Solidarity 242, 18 April 2012

Syria: killing continues as ceasefire falters

Submitted by Matthew on 18 April, 2012 - 12:41

Following significant diplomatic pressure, and faced with the possibility of losing Russian and Chinese backing, the Syrian government signed up to a UN ceasefire plan.

For now, in some regions, there is an uneasy peace. In other areas the truce has collapsed already.

Between the “ceasefire” formally coming into force on Thursday 13 April and the arrival of the first UN observers four days later, at least 41 people, mostly civilians, were reported killed.

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“Greek youth will arm themselves”

Submitted by Matthew on 18 April, 2012 - 12:38

On Wednesday 4 April a 77 year old pensioner, Dimitris Xristoulas, committed public suicide in Syntagma Square, Athens. He left a militant political note denouncing his “murderers”.

His murderers are those who have robbed the pensions and salaries of Greek workers, who have dismantled and destroyed public services who have indebted Greece until at least 2020 through an austerity program.

Comments

Submitted by david kirk on Sat, 21/04/2012 - 07:06

SPA's contribution above is Anti Semetic trolling crap disgised as psuedo history.

It starts talking about the fate of the Palestinians but thats basically a figleaf for posing the idea that "the jews", "The Zionists" & "isreali's" are inter changeable terms. It also hints at the old Catholic charge of "Blood Libel" being true and a vast Zionist conspiracy. It generalises by saying: "The Eastern European Jews, who were Marxist". thid is classic rightwing Anti Semetic conflation.

Its so called facts are also just lies or misunderstanding. Mosses Hess was a contemporary and collaborator with Marx. However he did not write any parts of the Communist manifesto and any students of Marx know the "opiate of the masses" quote is from A Critique Of Hegel's Philosophy of Right. Also the writer obviously has never even read the actual quote:

" Religious suffering is, at one and the same time, the expression of real suffering and a protest against real suffering. Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people.

The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is the demand for their real happiness. To call on them to give up their illusions about their condition is to call on them to give up a condition that requires illusions. The criticism of religion is, therefore, in embryo, the criticism of that vale of tears of which religion is the halo."

Submitted by guenter on Sat, 21/04/2012 - 13:50

whats up with the trolls above, fighting about israel &palestine?
the article above is about an greek comrade who did comitt suicide, cause he had nothing more to eat. and its about greek youth, discussing arming.
pls talk about this subject in ur comments!

Submitted by AWL on Mon, 23/04/2012 - 10:20

Guenter is absolutely right. It's not clear at all why a comment on Israel-Palestine has been posted on an article about Greece.

I will delete the comment tomorrow morning if no one can suggest a good reason why not to.

Sacha Ismail

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Mobilise to reject the NHS pensions deal!

Submitted by Matthew on 18 April, 2012 - 12:35

NHS members of public sector union Unison are currently voting on whether to accept the government’s deal for reforming their pension scheme.

Despite the 30 November strike action, the deal remains a “work longer, pay more, get less” outcome for workers and should be rejected.

Red Pill, an industrial bulletin for healthworkers produced by members and friends of Workers’ Liberty working in the NHS, is campaigning for rejection.

To download the latest bulletin to distribute in your workplace, visit here.

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Industrial news in brief

Submitted by Matthew on 18 April, 2012 - 12:31

Workers at BMW’s Oxford plant have voted by 97% to oppose management’s latest pay offer.

The consultative ballot, which was conducted by the Unite union, polled 2,000 employees.

The pay deal included a basic increase of 2.21%, of which nearly 2% was contingent on working extra hours. Since the ballot, BMW bosses have offered further talks. While “welcoming” the talks, Unite has said it will press on with plans to move to a full ballot for industrial action to win a better deal.

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Nottingham teachers fight five-term year plan

Submitted by Matthew on 18 April, 2012 - 11:16

Nottingham teachers struck for a second day on 17 March in their campaign of industrial action against the Local Authority.

Inspired by Michael Gove's plans to change school holiday patterns, the Labour-controlled council has attempted to force through a change to a five term year in Nottingham city schools.

Implementation of the five term year will mean a shortening of the six week summer holiday to four weeks and a regular pattern of eight week terms.

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A mass paper of the labour movement

Submitted by Matthew on 18 April, 2012 - 11:11

“’Let the landlord go hang for his rent, I am sending it to you.’ Would this be done for a Liberal newspaper? Would it be done for a Tory newspaper? Not likely.”

Daily Herald, 26 October 1912

“The marvel is that the paper was ever produced at all.”

George Lansbury, The Miracle of Fleet Street

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Learning about our tradition

Submitted by Matthew on 18 April, 2012 - 11:01

Mike Wood reviews the new online archive of the first series of the New Politics journal.


The American website UNZ has recently made available the entire run of the first volume of New Politics journal, from 1960 to 1978. This is a valuable resource for those interested in the history of the socialist movement and should ensure a wider readership for a tradition of thought that has largely been forgotten by the left today.

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Abolish money without class struggle?

Submitted by Matthew on 18 April, 2012 - 10:49

Janet Burstall reviews Life without money: building fair and sustainable communities, edited by Anitra Nelson and Frans Timmerman.


This book argues that abolition of “the market” is the key to replacing capitalism. The medium of the market is money, so abolition of money is the way to “non-market socialism, a moneyless, wageless, classless, stateless world”.

After the poisonous decades of Stalinism and the failure of social democracy to challenge capitalism, it is welcome to find socialists looking for a different vision of socialism.

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