Saturday, July 29, 2006

Solidarity Vol 3, 96 July 13th 2006

Nice people from the AWL turn up at a demo against Israel's wars in the Lebanon and Gaza: brave, I thought, in view of the inclination of marchers to chant: 'Palestine shall be free, from the river to the sea'. Their paper is a bit old and the 'Tax the Rich' headline isn't that inviting. Ah, the vicissitudes of fortnightly publication.

Their coverage of international issues: Cathy Nugent on 'The return of the Taliban', which calls for solidarity work with democratic and leftist forces in Afghanistan.
Editorial: 'Stop the assault on Gaza'
Martin Thomas reports on 'Iraqi oil workers plan strike aganist sectarian war', taken from a web statement by the Iraq Freedom Congress (a Worker-Communist Party of Iraq front?) which will be aimed against both the occupation and sectarian gangs; but there is clearly much confusino as to what exactly it is about. Thomas goes on to give an account of the continuing turmoil in Iraqi politics, in which, he claims, 'The simmering Shia-Sunni civil war is gradually coming to the boil'. There is an interesting excerpt from an al-Jazeera interview with Nir Rosen (who has porvided some of the most interesting reportage from inside Iraq), making the point that the American occupation is a daily crime.

Sean Matgamna reviews The Wind That Shakes the Barley - best Loach film since Kes he says - and he gives a useful account of the historical background and highlights some problems: some complexities are ignored, but is on weaker ground in criticising the film for not saying enough about the class differences when that is ome of the main points in the film - remember the courtroom sequence. I do agree with Matgamna that the treatment of the civil war is weaker.

There's an interview with somone from the Scottish Socialist Youth/SSP-United Left about the current debacle posed (convincingly I think) as 'Personality cult or class-struggle party'. There's also a couple of accounts of the split in Workers Power/League for the Fifth International. And a kind word about Marxism 2006. The AWL's Ideas for Freedom gets praised.

I missed the Children's BBC programme That Summer Day, but remember some criticsm of for being too PC, but am now astounded to discover it was written by AWL member Clive Bradley. Tom Unterreiner reviews Linda Grant's The People on the Street and finds a resource against the 'demonisation' of Israel and the need to accept the right of the Israeli state to exist. Steve Cohen reviews Irving Howe's A Margin of Hope, emphasising both Howe's critique of sects and what Cohen takes to be the way ideas can be seen as a precursor for the Euston Manifesto.

Finally, David Broder provides a very interesting and detailed account of the workers factory occupation movement in Argentina following a visit to the famous Zanon factory (now FaSinPat - 'factory without bosses').


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