World News

US prison strike enters second week amid media blackout

By Matthew Taylor, 28 August 2018

Prisoners across multiple states have continued to strike against the brutal conditions under which they are incarcerated.

French government announces plan to undermine pension system

By Francis Dubois, 28 August 2018

While giving tens of billions of euros in tax cuts to the super-rich, President Macron is slashing pensions, eliminating social rights established more than 70 years ago.

Malaysian PM in China criticises “new colonialism”

By Peter Symonds, 28 August 2018

Prime Minister Mahathir has suspended key Chinese-based infrastructure projects, dealing a significant blow to China’s signature Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

The German army’s new policy doctrine: Preparing for World War III

By Johannes Stern, 28 August 2018

The grand coalition and the entire German ruling elite are planning the massive rearmament of the army in preparation for major military operations.

Anti-Venezuelan pogrom in northern Brazil highlights official promotion of the country’s far-right

By Miguel Andrade, 28 August 2018

At least 1,200 Venezuelans were chased to the border, after dozens of Brazilians torched a camp where Army soldiers were screening migrants.

UK: Northamptonshire County Council and the obliteration of local authority services provision

By Paul Bond, 28 August 2018

The council is “reviewing” how to reduce the number of children who are taken into care , cut support for those with learning disabilities and introduce fees or charges for services.

Ex-Australian prime minister to quit, leaving government in minority

By Mike Head, 28 August 2018

Turnbull’s decision underscores the fragility of the Liberal-National Coalition government, as well as the intensity of the rifts tearing it apart.

Reports point to growing social inequality in Australia

By John Harris, 28 August 2018

As elsewhere globally, the wealth of Australia’s richest has swollen over the past two decades, alongside mounting financial stress for millions of people.

More Washington state teachers strike as unions seek to contain struggle

By Alec Andersen, 28 August 2018

On Monday, teachers in Vancouver, the state’s second-largest city, voted to authorize a strike if no deal is reached by the start of school on Wednesday.

Fifty years since the Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia: Part one

Establishment of a deformed workers’ state in Czechoslovakia

By Clara Weiss, 28 August 2018

On August 20-21, 1968, tens of thousands of troops of the Warsaw Pact states invaded Czechoslovakia to crush the “Prague Spring” and stifle a nascent movement of the working class. This is the first part of a four-part series.

Australian state Labor government intervenes to prevent industrial action by Esso workers

By Terry Cook, 28 August 2018

The Victorian government is seeking to push the long-running dispute at ExxonMobil’s offshore operations back into arbitration.

Workers Struggles: The Americas

28 August 2018

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

Teachers across Washington state demand strike action and big pay increases

By Nancy Hanover, 27 August 2018

In their fight to reverse years of budget cuts, Washington teachers are giving voice to the anger and determination of educators and workers across the US.

Three killed, nine injured in Jacksonville, Florida mass shooting

By Matthew Taylor, 27 August 2018

The massacre at a video game tournament on Sunday was only the latest in a string of mass shootings in the US.

Eight children killed in house fire on Chicago’s West Side

By Jessica Goldstein, 27 August 2018

According to the fire department, if working smoke detectors had been in place, the victims would have been woken by the alarms and could have all escaped to safety.

Archbishop calls on Pope to resign over cover-up of sexual abuse

By Peter Symonds, 27 August 2018

There is absolutely nothing progressive in any of the factions of the Roman Catholic Church—a wealthy, powerful institution of the ruling classes that has been a bulwark of political reaction down through the centuries.

China-US trade talks: The divisions deepen

By Nick Beams, 27 August 2018

The Chinese Commerce Ministry stated there were “constructive and frank” talks, but gave no indication of any further discussions in the future.

Growing links between German right-wing extremists, police and state government in Saxony

By Sven Heymann, 27 August 2018

The media and establishment politicians are playing down the recent events in Dresden, or openly defending the actions of the police.

Macron’s education cuts deny admission to thousands of French university students

By Kumaran Ira, 27 August 2018

The measure aims to make universities more competitive and to prepare their privatization.

Amazon unleashes army of Twitter trolls to improve its image

By Erik Schreiber, 27 August 2018

The company's primary objective is to mitigate the damage from increasingly common exposures of the punishing conditions at its warehouses.

Reported Democratic National Committee hack was a security test

By Mike Ingram, 27 August 2018

Democrats and the news media seized on the supposed hacking attempt to bolster claims of Russian meddling in the 2016 elections and beyond.

