09/02/2016 by socialistfight
The Irish Republican Prisoners Support Group has a picket on Friday 12th at 16:00 of the Irish Embassy, 17 Grosvenor Place, London to demand; Implement the August 2010 Agreement, Political Status for All Irish Republican POWs, Free the Craigavon Two and End Internment by Remand.
On the following day, Saturday 13th, the Grass Roots Left open National Committee meets at 12:00 in Birmingham, Wellington Bar, 37 Bennets Hill, City Centre. We are pleased to announce that on 2nd March Steve Forrest and Maria Begonia, Chair and Secretary respectively of Keith Henderson’s GMB branch, won their appeal against their suspensions for informing their membership that Keith Henderson wanted a nomination to stand for GMB General Secretary. They won outright and now the question arises about why such ridiculous charges were proceeded with in the first place. And, of course, it sets up Keith for his case at the TU Certification Officer on the 1 March, for which we are organising a picket – see below.
On the very next day, Sunday 14th Socialist Fight has its Public Meeting on Zionism and Colonialism at The Cock Tavern, 23 Phoenix Road, near Euston. Speakers are Ian Donovan: Socialist Fight EB, Gerry Downing: Socialist Fight EB, Ailish Dease: Socialist Fight EB, Author The imperialist rape of the Congo: the Longest Genocide and Chair: Carol Foster, Socialist Fight EB.
The theme is the amazing political authority of Zionism globally persists even on the left despite its regular ‘lawn mowing’ genocidal mass murder of mainly defenceless Palestinians. “Pro-Israel ideology has a similar level of hegemony to Cold War anti-communism among the ruling class” Ian Donovan observes; “Jewish organisations (outside Israel) support Israel with the same loyalty which communist parties accorded to the USSR for so long”. And he sets out the material basis for the power of the Israel lobby in the USA (and elsewhere): “for the United States, which is the most powerful state in human history, you can easily find informed Jewish sources that place the representation of Jews among billionaires, the most powerful elements of the capitalist elite, at between 40 and 48% – nearly half. This is the only logically coherent explanation for the power of the so-called lobby.”
On 26th February the Irish Republican Prisoners Support Group will picket the Ministry of Justice, UK, 102 Petty France, this time. Demands are similar only to the British authorities this time. The continued harassment of Republicans and their families is the theme of this picket, the continued use internment by remand and the refusal to implement the August 2010 agreement on Strip Searching and the refusal to use of the Boss Chair as an alternative, accepted even in the goals of Texas. On Internment by remand any further delays in the case of an alleged senior dissident republican held in custody for two years on a charge of trying to murder police officers may not be tolerated, a judge has warned. Henry Fitzsimons’ latest bid to secure High Court bail is to be re-examined next month after a voice analyst is due to testify at a separate hearing to establish if he has a case to answer.
On 1st March there is a Picket in Support of Keith Henderson organised by the Grass Roots Left at 9:00 am in front of Acas Euston Tower 286 Euston Road London. Keith is taking his case to the TU Certification Officer, having exhausted all other options. Keith was supported by the Labour Representation Committee in his Industrial Tribunal against the GMB and the Grass Roots Left still supports him. The numbered complaints will be as follows:
1. On or around 1 July 2015 GMB breached section 47(1) of the 1992 Act in that the Union’s by-law 13 relating to the Election of General Secretary and Treasurer 2015 prevented Mr Henderson, and other lay members of the Union, from contacting branches to advise them of their intention to stand as a candidate in the election for the post of General Secretary and Treasurer.
2. On or around 1 July 2015 GMB breached section 47(1) of the 1992 Act in that the nomination period of 8 weeks was insufficient for intended nominees to gain the required nominations from 30 branches and was insufficient for branches to arrange and hold meetings to decide upon whether to support a given individual’s nomination.
3. On or around 1 July 2015 GMB breached section 47(1) of the 1992 Act in that the Union’s London Central X58 branch was not provided with the necessary papers/information for the election of General Secretary and Treasurer, including the nomination form, until 3 weeks into the nomination period which curtailed the 8 week nomination period thereby leaving insufficient time to write to branch members, arrange a suitable date for a nomination meeting, arrange a venue and give reasonable notice to members of such a meeting.
4. On or around 1 July 2015 GMB breached section 47(1) of the 1992 Act in that the Union did not provide sufficient information that the election of General Secretary and Treasure was being held and, in particular, most members did not know of the 22 June to 17 August 2015 nomination period as no written notification to the membership was allowed and there was no notification on the Union’s website.
5. On or around 30 June 2015 GMB breached the Union’s by-law 13 in that Regional Secretaries Tim Roache, Paul McCarthy and Paul Maloney and National Secretary Gary Smith contacted the Morning Star newspaper directly or indirectly which published an article stating that these Union officials were seeking nominations from GMB branches for the election of General Secretary and Treasurer. This article constituted the issuing, on behalf of candidates in the election, of a text, circular or other material (whether written, typed or printed and whether communicated electronically or otherwise), other than an election address according with by-laws 6 to 12 inclusive, and so was prohibited under by-law 13.
On 13th March Socialist Fight will hold a Debate in the EU Referendum: Three Marxist Perspectives at 13:30 at the Cock Tavern featuring Gerry Downing (Yes), Ian Donovan (Abstain) and Graham Durham (No). There will a further Socialist Fight Meeting on 10th April at the Cock Tavern at 14.00 on The Lost Bolivian Revolution of 1952. Amancay Colque, from La Paz and the Bolivia Solidarity Campaign, UK will speak alongside a speaker from Revolutionary History (hopefully).