Scottish Communists - website of the Communist Party
Speaker: Dr Alan MacKinnon
Filmed in March 2012 - at a time when Western NATO nations & media were focusing on challenging certain countries, whilst West hypocritically turned blind eyes to protect the region's most corrupt & dictatorial governments which were cracking down on Arab Spring local movements - simply because they were deemed to be pro-NATO already. Dr MacKinnon focuses his attention on Egypt - where many of his 2012 predictions have seemingly come to pass.
What are the forces at large in the region? What does this mean for the near future of people in the Middle east, and are we seeing an era of our Western nations engaging in yet more protracted war & bloodshed?
Thursday 28 May at 7pm
Speaker: Kenny Coyle
Former CPB International Secretary just returned from China
in the Unity Office, 72 Waterloo St Glasgow
(Next to Admiral Bar, 2 minutes from Central Station).
Friday 29 May 7pm
The AGM of the PPPS takes place at the STUC at 7 p.m. on Friday 29 May (doors open from 6.30 p.m.)
Shares can be bought on the night - and if you have reports of new readers won, and how they were won, this would provide an important contribution to the general discussion.
Saturday 20th June 2015 @12pm - The Demostration for Everyone Against Austerity
You may have noted from the media, or social media, that on Friday 15th May, the STUC announced that it would be throwing its weight behind, and effectively becoming the key organiser of, a rally in George Square on Saturday 20th June 2015 against austerity.
The event, now entitled, “Scotland United Against Austerity”, will take place on the same day as a number of rallies throughout the UK, organised by the People’s Assembly. A particularly large event is anticipated in London. The event in Glasgow will take the form of a rally and will be taken forward in co-operation with the People’s Assembly in Scotland and the main organisations involved in that coalition. The event explicitly aims to involve a range of organisations opposed to austerity, including those who took positions for Yes and No during the recent referendum. A meeting was held with the People’s Assembly Scotland on Saturday morning and they are supportive of the strategy outlined. Equally, discussions will be taken forward with a range of other civil and campaigning organisations in the days to come.
This decision to hold the rally was taken quickly in the context of fast moving events towards the end of last week. The secretariat was able to confer with a number of, but not all, affiliates in coming to this decision. It was felt that the trade union movement in Scotland was best placed to take a leadership role in the anti-Tory, anti-austerity consensus and swift action was required to ensure that this was the case.
The main focus of the rally will, of course, be to unite opposition to austerity and provide a show of strength in opposition to the Tory Government. You will also have noted the immediate announcement by David Cameron of proposed legislation to further attack trade union freedom. Therefore, it has been agreed that trade union freedom and the need to join a union and get active as clear statement of opposition to austerity will be a key message for the event.
As of Saturday morning a Facebook event has been running https://www.facebook.com/events/1432486387055800/, over 2000 people responded in the first 24 hours to indicate attendance. We expect the outline details of the event to go live on our websites in the next 24 hours. Further updates will be provided in due course.
Clearly, it is of immense importance that the plurality of the anti-austerity consensus in Scotland is represented on 20th June. An organised trade union presence and trade union banners are particularly important. I would, therefore, be grateful if you would communicate the details of this event through your networks, on websites and through social media.
Grahame Smith, General Secretary STUC
7 reasons to demonstrate on 20 June
Reason 1 - The government plans £12 billion in welfare cuts targeting the poorest in society.
Reason 2 - The new Tory disabilities minister opposed protecting benefits for disabled children and cancer patients
Reason 3 - Michael Gove has been appointed justice secretary. In 1999, when he worked for the Times, he called for hanging to be brought back as a punishment. He's also attempting to scrap the Human Rights Act.
Reason 4 - Cameron is announcing new plans to target 'extremists' giving the government powers to target anyone they think is undermining 'democracy'. This policy will be used to attack the Muslim community, and how long will it be before anti-austerity protesters get targeted too?
Reason 5 - The new equalities secretary voted against gay marriage
Reason 6 - The new business secretary wants to make it harder for trade unions to take strike action.
Reason 7 - The government plans to end social housing as we know it.
5 more reasons to march with the People's Assemby on 20 June
1. It’s the first nationwide response to the election
2. It’s the first mass response
3. How big it is will shape all that comes after
4. If its big there will be more local resistance
5. It's a defence or democratic rights
For more visit: http://www.thepeoplesassembly.org.uk/5_more_reasons
The Communist Party Manifesto for the General Election on May 7th 2015 in Scotland.
Download a PDF version here: http://www.scottishcommunists.org.uk/attachments/article/455/Communist_Party_Election_Manifesto_2015_Scotland.pdf
Zoe Hennessy is standing for the Communist Party in Glasgow North West constituency in the General Election on Thursday 7th May 2015.
