Western Europe

Thousands of jobs threatened at Bombardier plants in Belfast and Casablanca

By Steve James, 7 May 2019

Bombardier’s move is the next phase of a global restructuring necessitated by ferocious competition in the world airline industry.

The German ruling class fears the spectre of socialism

By Johannes Stern, 6 May 2019

What the ruling class fears is the growing social and political opposition of workers and young people, which is breaking out in Germany, Europe and around the world.

Macron government fabrication of “yellow vest” hospital attack in Paris collapses

By Will Morrow, 4 May 2019

The government’s crude fabrication was aimed at casting the “yellow vest” protests as criminal and morally reprehensible, and justifying police state violence.

UK: Defence minister’s sacking escalates Tory crisis amid rising UK/US tensions

By Robert Stevens, 4 May 2019

Williamson was sacked after an inquiry into who leaked the deliberations of a National Security Council meeting that approved Chinese telecom giant Huawei’s participation in the UK’s 5G data network.

Berlin: Meeting held at Humboldt University to defend Julian Assange

By our reporters, 4 May 2019

On Tuesday, several dozen students and workers gathered at Humboldt University in Berlin to protest the persecution of Julian Assange and discuss the political and historical background to the attack on the courageous journalist.

French Yellow vest protesters travel to London to defend Julian Assange

4 May 2019

Protesters travelled across the English Channel to demand freedom for the persecuted Wikileaks journalist, who was sentenced Wednesday to spend 50 weeks in Belmarsh Prison while he is threatened with rendition to the United States.

The Spanish elections and the struggle against authoritarian rule

By the Sozialistische Gleichheitspartei, Socialist Equality Party and Parti de l’égalité socialiste, 27 April 2019

A struggle against capitalist reaction can only proceed through the building of a new revolutionary leadership in the Spanish and international working class.

International finance backs Socialist Party in Spain’s April 28 elections

By Alejandro López, 26 April 2019

European Union sources are warning of prolonged political instability and looking to the PSOE and Podemos for an answer.

Germany: SGP European election campaign wins support for Julian Assange in Stuttgart

By our reporters, 26 April 2019

Teams from the Sozialistische Gleichheitspartei (Socialist Equality Party, SGP) recently spoke with workers and youth in Stuttgart, inviting them to its April 27 election meeting and distributed WSWS material calling for freedom for Julian Assange.

Protest in London’s Parliament Square demands release of Julian Assange

By our reporters, 25 April 2019

The lively demonstration organised by the Julian Assange Defence Campaign was supported by the Socialist Equality Party and World Socialist Web Site.

Grenfell fire survivors forced onto general housing waiting list

By Alice Summers, 25 April 2019

The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea Council has announced the ending of the programme to rehouse Grenfell survivors.

Police arrest over 1,000 climate change protesters in London

By Robert Stevens, 23 April 2019

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has issued no statement condemning the mass arrest of peaceful protesters.

Privatisation of UK’s National Health Service escalates

By Ben Trent, 23 April 2019

An investigation found that over 1 million patients were forced to seek alternative treatment in the preceding five years due to the closure of nearly 450 GP surgeries.

UK home secretary demands climate change protesters face “full force of the law”

By Laura Tiernan, 20 April 2019

More than 682 climate change protesters have been arrested since Monday.

No to calls for “national unity” after the burning of Notre Dame in Paris

By Alex Lantier, 20 April 2019

The cathedral’s fate is an object lesson in the urgent need for workers to expropriate the irresponsible and parasitic financial aristocracy that dominates official public life.

European election: SGP holds its second campaign meeting in Frankfurt-Main

By our correspondents, 20 April 2019

In Frankfurt, SGP Chairman Ulrich Rippert highlighted the importance of the International Committee of the Fourth International and its perspective of a United Socialist States of Europe.

Notre-Dame cathedral in Paris devastated by fire

By Alex Lantier, 16 April 2019

A tall column of thick, yellowish smoke that poured out of the cathedral, consumed by flames, cast a pall over the city of Paris Monday evening.

“The fight starts now to prevent his extradition to the United States!”

Supporters to rally in defence of Assange outside Belmarsh Prison, London

By our reporters, 13 April 2019

The protests organised by the Julian Assange Defence Committee and supported by the Socialist Equality Party (UK) and the WSWS will be held from 4pm today.

German interior minister tables Intelligence Services “Enabling Act”

By Wolfgang Weber, 13 April 2019

The new law would provide the three intelligence agencies with almost unlimited powers to monitor and spy on domestic and foreign citizens.

UK: Jury fails to reach verdict against top police officer over Hillsborough football disaster

By Barry Mason, 9 April 2019

Former Yorkshire police chief superintendent David Duckenfield was charged with the criminal offence of gross negligence manslaughter of 95 of the supporters.

UN Special Rapporteur: US extradition of Assange would be violation of international law

By Oscar Grenfell, 6 April 2019

The Ecuadorian regime, and its co-conspirators in the British and US governments, are engaged in a sordid and illegal conspiracy to terminate the political asylum of the WikiLeaks founder.

Supporters oppose eviction of Julian Assange outside London’s Ecuadorian embassy

By Paul Mitchell, 6 April 2019

Defenders of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange gathered outside the Ecuadorian embassy in central London yesterday, after a warning that he faces eviction from the building where he sought political asylum in 2012 “within hours to days.”