NSA leaker Reality Winner sentenced to more than five years in prison

By Kevin Martinez, 27 August 2018

Winner is the first person to be tried by the Trump Administration under the Espionage Act, receiving the longest ever sentence for revealing classified documents.

US-backed Saudi air strikes massacre dozens of Yemeni children for second time in two weeks

By Jordan Shilton, 27 August 2018

A week before the latest massacre, CNN research revealed that the 500 pound bomb that killed 40 children on 9 August was produced by Lockheed Martin.

New Australian prime minister forms cabinet after endorsement from Washington

By James Cogan, 27 August 2018

The political turmoil is the outcome of mounting geostrategic tensions between the US and China, and immense popular disaffection with the parliamentary establishment.

India: Kerala floods death toll climbs to 445

By Sathish Simon and Deepal Jayasekera, 27 August 2018

Although water levels are receding, flood survivors have been virtually abandoned by government authorities.

Why the US ruling class mourns John McCain

By Patrick Martin, 27 August 2018

The late senator from Arizona represented a bipartisan consensus in support of militarism and the defense of corporate America.

Historic discovery of Left Opposition manuscripts from the early 1930s

By Vladimir Volkov and Clara Weiss, 27 August 2018

The discovery of hitherto unknown manuscripts of the Soviet Left Opposition is a blow to all attempts to falsify, belittle and slander the struggle of the Trotskyist movement against Stalinism.

Trump cancels secretary of state’s trip to North Korea one day after its announcement

By Ben McGrath, 25 August 2018

The US president has directly linked his pressure on North Korea with the trade war with China, exposing the fraudulent nature of the “peace talks” with Pyongyang.

“The Teamsters is not a voice for us”

UPS workers respond to Teamsters campaign of blackmail

By our reporters, 25 August 2018

UPS workers throughout the US continue to express opposition to the sellout deal that Teamsters officials and corporate management are trying to strong-arm them into ratifying.

Teachers across Washington state prepare to strike over wages and conditions

By Alec Andersen, 25 August 2018

The opposition of Washington teachers and support staff is a continuation of the teacher revolt that started at the beginning of 2018 and comes amid an upsurge of working class struggle.

Google shuts down YouTube channels in expansion of state-directed online censorship

By Kevin Reed, 25 August 2018

Google announced on Thursday that it had shut down 58 social media accounts that the company claimed were part of an Iranian government-sponsored “influence campaign.”

German government and police unite with far-right to clamp down on press freedom in Dresden

By Peter Schwarz, 25 August 2018

The grand coalition of the CDU, CSU and SPD has largely adopted the AfD’s policies, and is going out of its way to praise the right-wing extremist party.

UK foreign secretary uses US visit to support Boris Johnson replacing Theresa May as prime minister

By Robert Stevens, 25 August 2018

For the hard Brexit faction, the future of May’s premiership is understood in terms of days and weeks—with Johnson’s leadership challenge gathering pace.

Nearly 90,000 retail jobs lost in UK in 12 months

By Barry Mason, 25 August 2018

Retailers are shifting employees from secure full-time contracts to less secure ones with “less rigidity and more flexibility.”

New Trump coal regulations will kill as many as 1,400 Americans annually by 2030

By Alec Andersen, 25 August 2018

According a report by the US Environmental Protection Agency, the agency’s recent rule change will lead to 1,400 more premature deaths by 2030.

Verizon throttled emergency data during California wildfires

By Henry Allan, 25 August 2018

While many workers have lost their homes and lives, the telecommunications giant has seen the disaster as an opportunity to make some extra profits.

US service workers who rely on tips more susceptible to depression

By Alex Johnson, 25 August 2018

A recent study found that the uncertain nature of tips and irregular schedules contributes to higher rates of stress and depression among service workers.

Manila moves toward major arms purchase from Russia

By Joseph Santolan, 25 August 2018

The Pentagon, which has been systematically escalating military tensions with Russia, has not taken kindly to Washington’s former colony improving relations with Moscow.

New Zealand transport workers’ jobs and conditions under attack

By our correspondents, 25 August 2018

Rail and bus workers face a sustained assault by companies hired by the Greater Wellington Regional Council to run passenger services.

US-backed Saudi regime set to behead female activist and four others

By Bill Van Auken, 25 August 2018

The barbaric beheadings, like the slaughter of the civilian population in Yemen, are carried out with the blessings of a US government that routinely pursues its predatory policies under the phony banner of human rights.

Socialist Equality Party candidate Niles Niemuth speaks at election meeting in Brownstown, Michigan

By Tom Hall, 25 August 2018

The meeting, held in the predominantly industrial, working-class Downriver area of metro Detroit, saw a wide-ranging discussion with attendees.

