Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1052/29438

From The Socialist newspaper, 14 August 2019

Far right seen off at Oxford Circus - but trade union lead needed

Some of the Socialist Party members on the 3 August counter-demo, photo Kevin Parslow

Some of the Socialist Party members on the 3 August counter-demo, photo Kevin Parslow   (Click to enlarge)

Mark Best, East London Socialist Party

Socialist Party members joined several hundred others at a counter-demonstration opposing supporters of the jailed far-right provocateur 'Tommy Robinson' on Saturday 3 August.

Organised by the anti-racist group 'Stand Up to Racism' (SUTR) and the anarchist-led London Anti-Fascists, this protest again demonstrated that the trade unions need to take the lead in the fight against the far right. The Socialist Party has long emphasised and campaigned for this.

It is important to counter the far right. Especially we need to mobilise to defend local communities.

Anti-racist protesters and police saw off attempts by the far right to attack the counter-demonstration on this occasion. However, by the end of the march, anti-racist protesters were kettled in a pen, leaving groups of the far right to march down Regent Street unopposed.

Those on the counter-demonstration were left in the dark about what was happening. Why did the march repeatedly stop on the way to Oxford Circus? Where were we going? What were the plans when we got there? SUTR organisers did not give a lead and had nothing to say when asked what was going on.

The Socialist Party gave out our leaflets on the need to fight to kick out the Tory government, and for Jeremy Corbyn to contest a general election on a socialist programme.

Construction workers and shoppers at the sides of the counter-demo took our leaflets and bought copies of the Socialist.

Unfortunately, trade union banners and delegations were almost entirely absent. In 2018, the Trade Union Congress (TUC) made the decision to launch a "jobs, homes, not racism" campaign to unite the trade union movement in the campaign against the far right. This has not materialised in any serious way.

Socialist Party members have moved motions in trade union branches and conferences calling for union leaders and the TUC to act on this decision - but also for union branches not to wait. Union branches should discuss and debate "the slogans and tactics necessary to defeat the far right, putting the resources, authority and power of the organised working class at the centre of a mass, anti-racist, anti-austerity movement."

Part of this has to be responding to the previous calls for a trade union stewarding group for demonstrations such as this. Stewards from the unions, disciplined and accountable, would be able to organise to defend protesters from the far right - and from police if necessary.

We could then rely on the collective strength of our own working-class organisations, instead of untrustworthy agreements with the police or the unaccountable actions of anonymous 'leaders'.

This must be linked to a political campaign against the divisive, racist politics of Robinson and his ilk. The unions represent over six million workers in Britain. If the unions could mobilise a serious section of workers against the far right, this would be a real blow to their confidence.

But to do this, the fight against racism has to include the fight against the conditions that allow racism to flourish. We fight for jobs, homes and services, against the 'race to the bottom'. Trade union action on these issues could build a movement that would cut across the present small support for the far right.

Capitalism will attempt to divide workers to maintain the profit system. The working class in struggle can sweep aside these divisions, but to do so needs a programme worth fighting for.

Workers fighting against the bosses and the bosses' government, to win any improvements we can, shows our power as workers. We fight for a socialist society where workers collectively own and democratically control the wealth in society, so we can provide jobs, homes and services for all.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 14 August 2019:


What we think

General election looms... Capitalists in chaos: fight for socialism


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Far right seen off at Oxford Circus

After the fire: fight for facilities for all

Hereford and Worcester: stop the fire cuts!

Dundee: young workers meet

Leeds estate residents push back private development


News

Boot out Boris and all the Tory toffs - fight for socialist policies for the 99% not the 0.1%

Tory bribes don't hide destruction of NHS


Opinion

TV: Young, British and Depressed - "What is wrong with our society that all these people are feeling this way?"


Historic events

Northern Ireland, August '69: 'Battle of the Bogside' and British troops on the streets

The Peterloo Massacre 1819: When a fearful ruling class tried to crush working-class political aspirations


Workplace news

Fight back against the retail bosses!

Lincolnshire health workers strike against £2,000 loss of pay

Bradford: All-out action to defeat backdoor NHS privatisation

Hull: Karro Food meat processors strike against poverty pay

Equity: reject UK Theatre's pay cut deal

Summer of airline industry strikes against low pay and worsening conditions

Harland and Wolff occupation continues - renationalise to save the shipyard


International socialist news and analysis

Kashmir crisis: Stop the attack on democratic rights

Pro-democracy protests continue to rage in Hong Kong


 

Home   |   The Socialist 14 August 2019   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Far right:

triangleFar right pose increasing terrorism threat

triangleFar right makes gains in Germany

triangleBirmingham South East Socialist Party: How can we stop the rise of the far right?

triangleWirral Socialist Party: Brazil - Bolsanaro and the rise of the far right

triangleSequel to 'A Very British Coup' - workers' struggle, not bosses' EU and media, is route to socialism

Union:

triangleTrade unions - new decade, new challenges

triangleForeign Office workers' strike

triangleBig Unison south east regional meeting votes for anti-cuts position

triangleLondon NSSN meeting

Trade union:

triangleLeicester Socialist Party: Fighting austerity & anti-trade union laws

triangleLondon NSSN meeting: Fight the anti-trade union laws, support the strikes!

triangleTurkey: Reinstate union members at SF Trade Leather!

Socialist:

triangleSocialist Sellers

triangle20 years of housing failure

Racism:

triangleUnite against terrorism, racism, war and austerity

London:

triangleEast London Socialist Party: Coronavirus and the failure of capitalism

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

12/2/20

Unison

Big Unison south east regional meeting votes for anti-cuts position

12/2/20

Hackney

Hackney: We don't want homes and retail units working-class people can't afford

12/2/20

Tamil

Building a working-class movement for Tamil rights

12/2/20

May Day

Build independent workers' media with May Day greetings

12/2/20

Birmingham

Support Clive Walder

12/2/20

Strike

Foreign Office workers' strike

12/2/20

East London

East London school strikes against academisation continue

12/2/20

Strike

Westex workers win increased pay offer in 11th week of strike

12/2/20

PCS

PCS union: Uniting the left around a leadership that can win for members

12/2/20

Children

Callous Tory cuts to children's speech therapy in Nottinghamshire

12/2/20

Climate change

Tackling climate change: Johnson emits huge quantities of hot air!

12/2/20

Nottingham

Nottingham: death of vulnerable claimant

12/2/20

DWP

UC stopped without warning

12/2/20

Housing

20 years of housing failure

12/2/20

Socialist

Socialist Sellers

triangleMore Reports and campaigns 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: info@socialistparty.org.uk

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: 020 8988 8786

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: 077 0671 0041

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


February 2020

January 2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999