Monday, 30 June 2014

Murdered by Terrorists

The sad news tonight that the bodies of the three kidnapped teenagers in Israel have now been found. It seems they were simply executed and not held anywhere.

Our hearts and minds are with the parents of these children tonight.

photo: Bring Back Our Boys.

Then the criminals responsible must be brought to justice.

Sunday, 29 June 2014

Islamists war on children continues as hate preacher seeks asylum

The kidnapping of over two hundred Christian school girls by the Islamist extremists known as Boko Haram and threatening to sell them into slavery, shocked ordinary people across the world.

These so called "men of god" want to take northern Nigeria back to the stone age by banning education, killing Christians and enslaving women.

In Israel three teenagers were kidnapped by the Hamas terrorists.

An organisation that hides behind the pretence of being on the side of the Palestinians when its real agenda (which includes a genocidal policy towards Jews) is also to set up a backwards "Islamic" state.

Meanwhile in Iraq, the blood crazed ISIS group has kidnapped 140 boys who had been sitting their exams. The Times reported on Friday that:

All but four of the boys, aged between 14 and 16, are still in captivity and being subjected to instruction in Islamic law, followed by hours of propaganda.

Mohammed one of four boys who fled said "we were all so scared". On the first day of their kidnapping, the militants told the boys "if you try to escape we will cut your head off".

They were issued with blankets and slept 17 to a room. Prayers began at dawn. After Sharia lessons, the fighters would show them videos of killings and suicide bombings, Mohammed said.

These are school children., being turned into cannon fodder by the Islamist terrorists.

Men of "God"? A death cult is all these Islamists represent. A threat to Muslims let alone the rest of us. They need to be stopped.

Around 500 of these men are from the UK.

The hate preachers have been active in recruiting vulnerable youths in Muslim communities in this country. One of them Omar Bakri fled the UK back in 2005 and now seeks to return.

The Huffington Post reports:

Extremist preacher Omar Bakri Mohammad will not be allowed back into Britain, the Government has insisted amid reports he intends to claim asylum in the UK.

The radical Islamic cleric faces the death sentence for running a terror cell in Lebanon and claims he has been tortured, according to reports.

Family members have said they are launching an urgent appeal to allow him back into Britain under asylum laws but the Home Office has ruled out a return.

Government spokesmen have been quite firm in rejecting any such application.

I'll be blunter. 

Bakri can simply fuck off.

Saturday, 28 June 2014

Time to stand up against the boycott campaigners!

Photo: I'm off to Ecostream shortly to ask Glenn, Ann, Parrot-Face, Russell, Cobham and the rest of the BDS the following question;  Who is that you represent??   If you can join us please try and show YOUR support for Israel, your disgust of BDS, respect for the military (today is 'Armed Forces Day' in the UK) and, most importantly, #BringBackOurBoys!  
If you can't make it, videos, pictures and all the fun here from about 5 pm (GMT)

For the last couple of years the Eco-Stream shop in Brighton has been targeted by the local branch of the so-called Palestine Solidarity Campaign. That's the one with the dubious patronage of Tony Greenstein a rather obsessive individual that campaigns against Israel, the only democracy in the Middle East.

For once the "comrades" don't get their own way and face regular and sustained opposition from the Sussex Friends of Israel group.

Photo: ...and this is how the Brighton BDS master plan worked out.....
Photo: Sussex Friends of Israel

The "comrades" should take note of the  Gatestone Institute report:

At university campuses in the US, Canada, Australia and Europe, they are hailed as heroes campaigning for Palestinian rights. But in Ramallah, ironically, activists belonging to the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions [BDS] movement are seen by the Palestinian Authority [PA] as trouble-makers and law-breakers.

For some PA officials, BDS is a movement that acts against the true interests of the Palestinians. They say that the actions of those promoting BDS make the Palestinians appear as if they are not interested in peace and coexistence with Israel. BDS activists in Ramallah have succeeded in preventing several planned meetings between Israelis and Palestinians in Ramallah and east Jerusalem.

The Palestinian Authority is also worried that BDS is harming the Palestinians' relations with other countries. The most recent example of BDS efforts to damage Palestinians' relations with friendly countries occurred a few weeks ago, when the "anti-normalization" activists tried to disrupt a performance by an Indian dance troupe in Ramallah.

A PA official in Ramallah explained that BDS and its followers make the Palestinians appear as if they are all radicals who are only interested in boycotting and delegitimizing Israel. 

"This goes against the PLO's official policy, which is to seek a peace agreement with Israel based on the two-state solution," he said.

In the first case of its kind, four prominent BDS activists this week went on trial before a Palestinian Authority court for "provoking riots and breach of public tranquility."

The four men, Zeid Shuaibi, Abdel Jawad Hamayel, Fadi Quran and Fajr Harb, were detained by PA security forces after protesting against the performance of an Indian dance troupe.

Time to stand with Israelis and Palestinians for a peaceful two state solution!

Thursday, 26 June 2014

Another "Bolivarian" farce!

You can always tell the summer is almost upon us by the stories that start appearing in the press. The Metro reports:

Scratch-and-sniff cards loaded with the scent of cannabis are being handed out by police to help residents identify dope farms in their area.

Today’s drive, the second phase of a campaign launched last year, aims to educate the public about how growing plants smell so they can alert police.

This news certainly brought a smile to my face at the thought of students and hippies making good use of these items as "roaches" as they roll around the floor stoned and laughing! 

This brings us more amusing news of the antics of the "Bolivarian" socialists, named after some Venezuelan socialist called Simon Bolivar. He was an inspiration (if you can call it that) to the late and unlamented President of Venezuela, he was the one who took over the TV stations for his personal rants plus a song or two for the masses all in the name of...socialism.

Chavez also banned The Simpsons as being "bad for family values" (go figure) and was too "anti-authority", aah, that's sound more like the comrades fears that we have come to love. Not.

Still, Chavez is dead, though his (cough) heir, Nicolas Maduro says he still keeps in touch with the people:

Nicolas Maduro, the president of Venezuela, claims that his predecessor, Hugo Chavez, has appeared on the wall of an underground construction site.

