French Election: Popular Frontists Outmanoeuvred Le Pen for Now. But the Danger Remains!

Lefitst social democrat Jean-Luc Mélenchon, Centrist bourgeois Emmanuel Macron, Far-Rightist Marine Le Pen

Joint Statement of LCFI and ClassConscious.org

President Emmanuel Macron’s gamble in calling new elections to the French National Assembly as an attempted means to counter the victory of the far right Rassemblement National – (RN) or National Rally, formerly the Front Nationale (National Front) of Marine Le Pen in the June European Election, has opened a new political situation. It was an act of desperation by Macron whose ‘centrist’ base of support has ebbed away due to his own vicious attacks on the working class over the last period, outrageously raising the pension age from 60 to 64 and ramming it through using emergency clauses in the constitution without a parliamentary vote. His warmongering in Ukraine, even earlier proposing to openly send French troops into battle against Russia, was almost designed to provoke war with Russia. Then there are his vain attempts to supress protests against the genocide in Gaza and his pandering to Zionist and French nativist Islamophobia and anti-migrant agitation. These things have completely discredited his regime and fuelled the growth of the far right in the seeming absence of a potent left movement.

So, after the shock of the Euro-Election, he dissolved the National Assembly. The first-round victory of Le Pen’s Party meant that the gamble appeared to have failed big time. But the New Popular Front (NPF), launched by the La France Insoumise (France Unbowed – LFI) party led by the left-wing social-democratic politician Jean-Luc Mélenchon, which included the Socialist Party, Communist Party and Greens, was galvanised by the rise of Le Pen’s party. It launched a campaign of tactical voting to keep Le Pen’s Party from getting a parliamentary majority. Supporters of the NPF and Macron’s Party systematically withdrew their candidates in constituencies where they came third in the first round with their bloc partner having gained second place. This class-collaborationist tactic by the half-formed NPF, itself a class collaborationist alliance, achieved a short-term tactical victory, which in some ways appeared superficially to vindicate Macron’s calling of a snap election. In terms of seats, the NPF came first, Macron’s Renaissance Party came second, with the far right in third place. In terms of seats, that is, though with nowhere near a parliamentary majority for any of them.

But in terms of votes, the RN came first more decisively in the second round than in the first. It increased its vote from 33.21% in the first round to 37.06% in the second round. Quite a considerable increase.  Which means that while the Popular Frontism of the left and Macron may by tactical voting have thwarted the RN in parliamentary terms, they strengthened Le Pen in terms of popular support. Which has not solved the problem therefore, it just postponed the decisive conflict until later. Indeed, far from being a great victory for Mélenchon either, the NPF’s vote fell from 28.21% in the first round to 25.80% in the second round. Whereas Macron’s Party gained marginally, going from 21.28% in the first round to 24.53% in the second round. 

In parliamentary terms, the result for now is deadlock. No bloc has anything like a majority. Macron, as president, is likely to be desperately trying to fit together a coalition for months. He may well not succeed, as despite the parliamentary arithmetic, actual popular votes and the social forces behind them put enormous pressure on members of the National Assembly. And if they don’t succeed, there could even be another election at some point. Le Pen could still benefit from this.

One of the main reasons for Marine Le Pen’s rise is her opposition to France’s support for NATO’s lost war against Russia in Ukraine. The French proletariat simply opposes being dragged like cannon fodder by imperialism into war. A minority of the ruling class sees the far right as a battering ram to push a more nationalist agenda at odds with the mainstream pro-EU ‘globalist’ trend that is deeply involved in the US-led proxy war in Ukraine. That wing is using verbal opposition to French involvement in Ukraine as a means to garner support from part of the working class, particularly in more provincial towns that are more conservative and less ethnically diverse than the biggest cities. As well as mobilising racist anti-migrant sentiment, which Macron had already adapted to to try to ‘disarm’ his far-right opponents by stealing their clothes.

Macron introduced new legislation limiting access to citizenship, rights to social benefits, and family reunification for migrants, as well as deportation for ‘immigrants’ if they commit crimes…. even if being convicted as an adult, they’ve been living in the country from childhood. The issue of work visas for irregular migrants has been curtailed. Overseas study visas are also restricted. It all sounds very much like the kind of laws introduced in Britain by the Tories and Brexiteers over the past decade, except that Macron is as pro-EU as any politician can be. It shows how the nationalist wing of the bourgeoisie, using the fascists as a battering ram, can induce its critics to pander to its racist-nationalist agenda. Migrants are attacked, Muslims are vilified, with the niqab banned in public spaces. In France, 50% of the prison population is Muslim, which is disproportionate as the Muslim population in France is approximately 10%..

The NPF’s circumstantial victory only postpones Le Pen’s victory because the NPF’s positions on the war in Ukraine are very close to Macron’s unpopular positions of increasing French support for Ukraine, sending more French weapons and military instructors to the war. By associating itself with imperialism in the Ukrainian War, the NPF plays the same geopolitical game as Macron, the game of pushing the proletariat politically into the arms of the “fascist-pacifist” extreme right. This is the NPF’s biggest crime at the moment. This crime, if not renounced and the opposite policy adopted and fought for by the workers parties involved, will pave the way for Le Pen’s rise to the French government. A disaster particularly for the sections of the working class with an immigrant origin.

This is at most a tactical defeat for Le Pen, but not a strategic one. The short-term tactic may even strengthen Le Pen strategically. She will be very dangerous in the 2027 Presidential Election, which may well be between her and Mélenchon, as Macron no longer inspires popular support. Mélenchon’s LFI party proposes some reasonable reforms, to restore pensions, raise wages and benefits, radically reverse austerity. It is also in theory hostile to NATO. On international questions Mélenchon is a mixed bag. On Ukraine, Mélenchon party condemned the Special Military Operation (SMO) that began in February 2022 as a so-called ‘invasion’ of Ukraine, echoing imperialist propaganda. Though he opposes the warmongering on a pacifist basis, in effect:

“’We stand for Ukraine’s restoring its territorial integrity. But it should be done politically, but not by means of military force,’ he said, adding that the idea of delivering strikes inside Russia is ‘absurd.’

https://tass.com/world/1814251?

There is no mention of the rights of the overwhelmingly Russian-speaking people of the Donbass in this. They voted against Ukraine’s ‘territorial integrity’ against a far-right regime in Kiev that began to supress their language rights in 2014. In this concept, territorial integrity overrides the democratic rights of the people who live in a state – hardly a socialist position. Though he did have a more sympathetic response to the separation of Crimea to join Russia in 2014, and he has called the Kiev regime ‘neo-Nazis’.

But at least on Syria he was quite supportive of the Russian intervention and hostile to Turkey’s intervention of the side of pro-imperialist mercenary jihadists. This may reflect an older pro-Russian position that is part of French bourgeois politics. He is rather like Jeremy Corbyn over Zionism and promises to recognize Palestine if LFI gains power. However, he is hostile to Iran – on the supposed grounds that Iran is seeking to destroy Israel in some bad way. A soft pro-Zionist position, it seems.

The Communist Party in France echo Macron’s denunciation of Russia, saying the intervention was a “criminal decision…” involving  “…aggression against the sovereignty of the people of Ukraine.” Though they make the usual calls for peace, negotiations, etc, they blame Russia for NATO’s aggressive expansion in the East. The Socialist Party is for the war drive. Its leader Faure was quoted as saying: “If we let Russia win, the risk we all run is to find ourselves in a situation where Russia will not stop.”

A joint statement of the Socialist Party and Greens is quoted by the Spectator as saying:

“‘Our line is clear: we support Ukraine, we support the delivery of arms, we support Ukraine’s membership of the European Union.”

https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/frances-political-upheaval-is-bad-news-for-ukraine/

The ‘centre-left’ Place Publique, which is also part if the NPF, campaigns for ‘aid’ to Ukraine. The predominant policy in the NPF bloc is support for the same warmongering as Macron. And by his bloc with them, Mélenchon associates his party with this. While it has to be acknowledged that many in this bloc are driven by justified anti-fascist sentiment against the RN, at the same time the warmongering policy of most in the NPF over Ukraine is fuelling the growth in popular support of the same RN.

If is highly doubtful that Mélenchon will be able to keep together his NPF for the 2027 presidential election, and that he would be able to generate the popular support to seriously thwart Le Pen even if he did. That will also be a two-round election, and it’s not clear who would be able to combat Le Pen. What is clear is that class collaboration, though it practically blocked the RN from gaining a majority and the premiership now, also caused a decline in support for itself vis-à-vis Macron in the second round. Popular fronts historically were an obstacle to revolution including in French history, and elsewhere like Chile, and the precondition for Macron leading a real struggle against Le Pen for the popular vote is a break with class collaboration, with the petit bourgeois Greens, let alone Macron’s bourgeois neoliberal party who he effectively endorsed on the second round by using tactical voting in this manner.

The precondition for serious struggle against Le Pen’s party is a break with popular frontism. In the second round of a presidential election, there is no way to evade the popular vote. But a break with popular frontism in France means a break with reformism, as within a reformist framework, the French electoral system makes popular frontism a practical temptation whenever the question of power arises. It may be that there is some kind of surge toward LFI before 2027, but if it does not break decisively with Macron’s warmongering and this strongly pro-war popular front, Mélenchon would be at best a candidate for the role of Salvador Allende.

Popular fronts, whether with the Greens or Macron’s Renaissance, are a trap for the working class. We demand that Mélenchon, the Socialist Party and the Communist Party, break with Greens, refuse any political bloc with non-working-class forces, and fight too and nail against the war in Ukraine.  The key indicator of the deceptive nature of this popular front is its support for Biden/Macron’s proxy war in Ukraine. In breaking with popular frontism, and this filthy war, they would actually undermine some of the support for the RN.

We need a party that opposes the threat of imperialist war against Russia and China, that defends migrant workers tooth and nail against the far right and Macron alike, and which fights against all the neoliberal attacks on the working class. For workers defence guards to defend victims of fascist terrorism! Down with Macron’s war in Ukraine – defend Russia, the Donbass and Crimea against Macron and his Nazi friends! Down with Le Pen, break with the bourgeoisie, no Popular Fronts – for a government of all the workers parties, LFI, SP, CP, on an anti-capitalist programme!   

