Page 2 No.48 March/April/May 1997

Scots Fight Back - people resist cut backs by local authorites

Social Justice- Dockers fight harbour company scabs

Magnet- workers go on strike

Hillingdon Support - hospital workers seek support

world to win-

the heaviest penalty- suicides in prison

nobody's fool - a new society:what you cannot vote for

inside info - there in there for us, we are out here for them

Squatters Resist

No to fortress Europe

Women FightBack

Days that Shook the Tarmac

Korea Opportunities

Bouganville Resists

Working on a Chain Gang

Lost in Limbo

Useful Contacts

LOUISE CLARK is an Edinburgh woman unjustly imprisoned for 5 years in Cornton Vale prison for the murder of her abusive partner who made her life hell for years. Her Support Campaign has collected 2,000 plus signatures on a petition and has organised a demo outside Cornton Vale on 15 March. Ê

McLiars Guilty

AS CI goes to press the verdict is expected soon -probably April or May - in the McLibel case, in which 2 London Greenpeace activists, Helen Steele and Davposing the truth about their food and business practices. The case began when thee Morris, are being sued by McDonalds for exposing the truth about their food and business practices. The case began when the m9. McSpotlight www site 1. 0171 713 1269.ght wwwulti-billion dollar corporation tried to suppress the distribution of the leaflet "What's Wrong With McDonalds?" Since the writs were served on Helen and Dave, over 1.5 million of the leaflets have been handed out. Regardless of the outcome of the trial, supporters are encouraged to "Adopt a Store" to ensure that every one of the 700+ McGarbage outlets is leafleted and picketed on the Saturday following the announcement of the verdict, and on a regular basis. ( McLibel Support Campaign, Kids against McDonas, Support Network for McDonalds Workers, all at 5 Caledonain Rd, London N1. 0171 713 1269. McSpotlight www site PHOTO CAPTION Dave Morris defies police to read out the "What's Wrong With McDonalds?" leaflet outside McDonalds, Princes St, Edinburgh during a 80-100 strong demo on 22 February. (Photo Norrie, Wester Hailes) During Dave's Scottish tour he spoke to 160 people at an Edinburgh meeting and 100 in Glasgow. A demo was also held at a McDonalds store in Glasgow, on 21 Feb.. the Saturday following the announcement of the verdict, and on a regular basis. (leaflets £15 per 1,000 from 0115 958 5666) McLibel Support Campaign, Kids against McDonald Ê

Lost in limbo

An Edinburgh postal worker writes: YET again the Communication Workers Union bureaucracy has managed to engineer the postal dispute into limbo. In a 2nd ballot members reaffirmed their determtinue the struggle against the "Employer Agenda".ination to continue the struggle against the "Employer Agenda". But then the CWU leadership, through the intervention of Peter Hain and other Labour MP's, reached an interim settlement with Royal Mail - more talks, more negotiations over team working and and the 2nd delivery guarantees - and all industrial action was suspended. The CWU leadership put the deal to the membership only as a package that included acceptance of the '96 pay rise. This allowed technical staff, previously kept out of the dispuute against strikers' wishes, to vote on the Employer Agenda. Members' disillusionment showed in the low poll return which gave the CWU its "yes" vote to participate in "Joint Working Parties". These will deliver an inevitable fudge in April for our Union leadership to manipulate another "yes" vote if given half a chance. The whole dispute has demonstrated the futility of trusting all those "left-leaning" officials on the National Executive and once again reveeeing" officials on the NaEC and once again reveals the importance of creating independent grass-roots organisation of activists. The outstanding issue of sacked and disciplined strikers has not been resolved by the CWU leadership who seem to be intent upon minimising any fight on their behalf by their colleagues. Ê


