Defending ukraine’s sovereignty, or Johnson’s? & Let’s not wait: a strike for higher pay is urgently needed!

 Defending ukraine’s sovereignty, or Johnson’s?

Liz - “Britannia Unchained” - Truss claims to be “upholding the sovereignty” of Ukraine.  Hauling the old British empire out of the dustbin of history and rattling its sabres, she is the most strident voice (even more so than Biden!) being raised against Putin’s border war exercises.

    So on Tuesday she let it be known that a Russian invasion “was imminent and highly likely”... and the media parroted this unquestioningly: it was to happen “tomorrow” or the next day.  If it doesn’t, no doubt it will be because Truss struck the fear of hell - or of British retaliation (with what?) - into Putin...

    It’s really funny (or would be if this wasn’t actual warmongering) how all of a sudden, “lying” Johnson, the clownish buffoon and his gang of unquestioning followers tied to his Brexit strings - who yesterday had no credibility - have now, “in the face of possible war” been given back their leadership-status.  And naturally, Starmer’s Labour is right behind them, “right” being the operative word.

    As to Truss, she is the one who said British workers are “lazy” and the cause of “Britannia” falling behind in the world. Being crassly ignorant - as she is - is no problem, apparently!  In fact it’s the best qualification there is for a ministerial position!

    So she seriously announced that the Baltic states will get help “through the Black sea” and what’s more, that Russia “would never have sovereignty over Voronezh and Rostov” which happen to be regions in Russia’s interior whose sovereignty was never in question.

    She’d be a laughing stock, but the problem is that politicians like Truss make decisions which can affect millions around the world.  Look what happened over Iraq (also based on “intelligence” from the US, which any “intelligent” person knew were lies): a devastating war which set the whole region alight and which has not ended yet...

    As for “sovereignty”, the planting of the Mauritian flag on the Chagos Islands this week was a reminder of just how much British governments respect it. All Chagossians were forcibly evicted from these islands between 1967 and 1973 - islands which the British state invaded in 1965, declaring them the “British Indian Ocean Territory” (!).  They then handed the largest, Diego Garcia, to the USA, where it set up an airbase, in use until this day. Even the UN declared this theft of sovereignty “illegal” in 2019. But that’s made not an ounce of difference. The Chagossians remain in exile, unable to return.

    Of course, Truss is unlikely even to know where the Chagos Islands are. What one can only hope is that the hyped-up policy she represents over Ukraine doesn’t inadvertently start a fire, in which its peoples - not the responsible politicians like her, who deserve it - get burnt.

 Let’s not wait: a strike for higher pay is urgently needed!

By now the public is used to government lies, whether over the EU, Covid, Ukraine, or indeed, the state of the economy.  So no, Britain hasn’t got the “fastest growing economy in the G7" - as Johnson boasts - and neither are more people employed than before the pandemic.  In fact 600,000 fewer are actually in jobs.

    That said, there certainly is “record” growth happening: workers are experiencing the highest jump in the cost of living in decades!

    And right now, no worker is getting a “real” pay rise, no matter what union leaders, like Unite’s Graham, might say about the “leverage” they’re using against bosses due to the (mainly Brexit-related) relative shortage of labour...  In fact pay rises are seriously lagging behind price rises: the Retail Price Index, already 7.5%, may reach 10% by April.

     Worse, for those on low pay or unemployed, benefit increases are based on September 2021’s inflation figure of 3.1%!

    As for Sunak’s £200 "help" with the 54% (£693) increase in energy costs (in fact a repayable loan!), this is really a subsidy to energy companies. In the meantime, NICs go up this April, cutting another £200+ off pay.  Then there's the £20/m Universal Credit Uplift which the low-paid and unemployed lost, last October.  All this means many more families not just choosing between eating and heating, but starving and freezing.

    Meanwhile, oil and gas companies, BP and Shell, just announced their highest profits (£24bn) in 8 years.  Shell is planning to hand back more than £6bn to shareholders immediately!  Yes, making the rich even richer.

    Government and media blame high energy prices on "lack of supply" or even blame Russia, which provides 40% of Europe's natural gas (but just 5% of Britain's).  Anything to avoid pointing the finger at the real culprits, profiteering bosses of oil, gas and energy companies which deliberately raised prices.

    What can the working class do about it?  Well, it can turn the bosses’ worst nightmares into reality: organise its full forces - within and across all sections and industries - to fight for higher pay.  Because together, no question, workers could win.