Back us, anti-war MPs tell disaffected canvassers

From today’s Guardian. Note this passage in particular: “However, Labour Against the War itself suffered a high-profile defection last month, when founding member Harry Barnes – who is standing down at the election – left the group, accusing it of ‘giving succour to terrorists’ by demanding the immediate withdrawal of British troops.”

Ann Clwyd Reports from Iraq

Ann Clwyd MP, The Prime Minister’s Special Envoy for Human Rights in Iraq (and Joint President of Labour Friends of Iraq) has been reporting from Iraq for BBC Radio 4’s ‘Today’ Programme. To listen to yesterday’s clip, from Kirkuk, (14 December) go here and scroll down to 08.46 on the Running Order. (Alan Johnson)

Jack Straw: “Now there are free trade unionists”

An extract from Jack Straw’s address to Labour Party Conference 30th September 2004. The full speech is on And where, under Saddam, those who campaigned for free trade unions often ended in a mass grave with a bullet in their back, now there are free trade unionists. One of its members, Abdullah Muhsin of the Iraqi Federation of Trade Unions is here today. Hear what he wrote in the Conference Daily on Tuesday, and I quote: “You have two options before you this week. One would give hope to all those in Iraq who want to see free trade … Continue reading Jack Straw: “Now there are free trade unionists”

Motion submitted by North East Derbyshire CLP to Labour Party conference

Original text of motion submitted by North East Derbyshire CLP to Labour Party Conference. The motion was composited and then remitted in favour of a statement from the National Executive Committee, which included all the main points of this motion, which was also the subject of a speech by Harry Barnes, MP for North East Derbyshire and Joint President of LFIQ.

Gary Kent, Director

I joined the Labour Party in 1976 and the ILP (Independent Labour Publications) in 1978. I studied International Relations with French at Sussex and was full-time Convenor for Sussex Area NUS. After periods of work as a trainee station manager, co-op education officer, FE lecturer, I started work with Harry Barnes MP in 1987. We organised London Against the Poll Tax in the late 80s. Ireland has been a major interest and I was an organiser of the British-Irish Peace Train Organisation (which assembled broad coalition against terrorism) and currently Chair of the cross-party New Dialogue peace group. Freelance journalist. … Continue reading Gary Kent, Director

Jane Ashworth, Chair

I joined the Party in 76 and was active in the YS until going onto college. I supported the paper Socialist Organiser until 1989 and set up Socialist Students in NOLS. From then I went into the politics of women in sport and set up the Northern League of womens football and a team which made it to the FA Women’s Premiership. In 2002 I published a novelised account of the struggles of working class women footballers called Kicking The Boys Balls. I am a member of Reading East and PCS.

Alan Johnson, Research and Publications Officer

I was born in North Shields and became a socialist in 1979 as a volunteer in Days of Hope bookshop in Newcastle. I joined the Labour Party in 1980 and have been a member of Natfhe since 1991. I helped set up the Merseyside Museum of Labour History in 1984 (now the Museum of Liverpool Life). I was the co-editor of the US journal ‘New Politics: a journal of socialist thought’ and an editor of the UK journal ‘Historical Materialism’. My research work has focussed on the history of socialist thought and the political leadership of social movements. I co-edited … Continue reading Alan Johnson, Research and Publications Officer

Grassroots Iraq: The role of the IFTU in Iraq’s new civil society

The Iraqi Federation of Trade Unions (IFTU) invites you to a special reception, with speeches, at the Labour Party conference. Kindly sponsored by The Observer, The Fabian Society, Unison, LabourStart and War on Want . 6-8pm, Wednesday 29 September Samphire Restaurant, Hilton Metropole Hotel Refreshments Chair: Harry Barnes MP Speakers: Abdullah Muhsin, IFTU Foreign Representative Bill Rammell MP (Foreign Office Minister) Rt Hon Ann Clwyd MP (Prime Minister’s Special Envoy to Iraq on Human Rights) Owen Tudor (TUC International Secretary) Keith Sonnet (Deputy General Secretary of Unison) Please note all participants require a conference pass By invitation only: requests and … Continue reading Grassroots Iraq: The role of the IFTU in Iraq’s new civil society