Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/290/20224

From The Socialist newspaper, 7 March 2003

Mass Action needed to stop War

THE HUGE parliamentary revolt last week against Blair's war plans was all the more remarkable given that the Tory party officially lined up behind Blair and the payroll vote of Labour ministers and parliamentary secretaries - Blair's Human Shield - were obliged to vote for the government's motion.

While there has been a lot of media hot air about the re-establishment of Parliament's true 'democratic' role after the revolt, the reason the political earth moved last week was because the people in their millions had moved in the weeks and months preceding this parliamentary showpiece.

Given the previous timid nature of the majority of Labour's backbench MPs, the revolt was a huge earthquake on the political Richter scale, which has left Blair seriously wounded.

But Blair has said he will carry on towards war as a matter of 'conscience', ignoring the millions marching and hundreds of MPs rebelling. Blair's current course now represents a high-risk strategy for the government. Even if he and his supporters were to win another parliamentary vote, especially if it is without a second UN resolution, then the revolt could again be as high or higher than last week's vote.

If Blair clearly does not command support of his MPs and significant sections of Parliament upon starting a war, then his current wounds could become fatally gangrenous.

There is an urgent need to intensify the pressure through the anti-war and union movement. In particular, the call for effective industrial action, as part of a campaign of mass civil disobedience, can further escalate the crisis engulfing New Labour.

People's Assembly

IN THE face of Blair's arrogance and blatant disregard of the anti-war views of the majority of people in this country, the Stop the War Coalition is organising a People's Assembly against war, which will convene on 12 March.

The aim is for the Assembly to be a proper People's Parliament, with delegates drawn from the vast anti-war majority the length and breadth of Britain. All initiatives to pull together the million-plus who marched should be built for - especially the proposal to use the Assembly to call for mass action to stop the war, including industrial action.

This call would not cut across but would strengthen the moves that are needed inside the trade unions and workplaces to organise for industrial action - as is being done in the CWU. (See below)

The London RMT is sending 40 delegates to the assembly. Union leader Bob Crow is urging others to follow the RMT lead: "If the government won't stop this war, the people will have to work out how we can stop this war ourselves".

'Stop work to stop the war' is now a crucial slogan for taking the anti-war movement forward. Workers should be preparing now, from below in the workplaces for action on Day X - the day that war is declared.

New Workers' Party

The idea of a People's Assembly as "an alternative democratic institution to the government" should not be used to evade the central need to build a permanent political alternative to New Labour - a new workers' party.

The People's Assemblies and other forums should be used to discuss what steps are needed to build a new political alternative.

If just 10% of the million plus who marched on 15 February supported the establishment of a new party, this would give the new organisation 100,000 or so members and the potential to have a major impact on the situation unfolding in Britain.

The Assembly needs to call for decisive action now, including the widest possible mass civil disobedience, especially workplace action.

The call for a European-wide 24-hour general strike on 21 March, proposed by several European trade unions, must also be taken up.


Socialist Party member wins CWU Vote for Action

"The CWU reconfirms its total opposition to the impending war on Iraq and will campaign for all members to take protest action on the day that war is officially declared".

THE FIRST national union has come out in favour of action on Day X - the day that war is declared. On 27 February, Socialist Party member Bernard Roome successfully moved the above resolution at the national executive committee of the Communication Workers Union (CWU).

CWU members around the country should act on this important resolution now to organise for action for Day X. This initiative should be repeated in other unions and the momentum built for strike action against the war.


People's Assembly

THE STOP the War Coalition (STWC) is suggesting that open anti-war meetings are held in every possible community from 24 February - 10 March to elect delegates to the People's Assembly.

Rough guide to numbers: five representatives if a community has a population of under 100,000, ten if up to 500,000, up to 15 for big cities. Local union branches, mosques, other groups could elect two reps each. National organisations should elect reps along the same lines as above.

Donate to the Socialist Party

Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our Fighting Fund.

Please donate here.

All payments are made through a secure server.

My donation

 

Your message: 

 


In The Socialist 7 March 2003:

Action Now To Stop Bush & Blair's War

Firefighters Demand A Living Wage

Mass Action needed to stop War

School and College Student Action Friday 7th March

Bush's Bribes And Dirty Tricks

A New Alternative To New Labour?

Anti-War Reports

International Women's Day

General Strike In Algeria

SSP Conference: Scottish Socialists Debate The Way Forward


 

Home   |   The Socialist 7 March 2003   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  




Related links:

War:

triangleReaders' comments

trianglePalestinians need a new socialist intifada

triangleStop the Israeli state terror

triangleStop war on Gaza demo, London 15.5.21. Socialist Party members were at the many protests across Britain

triangleHow partition of Ireland derailed a revolutionary struggle for national and social liberation

Peoples Assembly:

triangleLetter to organisers of 16th July demo

triangleLondon: National anti-austerity demonstration

triangleCity of London fills with defiance against austerity

trianglePeople's Assembly demonstration: End austerity now

Union:

triangleRedbridge school walkout over victimised union rep

triangleConference 2021: Divide between union leaders and rank-and-file exposed

triangleLeft candidate needed for Unite general secretary election

CWU:

triangleCWU elections: Vote for a fighting, campaigning, socialist EC member

triangleCWU members' resolve to strike still firm as union enters talks

Anti-war:

triangleTens of thousands march against Israeli state terror

Socialist Party:

triangleSouthampton Socialist Party: A report from NSSN conference

Stop the War Coalition:

triangle15 years since the invasion of Iraq: what we said

News and socialist analysis

News and socialist analysis

16/6/21

Women

Women's health matters

16/6/21

Tamil

Tamil Solidarity asylum victory

16/6/21

Wales

Beth Roper inquest: Train company failures ignored

16/6/21

Vaccine

Make vaccine technology public, nationalise big-pharma

16/6/21

Babies

Neonatal leave introduced: Unions must fight for extensions and full pay

9/6/21

Schools

Fight for the funding our schools and colleges need

9/6/21

Unite

Left candidate needed for Unite general secretary election

9/6/21

Unions

If unions give a lead, workers are fully prepared to fight and win victories

9/6/21

Tory party

Tory splits and infighting growing

9/6/21

Climate change

G7 Can't solve poverty, Covid and climate change - join the struggle for Socialism

9/6/21

Tax

G7 tax deal won't challenge corporate power

9/6/21

Racism

Dea-John Reid murder: Jobs, homes and services, not racism

8/6/21

NHS

'Let's fight to win on NHS pay and funding'

2/6/21

Covid

Capitalism's Covid failings

2/6/21

Union

Unite general secretary campaign: Statement from Howard Beckett

triangleMore News and socialist analysis articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: [email protected]

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 079 8202 1969

East Mids: 077 3797 8057

London: 075 4018 9052

North East: 078 4114 4890

North West 079 5437 6096

South West: 077 5979 6478

Southern: 078 3368 1910

Wales: 079 3539 1947

West Mids: 024 7655 5620

Yorkshire: 078 0983 9793

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


June 2021

May 2021

April 2021

March 2021

February 2021

January 2021

2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999