"My hair stands on end just telling you about it," Maduro told Venezuelans on Wednesday, while holding up the photo. "Who is that face? That gaze is the gaze of the fatherland that is everywhere around us, including in inexplicable phenomena."

Construction workers were digging a new subway line in Caracas in the middle of the night when they came across the eerie apparition. Since his death in March, Chavez has taken on a mystical role within the mythology of the country's ruling socialist party. Maduro claims he has seen the spirit of his predecessor multiple times, including in the shape of a bird.

That was a while ago, but madness seems to be compulsory for the followers of Bolivar as The Times (no link £) reports today:

President Morales of Bolivia has made a career from theatrical mistrust of the established order..

His latest wheeze is to design a clock that goes backwards! In a move by the comrades to "set itself apart from the mainstream" visitors to La Paz:

...will be doing double-takes when they look at the clock on the front of the Congress building: its hands move anti-clockwise and the numbers are set in reverse.

How did the working class react?

Locals in La Paz said that most people who saw the anti-clockwise clock failed to grasp its revolutionary potential and simply thought it was broken.

That's socialism for you.

Back to the drawing board, eh comrades!

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Bring Back Our Boys and Girls

With the world focused on the tragic events unfolding in the civil war in Iraq it seems two vital campaigns in the war against terrorism have been sidelined.

Islamist terrorists have also been waging their violent hatred on Children.

On April 15th, 230 School girls were kidnapped from the Chibok Government Secondary School by Boko Haram Terrorists in Nigeria. Most are still missing.

UK Demonstration and Rally!

Bedford, UK Rally
28 June at 13:00 in UTC+01
Bedford, Bedfordshire, United Kingdom

On 12th JuneThree schoolboys were kidnapped by the Hamas terrorists in Israel. All 3 remain missing

Families of Eyal, Gilad and Naftali at the Knesset. Stand with them!
(Photo: Arsen Ostrovsky)

Israel Demo & Rally: 

Sunday 29th June 19:30 Tel Aviv (Details here)

Bring Back Our GirlsBring Back Our Boys

Facebook Campaign: here                                           Facebook Campaign: here

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

The growing threat of religious intolerance around the world

I was heartened to see in this mornings papers that Meriam Ibrahim had been released. No sooner had I got home and the BBC was reporting:

A Sudanese woman freed from death row on Monday has been detained with her family at Khartoum airport, sources have told the BBC.

Meriam Ibrahim was sentenced in May to hang for renouncing Islam, sparking widespread outrage at home and abroad.

About 40 security agents detained Mrs Ibrahim - along with her husband, Daniel Wani and two children - at the airport, the sources said.

A top Sudanese official has told the BBC she would be freed "soon".

The arrest may have something to do with the bizarre internal politics of the Islamic state of Sudan. It certainly has nothing to do with justice which seems to be so sadly lacking in the world of Islam. 

Meanwhile over at Tendance Coatsey we are told that the ISIS Islamists are now demanding "protection money" gangster style:

In Mosul ISIS has imposed on Christians the discriminatory status of “dhimmi“, forcing them to pay a tax (the jizyah) as a guarantee of protection.

Sad news for the last Christians of Mosul. The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (EIIL) – Daech according acronym in Arabic, – has ordered them to pay the jizyah,a special tax which giving them the status of second-class citizens.....

This obligation to pay the jizya for Christian dhimmi - “protected” or a non-Muslim citizens in Muslim state – is compulsory.

It is also open to any non-Muslim citizen, provided they belong to a revealed religion (Judaism, Zoroastrianism, etc..). It is accompanied by other discriminatory conditions, restricted freedom of worship, and the loss of certain rights, in exchange for a guarantee of security for their persons and property.
The word "Apartheid" comes to mind (BDS supporters please note), just as it does over the position of women in Saudi Arabia where they are not even allowed to drive a car. Not sure where it says that in the Koran,cars hadn't even been invented but some wacky old bunch of clerics managed to make some nonsense up....
Its not just Islamists either. The International Buisiness Times reports:
Russian Orthodox Christians have called on Moscow authorities to ban a performance by controversial rock singer Marilyn Manson.

Religious group God's Will argues that Manson's performances contravene Russian anti-blasphemy laws.

Group spokesman Dmitry Tsorionov told RIA Novosti that believers condemned the "blasphemy and profanity of his [Manson's] song lyrics but mostly his behaviour during performances".

"The burning and destruction of the Bible is an integral part of his show," said Tsorionov. "For example, the culmination of his concert in St Petersburg was the destruction of a Bible in front of an enthusiastic crowd that he had brought to an absolutely inadequate state."

The organisation also said Manson's performances were "full of elements insulting to the feelings of believers" and promoted "religious hatred, cruelty, murder, suicide, sexual perversion and Satanism among young people, including minors".

Methinks the only people promoting any "hatred" are the religious fundamentalist types who cannot tolerate anybody who dares to be different and not conform to their superstitious clap trap.
Believe what you want, but you have no right to tell the rest of us how to live and think!
Human Rights always come before Religious Rights.
Here's a song guaranteed to offend someone somewhere for some reason. 

Monday, 23 June 2014

Polish Neo-Nazi attack in Tottenham

The rise of the far-right across Europe has been of some concern to the Jewish community, but until now the main source of tension in the UK has been with extremist Islamists.

Until now.

The BBC reports:

A man has been charged with committing racial and religiously aggravated common assault at a music event.

A man's kippah - Jewish skull cap - was pushed from his head during Music Now at Markfield Recreation Ground in Tottenham, north London.

The Met said a group of about 20 people, "predominantly male and from the Eastern European community" disrupted the event on Saturday.

Officers said during the disorder fireworks were thrown.

Jaroslaw Kwidzinski, 22, from Ashtead in Surrey, was released on bail until 14 July when he is due to appear at Highbury Corner Magistrates' Court.

