The Militant (logo)  

Vol. 76/No. 15      April 16, 2012

25, 50 and 75 years ago

April 17, 1987

WAPUTO, Wash.—“The strikers of today will be the architects of the future.” “We will struggle, and we won’t get tired.”

These were some of the slogans raised on hand-painted signs by 400 farm workers and supporters who marched in the Yakima Valley April 4.

The demonstrators were supporting a strike by 60 tree pruners at Pyramid Orchards. The strikers, members of the United Farm Workers of Washington State, have been fighting to win a union contract since February 10. The strike began when Pyramid arbitrarily cut wages from $2.50 to $1.75 a tree. Most workers couldn’t earn the minimum wage at that rate.

The Pyramid strike has won wide support among farm workers here. Many drove by to wave support, as the marchers passed by apple and peach orchards, vineyards, and hops fields.

April 16, 1962

The report of two GI’s killed and two others missing in action on April 8 in South Vietnam is a grim foretaste of the heavier casualties to come if the Kennedy administration persists in its dirty war to save the bankrupt regime of dictator Ngo Dinh Diem.

As U.S. involvement deepens it will become impossible to cloak the real nature of what is going on there.

The March 16 issue of the British New Statesman carried this report from Saigon: “The area of American involvement was greatly extended with the setting up last month of the U.S. Military Assistance Command under General Paul Harkins. In addition to the 4,500 armed American personnel in South Vietnam, he has a strategic reserve in Okinawa described as a ‘staging area surpassing Korea as the scene of the greatest concentration of U.S. military power in Asia.’”

April 17, 1937

Hotel workers of six crafts voted overwhelmingly to strike in San Francisco as negotiations with hotel owners were broken off after two months of parleys.

The strike vote came as the culmination of a successful drive to organize the famous hotels of this city, with the owners refusing to consider the demands of workers for collective bargaining.

Revolting against long hours, short wages and bad conditions, hotel workers have been flocking into the unions since the culinary trades instituted an organizing campaign several months ago. Basic demands are preferential hiring and the agreement for all workers to join their respective unions within 15 days after the signing of contracts.

The unions’ negotiating committee found itself stalemated when the owners refused to accept the unions as the representatives of the hotel workers.  
Front page (for this issue) | Home | Text-version home