The Rochester hunger strike was started on 6 January 1997, refugees and asylum seekers held without time limit, charges, or proper medical or legal provisions, and with no avenue of complaint. They are calling for an independent body and judical committee to hear their cases. Some have been held for 2 years or more. Rochester is a centre of opposition for hundreds of people held in detention. There have been protests at Winson Green, Campsfield, Harmondsworth, Haslar, Bedsford, and many other prisons. Half of all detainees are held in prison, 90% of those detained are black, and 45% are suffering from mental or physical health conditions resulting from torture or other ill-treatment. The detainees are men, women and children trying to reach a place of safety after suffering rape, torture, persecution or toher vi8olenc. They and other detainees are regularly strip-searched, taunted and suffer other abuse. The hunger strike was suspended in late February but the struggle still continues.refugees' Latest info from Rochester Hunger Strike Support Group, c/o Hackney Unison, 219 Mare St., London E8 3QQ. 0181 985 7134 (Brian Debus) or 0181 986 3606. National Coalition of Anti Deportation Campaigns, 22 Berners St., Birmingham B19 2DR. Tel 0121 554 6947 fax 0121 507 1567 e mail rape,torture, persecution or other vie Ê

WORLD TO WIN Recent months have seen a wave of resistance from workers as governments across the globe impose austerity measures and cuts in public spendingÉ The last week of 96 saw Israel brought to a standstill as 400,000 workers, mainly in the public sector, struck for 5 days in protest at the government's proposed budget cuts. The telephone company, banks, postoffices, seaports, airports and radio and TV stations were all affected by the strike which forced the Knesset to reject the budget. The govt. wants to reduce deficits and pay for financial incentives to settlers on the Gaza Strip and West Bank. The Israeli working class have already suffered through increased taxes and welfare cuts. Meanwhile an 8 day strike by 800,000 public sector workers in Colombia forced the govt. to back down on its plans to limit wage increases to 9% below inflation.

Union bosses? Who needs 'em.

Following a 97% vote for strike action in February, Ireland's nurses have forced their govt. to dish out IR£80m including nearly IR£30m in back pay. They previously rejected 4 separate deals negotiated by union leaders despite govt. protests that there was no more money.

Villagers refuse to Tho Da line

Residents of the North Vietnamese village of Tho Da, north of the capital Hanoi, fear venturing outside its confines, following clashes between themselves and riot police. The centuries old village and its rice fields are to be destoyed to make way for a new golf course being developed by the South Korean Daewoo Group. Although resigned to the loss of their land, the villagers are fighting for adequate compensation and have fought with security forces twice in the last year. 1 woman was killed, scores injured and 4 arrested when police tried to destroy the crop in May 96. On Decemeber 30, townspeople burnt a lorry and other vehicles, preventing the completion of an access track through the fields during a pitched battle with cops armed with tear gas and electric prods. The compensation per household has been raised from £125 to £380 but as one villager says, "With the amount they have offered us, we cannot live".


On February 6, protests against rates payments in Johannesburg turned into full-scle battles with police. At least 2 adults and 2 children were killed an scores injured following the protests in 8 mixed-race townships, south-west of the city, where unemployment runs at 80%. The southern Metro Council, which wants £80m in unaid bills, was rumoured to be preparing to evict or cut off electricity from those in arrears. Cops fired rubber bullets during the day-long fighting and army units were called in as barricades were built.


On 16 Feb, Iranian riot cops arrested scores of oil workers who were demonstrating at the Oil Ministry in demand of higher pay.

Rio de Janeiro

On 23 Feb, five street kids, aged 12 to 17, were dragged from a bus by 4 gunmen and, in front of the other passengers, murdered for not having tickets.


On December 19, the Irish environment minister announced the abolition of the hated water and sewerage charges. The state's defeat at the hands of the campaign by the Federation of Anti-Water Charges, which calls on 17,000 paid-up households. Total arrears are thought to be IR£25m with 80% of households eligible to pay, either behind or having paid nothing. Despite the victory, the battle's not over yet as council officials have threatened to 'pursue arrears to the bitter end', no matter the legal delays or cost and a number of families are appealing against court disconnection orders. Info: Black Flag, Ainrial.

Nuclear power? Fuck off.

The biggest and most expensive peacetime mobilisation of German police took place during the first week in March. 30,000 cops were needed to allow the delivery of nuclear waste to the northern town of Gorleben after 10,000 encamped protestors blocked the final part of the convoy's route. Over 100 were injured as cops forced their way through with truncheons and water canon. Several 100 responded with stones and petrol bombs. The German govt. plans over 100 such deliveries in the years to come. Ê