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Workers' Weekly Internet Edition: Article Index :
UNISON Northern Region Council Passes Motion -The Alternative to War
"Enduring Strategic Partnership":
The Need for an Anti-War Government
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The Line of March Monthly Publication of RCPB(ML)Subscribe
The February issue of The Line of March, the Party’s monthly publication, has just come off the press. It is planned that The Line of March will be published on the first weekend of each month in 2012.
The February issue carries an editorial, “The Road Ahead in 2012: Building Resistance and Planting the Alternative”.
The editorial points out that this year is a very crucial time in the development of the world situation, but also in the development of the Party's work. The fight for the alternative is being discussed in the workers’ and people’s movements. This alternative represents a great aspiration of the working class that there is something else, that there is something that needs to be changed. It is the outlook that the working class and people want and are fighting for a different kind of society. The editorial continues:
“There is a slogan which reminds us of what social force we are addressing: Only the Working Class Can Save the Day. It is a reminder that the cutting edge of the Party’s work is to mobilise the working class to build an effective Workers' Opposition around the alternative, and to organise an effective resistance to the Coalition’s anti-social, anti-worker, pro-war agenda.
“The workers must themselves occupy the space for change as an independent political force asserting their own rights, and asserting that they have to fight to defend the rights of all. A new direction for the economy and society is a necessity. The Party wants to make sure that the workers as a whole acquire that new social consciousness which is necessary for society to advance, and then this new social consciousness is what will be the powerful forces to transform the situation and take the working class on to a situation where they can begin to turn things around and themselves to go on the offensive. How to rouse everyone to participate in the class battles in order to acquire this new social consciousness is the Party’s preoccupation at this time. It bears in mind that what is decisive in transforming the world is the activation of the human factor/social consciousness.
“The fight for an anti-war government remains a key task. The anti-war movement is not just a protest movement but is concerned with the future of society. It is necessary to organise for an alternative to war especially in the working class movement, and bring to the forefront the necessity for the people to be the decision-makers so as to have the power to prevent war, aggression and the flouting of the sovereignty of people and nations. The key question is to get organised, to build conscious participation, on this basis.
“The objective situation facing the youth is one where they are being denied a future. Particularly dangerous is the emphasis on so-called “gang culture” by the ruling elite as a means of targeting the youth. But the youth and students are also taking up the cause of fighting for their rights and fighting for the alternative. It is very important for the Party, in these circumstances, to address the issue of the mobilisation of the youth for modern communism.
“In 2012, RCPB(ML) will address these objective necessities in the course of creating the subjective conditions for the revolutionary transformation of society. It will strengthen its journalistic and technical work with this aim. There are very difficult problems facing the working class and people caused by monopoly dictate, the dreams of empire, the tearing up of all the norms that were established after the Second World War. But the Party stands by its conviction that first of all the working class is that social force which will lead society in transforming the situation. Secondly, the youth are extremely enthusiastic about changing the world and finding out what necessity is in that regard.”
The editorial concludes with the thought that a revolutionary, optimistic, human-centred outlook, encouraging the social side of everyone, with the workers at the head, and establishing that the ability to think is really at the centre of all considerations, will enable the working class and its mass communist party to collectively find a way forward.
Amongst other features, the February issue of The Line of March also includes a review of the events which in 2011 marked the 75th anniversary of Cornelius Cardew, the outstanding musician, composer and communist who was tragically killed in a hit-and-run incident in December 1981. Cornelius was a member of the Central Committee of RCPB(ML) and Secretary of the Progressive Cultural Association. It says:
“The Glasgow Caledonian University held a symposium with international speakers. London's Morley College, an adult education college, where Cornelius tutored from 1968-73, held a festival of his music, together with a weekend conference. Inaugurating these events, the Principal of the College highlighted Cornelius' bravery as one of his defining characteristics. The opening speech of the symposium and other presentations were made by colleagues of Cornelius who worked with him and elaborated on different aspects of his life and work, as well as by young people who have taken up the study of his work.
“A stunning concert was held on December
17 at Conway Hall in which six outstanding pianists and a violinist performed
the spectacular late instrumental works. The film on Cornelius Cardew,
‘The Content of Our Song’, by film-maker Stuart Monro was also
shown on this occasion. Visit:
The articles points out that these events demonstrated what an intense interest there is in the musical world as a whole and amongst serious political activists in the revolutionary traditions which Cornelius Cardew represented.
The annual subscription for The Line of
March is £35.95. Cheques should be made payable to
“RCPB(ML)” and sent to 170 Wandsworth Road, London SW8 2LA. The
February 2012 issue may be viewed as a pdf at:
The Line of March February 2012
On January 18, Unison Northern Region Council comprising Unison delegates from the public sector workers across the northern region passed a motion calling for co-operation with other trade unions, the TUC and with the Stop the War movement to promote and fight for the alternative to these wars.
Moving the motion Roger Nettleship, delegate of Unison South Tyneside Health Branch, pointed out to the delegates: "I like many Unison members have been involved with the Tyneside Stop the War Coalition and, like Unison is affiliated to the Stop the War Coalition, our branch is affiliated to the local Stop the War group. However, there is now increasing concern from members that their families are being more and more involved in these wars. And not only in Afghanistan where one of the longest wars of occupation since the second world war has cost the lives of 400 British soldiers, and tens of thousands of Afghan people."
He continued that "it is prescient that the trade union movement can and should bring better organisation and get involved, not only to support the anti-war movement and end the current wars, but also to oppose further ones, with the threat to Syria and Iran and the danger that this brings us closer to a new world war.”