I am proud to stand as a candidate for the Communist Party. Our party has a long tradition of fighting for working class power, organising in the trade unions and in Scottish communities in the battle for a better standard of life for working people.
Zoe Hennessy is leader of the Young Communist League, lives in Anniesland and has a degree from the University of Glasgow.
Active in her trade union she is 24 years old and works in a supermarket.
I am standing to challenge both the SNP and Labour on their commitment to stand up for working people and end austerity. After the referendum the working people of Scotland need to come together to fight against austerity cuts.
Follow Zoe's campaign on Facebook at
Zoe Hennessy - Communist Party Candidate Glasgow North West
You can download Zoe's Election Address here: http://www.scottishcommunists.org.uk/attachments/article/453/2015_GlasgowNW_address.pdf
THE Communist Party of Britain has unveiled its election strategy to challenge the country’s dire economic and political crisis.
Southern England district secretary Nick Wright told the executive committee at the weekend that the interests of the working-class majority were almost completely excluded from parliamentary and public life.
Recent public opinion polls (see today’s front page) confirmed that most people favour public ownership of services.
Opposition to privatisation of schools and the NHS is almost universal, Mr Wright said.
He outlined a “modest but vital” role for Britain’s communists in the unfolding election campaign.
The party’s candidates in Birmingham Hodge Hill, Croydon North, Devon North, Glasgow North West, Merthyr Tydfil & Rhymney, Newcastle East, Plymouth Sutton & Devonport, Sheffield Central and Torfaen will be presenting the “stark truth” that Britain’s economic and political crisis is inherently capitalist.
As head of the party’s publicity team, Mr Wright revealed that the Communist election campaign would include giant billboards in all contested constituencies, featuring Tax the Rich! as their main slogan.
The Communist Party leadership reiterated its call for the defeat and removal of the Tory-led coalition, which it argued would mean having to vote for Labour candidates in most seats — especially marginal ones.
REVOLUTIONARIES mustered by Karl Marx’s tomb in Highgate cemetery on Sunday to mark the 132nd anniversary of his death.
This year’s gathering takes place 70 years since victory over nazi Germany in World War II and leading Russian communist Yuri Emelianov recalled the heroism and sacrifice of those who gave their lives to defeat Hitler.
With ruling classes across Europe rewriting the history of the war to paint the Soviet Union out of the picture, Mr Emelianov highlighted the part played by communists in winning it.
The conflict was begun by fascist leaders who made no secret of their “virulent anti-Marxism,” he said.
And he noted that the fascist states that arose in the 1920s and ’30s defined themselves as “the anti-Comintern pact,” revealing the central position of anti-communism in nazi ideology.
“The second world war showed that the communists were also the staunchest fighters against these attempts to return mankind to barbarism and the mass extermination of human beings.”
The Red Army was responsible for 73 per cent of German combat casualties during the war, while the 27 million Soviet dead outnumbered those of any other country, Mr Emelianov recalled.
And in other countries from France to China communists led the resistance to fascism.
Britain’s Communist Party speaker Jean Turner warned that 70 years on “the same forces of racism and fascism are stalking Europe.”
Ms Turner pointed to the civil war in Ukraine, where Nato and the European Union are backing a regime whose Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk claims Russia invaded Germany in World War II and which openly deploys neonazi paramilitaries such as the Azov Battalion against its own people.
“We know that the Russian Communist Party is at the forefront of the fight against the neofascists. We salute you,” she told Mr Emelianov.
And the far-right threat was not confined to Europe, Venezuelan embassy first secretary Marcos Garcia warned — noting that the United States’ absurd claim to see Caracas as a “security threat” — could be a prelude to a violent bid to overthrow the Bolivarian revolution.
On this day in 1945 the Red Army of the Soviet Union liberated Auschwitz. Ever since then this day has been commemorated as International Holocaust Memorial Day.
Professor Mary Davis from the Communist Party's Political Committee and National Executive Committee, gives some reflections on the lessons of the Holocaust 70 years on.
From the Young Communist League's Anti-Fascism Anti-Racism Committee 27/01/2015
Today is the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz by soldiers of the Soviet Red Army.
As a result, today is commemorated as International Holocaust Memorial day, a day we remember those who died in the Nazi death camps in their deliberate ploy to wipe out all Jews and non-German “sub-humans”.
It’s worth noting that while we should always remember the most horrendous crimes committed in human history, we should guard against sleep-walking into another holocaust and oppose all racist and fascist elements wherever they rise. Particularly in this time of austerity and financial crisis in which capitalism has once more plunged us into, where migrants and the vulnerable are used as scapegoats for capital’s inability to provide for everyone.
... shows why communists, and those who position themselves on the left, should deepen their resolve and unite against the resurgence of fascism in the 21st century.
