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Monthly Archives: August 2009

Another week of postal strikes begins today – affecting East Anglia, London, the South West and other parts of the UK, the Communication Workers Union (CWU) has announced. Royal Mail network drivers will again be striking affecting all cross-country mail services. Strike action is taking place in Nottingham, Leeds...
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev met German Chancellor Angela Merkel in the Black Sea town of Sochi yesterday to discuss carmaker Opel and other industrial projects ahead of the German elections, where jobs will be the central issue. Medvedev’s priority was to cement a deal in which Russia’s largest lender, state...
Political leaders should ‘abandon pro-market policies’ and not just ‘love the NHS’, but look after it, said doctors’ leaders yesterday. The Chairman of the British Medical Association (BMA) Dr Hamish Meldrum welcomed the defence of the NHS by leading Labour and Tory politicians. However, he called on them to abandon pro-market...
THE WITCHHUNT that the Republican Party has organised against President Obama for having the temerity to propose some relatively benign measures to allow 50 million Americans who have no health cover, access to health care, has now reached fever pitch. The chief of US capitalism has been told that...
‘Vale Inco should get back to the bargaining table if it wants to start delivering nickel to its customers again’, according to Wayne Fraser, director of District 6 with the United Steelworkers of America. The mining strike in Canada by members of the United Steelworkers (USW) against Brazilian Vale-Inco intensified...
CWU leaders Billy Hayes and Dave Ward announced the timetable for a national postal strike ballot to a meeting of 500 Communication Workers Union representatives from around the country yesterday. At the briefing meeting at Friends Meeting House, central London, they announced the ballot would commence on September 9 and...
GENERAL Motors and Magna and its Russian partner Sberbank (which includes the Gaz carmaker) have reached an agreement in principle over the contract to allow Magna to buy a stake in GM’s European operation Opel. The deal will be signed when the Opel Trustees (the German government and...
‘THE world economy remains in a deep recession and its financial system in a fragile condition,’ said Bank of England governor Mervyn King yesterday. These were his first words as he opened his press conference, stamping on the desperate optimists who had already claimed to have spotted the...
LONDON postal workers took 24-hour strike action yesterday, with pickets across the capital demanding that the action is stepped up and that the union unites with the rest of the public sector. At Hampstead Delivery Office in north-west London, CWU Unit Rep John Cotier said: ‘It now appears that the...
Marwan Barghouthi, who is serving five life sentences in Israel, has been elected to the governing body of Fatah which dominates the Palestinian Authority, party officials announced on Tuesday. Barghouthi, 50, who was found guilty in 2004 for his role in five deadly attacks against Israelis, was among the new...
THE Serious Fraud Office announced yesterday that there will be no criminal charges brought over the sale and subsequent collapse of MG Rover. Bert Hill, Senior Officer, GMB Birmingham, West Midlands region, told News Line yesterday: ‘News that there are to be no criminal prosecutions has come as no shock...
THE Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has said it does not intend to launch a criminal investigation into the collapse of carmaker MG Rover. It was collapsed in 2005 with the loss of 6,500 jobs. Many of the workers are still unemployed to this day. The four executives in control of MG...
Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu vowed on Sunday never to repeat the 2005 removal of settlers from the Gaza Strip. ‘We will not repeat this mistake,’ he said, referring to former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s decision to unilaterally evacuate all 9,000 settlers from the tiny Palestinian territory. Speaking at the opening...
ALL London postal districts are taking 24-hour strike action today, as the CWU (Communication Workers Union) fights the Royal Mail/Labour government onslaught on postal workers’ jobs, terms, conditions and pensions. CWU members in Stoke on Trent began indefinite strike action yesterday, while other areas are taking strike action on other...