Where now for the Left after the General Election?

Jeremy Corbyn, newly elected Independent MP for Islington North, lambasts Starmer at Palestine Solidarity demo on 6 July

This is the text of the presentation today at our forum on the result of the General Election on July 4th.

The presentation and extensive discussion can also be listened to as a podcast here.

The headlines of our leaflet read:

“Starmer’s Regime has NO MANDATE for its Genocidal Neoliberalism!  Independent Working-Class Forces promise Challenge to Zionist New Labour.”

This talk is based on that but expanded.

Media and conventional wisdom have it that Keir Starmer’s Labour Party won the July 2024 General Election by a ‘landslide’, with its overall majority of 174, and therefore has a strong mandate to rule, having supposedly ‘changed’ the Labour Party to make it ‘fit to govern’ by driving out the ‘unelectable’ Jeremy Corbyn and his left-wing followers.

But the ‘landslide’ is a myth. Starmer got fewer votes absolutely than Corbyn’s Labour got in in the General Election of December 2019, which Labour lost by a considerable margin in terms of seats, producing an overall majority for Johnson’s Tories of 80. The Corbyn-led Labour Party got 10.29 million votes in 2019, whereas Starmer’s tally is well below 10 million. In percentage terms, Starmer’s Labour has 33.8%, not much higher than under Corbyn in 2019 (32.1%).

This is not the product of a surge of votes for Starmer’s Labour, but a much lower turnout, only 59.9%, the lowest since 2001. Caused by the well-known similarity between the main parties – “two cheeks of the same backside” as George Galloway put it. Over 19.5 million eligible voters did not vote. It is the undemocratic ‘First Past the Post’ electoral system yet again that produced this anomaly. In this case it was fuelled by the splintering and near–disintegration of the Tories. This has nothing to with any ‘achievements’ of Keir Starmer’s leadership, which is characterised by many of the same odious neoliberal, chauvinist and Zionist vices as the Tories.

In 2017, in a General Election that took on the character of a class confrontation between the Tories led by Theresa May and a resurgent left-led Labour Party led by Corbyn, Labour got 12.87 million votes and 40% of the vote. The Tories got only slightly more, and the result was a hung parliament where the Tories were forced to rely on the very right-wing Democratic Unionists in the North of Ireland to get their measures approved in parliament.

But in 2024 Starmer won precisely because the Labour vote was NOT a class vote, by virtue of the anti-democratic electoral system and the splintering and collapse of the Tories. Reform played a similar role in screwing the Tories as the Social Democratic Party did with Labour in the 1983 election. Though that was not as extreme a manifestation as today’s result, as in 1983, Thatcher’s Tories got nearly 44% of the vote – a genuine landslide.

Since the election Sunak announced his resignation. A leadership election process for the Tories has begun. Farage’s Reform Party is hopeful of either replacing, or taking over the Tories for a more consistent, xenophobic far right type of politics. More on this later.

Starmer today actually achieved a bigger majority than Thatcher with only 33%.    Blair in 1997 got a slightly larger majority than Starmer, but he won 43.3% of the vote. That was also a genuine landslide, whereas this is not at all. Starmer has no real mandate. He will be a weak and likely vicious PM. Even before he took office, a warning sign was decision of the police to refuse to allow the Palestine Solidarity movement to march on July 6th in Parliament Square and Whitehall. The police by then knew full well that the Tories were finished and it’s obvious that they would consult and take note of the views of the Zionist clique around Starmer in deciding what would be allowed. This is a sign of weakness, not strength from Starmer. His party is likely to generate rebellions on the backbenches precisely because of that lack of a solid mandate. This will not be a stable government.

Jeremy Corbyn’s overwhelming victory in Islington North is a considerable political blow to Starmer and will damage his authority right from the start. Starmer brazenly ran a candidate who is involved in private healthcare and who spoke publicly about the ‘importance’ of healthcare privatisation. A serious threat from the new regime since its designated Health Secretary, Wes Streeting, is also an evangelist for private healthcare.

The victory of Shockat Adam over would-be cabinet minister Jonathan Ashworth in Leicester South is a wonderful blow to the Labour Zionists. Shockat made Gaza a big element of his campaign. The same is true of the victory of Ayoub Khan in Birmingham Perry Barr, who took the seat of the neocon Zionist stooge Khalid Mahmoud, who has even served on the Council of the neocon arch-Zionist Henry Jackson Society.

Iqbal Mohammed, Newly Elected Independent MP for Dewsbury and Batley, West Yorkshire

Iqbal Mohammad, is a former Labour member who quit the party over Starmer’s endorsement of Yoav Gallant’s call for the deprivation of food, fuel and water to the population of Gaza (described by Gallant as ‘human animals’). He defeated the Labour candidate, Heather Iqbal, getting 41% of the vote to her 23%. A massive victory.

Then there is the victory of Adnan Hussein in Blackburn. There is some controversy over this as Craig Murray, the long-time anti-war activist and prominent campaigner in the successful campaign to free Julian Assange, was standing in this seat with the support of the Workers Party of George Galloway. Another independent Muslim candidate withdrew in favour of Craig Murray, but Hussein refused to do so. Murray offered to toss a coin for the left candidacy with Hussein, but the latter indignantly refused. It transpired that though the vote was split, Labour was just about defeated anyway. There are accusations that Adnan Hussein might be a ‘spoiler’ for Labour and that he has connections with the New Labour Iraq war criminal Jack Straw. We can only hope that this is untrue: if it were true. it would be very damaging. A ‘spoiler’ phoney candidate was run against Andrew Feinstein in Starmer’s seat, though he was exposed as such during the campaign and completely marginalised.

Prominent Palestinian activist Leanne Mohammad came within 500 votes of defeating the arch-Zionist Wes Streeting in Ilford North. Jody McIntyre, Muslim and disabled activist and supporter of the Workers Party, almost unseated Jess Phillips, friend of Israel, in Birmingham Yardley, by only 693 votes. George Galloway, founder of the Workers Party of Britain, lost the Rochdale seat he won in February, but quite narrowly – by around 1500 votes.  He promises to take the fight to Labour on Rochdale council.

Starmer lost a lot of votes in his own seat. 17,000 of them. Andrew Feinstein came a very good second with over 7,000 votes after a very energetic campaign that attracted activists from a wide area keen to have a go at Starmer himself. It lays down a marker for the future: Stamer will not be able to consider his own seat to be ‘safe’ in future elections.

Halima Khan in Stratford and Bow for the Workers Party – former Labour whistleblower about corruption and the activities of the Zionist lobby in Newham – came a very good third, behind Labour and the Greens. She gained ten times the vote of prominent RMT activist Steve Hedley, who mistakenly stood without any real base. Faiza Shaheen, a respected economist and the overwhelming popular choice of Labour members in Chingford and Woodford Green was banned from standing for Labour, because she criticised Islamophobia in the Labour Party. She was set to defeat Iain Duncan Smith. She rightly refused to accept this, Labour imposed a stooge candidate, and a split vote ensued that allowed IDS to retain his seat. This is entirely caused by Labour Zionism and Islamophobia.

We live in a world where social democracy has failed, and imperialist capitalism is threatening human existence both by the destruction of the biosphere and through predatory, permanent imperialist wars, of which the genocide in Gaza is the most obvious and foul manifestation. We desperately need an alternative, both here and internationally.

The left needs to create a proper party to fight under in the next period. Unlike the situation in the 2000s under Blair, now as a result of the Corbyn surge in Labour in the late 20-teens and then it’s defeat, there is a large layer of ex-Labour working class people involved in this movement. Though Labour has an awful history and record as a party controlled by a pro-imperialist bureaucracy, its party loyalty element was correct. We need to recreate the party loyalty element without the pro-imperialist bureaucracy and go beyond the weaknesses of the far left in general and the Trotskyist movement in particular.  

The struggle against the far right and Farage’s semi-far-right movement, which aims to parallel the rise of Marine Le Pen, Meloni etc., is going to be a key struggle in the next period. But it is going to be inseparable from the struggle to build a new party of the working class left. Trotsky wrote in a different situation, about the counterposition of the fascists, and what the party of the working class left, the communist party, should stand for. He said that the fascists were the party of counterrevolutionary despair, whereas the communist party was the party of revolutionary hope.

We are in a somewhat different situation today. In the 1930s, there were strong, highly political working-class movements all over Europe, and fascism was a petty bourgeois and lumpen movement directly aimed at crushing them. This time round there is not a strong, highly political working-class movement. Far from it. The parallel rise of neoliberalism in the 1980s and the collapse of Stalinism caused a massive weakening of the working-class movement in the imperialist countries. A qualitative weakening, which has not yet been overcome.

This rise of fascism intersects a conflict within the imperialist bourgeoisie, because in the period since the collapse of Stalinism under the unprecedented US domination, the globalising factions of the bourgeois gained unprecedented dominance. The problem is that the imperialist bourgeoisie is a national class. Although, as Lenin pointed out, the nation-state is obsolete, and the proof of that is the world war that broke out in 1914. But the war in 1914 showed that, not only is the nation-state obsolete, but the imperialist bourgeoisie cannot abolish it. Rather, it will try to ‘abolish’ it by imperialist powers attempting to conquer each other, and the rest of the globe also. And tearing apart human civilisation in the process and threatening human existence today as today’s technology is quite capable, from climate pollution to the threat of nuclear war.

Today’s right-wing populist and fascist movements derive from a backlash within the various imperialist bourgeoisies against the ‘globalising’ liberal factions of the bourgeoisie. They are not particularly aimed at the workers movement, which is qualitatively weaker, both organisationally and politically, than it was in the 1930s. However, they are aimed at migrant workers, and the workers movement has to act as the tribune of the oppressed, and therefore has a duty to defend such workers tooth and nail. There is nothing remotely ‘progressive’ about this reassertion of the ‘national’ prerogative of the various imperialist ruling classes.

Unfortunately, the populist factions have managed to convince some sections of the working-class movement that there is something positive about them. Even some left-wing sections of the workers movement have been drawn into the orbit of the populists, at least partly. Thus, we see working class support for Brexit, so-called ‘Lexit’, the most extreme example of which is George Galloway, who openly allied with Farage during the period of the Brexit referendum.

