World News

The Ryanair strike and the resurgence of international class struggle

By Robert Stevens, 8 August 2018

The class struggle is reaching a higher stage of development, posing strategic issues before every section of the international working class.

Trump menaces the world over Iran sanctions

By Peter Symonds, 8 August 2018

Under the banner of “peace,” the US is preparing for trade war and war—not only against Iran, but against all potential rivals, including its European and Asian allies.

UK: Haringey Development Vehicle scheme scrapped, but social cleansing threat remains

By Paul Bond, 8 August 2018

The scheme would have seen the demolition of 1,400 council houses and their replacement by luxury developments and supposedly “affordable” properties.

New Zealand Nurses Organisation rams through sellout pay deal

By John Braddock and Tom Peters, 8 August 2018

The union is trying to present the agreement, which fails to address the crisis in the public health system, as a victory.

Faulty vaccines spark public outrage in China

By Gary Alvernia, 8 August 2018

The scandal is the result of cost-cutting measures aimed at boosting profits and subordination of healthcare to the capitalist system.

Australia: Telstra seeks to slash wages after announcing massive job cuts

By Terry Cook, 8 August 2018

The communications company is pushing a new enterprise agreement containing wage rises well below rapidly rising inflation.

US launches economic war on Iran, roils Mideast and world geopolitics

By Keith Jones, 7 August 2018

Trump signed an executive order Monday re-imposing sweeping US economic sanctions against Iran that were suspended in 2016 as part of the Iran nuclear deal.

Ecuador’s president issues new threat to Julian Assange

By Mike Head, 7 August 2018

Moreno’s threats to “take measures” if Assange “intervenes” in the politics of other countries is a fraudulent attempt to justify turning the journalist over to the war criminals in Washington and London.

Thousands demonstrate in Germany against far-right attacks on refugee rescue ships

By our reporters, 7 August 2018

Thousands of people demonstrated once again last weekend against the European governments’ inhumane refugee policies.

UK: Victims of state surveillance to take legal action against Undercover Policing Inquiry

By Thomas Scripps, 7 August 2018

From the outset, the inquiry did not require the police to reveal their operations and accepted as participants only some of those who already knew themselves to be victims.

Portugal: Left Bloc leader resigns over property speculation fortune

By Paul Mitchell, 7 August 2018

The whole episode surrounding Robles reveals, once again, the hypocritical self-seeking nature of the upper middle class constituency that forms the social basis of the pseudo-left.

US aggression on Korea, trade overshadows Southeast Asian meetings

By Mike Head, 7 August 2018

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo used the occasion to warn Russia, China and others against any breach of US-led sanctions that North Korea still faces.

Almost 100 confirmed dead after Indonesian earthquake

By Oscar Grenfell, 7 August 2018

Many of the flattened structures on Lombok were not earthquake resistant, and the rescue effort has been hampered by a lack of equipment.

Death toll continues to climb from Laos dam disaster

By John Harris, 7 August 2018

Survivors in Attapeu suggest that hundreds of people could have been killed when the dam collapsed late last month.

Mass strike erupts in Buenos Aires after two school workers die from gas explosion

By Andrea Lobo, 7 August 2018

While teachers saw the tragic event as evidence of the need to unite their struggles with other workers, the trade unions are seeking it to channel them behind bourgeois politics.

Mexican president-elect promises one-time electricity debt forgiveness

By Alex González, 7 August 2018

Andrés Manuel López Obrador promised limited relief to a single state while seeking to hide the appointment of a figure who helped carry out fraud in the 1988 presidential elections.

Washington allies with ISIS as great power conflict trumps “war on terror”

By Bill Van Auken, 7 August 2018

In at least three countries where US forces are engaged in combat operations, the Pentagon and its local proxies are allying themselves with ISIS and Al Qaeda in pursuit of strategic interests.

Venezuelan bus drivers protest shortages, census

Workers Struggles: the Americas

7 August 2018

Bus drivers held a demonstration in front of Venezuela’s Ministry of Transport building in Caracas, Venezuela August 3 to protest shortages of supplies and parts.

Bernie Sanders holds rallies to prop up the Democratic Party in Michigan

By Eric London, 6 August 2018

Sanders’ support for Michigan gubernatorial candidate Abdul El-Sayed is part of an operation aimed at channeling social opposition behind the Democratic Party.

Venezuelan President Maduro charges right-wing opposition backed by Colombia with supposed assassination attempt

By Alexander Fangmann, 6 August 2018

Following explosions which occurred at a military parade in the Venezuelan capital, the government claims it has arrested some of those responsible, vowing “ruthless punishment” and “no forgiveness.”