Pfi Disaster For NHS

The British Medical Association (BMA) yesterday condemned ‘commercial involvement in the NHS’ as it emerged that the cost of NHS private finance initiative (PFI) building deals agreed since 1997 is set to soar by almost a quarter from 2011 to 2014 to over £60 billion. PFI debt is forcing trusts...
ON SUNDAY we were told that in the future we will not be able to get the state pension until the age of 70, ensuring the virtual abolition of the state pension since most of us workers will be dead before we reach that age. The workers are to...
THE president of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) cited the unemployment numbers for the month of July as hard evidence that an additional job stimulus program is needed. ‘The high-fives are premature,’ said IAM President Tom Buffenbarger. ‘Fifteen million jobless Americans cannot cheer these numbers. They...
CAPITALISM is truly on the rocks! Unemployment is already heading for three million, of which the majority of the unemployed will be aged between 16 and 24. Now forward comes the Pensions Regulator, David Norgrove, to insist that such is the crisis, people (men and women) will have to work until...
‘What do we want – nationalisation, now! Organise, occupy, fight for the right to work!’ shouted over three hundred sacked Vestas workers and their supporters as they marched from Newport town centre to the Isle of Wight wind turbine factory on Saturday. A group of 25 Vestas workers occupied offices...
RUSSIAN President Dmitry Medvedev warned yesterday that Georgia’s leadership will ‘pay the price’ for its attack on South Ossetia one year ago. He also condemned the US for arming Georgia so that it could attack South Ossetia and for continuing to back the anti-Russian Georgian government. Medvedev said: ‘I am...
ON 4th August, Al-Hayat al-Jadidah daily carried a report saying that ‘Marwan al-Barghouthi, Fatah secretary and Legislative Council member, has sent a letter to Fatah’s Sixth General Congress calling for ‘a discussion on all the issues and revising all past experiences with the utmost courage and objectivity, as well...
Workers who have been occupying Vestas Wind Systems wind turbine factory on the Isle of Wight since 20th July, against its closure and the loss of 625 jobs, left the building yesterday. Bailiffs entered the offices at the Newport site at 12 noon after the firm was granted a...
Postal workers were out on strike across London, Essex, Scotland and the West Midlands yesterday, the first of a number of days of strike action involving 25,000 Communication Workers’ Union (CWU) members. There was a lively picket at the East London Mail Centre and Delivery Office in Bow. CWU member Keith...
THE Vestas occupation clearly shocked the employer and weakened the Labour government to the point where a mass struggle has to be launched by all the trade unions to force the government to nationalise the company. This is a vital struggle, taking place when millions of jobs are under...
STOP Brutal Raid against the Ssangyong Motor Workers! Our Union Members’ Lives are at Stake! TODAY company goons ripped apart the shelters of solidarity supporters encamped outside the plant and arrested Korean Metal Workers Union Vice-President Woo Byeong-kuk at the scene. When the news of the all out raid spread, a...
25,000 postal workers are to go on 24-hour strikes this Friday in London, and in many parts of the country on Friday, Saturday and Monday, while from Tuesday, August 11 Stoke-on-Trent CWU will be taking continuous strike action. There is to be a national briefing for all CWU branch officials...
Tens of thousands of postal workers will go on strike today, tomorrow and Monday as growing unrest has led to the Communication Workers Union (CWU) calling a national strike ballot. The CWU said that postal workers in Birmingham, Coventry, Edinburgh, London and other locations ‘will each take 24 hours...
‘we are calling for strike action in our defence,’ occupying Vestas worker Mark Smith declared yesterday, after bailiffs turned up at the wind turbine blade factory on the Isle of Wight. Workers have been occupying the Newport site since July 20 against plans to close the factory and the loss...

Vestas Day Of Action!

