Solidarity 443, 30 June 2017

Hillsborough: police to be prosecuted at last

Published on: Mon, 03/07/2017 - 13:57

Rosalind Robson

Last year, an inquest jury found that David Duckenfield was guilty of “manslaughter by gross negligence” Duckenfield was the police officer in charge of policing the fateful football match at Hillsborough, the ground of Sheffield Wednesday, in 1989. 96 people were crushed to death, and 400 others injured in an overcrowded pen.

Now the Crown Prosecution Service has decided to charge Duckenfield and five other people with criminal offences. The families and friends of those who were killed will finally get to hold at least some in the establishment to account — charges have been brought against

Industrial news in brief

Published on: Mon, 03/07/2017 - 13:51

Ollie Moore and Gemma Short

As Solidarity goes to press, the annual general meeting of the National Union of Rail, Maritime, and Transport workers (RMT) is debating a series of motions at its annual general meeting on its relationship with the Labour Party. The RMT, whose predecessor union helped found Labour, effectively had its affiliation cancelled by the New Labour leadership in 2004, after the RMT leadership refused to censure Scottish branches which wanted to back candidates of the Scottish Socialist Party, then an active and growing force.

Since then, RMT has backed a number of electoral efforts against Labour,

Labour responds to election result

Published on: Mon, 03/07/2017 - 13:30

Keith Road

Labour’s election result has been rightly celebrated by the Labour left. It was also cautiously welcomed by the Labour right. So what will now be the political mood inside Labour?

Although there are still vocal opponents of Corbyn, like Chris Leslie and Neil Coyle, the vast majority of the 172 MPs who no-confidenced Corbyn 12 months ago have stayed quiet. Some have even admitted they were wrong. The short-lived effort to get back into the Shadow Cabinet from these people did not really come to fruition. Only defeated Corbyn challenger Owen Smith was handed a post – as Shadow Northern Ireland


Published on: Mon, 03/07/2017 - 12:58

Janine Booth

Bring help
Bring fire engines
Bring water
Bring air
Bring stretchers
Bring ambulances
Bring us round from sleep and out to safety

Bring food
Bring clothes
Bring blankets
Bring camp beds
Bring phone chargers so we can find our friends and family
And tell them that we made it

Bring shoulders to cry on
Bring arms to embrace
Bring ears to listen
Bring hands to hold
Bring the strength to go on

Bring news
Bring hope
Bring solidarity
Bring community
Bring what you can
Bring yourself

Bring questions
Demand answers
Bring the letters written and the warnings given
And bring the inadequate replies


A political journey that doesn’t end

Published on: Mon, 03/07/2017 - 12:52

Joe Booth

I have been a person of cause and rebellion for a long time. As an autistic young man growing up under capitalism, alienation has always been something I feel strongly. My parents are trade unionists and far-left socialists, and they brought me to the ideas of anti-oppression and solidarity.

My mum did not know she was also autistic until the age of 45. Before then it was a struggle for my family and everyone around me — including at school — to grasp what was actually stressing me and how to fully help me. The journey of growing up therefore brought me to rebellion, emancipation and

Guevara is not our hero

Published on: Mon, 03/07/2017 - 12:44

Pablo Velasco

Che Guevara is lionised as a revolutionary icon by wide sections of the global left. Even those claiming some Trotskyist heritage, from the various “Fourth Internationals” to the British SWP, publish mostly uncritical appreciations of the individual and his politics. Yet Guevara was never a working class socialist nor even a revolutionary democrat. He helped overthrow the hated dictator Batista in Cuba, but only to replace it with a Stalinist regime.

Clearing away false messiahs and Stalinist blind alleys is a central task if the Marxist left is to revive. Samuel Farber is the most

From dictatorship to liberal capitalism

Published on: Mon, 03/07/2017 - 12:39

A bourgeois republic, led by Mustafa Kemal, was established in Turkey in 1923, and this was an historical turning point pertaining to the development of capitalism in Turkey. However the Turkish bourgeoisie did not totally abolish the old despotic, Asiatic state traditions of the Ottoman Empire.

The social and political reforms necessary for modern capitalism to develop in Turkey were carried out from above, with Bismarckian methods, and this was the pattern until the 1960s. The Communist Party of Turkey (TKP) was founded in 1920 as a section of the Comintern, under the direct influence of

Why we need more Bolsheviks today

Published on: Mon, 03/07/2017 - 12:31

Martin Thomas

Few except the most conservative deny the emancipatory grandeur of mass action in the October 1917 Russian revolution. Common, however, is the claim that there was too much “party” in the revolution — the Bolsheviks were too organised, too ruthless, too pushy, and that led to Stalinism. This article seeks to refute that claim.

October 1917 is often described as a “Bolshevik coup”, suggesting that the Bolsheviks took advantage of momentary excitement and disorder to seize an existing machine of power. In fact, in the weeks after 25 October 1917, the Bolshevik (and then Bolshevik/ Left SR

Claw back the wealth!

Published on: Mon, 03/07/2017 - 12:01


Under pressure to do a deal with Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party, the Tories have found £1 billion extra for public services in Northern Ireland, the equivalent pro rata to £29 billion in England. They have also sneaked through a huge pay rise for the Queen, from £43 million in 2016 to £82 million in 2019. On 28 June they voted down Labour’s proposal to lift the public sector pay limit.
More pressure — strikes, demonstrations, rallies — can make them budge on that, too.

Many Tory MPs openly call for the limit to be raised, and, before reaffirming that the limit “has not changed”,

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