Even now, as he advocates the most courageous defiance and attacks on the imperialist bourgeoisie over its criminal support for genocide in Palestine, and its criminal, equally genocidal (in intent) proxy war in the Donbass, he still echoes the demands of the populists over so-called ‘illegal’ migration. He embodies a contradiction. He should be both hailed and congratulated for his courage over Ukraine and Gaza and taken to task for his chauvinist politics over so-called ‘illegal’ migration. For the working-class movement, no-one is illegal. Migrants, legal and ‘illegal’, are part of the working-class and oppressed.

Galloway became particularly vulnerable to such deviations when, as Britain’s most radical MP, he was brutally beaten by a Zionist in 2014, and betrayed by every member of the House of Commons bar one (including the Labour left) who failed to publicly condemn this fascist attack. He appeared to become partially disillusioned with the left after that. But this is not a mere personal foible. There are other examples.

Similar such contradictory phenomena are so-called ’MAGA-Communism’ in the United States (would be communists who support, or at least are in the political orbit of, Donald Trump). Or the left-wing politics (over Ukraine and Gaza) of Sahra Wagenknecht – very courageous in today’s Germany, and yet similar chauvinism to Galloway – her chauvinistic politics over migration. Wagenknecht has formed her own party over this, and appears to have the same mixture of courageous anti-imperialism and chauvinism as Galloway. This has partly come about as the Ukraine war has been seen particularly as a project of the ‘globalising’ faction of the bourgeoisie, with their populist opponents (Trump, Farage, the AfD, being seen to be more dubious about it).

This needs to be properly understood by the workers movement. A key text in understanding it is a 1977 essay “On Bourgeois Class-Consciousness” the then-leading Marxist intellectual figure of the Spartacist League/US, Joseph Seymour.

I would like to see us do a public forum/discussion on that soon. It would be very useful for enhancing a Marxist understanding of populism and the roots of the current growth of the far right. And re-arming the workers movement and the left, to understand this phenomenon, to gain a sense of perspective and discover how to combat it.

For this we need to advocate a unification of the anti-neoliberal, anti-imperialist left including its sizeable ex-Labour, ex-Corbynite component. Programmatic development can only come through full debate and wide-ranging education. We need an anti-racist/anti-Zionist Socialist-Communist party with full freedom of programmatic debate. Freedom of criticism, unity in action, as in the early stages of the Russian Social-Democratic Labour Party.

Starmer’s Regime has NO MANDATE for its Genocidal Neoliberalism

Independent Working-Class Forces promise Challenge to Zionist New Labour

Top: Jeremy Corbyn, witchhunted and expelled from Labour by Starmer for belatedly defending his leadership against ‘anti-Semitism’ scam, defeated the Starmerites in his long-held Islington North seat.
Bottom: Ayoub Khan, former Labour councillor and now independent MP defeated neocon Zionist Blairite Khalid Mahmood in Birmingham Perry Barr.
 

Media and conventional wisdom have it that Keir Starmer’s Labour Party won the July 2024 General Election by a ‘landslide’, with its overall majority of 171, and therefore has a strong mandate to rule, having supposedly ‘changed’ the Labour Party to make it ‘fit to govern’ by driving out the ‘unelectable’ Jeremy Corbyn and his left-wing followers.

But the ‘landslide’ is a myth. Starmer got fewer votes than Corbyn’s Labour got in in the General Election of December 2019, which Labour lost by a considerable margin in terms of seats, producing an overall majority for Johnson’s Tories of 80. The Corbyn-led Labour Party got 10.29 million votes in 2019, whereas Starmer’s tally is well below 10 million. In percentage terms, Starmer’s Labour has 33.8%, not much higher than under Corbyn in 2019 (32.1%). This is not the product of a surge of votes for Starmer’s Labour, but a much lower turnout, only 60%, the lowest since 2001. Caused by the well-known similarity between the main parties – “two cheeks of the same backside” as George Galloway put it. Over 19.5 million eligible voters did not vote. Around 80% of the eligible electorate did not vote for this government.

It is the undemocratic ‘First Past the Post’ electoral system yet again that produced this anomaly. In this case it was fuelled by the splintering and near–disintegration of the Tories. This has nothing to with any achievements of Keir Starmer’s leadership, which is characterised by many of the same odious neoliberal, chauvinist and Zionist vices as the Tories.

In 2017, in a General Election that took on the character of a class confrontation between the Tories led by Theresa May and a resurgent left-led Labour Party led by Corbyn, Labour got 12.87 million votes and 40% of the vote. The Tories got only slightly more, and the result was a hung parliament where the Tories were forced to rely on the very right-wing Democratic Unionists in the North of Ireland to get their measures approved in parliament.

But in 2024 Starmer won precisely because the Labour vote was NOT a class vote, by virtue of the anti-democratic electoral system and the splintering and collapse of the Tories. Reform played a similar role in screwing the Tories as the Social Democratic Party did with Labour in the 1983 election. Though that was not as extreme a manifestation as today’s result, as in 1983, Thatcher’s Tories got nearly 44% of the vote – a genuine landslide. Starmer today actually achieved a bigger majority than Thatcher with only 33%.    Blair in 1997 got a slightly larger majority than Starmer, but he won 43.3% of the vote. That was also a genuine landslide, whereas this is not at all.

Starmer has no real mandate. He will be a weak and likely vicious PM. Even before he took office, a warning sign was decision of the police to refuse to allow the Palestine Solidarity movement to march on July 6th in Parliament Square and Whitehall. The police by then knew full well that the Tories were finished and it’s obvious that they would consult and take note of the views of the Zionist clique around Starmer in deciding what would be allowed. This is a sign of weakness, not strength from Starmer. His party is likely to generate rebellions on the backbenches precisely because of that lack of a solid mandate. This will not be a stable government.

Jeremy Corbyn’s overwhelming victory in Islington North is a considerable political blow to Starmer and will damage his authority right from the start. Starmer brazenly ran a candidate who is involved in private healthcare and who spoke publicly about the ‘importance’ of healthcare privatisation. A serious threat from the new regime since its designated Health Secretary, Wes Streeting, is also an evangelist for private healthcare.

The victory of Shockat Adam over would-be cabinet minister Jonathan Ashworth in Leicester South is a wonderful blow to the Labour Zionists. Shockat made Gaza a big element of his campaign. The same is true of the victory of Ayoub Khan in Birmingham Perry Barr, who took the seat of the neocon Zionist stooge Khalid Mahmoud, who has even served on the Council of the neocon arch-Zionist Henry Jackson Society. Iqbal Mohammad, a former Labour member quit the party over Starmer’s endorsement of Yoav Gallant’s call for the deprivation of food, fuel and water to the population of Gaza (described by Gallant as ‘human animals’). He defeated the Labour candidate, Heather Iqbal, getting 41% of the vote to her 23%. A massive victory.

Then there is the substantial victory of Adnan Hussein in Blackburn. There is some controversy over this as Craig Murray, the long-time anti-war activist and prominent campaigner in the successful campaign to free Julian Assange, was standing in this seat with the support of the Workers Party of George Galloway. Another independent Muslim candidate withdrew in favour of Craig Murray, but Hussein refused to do so. Murray offered to toss a coin for the left candidacy with Hussein, but the latter indignantly refused. It transpired that though the vote was split, Labour was overwhelmingly defeated anyway. There are accusations that Adnan Hussein might be a ‘spoiler’ for Labour and that he has connections with the New Labour Iraq war criminal Jack Straw. We can only hope that this is untrue: if it were true. it would be very damaging. A ‘spoiler’ phoney candidate was run against Andrew Feinstein in Starmer’s seat, though he was exposed as such during the campaign and completely marginalised.

Prominent Palestinian activist Leanne Mohammad came within 500 votes of defeating the arch-Zionist Wes Streeting in Ilford North. George Galloway, founder of the Workers Party of Britain, lost the Rochdale seat he won in February, but quite narrowly – by around 1500 votes.  He promises to take the fight to Labour on Rochdale council. Starmer lost a lot of votes in his own seat. 17,000 of them to Andrew Feinstein, who came a very good second after a very energetic campaign that attracted activists from a wide area keen to have a go at Starmer himself. It lays down a marker for the future: Starmer will not be able to consider his own seat to be ‘safe’ in future elections.

We live in a world where social democracy has failed, and imperialist capitalism is threatening human existence both by the destruction of the biosphere and through predatory, permanent imperialist wars, of which the genocide in Gaza is the most obvious and foul manifestation. We desperately need an alternative, both here and internationally.

The left needs to create a proper party to fight under in the next period. Unlike the situation in the 2000s under Blair, now as a result of the Corbyn surge in Labour in the late 20-teens and then it’s defeat, there is a large layer of ex-Labour working class people involved in this movement. Though Labour has an awful history and record as a party controlled by a pro-imperialist bureaucracy, its party loyalty element was correct. We need to recreate the party loyalty element without the pro-imperialist bureaucracy and go beyond the weaknesses of the far left in general and the Trotskyist movement in particular.  We need an anti-racist/anti-Zionist Socialist-Communist party with full freedom of programmatic debate. Freedom of criticism, unity in action, as in the early stages of the Russian Social-Democratic Labour Party.

Argentina: Raid on the Central Headquarters Of Partido Obrero (Workers’ Party)

Solidarity with Partido Obrero against the repressive escalation of the Milei regime!

There was a raid on Monday, June 3, by the federal police at the headquarters of Partido Obrero, in the Autonomous City of Buenos Aires. The raid was carried out with the alleged objective of requisitioning documentation from Editorial Rumbos and work cooperatives. In the same vein as the intimidation against Partido Obrero, a series of summonses and raids had already been carried out with a view to “auditing” the social assistance against the piquetero mass organization Polo Obrero and its leader, Eduardo Belliboni.

This occurred as part of almost 30 raids last month and a massive operation of telephone taps by the repressive apparatus against piquetero organizations. Although all this is only a part of the escalation of the repressive actions of the Milei government. The piquetero organizations that were targeted are the Polo Obrero, Peronist Barrios de Pie and the Front of Organizations in Struggle (FOL).