‘We’re calling for a big turnout for our Day Of Action on Saturday,’ occupying Vestas worker Mark Smith told News Line yesterday. Smith said the workers occupying the wind turbine blades manufacturer at Newport, Isle of Wight are determined to continue their struggle against the closure of the factory and...
UNIVERSITIES are being hit hard by the capitalist crisis with thousands of jobs and courses going, and with students facing a lifting of the cap on fees, with the top universities demanding that there must be no cap at all. Universities are to be businesses! This means raising fees, cutting...
Hundreds of South Korean riot police on Tuesday clashed with laid-off workers who have occupied part of Ssangyong Motor Co’s only assembly plant for more than two months, leaving at least 23 people wounded, according to police officials. Scores of police commandos started moving into the painting facility, a four-storey...
SPECULATIVE casino banking, without risk for the bankers, thanks to the Brown government’s pledge to never let a big bank fail, is the way forward, has been spelled out in practice at Barclays, in the first six months of the year. Barclays has just made a £2.98bn profit for...
Mustafa Setmariam Naser was ‘disappeared’ while in US custody in 2005. Legal charity Reprieve on Monday demanded that the British government reveal details of the secret illegal detention of ‘ghost’ prisoner Mustafa Setmariam Naser on Diego Garcia and asked two UN Special Rapporteurs to urgently investigate his disappearance. Reprieve said it...
SIXTEEN workers, eight trade union representatives and the partner of one of the staff who were brought before the High Court after they refused to leave the Thomas Cook premises in Dublin on Monday night were freed yesterday by a judge. They were arrested at the Cook travel shop...
‘I’M not leaving,’ occupying Vestas worker Mark Smith told News Line yesterday. He was speaking in the wake of a hearing at Newport Court where the judge granted owners Vestas Wind Systems a possession order against 11 of the workers occupying the Isle of Wight factory. The workers barricaded themselves into...
THE Conclusions and recommendations of the Foreign Affairs Committee hearings on ‘Global Security: Afghanistan and Pakistan’ make grim reading for supporters of the imperialist intervention. On the role of the NATO and ISAF Operation Enduring Freedom the committee concludes that the ‘first ever NATO deployment outside of NATO’s “area” ’...
JUST imagine the furore there would be if British migrants to India were told that they would have to be conversant in Hindi, be well acquainted with Indian history or customs, and be fully and unquestioningly in support of all of the Indian government’s military adventures, to acquire Indian...
Workers who have been occupying the Vestas turbine blade plant on the Isle of Wight for fourteen days over plans to cut 625 jobs yesterday reiterated their call for nationalisation. The factory was due to shut on July 31 but is now set to close on August 10. Referring to...
Legal charity Reprieve yesterday demanded the British government reveal details of the secret illegal detention of ‘ghost’ prisoner Mustafa Setmariam Naser on Diego Garcia and asked two UN Special Rapporteurs to urgently investigate his disappearance. Reprieve said in a statement: ‘Mustafa Setmariam Naser was ‘disappeared’ while in US custody in...
The University and College Union (UCU) has warned universities and colleges to think very carefully before entering into partnerships with private firms. This is after new research showed that every single joint venture between the private company INTO University Partnerships and its partner university or college made a loss in...
‘It was a really good march on Saturday,’ occupying Vestas worker Chris Ash told News Line yesterday. Workers have been occupying to stop the closure of the Vestas Isle of Wight wind turbine factory since 20th July. ‘He called for nationalisation. We definitely want the factory nationalised. ‘Now we are looking forward...
‘We walked out at 9am today as we said we would,’ Hampstead Delivery Office Communication Workers’ Union (CWU) Unit rep John Cotier said on Saturday. He told News Line: ‘We intend to send a letter from all our members at Hampstead to the CWU head office to tell them to...
GENERAL Sir Richard Dannatt, in his last speech before retiring as Chief of Staff, did his best to open up a second front at home when he suggested that the only way to win the war was through militarising the UK. He demanded that defence spending be ‘underpinned by a...
AS the capitalist crisis deepens, the Brown government’s attacks on the public sector become more frenzied. It is to be privatised or part-privatised. Hundreds of thousands of workers are to be sacked, and wages, pensions and conditions of service slashed. The Civil Service has already lost tens of thousands of...