Zelensky’s welcome “aid” to Sunak

Workers' Fight workplace bulletin editorials
8 February 2023

By inviting Ukrainian president Zelensky to address the Commons on the same day as PMQs, Sunak ensured that every other burning question facing the population, and not just this country’s population, was pushed aside.  Even the terrible consequences of Monday’s earthquakes in Turkey and Syria were relegated.

    And no doubt as far as MPs were concerned, just as well!  The search and rescue team which arrived in Turkey on Wednesday, is made up of firefighters from 14 fire and rescue services…  yes, workers from the ranks of those who overwhelmingly voted to go on strike against their public sector “employer”, ultimately this same government, which refuses them a proper pay rise!

    As for PMQs, Sunak and Co., are hardly put on the spot by this phoney show-business of accountability.  But nevertheless, Labour’s Starmer had no questions for the PM this week.  Instead, he went even further than Sunak in his gruesome promotion of the ongoing, 12-month-long increasingly bloody and destructive Ukraine war.

    It’s estimated that 200,000 Russian soldiers, 120,000 Ukrainian soldiers and 30,000 Ukrainian civilians (neither side provides reliable figures) have already lost their lives since 24 February 2022.  Yes, acting as cannon fodder - as proxies - for the covert war of US/Nato leaders against the Putin-led Russian ruling apparatus in the Kremlin - and yes, at the terrible expense also, of the Russian population and its young and terrified army-recruits.

    Undoubtedly, the Ukrainian (but also the Russian) people, are the victims in this, the latest act of vicious inhumanity in the name of a degenerate capitalist, imperialist, system, to grab influence, territory and capture markets, in the name of profit.  Which is why it’s a war which the working class of any country - including Ukraine and Russia - cannot possibly support.

    Indeed, Zelensky’s invitation is Sunak’s contribution (along with a few tanks and jet-pilot training) to the professed US/Nato strategy to help the war continue until the “victory” of Ukraine.  But in fact it’s the victory of the (mainly) US arms industry - which has made vast profits nearing a trillion dollars since the start of this war - which they are cheering on.

    The other unchallenged profiteers of this war -already coining it in post-Covid, when they inflated their prices by 200% - are of course companies like Shell (£32bn profits for 2022) and BP which made £28bn - a historic record. Centrica (British Gas) has increased its profits 8-fold in a year! And all these superprofits, despite Sunak’s (mini) windfall tax!

    As for the working class, our energy bills go up again in April.  The government subsidy paid to householders hasn’t kept the wolf from anyone’s door, but it did add to the energy giants’ profits!

    Yet we are told, for instance, that to give nurses a pay rise, the government would have to rob Peter to pay Paul - that is, take the money out of patient care!  Do they think we’re prepared to swallow such nonsense?  It’s time to show them - all together in one big strike wave - that we will not!