Solidarity 269, 9 January 2013

Where is Egypt going?

From a referendum called with only two weeks notice and voted for on 15 and 22 December, Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood President Mohammad Mursi has now forced through the adoption of an Islamist constitution that holds great threats for Egyptian democrats and workers.

Organising against gender violence

Up to 800 people protested outside the Indian High Commission in London to demand justice for Jyoti Singh Pandey, the victim of a brutal gang rape in Delhi.

The protest was organised by Southall Black Sisters. Chants include “women’s tradition: struggle not submission!”, and “don’t blame women for rape!”

Lewisham hospital fight: march on 26 January, build for a work-in!

On 8 January, the Special Administrator released a response to the public “consultation” over his proposals to reorganise south London health services — including closures at Lewisham Hospital.

It acknowledged that it had encountered 96% opposition to the closure of the A&E department... but pledged to carry on with the closure regardless!

The people behind this plan have an undisguised contempt for the people of Lewisham. We cannot let them shut our services.

Civil servants' strike ballot

Public and Commercial Services union (PCS) members in the Department for Work and Pensions will strike on 21 January if a ballot, which closes on 10 January, returns a yes vote.

Reinstate Dave Muritu!

Halesowen College maths lecturer Dave Muritu, also the secretary of the University and College Union at the college, was sacked on 20 December (the last working day before Christmas) following what the union has called a “kangaroo court”.

Sack the agency, not the workers!

Thirty-three Tube workers face unemployment unless a battle to save their jobs is successful.

The workers are employed by the Trainpeople agency and work on London Underground stations, with full LU training and wearing LU uniforms.

The Gramsci enigma

The legacy of the great Italian socialist Antonio Gramsci has been contested in hundreds of books and articles, particularly since the 1970s — so much so that these days university students are more likely to come across him than Karl Marx. But the Gramsci they encounter comes in a confusing variety of interpretations — a proto-Eurocommunist Gramsci, a liberal Gramsci, a revolutionary Gramsci and a radical democrat Gramsci.

Councillors against the cuts

Entire local services could close in many part of the UK, taking hundreds of jobs with them, as councils seek to make further budget cuts in 2013.

The Establishment Blues

Sixto Rodriguez is a Mexican-American singer-songwriter from Detroit.

His life story is incredible. A construction worker who drifted around the city’s working-class districts writing about poverty, alienation, drug abuse, and class struggle, he was discovered by Detroit-based music producers in the late 60s who hailed his songwriting talent as comparable to that of Bob Dylan’s.

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