Archive article from The Socialist Issue 401
No to terrorism
No to war
AS MILLIONS of us in London go about our daily lives the nightmare of Thursday 7 July still looms over us. The horrific killing of ordinary people, of all ages and from every ethnic group, has shocked and saddened millions in London and beyond. The socialist utterly condemns these attacks as we did those of 9/11, the Madrid bombings and all similar attacks aimed at indiscriminate slaughter.
Just over two years ago two million people marched through the streets of London to try and stop the invasion of Iraq. They had the support of the majority of the population. Without doubt some of the victims of the bombings were amongst those marchers. This appalling act was not aimed at the warmongers but at working-class people.
George Bush was able to use outrage at 9/11 to justify war against Iraq and Afghanistan. Tony Blair is using grief at this latest atrocity to try and bolster his own position. He has been helped by the mainstream political parties' unity in denying any link between increased terrorism and the occupation of Iraq.
Yet the government's own Joint Intelligence Committee stated before the war that the terrorist threat "would be heightened by military action against Iraq" (see also page 2).
The attempts of the government to disguise the reasons we live in an increasingly unstable and violent world will not work. The socialist is campaigning for the Stop the War Coalition, of which we are part, to urgently call a national demonstration under the banner 'no to terrorism, no to war' to bring together working-class people from all backgrounds in unity against both the horrific attacks in London and the bloody reality of occupied Iraq – where more than 100,000 civilians have been killed.
AS PART of his propaganda offensive Blair has claimed that the G8 summit deal is the 'most powerful riposte to the forces of terrorism' because it supposedly lays the basis for ending poverty in Africa.
We marched on the Make Poverty History demonstrations, along with hundreds of thousands of others, but we explained that the G8 deal was a con. Far from ending poverty, it gives a few crumbs to a few countries, and demands that those countries hand over their state-run public services and natural resources to Western companies in return. Privatisation and increased exploitation are at the core of the G8 deal, just as they are at the centre of all Blair's policies at home.
Here in Britain we are also facing relentless cuts and privatisation in our public services, including those that heroically assisted the victims of the terrorist attacks. Manchester Road fire station, based in the City of Westminster, for example, is currently fighting closure, and many other central London fire stations face the loss of engines.
Bush, Blair and the rest of the G8 leaders act in the interests of the billionaires – 400 of whom own more than the poorest 50% of the planet. Bush, for example, invaded Iraq to boost the prestige of US imperialism and to follow the dream of cheap oil, hoping to increase US corporations' profits. The 500 multinational companies that dominate 70% of world trade are not driven by a desire to end poverty, war or terrorism, but a rapacious need to increase their own profits.
Our public services, the 30,000 children who die from poverty every single day, and the victims of the occupation of Iraq: all are ultimately sacrificed to capitalism's drive to make profits.
There is an urgent need to build a mass socialist alternative that will defend public services, but will also fight against terrorism, war and poverty – and the capitalist system which creates them.
Download our leaflet: No to terrorism! No to war! No to racism! (pdf 48k)
to terrorism - No to war on our doorstep bombings and Iraq racism and Islamophobia London Bombings: the Socialist view statement on the London bombings