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Monthly Archives: March 2011

THE US State Department urged US citizens on Tuesday not to travel to Bahrain and suggested Americans there should leave at once due to the ongoing political revolution against the feudal authorities. This followed the entry of 1,000 Saudi troops with tanks and 500 Omani policemen into the...
The Health and Social care bill brings in the legislation to privatise the delivery and commissioning of healthcare in England. Coupled with the massive cuts, the NHS would end up providing a minimal core service, leaving patients having to pay, get insurance or go without. The bill reverses the gains of...
GPs, hospital consultants and junior doctors are convening today for a very important Special Representative Meeting (SRM) of the British Medical Association (BMA) to consider the government’s planned shake-up of the NHS. The SRM was called following demands that the BMA membership be allowed to decide whether or not to...
‘We have been humbled by nature’ the Japanese ambassador to Britain said of the earthquake and subsequent tsunami that has devastated northern Japan with the tragic loss of life now estimated to be in excess of 10,000. The ambassador could have added that international capitalism is set to be humbled...
LECTURERS who are members of UCU at Liverpool Hope University have voted overwhelmingly in favour of strike action in their ongoing row with the institution over job losses and how the institution is responding to potential cuts in funding. Over four-fifths (83%) of UCU members at Liverpool Hope who voted,...
The leaders of the 22 member Arab League meeting on Saturday came out decisively on the side of imperialism when they issued a call for the United Nations to impose a ‘no-fly zone’ over Libya. Claiming that ‘all Arab states’ agreed, the secretary-general of the league, Amr Mousa, announced that it...

Japan Shut Down

Japan’s nuclear crisis intensified yesterday as authorities raced to combat the threat of multiple reactor meltdowns, while investors feared a share market crash. More than 170,000 people have been evacuated from the northeastern coast where fears spread over radioactive contamination. Nuclear plant operators were frantically trying to keep temperatures down...
NEXT Tuesday the doctors’ trade union, the BMA, meets in London for an extraordinary Special Representative Meeting (SRM). 350 representatives of its 140,000 members, consultants, GPs and junior doctors, will consider an agenda of 500 or so motions on the coalition’s Health and Social Care Bill – the vehicle...

Bma Revolution!

