Solidarity 031, 29 May 2003

Anti-Semitism? Anti-Zionism! Learn how to do it smoothly,Tammy! (2003)


Sean Matgamna

A small outcry greeted Tam Dalyell MP's assertion that there are too many Jews in the entourages of Tony Blair and George W Bush, and that those Jews make Britain's and the USA's policy on the Middle East.

I found the responses to Dalyell encouraging, but also seriously off the point. The important and effective antisemites now are not those who talk like Hitlerites about Jewish influence and Jewish "cabals,'. Such people can usually expect the response Dalyell got.

Nursery nurses strike

Five thousand nursery nurses across Scotland started a programme of rolling strike action on May 21st. The action started with walk-outs in the West of Scotland. Action in Edinburgh and East Lothian follows on Wednesday and Thursday 28/29 May.

Workers' Liberty at Lutte Ouvriere fete

The Alliance for Workers' Liberty will be at Lutte Ouvriere's fete at Presles, near Paris, 7-9 June. We have a stall, and are hosting a forum:

"How do we stop wars?: Lessons from the British Stop The War Coalition."

Speaker: Martin Thomas

Saturday 7 June, 8pm, Forum area 1

(check schedule at the fete for confirmation: owing to the volatile and exciting political situation, the schedule is subject to change!).

Come and meet us!

Details before Saturday: 07719 283132

Galloway vindicated? We don't think so...

Following an article in the Mail on Sunday, 11 May 2003, Socialist Worker (17 May) has claimed that George Galloway has been vindicated against the charges of taking money from the Iraqi government of Saddam Hussein..
The Mail on Sunday, which has employed Galloway as a columnist, says that documents adduced by the Christian Science Monitor were probably forgeries.

The Christian Science Monitor's story about Galloway receiving money from the Iraqi government came after the Daily Telegraph published documents which it claimed to have found in Baghdad.

FBU:New deal is 'the old one rehashed'

By Jill Mountford

The leaders of the Fire Brigades Union are yet again recommending that their members accept a pay offer which they have negotiated with the employers and which is backed by the Government.
FBU General Secretary Andy Gilchrist has touted it as "differing considerably from previous offers". It is worth 15.2% over two and a half years. The union has previously rejected 16% over three years.

Christopher Hill and the making of the English Revolution

"The master of more than an old Oxford College", Edward Thompson used to say of Christopher Hill, historian and Master of Balliol College, Oxford, who died in March 2003. Hill was the pre-eminent Marxist historian writing on the 17th century and the English Revolution. Harvey Kaye, in his book about the remarkable generation of "British Marxist Historians", judged Hill "one of the greatest historians to work in the English language in the twentieth century". In this issue of Solidarity Alan Johnson begins an appreciation of Hill, his view of history and the significance of his work.

As we were saying

What Solidarity has said recently about George Galloway is not new, and not a case of us "moving under pressure of the bourgeois press". We said more or less everything we now say about George Galloway nine years ago, in the editorial from Socialist Organiser reprinted in part here. We said it again in Solidarity two months ago, in an article which began by solidarising with George Galloway where he had called on British soldiers not to obey "illegal orders" and then went on to argue that Galloway had no place in the anti-war movement.

Debating political representation

Solidarity has been debating whether unions should change their rules governing their political fund, to make it easier to donate money to political parties other than the Labour Party. The debate has widened out to take in many issues about working-class political representation. We print below some contributions and invite further discussion of this crucial issue for the labour movement.

Turn to the class, before it's too late

For independent workers' representation!

Socialist Alliance members, from a number of local branches, met in London on 25 May. They decided to start the process of setting up a faction within the Socialist Alliance on the principle of independent working-class politics, as against ?pink-green? electoral blocs.

A number of other Alliance activists had expressed interest in the idea, but were unable to attend on the Bank Holiday Sunday.

Northern Ireland Elections cancelled; the 'process' continues

By Jack Cleary

The Northern Ireland elections, due under the Good Friday Agreement, have been postponed indefinitely. Since last October the power-sharing government in the Six Counties of Northern Ireland has been suspended, and there is no immediate prospect of it being restored.

Thus, five years after the Good Friday Agreement, the Six-Counties-level political structures which the Agreement created, the Northern Ireland Assembly and the government based on it, have ground to a halt. Northern Ireland is now without province-wide political structures.

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