Solidarity 232, 1 February 2012

Non à la guerre! Non à la bombe iranienne!

Published on: Thu, 24/05/2012 - 16:08

Un éditorial qui a paru dans le numéro 232 du journal socialiste britannique Solidarity publié par l’Alliance for Workers Liberty.

Les inspecteurs de l'Agence internationale d'énergie atomique (AIEA) sont actuellement en visite en Iran. En novembre 2011, l’agence rapportait que l'Iran avait procédé à des essais «ayant un rapport avec le développement d'un engin nucléaire explosif».

Elle était également préoccupée par l'enrichissement d'uranium de niveau moyen à l'usine Iran Fordo près de Qom dans le nord de l’Iran. La technologie qui permet l'enrichissement de l'uranium de niveau supérieur est

Pensions: make unions commit to action now!

Published on: Wed, 01/02/2012 - 14:21

Unions which have not accepted the Government’s so-called “final” formula for public sector pensions are talking about a further strike on the issue in late March, and more action beyond that.

But activists in those unions, and especially in the officially “left-wing” unions, will have to fight hard:

• to make sure the further strike happens;

• that it is energetically organised, and not just a limp token protest;

• and that “more action” means a genuine ongoing campaign of rolling and selective action, with activity every week, rather than advice to workers to wait after the one-day protest

Partial victory for Palestinian quarry workers

Published on: Wed, 01/02/2012 - 14:18

The struggle of the Salit quarry workers, in the occupied West Bank (Palestine), has concluded in a partial victory, with workers winning a financial settlement but not securing a commitment from contractors taking over work at the quarry to re-employ them.

Workers had been engaged in a prolonged battle, which included a three-month strike in summer 2011, against an exploitative management which used the quarry’s location in an occupied territory to register their business as “foreign”, and thus avoid having to pay the national insurance contributions required of them by Israeli law.


Seize the bankers' loot!

Published on: Wed, 01/02/2012 - 14:13

Bonus payouts in banking and finance totalled £14 billion in 2011.

Most of these bonuses go to a top few. The government-owned Royal Bank of Scotland paid out £1 billion in 2011, when it had made a thumping loss, and plans to pay out £0.5 billion this year. Having persuaded top RBS boss Simon Hester to waive his £1 million bonus, prime minister David Cameron now says he “will not micro-manage” the bonuses paid to other RBS chiefs this year, some of them much higher than Hester's million. He hopes the fuss will have died down by the time other banks announce their bonuses.

If those amounts were

Syria: fighting draws closer to Damascus

Published on: Wed, 01/02/2012 - 14:12

The Arab League has suspended its monitoring operation in Syria.

It has effectively accepted that the initiative — which should have seen political prisoners released, the army move away from urban areas, and a dialogue open with the opposition — has failed. The one-party Syrian state has continued to butcher its own citizens under the noses of the Arab League’s observers.

The Arab League’s failure has pushed more Syrian oppositionists towards the view that they will have to fight with guns in hand to overthrow the narrowly-based state of Bashar Assad. Assad’s rule rests on the Alawite

UCU strike on edge

Published on: Wed, 01/02/2012 - 14:09

The remarkable turnaround which saw the University and College Union (UCU) name 1 March as the day for further action in the Teachers Pension Scheme dispute (TPS, which covers workers in “post-92” universities and FE colleges) was won by the UCU National Executive Committee in the face of stern opposition from UCU General Secretary Sally Hunt.

In response, Hunt is now ascending to the moral high ground via a phoney consultation with branches and individual members. Eamon de Valera only had to look into his own heart to know the will of the Irish people; Hunt only has to invite emails from

Reinstate Alberto Durango!

Published on: Wed, 01/02/2012 - 14:06

The Industrial Workers of the World Cleaners and Allied Grades Branch Secretary Alberto Durango has been sacked from his job at the Heron Tower in London by the contractor Incentive FM Group Ltd.

It is an act of victimisation of a leading union activist well known for campaigning to defend and improve the conditions of workers in the cleaning industry.

In August 2011 IWW secured a significant success on the London Living Wage for cleaners at Heron Tower and in defence of victimised staff. Since the then there have been those seeking revenge against Alberto and the IWW.

In November 2011,

Strikes at Barnet Council, Newsquest, Remploy

Published on: Wed, 01/02/2012 - 14:02

Members of Barnet Unison local government branch will take their fourth one-day strike on Thursday 9 February against mass privatisation at the council.

Please send messages of support to the strikers to
and follow the branch on Twitter: @barnet_unison.

NUJ members in the Newsquest South Essex chapel have started a work-to-rule and will take three days strike action on 13-15 February. They are protesting against a pay freeze and standardised — delayed — pay review date. Newsquest North Essex have also voted for industrial action.

Remploy workers at sites in

HMRC strike pushes tax deadline

Published on: Wed, 01/02/2012 - 13:58

HM Revenue and Customs workers struck on 31 January.

The strike was in opposition to the appointment of private companies (Sitel and Teleperformance) to run call-handling trials in HMRC contact centres in Cumbria and Bathgate (Scotland).

The trials are due to begin in February, and the Public and Commercial Services union (PCS) warns that they could open to door to further privatisation within HMRC.

The strike was timed to coincide with the deadline for self-assessment tax returns, the busiest day in HMRC’s calendar, and has led to an effective two-day extension of the deadline by HMRC bosses

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