All this as part of the persecution of leftist parties and social movements under the pretext of diverting resources linked to the Empower Work plans by the piquetero organizations themselves. In a context where the austerity of the Milei government cancels social programs including assistance to soup kitchens, this repressive policy against leftist parties and social movements aims to prevent the masses from organizing themselves in the face of the austerity policy in the social aid plans, using hunger as a form of social control.

The strategic repressive escalation has been going on since the beginning of Milei’s government. Already in December 2023, the Minister of Security Patricia Bulrrich advanced the repressive protocol in order to prevent political and social organization and seek to criminalize those who demonstrate. Today there is currently a repressive siege against the workers of the province of Misiones. As part of Milei’s policies of persecution, we must also include pressure against opposition journalism such as the censorship manoeuvres against Santiago Cuneo.

Argentine fascism is already resorting to the techniques of war against the poor that Zionist fascism is using in Gaza. While the Argentine population suffers hunger and looks for food among the garbage, it was discovered that the “Ministry of Human Capital” retained more than five thousand tons of food in its warehouses in Tucumán until it spoiled.

The regime is waging a combined campaign of extinguishing the social functions of the state, strangling mass organizations, and political repression against social movements and their left-wing political parties.

This continuous repressive escalation is the only way for Milei’s government to impose its brutal austerity against the masses. In this sense, the raid against the headquarters of Partido Obrero is part of the persecution by Milei’s fascist government against the piquetero organizations, it is part of the attempt to reinforce repressive policies in the face of the growth of popular struggles against hunger and fascism, thus making use of the repressive apparatus and judicialization.

No to the criminalization of left-wing parties and social movements!

Solidarity with the Workers’ Party in the face of Milei’s fascist government!

Defence of the right to organise of workers!

An attack on one is an attack on all!

Milei, who wants to starve the people, hands off the social fighters!

Presentation and discussion: General Election: No Vote to Zionist New Labour – Support Left Independents/Anti-Zionists

(Top) Jeremy Corbyn,  Leanne Mohammad, (Below) George Galloway,  Andrew  Feinstein
 

The presentation and discussion at our forum this afternoon can also be heard here as a podcast

There is no major party standing in this General Election deserving of the support of class-conscious workers, socialists, anti-racists and fighters against oppression.

The Tories and Liberal Democrats are the open parties of the ruling class, speaking abstractly.

Being more concrete, we have all experienced the brutal austerity and increasingly decrepit corruption of this gang of looters of our social gains, public services, the Health service, the rivers polluted with raw sewage, the racist thuggery and sadism … I could go on.

First the Tory-Liberal coalition for 5 years, then the Tories alone. The rise of Jeremy Corbyn was a reaction from the workers movement to Tory-Lib Dem austerity attacks.

But today’s Labour Party was forged through a massive, reactionary driving out of the left that led the party from 2015-20 under Jeremy Corbyn.

This was the one period since the miners strike when millions of working-class people thought they had a chance of winning something back, through the election of a left-wing politician with a record of fighting for workers, of opposing privatisation and attacks on the poor, of standing up to bigoty and racism, and mobilisation against imperialist wars.

The current Labour leadership, as the whole country knows, buried that. They preferred the Tories. They engineered Johnson’s victory in 2019. Labour is standing in this election as a Tory second XI as they continue to stamp on the Labour left.

Some see the Greens as a potential repository of socialist possibilities. In Germany, the Greens are part of a coalition with the Social Democratic Party (SPD); they are deeply implicated in support for both Israel and Nazi Ukraine.

In this country sole Green MP Caroline Lucas, has been involved in ‘cross-party’ witchhunting critics of Zionism in academia, as shown in the case of David Miller.

They cannot be trusted, their environmentalism is bourgeois and depends on ‘Green’ capitalism, not socialist planning, which is the only thing that can solve the problem of human-induced climate change. We need a working-class alternative, not a petty bourgeois party that joins in with capitalist reaction.

But the main topic of this forum is Labour.

On October 8th Israeli ‘defence’ minister Yoav Gallant made his Hitlerian speech saying that the inhabitants of Gaza are “human animals” who should be allowed “no electricity, no food, no water, no gas”.

When Starmer was interviewed shortly after, he defended Israel’s “right” to carry out these genocidal measures.

This led to a major exodus of outraged members, particularly from Muslim working-class communities, and numerous defections of councillors.

The Labour leadership is dominated by genocidal Zionists.

The scam ‘anti-Semitism’ campaign against the left during the Corbyn period, was driven by the realisation by those forces that a genocide of the Palestinian people was in the offing, and politics had to be purged of sympathy for Palestinian rights.

But they have a huge problem now. This election takes place in the middle of that very genocide, that Starmer gave his support to

However much he tries to wriggle and evade now, he, and his supporters, are on the rack.

The Starmer leadership is a reversion to the politics of Tony Blair and Gordon Brown and their neoliberal New Labour governments, which followed in the footsteps of Thatcher and Major.

That government, like the Tories, demanded austerity to make the working class pay for the world financial crisis of the late noughties.

The neoliberal right, which is interpenetrated with the Zionists as a matter both of history and current political reality, was horrified by the near victory of Labour under Jeremy Corbyn in the 2017 election.

It appears that only the sabotage of the Labour right –the funnelling of campaign funds to safe Labour seats inhabited by neoliberals and Zionists – deprived Corbyn’s Labour of being the largest party.

The shocked expressions of ‘Labour Friends of Israel’ like Jess Phillips and Stephen Kinnock when May lost her majority, said it all.

They worked overtime to sabotage Corbyn’s leadership and bring Boris Johnson to power in the 2019 election. For the bourgeois/Zionist right-wing, Johnson was the lesser evil to Corbyn.

When the anti-Semitism scam was ineffective (as was shown in 2017), Starmer manipulated the issue of Brexit to sabotage Labour.

So, the idea that Starmer and his followers are somehow a lesser evil to the Tories today is at odds with reality. They have more in common with the Tories than they do with the labour movement.

This election gives the opportunity to the left to begin to clarify that and split this bourgeois workers party along class lines. We are seeing the small beginnings of that.

There is already a substantial layer of independent socialist councillors around the country, many of whom successfully defended their seats in the council elections on May 4th.

Starmer has the party’s internal life sewn up, dissent is ruthlessly punished, and internal party elections are shamelessly rigged.

Then in February Starmer colluded with Speaker Lindsay Hoyle, another “Labour Friend of Israel”.

Hoyle broke with an element of parliamentary procedure that has a democratic content. The rule being that on a party’s “Opposition Day”, that party is allowed to put a motion, and only the government is allowed to put amendments to it.

The purpose of this is to ensure that all opposition parties get to have their say; they have the right to have their motions voted on by the house, yes or no.

Hoyle allowed Labour to put an amendment to the SNP’s motion calling for a permanent ceasefire in Gaza.

Predictably, the Labour Party was able to outvote the SNP.  So, the SNP motion was amended to remove its most important demands, for a ceasefire and condemnation of “collective punishment” of Palestinian civilians in this genocide.

Which were never voted on in counter-position to the government,

Labour was afraid that if they were forced to vote on a ceasefire, they would split. But voting for something with ambiguous wording that was deliberately unclear, would not cause a problem.

So, the SNP’s right to a yes-no vote/confrontation against the government on Gaza was buried.

If the Labour Party had been forced to vote on the SNP motion versus the government, the whips would have demanded that Labour either vote with the government or abstain. Many would have rebelled.

This manoeuvre was to stop that happening.

This showed that Starmer is not just a threat to Labour members’ democratic rights, but of all who criticise Zionism.

It is comparable, in some ways, to Boris Johnson’s illegal manoeuvre to prorogue parliament in the Summer of 2019. This was a kind of coup.

And Starmer/Hoyle carried out their own mini-parliamentary coup against the SNP and any MP in their own party or any other who wanted to vote to demand a permanent ceasefire.

This is an attack on an element of parliamentarism that actually has a democratic content.

Numerous independent socialists around the country are standing against Labour, as well as several left-of-labour political organisations.

The most prominent individual is Jeremy Corbyn himself.

His exclusion from Labour, when only a few years earlier he was the leader of a massive movement against austerity, racism and imperialist war, symbolises why socialists should not be supporting the Starmer-led Labour Party.

Hundreds of thousands of people loyal to Corbyn’s leadership have been impatiently waiting for him to defy Starmer in the election.

Now he has done so, he deserves the support of all in society who have a basic working-class consciousness, along with those fighting oppression and imperialist war, crucially the attempted genocide in Gaza.

But it should be a critical support, as many of Corbyn’s own actions when he was leader, did not help to resist the reactionaries who sought to overthrow him.

Corbyn showed chronic weakness in Labour with the position that he explicitly formulated later in the witchhunt period, that both Zionists and anti-Zionists should work together in Labour.

Jon Lansman of Momentum, who admitted to being a left Zionist, was among his most influential supporters. He played a key role in undermining his leadership.

Even more to the point, Corbyn’s adherence to the view that Zionists and anti-Zionists should work together, meant that when the Zionists came after outspoken opponents of Zionist racism in the party, Corbyn turned the other cheek, which meant throwing them under the bus.

Corbyn’s appointee Jenny Formby, as General Secretary, proved more efficient at purging the pro-Palestinian left in the guise of fighting ‘anti-Semitism’, than her right-wing predecessor McNicol.

So that was disastrous weakness.

He is still at it – in the ‘Collective’ Umbrella he has initiated for this election, and his ‘Peace and Justice’ initiative, ‘left’ Zionists: Justin and Clare Schlosberg, are active.

Justin Schlossberg denounced David Miller, the militant, victimised anti-Zionist professor formerly of Bristol University, as a ‘psyop’.

David Miller who defeated Bristol University at an industrial tribunal, establishing for the first time that anti-Zionist views are a protected belief under British law.

The types are a danger to the left and Palestine supporters. It is terrible to be allying oneself with such people, particularly in these terrible circumstances. It is wrong in principle in any case.

Zionism is a key driver of racism in the Labour Party.

Diane Abbot, the first black woman MP, was deprived of the Labour whip based on phoney allegations of anti-Semitism, driven by Zionists.  Par for the course.

