World News

Britain, US escalate war aid as France advances into northern Mali

By Alex Lantier, 29 January 2013

Britain has pledged to deploy troops to Mali and the US is planning a base for drones as the imperialist intervention in the Sahara escalates.

US senators unveil draconian immigration “reform”

By Bill Van Auken, 29 January 2013

A bipartisan group of eight senators introduced an “enforcement first” plan for dealing with what they termed a “broken” US immigration system.

Jordan on the brink of disaster

By Jean Shaoul, 29 January 2013

Last week’s elections in Jordan resulted in a large majority for tribal leaders, pro-monarchy loyalists and businessmen.

The human cost of Italian austerity

By Paul Bond, 29 January 2013

As the social catastrophe deepens, all parties in Italy’s general election have agreed to impose further austerity measures.

Renault and PSA Peugeot-Citroën workers in joint protest against factory closures

By Antoine Lerougetel and Pierre Mabut, 29 January 2013

Striking workers from the PSA car factory in Aulnay near Paris—which have been occupying the plant slated to be shut in 2014—joined workers at the Renault plant in Flins that is also threatened with closure

Philadelphia Theatre Company stagehands’ strike in second week

By Trent Novak, 29 January 2013

Strikers are demanding PTC management establish a health and welfare fund for each employee.

Push to dismantle public education behind plan to close another 28 Detroit schools

By Walter Gilberti, 29 January 2013

Detroit has been ravaged by a decades-long campaign of school closings, job destruction, and the unfettered spread of charter schools.

Thousands march in London against threat to close Lewisham Hospital Accident & Emergency unit

By our correspondent, 29 January 2013

Around 25,000 people marched through the South East London borough of Lewisham on Saturday to protest the threat to close the hospital’s Accident & Emergency unit and to downgrade its maternity ward.

No to all school closures! For action committees to defend public education!

By the Socialist Equality Party, 29 January 2013

The Socialist Equality Party calls on all workers, teachers, students, youth and residents of Philadelphia to form action committees to organize the defense of public education.

ISO offers sophistry in the service of the trade union bureaucracy

By Jerry White and Barry Grey, 29 January 2013

The passage of right-to-work legislation in Michigan was a debacle not just for the unions, but also for the host of liberal and pseudo-left organizations that promote these corporatist organizations.

Slovenia: Nationwide public sector strike intensifies government crisis

By Markus Salzmann, 29 January 2013

A nationwide public sector strike largely paralyzed Slovenia on Wednesday last week.

Striking Athens subway workers defy court ruling

By Robert Stevens, 24 January 2013

The strike by Athens subway workers continued into its seventh day yesterday in defiance of a court ruling declaring the work action illegal.

Israel’s elections augur deepening political instability

By Jean Shaoul, 24 January 2013

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s right-wing electoral alliance, Likud-Beiteinu, and his religious coalition partners won a much-reduced majority in Tuesday’s elections, resulting in a hung parliament.

Reports of atrocities emerge as France escalates Mali war

By Ernst Wolff, 24 January 2013

Thirteen days after starting a war in Mali, France is boosting its military presence amid reports of civilian and ethnic-based killings by French and allied forces.

Italy: Beppe Grillo’s inexorable move to the right

By Marianne Arens and Peter Schwarz, 24 January 2013

The Five-Star Movement led by comedian Beppe Grillo is regarded as the protest organisation with the best chance of success in the Italian elections.

Federal Circuit Court upholds Wisconsin anti-worker law

By Niles Williamson, 24 January 2013

A US appeals court upheld the unpopular 2011 Wisconsin Budget Repair Bill (also known as Act 10) that sparked mass protests in the spring of 2011.

Los Angeles expands school policing in wake of Newtown shooting

By Allison Smith, 24 January 2013

One aim of the police build-up in the schools is to accustom children from a very early age to the constant presence of police and an atmosphere of fear.

British MPs feign indignation over university links to warmongers

By Simon Whelan, 24 January 2013

All the major universities now have extensive ties with business and not a few with the arms industry and security services.

Imperialist powers escalate war in Mali

By Ernst Wolff, 22 January 2013

Amid the French offensive in Mali, the imperialist powers are laying out plans for a lasting neo-colonial intervention in all of Western Africa.