UK: Fascist Tommy Robinson’s court victory seized on by far-right

By Laura Tiernan, 6 August 2018

The response to Robinson’s release signals a further rightward lurch by the mainstream media in the direction of normalising the far-right.

As transit union continues to ignore its members’ overwhelming vote to strike

Washington, D.C. transit authority moves to privatize bus maintenance services

By Nick Barrickman, 6 August 2018

The provocative move comes amid a heated dispute regarding the privatization of public services between the transit authority and 8,000 Metro workers, members of ATU Local 689.

Zimbabwe: Violence follows disputed re-election of President Mnangagwa

By Chris Marsden, 6 August 2018

Mnangagwa, who came to power in a coup against President Robert Mugabe last November, advances himself as the strongman required to restore the order necessary for resumed investment by the major corporations.

New Zealand teachers join growing wages movement

By our reporters, 6 August 2018

In a rebuff to the union leadership, 50,000 primary school teachers voted to strike on August 15.

US immigration nightmare continues amid media blackout

By Eric London, 4 August 2018

Since the beginning of August, the New York Times opinion page has published eight opinion pieces or editorial board statements relating to allegations of Trump’s ties to Russia or the #MeToo hysteria, but none about the conditions facing immigrants.

“The UAW cannot be trusted”

Kokomo Fiat Chrysler workers kept in dark by UAW following strike vote

By Shannon Jones, 4 August 2018

The UAW local is seeking to prevent a struggle over accumulated grievances and deteriorating conditions.

Hepatitis A outbreak worsens in West Virginia, Kentucky

By Naomi Spencer, 4 August 2018

Over 1,900 people across West Virginia and Kentucky have been diagnosed with Hepatitis A in the past few months, and at least 10 people have died. Hepatitis C and HIV are likewise on the rise.

Ontario’s Tory government slashes welfare benefits, vows further cuts

By Roger Jordan, 4 August 2018

The Ford government has vowed to bring forward a plan to make welfare “sustainable” by further reducing benefits and restricting eligibility.

Appeal to neo-fascists on police scandal exposes reactionary role of Unsubmissive France

By Francis Dubois, 4 August 2018

Unsubmissive France is advancing out a populist, anti-worker policy compatible with police repression.

Australia: Youth protest racist “African gangs” campaign

By our reporters, 4 August 2018

African-Australian youth rally to denounce divisive hysteria whipped up by the political and media establishment.

SEP (Australia) holds public meetings opposing “foreign interference” laws

By our reporters, 4 August 2018

The meetings were the only events to warn of the anti-democratic implications of the legislation, and place it in the context of the preparations for war with China.

GlaxoSmithKline workers in Bangladesh protest factory closure; Philippines police arrest picketing workers outside NutriAsia

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

4 August 2018

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Facebook deletes 87 accounts linked to Brazilian right as WhatsApp restricts messaging

By Miguel Andrade, 3 August 2018

Facebook, acting in deep coordination with the state and US imperialism, aims to legitimize police-state measures against social unrest and political opposition.

Business leaders look to Labor Party after by-elections shake Australian government

By Mike Head, 3 August 2018

Confronted by growing social and political unrest, corporate executives are preparing to pursue their interests via a Labor government.

Australia: Nine-Fairfax Media merger threatens jobs

By Oscar Grenfell, 3 August 2018

The deal marks a new stage in a protracted restructuring of corporate media organisations, dictated by the financial elite.

Bangladesh: Police and government thugs attack protesting students and teachers

By Rohantha De Silva, 3 August 2018

The Awami League-led government has encouraged the ruling party’s notoriously violent youth movement to assault demonstrators.

Amid trial of former campaign chairman, Trump urges attorney general to end Russia probe “right now”

By Barry Grey, 2 August 2018

The Manafort trial is one of several recent developments pointing to an escalation by Special Counsel Mueller of his campaign against Trump.

Financial parasitism and the American oligarchy

By Patrick Martin, 2 August 2018

Behind the incessant claims of no money for urgent social needs is the drive by the top 0.1 percent to monopolize all the wealth created by the working class.

Facebook censors anti-fascist rally in Washington

By Andre Damon, 2 August 2018

The campaign to censor the internet, initially presented as a response to alleged Russian “meddling,” is increasingly targeting left-wing political viewpoints.

Teamsters union keeps 240,000 UPS workers on the job as contract expires

By Will Morrow, 2 August 2018

The union is aware that there is widespread opposition to the deal and is seeking to buy time to wear down the workers and impose a contract demanded by the company.

