The following is a report on a demonstration organized by Direct Antiwar Action (Dawa) against the visit of Peter Hain as guest of the NZ Labour Party last November.
Send UK warmonger Peter Hain home!
Protest Sunday 14th at 8-30 am, Bruce Mason Centre, Takapuna.
DAWA (Direct Anti-War Action) and other anti-war groups are organising a protest outside the Labour Party Conference, Sunday 8-30 am.
Prominent Labour Party Minister and Leader of the House in Blair's Government, Peter Hain, is due to speak at the Conference at 9 am.
Despite a record as an anti-apartheid activist and founder of the Anti-Nazi League in Britain in the 1970's Hain is now an apologist for Blair's invasion of Iraq to remove Saddam Hussein.
NZ Labour is trading on its 'liberal reputation' in only supporting the Gulf War UN sanctions during the 1990s to kill half-a-million kids, and not supporting the US-UK led invasion of 2003.
By bringing Hain to address them NZ Labour is showing that it does not care that this man supports the US-UK invasion and that its own refusal to support the invasion was unimportant. It is more interested in using Hain to provide a rationale for its 'left Blairism' in NZ.
We reject Labour's hypocrisy on the war on Iraq that is flaunted in our face by the presence of this British warmonger. Here is a quote from an interview with Hain made earlier in the year:
Peter Hain said:
I certainly stand by my reason for backing the action to get rid of Saddam Hussein. I saw clear evidence from intelligence sources about Saddam's possession of weapons of mass destruction which the UN itself set out in resolution 1441. And of course he had used chemical weapons against the Iranians and the Kurds. We will have to see the outcome of the Iraq Survey Group but its former head David Kay, whilst acknowledging that he had not discovered militarized chemical weapons, also said in statements to the US congress which were hardly if at all reported, that he was even more shocked at what he found about Saddam's WMD programs than he had expected and thought it was essential to have got rid of him.
I respect those who disagree with our action in Iraq who included relatives and friends. All I ask is that they and you accept that the government acted honestly in what we genuinely thought and still do, was the best interests of the Iraqi people, the wider region and the whole world.
On the 45-minute claim, the Hutton report confirmed that this had been accurately reported in the dossier. Indeed there was nothing in the dossier that went in against the wishes of the intelligence services. The 45-minute claim played no part in the critical parliamentary debate in March last year which led to a vote authorizing the action in Iraq. It was not relied upon by the PM in his opening speech or referred to by any other MP, so for me it was not a crucial issue. As I've said already he had already used WMD on his own people and fired missiles into Kuwait and Israel so we were not dealing with some hypothetical situation. …the inquiry into the leaking of the Hutton report, which I and the rest of the government wholly condemned, is being carried out by Lord Hutton himself fully independent of government. No doubt he will report his findings in due course."DAWA (Direct Anti-War Action) FFI ring Keith (09) 8369104
Workers against the War on Terror
Next Meeting: Sat March 5th 4-7pm
Grey Lynn Community Centre
· Building rank and file opposition to the War on Terror
· Organising solidarity with the Million Worker March against the war in Iraq on 19th March
Rank and file workers need to organize in the international labour movement to support the workers movement in Iraq to defeat the occupation and demand a Constituent Assembly. No to the WOT! No to attacks on Iran, North Korea! Cuba! Venezuela!
Report on Workers Forum held at Grey Lynn Community Centre 9th December
INTERNATIONAL WEEK OF ACTION AGAINST THE WAR ON TERROR
ORGANISING AGAINST THE WAR ON TERROR IN IRAQ AND IN NEW ZEALAND
ASYLUM FOR AHMED ZAOUI!
SUPPORT THE MOHAMMED ABDUL RAHEEM CAMPAIGN IN SOLIDARITY WITH IRAQI WORKERS!
The meeting was hosted by the Communist Workers Group but those present represented a wider range of political positions. This short report is an attempt to summarise the basic concerns expressed and the types of actions needed. Those present on December 9, all active rank and file unionists, or with experience in unions, including: Engineers (EPMU); Maritime and Rail; NDU (Woodies); Service and Food; UNITE! (Waitemata); Association of University Staff (AUS); Association of Staff in Tertiary Education (ASTE)
Organising rank and file workers to take industrial action against the war
IMMEDIATELY Bush was re-elected he invaded and destroyed Fallujah. He authorised the use of napalm and many badly burned bodies have been found. The US ruling class and their front man Bush will stop at no act of barbarism to recolonise Iraq and rip off its oil wealth.
There has been a muted response in the West. Where are the millions who were on the streets in February 2003? The sad fact is that many Western workers are demoralised by Bush's reelection. They put their hopes in a Vietnam warmonger Kerry to rescue them from Iraq. False hopes!
Time to organise! Begging our leaders to get out of Iraq or to put pressure on Bush and Blair is futile. European Union leaders and Howard and Clark are all sucking up to Bush to get some of the spoils of war, via free trade agreements and more US Yankee dollars. Only the workers can stop the barbarism of the War on Terror from spreading and creating more Iraqs, more Guantanamos and many more victims like Ahmed Zaoui in every country.
Yet all is not lost! In Iraq, despite the treacherous factional leaders who use the masses as cannon fodder while they compete to do deals with the invaders - like the Sunni bosses who ran away from Fallujah leaving their militants to be slaughtered in the US attack - workers are rebuilding the smashed workers organizations.
Unions are forming; workers are defending their jobs arms in hand, and striking against the invaders. They are getting support from the international working class.
In Venezuela, workers have formed an anti-imperialist front to demand that President Chavez stops selling oil to the US to use in its War on Terror military machine. In the US the Million Worker March unionists are organising a week of action against the war from December 3-11. In Aotearoa-NZ it is time that we organised in the unions to get support for the Iraqi trade unionists and in solidarity with international workers actions such as the week of December 3-11.
Communist Workers Group are hosting this forum in solidarity with the Iraqi workers, the Venezuelan anti-imperialist fighters, the US Million Worker March against the war, and workers everywhere who are organising an international workers movement to Defend Iraq and stop imperialist war.
The two main areas of concern and need for activity expressed were:
First, building solidarity in NZ unions for the rebuilding of worker organizations in Iraq including the unemployed and women’s organizations. This does not exclude un-unionised workers; in fact it would make it a priority to unionise all unpaid domestic workers, unemployed workers, beneficiaries, 'voluntary’ workers, youth, temporary or casual workers, workers forced into self-employment, migrant workers etc and to strive to rebuild the unions on the basis of rank and file democracy.
Second, information and actions that can be taken up by workers against the domestic WOT in NZ in particular the series of repressive laws that restrict basic freedoms to organise politically. It was observed that the NZ government is moving in line with the US to turn the WOT against NZ workers, e.g. restructuring the military and building more jails to deal with working class resistance.
From Class Struggle 59 January-February 2005