Civil liberties, justice, crime

Labour's martyrs: the story of Sacco and Vanzetti

Author: 

James P Cannon and Max Shachtman

Workers' Liberty 3/53, published as a pull-out in Solidarity 397.

The story of the Sacco and Vanzetti case, told by James P Cannon and Max Shachtman, who were leading activists in the defence campaign.

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The story of the Sacco and Vanzetti case, told by James P Cannon and Max Shachtman, who were leading activists in the defence campaign.

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Editorials - March 1995

Editorial comments on the ongoing influence of Stalinism in the British labour movement, the need for a campaign to defend the welfare state, and calling for justice for Mumia Abu-Jamal.

Click here to download article as pdf.

Click here to download the pdf

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Manning finally free

Author: 

Simon Nelson

Chelsea Manning was released from Fort Leavenworth, the maximum security prison on 18 May, after seven years of harassment, brutality and enforced solitary confinement.

Manning was sentenced in August 2013 for leaking classified wire cables and military records to WikiLeaks. At the time she was a military intelligence analyst and for slightly bizarre reasons will remain classified as a member of the military for a period after her release.

Chelsea Manning’s crime was only to expose the inner workings of US imperialism where, through both its diplomatic relations and areas of its military manoeuvres, civilian life is treated purely as “collateral damage”.

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No prosecutions for electoral fraud

Author: 

Simon Nelson

Nominations to stand as an MP in the general election have now closed. About 30 mostly Tory MPs could breathe a sigh of relief as the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) confirmed that “no criminal charges have been authorised” over alleged cases of electoral fraud.

This follows investigations by 14 police forces into the use of the “Battlebus2015” in marginal seats.
The CPS accept that there is evidence that returns on electoral spending were inaccurate but these
cannot prove “to the criminal standard that any candidate or agent was dishonest.”

Tory MPs breathe sigh of relief as Crown Prosecution Service confirms that “no criminal charges have been authorised” over alleged cases of electoral fraud.

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The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

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Letters

I thought Charlotte Zalens’ article “Does £70,000 make you rich?” (Solidarity 436) was really useful, informative and thought provoking. Charlotte made three important points.

One, that £70,000 is way beyond the £22,400 median wage. Two, that a salary of £70,000 places someone in the top tenth of the population by income. And, three that income inequality at the top of the scale is far greater than at the bottom.

Taxation, the super-rich and the rest of us; Judges should be elected.

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US rush to state killings

Author: 

Stephen Larkin

On Friday 21 April, the US state of Arkansas carried out the first in a series of four executions, all scheduled before the end of the month. Ledell Lee was killed at the age of 51, after more than 20 years on death row; his was the US’s seventh execution this year, and the first to take place in Arkansas since 2005.

The circumstances surrounding Ledell Lee’s execution are the kind of sordid ones we might expect from an episode of Fargo, not from a supposedly impartial judiciary, in a supposedly advanced democracy.

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Tackle the roots of the new jihadism

Author: 

Simon Nelson

It is probably not possible to know and therefore pointless to speculate why Khalid Masood carried out the attack on Westminster Bridge and the Palace of Westminster on 22 March. Better to focus our thoughts on sympathy with the victims of the attack and building the better society that can works against such behaviour.

The much more random and chaotic violence of jihadists, and the ability of these groups to find sympathisers without ever having talked to them, is a distinctly modern development.

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Marine A is no hero

Author: 

Will Sefton

Marine A: Right, get him closer in so PGSS can’t see what we’re doing to him… Marine A: Where is the CAT, Ugly call sign? [Referring to the helicopter that is watching them pretending to apply a field dressing to an injured Afghan insurgent.] Marine B: It’s gone that way? Marine A: Yeah Marine B: Went south, mate? (Gunshot) M: What was that? Marine A: There you are, shuffle off this mortal coil you cunt. It’s nothing you wouldn’t do to us. Marine B: I know. M: Exactly. Marine A: Obviously this doesn’t go anywhere fellas. Marine B: Yeah, roger, mate.

After a campaign by former and current members of the military, the Daily Mail and his family, Marine A, Sergeant Alexander Blackman, has had his conviction for shooting a wounded member of the Taliban in 2011 quashed and he will now be tried for manslaughter.

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Guard Martin Zee wins court case

Author: 

Janine Booth

RMT member Martin Zee has won an important legal battle concerning his actions as a train guard.

Martin was working as a guard on a Merseyrail train in 2015 when an elderly passenger tried to board a train after the door closure procedure had started and the door alarms were sounding. She fell between the platform and the train and was injured. Martin carried out his role properly, ensuring the train and track were made safe and climbing down to support and reassure the passenger until the emergency services arrived.

A guard prosecuted when a passenger was injured as been found not guilty.

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Business as usual at Met

Author: 

Gemma Short

The new head of the Met Police, Cressida Dick, is no departure from tradition for the police. Dick was the designated senior officer in the control room in charge of deciding if a special shoot-to-kill policy was needed on the day that Jean Charles de Menezes was shot and killed in 2005.

Cressida Dick was the designated senior officer in the control room in charge of deciding if a special shoot-to-kill policy was needed on the day that Jean Charles de Menezes was shot and killed in 2005.

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