COMMUNITIES Secretary Ruth Kelly, launching a Commission on Integration and Cohesion yesterday, declared: ‘I believe that we should celebrate and clearly articulate the benefits that migration and diversity have brought’. Kelly, a member of the reactionary Catholic secret society the Opus Dei, however qualified her remarks by saying: ‘But while celebrating that diversity we should also recognise that the landscape is changing, changing rapidly. And we should not shy away from asking – and trying to respond to – some of the more difficult questions that arise.’
Calling for ‘honesty’ she added: ‘Patterns of immigration to Britain are becoming more complex. Our new residents are not the Windrush generation. They are more diverse, coming from countries ranging from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe, from South Africa to Somalia.
‘And one of the outcomes of that complexity – and increased global interconnectedness – is that global tensions are being reflected on the streets of local communities. New migrants protect the fierce loyalties developed in war-torn parts of Europe. Muslims feel the reverberations from the Middle East. Wider global trends have an impact.’
This however is not new. As Kelly knows, massive Irish migration in the 19th and 20th century to Britain led to conflicts in the major cities between Irish nationalists and the capitalist state, including Fenian bombings and the execution of the Manchester Martyrs.
Many of the migrant Irish despised British workers for ‘supporting imperialism’, while British workers responded that the Irish undercut wage levels.
Similarly the mass migration to Britain from those fleeing Tsarist repression and pogroms led to the emergence of various anarchist and other trends in Britain – witness the siege of Sydney Street in the early 20th century – and to Britain becoming the base of operations, for a period, of Vladimir Lenin and Leon Trotsky.
Kelly continued: ‘As time passes, the challenges of integration become more apparent to those who have settled here. . .’ Finally she gets to the point.
‘And for some communities in particular, we need to acknowledge that life in Britain has started to feel markedly different since the attacks on 9/11 in New York and on 7/7 in London – even more so since the events of two weeks ago.’
She adds: ‘I believe this is why we have moved from a period of uniform consensus on the value of multiculturalism, to one where we can encourage that debate by questioning whether it is encouraging separateness. . . In our attempt to avoid imposing a single British identity and culture, have we ended up with some communities living in isolation of each other, with no common bonds between them? . . .
We must not be censored by political correctness, and we must not tiptoe around important issues. . . Even within a framework of mutual tolerance, I believe that there are non-negotiable rules, understood by all groups, both new and established. We must be clear and unafraid to say that we expect these will be shared and followed by all who live here.’
Multi-culturalism was the chosen method of rule of the British bourgeoisie, particularly after the Brixton, Toxteth, and Tottenham riots by the sons and daughters of the ‘Windrush generation’. This method of rule allowed, in particular, the Asian and Muslim bourgeoisie and petty-bourgeoisie to dominate and run their various communities.
However, the ‘New World Order’ offensive of Bush and Blair, the rape of Iraq, Palestine and now the Lebanon has put the cat amongst the pigeons and created the conditions where the ‘natural rulers’ of the ‘minority communities’ are ignored by the masses, particularly the youth.
Now the ruling class declares that ‘multi-culturalism’ is to be dumped, spelling out that there are to be ‘non-negotiable rules’ – i.e. there is to be a dictatorship over the Asian Muslim community.
The way forward against this prospect of dictatorship is to unite the whole of the working class to go forward to a socialist revolution to smash British imperialism and establish a socialist Britain, as part of a socialist world, free of the culture of imperialist exploitation and mass murder.