Saturday, January 14, 2006

Solidarity 3/86 Jan 12th 2006

Well I thought Solidarity (not on the web yet, go to the AWL web-site) would go to town on George Galloway's now humiliating escapades on Big Brother (can I listen to his fine rhetoric again withuot the image of him dressed in a lab-coat pretending to be a pussycat licking milk from Rula Lenska's hands?). Instead the front page is a big 'Why we need a workers' government' with an extremely lengthy and tedious story to back it up. There is a relatively attack on Galloway as 'sad farce' by David Broder, with Respect characterised as standing for the 'politics of celebrity and showbiz'.

The Debate page has two pieces. A Pauline Bradley, convenor of Iraq Union Solidarity (and who refers to her time in the SWP 20 years ago) has the full version of a letter she sent to Morning Star about their coverage of the 'peace' conference on Dec 10th: which she says was one of 'the most boring, stage-managed events' she's been to. She doesn't think much of the politics of the event or of the STWC (although she's glad it exists) and reminds us of the killing of Hadi Saleh. Ms Bradley tells us that the SWP supported Khomeini against the Shah, which I don't quite remember. And she talks about the dangers of 'cutting and running' as in Vietnam, which resulted in carpet bombing Vietnam with Agent Orange. Hmmmmm. So it was a mistake for the anti-war movement in the 60s to calll for the US to get out of Vietnam?

The 'Looking Left' section has Sacha Ismail being acidic on the Molyneux controversy. He thinks there is widespread unease in the SWP about Respect. Martin Thomas writes about the DSP and Australian Socialist Alliance.

Stan Crooke reviews at length a Fabian pamphlet by David Coats, 'Raising Lazarus from the Dead: The Future of Organised Labour'. This seems to have the backing of a range of right-wing trade union leaders. The story is of the fall in membership since the 70s and the very low level of membership among the young (10%). Coats cites changes in the composition of the workforce and their own backward-looking approaches, especially in regards to the Labour government. The 'awkward squad' are the villains and the solution is clearly to accept the triumph of New Labour and develop co-operative relationships with employers.

There's also a long piece by Jean van Heijenoort on the ILP, 'A case study in centrism', from Fourth International in 1942. This is introduced bya claim that the SWP is the modern equivalent of the ILP's centrism, briefly tracing left sectarian and right tacks, in which Marxist principles and politics are secondary to 'building the organisation. The 'Revolutionary Party' is conceived of as a gang, an entity above politics..' A connection is also made between the right-wing Lovestoneites in the US (outright political gangsters') and Cliff's own background is also down as centrist.

Darcy Leigh is critical of Morales in Bolivia, and finally Yasmine Mather of Workers' Left Unity-Iran writes about Iran ('The Islamic Republic against the Iranian working class') makes the point that it's the US policy and war in Iraq that has kept the Shia rulers in power.


Post a Comment

<< Home