Abbott and her supporters appear to have forced Starmer to reinstate her as a Labour candidate. It is clear that Starmer wanted rid of her, and that she refused to go, and had the clout to insist, and defeat him.

This is because the Labour Party feared to take on black working-class communities in London, and in Britain generally, who still have considerable regard for Diane Abbott.

She is one of the few Labour candidates who deserve a vote in this election. For defying and defeating Starmer.

What happened to Faiza Shaheen is the converse of this. She was outrageously dropped as a candidate in Chingford/Woodford Green on the basis of feeble Zionist smears only a few days before the national candidate selection deadline

A highly regarded left-wing economist of Muslim family background, she was supposed to be crushed by this.

But not so, she denounced the ‘hierarchy of racism’ in Labour.

What this actually means is that Labour has a racial hierarchy, that privileges Jewish and white supremacists over the black and Asian communities.

She is now standing as an independent against the Tory Iain Duncan Smith and the Starmer stooge.

The quintessence of this racial hierarchy is Labour’s parachuting of Luke Akehurst into a safe Labour seat in North Durham.

He is a white supremacist, who as Diane Abbott has noted, had tried repeatedly to get rid of her from her Hackney seat.

He is also an ardent Zionist, but he is not actually Jewish. There is a famous photo of him wearing a T-Shirt bearing the caption “Zionist Shitlord”.

 It appears that his Zionist fervour is driven by his hatred of non-whites – he has deleted thousands of his tweets and social media posts recently to hide this.

One reportedly referred to Palestinians as ‘rats’.  Akehurst is basically a Zionist-Nazi and should be treated as one.

There is a proud working-class history in Durham, as symbolised by the Durham Miners’ Gala. They should ensure his type are better acquainted with the pavement.

George Galloway of the Workers Party is seeking re-election in Rochdale after his recent by-election victory.

There are also some independent candidates standing in Birmingham who are closely associated with GG and the Workers Party.

Jody McIntyre in Yardley against Jess Philipps, and Ahmed Yakoob in Ladywood against Shabana Mahmood.

They are making Gaza a big issue, but not just Gaza. Labour’s more general racism, neoliberalism and contempt for the working class, and particularly the British Asian working class, is crucial here.

Former UK Ambassador and Julian Assange defender Craig Murray is standing for the Workers Party in Blackburn (he may win also).

Chris Williamson, the former very left-wing Labour MP and Deputy Leader of the Workers Party is standing in Derby South, adjacent to his previous Derby North seat.

Former Labour whistleblower (about Zionist lobbying and witchhunts), Halima Khan, is planning to stand in Stratford and Bow, East London, also under the banner of the Workers Party.

George Galloway is excellent on Palestine and Ukraine and has a long and creditable anti-imperialist record.

But in the past decade he has shown softness on right-populism, and some of his followers follow in the same vein and to be treated with caution.

There are political debates to be had with the Workers Party about social conservatism and backwardness on questions involving immigration and oppression, including sexual oppression of various types.

However, Galloway’s views cannot be taken to represent the final word about the Workers Party and its politics. There are signs of it being a more inclusive project than that. 

Galloway himself has appeared to welcome the idea of prominent figures with different views joining with him. If that were to happen, then it could become a real vehicle for political advance.

Williamson, Craig Murray and Halima Khan appear to give substance to that.

Possibly the most prominent independent socialist campaign in London, barring Corbyn, is Andrew Feinstein in Holborn and St Pancras constituency, against Starmer himself.

He is a Jewish former member of the South African Parliament for the African National Congress. He is an outspoken defender of the Palestinians and supporter of South Africa’s genocide case against Israel at the ICJ.

He was selected by OCISA (Organise Corbyn-Inspired Socialist Alliance), a left-Corbynite campaign group set up a couple of years ago with the aim of standing a socialist candidate against Keir Starmer.

Labour sees that as threatening politically, which is perhaps why a ‘left’-talking independent candidate, who appears to have family connections with the Labour right wing, is running in that constituency seemingly to split the left-wing opposition to Starmer.

Leanne Mohammad, a British-Palestinian Palestine solidarity activist, is challenging Wes Streeting is in Ilford North. Streeting can be considered an Israeli agent – and he evangelises for private healthcare. His defeat would be a major blow to the Zionists and neoliberals.

There are also the celebrated Liverpool Community Independents, who are standing Sam Gorst against arch-witchhunter Maria Eagle in Liverpool Garston.

They are now standing under the banner of Transform, another new leftist party that is partly the product of ex-Corbynites, notably the very youthful Breakthrough Party, which merged with the remnants of Left Unity as well as the Liverpool Independents last year.

Transform appears heterogenous; it has ‘socialist’ elements who are flatly on the wrong side in Ukraine, mixed with others with better views.

TUSC, which is basically a front for the Socialist Party, is standing in this election.

Its left-reformist sectarian caricature of Marxism makes it appear bureaucratic and sterile, but it does stand for some basic working class demands for trade unions, against privatisation, imperialist wars etc., so it is worthy of critical support in principle.

Though its habit of standing against other leftists gratuitously is part of what renders it sterile.

It does appear they might have a candidate standing under their ticket from the Spartacist League. That is an interesting anomaly. And also critically supportable.

The new Revolutionary Communist Party, formerly the labour entrist Socialist Appeal, that also has its origins in Militant is also standing on politics that appear critically supportable. It appears more political and open to debate.

What is necessary above all is a perspective that seeks to unite all of these fragmented initiatives in a new, democratically organised party, where proper political debates are possible, and thereby unity in action, so that political and programmatic development in a revolutionary direction comes onto the agenda.

Julian Assange’s Partial Legal Victory

On 20th May, at the Court of Appeal in London, Julian Assange won a significant legal victory over the sinister forces in the United States that seek to throw him into a US torture establishment for the rest of his life. He won the right to a full appeal on the grounds that his right to a defence against the (flagrantly unconstitutional) charges under the US Espionage Act, would be denied in the US because of discrimination against him due to nationality. This would deprive him of elementary protection of his right to free speech as a journalist under the First Amendment of the US Constitution. The previous court (very reluctantly) asked for assurances from the US that Julian would not be executed (which were given) and that he would be given First Amendment protection (which the US attempted to dissemble). The court rejected the latter US evasion and granted him the right to a full appeal on this point.

 Previous courts outrageously dismissed and much more substantial indictments against the US, including blatant perjury, and threats (and plots!) to have Julian murdered, but this is the issue they could not evade.  This is a significant shift, as in the upcoming appeal, his rights under the European Convention of Human Rights, which applies much more widely, come into play.

There has now been a shift against the US-instigated lynch law that the British ruling class and judiciary have engaged in for most of the last decade and a half, denying him basic rights and attempting to isolate him with a fraudulent rape allegation in Sweden, for which there was never enough evidence to bring charges. However, the smear of ‘rapist’ was successfully used to undercut the necessary solidarity movement. Not only was Julian smeared in the bourgeois, especially liberal, press and politics; much of even the  ‘far left’ originally refused to defend him because of their own pandering to identity politics. Prominent exceptions were George Galloway and Craig Murray, who deserve congratulations for their tenacity and solidarity. 

That hysteria has dissipated at it has become clear to many of those people that Julian’s real ‘crimes’ were to exposure mass murder committed by US imperialism. His campaign has gained momentum, he has gained support from the Australian government and even some of the liberal media who smeared, stabbed and trashed him have been prevailed upon to pay lip service to defending his rights. This is not the end of the persecution of Julian Assange, but it does seem like it may be the beginning of the end, and he must have a good chance of winning his appeal in the Autumn. Everyone must keep up the pressure.

The ICC, Western Imperialism and hypocritical double standards

By Kalliste Hill

The ICC, in the person of Karim Khan, finally announced after 7 months they will ask for the arrest of 2 Israeli ministers, Prime Minister Netanyahu and Defence Minister Galant and 3 Hamas leaders, Sinwar, Al-Masri and Hanayeh, after the conspicuous leaks and hysterical outbursts of the Zionist lobby in the US, UK and Israel at the very thought that they might be treated like “African leaders and thugs like Putin”.

However, underneath the hysteria, the mafia-like threats from US congressmen against the ICC prosecutor to sanction not only him, his family and the members of the entire ICC office, including the Judges, lies yet another unbalanced, disingenuous litany of false allegations against the real targets of this action, the Palestinian leadership, while reserving the spotlight of public opinion and victim-waving for the Israelis.

The long list of “crimes” against the Palestinian targets include the chief negotiator as well as the prime Palestinian target marked out assassination by Netanyahu and the Israeli UN ambassador in public and on the floor of the UN.

It’s almost as if the ICC, far from any real intention to actually drag Netanyahu into the dock, is actually reinforcing the ludicrous and demonstrably false allegations made by Israel against Hamas, which excuses they’ve used to commit genocide against the Palestinian people for the past 76 years. They are reciting yet again the reasons why Israel will continue to pursue its policy of political assassinations and fomenting regime change for those who already support the Zionist cause while creating more panic and fear amongst those who see the existence of the state of Israel, even anapartheid, ethno-fascist state, as it is at the moment, as existential, when the reality is that it should go the way of White South Africa, to be replaced by a secular state based on equality and social justice.

After all, the US has already passed laws that ensure no US citizen, or now any proxy under their protection, will be protected from prosecution by the ICC in perpetuity. What do Netanyahu and Galant really have to fear? Whereas all Palestinians, and especially their political leaders have every reason to know that they, their family members and all who work with them, are under sentence of death at the hands of the Zionists who rule Israel, and control our Empire of Lies.

Britain joining the War in Ukraine

By Kalliste Hill

British troops (with faces pixillated) photographed in Ukraine

While the US has brought about regime change in Ukraine with the Maidan coup in 2014, installing a thinly disguised Neo-Nazi government of Banderaites and corrupt politicians to loot its resources, sell its land and saddle it with massive debts thanks to dodgy IMF loans, the UK has been heavily involved in the training of their military, building up their army to become the 2nd largest in would-be NATO Europe (after Turkey).

The UK involvement has involved everything from bringing Ukrainian commanders for “special training” in the UK, Nazi tattoos on show much to the embarrassment of the British media, to the existence of special advisors, in reality SAS and SBS groups to supervise “on the ground” the attacks on first Snake Island and then the Kerch Bridge.

