London – another huge demo
Leicester Socialist Party members Alex Gillham and Sam Ward participated in the latest huge London demonstration on 25 November.
We attended the London demonstration, and the Saturday evening rally at Socialism 2023 afterwards (see pages 6-7).
As soon as we left Bond Street station, the first thing we spotted was a Socialist Party gazebo, run by party members. It was very effective seeing a large number of stands, where protesters could buy the Socialist paper, and get our materials.
It is a busy time for Socialist Party members. In Leicestershire, we have attended demonstrations every week since 7 October.
A march in Leicester on 19 November attracted 2,000 protesters – our biggest Palestine event to-date. But the London march was on another scale.
It was fantastic to see the very strong presence of the Socialist Party. Our socialist messaging could be seen everywhere across the demonstration.
People were proud to display our placards. And we were able to sell the Socialist paper to people who approached us because they recognised our material.
We observed a significant level of anti-Starmer sentiment, including a large number of homemade signs criticising Starmer’s Labour.
Waltham Forest, east London – dissatisfied with Labour
A demonstration, primarily for students in support of a ceasefire in Gaza, was well-attended. About 1,000 stood around the lit pool in front of the town hall.
This was an opportunity to not only protest at the needless murder in the Middle East, but to express dissatisfaction with the leadership at all levels in this country, including the Starmer-loving Labour council.
No sooner had we brought out our Socialist papers, leaflets and collecting tins for people to donate to fund our message, young people were showing an interest. One asked to join the Socialist Party.
On a cold, dark Friday night the main communication was the, now familiar, songs from the Palestinian repertoire. But amongst the crowd, it was still possible to have those vital, incisive conversations that enable people to see a way out of the madness.
The Socialist Party calls for a socialist intifada. At these gatherings, when people hear our socialist programme and tune in to our ideas, they very often respond positively.
Many Socialist Party branches around the country will identify with this scenario. It is worth participating in every minute of the protests.
Hackney, east London – “Sunak is a wasteman”
Over 200 primary school children, parents, and some older students filled the steps in front of Hackney Town Hall and the concourse below on Friday 24 November.
One 9 or 10 year old, with a maturity beyond his age, led several of the chants, including: “Sunak is a wasteman”. The chanting and speakers went on for well over an hour.
Our leaflets and paper were readily received by many of the parents and older students.
Camden, north London – boisterous support
150 demonstrators were in a boisterous mood, chanting slogans, and waving flags and banners. And people on the pavement were filming and taking photos in support.