Lupe Fiasco kicked off US inaugural stage while performing anti-war song

By Andre Damon, 22 January 2013

The artist’s decision to perform the song echoes the sentiments of millions of people in their opposition to the policies of the Obama administration.

Christian Democrats ousted in German state election

By Lena Sokoll and Ulrich Rippert, 22 January 2013

In the state election in Lower Saxony on Sunday, the Left Party lost more than half its vote.

Philadelphia parents and teachers reject school closures

By a reporting team, 22 January 2013

Community members expressed outrage at a public forum on the plan of the Philadelphia school board to consolidate schools.

“Green-on-blue” attacks continue in Afghanistan

By Harvey Thompson, 22 January 2013

All eight deaths among British soldiers on the current tour have been the result of attacks by uniformed Afghan security forces.

Three UK retail chains collapse

By Julie Hyland, 22 January 2013

Three major UK retailers collapsed in the space of just one week, wiping out 10,000 jobs and up to 1,000 stores.

1,000 attend New York memorial for Aaron Swartz

By Clare Hurley, 22 January 2013

A memorial service for Aaron Swartz in New York City Saturday heard denunciations of the government for hounding the open-access Internet activist to his death.

French Left Front promotes war in Mali

By Kumaran Ira, 22 January 2013

France’s Left Front is supporting President François Hollande’s decision to launch a war in Mali, while issuing tactical criticisms of his policies.

Chicago records over 500 homicides in 2012

By Shane Feratu and Alexander Fangmann, 22 January 2013

Over 506 people were killed in Chicago in 2012, three in four of them youth.

France escalates Mali war amid Algerian hostage crisis

By Kumaran Ira, 18 January 2013

France has increased its troop deployment in Mali to 1,400, amid a hostage crisis after Islamist militants seized an Algerian natural gas complex to protest the war.

Ranks of US working poor grow dramatically

By Kate Randall, 18 January 2013

More than 47 million people in the US live in families where their jobs do not pay enough to lift them out of poverty.

Top US CEOs propose raising retirement age to 70

By Bryan Dyne, 18 January 2013

The CEOs of major companies in the US are demanding that the retirement age and Medicare eligibility should be raised to 70.

Fatal accidents fuel discontent with Egyptian Islamist government

By Johannes Stern, 18 January 2013

Only days before the second anniversary of the Egyptian Revolution on January 25, protesters denounce Islamist President Mursi after a series of deadly accidents.

Homelessness and hunger on the rise in San Diego, California

By Jake Dean, Richard Vargas and Toby Reese, 18 January 2013

WSWS reporters interviewed San Diego residents about poverty and hunger in the neighborhood of City Heights

UK Conservatives appoint major donor John Nash as education minister

By Jo March, 18 January 2013

The appointment of venture capitalist John Nash as British education minister hammers another nail in the coffin of public education.

Russian government intensifies witch-hunt of migrant workers

By Clara Weiss, 18 January 2013

Against a background of growing social tensions, the Russian government is stepping up its anti-immigrant measures in close collaboration with fascist groups.

The Detroit auto show: Auto execs celebrate record profits

By Jerry White, 18 January 2013

The North American International Auto Show in Detroit has put a spotlight on who has benefited—and who has not—from the supposed recovery of the auto industry.

Germany: Corrupt practices of IG Metall union, paid for by Thyssen-Krupp

By Dietmar Henning, 18 January 2013

Leading figures in the IG Metall trade union enjoyed luxury perks and travel at company expense.

Obama outlines budget-cutting agenda at press conference

By Joseph Kishore, 15 January 2013

Behind a heavy dose of demagogy, Obama made clear his determination to slash health care and retirement programs by hundreds of billions of dollars.

Open access activist dead at 26

Family charges US with role in Aaron Swartz suicide

By Kevin Reed, 15 January 2013

Aaron Swartz, the Internet pioneer, open access crusader and social justice activist, was found dead on Friday, January 11, in Brooklyn, New York from an apparent suicide.

Greek SYRIZA leader meets with German finance minister

By Christoph Dreier, 15 January 2013

On Monday, Alexis Tsipras met with the German finance minister to discuss the credit agreements between the European Union and Greece.

