Thursday, January 12, 2006

Socialist Resistance No 31 January 2006

Socialist Resistance's crowded front-page calls for a 'Break from Bankrupt Labour' and calls for both Respect (still the best hope for the Left despite SR's criticisms of the Respect conference (this is clearly put together before Galloway's sojurn into Big Brother House) and the RMT to show a lead. They want a Respect speaker at the RMT conference on January 21st. They have an editorial page on the Respect conference which delegitimised political discussion and suggested that the SR movers of a resolution around LGBT rights were Islamophobes. The leaderships debating style of misrepresentation is that it could kill the organisation. SR will contniue to build Respect. The Respect conference also gets coverage with a report from Sean Thompson of Camden, which highlighted some positives before going into the negatives. Sean thinks a majority oif delegates were from the SWP and it was clumsily stage-managed, that the leadership was hypersensitive to criticism, etc. Sean's conclusion: "I believe that until we become clearly the most oen and democratic organisation on the left we are likely to continue to lose influence within the labour movement and become increasingly politically marginalised." There are additional reprts from Preston, Essex and Southwark.

Other pieces of note include a couple of pages devoted to the attack on the NHS. An interview with the secretary of Imaam, an organisation of LGBT Muslims has the distressing standfirst of 'We only used to face the challenge of non-LGBT Muslims attacking us: now we have LGBT people attacking us for choosing to be Muslims." Mark Findlay has a page devotedto a history of LBGT rights in the labour movement as background to saying that Respect needs to pay 'real attention' to this issue.

There's a piece about the way Sinn Fein has been rocked by the 'outing' of Denis Donaldson as a British agent. Donaldson had been arrested in 'Stormontgate' in 2002, but then not charged. The 'dissident republican' theory that it shows that the whole process has been a British plot is rejected as Donaldson worked for Adams and it reflects the failure of republicanism and its accmodoation to nationalism.

On Palestine there's an odd little column speculating the possibility of Sharon's stroke and political demise triggering an army coup. Pretty unlikely I'd have thought! Roland Rance has a longer and pre-stroke articel about the run-up to Israeli elections .

There are pretty straightforward accounts of the International Peace Conference and Iran Occupation Focus teach-in, legitimating the IOF event as well the STWC conference. There's a postive but measured acount of Morales in Bolivia. There's a postiive account of the Hands off Venezuela conference. Background is provided by a Stuart Piper writing about a new phase in the Bolivarian revolution.


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