FOLLOWING the remarks of Dannatt, the armed forces chief of staff, about the country having lost its ‘moral compass’ since the ‘anchor of Christian values’ has been ‘pulled up’ by politicians, another section of the Christian capitalist state has joined the battle for the soul of the nation – the Special Branch secret police, using the Department of Education and its chief Alan Johnson as its vehicle.
Already, the correspondence has gone out from the DfES to the universities, that ‘all people of Asian appearance’ are suspect, and that university authorities, lecturers and students have a duty to carefully watch their every move, and weigh their every word for signs that they have terrorist potential or are actual terrorists.
There is no doubt that behind this panic measure stands a terrified ruling class, frightened that its rape of Iraq, Palestine and the Lebanon, and its ongoing destruction of the Welfare State – including free state education has lost the support of young people for capitalism, and radicalised and even revolutionised very many young people.
Their solution is to return to the days of the Witchfinder General and to turn the universities into a vast listening post where students with the wrong sort of complexion will be the first to have their phones tapped, their mobiles electronically monitored, their computers secretly checked, their student society meetings recorded and videoed, and their every word or action made the property of the Special Branch and the capitalist state.
The world of learning is to be poisoned, and be transformed into a witch-hunters paradise, where Bush and Blair’s ‘war against terror’ takes priority over education; a world where the idea will be to nip the ‘terrorist conspiracy’ in the bud, and where the Special Branch agent provocateur will be king.
His or her role will be to allegedly pre-empt acts of terror by getting young people arrested and convicted for acts preparatory to terrorism.
The agent provocateur (he or she) will be a person who joins the Islamic and left societies, and makes use of the anger of young people at imperialist atrocities, at home and abroad, to get them arrested.
The provocateur will either give support to freedom fighters and propose ways of assisting them – thereby supporting and encouraging terrorism – or raise and gain support for controversial ideas which the state holds to be supportive of terrorism, or propose taking action of one sort or another that the state can then use to arrest all and sundry for actions preparatory to committing a terrorist act or encouraging terrorism. If all else fails, they can be charged with not reporting their knowledge to the state that a terrorist act was in preparation.
In short, the state intends to create an atmosphere in the universities where nobody can be trusted, and where everybody is under suspicion.
Commenting on the impact the proposed measures would have on higher education, UCU joint general secretary, Sally Hunt, said: ‘Academic freedom is a key tenet of any democratic society, even if this sometimes means the discussion of ideas that many would find unacceptable. Universities have traditionally encouraged debate, allowed students the opportunity to broaden their horizons and challenge opinion.
‘UCU fought hard to stop academic freedom being eroded in the recent Terrorism Bill. We will not accept further government attempts to restrict academic freedom or free speech on campus. There is little point in having these nominal freedoms if they can be removed when certain people don’t like what they hear.’
Well said! Now therefore, is the time to nip this latest assault on democratic rights and academic freedom in the bud.
The trade unions must take action to bring down the Labour government and bring in a workers’ government that will restore the Welfare State fully, including free state education, and withdraw all British troops from Iraq and Afghanistan, allowing the people of these countries to decide their own fate, including how their countries are to be run.
This is the only way to defend basic rights. Overthrowing British capitalism and imperialism is the only way to begin the advance to a terror free world.