Leading German publisher smeared as anti-Semite

By Justus Leicht, 15 January 2013

The Simon Wiesenthal Center has branded German publicist Jakob Augstein an “anti-Semite” for criticizing the Netanyahu government in Israel.

Washington, DC legislators vote to eliminate benefits for needy families

By Nick Barrickman, 15 January 2013

The elimination of cash aid will result in a spiral of misery for many working class families in the district.

400,000 still homeless three years after Haitian earthquake

By John Marion, 15 January 2013

Three years after Haiti’s devastating earthquake, hundreds of thousands of people continue to suffer from its effects.

Exposure of sex-for-fees web site underscores UK student poverty

By Aidan Claire and Joe Mount, 15 January 2013

The Independent reports on the existence of a web site offering students up to £15,000 a year to have sex with its clients.

Burgeoning native protests shake Canadian establishment and official native leadership

By Carl Bronski, 15 January 2013

Idle No More, the grassroots native Indian movement, is continuing its campaign of protests against Canada’s Conservative government.

US life expectancy lowest among industrialized countries

By Kate Randall, 11 January 2013

Unaffordable health care, high levels of poverty and income inequality, as well as the prevalence of gun violence, are major contributing factors to the poor life expectancy rate in the US.

Obama nominates Jacob Lew, budget-cutter and ex-banker, to head Treasury

By Andre Damon, 11 January 2013

Obama’s nomination of current White House chief of staff Jacob Lew as treasury secretary underscores the administration’s commitment to slashing entitlements.

Three Kurdish nationalist activists assassinated in Paris

By Kumaran Ira, 11 January 2013

Three Kurdish nationalist activists were found early Thursday morning, shot execution-style in the Kurdistan Information Centre in Paris.

Federal judge rules New York “stop-and-frisk” policing unconstitutional

By Fred Mazelis, 11 January 2013

Stop-and-frisk has become notorious for making large numbers of New York City residents virtual prisoners in their own homes.

Danish Red-Green Alliance supports budget cuts

By Sybille Fuchs, 11 January 2013

Although the budget enacted by the Danish centre-left government pursues the same austerity policies as its conservative predecessor, the pseudo-left Red-Green Alliance has voted for it.

US Supreme Court refuses to hear lawsuit on suicide crisis facing war veterans

By Eric London, 11 January 2013

Eighteen veterans kill themselves each day, and the three branches of government have each answered with callous indifference.

South African police fire on striking farm workers

By Joshua Lumet, 11 January 2013

Confrontations between striking farm workers and South African police and private security guards have left several people wounded and some 50 arrested.

Government prepares to dissolve South London National Health Service Trust

By Paul Stuart, 11 January 2013

South London hospitals are facing devastating budget cuts, ward and service closures.

Venezuelan legislature postpones Chavez inauguration

By Bill Van Auken, 10 January 2013

The postponement of the inauguration of cancer-stricken Hugo Chavez for a fourth presidential term has ratcheted up political tensions.

US Army judge rejects motion to dismiss charges in Bradley Manning case

By Naomi Spencer, 10 January 2013

Manning was granted only a 112-day reduction in sentencing on a life term in hearings this week.

2012 was hottest year recorded in US

By Bryan Dyne, 10 January 2013

The average temperature for the past year was 1 degree Fahrenheit above the previous recorded warmest year.

Why the SEP (Germany) rejects a state ban of the neo-fascist NPD

By the Partei für Soziale Gleichheit (PSG), 10 January 2013

Last month, the German upper house of parliament agreed to take a case to the Supreme Court aiming to ban the far-right National Democratic Party (NPD).

Detroit city workers face new cuts

By Shannon Jones, 10 January 2013

Detroit Mayor Dave Bing and the city council are discussing a new round of drastic cuts, including layoffs and pay reductions.

Finucane review shows links between British intelligence and loyalist death squads in Northern Ireland

By Steve James, 10 January 2013

Finucane was killed less than a month after a Home Office minister declared, “There are in Northern Ireland a number of solicitors who are unduly sympathetic to the cause of the IRA.”

Obama names head of drone assassination program to lead CIA

By Barry Grey, 8 January 2013

In choosing John Brennan to lead the spy agency, Obama gave a clear signal that he intends to expand the illegal program of drone assassinations.

