The hammer strikes

Syndicalism and gefilte fish

The Jewish Socialist Group has organised an event this week in London on “United Against Sweatshop Slavery: The 100th Anniversary of the Great 1912 Tailors Strike” – Wednesday night at the Bishopsgate Institute (scheduled to be in the same building as SWP/Respect renegades John Rees and Lindsey German doing a rather overpriced “A People’s History of London“, so be careful not to stray into the wrong room). Speakers include Donnacha DeLong, who blogs here. More details on Indymedia and the Facebook event. A couple of days later, on Sunday 27 May at 6pm, David Rosenberg of the Jewish Socialists’ Group will lead a walk through the radical history of the East End, focussing on the 1912 strike, starting at Freedom Books in Whitechapel – details on Indymedia.

Other events: in Dublin, the anarchist bookfair is at the weekend – details here.

Jews and the left

I’ll probably return to this at some point when I have more time, but the YIVO conference earlier this month on Jews and the left sounds to have been fascinating. Some coverage: The Tablet, American Thinker, Commentary, Forward. Related, and following up my last linky post, read Ralph Seliger on Did the kibbutz really fail, responding to Michael Lerner.

Bobism

Tendance Coatesy with a wonderful post on the Bob Avakian Institute.

Mother Jones

Great article about a wonderful woman on the WSM website, also in the new issue of their Workers Solidarity.

From the archives of struggle

Below the fold, via Entdinglichung. (more…)

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Poumicity

Left sectariana: Phoenix Class War post their “joke of the day”, on the Maoist wingnuts of the American RCP at Burning Man festival (note: not to be confused with the British ex-Trotskiyist party of the same name).

Memoires of a democratic socialist: on Michael Foot, Tony Benn and Roy Hattersley.

Tory Francophones: Tawfiq Chahboune posts a quotation from George Orwell on Tory MPs cheering as British ships taking aid to Republican Spain were sunk by the fascist Italian navy – Tawfiq asks if anyone can corroborate this. The resulting comment thread is of an exceptionally high standard, in particular the contributions of Michael Rosen.

Death of an anti-fascist: In this comment thread, Nick Wright also posts the Morning Star obit for its former correspondent Sam Lesser. It’s an odd piece of prose, which manages to smuggle in a good deal of petty and vulgar sectarianism for an obituary. It is also (in typical Morning Star fashion), oddly reticent about Stalinism. It notes that Lesser “was sent by the Daily Worker to cover the 1952 show-trial of Czechoslovakian Communist Party general secretary Rudolf Slansky and 13 other party leaders – an experience which left a deep scar”, but does not explain how he lived with this pain during the subsequent three decades he continued with the Morning Star, including coverage of Budapest in 1956 (where he replaced the great Peter Fryer) and Prague in 1968.

The Spanish cockpit: Darren points me in the direction of a long text I’m not sure if I’ve linked to before: “Spain Turns’ by Roberto, from the International Review, Vol.2 No.3, New York, April 1937. It’s long, and most certainly worth reading. The Socialist Standard adds these further reading recommendations: From the September 1936 issue of the Socialist Standard: The Civil War in Spain; From the May 1937 issue of the Socialist Standard: The SPGB and Spain; From Issue 18 of the journal Subversion (published 1996): Spain 1936, The End of Anarchist Syndicalism?; From the August 2006 issue of the Socialist Standard: For Whom The Bell Tolled.

Petain and the Jews: Modernity points us towards recent research on Vichy France and its shameful record.

This week’s dose of anti-communism: Roger Scruton from 1991.

Also from the archive: The Western Socialist on the Yom Kippur War (1973).

Finally, wearing badges is not enough.