The North London Anti-Fascists website continues:

...a small, extreme nationalist Polish group, Zjednoczeni Emigranci (literally translated as United Immigrants, refered to in this post as Z.E.) had also planned an event nearby. Taking the peaceful community event by surprise, Z.E. launched an unprovoked attack, hurling verbal abuse at locals, intimidating the children and families that were present, before turning to physical violence. Footage from the community event shows Z.E. launching rocks and flares at the crowd. In this shocking turn of events, one local was stabbed and at least one fascist was arrested. 

Z.E. are a relatively small but hardcore group, their social media pages show racist and neo-nazi imagery, and they have close ties to football hooliganism in Poland.

Frankly the idea that these nationalists are pursuing their nationalism in a country nowhere near their own is the height of absurdity.

This is one group of foreigners we could all unite in calling for the deportation of!

Polish Nazi's not welcome here!

Sunday, 22 June 2014

An assembly to nowhere

The far-left are bemoaning the fact that the demonstration organised by the so-called "Peoples Assembly failed to attract much, if any attention in the media. According to the organisers about 50,000 people turned up, though this estimate appears to have originated from an off the cuff comment by one of their speakers at the end rally.

According to even some supporters of the demonstration the number was far fewer. Figures being touted around on Face Book suggest under half that number may be nearer the true figure. By the time Socialist Worker goes to print the figure will probably have gone up as is their usual practise.

The turnout does however suggest that the message that the far-left is putting out is not motivating those they seek to influence and I have to say trying to build a demonstration like this in the middle of the World Cup was doomed to failure.

The workers have their modern "opiate", not religion but football.

I'm not even a fan of the game but recognise the importance of football to the majority of my fellow trade unionists. The left forget that most workers are not ideologically inclined towards the doctrinal Marxists that still manage to dominate a large(ish) section of the Labour and Trade Union Movement.

This demo was supposed to be part of the campaign to build a mini general strike over pay on July 10th. As much as people want a pay increase there is seemingly little real desire amongst the average member to lose what little money they have in a strike campaign that is likely not achieve anything.

But for the "comrades" the struggle, the sacrifice is all. Reality has no place in their myopic world.

Not all of them make the sacrifices they call on us the ordinary members to make.

Take Chris Baugh Socialist Party member and Assistant General Secretary of PCS. He is part of a group that believes trade union officials should only receive the "average workers wage".  Yet PCS accounts show no returns to the unions funds from "Comrade" Baugh.

Now personally I think the policy is nonsense and people should be paid the going rate for the job.

But all the same "comrade"....

Its the last week of the ballot in PCS and other unions are consulting their members about July 10th.

My only prediction, particularly for PCS is that the abstentions will win. Its' really only a question of how many don't vote.

Saturday, 21 June 2014

Political dinosaur spotted in Peckham

A large number of far-left political groups have emerged and disappeared over the years, some of which are not well known but still active. One of these was spotted protesting outside Peckham Job Centre in a quite sad video found on one of the Left Unity branch Face Book pages. The rare and endangered species known as the Revolutionary Communist Group, one of whom was fanning herself with a revolutionary weapon known as a tambourine whilst selling their turgid rag Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism!

The RCG are a small group believed to have a membership around 100 or so that originated as an opposition inside the International Socialists, forerunner of the Socialist Workers Party. The group led by guru David Yaffe has long been seen as an ex-Trotskyist organisation that has become "more Stalinist than the Stalinists", an expression coined by the now defunct Permanent Revolution group.

Slavishly devoted to the workers paradise known as Cuba, about the only act they are actually remembered for was their marathon picket of the South African embassy which lasted for years if I recall correctly, so long it didn't actually even attract any attention by the end of its's run.

Like most groups of this type the RCG concentrates its limited resources on anti-imperialism on the usual campaigns; Palestine, Venezuela and has an unusual take on Tiananmen Square as they write:

4 June 2014 marked the 25th anniversary of the ending of the Tiananmen Square protests in Beijing, China. Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! located the events in the context of China’s trajectory along the capitalist road and away from socialism. They signalled a crisis for the working class and the construction of socialism in China. We warned then that, ‘There is a very great danger that counter-revolution will flourish both within and without the CPC [Communist party of China] if past policies are continued.’ The reversal towards capitalism has continued in China.

Charming stuff indeed.

The other notable contribution that the RCG has given to the left was that it gave birth to the infamous Revolutionary Communist Party led by Frank Furedi in yet another of the inevitable doctrinal splits that regularly occur on the Marxist left. The RCP became larger than its parent organisation to the point where it held an annual bash Preparing for Power that tried to compete with the SWP for hegemony on the far-left.

Eventually they actually disbanded at a special conference citing the impossibility of revolution and walked away from socialism. These days a large group of former RCP members write and organise around the rather contrarian website Spiked!

The RCG still blunders on though, attaching itself to whatever campaign it can latch on to.

Should give up the bloody tambourine though....

Friday, 20 June 2014

Musical Interlude: Player

With everybody seemingly distracted by the World Cup and for some reason being a bit tired over the last couple of days I decided to take a quick break from the daily blog.

Normal service will resume tomorrow but in the meantime here is a very pleasant piece of music which went to number one in 1977.

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

The weird worlds of Trotskyism

QIP Logo

There are times I wonder what planet some of the comrades on the far-left live on. Take this comment from the latest issue of the (rather tedious) newspaper, The Socialist. Writing about their annual bash Socialism 2014 they enthusiastically tell us that:

One of the most anticipated speakers will be Seattle Socialist councillor, Kshama Sawant. Kshama is a member of Socialist Alternative, co-thinkers of the Socialist Party in the US. Her election with nearly 100,000 votes has sent shock waves across the world.

Didn't notice? Not even those of you at the back. I am surprised. Rocked the world it did. Not.

The election of one Socialist Party councillor in the USA does not shake the world any more than the election of one TUSC councillor did in the UK. Frankly nobody noticed the outcome of the result in Southampton or wherever because even the candidate himself did not actually stand as a TUSC candidate, but appeared on the ballot paper as an independent.

More amusing (if you can call it that) was over at the Pabloite website Tendance Coatsey where we are taken down memory lane with an article about Juan Posadas, Dolphins and UFOs.