One of the greatest musical figures of the 20th century

The centenary of Leonard Bernstein—Part 2

By Fred Mazelis, 25 August 2018

There was no one else who combined Bernstein’s genius as a composer, conductor, educator and pianist.

Bangladesh jute mill workers demonstrate; Paradip port workers strike in Orissa

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

25 August 2018

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

Sixth Australian prime minister ousted in 11 years

By Mike Head, 24 August 2018

A political and ideological schism has opened up in the Liberal Party, driven by the disintegration of the post-war global order.

Trump, Republicans exploit murder of Molly Tibbetts to stoke anti-immigrant racism

By Meenakshi Jagadeesan, 24 August 2018

The killing of a young Iowa woman has become a pretext for the Trump administration and its supporters to intensify attacks on immigrants.

As Trump attacks attorney general, Democrats seek to channel all opposition behind anti-Russia campaign

By Patrick Martin, 24 August 2018

Both Trump and the Democrats want to keep their raging conflict entirely within the boundaries of the official political system.

“We need a united front of auto and UPS workers”

Autoworkers warn UPS workers: Don’t trust the union

By Will Morrow, 24 August 2018

An autoworker from Toledo, Ohio told us that “if UPS workers could find a way to break away from their union, the autoworkers would follow them.”

Amazon Prime Day produces 209 percent increase in UK health and safety complaints

By Steve James, 24 August 2018

Prime Day saw strikes at Amazon warehouses in Germany and Spain and a work to rule in Poland.

Los Angeles teachers vote on strike authorization

By Dan Conway, 24 August 2018

After working without a contract for 13 months, Los Angeles teachers are taking a strike authorization vote.

Puerto Rico’s teachers hold one-day strike

By Shelley Connor, 24 August 2018

Puerto Rico teachers began the school year with a one-day protest against privatization and crumbling schools.

Seattle-area crane operators strike following rejection of sellout deal

By our reporter, 24 August 2018

Crane operators in western Washington state walked out Tuesday after voting down a deal negotiated by the operating engineers’ union that contained an inadequate wage increase.

Mayor demands New Yorkers “respect police officers”

By Isaac Finn, 24 August 2018

Following the posting of a handful of videos on social media of New York City residents cursing at police, Mayor de Blasio told New Yorkers that they “have to respect police officers.”

Former New York City jail guards union head convicted of bribery

By Josh Varlin, 24 August 2018

The conviction of former New York prison guards’ union president Norman Seabrook sheds light on a corrupt nexus of police, union and corporate-financial figures exchanging money and favors.

New Zealand Nurses Organisation lashes out at critics on social media

By Tom Peters, 24 August 2018

The union posted an inflammatory statement on Facebook aimed at intimidating opposition to its sellout of health workers.

Russian Duma presses ahead with pension reform in face of overwhelming popular opposition

By Clara Weiss, 24 August 2018

While 90 percent of the population opposes the reform, the Duma debate was dominated by its proponents.

Two migrants die as Morocco unleashes crackdown on behalf of Spain and the European Union

By Alejandro López, 24 August 2018

The catastrophe unfolding in Morocco is a direct result of the EU’s “Fortress Europe” policy and shutdown of other entry routes into Europe.

Unions stump for big business PQ in Quebec’s October election

By Félix Gauthier, 24 August 2018

The entire history of the PQ shows it to be a faithful and ruthless defender of the interests of the Quebec bourgeoisie.

The class dynamics of the stock market bull run

By Nick Beams, 24 August 2018

The record-breaking stock market rally is the outcome of the relentless class war pursued by the ruling elite after the 2008 financial crash.

How the secret service and the far-right AfD control German politics

By Peter Schwarz, 24 August 2018

Meetings between secret service chief Hans-Georg Maaßen and senior AfD members make clear that the decision to target the Socialist Equality Party (SGP) is part of a right-wing conspiracy in the state apparatus.

One of the greatest musical figures of the 20th century

The centenary of Leonard Bernstein—Part 1

By Fred Mazelis, 24 August 2018

There was no one else who combined Bernstein’s genius as a composer, conductor, educator and pianist.

Rail staff at UK rail concessions plan further strikes

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

24 August 2018

The unions are continuing to limit job actions opposing work rule changes aimed at eliminating thousands of guard positions aimed at slashing costs while compromising safety.

One year after WSWS open letter to Google

Facebook escalates censorship of left-wing, anti-war organizations

By Andre Damon, 23 August 2018

On Tuesday, Facebook announced the removal of hundreds of user accounts and pages, many of them opposing the crimes of the American, Saudi and Israeli governments in the Middle East.

