AWSM Archives: “No Blood For Water”?

Aotearoa Workers Solidarity Movement

AWSM Note: Here we re-post an article that first appeared on our previous site in July 2013. It was written by our long term guest contributor ‘Pink Panther’ and looks at the geopolitical situation in Syria at that time.

Since 1975 most of the major military conflicts – Lebanon, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Afghanistan and Libya – have been civil wars. Regional or super powers have intervened supposedly to save lives and resolve each conflict. They supposedly try to do this by removing the “bad guys” but have ended up leaving the country they came in to ‘save’, an even bigger mess than it was before they intervened. Often, this is because the intervention is driven by profit or a power obsessed ideology, rather than any understanding of the real situation.

In Vietnam the conflict was not just about the imperialists/capitalists on one side and the communists on the other. It was also a war between the people who lived in the highlands and those who lived in the lowlands, a war between the Catholic minority that dominated political life in South Vietnam and the Buddhist majority and a war between a Soviet-backed elite in Hanoi and a U.S-backed elite in Saigon (today Ho Chi Minh City). Only the ideologues on both sides believed it was a war of freedom or liberation. For most people it was a pointless and incredibly expensive bloodbath that left millions of Vietnamese civilians dead and deadly ordinance lying around everywhere, which still kills hundreds of people every year.

The war in Afghanistan in the 1980s was also portrayed in a breathtakingly simplistic manner by both its supporters, who painted it as a war against communist tyranny and liberation, and one waged over gas and oil by its opponents. It was actually more a civil war between tribal groups, warlords and a puppet government backed by the Soviet Union. It was also an ethnic and sectarian conflict. In what would later rebound badly, the United States backed the Muhajadeen’s war against the communists. The superpower did this by using the Muhajadeen’s Islamic religion as a motivator to encourage a fight against the infidels in the country. The Muhajadeen not only slaughtered the more moderate elements of Afghan society but once the Soviets were gone, they imposed a theocratic regime that was far worse than anything done by the Soviet Union.

Cue forward twenty years and the United States has found itself bogged down fighting the children of those Muhajadeen fighters they trained to fight the Soviets in the 1980s. In response, the same tiresome slogans have been trotted out by liberals and elements on the Left, while the supporters of the war claim it’s a war against the bogeyman of terrorism. This is done even though none involved in the terror attack used to justify the invasion of Afghanistan – the 9/11 attacks – were Afghan nationals. Most of those involved in the attacks were from Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Pakistan.

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International repression news: Bulgaria, Belarus, Indonesia, the US and more

Cautiously pessimistic

JOCKIn Bulgaria, antifascist prisoner and prison organiser Jock Palfreeman continues his hunger strike, which has now gone on for a month. The Bulgarian families and friends of prisoners group write:

“Jock Palfreeman’s hunger strike is in its 30th day today, May 21st. On April 21st 2019, Palfreeman declared a hunger strike due to the systematic pressure and harassment that he has been subjected to over the last two years from the prison administration and the Ministry of Justice because of his human rights work with Bulgarian Prisoners’ Association and as a form of protest against widespread corruption and abuse of power in Bulgarian prisons.

Palfreeman and BRPA are targeted for the political work they are doing within prisons and for speaking up against its administration and representatives of the Ministry of Justice!

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Red & Black TV: WILL TOMMY ROBINSON BECOME AN M.E.P ?

Oxford students are boycotting their Union Society after a Katie Hopkins invite

gal-dem

A boycott of the Oxford Union has been launched in opposition to far-right figureheads being invited to speak at the student society. In an open letter first posted to Twitter on Sunday, students, academics and Oxford residents expressed “firm and uncompromising opposition to all forms of fascism and racism”, calling on others to boycott all events hosted by the union. The petition has received 348 signatures so far.

The protest comes in light of the union’s invitation to fascist media personality Katie Hopkins, to speak at a debate about “no platforming” on Thursday. The open letter reads: “This is a woman whose hateful views, including comments directed at refugees, migrants, Jews, Muslims, the mentally ill and the LGBTQ+ community have led to her being fired from LBC Radio.”

Katie isn’t the first far-right speaker to be invited to speak – previous guests include David Irving, Nick Griffin and Tommy Robinson. The open letter continues: “These events form part of a decades long pattern of inviting proponents of hate into Oxford… The union has ignored repeated and widespread calls from Oxford students, staff and residents to withdraw invitations to such figures.”

The letter goes on to demand that the society immediately “cease hosting fascists and racists” and that videos of visits by Tommy Robinson, Steve Bannon, Marine Le Pen and Mahathir Bin Mohamad are pulled from the society’s YouTube channel.

The Oxford Union Society, not be confused with Oxford SU (the students’ union), was founded in 1823 and is one of the Britain’s oldest university unions. Like Cambridge and Durham, Oxford’s “Union Society”, is an exclusive debating platform that carries hefty membership fees. At present, it costs £278.10 to join (however it offers “access membership” at £164.80). [… 736 more words]

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You can sign the campaign’s open letter here.

“No platform” – what it means and what it doesn’t mean – Mal Content.