Doctors to demand referendum on Health Bill – No confidence in Lansley and Coalition An Uprising among doctors against the government’s plan to smash up and privatise the NHS, contained in the Health and Social Care Bill, is set to erupt at next Tuesday’s Special Representative Meeting of the...
The 287 immigrant workers in Athens and Salonica ended their 44-day hunger strike last Wednesday evening with jubilations. The immigrant workers, most of them of northern African origin, accepted a set of government proposals on temporary stay, no deportations and an eight-year waiting period (down from 12 years) for full...
RMT General Secretary Bob Crow warned yesterday that the Hutton Review will be ‘the spark that lights the blue touch paper of co-ordinated strike action’. Crow said: ‘It is crystal clear from the Hutton Review that, from nurses to transport staff, the government intend to make staff work longer, pay more...
THE French ruling class yesterday officially recognised the Libyan counter-revolutionary rebels of the Transitional National Council as the country's legitimate government, and is due to send an ambassador to Benghazi, and receive one from the right wing accomplices of imperialism. France is also expected to send military equipment and ‘instructors’...
THE PCS is discussing co-ordinated strike action with other unions to fight the Tory-LibDem onslaught on the pensions of millions of health, local council, civil servants and other public sector workers. In advance of the attack outlined in Lord Hutton’s report on public sector pensions yesterday, the PCS said: ‘Any...
Egypt’s ambassador to the Palestinian territories Yasser Othman on Tuesday said there will be ‘big changes’ in Egypt’s policies towards the Gaza Strip. Othman told reporters that Egyptian officials are considering a package of steps to facilitate the situation in the Gaza Strip. The facilities will be applied to the Rafah...
‘The NHS should not be run in the same way as privatised industries such as water, gas, and telecommunications,’ the BMA said yesterday. The warning comes as MPs prepare to debate the sections of the Health and Social Care Bill relating to new powers to enforce competition in the NHS...
TODAY’S publication of the Hutton Report on public sector pensions will be like a red rag to a bull as far as the membership of the public sector trade unions are concerned. The Tory-LibDem cabinet ‘Star Chamber’, headed by Cabinet minister Francis Maude, is working on the basis that these...
THE Irish coalition has been officially formed between two right-wing parties in the Republic, Fine Gael and the Labour Party, and will be unveiled today. Labour cannot be accused of not knowing what it is doing. Labour leader Eamon Gilmore told his just concluded party delegate conference that the...
‘Well over a million students at 63 UK universities will be hit with strike action this month unless a dispute over changes to staff pensions can be resolved’, the University and College Union (UCU) warned yesterday. The UCU announced plans for strike action in Scotland on Thursday, March 17; in...
Hundreds of members of the General Federation of Iraqi Workers (GFIW) demonstrated in Al-Tahrir Square in the centre of Baghdad last Saturday, to demand the returning of union work and the drafting of its related laws. A GFIW statement stated that the workers’ demands include the formation of a...
‘Very deliberately the government wishes to turn back the clock to the 1930s and 1940s, when there were private, charitable and co-operative providers of healthcare,’ warns Dr Mark Porter, chairman of the BMA’s hospital consultant committee. Expressing his concerns that the Health and Social Care Bill will result in wholesale...
Dr Mark Porter, chairman of the British Medical Association (BMA) Hospital Consultants Committee, in an interview with the Guardian newspaper, has spelt out clearly what the government’s parliamentary bill to force competition between hospitals and bring in the policy of the NHS being thrown open to ‘any willing provider’...
THE Greek prime minister Yiorghos Papandreou met with his government’s Defence and Foreign Ministers last Thursday to discuss Libya following talks last Wednesday in Athens with the US State Department’s Assistant Secretary for Europe and Asia Philip Gordon. After meeting the Greek Foreign Minister Dimitris Droutsas, Gordon thanked...
Statement of the International Committee of the Fourth International IN THE first months of this year, north Africa has seen the eruption of colossal revolutionary developments, from east to west, that have toppled presidents in Tunisia and Egypt, and staggered Kings and Emirs in the Middle East and the Gulf,...
‘There is no doubt that maternity care, like the rest of the NHS, is looking into a storm of possible cuts to services,’ said Cathy Warwick, General Secretary of the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) yesterday. She added: ‘I am here to warn of the folly of such a course.’ Warwick...
Last Friday, Mervyn King, Governor of the Bank of England, issued a dire warning that Britain risks another financial crisis unless the government introduces reforms of the banks. In an interview with the Daily Telegraph, King claimed that, ‘We allowed a system to build up which contained the seeds of...
Post Office workers have voted overwhelmingly in favour of strike action in a dispute over pay, job security and the future of the Crown Post Office network, the Communication Workers Union (CWU) announced yesterday. The ballot closed yesterday with 93 per cent voting yes making the result in favour of...
THURSDAY’S by-election in Barnsley Central constituency didn’t just humiliate the LibDems, it drove a stake through the heart of the Tories’ coalition partner and destroyed any claim by Clegg and Cameron to have even the veneer of bourgeois electoral legitimacy to cloak their plans to lay waste to the...
GPs have already expressed their opposition to the Coalition plan to privatise the NHS being pushed into law by Health Secretary Lansley. They have also succeeded in convincing their leaders to hold a Special Representative Meeting of the BMA trade union on March 15th to discuss the Tory plans...
NATO imperialist allies were split on Wednesday over deploying a ‘no-fly zone’ over Libya’s skies, with fears raised about angering the ‘Arab street’ in what would be a complex operation requiring bombing raids. France – unlike the US – sees a need for UN backing on NATO intervention in Libya. As...
More universities risk going bust under the government’s proposals to axe teaching budgets and replace the money with higher student fees, according to a report released yesterday by the National Audit Office (NAO). The University and College Union (UCU) said the report’s ‘worrying conclusions’ were further proof that the government...
MPs on the House of Commons foreign affairs committee ran up the white flag yesterday when they declared in their report that peace talks must be held with the Taleban in Afghanistan, since the current General Petraeus’s tactic in the country, that of fighting the Taleban to a standstill,...
THE vast majority of doctors believe the Tory-LibDem coalition government’s health policies threaten the future of the NHS, finds a poll for the BMA. The Ipsos MORI survey of BMA members, published today, was carried out in January and reveals widespread opposition to ‘increased competition’ in the NHS. Statements garnering the...
MESSAGES of solidarity are being received by the workers of Wisconsin from trade unions and trade unionists all over the world, supporting their battle to defend their right to free collective bargaining against a Republican state administration that is determined to smash it on behalf of the bosses and...
THE right-wing Fine Gael party is set to form a coalition with its traditional partner, the right-wing Labour party, after a ‘political revolution’ which saw the party that has ruled the Republic for decades, Fianna Fail, smashed and reduced to third place with just 20 seats, and with just...
The ITUC on Monday expressed deep concern over statements attributed to the new Minister of Manpower in Egypt, Ismail Fahmy, that ‘the issue of trade union rights is kept on hold until such a time that the labour code is revised . . . and that the ministry will...
THE Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has accused the US of preparing to invade Libya to steal its oil. ‘A campaign of lies is being spun together regarding Libya,’ said Chavez, in a televised speech to a crowd of graduates who had just received diplomas from state universities. ‘I’m not going...
Iraqi puppet prime minister Nuri Al-Maliki warned his cabinet on Sunday to shape up within 100 days or face ‘changes’, as protest organisers called for a fresh set of rallies and religious leaders demanded reforms. Maliki’s remarks came after a third provincial governor stepped down following a series of demonstrations...
Ed Miliband yesterday warned that average pay will be no higher in 2015 than it was in 2003, quoting figures published by the Resolution Foundation think-tank. He said that a ‘cost of living crisis’ is hitting the working class and middle class in a speech to a Resolution Foundation meeting...
The civil war by US capitalism against its own working class has erupted with a vengeance in the state of Wisconsin. In this state, the newly elected right-wing Republican governor, Scott Walker, is attempting to destroy the trade union movement by stripping the right of collective bargaining from public...