Feature

Privatising the Privates

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Labour now plans to privatise the military.

While this war is fought for the corporations, the next one will be fought by the corporations. Labour's military privatisation programme means companies will supply and operate key warplanes, warships and army vehicles. The firms will even lure, train and employ soldiers under the Private Finance Initiative (PR). Privatising war is a Labour priority.

We're Only Asking for the World

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Ian Birchall reviews a new book on anti-capitalism by Alex Callinicos.

'Another world is possible' is the most popular slogan of the anti-capitalist movement. In his new book Alex Callinicos contributes to the debate about how we get there. As usual, Alex has read all the important books and articles which many of us haven't got round to. For the busy activist and the beginner who wants to know what the arguments are all about, this book is invaluable.

Far Right: Beating the Bigots

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The Nazi BNP believe that they're on the verge of a breakthrough at the May local elections. But the growth of left wing forces shows there is a power to beat them.

Eighteen months on from the race riots they sparked, Britain's Nazis--the British National Party (BNP)--are exploiting an increase in racial tension. To add to their council seats in Burnley, Blackburn and Halifax, they are planning to stand over 200 candidates in May's local elections, four times the number they stood last year (when 16 candidates got more than 10 percent of the vote). The BNP believe they are poised to follow in the footsteps of their European counterparts such as Le Pen, Fini and Haider.

Shock and Awe

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Mike Davis analyses the Pentagon's plans for a revolution in military affairs.

Imperial Washington, like Berlin in the late 1930s, has become a psychedelic capital where one megalomaniacal hallucination succeeds another. Thus in addition to creating a new geopolitical order in the Middle East, we are now told by the Pentagon's deepest thinkers that the invasion of Iraq will also inaugurate 'the most important revolution in military affairs (RMA) in 200 years'.

Bombs Away

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Andy Newman explains the strategic importance of Britain to the US war machine.

In 1999 I was working in a small engineering factory about six miles east of RAF Fairford, and we used to watch the American B-52s flying overhead on their way to Serbia. It was chilling to know that three hours later they would be raining death from the skies. I later spoke to a Serbian refugee whose district had been bombed by these same planes. I wrote down at the time what she said: 'There were no shelters. When the bombing started I used to get my child to go to the cellar, but it would have given no protection.

Assembling Our Forces

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Mike Gonzalez got a taste of people when he visited Argentina recently.

The wonderful thing about 15 February was that it felt like an exercise of power. But people's power is about much more than great gatherings in the streets. The demonstrations and meetings are enormously important. But our ambitions as socialists are much bigger than that. We are talking about a world where working people run their own lives directly--shape how wealth is distributed, what priorities govern what society produces, and how to develop new and freer lives.

State of Discontent

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A mass movement's strategy towards the state is vital to its success.

The huge wave of anti-war protests on 15 February were an astonishing demonstration of just how formidable a movement of resistance to imperialism is now developing around the world. But we should have no illusions about the power of our enemies. Politically, Tony Blair has never been weaker. But he still presides over a state that has formidable coercive power.

'Fighting for Tomorrow': George Gomez

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George Gomez has been a Trotskyist since 1948. He recently attended the Asian Social Forum at Hyderabad and spoke to Joseph Choonara about his life.

I was born in 1927 in the state of Tamil Nadu. I come from a Roman Catholic family in a fishing community. I was born and brought up among fishing workers. My parents were socialists and progressive. Through them I got interested in the problems of the people and started looking for solutions. After I had finished studying I had to go to Sri Lanka to find work. My father had died and I was the only member of my family earning money. I wanted to get involved in progressive groups in Sri Lanka, and I contacted Indian socialists to get magazines.

Let My Brothers Go

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Three Irish Republicans are facing a show trial in Colombia.

On 11 August 2001 my brother Niall Connolly was arrested at Bogota airport along with Jim Monaghan and Martin McCauley. Having visited an area ceded to the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) by the then Colombian president Andreas Pastrana as part of the now stalled Colombian peace process, the men were initially detained on suspicion of carrying false documentation. The three were then transferred to a military compound near the US embassy, where a number of forensic tests were carried out on their clothing and belongings.

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