German government launches camp system for refugees

By Christoph Vandreier, 2 August 2018

With the inhumane camp system, the coalition government of Christian Democrats and Social Democrats is implementing the refugee policy of the far-right Alternative for Germany.

Ryanair’s mass sacking threat raises need for globally coordinated struggle of airline workers

By Steve James, 2 August 2018

The role of the unions in the airline and other industries is to isolate any struggle, impose the demands of the companies and prevent a unified fight of the entire working class.

Julian Assange’s lawyer: Australian government has a “duty” to protect him

By Mike Head, 2 August 2018

Jennifer Robinson said the WikiLeaks editor wants to exercise his right to return to Australia, provided he is protected from extradition to the US.

Trump set to hike tariff threat against China

By Nick Beams, 2 August 2018

The US is actively considering escalating proposed tariffs on an additional $200 billion worth of Chinese goods to 25 percent up from the initial level of 10 percent.

Town hall fails to ease concerns over industrial toxins found in Parchment, Michigan drinking water

By Joseph Lorenz, 2 August 2018

In a tightly controlled meeting, local and state officials sought to dispel the anger of residents who learned last week that their water has dangerous levels of PFAS chemicals.

Immigration police launch political attack on Portland mayor for backing anti-ICE protests

By Kayla Costa, 2 August 2018

Based on the absurd claim that anti-ICE protesters threatened the lives of federal immigration agents, ICE employees sent a cease and desist letter to the mayor.

Washington, D.C. metro union seeks to bury members’ strike vote

By Nick Barrickman, 2 August 2018

After an overwhelming vote by its members to strike in July, ATU Local 689, with a membership of over 8,000 public transit workers, has sought to drag out discussions between it and the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority.

British Navy evacuated Manchester bomber Salman Abedi from Libya in 2014

By Robert Stevens, 2 August 2018

It was known at top levels of the British state that Abedi had travelled on the ship, but the public, including the families of his victims, was kept in the dark for over a year.

Autoworkers speak out against UAW corruption, voice support for Kokomo Fiat Chrysler workers

By Jessica Goldstein, 2 August 2018

The World Socialist Web Site Autoworker Newsletter spoke with autoworkers in Chicago and Kokomo, Indiana about the corruption scandal which has wracked the United Auto Workers.

New Zealand nurses express frustration, anger in union broadcast

By our reporters, 2 August 2018

The union’s online event was a desperate attempt to sell the latest, widely opposed deal and shut down the rebellion among nurses.

Australian government promises changes to My Health Records following widespread opposition

By Cheryl Crisp, 2 August 2018

The “opt out” health database faces mounting public concern over official and corporate surveillance.

Resolution of the SEP (US) Fifth National Congress

Free Julian Assange!

2 August 2018

This resolution was unanimously adopted by the Socialist Equality Party Congress, held July 22–27.

Preface to the Russian edition of In Defense of Leon Trotsky

By Vladimir Volkov, 2 August 2018

Understanding the role Leon Trotsky played in the twentieth century is fundamental to the revival of the heritage of Marxism in the countries of the former Soviet Union, and to the fight to build the International Committee of the Fourth International.

Won’t You Be My Neighbor?—A new documentary about Fred Rogers and his television program

By Hiram Lee, 2 August 2018

Fifty years after the debut of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood on US public television, a new documentary explores its history and influence.

Trump plans a $100 billion tax bonus for the rich

By Niles Niemuth, 1 August 2018

The Trump administration is preparing to change the calculation of the capital gains tax so as to funnel billions more to the top 10 percent.

Protest in Munich against attacks on refugees, poverty and war

By our reporters, 1 August 2018

Despite pouring rain, tens of thousands of people demonstrated in Munich against right-wing agitation, increasing military spending, poverty and war.

France sets aside €300 billion for military in 2019-2025 budget plans

By Kumaran Ira, 1 August 2018

The massive increase in military spending underscores the fact that a fundamental aim of European austerity policies is to finance large-scale imperialist wars.

Australian governments illegally sailed refugee boats to distant reef

By Max Newman, 1 August 2018

Successive governments flouted the law to declare asylum seekers “offshore arrivals.”

Ronan Farrow’s latest #MeToo “bombshell,” directed against Leslie Moonves of CBS

By David Walsh, 1 August 2018

The New Yorker magazine has posted Farrow’s new article, detailing allegations of sexual misconduct against Leslie Moonves, the chairman, president and CEO of CBS Corporation.

Geoffrey Rush’s lawyers argue newspaper’s allegations “motivated to harm” the actor

By Richard Phillips, 1 August 2018

Rush’s amended submission documents ongoing detrimental reportage by Murdoch publications.