“The British people and our members have been sold the lie that justifies these wars and the murdering of tens of thousands of people when every time there is an alternative to these wars," he said.
The motion will further enable the union in the region to advance the discussion and recommendations in line with its policy that represents the interests of its members in promoting and fighting for the alternative to these wars.
Unison Northern Regional Council Motion
The Alternative to War
Unison Regional Council welcomes the TUC Congress decision to call for the rapid withdrawal of British forces from Afghanistan and to demand a political solution to the problems of that country. It notes that this conflict has cost the lives of tens of thousands of Afghanistan people and nearly 400 British soldiers, the occupation of Afghanistan, and has now spread to Pakistan, with all the additional dangers that entails.
Unison Regional Council recognises that before the invasion of Afghanistan, there was always an alternative to war and the “war on terror” which was launched by the US and Britain and others powers. Following 9-11 the British government should have responded to what was a criminal action by a small group of people to supporting a criminal investigation to find the perpetrators and not a war. There was no justification to launch a war against the sovereign country of Afghanistan and its people, a war which has lasted more than 10 years and has led to the death of tens of thousands. The then British government ignored millions of British people who also demanded an alternative to the US and British invasion of Iraq and instead they launched a war that has killed more than one million Iraqis in the invasion and occupation. This year, the Cameron Government is carrying on this pro-war policy and launched the bombing of Libya, killing thousands of people with its NATO allies siding with one side in an internal conflict in a sovereign country when there was an alternative to promote negotiations between the two sides without military intervention. The Cameron Government is now setting its warmongering agenda for military interference in Syria and Iran. The Regional Council is extremely concerned over the escalating moves to involve Britain in further wars of intervention and the implications for a new world war.
Unison Regional Council calls for co-operation with other Trade Unions and with the Stop the War Movement to promote and fight for the alternative to these wars. To oppose the huge loss in human and material resources wasted in this death and destruction to other countries and to our own. To uphold the sovereignty of workers in other countries to decide their own future without military intervention from Britain and other powers and to end Britain’s involvement in alliances that do not promote the alternative to war.
Motion approved at a quorate meeting of South Tyneside Health Branch Committee held 4pm on: December 15 2011
"Enduring Strategic Partnership”:
It has been announced that following the recent visit of Afghan President Ahmad Karzai, the governments of Britain and Afghanistan have signed what is referred to as an “Enduring Strategic Partnership”, which commits Britain to a policy of continuing interference in Afghanistan long after the removal of the occupying military forces currently scheduled for the end of 2014.
No precise details of the agreement have been released. According to David Cameron, Britain and Afghanistan will in future have a relationship that will “be about diplomacy, about aid, about trade, about investment and about very strong two-way diplomatic ties”, but it is clear that the British government will continue to train the Afghan police and army and to intervene in its economy and internal politics. It will therefore not be a relationship based on the “friendship of two sovereign nations”, as the Prime Minister claims, but rather one based on the interests of Britain and the other big powers that invaded Afghanistan in 2001 and have occupied it ever since. It therefore could not be any more than an agreement between the political representatives of the occupying forces and those of a body dependent on those occupiers. The Afghan President also signed similar agreements with the governments of France and Italy during his recent tour of Europe, which suggests that efforts are being made to establish a proxy state under the auspices of the warmongering NATO.
The Enduring Strategic Partnership is being established at a time when it is reported that the number of British military deaths in Afghanistan has nearly reached the four hundred mark and that after over ten years of war there is a consensus that it is impossible for NATO forces to gain a permanent military victory. Instead, efforts are being made to prepare conditions for the period after 2014. This week the US government, which still has nearly 100,000 troops in Afghanistan, announced that it was committed to reducing that number to less than 70,000 by the end of the year but also that it was preparing the conditions for making a “transition from a combat role to a training, advice and assist role” by the end of 2013.
However, the weakness, isolation and unpopularity of the Karzai regime does not suggest that conditions have yet been created for such a proxy state. Indeed, what is now being envisaged is some accommodation between the US-led NATO and those it has been fighting against for over a decade, with the aim of preserving the influence of the Anglo-Americans and their allies in Afghanistan. Commentators see the fact that representatives of the so-called Taliban have recently opened a bureau in Qatar and have met with representatives of the US as a sign that negotiations are already proceeding. The evidence suggests that there is considerable jockeying for position not only in Afghanistan but also throughout the region.
As in the past, the control of Afghanistan, the cockpit of Asia, remains an important goal for the Anglo-Americans in their drive to dominate central Asia and in particular in their contention with Russia and China, a contention which is at present coming to the fore. What is evident is that the British government continues with its interventionist policy in regard to Afghanistan alongside the US, whatever the human or material cost. What is more it is also stepping up its warmongering and interventionist role in regard to Syria and Iran and has increased its interference in East Africa particularly in regard to Somalia, which is to be the subject of a major conference later this month and has just been visited by William Hague, the Foreign Secretary.
British governments continue to present their global interference as being based on the loftiest of motives, just as their nineteenth century predecessors boasted of the “civilising mission” and the “white man’s burden” while they scrambled to control the world’s markets and resources. Over a decade of war in Afghanistan, the invasion of Iraq as well as military intervention in Libya have brought neither political stability to these countries nor added to the safety of Britain’s citizens; indeed the world has become increasingly unstable as a result of invasion and occupation. Nevertheless, the current government is preparing for further intervention and interference around the world to further the economic and strategic interests of those it represents. In these circumstances, it is the responsibility of all peace-loving people to step up their struggles to establish an anti-war government which represents the interest of the majority, is committed to respecting the sovereignty of all countries, to upholding the principle of non-interference and dedicated to resolving disputes by peaceful means.
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