This is the real reason our British press has been so obsessed with these two “targets” over the past 2 years, despite their lack of strategic importance, because they are great PR and distract the British public from the grim reality of millions of dead and wounded Ukrainians.

 This is a war Ukraine can’t win, never could win, but that the UK along with the US persuaded it would be worth it because if they “weakened Russia”, then they would be rewarded with EU and NATO membership, despite the fact that they didn’t qualify, and never would. Now the EU and NATO are so weak, they’ll probably become members at some point simply because both are on their last legs, completely ruined by this unwinnable war along with the rest of Europe and the UK.

Even when offered more than reasonable terms of peace by Russia, the US sent UK PM Johnson to persuade Zelensky to continue the war, while the US funded more billions of dollars of “loans” Ukraine can never repay to stay in the war, knowing they would be defeated, but determined they should keep on fighting until Biden is re-elected.

The tragedy is that Ukraine could never win “the war” and the US knew that. Russia has more and better weapons than NATO, can produce more and better weapons than NATO in the future, even if Europe and the UK move to a “war economy”, and now has bigger, better trained armed forces than NATO, although it didn’t before the US provoked this war in 2014. In fact Russia was reducing its armed forces in order to focus more on rebuilding its economy after US sanctions and building up international relationships with other victims of US hegemonic imperialism.

Sanctions have now bankrupted the West, and BRICS will make US hegemony irrelevant, but the UK’s real humiliation has come with Sunak’s admission that the UK won’t “directly fight Russia”, because it exposes the fact that we already have been secretly fighting Russia for a decade, in an unwinnable war that has exposed our complete inability to do anything but start what we cannot finish.

Communist Fight Series 2, issue 4 is Out Now!

This issue centres on the General Election, and the Gaza genocide, and also refers to the Ukraine war.

The lead article is an extensive and detailed analysis of the various parties and trends standing in the General Election. It concretely makes it clear why the Labour Party is not supportable – the current leadership is one that has waged a class war against all elements within it who aspire to stand up for workers and the oppressed. The Zionism of this leadership was always genocidal, and it is pretty clear in hindsight that there was plenty of conscious understanding of this among the various ‘Friends of Israel’ and ‘Jewish Labour Movement’ witchhunters who targeted the Corbyn movement.

Starmer’s clear endorsement of the use of starvation/dehydration and deprivation of power as a weapon of genocide after the break out from the Gaza concentration camp on 7th October, caused a major crisis in the Labour Party, with many defections, including of sitting councillors, who often retained their seats in the local elections in May. Now there is a layer of socialist-inclined independents standing all over the country against Labour – the most prominent being Jeremy Corbyn himself, as well as at least four national left-wing organisations, most prominently the Workers Party of George Galloway. The main article gives life to the concept of critical support, elaborating in some depth the strengths and weaknesses of the various trends and putting forward a perspective of what is necessary to create a cohesive and democratic socialist alternative to bankrupt neoliberal social democracy.

The article on the back cover also contains useful material on the election, in the form of an account of a public debate between two left-wing trends, with the CPGB-Weekly Worker advocating votes for Starmer’s genocidal leadership in the election, and the Spartacist League opposing it. The rightward motion of the CPGB-WW is evident here; during the whole Blairite period they were opponents of the left hustling votes for the pro-privatisation, warmongering Blairites. But now that Starmer has taken that a stage further and publicly endorsed openly genocidal actions, they suddenly click their heels and denounce those hundreds of thousands of class-conscious militants who abhor voting for Starmer as ‘third period’-ists, “Ohlerites” and similar nonsense. “Left” Islamophobia and softness on Zionism are what is driving their drift into the Starmer camp. Their opponents in the debate, the Spartacists, have ironically some similar flaws, but on the issue being debated: for or against voting for Starmers openly righwing Labour, they are correct.

Another article, an edited transcript of the presentation at the forum we held on the genocide at the beginning of May, gives a lot more historical and contemporary detail about the roots of the genocide, as well as its relationship with the decline of US hegemony and the rise of resistance to that hegemony from a block of the global South with the ex-workers states of Russia and China.

As well as these substantial articles, we have a number of short pieces on the war in Ukraine, the arrest warrants that are in train from the ICC against Israeli leaders, and also an update on the recent partial legal victory of Julian Assange at the Court of Appeal on May 20. And we have a brief piece by our Argentinian comrades on the 9 May General Strike against the fascist-inclined President of Argentina, Javier Milei, and the ferocious attacks he is carrying out against the working class of that country as part of a US-funded counteroffensive of recolonisation in Latin America.

A Vote for Starmer’s Labour is a vote for Zionist Genocide and Nazism in Ukraine!

Vote for independent socialists/Workers Party/Transform/TUSC/RCP!

For a Unified Democratic Anti-Imperialist Working-Class Party – No Zionists Allowed!

Rafah: Zionist massacre of refugees in tents with deadly airstrikes, May 26. This resulted in Palestinian newborns being decapitated, highlighting the barbarism of the Zionists, who lied about Hamas doing that on 7th Oct, precisely to incite this genocide.
 

In this general election, there is no major party deserving of the support, even critically, of class-conscious workers, socialists, anti-racists and fighters against oppression. The Tories and Liberal Democrats are the open parties of the ruling class, and it is elementary that no class-conscious element could even consider supporting them for a moment. In the last decade and a half working class people have had all out war conducted against them and their living standards by these parties – first in coalition, and then since 2015 the Tories alone. But today’s Labour Party, led by Kier Starmer, was forged through a massive, reactionary hammering of the left that led the Labour Party from 2015-20 under Jeremy Corbyn, that Labour Party itself is standing in this election as the continuity of the Tories, and garnering support from dissident Tories even as it continues to crush the Labour left.Not only that, but on the overarching, litmus test issue of elementary political decency and even basic humanity, it has been clear for several years that the Starmer leadership supports genocidal Israel, root and branch, and is dominated by genocidal Zionists. The bloody massacre in Rafah, the culmination of more than seven months of genocidal slaughter in Gaza, only underlines what Starmer stands for. The entire scam ‘anti-Semitism’ campaign that was waged by the neoliberal right wing against the left during the Corbyn period, was driven by the palpable realisation by those forces that a genocide of the Palestinian people was in the offing, and politics had to purged as much as possible of any reservoirs of support and sympathy for Palestinian rights. The Corbyn movement was seen as a huge threat and reservoir of such sympathy, dangerous to the Zionist project. It was always genocidal in its ultimate logic.

The Starmer leadership is a reversion, and then more, to the politics of Tony Blair and Gordon Brown and the 1997-2010 neoliberal New Labour governments, which followed in the footsteps of Thatcher/Major’s earlier Tory governments and engaged in massive privatisation and repression of trade unions, supposedly to revive British capitalism’s economic fortunes after the major crisis of the 1970s. That government, like the Tories, demanded austerity to make the working class pay for the world financial crisis of the late noughties, a crisis of speculation, massive financial corruption and forms of profit that amounted to extortion and theft. Austerity was a device to make the working class pay for the bailout of the banks that prevented the collapse of the system that this crisis threatened.

New Labour and Austerity vs Corbynism

Keir Starmer and Jeremy Corbyn

In the past decade and a half, we have seen major austerity attacks on workers’ living standards, on the NHS and other public services that constitute a key part of the ‘social wage’ of the working class. Social security benefits have been massively reduced and restricted, and disabled workers demonised by the profiteering billionaire media. The NHS has been plundered and massively slimmed down. This process began under the Tory-Liberal coalition of the early 2010s and has further considerably increased under the increasingly squalid and openly corrupt Tory-populist regimes in Britain since 2019. Under their tutelage, the NHS is now in a deliberately-engineered major crisis, and is visibly failing most of those who need it in some way.  This is the logic of neoliberalism, and the Labour right will not tolerate any serious opposition to it – they agree with the Tories on the fundamentals and are viscerally hostile to the aims of the labour movement.

Though the Tories actually implemented austerity since 2010, as the New Labour government had run out of steam through its own attacks on the working class at home and its imperialist wars abroad, notably in Iraq, the Labour Party throughout this period, except under Corbyn, accepted austerity and the Tory cuts, merely whinging under Ed Miliband’s soft left leadership that the Tories were going “too far, too fast” with such attacks. The neoliberal right-wing fought back by all means at their disposal against the break with austerity, imperialist wars abroad, and support for Zionism, that Corbyn’s leadership represented, from the moment it became clear in mid-2015 that Corbyn had the mass support to win the Labour leadership.

 That was what drove the demolition job on Corbyn’s leadership though the ‘anti-Semitism’ scam. The entire neoliberal right in Labour was horrified by the near victory of Labour under Jeremy Corbyn in the 2017 General Election, when Theresa May’s majority was destroyed. It appears that only the sabotage of the Labour right – in particularly the funnelling of campaign funds away from key marginals to safe Labour seats inhabited by Labour Zionists – deprived Labour of being the largest party in that election. But the televised, visible shock on the faces of neoliberal Labour ‘friends of Israel’ like Jess Phillips and Stephen Kinnock when May was predicted, by “Exit Polls”, to lose her majority, was a widely remarked upon public spectacle.

In the two years between the 2017 and 2019 elections, Starmer’s cynical manipulation of the issue of a second Brexit referendum aimed at securing a victory for the corrupt Trumpian thug Boris Johnson in 2019, which it duly did. This was another key element of their counter-attack, in addition to the ‘anti-Semitism’ scam, which did not work particularly well in 2017, and needed reinforcement. Starmer never cared particularly about Brexit either way, as revealed by his flag-shagging and pandering to Brexit voting xenophobes ever since. But he revealed his key motivation clearly when standing for Labour leader in 2020 after the destruction of Corbyn’s leadership, when he said that he supported Zionism ‘without qualification’.

Corbyn showed chronic weakness in confronting the ‘anti-Semitism’ scam/witchhunt, repeatedly throwing his most outspoken supporters to the Zionist wolves, and also suicidally allowed Starmer control of Brexit policy after 2017. The actions of Starmer as the standard-bearer of the neoliberal/Zionist thugs ever since, show the character of Starmer’s regime very clearly. He has massively purged the Labour Party of anyone showing any sympathy for Palestine. And within the workers movement, basic decency for Palestine generally coincides with basic socialist views on many other things, like opposition to privatisation, attacks on the NHS, anti-union repression, racism more generally.