German right demands nuclear “weapons of mass extermination”

By Johannes Stern, 31 July 2018

The Welt am Sonntag, a leading German newspaper, has published an article demanding the creation of a nuclear arsenal.

Benalla affair destabilises Macron government in France

By Francis Dubois, 31 July 2018

The campaign by the police and parliamentary opposition to Macron is aimed at defending the police apparatus and supporting the president’s policies of militarism and austerity.

Ecuador’s president ready to allow Julian Assange to be extradited to US

By Mike Head, 31 July 2018

The Moreno government is in the process of revoking the WikiLeaks editor’s asylum and throwing him into the hands of the American authorities.

Acquittal for right-wing extremist Identitarian movement in Austrian court

By Sven Heymanns, 31 July 2018

Seventeen members of the Austrian Identitarian Movement were acquitted by the Graz District Court on all main charges in their case last Thursday.

Egypt’s military junta condemns 75 coup protesters to death

By Chris Marsden, 30 July 2018

The blood on Sisi’s hands also drenches the palms of political leaders of all the major parties in the US, Europe and other imperialist powers.

US preparing for regime change and war against Iran

By Peter Symonds, 30 July 2018

Following Trump’s belligerent threats against Iran, a national security meeting was convened in Washington to thrash out the next stage in the escalating confrontation.

US promotes Taiwanese submarine program, stoking further tensions with China

By Robert Campion, 30 July 2018

The Trump administration, backed by the Democrats and Republicans, is ramping up pressure on China through closer US involvement with Taiwan’s military.

Australian by-elections underscore deepening alienation from political establishment

By Mike Head, 30 July 2018

Despite large swings against the government, the opposition Labor Party’s vote barely rose from its historic lows.

Australia: Report reveals “Harvest Trail” exploitation of overseas workers

By Hugh Peters, 30 July 2018

The exploitative practices are the outcome of the gutting of permanent jobs by employers and successive governments, assisted by the trade unions.

Teamsters union blames opposition to sellout contract on “internet trolls”

By Will Morrow, 30 July 2018

The union’s campaign recalls the United Auto Workers’ denunciations of exposures of its 2015 sellout contract as “fake news.”

The social and political background to the forest fire disaster in Greece

By Katerina Selin, 28 July 2018

The depiction of forest fires as an inevitable natural phenomenon serves to cover up the impact of ten years of austerity ordered by the European Union, which have led to the total collapse of basic public services throughout Greece.

Russian Stalinists, pseudo-left close ranks against opposition to pension cuts

By Clara Weiss, 28 July 2018

Putin has promised since 2005 not to cut pensions and is plummeting in the polls, amid growing social anger in the working class.

Bogus anti-Semitism campaign against Corbyn and the “left” escalates

By Jean Shaoul and Chris Marsden, 28 July 2018

The attack on Corbyn and his supporters centres on measures that would criminalise criticism of the State of Israel for its persecution of the Palestinians as a form of anti-Semitism

Ontario government repudiates resettlement agreement, scapegoats refugees

By Laurent Lafrance, 28 July 2018

The Conservatives' xenophobic campaign is aimed at diverting attention away from their big business agenda and whipping up racism and chauvinism to divide the working class.

Australian Labor Party plans another pro-business, higher education restructure

By Mike Head, 28 July 2018

A decade after its “education revolution,” Labor prepares an even deeper market-driven “review” of universities and technical colleges.

Esso Australia steps up offensive against offshore workers

By Terry Cook, 28 July 2018

The ExxonMobil subsidiary is tearing up jobs, wages and working conditions in its Bass Strait gas operations.

“US autoworkers have to accept a culture of poverty”

Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne, global cost-cutter, dies

By Marcus Day, 28 July 2018

Marchionne, the Italian-born executive who collaborated with the trade unions in brutally attacking the jobs, wages, and working conditions of autoworkers throughout the world, died Wednesday.

Ocasio-Cortez, DSA seek to give “left” cover to right-wing Democratic Party

By Niles Niemuth, 28 July 2018

Supporters of Niles Niemuth, the Socialist Equality Party candidate for the US Congress from Michigan’s 12th District, are distributing this statement at appearances by DSA member and Democratic candidate Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

Ecuador refuses to give assurance of Julian Assange’s political asylum rights

By Mike Head, 27 July 2018

The Moreno government’s response is a further warning of secretive plans with the British and American authorities to hand the WikiLeaks editor over to them.