Greek government parties, opposition call joint demonstration

By Christoph Dreier, 8 January 2013

The alliance calling for a protest demonstration on January 19 against the Chrysi Avgi has no intention of conducting a serious struggle against the fascists.

UK council leaders warn of social unrest

By Robert Stevens, 8 January 2013

The leaders of three Labour Party-controlled city councils have warned that savage cuts will lead to a societal breakdown.

Corporate sponsors underwrite Obama’s inauguration extravaganza

By Eric London, 8 January 2013

Major business interests, including Microsoft, AT&T and American Airlines, are bankrolling the events surrounding President Barack Obama’s second inauguration.

California jobs report underscores deepening inequality

By Karl Eisner, 8 January 2013

The most populous state in the US, with the largest number of billionaires, is plagued by joblessness and poverty.

New York City school bus drivers may strike over job security

By Sandy English, 8 January 2013

School bus drivers in New York City, facing a threat to their jobs and pay, may walk off the job this week.

Transocean settles for $1.4 billion in criminal and civil charges

By Bryan Dyne, 8 January 2013

Transocean is being required to pay a modest fine, over the course of five years, for its part in the 2010 explosion.

Slovenian unions drop opposition to government austerity measures

By Markus Salzmann, 8 January 2013

Following a wave of protests that began at the end of November, the Slovenian trade unions are openly moving to support the right-wing program of the Janez Janša coalition government.

Obama administration blocks information request on assassination of US citizens

By Tom Carter, 7 January 2013

At the request of the Obama administration, a federal judge denied requests for government records related to targeted killings, including of US citizens.

French auto industry prepares assault on jobs, working conditions

By Pierre Mabut, 7 January 2013

Auto job cuts in 2013 threaten the 10 percent of France’s workforce employed, directly or indirectly, in the industry.

New Year’s Eve stampede kills 64 in Ivory Coast

By Kumaran Ira, 7 January 2013

At least 64 people were killed and over 200 injured in a stampede in the early morning of New Year’s Day in Abidjanl.

11,000 US teachers laid off in December

By Nick Barrickman, 7 January 2013

Last month’s firings have driven the number of workers employed by local government to their lowest levels since 2005.

Socialist Equality Party (UK) holds First National Congress

By Julie Hyland, 7 January 2013

The Socialist Equality Party (UK) held its First National Congress in Manchester, on November 17-19, 2012.

Obama signs Pentagon bill maintaining Guantanamo and military detention

By Bill Van Auken, 5 January 2013

The military funding bill allows for the indefinite military detention of American citizens without charges, while barring the shutdown of the Guantanamo Bay prison camp.

US jobs report points to continuing stagnation

By Barry Grey, 5 January 2013

Fewer than one in five unemployed workers found a job last month, and the total number of jobs remained 4 million below the peak at the start of 2008.

US bipartisan fiscal deal

Tax cuts for business, pay cuts for workers

By Patrick Martin, 5 January 2013

The New Year’s agreement between Obama and congressional Republicans comes at the expense of the working class.

European Court orders damages for CIA torture victim

By Martin Kreickenbaum, 5 January 2013

The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg has condemned the Republic of Macedonia for its role in the CIA rendition of Khaled El-Masri.

UK government attacks teachers’ pay

By Margot Miller, 5 January 2013

UK teachers face the imposition of performance-based pay.

US Congress approves measly relief package for Hurricane Sandy victims

By Fred Mazelis, 5 January 2013

A new recovery package to meet needs after Hurricane Sandy barely scratches the surface in dealing with the devastation.

Philadelphia to shut one out of every six public schools

By Trent Novak and Nick Barrickman, 5 January 2013

The Philadelphia School District announced plans to shutter 37 public schools by the end of June.

Shell Oil Arctic drilling rig runs aground

By Bryan Dyne, 4 January 2013

One of Shell Oil’s two Arctic drilling rigs—carrying approximately 140,000 gallons of diesel and 12,000 gallons of lubrication oil and hydraulic fluid—beached Monday night.

New US drone attacks in Pakistan and Yemen

By Patrick O’Connor, 4 January 2013

The latest attacks demonstrate that the drawdown of US-led occupying forces in Afghanistan will be accompanied by an expansion of illegal drone operations across the Middle East.