Starmer and Israel’s Genocide

Whereas support for Zionism reflects socially and politically reactionary views more generally – Israel is now the cause celebre of the bulk of the far right, with very few dissenters. What Starmer has been doing, systematically for the entire period of his leadership, is using phoney allegations of ‘anti-Semitism’ to purge socialist-inclined people generally from Labour. His whole strategy in this election is not to appeal to the working class on any kind of class basis whatsoever, but to prove that Labour has ‘changed’ from the days of Corbyn’s leadership when it did push basic working class demands, that it is in no way habitable for socialists, but very habitable for Tories alienated by the open corruption of Sunak, Truss, Johnson et all, but still hostile to the working class movement.

Starmer welcomes into Labour’s ranks right-wing Tory defectors – overtly xenophobic, racist types like Natalie Elphicke, while at the same time Jeremy Corbyn and Diane Abbot were deprived of the Labour whip for years based on phoney accusations of ‘anti-Semitism’. Where he is coming from on this is shown by his attitude when the genocidal Zionist assault on Gaza began after the October 7th Hamas-led Gaza prison break and raid on the IDF nearby. On October 8th the racist monster Israeli ‘defence’ minister Yoav Gallant, now facing indictment from the International Criminal Court for, among other things, ‘extermination’ of the Palestinian people, made his Hitlerian speech saying that the inhabitants of Gaza are “human animals” who should be allowed “no electricity, no food, no water, no gas”. For the Zionists, Palestinian civilians of all ages should be starved to death and die of dehydration, even babies in incubators should be left to die, as well as being bombed to death. All these things have happened many times over. Yet when Starmer the genocidaire (a.k.a. “Der Stűrmer”) was interviewed shortly after Gallant’s speech by Nick Ferrari on LBC, he defended Israel’s “right” to carry out these genocidal measures against the Palestinian people.

This openly genocidal affirmation by Starmer detonated a major explosion in Labour’s base and ranks and led to a major exodus of outraged members, particularly from Muslim-derived working-class communities, and numerous defections of councillors from Labour all over the country. There is already a substantial layer of independent socialist councillors around the country, many of whom successfully defended their seats in the council elections on May 4th. Starmer has the party’s internal life sewn up, dissent is ruthlessly punished, and internal party elections are shamelessly rigged by the central apparatus overseen by the ultra-corrupt and anti-democratic General Secretary David Evans, who long held that there was too much democracy in Labour, which is why Starmer appointed him in the first place. So, there is no reason for Labour dissenters not to go public, attack the corrupt Zionist vermin, and seek to punish them electorally.

This was further exacerbated by a major parliamentary scandal in February when the Scottish National Party put a parliamentary motion demanding an immediate ceasefire in Gaza and an end to the ‘collective punishment’ of the Palestinian people. A permanent ceasefire in Gaza would signify an Israeli defeat, which is why the Starmer leadership is utterly opposed to it, no matter what ‘adjustments’ it makes to its rhetoric for cosmetic purposes. So Starmer colluded with the speaker of the House of Commons, Hoyle, who like Starmer is a “Labour Friend of Israel” to allow, contrary to elementary parliamentary procedure, a Labour amendment to gut the SNP motion of its most important demands.

This is contrary to democracy and parliamentary procedure; only the government is traditionally allowed to try to amend opposition parties’ motions like this. The purpose being to ensure that larger opposition parties cannot squash smaller ones, and that the motions of all opposition parties are allowed to be voted for and against in contention with the views of the government.  It was a major scandal and an abuse of democracy comparable to Boris Johnson’s unlawful proroguing of parliament in August 2019, and showed that Starmer the Zionist was quite prepared to abuse basic democratic norms not only within the Labour Party, but also in wider politics, in a manner usually associated with the far right. It is another reason why it is not in the interest of the working-class movement to allow the genocidaire Starmer to become Prime Minister. We should not be in the business of electing ‘Labour’ leaders who are so zealous about attacking our own democratic rights that even some Tories complain that they have gone too far!

Starmer the Red, or Pink Tory

All of these are clear indications that it is not in the interests of the working class to elect Starmer’s Labour Party. Labour has backpeddled on virtually every residual policy that temporarily survived from the Corbyn period, or which the Starmerites introduced as temporary sops to trade unions, environmental protesters, etc. Starmer stood for Labour leader in 2020 on a programme that superficially appeared to be ‘Corbynism without Corbyn’ but it was clear to many on the left that he was simply lying to get power. Once he gained it these promises were renounced one-by-one and critics were at risk of being purged, as many were. Even the far right Tory Suella Braverman has been able to criticise Labour from the left, after belatedly coming out against the government’s barbaric two-child cap on Child Benefit, which Starmer is now in favour of keeping. Starmer’s Labour has recently had conflicts about its junking of promises to spend £28 billion per year on green investments, and now about its supposed ‘New Deal for Workers’ – all of these things derived from the Corbyn period and are being junked and/or watered down.

Sharon Graham, the General Secretary of UNITE, who is a fake ‘left’ talking character as cynical as Starmer, has been complaining about this backtracking, on questions like abolition of zero-hours contracts, and then has been claiming to have secured some concessions. But the cynical instrumentalisation of such promises and eagerness to junk them to please right-wing voters is what Starmer is all about. Starmer has even attacked successful Labour figures marginally to his left over such things, criticising the Major of London, Sadiq Khan, for not retreating on the ULEZ clean air measures because right-wing London Tories objected. Khan, who is a feeble soft left and usually servile to the right wing and Zionists, in this case ignored Starmer and won a substantially increased majority in the May 4th Mayoral Election in London.

It looks likely that Labour will win the general election, not because of any appeal it is putting forward to workers as a class – it is shunning that as detailed above – but simply because of the advanced state of decay and near-collapse of the Tories. It is not in the interests of the labour movement to have this anti-democratic, second-string Tory leadership gain a substantial overall majority in the General Election. Ideally, what we want is a hung parliament with no overall Zionist-Labour or Tory majority and a significant number of left-wing independents and left-wing socialists to get elected and lay the basis for the emergence of a new, genuine working-class party.

As detailed, there are numerous independents around the country standing against Labour, as well as several left-of-labour political organisations standing. The most prominent is Jeremy Corbyn himself, the former Labour leader, who has been Labour MP for Islington North since 1983. His exclusion from Labour, when he was the leader of a massive popular movement against austerity, racism and imperialist war, symbolises why Marxists should not be supporting the Starmerites in the election. There are hundreds of thousands of people loyal to Corbyn’s leadership who have been impatiently waiting for Corbyn to take the final step and defy Starmer in the election. Diane Abbot, the first black woman MP to be elected, who has represented Hackney North and Stoke Newington since 1987, is in a similar position, deprived of the Labour whip on the basis of phoney allegations of anti-Semitism, made by genocidaires. She is very unlikely to get the whip back, and hopefully will feel compelled to follow Corbyn on this, though this is not completely clear.

Huge numbers of former Corbyn supporters, likely hundreds of thousands, are so angered by the cynicism of these exclusions that they would not countenance a vote for the ‘Red Tory’ Starmer. That is the stance, and it is thoroughly justified, of the most advanced and class-conscious layer of the British working- class movement. The layer that is dedicated to Labour irrespective of whether it stands for full-blooded leftist social democracy or warmed-over Toryism is not the advanced layer of the working class, not its vanguard, but its rearguard. Those who vote Labour knowing that its prospective Health Secretary, Wes Streeting, is not only an arch-Zionist but also an evangel of private healthcare companies, can hardly be said to be sterling defenders of the NHS, for instance. The job of Marxists is to keep step with the most advanced layers of the working class, not to tail after the consciousness of the most backward types, who Starmer is actively seeking to win with his flag-shagging and pandering to Tories.

One important flaw that exists among some ex-Corbynites is a softness on the Green Party as a potential repository of socialist possibilities, or at least a potential protest vote. But the Greens are not a working-class party and are not to be trusted. In Germany, where their Green Party is part of a coalition with the Social Democratic Party (SPD) they are deeply implicated in support for both Israel and Nazi Ukraine. In this country, the sole Green MP up to now, Caroline Lucas, has actually been involved with New Labour and Zionists from other parties in witchhunting critics of Zionism in academia. Lucas signed a cross-party letter calling on Bristol University to discipline David Miller for criticising Jewish student organisation for supressing free speech on Palestine. He was duly sacked, and Miller took the University to an industrial tribunal earlier this year and won his case. It set an important legal precedent, as the judgement stated that Miller’s anti-Zionist views were a protected philosophical belief. No thanks to the Greens and Caroline Lucas! They cannot be trusted, their environmentalism is bourgeois and depends on ‘Green’ capitalism, not socialist planning, which is the only thing that can potentially solve the problem of human-induced climate change. We need a working-class alternative, not an alternative petty bourgeois party that joins in with capitalist reaction at the first opportunity.

Challenges to Zionist New Labour: Critical support.

Leanne Mohammad

It is therefore good that Wes Streeting is being challenged in Ilford North, both for his Zionism – more than almost anyone else in Labour, he can be considered virtually an Israeli agent – and for his private healthcare evangelising. His challenger is Leanne Mohammad, a British-Palestinian Palestine solidarity activist, who has the support of a broader network of former Labour activists in the North/East London environs, such as Redbridge Community Action Group and Newham Independents, who are also intending to stand candidates against Labour in Stratford, and East Ham, against well-known Blairites. Former Labour whistleblower about Zionist lobbying and witchhunts, Halima Khan, is planning to stand in Stratford and Bow, which also sounds supportable.