Writing about some programme on BBC 4 about a "girl who talks to dolphins", the ever entertaining Andrew Coates comments:

Trotskyism was also at the forefront of this great leap forward in interspecies communication.

Juan R Posadas, the Argentinian Trotskyist is best known for his pioneering theories on UFOs and the probable existence of higher, communist, civilisations on other planets. He rightly observed that, “These beings from other planets come to observe life down here and laugh at humans, we who fight each other over who has the most cannons, cars and wealth.”

More to the point Posadas himself appealed for solidarity from UFOs with the class struggle:

We must appeal to the beings on other planets, when they come here, to intervene and collaborate with Earth’s inhabitants in suppressing poverty. We must make this call to them. It is possible to make ourselves understood to them. We must not, of course, expect that they will understand immediately. But we must make appeals to them, if we believe that they can, indeed, exist. If we have any possibility of making contact with them, we must not fall into individual scientific curiosity, out of some desire to see where they come from and to visit other planets.

We must unite with them, they who seem more powerful than human beings, such that they will come and help us resolve Earth’s problems. Then we can concern ourselves with going to see what other planets are like, how life and matter are organised, and everything regarding nature. But most important is first to resolve the problems of humanity on Earth. We do not have a fantasist or idealist position with regard to flying saucers. As we accept that they exist, we want to use all means at hand, including those from outside of this planet. When we seriously reach a scientific discovery, we must try to use it to the benefit of humanity.

Read the full article here, but entirely at your own risk.

It wasn't the only madness that this man espoused.  The Fortean Times reminds us Posadas was also famous for this:

“Nuclear war [equals] revolutionary war. It will damage humanity but it will not – it cannot – destroy the level of consciousness reached by it… Humanity will pass quickly through a nuclear war into a new human society – Socialism.” 7 Posadas predicted that atomic war was “the supreme opportunity for the forces of the world revolution”, which would come swiftly. “After the destruction commences, the masses are going to emerge in all countries – in a short time, in a few hours.”.......

As time wore on, Posadist nuclear war doctrine became more impatient, demanding of the Soviets and Chinese that they hurry up and annihilate capitalism with a pre-emptive first strike right now. “Preventative war” was a doctrine briefly discussed in the Soviet Union in the 1970s, but never with such urgent enthusiasm as by Posadas. China “should launch the war now… they call upon the masses of the world to take power now”, he declared in the European Marxist Review of 1968. He saw Soviet preparation for war as being “accompanied for support for the revolution. Thus, every button they press is part of the progress of history.”

Posadas also held the delusional view that his nuclear war doctrine had been adopted by China, declaring that: “If this intervention by fraternal solidarity unleashed war from the side of imperialism, imperialism will perish… these are our conclusions, which the Chinese also draw.” 10 By 1970, Posadists believed of China’s nuclear war strategy that “Until six months ago, the Chinese totally ignored this question. Today, they put this conclusion at the centre of their analysis, taking complete phrases from the articles of Posadas.”

Although Posadas is no longer with us, there remain some of his disciples around. (see here)

In comparison most other Trotskyist groups are relatively sane

But not that much.

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Press TV says ISIS is a Zionist plot

The continuing crisis in Iraq has attracted a lot of comment in the media and amongst bloggers. there is no easy answer to the situation and The Times carries a specular picture of volunteers massing outside Baghdad to defend their city against the terrorists of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). The paper (no link £) also reports that Iran has what it describes as Tehrans truly evil general to bolster the faltering Shia Government in the Iraqi capital:

Major General Qassem Sulemani, the commander of Iran's al-Quds force, a formation in the Revolutionary Guards, is also a formidable enemy of the West and is believed to have been the architect of numerous attacks on British and American personnel throughout the region....

Western diplomats and military commanders regard General Sulemani as one of the most dangerous proponents of Iranian military struggle abroad, will find his presence a bitter irony as they test the limits of how far their enemy's enemy is their friend - the political dynamic that is driving the the sudden detente between Washington and Tehran.

Their worries will be confirmed with this bizarre report from Press TV, the Iranian Government propaganda channel:

The so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) is a plot by the Israeli regime to drive away revolutionary forces from Israeli borders and provide a safe haven for the Zionists, a high-ranking Iranian military commander says.

The rest of this rant can be read at the link below which also includes a short excerpt from their news bulletin outlining the same nonsense:

Now that's a conspiracy theory and then some!

This channel used to employ such notables as Ken Livingstone and George Galloway.

What were they thinking.....

Monday, 16 June 2014

The barbarians are at the gates

Over recent days we have seen an increase in Islamist terrorism and violence across the Middle East and Africa. The continuing advance of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria has been the main focus of media attention as the organisation swept across central Iraq with masked men turning the country into yet another killing zone.

In Kenya the Islamist Al-Shabab have carried out yet another atrocity in Mpeketoni, in Kenya where according to the BBC:

"There were around 50 attackers, heavily armed in three vehicles, and they were flying the Shabab flag. They were shouting in Somali and shouting 'Allahu Akbar' [God is Great]."

At least 48 people killed in the name of this "God".

ISIS have been busy in their brutality.  Aljazeera reports:

Sunni rebels in Iraq have posted pictures on Twitter apparently showing their fighters killing captured Shia soldiers.

A Twitter account aligned with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), said the pictures show scores of captured Iraqi soldiers being killed.

The images, released at the weekend, show masked fighters loading the captives on trucks before forcing them to lie face-down in a shallow ditch with their arms tied behind their backs. The final pictures show bodies soaked in blood after being shot.

A caption on one of the pictures suggested that the victims - believed to be security personnel - were punished for fighting Sunnis. The Twitter account where the pictures were posted was suspended hours later.

More people killed in the name of this "God".

Meanwhile in Afghanistan photographs have emerged of men who have had their fingers off. Their crime? They dared to use their democratic right to vote.

In Israel three teenagers have been kidnapped by Islamists (see post below) in the continuing war of the Islamists against innocents as their recent abduction of hundreds of girls in Nigeria illustrated. 