US political warfare intensifies after Cohen plea, Manafort conviction

By Patrick Martin, 23 August 2018

With the conviction of Manafort and the guilty plea by Cohen, the four aides who stood closest to Trump exactly two years ago are all now convicted criminals.

Musicians’ group calls for shutdown of the German secret service

By Dietmar Henning, 23 August 2018

On Tuesday, the musicians group’ “Lebenslaute” concluded a two-day protest against the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV), as the German secret service is called.

Russian Duma presses ahead with pension reform in face of overwhelming popular opposition

By Clara Weiss, 23 August 2018

While 90 percent of the population opposes the reform, the Duma debate was dominated by its proponents.

The Teamsters/UPS conspiracy to slash workers’ health care

By Kayla Costa, 23 August 2018

The current effort of the Teamsters to push through a concessions contract follows a series of attacks on UPS workers, including a scheme adopted in 2013 to cut health care benefits.

Hundreds of detained immigrants join US national prison strike

By Trévon Austin, 23 August 2018

Detained immigrants have linked their struggle with prisoners to protest inhumane living conditions.

Australian prime minister faces ouster by extreme-right faction

By Mike Head, 23 August 2018

Whatever the immediate outcome of this turmoil, the schism tearing apart the ruling Liberal-National Coalition will worsen.

Trump backs talks with North Korea despite nuclear stalemate

By Peter Symonds, 23 August 2018

Trump’s bragging about his “good chemistry” with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un suggests that Washington hopes to align Pyongyang more closely with the US and against China.

UK Labour leader Corbyn silent on Afghanistan troop deployment

By Paul Mitchell, 23 August 2018

May’s announcement is a servile response to the demands of Trump, who has reversed his election promise to reduce US involvement in Afghanistan.

Spanish Socialist Party government’s progressive veneer cracks

By Paul Mitchell, 23 August 2018

The PSOE’s programme is austerity for the working class and militarism in the service of Spain’s geo-strategic ambitions.

Death toll rises from Greek forest fires

By John Vassilopoulos, 23 August 2018

Fire victims have demonstrated outside parliament to protest inadequate assistance from the Syriza government.

Australia: Footage reveals brutal prison murder of young Aboriginal man

By John Harris, 23 August 2018

The killing is the latest in a series of violent attacks perpetrated by prison officers.

A socialist response to the opioid crisis

By Niles Niemuth, 23 August 2018

Ending the opioid crisis that is raging throughout Michigan and across the US requires a socialist program and a frontal attack on wealth of the corporate and financial elite.

Cohen pleads guilty, Manafort convicted

Legal noose tightens around Trump White House

By Patrick Martin, 22 August 2018

The most damaging event for Trump may be Michael Cohen’s statement, as he pled guilty to eight felony counts, that in two cases he was acting at the direction of the president.

Greek Prime Minister Tsipras claims social cuts over as Syriza prepares more austerity

By Alex Lantier, 22 August 2018

Tsipras’ speech hailing the expiration of the decade-long European Union bailout scheme for Greece was a pack of lies from start to finish.

US continues to terrorize immigrants: Over 500 children still not reunited with parents

By Trévon Austin, 22 August 2018

The parents of 366 children who were separated have already been deported back to their home countries without their children, including six minors under the age of 5.

Brutal conditions in US prisons drive inmates to strike

By Matthew Taylor, 22 August 2018

Prisoners have begun a 19-day strike to protest their inhumane living conditions, slave-like work regimes and sentencing laws that strip away their constitutional rights.

Australian government near collapse as Liberal Party lurches to the extreme right

By James Cogan, 22 August 2018

The Liberal Party, along with sections of the rural-based National Party, is in the process of being refashioned into a Trump-style movement.

Chicago teen dead after police chase, family disputes official report of suicide

By Matthew Verhoven, 22 August 2018

More than 120 people marched to Mount Sinai Hospital, and to the Chicago Police Department 10th District, to demand the release of the boy’s body and footage of the events.

Argentina on the brink of financial meltdown

By Cesar Uco, 22 August 2018

Following the collapse of the Turkish lira, Argentina has undertaken mega-devaluations, threatening an economic collapse.

Fascists stage pogromist march against Nicaraguan migrants in Costa Rica

By Andrea Lobo, 22 August 2018

Fascist thugs marched on Saturday in several major parks and avenues armed with knives, bats and Molotov cocktails to attack Nicaraguan migrants.