The recent rise of fascism in Ukraine, with disciples of Nazi collaborator Stepan Bandera taking positions in the government with the help of the EU-USA-NATO, is testament to this point. The reelection of neo-Nazis in Greece and Hungary, and the rise of the far-right here in Britain and in France shows why communists, and those who position themselves on the left, should deepen their resolve and unite against the resurgence of fascism in the 21st century
In doing so, we should take heed of famous German, communist, Bertolt Brecht’s famous words: “For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the bitch who bore him is in heat again”
Morning Star journalist PETER FROST recalls a unique meeting of minds and cultures during one Burns Night event decades ago
SUNDAY January 25 is Burns Night, for Scotland’s greatest poet Robert Burns was born on that day in 1759.
All over the world, particularly where Scottish emigres are gathered, the peculiar and very special event that is a traditional Burns Night will be celebrated.
From the backwoods of Canada to the far corners of New Zealand, in Africa, South America and the US, the standard format of the night will be played out. The skirl of the pipes will be heard, the haggis will be addressed and then stabbed and much whisky will be consumed.
Every town, village and hamlet in Scotland will have its Burns Night. Many will be held in England too. Morning Star supporters in Manchester will celebrate in fine style, raise some useful money and a smile on Ivan Beavis’s face.
I’ve celebrated a good few Burns Nights in my time, but there is no doubt which is the most memorable.
Some three or more decades ago I was working for a short while in Moscow. Soviet journalist comrades invited me to the International Friendship Club for a special event.
“Oh yes,” they asked, “and could you could buy a bottle of whisky from the hard-currency shop in the tourist hotel where you’re staying?”
I found a bottle, although from the label and the brand name I guessed it may have been brewed beside the Volga rather than the Spey.
The event that night turned out to be a very traditional Burns Night. I hadn’t realised just how popular Burns and his poems — inspired by internationalism and a love and respect for the common man — were among the Soviet people. They recognised the poet as a republican and a revolutionary — a kindred spirit indeed.
We started, despite any official atheism, with the Selkirk Grace:
Some have meat and cannot eat,
Some cannot eat that want it,
but we have meat, and we can eat,
Sae let the Lord be thankit.
As always Burns’s humanity and his principled egalitarianism was much stronger than any of his religious sentiments.
The night took the usual form, but sometimes with a distinctly Soviet twist. The chefs in the club had made a remarkable job of recreating the haggis — a dish they had read about but never seen or tasted. Neeps and tatties however totally defeated them — my explanation came much too late.
The address to the haggis was bilingual. A Soviet literature professor proclaimed it in stentorious Russian and yours truly did the job in as near to the original Scots as a London boy could get.
Poems too came in a variety of languages, including French and Vietnamese from the assembled international Burns fans.
Most of the toasts — and there were many — were taken in good vodka but my bottle of the “water of life” gave many a Russian their first experience of what all the fuss was about.
And from the Moscow conservatoire came a brave young man with a set of ancient bagpipes.
Regular readers will be pleased to know that I only disgraced myself once. I was chatting on the top table with two top Burns experts from Moscow University. Which was my favourite among the poet’s works, they asked.
I explained that I had always had a soft spot for some of Robbie’s ruder works. They looked puzzled, so I gave the assembled poetry lovers my party piece. It was one of his works unknown in Russia — and indeed not too well known in Scotland — his notorious Twa Wives.
If you don’t know the work here’s a fragment:
She farted by the byre-en’
She farted by the stable;?
And thick and nimble were her steps
As fast as she was able.
In retrospect I’m not too proud of my contribution to Anglo-Soviet cultural understanding that night.
Perhaps I can put it down to the whisky. What I do know is that I’ll never forget that amazing Soviet Burns Night in Moscow all those years ago.
Acting editor BEN CHACKO unveils our campaign to find 1,000 new readers and spread the struggle far and wide
THIS will be a huge campaigning year for us as we count down to May’s general election. The Morning Star is 85. It was founded in 1930, in a country mired in the Great Depression that followed the Wall Street Crash, to act as the voice of working people resisting a ruling class determined to make them pay for its crisis.
The parallels with today are obvious, and the need for our paper — the voice of the organised labour movement, the only daily paper committed to peace and socialism — is more acute than ever as we approach the general election.
"the need for our paper — the voice of the organised labour movement, the only daily paper committed to peace and socialism — is more acute than ever!"
Austerity is not an accident. It is not, as it is sometimes portrayed even on the left, a daft economic policy
aimed at reducing debt and fostering an economic recovery which happens to be counterproductive.
Austerity is a logical — and so far successful — strategy by Britain’s ruling class to increase its share of
our country’s wealth by taking it away from working people.
"Austerity is a logical — and so far successful — strategy by Britain’s ruling class to increase its share of our country’s wealth by taking it away from working people."
In the process, the gains won by workers over the past century have to be reversed.
