Spain

Catalonia: Historic demonstration in Barcelona in support of refugees

‘Volem acollir’ 
Last Saturday, 18 February, saw Barcelona hold the biggest demonstration in Europe in support of refugees under the slogan ‘Volem acollir’ (We want to welcome them). Between 300,000 and 500,000 people according to the organisers, Casa Nostra, Casa Vostra (Our home is your home) and other organisations and groups that support the refugees (160,000 according to the city police) flooded the streets to show their solidarity with people who risk their lives every day to escape the barbarism caused by imperialism, as well as call on governments to welcome them and grant them asylum now. An idea of just how big the mobilisation was can be gauged from the fact the starting point of the demonstration was still crowded when a large part of the demonstrators had already reached the end.

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Sweden

Sweden: Who could believe it?

What is behind Trump’s attack? “You see what happened last night in Sweden.? Sweden!…Who could believe it? Sweden.” Those comments in typical Trump style, made in a speech in Melbourne, Florida, Friday 10 February, have caused a worldwide debate. It was not a mistake, but a conscious mentioning of Sweden by Donald Trump. In the following sentence, he said: “Sweden! They took in large numbers”. The purpose was to support his wall and travel ban, pointing at refugees and muslims as criminal.

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Ireland Republic

Britain/Ireland: Dublin’s #JobstownNotGuilty

Defend the right to protest – stop this political vendetta! 
“We are more akin to a banana republic, and the rotten nature of the Irish state has been exposed.” These were the words of TD (MP) and Socialist Party member Ruth Coppinger in the Irish Parliament on 15 February as she rose to question Taoiseach (prime minister) Enda Kenny.

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Ireland Republic

Ireland: A web of intrigue sparks government crisis

Smear campaign against a prominent police whistleblower. 
Over the last number of weeks, the Irish government has been shaken by a controversy surrounding the outrageous smearing of a prominent Garda (police) whistleblower, Maurice McCabe.  At the core of this smear campaign was the charge that McCabe was guilty of sexual abuse of a young child.

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History

February revolution 1917: What lessons for today?

23 February 1917 (8 March in today’s calendar) marked the beginning of the socialist revolution in Russia, which sparked a revolutionary wave that would travel around the world. In the Socialist (paper of the Socialist Party) in 2007, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales) general secretary Peter Taaffe analysed the lessons of February for the working class today and how the leadership of the Bolshevik party, particularly Lenin and Trotsky, was decisive in ensuring the victory of the revolution in October.

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Yemen

Yemen: International protests in support of TOTAL/G4S workers

Solidarity spreads for victims of wage robbery and killing by multinational corporations. 
On Friday, February 17, several sections and supporters of the CWI took part in protests against the French energy company TOTAL, for its role in leaving workers, employed to protect its sites in Yemen, unpaid for a year and counting; and for its presumed role in the killing of three of these workers last December.

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Netherlands

Netherlands: Anti-immigrant Freedom Party leading polls ahead of general elections

Only a choice between the “regular” and far-right?
Dutch voters go to the polls on on 15 March, with a record 28 parties on the ballot paper. Nearly half the parties have only been in existence since 2014. The largest traditional parties are expected to lose many voters (the main three parties are expected to win just around 40% of votes, down from 89 per cent three decades ago). At the same time, Geert Wilders’ right-wing, anti-immigrant PVV (Freedom Party) is expected to win the most seats.

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Europa

Estado español: Pablo Iglesias logra un contundente triunfo en Vistalegre II

¡Es la hora de volver a la movilización en las calles! 
El intento de desplazar a Pablo Iglesias de la dirección de Podemos ha fracasado estrepitosamente. A pesar de todos los recursos invertidos y del arrope que los medios de comunicación han proporcionado a Íñigo Errejón y sus seguidores, las bases de Podemos se han manifestado de manera inequívoca con una participación histórica de 155.000 inscritos. Iglesias ha obtenido cerca del 90% de los votos a su candidatura como secretario general, más del 60% en la lista que encabezaba para el Consejo Ciudadano, y más de 50% en todos los documentos que presentaba su equipo. Para entender lo que supone esta victoria basta con leer la prensa capitalista o escuchar lo que dicen los informativos de las grandes cadenas. Su rabia por este triunfo chorrea en cada línea, en cada frase, en cada insulto y descalificación. Y no es para menos. La maniobra de la clase dominante por controlar definitivamente Podemos, asimilarla como una formación socialdemócrata clásica y apuntalar la paz social, se ha estrellado contra la voluntad de decenas de miles de luchadores.

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