Friday, July 06, 2007

Friday boycott round-up: The T&G


Earlier this week, I reported that the trade union Amicus has passed an anti-Israel, but not pro-boycott, motion. Now it's sibling-union, the Transport and General Workers Union, with whom it is about to unite with in the imaginatively named Unite union, has passed an actually pro-boycott motion. The full text of the composite motion is on the Alliance for Workers' Liberty site (the AWL opposed the motion - see their anti-boycott leaflet here.)

Gene at HP notes that the T&G's Communications Director is Andrew Murray, Communist Party of Britain member and Stop The War bureaucrat...
The STWC has organized a number of small demonstrations against Israel, in which many participants expressed support for the reactionary Hezbollah and Hamas.

I can't help wondering whether Communist Party member Murray, had he been around and following the Party line in the late 1940s, would have organized pro-Israel demonstrations back then. After all the Soviet Union and its satellites voted to support the United Nations' two-state partition plan in 1947. And the Soviets approved client-state Czechoslovakia's arms shipments to the new Israeli army in 1948's War of Independence against the invading Arab forces.

It was only the Soviets decided it was to their advantage to cultivate the Arab regimes that the line changed and people like Murray became ardent anti-Zionists.

I liked Will's post on this:
In further Trade Union news... there is going to be a merger between UNISON and UNITE.

This merged TU will be named EXCLUDE.

Bit of an update: Meanwhile, trade unionists in Iran endure real oppression at the hands of the Iranian state.
Added: A JC article Arieh sent me has more from the T&G hacks.
Barry Camfield, deputy general-secretary of the union, told delegates at its annual conference in Brighton that Britain had stood alone against Hitler and had liberated Jewish victims of the Holocaust. “So we will not have the Israeli state telling us that the boycott is antisemitic,” he said.
Nationalist bullshit.

On the UCU boycott, the report mentions:
More than 100 academics from around the world have signalled their opposition to any academic boycott by responding to a call from the University of Haifa to be symbolically appointed as affiliated professors. Many of them are from Britain, including Professor Shalom Lappin, one of the first to resign from the University and College Union (UCU) after it passed its academic-boycott resolution on May 30.

Meanwhile, the UCU leadership has clarified its position, in quite a sensiblw way.

And, across the pond, Structural Subversion reports on some ardent anti-Zionists picketing a food co-op because it sells Israeli humus.

Campaigns: The official Jewish community campaign is organising an event on the evening of the 10th with Yuli Tamar,* while Engage's rally is the following night, the 11th. The latter has just finalised its programme, which looks good: John Mann MP, Jonathan Freedland, David Hirsh, Louise Ellman MP, Jane Ashworth, Robert Fine, John Strawson, Eric Lee, Eve Garrard, Tim Dawson, Maureen Lipman, Howard Jacobson, Anthony Julius.

*UPDATE: Yuli Tamer talk cancelled, as she has to cut her UK visit short.

Other blog comment: Westminster Wisdom.

Previous boycott round-up here.

1 comment:

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