The Independent reported:

In a chilling message, the leader of the Islamist militant group Boko Haram has claimed responsibility for the abduction of nearly 300 schoolgirls in the north of Nigeria last month, and said that he would sell them into slavery.

“I abducted your girls,” Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau said in the one-hour video released on Monday. “By Allah, I will sell them in the marketplace,” he continued, adding that the girls were being held as “slaves”.

Children sold into slavery for this "God".

And lest you forget :

27-year-old Meriam Yehya Ibrahim was eight months pregnant when she appeared before a court in Khartoum, Sudan’s capital city, on 15 May on charges of 'apostasy' and 'adultery'. When she refused to renounce her Christian faith, the judges sentenced Meriam to death by hanging. Meriam has also been sentenced to 100 lashes for being married to a Christian man.

Meriam has committed no crime. She is a prisoner of conscience and should be released immediately.

How many more deaths does this "God" and his followers demand?

The time has come to take a stand against these Islamists whether they carry guns or take their falsehoods into our classrooms or universities.

The left, the liberal establishment and the government must learn appeasement is not the answer.


Sunday, 15 June 2014

Bring back our boys!

Last week on Thursday night 12 June, 3 Teenagers were on their way home from school.
Before they got home they were kidnapped by a terrorist organisation and have been missing since.

Support their safe return!


William Hague condemns abduction of Israeli youths and expresses concern at violence on the ground.

Speaking after hearing of the abduction of three Israeli youths in the West Bank on 12 June, the Foreign Secretary William Hague said:

I strongly condemn the abduction of three Israeli youths in the West Bank. My thoughts are with their families and I hope for their safe return home soon. I appeal to those who are able to bring about their release to take urgent action to do so.

I am deeply concerned by the escalation in violence on the ground. For the sake of both Israelis and Palestinians, I hope further escalation can be avoided. The rockets fired indiscriminately from Gaza into Israel must stop; it is tragic that the Israeli airstrikes in response led to civilian injuries and the death of a child. I call on all parties to respect in full the November 2012 ceasefire.


John Kerry: U.S. Condemns Kidnapping of Three Israeli Teenagers:

The United States strongly condemns the kidnapping of three Israeli teenagers and calls for their immediate release. Our thoughts and prayers are with their families. We hope for their quick and safe return home. We continue to offer our full support for Israel in its search for the missing teens, and we have encouraged full cooperation between the Israeli and Palestinian security services. We understand that cooperation is ongoing.

We are still seeking details on the parties responsible for this despicable terrorist act, although many indications point to Hamas’ involvement. As we gather this information, we reiterate our position that Hamas is a terrorist organization known for its attacks on innocent civilians and which has used kidnapping in the past.

Bring back our boys


Sectariana on a Sunday

In the "dark days" before the advent of the Internet if you wanted to read the publications of the left a trip to either a left wing book shop (like Colletts in Charing Cross road) or turn up on some demo or picket was the only way to get copies of these fine items.

There used to be a fine variety of newspapers "thoeretical" journals and the like including Socialist Worker and The Militant, but these were boring and tedious publications. Much more fun reading was to be found in Red Weekly/Socialist Challenge (International Marxist Group), Socialist Press (Workers Socialist League) Workers Press/News Line (Workers Revolutionary Party) and the utterly hysterical Spartacist (Spartacist League)

Socialist Worker is about the only left publication still around from my misspent youth, the rest have all disappeared or as in the case of Militant morphed into a smaller boring paper known as The Socialist.

Of course you could take out a subscription, but as both myself and others soon found out, this usually meant unwanted visitors knocking at yer door wanting to recruit you or in the case of the Workers Revolutionary Party drain you of what little money was in your pocket. For the cause of course comrade......

Now of course all these publications can be found on-line at the click of a button or two.

One such publication that I was aware of but do not actually recall reading until now was The Chartist, a "tendency" if I recall correctly produce the group around Graham Bash that became Labour Briefing in the eighties. My attention was drawn to this publication as the result of it having an AGM reported on Tendance Coatsey. I was quite amused by Coatsey's comments on the Scottish Referendum debate that:

From the audience concern was expressed at moves to separate people on national grounds. It was also pointed out by another Chartist supporter that the mover of the resolution’s own party, Left Unity, did not endorse these views, that Chartist is not a directly campaigning group with a ‘line’ and that it was said that Alex Salmond was so vain that he drank his own bath water. We might guess who made the latter comments.

Meanwhile the main source of gossip and (mis)information (depending on your point of view) is  of course the Weekly Worker which treats us to an inside report on the goings on of the newly founded Left Unity party. Yassamine Mather introduces readers to the latest problem of the LUs National Council:

According to the constitution passed in November 2013, this council should meet at least four times a year to lead and manage the organisational and financial affairs of the party between national conferences. The same constitution stipulates that this council should consist of 66 elected members: 50 regional representatives, the four nationally elected principal speakers and 15 nationally elected council members, the six elected office-holders, and one representative from each of the following sections: youth/students, LGBT, Black and Minority Ethnic, disabled members and women.

It is difficult to imagine how the comrades who drafted the constitution expected a committee of 66 members to lead and manage organisational and financial affairs once every three months, and inevitably a number of key decisions have to be made by sub-committees. There will also be an executive committee, made up of the office-holders and 10 regional representatives, which will be responsible for taking decisions in the three months between NC meetings......

We are then told that:

The meeting started with some confusion about standing orders. Can the meeting accept emergency motions? How many signatures are necessary for such motions? It was decided to take only those motions that were already on the agenda, but standing orders would be drawn up for future NC meetings.

Oh well the revolution can wait until the standing orders are sorted out. 

Or should that be when the Pub Closes........

Nothing changes does it?

Except for one thing. Back in the day people with really strange ideas were limited to scribbling in green ink up in their bedrooms until mum called them down for tea.

Now a lot of these people have blogs.

But that's another story.....

Saturday, 14 June 2014


Love it, hate it, one just can't get away from it at the moment so as they's something completely different!!!!

Friday, 13 June 2014

Musical Interlude: In The Moment

Whilst everyone else is seemingly distracted by the football, I have been You Tubing with one of my favourite bands In The Moment with the stunning Maria Brink as lead singer.