Right-wing populist Imran Khan sworn in as Pakistan prime minister

By Sampath Perera, 22 August 2018

Khan’s promises of an “Islamic welfare state” will quickly prove to be a cruel hoax as his government imposes a fresh-round of IMF-style austerity.

Canadian ruling elite whips up anti-refugee hysteria to shift politics sharply right

By Laurent Lafrance and Roger Jordan, 22 August 2018

While posturing as a friend of refugees, the Trudeau government has deported thousands of desperate asylum-seekers trying to flee Trump’s vicious crackdown on immigrants.

Australian university union leaders quit amid escalating sellouts

By Mike Head, 22 August 2018

The NTEU is facing increasing disaffection as it assists managements to impose real wage reductions, greater casualisation and heavier workloads.

The United Auto Workers corruption scandal and the case for rank-and-file committees

By Joseph Kishore, 22 August 2018

A sentencing memorandum directly links Fiat Chrysler payouts to the UAW to the effort to “obtain benefits, concessions and advantages in the negotiations and administration of collective bargaining agreements.”

The “unmaking” of #MeToo’s Asia Argento

By David Walsh, 22 August 2018

The latest episode in the #MeToo drama unfolded earlier this week following the revelation that actress Asia Argento, one of the alleged victims of producer Harvey Weinstein, purportedly paid off a young man who accused her of sexual abuse.

Anger over sell-out pay deal at Sheffield Supertram

By Laura Tiernan, 22 August 2018

Under the new agreement, pay will reportedly rise by just £1,700 over three years for a Supertram driver and £1,600 for conductors, far below rates for drivers and conductors at Manchester Metrolink who are covered by the same union.

Sacha Baron Cohen’s “Who Is America?” on Showtime: Scattershot satire, with hits and misses

By Carlos Delgado, 22 August 2018

Cohen conducts “prank” interviews intended to ridicule and humiliate his subjects. Some of them are more deserving than others.

Teamsters blackmails UPS workers: Strike and you will lose your health insurance

By Will Morrow, 22 August 2018

The Teamsters is threatening workers that they will lose their health benefits if they strike, and that the concessions contract backed by the union is the “best we could get.”

As Greece exits bailout, EU demands further austerity

By Robert Stevens, 21 August 2018

The conclusion of the bailout is a vote of confidence from financial markets that the pseudo-left Syriza government will continue looting the people to pay off the banks.

Seventy-eight years since the assassination of Leon Trotsky

By Eric London and David North, 21 August 2018

On August 21, 1940, Leon Trotsky, the founder of the Fourth International and the co-leader of the Russian Revolution, died from wounds inflicted the day before by an assassin, the Stalinist GPU agent Ramon Mercader.

Prime minister barely survives leadership challenge in Australia

By Mike Head and James Cogan, 21 August 2018

The constant factor in the turmoil of official Australian politics has been political tensions arising from ever more volatile international geo-strategic and economic conflicts.

Studies: US life expectancy drops as mortality rises among younger adults

By Kate Randall, 21 August 2018

While many other countries saw a rebound in life expectancy in 2016, the US and the UK saw declines for two consecutive years.

Pentagon report targets China’s “expanding global influence”

By Peter Symonds, 21 August 2018

While the report focusses on China’s growing military capabilities and international reach, its build-up is dwarfed by the US military and its world-wide system of alliances and bases.

“The whole world is watching us”

Teamsters local meeting erupts in anger as union official calls UPS workers’ poverty wages “subjective”

By Norisa Diaz, 21 August 2018

Teamsters official Andy Marshall told the room of 100 UPS workers that “in a perfect world” workers would get what they wanted, but “when I was a kid, I wanted a pony.”

German federal and regional governments extend refugee camp system nationwide

By Marianne Arens, 21 August 2018

Bavarian Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann claims that the camps are “not detention facilities,” and that “no one is imprisoned,” but that is a lie.

UK: Boris Johnson gathers support for pro-Brexit Tory leadership challenge

By Robert Stevens, 21 August 2018

Johnson’s anti-burqa comments and the leadership ambitions that informed them were spurred on by effusive support from Trump and his former adviser, Steve Bannon.

Virginia’s Democratic governor seeks to whitewash abuse of immigrant youth at state detention facility

By Nick Barrickman, 21 August 2018

A report issued last week by the office of Governor Ralph Northam seeks to whitewash the criminal abuse of unaccompanied immigrant children detained in the state from 2014 through 2017.

West Virginia lower House impeaches entire state Supreme Court

By Clement Daly, 21 August 2018

The Republican Party is using corruption charges as a pretext to remove all the justices and pack the court, previously under Democratic Party control.