Iraqi students defy Islamist militia

Submitted by AWL on 30 March, 2005 - 11:32

From the Federation of Workers Councils and Unions in Iraq (FWCUI). Students at the University of Basra went on strike for over a week in March. They organised demonstrations outside government buildings in Basra. The strike and demonstrations were about a vicious attack on Basra students by the Islamists in the city.

Education not for sale! New Labour's Academies

Submitted by AWL on 30 March, 2005 - 11:28

At the recent National Union of Teachers conference, delegates voted to fight the Government’s planned expansion of the Academy programme. Academies are publicly-funded independent schools, new schools built in “deprived” areas or where schools are deemed to be “failing”.

Vote for our side, not the least bad of theirs

Submitted by AWL on 30 March, 2005 - 11:18

In the Guardian on 26 March, Tariq Ali, who back in the late 1960s and early 70s was perhaps Britain’s best-known Marxist, called for a “tactical vote” for the Liberal Democrats in the General Election likely on 5 May.

Because the Liberal Democrats have become much more left-wing? On the contrary, they have been carefully “re-positioning” themselves as business-friendly and pro-privatisation. At their spring conference in March the Lib-Dems passed policy to ban any strikes which “will cause far reaching damage to the economy and national interest”.

Should socialists support PIRA rule in the Catholic ghettos?

Submitted by AWL on 30 March, 2005 - 11:13 Author: Sean Matgamna

The murder of Robert McCartney has been “seized upon” by opponents of Sinn Fein/IRA in Belfast, London, Dublin and Washington, as a club with which to beat them into submission and force the IRA out of existence.

The press, TV and politicians have “built up” the McCartney case into something it would not be without them — if it did not fit in with their political needs now. A number of articles in Solidarity have, in passing, noted this.

PCS Socialist Caucus: calling off pensions strike is a mistake

Submitted by Janine on 24 March, 2005 - 9:20

The Socialist Caucus, a left-wing rank and file grouping in PCS, has made the following comment:

March 23rd Strike: A Mistake Has Been Made

Was the Union right to call off the 23rd March strike?

In our opinion - No

This is not because we underestimate what has been achieved in getting the Government to agree to talks on all pension issues including that of raising the pension retirement age to 65.

Four US anti-war activists threatened with the sack

Submitted by AWL on 23 March, 2005 - 2:51

Carol Lang, an employee of the City University of New York (CUNY) and for many years a militant trade unionist, was arrested on Tuesday 11th March at her workplace by four plain-clothes policeman.

She had demonstrated the previous Wednesday against the presence of a group of recruiters from the American army (1) who came to propagandise on the campus. Carol, along with several other people, had been faced an aggressive response from the campus security.