Both these videos reminded me of of Lady GaGa, but this is METAL!!!


Official Website:


Thursday, 12 June 2014

Time to stand up against extremism

"Since the moment protests erupted over Salman Rushdie's Satanic Verses, Britain's authorities have been caught off guard, It was a Conservative home secretary (Michael Howard) who disastrously encouraged British Muslims to organise as a community rather than as citizens, believing it best if government had a "go to group" for the Muslims in Britain. The result was to embed community differences and encourage radicals to to believe their horizon was closer than it ever should have seemed."

Douglas Murray in The Spectator 14th June 2014

Certainly the burning of the Satanic Verses was a major turning point for me politically. Until then I had really only thought of Islam as an "Arab" religion and not really given either it or the presence of a large Muslim community in this country much, if any thought. At the time a number of left wing activists proposed to publish a statement in The Guardian defending Rushdie's right to write freely. I duly sent off a contribution to sign the statement.

Then came a real surprise. Actually a shock. My money was returned with a covering letter telling everyone that they had decided not to publish a defence of Rushdie as it might be construed a "racist".

How defending Rushdie, himself from a (albeit liberal) Muslim background against other Muslims with different and somewhat atrocious views could be seen as "racist" was beyond me. I considered the notion absolute nonsense.

Fast forward to today and we see the results of the absolute failure of both the establishment and the majority of this countries "radicals" in dealing with the rise of a discriminatory. illiberal and undemocratic trend within not just the Muslim "community", but such ideas being enforced by stealth in our schools and our universities.

And yet whilst the cabinet fall out over how to (belatedly) deal with this problem, the remains of the far-left remain in complete denial of the danger of religious, in this case Islamist extremism.

Andrew Coates writes:

Socialist Worker has buried its collective head in the sand about the problems raised by the influence of conservative Islam in education.

Today we read,

"A Tory clampdown on schools in Birmingham has unleashed a torrent of racist filth.

The government ordered investigations after an anonymous letter alleged a Muslim “plot” to take over schools. Right wing newspapers devoted pages to personal attacks on Muslim teachers and governors."

The paper of the SWP claims that there is no evidence for any of the Ofstead charges against Oldknow Academy. Their proof? The Academy has issued...(a) statement stating that the report’s claims are false.

Meanwhile the fruits of our societies collective failure to deal with this problem is spelt out in The Times today (no link £) in its report on the deteriorating situation in Iraq:

Half a million people were driven from their homes in Mosul, Iraq's second largest city on Tuesday. Yesterday ISIS, a bloodthirsty Syria-based terrorist group which counts hundreds of British jihadists among its ranks, took hostages, freed prisoners and used twitter to boast of its' gains.

The question that our society has to ask is where exactly did these British jihadists get their ideas from? More to the point how can we stop the development of such violent men?

The Muslim communities (there is no "one" community, there are many different ones) need to consider what their preachers are teaching their youth. 

The jihadists are not welcomed by the people who live in Iraq (or Syria) as liberators. They are fleeing for their lives.

Something is seriously wrong.

Shouting "Islamophobia" at every criticism, every critic is covering for the extremists. It isn't helping anyone leastsof all the Muslims seeking refuge from the violence that these Islamists inflict on everywhere they go.

Time to face up to the fact there is a real problem and deal with it at it's roots.

That means real and secular education.

Respect works both ways.

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Tory betrayal on Charing Cross Hospital goes straight to the top!

Cross-post from Save Our Hospitals
by Andy Slaughter MP for Hammersmith

The Conservative Party have serious and grave questions to answer over their reckless and irresponsible plans to shake-up West London’s A&E departments.

Jeremy Hunt’s behaviour over Charing Cross and Hammersmith Hospitals has been absolutely disgraceful. I would like to know why he is afraid to discuss the closure of Hammersmith A&E. Is it because he knows that this closure will be a serious blow to local residents who now face longer journey times to hospitals like St Mary’s, which is already at maximum capacity. He explicitly promised that this would not be the case.

He repeats the lie that the new Charing Cross will have a full A&E service. He knows full well that Charing Cross’s A&E department is set to be replaced by a Minor Injuries Unit with no “blue light” service and no Intensive Care Unit. At least 400 acute beds will be lost. The UK’s leading stroke unit will go.

I raised this with him earlier today in the Commons but he had no substantive response other than to simply parrot the discredited lines that the local Conservative Party trot out in Hammersmith & Fulham.

David Cameron also has to answer serious questions as well. He came to Hammersmith in the week before the local elections and made several contentious or outright misleading statements about local A&E services. The extent of the Tory Party’s complete betrayal of West London goes right to the top. I raised all this in a letter to him last month but he has yet to respond.

So the three questions that Jeremy Hunt must answer to justify his attack on me?

1) Why is he reluctant to debate the future of Hammersmith Hospital?

2) Why did David Cameron come to Hammersmith and mislead the public over Charing Cross?

3) Does he think a local hospital with GP-led services can be passed off as a full A&E emergency department?

Monday, 9 June 2014

In memory of Rik Mayall

I was shocked and saddened to hear that Rik Mayall passed away this afternoon. Like most people I first came across his anarchic sense of humour in the Young Ones.

Then came Bottom from which the following clip is taken.

You will be missed.

Sunday, 8 June 2014

Socialist Party Carry On Regardless with takeover by Unite!

The vexed question of the proposed takeover of the PCS union by Unite is raising its ugly head once again as the Socialist Party "fixer" John McInally writes at length in the latest issue of The Socialist:

One of the main debates at PCS annual conference in May was on a possible merger with Unite the Union.

Conference showed that PCS activists and members need information, clarity and assurances that it would be in the best interests of both unions' members.

Members will expect the PCS leadership to leave no stone unturned in fighting for their interests.

Over the last 13 years PCS's left leadership has taken a serious approach to representing its members, including fighting government attacks.

This would be the same leadership that has left the main civil service union in such a mess that PCS is now in a weaker position that either it or its' predecessors have ever been in?