Judge denies Obama administration attempt to dismiss challenge to “no-fly” list

By Eric London, 4 January 2013

The administration maintains that it has the right to block individuals from flying on commercial flights or entering the country without presenting any evidence either to the targeted people or a court of law.

GM-Opel: German Left Party leader contacts US ambassador

By Dietmar Henning, 4 January 2013

The Left Party has offered its services to assist in stifling any opposition by workers to the closure of the Opel plant in Bochum.

UK: Hospitals across Greater Manchester under threat of closure

By Tony Robson, 4 January 2013

The downsizing of local hospitals is in line with plans to dismantle much of the NHS.

Homelessness and sleeping in the street on the rise in the UK

By Dennis Moore, 4 January 2013

Across the UK, significant numbers of local authorities saw rough sleeping increase by 100 percent.

Parti Québécois’ education summit—a mechanism for imposing tuition fee hikes and spending cuts

By Eric Marquis, 4 January 2013

Quebec’s trade unions and student associations are lending their support to the Parti Québécois government’s phoney “national summit” on higher education.

Burmese military escalates war in Kachin state

By John Roberts, 4 January 2013

The military has recently begun using airstrikes, along with heavy weapons, in fighting against separatist Kachin Independence Army.

Court rules California city can halt pension payments

By Thomas Gaist, 4 January 2013

A ruling last month rejected CalPERS' efforts to force San Bernardino to continue its payments to the pension fund.

As 2013 begins: A mood of anxiety in ruling circles

By Nick Beams, 3 January 2013

Almost six years after the first signs of financial crisis and more that four years after the crash of 2008, “recovery” in the global economy is more remote than ever.

French Constitutional Council strikes down Hollande’s 75 percent tax on the rich

By Kumaran Ira, 3 January 2013

The ruling exploited the fact that the PS’s tax increase was itself a political fraud.

German SPD leader Steinbrück: Candidate of the financial aristocracy

By Ulrich Rippert, 3 January 2013

The leading candidate of the German SPD, Peer Steinbrück, has complained that political leaders, in particular the German chancellor, are not paid enough.

Southampton City Council cuts expose UK unions as partners in austerity

By Zac Reed, 3 January 2013

New cuts expose the claim of the trade unions that installing Labour in May’s council elections was the answer to austerity.

Texas judge approves ban on Planned Parenthood funding

By Kate Randall, 3 January 2013

A state judge ruled that Texas can cut off funding to Planned Parenthood, forcing thousands of poor women to seek alternative state-approved doctors for annual exams, cancer screenings and contraceptives.

Merit-based scholarships in US to widen gap between high and low-income college students

By Charles Bogle, 3 January 2013

Higher education scholarships based on need are being replaced by merit-based scholarships at a time when working class and poor students are finding college education increasingly beyond their reach.

Growing poverty in Germany “politically desired”

By Dietmar Henning, 3 January 2013

While the government is following its agenda of social counterrevolution and creating Greek conditions in Germany, the country’s trade unions respond with impotent threats and reformist proposals.

Monti to lead coalition in Italian election

By Alex Lantier, 31 December 2012

Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti has announced plans to lead an electoral coalition based on a pro-austerity “Agenda Monti for Italy.”

UK High Court rejects inquiry into British role in Pakistan drone strikes

By Robert Stevens, 31 December 2012

The High Court in London has rejected a request for a judicial inquiry into the alleged role of the UK’s GCHQ spying operation in aiding drone strikes by the US in Pakistan.

Anti-Semitic outburst in the Hungarian parliament

By Markus Salzmann, 31 December 2012

The latest anti-Semitic outburst by the deputy chair of the far-right Jobbik party marks a further rightward turn in Hungarian politics.

Canada’s native peoples protest chronic poverty and government attacks

By Carl Bronski, 31 December 2012

A groundswell of protests has emerged against poverty and government measures aimed at opening up native people’s lands to capitalist resource-extraction.

Homelessness soars among US Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans

By Shannon Jones, 31 December 2012

The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) estimates that 62,619 veterans are homeless on a given night.

Fear of food scarcity hits US capital, outlying suburbs

By Nick Barrickman, 31 December 2012

In the areas surrounding Washington DC, students qualifying for free or subsidized meals face a difficult period ahead.