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Vol. 81/No. 22      June 5, 2017

(lead article, Communist League statement)

‘Speak out against UK rulers’ attack on rights!’

The following statement by Peter Clifford, Communist League candidate for Parliament for Manchester Gorton, was released May 24.

Working people suffered a double blow here May 22.

The reactionary, murderous attack on children and families at the Manchester Arena that killed 22 and injured 120 was totally repugnant to working people.

And the capitalist rulers will use this, as have their counterparts across Europe and in the U.S., to stoke anti-Muslim prejudice and to insist that the need to fight “terrorism” justifies their wars in the Middle East.

Working people and defenders of political rights need to speak out against the rulers’ efforts to use the brutal attack to rationalize assaults on political rights.

The government, with cross party support, is deliberately using this attack to beat the drum of “we British.” Conservative, Labour and other bourgeois candidates contesting for Parliament suspended partisan campaigning. Theresa May stated that “our values, our country, and our way of life will always prevail.” But the working class shares no common values and no way of life with the rulers — we face social devastation at home, attacks on rights, scapegoating of Muslims and wars abroad.

The rulers have deployed troops and armed cops on the streets. In France President Emmanuel Macron says he will once again extend the 18-month-long state of emergency, under which demonstrations have been banned and police raids against immigrants have been stepped up. Washington has moved to impose travel restrictions on people from predominantly Muslim countries.

The government has announced plans to strengthen its Prevent strategy. Set up in 2005, this requires local councils, schools and health services to report anyone they think voices “extremist views.” Labour’s Jeremy Corbyn complained this is focused on Muslims, but instead of calling for it to be shut down, he calls for Prevent to target everyone. Labour and Tories are vying in the election campaign for who will build up the police the most.

The rulers in London — and in Washington — have rained terror on working people worldwide: in Ireland, in Hiroshima, in Vietnam, in the Middle East and much more.

They are driven to attack our political rights today because they fear that the carnage the crisis of their capitalist system is bringing down on working people is leading us toward struggle — class struggle. Islamic State is a reactionary anti-working-class outfit. It falsely claims to act in the name of Muslims, instilling fear and divisions among working people. It fills the vacuum created by the disasters for working people wrought by the seemingly endless imperialist “regime change” wars in the Middle East — wars that are an extension of the capitalist rulers’ assault on working people at home.

Working people need an independent road forward, rejecting any idea that we have common class interests with the capitalist rulers. We need to build solidarity and unity. Join the Communist League to build a revolutionary party to lead the fight for workers power.  
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