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Vol. 75/No. 22      June 6, 2011

25, 50 and 75 years ago
June 6, 1986
A week of brutal attacks by South African government troops, cops, and government-backed vigilantes has destroyed much of the so-called squatter township of Crossroads, killing at least 30 people and leaving some 30,000 people homeless.

“The vigilantes set fire to homes as they went,” the New York Times reported.

The Times portrayed the battle as a clash between “conservatives” and “radicals” within the township but the target of the attack was the great majority of the township’s population, who have been living in Crossroads in defiance of the apartheid regime and who have participated in the nationwide anti-apartheid upsurge.  
June 5, 1961
The Fair Play for Cuba Committee has issued a call for relaxation of the ban on travel to Cuba to permit 500 student “peace corps” volunteers to spend the summer working in Cuba.

Bert Wainer, of the FPCC Student Council newsletter, said the call was issued in response to several hundred students who had expressed a deep sense of shame for the recent CIA-sponsored invasion of Cuba. The unofficial “peace corps” would repair some of the damage inflicted by U.S. planes and tanks during the ill-fated invasion.

Wainer said many students had expressed a wish to visit families of Cubans murdered by CIA-armed mercenaries and of those killed by explosions and sabotage within Cuba.  
June 6, 1936
One million French workers have occupied 500 key plants, shops, mines and factories across the whole of France. Socialist Premier Leon Blum, supported by the French Stalinist party and the General Confederation of Labor, has rushed through a “settlement” of their immediate demands.

The tremendous strike movement hurls the lie into the teeth of the creators of the People’s Front who declare that the French proletariat is not yet ripe for power. It was the great leftward swing of the masses which piled up the great People’s Front majority in the recent elections. It was the same swing, moving way beyond the leaders of the two big parties, which produced the great strikes of the past fortnight.  
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