Solidarity with Grassroots Iraq: equality, labour rights and new thinking on foreign policy Labour Friends of Iraq, Unison, the Iraqi Community Association and Demos fringe meeting at the 2005 Labour Party conference This meeting is an opportunity to hear from those who are struggling to help rebuild an independent labour movement and civil society in Iraq and to hear from a key organisation of Iraqis in Britain. Chair: Dave Anderson MP Dave was previously the President of Unison and is the newly elected Labour MP for Blaydon as well as Joint President of LFIQ. Abdullah Muhsin Abdullah is the International … Continue reading Our fringe meeting at Labour Party Conference in Brighton on 28 September
Alex Gordon, an RMT activist, examines developments in the Iraqi trade union movement There have been dramatic new developments within the Iraqi labour movement, which has grown enormously in confidence and strength since the fall of Saddam Hussein in April 2003. Keith Sonnet, Deputy General Secretary of Unison, which actively organises practical solidarity action with the Iraqi movement, told last week’s TUC that “Iraqi unions are getting their act together.” The Iraqi Federation of Trade Unions (IFTU) has since its foundation conference on 16 May 2003 insisted on the need to refound the Iraqi trade unions movement, not on an … Continue reading Iraqi unions getting their act together
See Seixon for a full transcript of the Galloway-Hitchens debate. Hat Tip: Harry’s Place
This harrowing report from Amnesty International details abuses by human rights by armed groups in Iraq saying amongst other things that Many of these killings by armed groups, in Amnesty Internationals view, constitute war crimes or crimes against humanity. As such, there is an obligation on both the Iraqi government and the international community at large to ensure that the perpetrators of these crimes are identified and brought to justice. There can be no excuse for such abuses; international humanitarian law clearly distinguishes certain acts as crimes irrespective of the causes of a conflict or the grounds on which the … Continue reading In cold blood: abuses by armed groups
Guy Ryder General Secretary of the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions, 14 September 2005 told the TUC that Iraqi workers who paid again today a tragic price need our solidarity to build free trade unions in the aftermath of a war opposed unanimously by all ICFTU affiliates and to secure decent labour legislation.
The Guardian leader examines the arguments over the withdrawal of troops from Iraq and says that It is true that an immediate pullout might please the very many people, in Britain and elsewhere, who so adamantly opposed the war in the first place and would like to be vindicated by a implicit admission of failure. But it is hard to argue with the proposition that a precipitate withdrawal would make a bad situation even worse, in that the Iraqi security forces would find it harder to tackle an increasingly sophisticated and brutal insurgency. It is entirely right to be angry … Continue reading No easy answers in Iraq
The IFTU web site carries a report of the fringe meeting at the TUC where President of the Iraqi Federation of Trade Unions (IFTU), Raseen Alawadi was well received on the day when extremists slaughtered Iraqi workers desperate for work.
Over at drinksoakedtrotsforwar there is a reasonable summary of the long-awaited debate between Christopher Hitchens and George Galloway in New York.
The Prime Minister told the World Summit on Terrorism that – Terrorism will not be defeated until our determination is as complete as theirs, our defence of freedom as absolute as their fanaticism, our passion for the democratic way as great as their passion for tyranny. Here is the full speech First of all, on behalf of the United Kingdom, let me thank everyone for supporting this resolution. We should not under-estimate what we face. This terrorism that today again has claimed the lives of innocent people, this time queuing for jobs in Iraq, that has now disfigured countries in … Continue reading Tony Blair on terror
The Prime Minister argued the following – Give people the chance and they always vote for freedom; always prefer tolerance to prejudice, will never willingly accept the suppression of human rights and governance by extremism. Here is the full speech. The UN must come of age. It must become the visible and credible expression of the globalisation of politics. The modern world insists we are dependent on each other. We work with each other or we suffer in isolation. The principles of the UN have always had a moral force. Today they receive the sharper impulse of self-interest. The terrorist … Continue reading Tony Blair tells UN of power of democracy