Qualcomm deal scuttled: China hits back at US in trade war

By Nick Beams, 27 July 2018

The collapse of the takeover has far-reaching implications for other high-tech companies that had been waiting for the outcome of the Qualcomm-NXP deal before proceeding with their own plans.

Australian by-elections threaten to deepen political instability

By Oscar Grenfell, 27 July 2018

The five simultaneous elections are part of a mounting crisis of the official parliamentary establishment.

Japan passes phony “work-style reform” bills

By Kurt Brown, 27 July 2018

The so-called reform bills will result in further attacks on workers, rather than improving their conditions.

The Trump-Juncker agreement: A manoeuvre in the global trade war

By Nick Beams, 26 July 2018

The threat by Washington to impose a 25 percent tariff on auto imports has not been removed, but only suspended while negotiations go ahead on broader trade relations.

Seven months after Trump’s tax cut

Corporate tax collection rate at historic low

By Gabriel Black, 26 July 2018

The trillions in deficits created by the tax cuts for the rich will be used to justify further slashes to critical social programs that millions of Americans rely on.

US and Australian ministers agree to intensify military integration against China

By Mike Head, 26 July 2018

The joint AUSMIN statement reaffirmed a “steadfast and enduring” alliance dating back to World War I.

New Zealand Nurses Organisation presents fifth sell-out pay offer

By John Braddock, 26 July 2018

The latest offer to public hospital nurses, healthcare assistants and midwives is virtually identical to offers they rejected before the July 12 nationwide strike.

Trader Joe’s manager killed by Los Angeles police in shootout

By John Burton, 26 July 2018

Melyda Corado was killed Saturday afternoon by a police officer shooting at a suspect fleeing into the store.

European Union reduces maritime rescue operations in the Mediterranean

By Martin Kreickenbaum, 26 July 2018

The halting of official rescue operations, like the sabotage of those conducted by private organisations, will lead to a massive rise in fatalities.

Corbyn outlines nationalist, anti-migrant pitch for Labour government

By Robert Stevens, 26 July 2018

Under conditions of a worsening crisis for Theresa May’s Conservative government, Corbyn sought to reassure business that Labour was the party it could trust to navigate troubled waters ahead.

UK: South Western Railway conductors to strike over Driver Only Operation

By Tom Holling, 26 July 2018

South Western Railway is Britain’s busiest commuter train network and transports more than 4 million passengers a week in and out of London Waterloo.

Pursuit of rapper Valtònyc reveals widespread censorship in Spain

By Alejandro López, 26 July 2018

The unrelenting pursuit of rapper Josep Miquel Beltrán (stage name Valtònyc) is further evidence of the growing assault on free speech in Spain and throughout Europe.

Josep Valtònyc: “What’s happening to me could happen to anyone.”

By Alejandro López, 26 July 2018

“They put me on trial for telling true, objective facts, and that is because what is happening is scary. People are not going to be able to say what they think about those who are stealing public money from us, money taken out of our wages every month. We have the right to speak out, to criticize, to get angry.”

Indian government backs mob lynchings targeting Muslims and minorities

By Pradeep Ramayake, 26 July 2018

These attacks are the result of provocations by Hindu extremist groups, supported by the BJP government.

More than 20 killed and hundreds missing from dam disaster in Laos

By John Harris, 26 July 2018

An earth-filled dam collapsed on July 24, sending around 5 billion cubic metres of water into the valley below.

Military-style immigration raids: Coming to a workplace near you

By Eric London, 26 July 2018

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced plans Tuesday for mass workplace raids and the surveillance of tens of thousands of workplaces.

Evidence of liquid water lakes under polar ice caps on Mars

By Bryan Dyne, 26 July 2018

The previous 54 years of Mars space exploration have laid the groundwork for this remarkable discovery.

Australian government boosts pro-US institutes on eve of ministerial talks in California

By Mike Head, 25 July 2018

Having just enacted draconian “foreign interference” bills, the government has now handed millions of dollars to think-tanks devoted to pro-US propaganda.

After nationwide strike: The way forward for New Zealand health workers

By the Socialist Equality Group (New Zealand), 25 July 2018

The SEG calls on health workers to break from the pro-capitalist trade unions and form rank-and-file committees to unite the working class against the Labour-led government’s austerity policies.

Extreme weather in Japan has deadly impact on the elderly

By Gary Alvernia, 25 July 2018

The elderly are consistently the most affected victims of heat waves, floods, and other disasters, pointing to the social neglect of the aged by the Japanese government.

Mounting outrage in US over conditions facing detained immigrants

By Patrick Martin, 24 July 2018

Hunger strikes and lawsuits have exposed the barbaric treatment of refugees and immigrants at detention facilities in the US.