But possibly the most prominent independent socialist campaign, apart from Corbyn’s, in London is that of Andrew Feinstein in Holborn and St Pancras constituency, where the sitting MP is Keir Starmer himself. Feinstein is a Jewish former member of the South African Parliament for the African National Congress, who resigned decades ago in a conflict with former South African President Thabo Mbeki about shady arms deals. He is an outspoken defender of the Palestinians, a supporter of South Africa’s genocide case against Israel at the ICJ, a critic of Starmer’s right wing politics and was a strong supporter of Jeremy Corbyn. He was selected by OCISA (Organise Corbyn-Inspired Socialist Alliance), a left-Corbynite campaign group set up a couple of years ago with the aim of standing a socialist candidate against Keir Starmer in the General Election. He has lived in that constituency for over 20 years.  Informally he was the favourite for much of that period, though he was always vague about whether he would actually stand, as he retained Labour membership. But now that the election is upon us, he has publicly resigned from Labour and taken up his position. His candidacy is certainly supportable, but critically, as like so many of the prominent lefts, when questioned about October 7th, he echoes an element of imperialist propaganda, and condemns the ‘atrocities’ committed by Hamas as a preamble to a fierce attack on Israel for genocide.

Andrew Feinstein

It is by no means clear that Hamas did commit atrocities. The stories of ’40 beheaded babies’ and mass rape have been shown to be fabrications by the Zionists to justify their genocidal programme. Out of the 1,143 who Israel say were killed on October 7th, a breakout from the world’s biggest concentration camp, over 371 of them were state and military personnel and thereby legitimate targets of military resistance. It is well known by now that many of the civilian deaths were killed by Israel’s own armed forces, because of the Hannibal Directive, a standard Israeli practice where they kill their own side rather than allow them to be taken prisoner by an enemy. There is also the fact that once Hamas had broken through the Gaza fence, numerous other angry prisoners (all Gaza inhabitants are prisoners and have been since Israel began its siege in 2007) broke through and some vented their undisciplined rage on Israelis indiscriminately. They were not Hamas people. Hamas’ objective was to seize hostages to be traded for the many Palestinians Israel has been arbitrarily holding, torturing and abusing for many years.  As Scott Ritter pointed out, the most that Hamas can be accused of is failing to leave a rear-guard to protect their operation, and the gaps in the fence, from angry, riotous elements not under their discipline. But large-scale killings by Hamas make no sense if the objective was to take prisoners for later exchange. The ‘atrocity’ stories against Hamas make no sense and are just pro-genocide propaganda.

Of course, moralists can condemn the taking of hostages itself as an ‘atrocity’. But in the context of decades of Israeli racist ‘administrative detention’ of many thousands of Palestinians without charges, who are often subjected to torture and murder, hostage exchange is a rational policy from the point of view of the workers movement. We can point out that the 1871 Paris Commune, the first workers government in history, took hostages when its people were seized by reaction and threatened with death. As Wikipedia points out:

“In April, the Commune had arrested some 200 clergy to serve as hostages against reprisals from the Versailles government, and to use in possible prisoner exchanges. In particular, leaders of the Commune hoped to be able to exchange the archbishop of Paris, Georges Darboy, for Louis Auguste Blanqui, but this offer was rebuffed by Adolphe Thiers, president of the Third Republic. Versailles troops entered the city on 21 May, and by 24 May had retaken much of the city. Théophile Ferré signed an order of execution for six of the hostages at la Roquette Prison, specifically including the archbishop; they were executed by firing squad.”

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Massacre_in_the_Rue_Haxo

To try to save the lives of fighters against oppression, in circumstances of civil war and conflict, taking hostages is a valid tactic of those fighting against oppression.

Andrew Feinstein is part of a bloc of left candidates called ‘Collective’ which also includes Corbyn. The bloc seems to be an outgrowth of Corbyn’s Peace and Justice project, which is a Corbyn-centred protest movement that overlaps Labour, which eschewed the idea of founding a new party.  One of the two directors of this bloc, Justin Schlosberg, describes himself as a ‘progressive Zionist’. His wife, Chloe Schlosberg, is the director of Peace and Justice. There is a distinct element of déjà vu over this, as Momentum, the ‘grass-roots’ ginger-group that was founded to support Corbyn during his period as leader, was also led by a ‘progressive Zionist’ -so-called, Jon Lansman, who was involved in throwing  many anti-Zionist activists under the bus and out of the party during Corbyn’s leadership. True to form, Justin Schlosberg recently denounced anti-Zionist stalwart David Miller as a “psyop” against the left. The root causes of this phenomenon are in the politics of Corbyn, who at the height of the witchhunt explicitly spelled out his conception that both Zionists and anti-Zionists should be regarded as legitimate trends within Labour. This was pathetic then, as political Zionism in its logic was always a genocidal movement, with ethnic cleansing, the ante-chamber of genocide, build into its very foundation. In today’s circumstances, right in the middle of the Zionist holocaust in Gaza, it is incredibly dangerous and simply grotesque.

This does go a long way to explaining why Corbyn has taken so long to finally declare his independent candidacy and has been so insipid in his opposition to Starmer. He needs to be challenged on this, to break with these apologists for a genocidal movement. Schlosberg’s activities, just as were Lansman’s, are a trap for the left, and need to be expunged. In this regard, Corbyn’s campaign does include elements of working class politics, and should be given critical support against Starmer, with the criticism sharply directed against this political idiocy. Leftist elements like Andrew Feinstein should be on guard against the likes of Schlosberg trying to exploit their campaign and undermine its opposition to Zionism. We need no Zionists or ‘friends of Israel’ in any new left party.

Such an approach should also be applied to other left social-democratic candidates, from TUSC, Transform, the newly formed Revolutionary Communist Party led by Alan Woods (formerly the Labour deep entrist Socialist Appeal), and other working-class candidates who are standing against Labour and opposing their ‘own’ imperialism’s support for genocidal Israel. Similar critical support is principled. 

Craig Murray

There are left-wing candidates across the North of England as well, notably Workers Party MP George Galloway in Rochdale, who is seeking re-election after his recent by-election victory, former UK Ambassador and strong Julian Assange defender Craig Murray in Blackburn (who may well win also), Chris Williamson, the former very left-wing Labour MP and Deputy Leader of the Workers Party, who is standing in Derby South, adjacent to his previous Derby North Seat when he was a Labour MP.  There are also the celebrated Liverpool Community Independents, who are standing Sam Gorst against arch-witchhunter Maria Eagle in the new Liverpool Garston constituency.

They are now standing under the banner of Transform, another new leftist party that is partly the product of ex-Corbynites, notably the very youthful Breakthrough Party, which merged with the remnants of Left Unity as well as the Liverpool Independents last year. That party is very heterogenous and contains some elements who are unfortunately backward and profoundly wrong on Ukraine, supporting the wrong side, implicitly supporting the imperialists’ proxy war in the name of fighting a (non-existent) ‘Russian imperialism’. Support for Ukraine is a far right, imperialist project, whatever some muddleheaded liberal lefts might delude themselves. So, it would be wise to keep a careful eye on who local candidates are regarding Transform and judge each one carefully before deciding whether to vote for them.

George Galloway’s Workers Party is very heterogeneous and though GG has huge authority within it, it cannot be taken to be simply a reflection of his views. Galloway is a contradictory figure whose political views on the Middle East and also Ukraine have put him firmly on the right side of the class line on some major issues. He is a sterling supporter of the Palestinians who has led major initiatives to oppose imperialist crimes, such as the Mariam Appeal for aid to Iraq under genocidal imperialist sanctions, and Viva Palestina aid convoys after Israel’s first major Gaza bombing massacre, Operation Cast Lead in 2009. His detractors on these questions are generally Zionist scumbags.

But, particularly since he was brutally beaten by a Zionist thug for his views in August 2014, and was then betrayed by the bulk of the ‘democratic’ body politic and the social-democratic left, who refused to publicly condemn the attack in deference to the Zionist lobby, he has become partially demoralised and alienated from the left, expressing contradictory softness and sympathy with aspects of right-wing populism, Trumpism, Brexit and the like. Some of those he has associated himself with have been very right-wing indeed. His attempt to launch a Russia-defencist anti-war movement over Ukraine,      No2NATONo2War, was crippled by his major mistake in trying to draw in the slippery crypto-fascist David Clews of Unity News Network as a public spokesman, which completely undercut its potential to make inroads into the labour movement. It was a gift to the social-imperialist supporters of Nazi Ukraine. The Workers Policy has a self-image as being partly nationalist (its cog-wheel roundel emblem in red, white and blue echoes the insignia of the Royal Air Force in WWII).

George Galloway

As well as good positions on many things involving opposing imperialist war, the WP is not necessarily so good on matters concerning immigration. Galloway is personally socially conservative on questions regarding abortion, and though his record on defending gay rights is historically very good, recently he has become more conservative at least in some of his personal musings. And on climate change, some of the WP’s criticisms of Net Zero appear to dovetail with climate change denial. It is a good idea to consider a vote for the Workers Party in this context – they are intending to stand in many constituencies around the country, but such a vote should be extremely critical as it is quite a contradictory and heterogenous organisation. Some right-wing anti-immigrant types have reportedly crept in in some places, so like with Transform, it is wise to examine such candidates carefully to see what their real politics are before blithely putting a cross on a ballot paper.

For a Genuine Workers Party!

All these initiatives are very partial, and some of them are very seriously flawed. But they are where the working class movement is at after several decades of defeats, and what ultimately proved to be a false dawn under Corbyn’s Labour leadership, although a fruitful one that has radicalised a considerable layer of left social democratic militants, who are capable of providing the forces to create a new, genuine workers party in Britain, if a correct tactical approach can be made to them.

What is necessary above all is a perspective that seeks to unite all of these fragmented initiatives in a new, democratically-organised party, where proper political debates are possible, and thereby unity in action, so that political and programmatic development in a revolutionary direction comes onto the agenda. Of course, such a party will have no room for ‘Friends of Israel’ and the like.  Our work in the Socialist Labour Network is aimed at making that relatively small but influential organisation into a vehicle to promote such democratic unification of the anti-neoliberal, anti-Starmer left. We need an organisation that can act as a principled unifying force, and the Consistent Democrats themselves are too small, too weak and too new to become such a body on our own. We hope that the SLN can play an important role as a ‘cog’ in bringing such a party into being. It is unlikely to just happen ‘like that’ during the General Election, but in the aftermath, when we are likely faced with a weak, but very right-wing pink-Tory government, but with a working-class base that is likely to be at odds with it from the start, the opportunities to make progress in that direction should be considerably greater.