unity to stop the US sponsored partition plan.

Back in Baghdad the second trial of ousted president Saddam Hussein and some senior members of his government rumbles on. Saddam Hussein’s chief advocate has again walked out in protest at the procedures of this kangaroo court and the trial itself has been adjourned until 7th November – by which time the verdict on the first trial, where Saddam was charges with ordering a massacre following an attempt on his life, may be announced.

The underground Arab Socialist Renaissance (Baath) Party has warned that the Americans will pay a “very dear price” if their leader is executed and that those who gave false witness at his trial will also be punished.

The Baath called for the immediate and unconditional release of Saddam Hussein and his comrades, warning that if he is harmed in any way the door will be closed to any negotiations with the resistance.


Pull the troops out now!

THOUGH the attempt to force the Government to hold an inquiry into the Iraq war was defeated in the House of Commons Tuesday night that’s by no means the end of the matter. Tony Blair and his cohorts were clearly on the defensive during the debate, which was essentially about Britain’s continued presence in Iraq even though the proposal was merely to call for an immediate probe into the Government’s conduct in relation to the war.

Labour Parliamentary Whips treated it as a vote of no confidence to demand total loyalty from their backbenchers. As it happened, the motion tabled by the Scottish Nationalists and Plaid Cymru, and supported by the Liberal Democrats and the Tories, was defeated by 25 votes.

Margaret Becket, our ineffectual Foreign Minister, bleated that this was “not the time” for an inquiry which could undermine the morale of the troops in Iraq,  ignoring the recent comments of General Dannatt, the Chief of the General Staff, or the opinion polls that show that the vast majority of the people of Britain want out of Iraq now.

Twelve Labour MPs – 13 if you count Claire Short who has resigned from the Parliamentary Labour Party over the war and  now sits as an Independent on the opposition benches – took the principled stand and voted with the opposition. The rest shamefully voted to give Blair another lifeline that he will use to drag out his final days in Downing Street. Realistic elements within the ruling circles on both sides of the Atlantic are moving towards an exit strategy in Iraq – partly because the occupation army  has been broken by the resistance but also because millions of working people on both sides of the Atlantic have filled the ranks of the anti-war movement demanding an end to the war.

Blair and his craven  cronies must be driven out of the labour movement if the Labour Party is to survive. Millions on the street demanding the immediate and unconditional withdrawal of all British troops from Iraq can only speed the day.


A Stern Report indeed

Sir Nicholas Stern’s report to the Government makes grim reading. The conclusion that the world has to act now on climate change or face devastating economic consequence, has long been made by the ecologist lobby. British governments have long chosen to blind-eye the warnings. But it cannot ignore one  that comes from the former chief economist of the World Bank.

The problem is that the initial response from the Government is to talk about greater reliance nuclear energy regardless of the hidden costs and danger involved, together with a swathe of “green taxes” including high duties on petrol and air travel which will penalise working people in the name of cutting carbon emissions.

 Research and development of “green” technology is a must. Massive investment in sustainable energy including solar, wind and wave power together with an integrated, cheap and efficient national public transport system could rapidly reduce the use of fossil fuels in Britain. But none of this is going to happen unless mass pressure from the labour movement forces the Labour Government to abandon its worship of big business and return to its traditional core values of public service and national industries. The best “green” tax would be to tax the rich by returning to the levels of income tax we had in 1979 which could easily fund the projects needed to avoid the global crisis Stern predicts.

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