Still laughing at Jason Shopland

A word to the fuckwits …

of Active for Plymouth

Having been sent an expose by Plymouth activists last week, (who are nothing to do with us but the source was vouched for by comrades in Bristol) we decided to publish it in full. We have not heard from them since. The follow-up here: Chairman Shopland pisses all over himself! was composed by comrades in Dorset entirely from observations of material displayed by Jason Shopland on the public internet, specifically facebook and youtube. Shopland still clings to the idea that this is something to do with the local labour party – as if they would be seen dead posting on anarchist websites!

Shopland was incensed, but completely avoided linking to the post or even mentioning the title, Chairman Shopland pisses all over himself! as he does not want his supporters to see it. Instead, he published a screenshot of part of our post, without text, showing his family tinfoil hat picture, in which we ourselves, had pixelated the faces to make them unidentifiable.

He accuses us of putting his children at risk, and In the same frame he shows our capture of his youtube video, in which he racially slurs Roma people and travellers, excuses seig heiling by his army mates, and expresses his admiration for the Ulster Volunteer Force, who were responsible for some of the most deadly incidents of the Irish troubles. We felt it essential to show the video, in order that people could check our conclusions and judge for themselves, but did not have the means to edit the viewer.

In the top left-hand corner of the video is a clearly identifiable picture of a child!

Whatever else he may be, Shopland is as thick as two short planks.

Confused: Jason Shopland

The background noise that emboldens the mad and the bad as in Aotearoa (so-called New Zealand) is maintained by those we may characterise as fuckwits, the ones who “if they had brains might be dangerous”.

Amid the homely greengrocer’s apostrophes and haphazard capitalisations are the seeds of the next holocaust. We will not let them off the hook, ever.

Chairman Shopland pisses all over himself!

Ha ha, we thought we were done with this story on Sunday night but events have taken a turn for the hilarious. ‘Active for Plymouth’ have taken to social media threatening to sue everybody and anybody.

With the self-confidence of a drunk urinating into a gale, Jason’s made a video defending the party, we have no hesitation in reproducing it here and urge you to watch as it tells you everything you need to know about this would-be politician.

He gets off to a shaky start, clearly he hasn’t thought it through, rambling that he knows who the author is, “a friend of the lord mayor”. Among his persecutors he lists the labour party, the ‘left wing’ of Plymouth, and the local M.P. Active for Plymouth are “just normal people not right wing or mental people or anything else like that”.

He thinks secretary Popescu is entitled to be bigoted against gypsies because he’s Romanian – apparently being racist isn’t a problem if you’re a foreigner (like say, Hitler or Hirohito) so he can say what he likes about marginalised ethnicities from his home country “… happy days”.

Before we get carried away with the comedy, imagine you’ve crossed a continent to escape persecution – and Roma folk come in for some serious persecution from European Nazis – only to find one of your persecutors has made the same journey and set up shop in your new home. We are now taking steps to alert traveller communities to the potential threat in the South West.

Anti-Roma sentiment is mainstream in Romania, whose axis government deported around 26,000 Roma half of whom died from starvation, exposure or disease. Altogether over 200,000 Roma perished in the Holocaust (Porrajmos) and at least 270,000 Romanian Jews were killed or died from mistreatment.

http://www.opensocietyfoundations.org/voices/gypsies-roma-travellers-animated-history

It doesn’t matter how daft their policies are because, he mumbles, “whatever we aint gonna win anyway”.  Of UKIP, for whom he stood as a candidate, he claims he “didn’t know what they were about”,  anyway labour got to them and he left. Similarly the independents “were a bunch of arseholes” (I wonder what they think of him). Regarding the racist tweets: “that got put in the Evening Herald, and at the time supported Labour, I think they do now but I’m not gonna say that on camera”!

He goes on to explain his conspiracy theory about the N.Z. shootings before returning to the secretary’s gypsy obsession, “he doesn’t really like” them, adds another jocular “happy days” and for good measure trots out more racial stereotypes of his own to justify his traveller policy which revolves around confiscating their caravans “if that’s far right I don’t know”.

www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/the-truth-about-romanias-gypsies-not-coming-over-here-not-stealing-our-jobs

In distancing himself from Waters, he admits having discussions with her about setting up a branch of her party, then decided he “wanted nothing to do with it”, he just organised a meeting for them at a venue that cancelled “for the simple reason they don’t allow politics”, “though they do let the labour party use the place” … “and momentum”. Active for Plymouth had nothing to do with For Britain, the only similarity is the word ‘for’ – though he did nick their logo. Regarding Waters nationalism:

“that’s one of the reasons I didn’t join, I’m you know, I am pretty nationalistic”.

Shopland believes the UVF, “that is a northern Irish organisation, have more niceness about ’em than the IRA, happy days” because he was in the army. Well they were mostly on the same side. The other neo-nazis all over his facebook page are just blokes he met in the army, he doesn’t know any of them and they only seig heil at football matches to piss people off (that’s the point, Jason).

It’s possible Shopland is actually too stupid to realise he’s a fascist, but from this embarrassing performance you wouldn’t trust him to make the tea let alone take on any civic responsibility. Popescu rants that the article is being investigated by the police. Anyone who imagines they have time and resources for this sort of thing has no grasp on the realities of local administration. You could almost feel sorry for these mugs if they weren’t such spiteful bastards.

Poor Jason, he only wants to make the trains run on time and everybody’s got it in for him, he’s taking no chances with the family:

Attention: Tinfoil hat area

 

– Jo Gonmush