Both membership numbers and participation in the internal life of the union are in decline, not all due to cuts. Members have been slowly drifting away and the leadership has hidden the departure of a whole group (SOCA) from the wider membership for a year.

PCS's so-called left leadership has been anything but serious about representing the membership. Their whole project has been to create an activists based union. 

They don't want a representative union not just because they might find members are not the fanatics that activists tend to be, but they wouldn't be able to use the union for their own nefarious agendas. 

The activists of PCS are mainly Trotskyists, but old fashioned Stalinists and even wild eyed Anarchists are to be found inhabiting the corridors of power and "smoke filled rooms" where decisions are made.

Of course the most powerful of these organisations within PCS is McInally's Socialist Party (of England & Wales),  SPEW for short. They do take the political gravy train they are on very seriously indeed. 

We have been assured by the highly paid Assistant General Secretary Chris Baugh that the unions finances are in order despite reports of shortfalls in the unions pension scheme for our own staff. McInally repeats that assurance in his lengthy rant stating:

PCS, like other organisations, has been negatively affected by the financial crisis in respect of pensions but the union is financially viable even if it is does not merge with Unite.

Finance has never been a driver in this process. Despite actually seeing an increase in its union density in the civil service, PCS has lost membership as a result of an anti-public sector austerity programme.

Really...... must be political self interest then. We are informed that:

Under its left leadership PCS will continue to exert an influence - but it would be a bigger voice in a merged union.

Translate that into plain English and you get the Socialist Party will exert greater influence....


That the Socialist Party and its hangers on are continuing to push for the merger is clearly spelled out:

Neither Left Unity nor the Socialist Party have a fixed position on the merger (bollocks - Ed) other than the necessity of engaging in talks and then conducting a democratic debate and allow members to decide. But we see the possibilities of a merger......

For themselves

That is why we believe the formal talks should begin.

Meanwhile Janice Godrich assured reps there will be a democratic debate. How is not known. The PCS "In house" publications will be the usual one sided rants and the face Book page only has 600 members, so the definition of "democratic" will need to be discussed itself.

Especially as the future of our union is at stake!

I am not alone in having concerns. The Independent Left grouping says:

What we think will happen is that the talks will begin (though there are rumours that Unite is rapidly cooling on the idea of a transfer of PCS members), there will be little in the way of reports and that a ‘deal’ will be announced. This will not guarantee our democratic structures (though we assume there will be transitional arrangements) nor our independent political voice. Then a special conference will be held but it will be limited in what it will be allowed to do – for example it will be banned from giving a recommendation in a ballot to members and there will be a members ballot on the transfer which will have a ‘yes’ recommendation. Therefore branches and activists have to prepare themselves now for those manoeuvres.

...but for now the key message is that the SP intend to plough ahead with the merger.

The Grandees will "Carry on Regardless".

Labour needs a new leader - and not one of the usual suspects

Cross-post by Eric Lee

After Labour’s abysmal showing in the Newark by-election, which closely followed on its poor showing in the European elections, it is becoming increasingly clear that the party faces defeat yet again in the 2015 general election. That would mean another five years of Tory rule, something which would be a disaster for working people in this country.

There’s considerable discontent and unease in Labour’s ranks, and disappointment at Ed Miliband’s role as party leader, making the question of who should lead Labour into the election a crucial one. Yet there are very few good suggestions.

Tony Blair seems to want to return to political life, but that’s not going to happen. Gordon Brown already proved himself a completely ineffective campaigner when he lost to Cameron in 2010. Ed’s brother David has wandered off to do good work for the International Rescue Committee. There seems to be no one around to step in and provide leadership at a time when it is sorely needed.

But let’s try to imagine for just a moment what the ideal Labour leader might look like.

First of all, if Labour is to be in touch with the party’s working-class roots, to re-capture those communities from UKIP, Labour should choose someone who shares those roots, who comes out of the working class.

Second, Labour needs to rebuild its links — already quite tenuous — with the trade union movement. The 54 TUC-affiliated unions have nearly six million members, all of them potential voters, and a leader who could appeal to them specifically would do well in attracting many of them back to the party that bears their name. That leader would also need to appeal to the many millions of working people who are not currently in trade unions, and who often do not vote — the people who feel excluded, disengaged and ignored.

Third, Labour needs to understand how deeply disillusioned voters are with the political class. Its next leader shouldn’t come out of the ranks of Labour’s contingent in Westminster. Labour needs a fresh face, someone who’s not been an MP or Minister.

And finally, the time has come — indeed, it is long overdue — for Labour to have a female leader. Nearly 40 years have passed since the Conservatives accepted that a woman could lead a party (albeit with disastrous results for the country). Why has Labour in opposition and in power always been led by those who are “stale, pale and male”, as I once heard them described?

The person who I heard that from more than a decade ago was running the TUC’s innovative experiment in trade union revitalisation — the Organising Academy. Her name was Frances O’Grady and today she’s the first female general secretary of the TUC in its history.

I think she should also be first female leader of the Labour Party, and the sooner the better.

I doubt very much if Frances would want to do this.

And yet she meets all the criteria I mentioned above. She’s a committed trade unionist, on the Left, articulate, experienced and a proven leader.

If anyone could re-energize the Labour Party, she’s the one.

People who can’t bear the thought of David Cameron being re-elected Prime Minister in 2015 should be prepared to take risks, to do what’s not been done before.

That’s why Labour supporters should launch a ‘Draft Frances’ movement today.

Saturday, 7 June 2014

Censorship: FEMEN return but satirical magazine gets pulped.

FEMEN International

A couple of days ago FEMEN reported that their Face book page had been taken down without any kind of warning but undeterred they are back!

Leave a message of solidarity on their new page:

Photo: FEMEN is an international women’s movement of brave topless female activists painted with the slogans and crowned with flowers.
FEMEN female activists are the women with special training, physically and psychologically ready to implement the humanitarian tasks of any degree of complexity and level of provocation. FEMEN activists are ready to withstand repressions against them and are propelled by the ideological cause alone. FEMEN is the special force of feminism, its spearhead militant unit, modern incarnation of fearless and free Amazons.