That means attacks on our pensions, our wages and our workplace rights, as well as on public services such as the NHS, locally accountable schools, free higher and further education and many more things which previous generations fought for in order that people could live, work and retire in dignity.
"That means attacks on .. things which previous generations fought for"
So austerity is logical. But that doesn’t mean it’s inevitable. Working people have fought and won before, which is why we have these services in the first place.
And every day workers are resisting the ruling-class onslaught, most effectively through their trade unions.
Only the Star reports these struggles. But we must reach more readers if that story is to be heard loud and
clear — and May 2015 is to become the election the labour movement won.
And every day workers are resisting the ruling-class onslaught, most effectively through their trade unions.
Only the Star reports these struggles.
What’s the 1,000 New Readers campaign?
We’re launching the 1,000 New Readers campaign to reverse the gradual decline in sales that has affected the Morning Star alongside the rest of print media.
We’re looking at everything. Meetings have begun with trade unions to discuss how we can co-operate to maximum effect — what they need from our paper and how we can reach the members who aren’t yet daily readers. The support we’ve received has been phenomenal and humbling, with a wide range of excellent ideas coming in, including offering union members subsidised access to our e-edition and app, using the paper in union education programmes and ensuring members know that this is the newspaper that tells their story.
It’s not just unions we’re approaching — we’ll be meeting with activists for political parties including Labour,
the Greens and the Communist Party to see how we can campaign most effectively for the left policies we need to turn this country around. Our paper has a great relationship already with anti-austerity movement the People’s Assembly as well as a wide range of solidarity and progressive campaigning organisations, but we’ll be looking to improve our links and cross-promotion with all of them.
The Star is privileged to have the best and most committed readers of any newspaper
The Star is privileged to have the best and most committed readers of any newspaper, and many of them run readers and supporters groups up and down the country. We’ll be looking to help these groups grow, found new ones and make the most of this unique asset. All this is combined with a proactive new approach to promoting our stories and those of our labour movement allies on social media, spreading the word far and wide to workers in struggle: we are your paper.
How will we measure success?
Last year we ran the Summer of Heroes fundraising campaign and were bowled over by the colossal £154,000+ you raised for the paper.
It’s easy to report on how much money comes in, but the 1,000 New Readers campaign will be trickier.
Sales fluctuate day by day, week by week, town by town. But we’ll be setting regional targets and analysing
what strategies are paying dividends in each area. Success would, obviously, mean a rise in sales by 1,000 a
day on average, but we wouldn’t stop there. The daily paper of the left should be a mass circulation weapon
in the hands of the labour movement.
We hope too that by revitalising our relationships with the trade unions, organisations and campaigns of the left we will give new life to the paper itself, improving the range and depth of our content and strengthening our campaigning punch.
Our first editor William Rust quoted Lenin on the role of a workers’ paper:
“An economic and political tool of the masses in struggle.”
That’s the future we see for our Morning Star.
Be sure not to miss out on the Free Morning Star e-Edition subscription for a week! 1000READERSOFFER and let all your friends, family & colleagues - and share this great offer on social media as much as you can!
Thursday 22 January
Instead of devolving real powers to Scotland to enhance public services and intervene in the economy in the interests of workers and their families, the Tory-LibDem coalition intends to devolve the responsibility for enforcing austerity.
The draconian fiscal framework set out in today's legislative proposals will drastically limit the capacity of the Scottish parliament and government to borrow to fund public services or invest in the economy. Raising taxes to spend and invest will in many cases automatically lead to a reduction in Scotland's annual block grant from London, making some of the new tax-raising powers meaningless.
Most importantly, there is no element of redistribution in today's proposals that would transfer wealth from the richest section of Britain's population concentrated in south-east England to Scotland, Wales and the English regions.
At the same time, the block grant's Barnett Formula is not to be amended to reflect levels of deprivation and need, perpetuating the unfair treatment of Wales and the English regions.
Between them, London's fiscal straightjacket and EU basic treaties would make it all but impossible for a future Scottish government to take vital industries and services into public ownership.
It is also significant that the financing of political parties has been specifically excluded from Edinburgh's proposed new powers over the electoral process, enabling Scottish Tories to continue enjoying massive outside subsidies from big business and the City.
While the SNP and Plaid Cymru seek to cut Scotland and Wales off from a united political class struggle to redistribute wealth across Britain, and the Labour leadership has largely opted out so far, the Communist Party will continue to campaign for a Wealth Tax, a financial transaction levy on the City of London, higher corporation tax on big business profits and a major reduction in VAT.
Instead of the SNP policy to devolve and cut corporation tax in a race to the bottom with England, Wales and Northern Ireland, Britain's communists call for a system of 'progressive federalism', giving guaranteed financial and law-making powers to Scottish and Welsh parliaments and English regions, redistributing wealth and planning economic development for the benefit of all.