In other news the comics website Bleeding Cool reports:

El Jueves is a Spanish satirical magazine published for 39 years, weekly every Wednesday. Which is why it translates as “The Thursday”.

Except this weeks issue, because it featured the story this week’s abdication of King Juan Carlos I, after four decades on the throne, and the anticipated coronation of new King Felipe VI on the cover. It was a rather topical story and inspired the cartoon above featuring the old king passing on a shit filled fly-ridden crown to his successor, a cover drawn by Manel Fontdevila.

For context, in recent years there has been much scandal regarding the king, such as the outrage during the pits of Spanish recession and bank collapse that he took a luxury elephant-hunting trip to Botswana in 2012 with a suspected mistress. Then his daughter, Princess Cristina was suspected of involvement with her husband’s alleged corrupt business dealings. And two suspected illegitimate children had their cases thrown out against him because the court considers the King unable to be tried. And this week, in ill health, the king declared he was stepping down, amidst much anti-royal rhetoric.

But that’s not rhetoric shared by the owners of the publishers, RBA, it seems. After seeing the printed cover, they demanded RBA pulp all 60,000 printed copies of the publication.

After the decision was handed down, a number of cartoonists and writers quit the magazine in protest… including the cover artist.


Bleeding Cool conclude...

It’s worth pointing out that without this action, 60,000 people would have seen the cartoon. Now that it has been pulped, millions will now see it instead…

Stand up to censorship!

Friday, 6 June 2014

All is far from well on the far left...... as usual

As an inveterate "Trot spotter", I regularly visit the websites and publications of the various groups and sects on line or in print to catch up on their latest wheezes and read the weird and oddly intriguing formulations that they concoct. Every so often the whole world of the far left seems to stand on its head, take a whirl rearrange itself under varying names to proclaim the next, new way forward....

And so it has since the beginning.

One of the latest projects, Left Unity has been getting itself together, slowly bit, by bit despite clearly hampering itself with the establishment of internal factions (they call the "platforms, go figure) and are already on a par with the main two outfits of the far left, the SWP and the Socialist Party of England & Wales (SPEW for short).

Unlike others they have even opened up their internal conferences to public scrutiny by broadcasting these illustrious events, live, yes live on the Internet, recognising that in the age of the "World Wide Web" the conspiratorial era so beloved by the Bolsheviks of old is now over.... almost.

A lesson the Prof and his "lynch mob" in the SWP failed to take heed of in the year long split over the "comrade delta" affair. Little or nothing remains "secret" any more. But I digress.

The new Left Unity group has barely got its feet on the ground when inveterate sectarians decide to either (a) start an irrelevant and quite insane row or (b) quit in disgust because they don't get their own way.

The tiny and possibly quite mad Weekly Worker crew of the grandly named Communist Party of Great Britain (membership beleived to be less than 50) has been attacking Left Unity's "cowardly" leadership for rejecting the policy of "Workers Militias", you know, the groups of armed worker-soldiers necessary to combat capitalism. They take exception to comments made by Left Unity "speaker" during an interview with Andrew Neil on TV in the latest addition of their rag:

The Communist Platform’s motion calling for the “disbanding of the standing army” and the “right of the people to bear arms” reminded Neil of America’s Tea Party. Or so he said. Would Shaheen be voting for this madness at LU’s March 29 Manchester conference? No, replied the comrade. “I disagree ... I will be voting against ... the majority of Left Unity members are disaffected Labour voters.”

Patrick Black of Sheffield Left Unity. He too wants to avoid the “loony left” tag. With that end in mind he launched a furious attack on the “small, sad and lonely political ‘sects’ existing within the party”. They are in need of a serious “reality check”, since they do not “appear to possess a shred of common sense”. Naturally, he singles out the Communist Platform for “putting forward crazy motions to disband the British army and create armed people’s militias”

The CPGB's "guru" Jack Conrad concludes:

...let us put our trust in a “well regulated militia” and the “right of the people to keep and bear arms”.

Well Conrad's right about one thing revolution is about violence. And Marxist "coups" have always ended well? No? 

Oh well perhaps they can team up with permanent splitter and gobshite Tony Greenstein who offers his resignation for the world to see and mourn over in this weeks Weedy Worker. He writes rants:

I sent an open letter to Left Unity from my website earlier this year ( and asked that it be published on LU’s website, a request that was ignored. I notice though how Fred Leplat, a prominent member of Socialist Resistance, has an article on the website and certain other members have privileged access. Clearly some people are more equal than others.

Or maybe less self-indulgent, but let him continue:

As a political activist in the student movement, Irish, anti-fascist, unemployed and Palestine solidarity campaigns for the past 40 years, I have wondered in amazement at where LU’s leadership believes it is going and its complete lack of strategy, as the old, seasoned cooks of the left - Socialist Resistance, the Socialist Workers Party émigrés and people like Andrew Burgin, Liz Davies and Kate Hudson - have taken an organisational and political grip over LU.

In plain English they appear to ignore him so Gobby concludes:

I have therefore decided that no purpose is served by my continuing to remain a member and I have decided to resign from Left Unity.

Now whilst I might concur Left Unity is indeed a waste of time, one has to be fair and point out the organisation hasn't even had its' first official birthday since their first actual conference. Still egos do what egos must.

Talking of ego's the website I "love to hate" (or one of them anyway), that of Socialist Unity run by arch-Stalinists Andy Newman and John Wight has disappeared, at least for the 48 hours prior to the writing of this post. Domain expired is all we get. Shame, but are we really going to miss such obfuscating drivel as this penned in what may have been the final post by Cardinal-Newman, who writes of the Tienanmen square massacre:

The bloody repression of 1989 was a terrible atrocity … But the repression was actually relatively short lived … Although there was some continued circumspection, academic criticism continued within China, and the main consequence was intellectual disorientation rather than actual prohibition or censorship.

Yet another mealy mouthed gobshite.

Then there's John McInally's article on the PCS/Unite merger takeover.......

But that can wait until Sunday!