Surrounding land left highly toxic after Grenfell Tower inferno

By Thomas Scripps, 6 April 2019

The publication of Professor Anna Stec’s full study details “significant environmental contamination” in the densely populated area around Grenfell Tower.

The political implications of the Corbyn/May Brexit talks

By Chris Marsden, 5 April 2019

The talks on an alternative Brexit deal between UK Conservative Prime Minister Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn decisively refute all claims that his election as leader of the Labour Party offered a way forward for working people.

“No deal” Brexit threatened after May’s EU withdrawal agreement rejected for third time

By Robert Stevens, 30 March 2019

Labour’s nominally “left” leader Jeremy Corbyn is working to ensure that the gravest peacetime crisis in the history of British imperialism is resolved through the worm-eaten parliamentary system, with the working class left as spectators.

Far-right party wins most votes in Dutch provincial elections

By Harm Zonderland, 30 March 2019

Provincial councils were elected in the Netherlands on March 20, with the far-right Forum for Democracy (FvD), led by Thierry Baudet, winning 12 out of 75 seats.

210 Mass layoffs at Ford

30 March 2019

Build rank-and-file factory committees to fight Honda job losses!

By Steve James, 30 March 2019

Today’s demonstration shows workers are ready to fight and there is widespread support for such a struggle in the car industry in the rest of the UK and internationally.

“Brexit is a shambles—it will affect so many people in many ways”

By our reporters, 25 March 2019

Reporters for the World Socialist Web Site spoke to demonstrators at Saturday’s anti-Brexit protest in London.

French “yellow vest” protests defy threat of army repression

By Anthony Torres, 25 March 2019

As a mass movement of workers and youth threatens to bring down the Algerian military regime, the government is desperate to rapidly strangle protests inside France.

French army receives authorization to shoot “yellow vest” protesters

By Alex Lantier, 23 March 2019

General Bruno Le Ray announced that the rules of engagement for soldiers sent today against the “yellow vests” allow them to “go as far as opening fire.”

Answer Brexit with the struggle for socialism throughout Europe!

By the Socialist Equality Party (UK), 23 March 2019

Far from trusting their fate to Merkel, Macron, Juncker and Tusk, those protesting today must ally themselves with the European working class now waging political and social battles against the EU and its member state governments.

Ford announces 5,000 job cuts in Germany

By Marianne Arens, 23 March 2019

The mass lay-offs are a component of Ford’s global onslaught on jobs known as the Fitness Programme, which aims to eliminate 25,000 jobs around the world.

Leipzig Book Fair: Mehring Verlag presents new German edition of The Heritage We Defend

By our correspondents, 23 March 2019

David North introduced the new German edition of The Heritage We Defend at the Leipzig Book Fair on Saturday.

Don McCullin at Tate Britain in London

Veteran photographer calls on young people to chronicle today’s “social wars”

By Paul Mitchell, 23 March 2019

“There isn’t a city in England you can’t go to and find some poverty and unhappiness and tragedies.”—Don McCullin

“I think it’s the capitalists who are doing this”

Workers in Leipzig speak against the growth of the far-right

By our reporters, 22 March 2019

For the last two weeks, members of the SEP and IYSSE have been speaking with workers and youth throughout Leipzig about today’s meeting, “The lessons of the 1930s and the fight against the extreme right.”

Macron sends the French army against anti-austerity protests

By Alex Lantier, 22 March 2019

The move is a major step toward the implementation of police-state forms of rule in France, as part of a global onslaught against democratic rights.

Youth at global climate protests speak out on capitalism, socialism and scientific planning

By our reporters, 16 March 2019

Reporting teams from the World Socialist Web Site interviewed students who protested in countries around the world for action on climate change.

Corbyn props up May government after more Brexit vote defeats

By Robert Stevens, 16 March 2019

Ever since May took office as a minority dependent on the DUP, she has headed a government of permanent crisis, with her survival dependent on Labour leader Corbyn’s suppression of the class struggle amid a rising tide of anti-Tory sentiment.

Mehring Books exhibits at London Book Fair

By our reporters, 16 March 2019

The Mehring Books stand attracted a great deal of attention and interest, and the association of Mehring Books with the heritage of Trotskyism and its concern with fundamental historical questions was apparent.

69th Berlin International Film Festival—Part 7

German films: Economic and social tensions on the rise

By Bernd Reinhardt, 16 March 2019

The pursuit of naked profit interests and government-imposed austerity dominate an ever broader swath of life. Some of the German films at this year’s Berlinale point to the consequences.

European Central Bank announces major policy reversal

By Nick Beams, 8 March 2019

The decision by the ECB came as a result of what President Marion Draghi characterised as “substantial” downward revision of growth estimates for the region.

Sixteenth week of protests: French “yellow vests” support strikes in North Africa

By Anthony Torres and Kumaran Ira, 4 March 2019

The “yellow vests” again took to the streets to demonstrate against French President Emmanuel Macron as protests mount against Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika.

Mass demonstration by public-sector workers in Berlin

By our reporters, 4 March 2019

Thousands of teachers and social workers in Berlin held a two-day warning strike last week.

UK: The human cost of the right-to-buy housing crisis

By Charles Hixson, 4 March 2019

Local authorities now pay private landlords to house homeless families.

Workers, youth denounce police decision to close investigation of desecration of Marx’s grave

By our reporters, 4 March 2019

“Marx’s ideas are important for showing us how to understand the current world and society… and how to build a new one.”

Deportations from Germany to Maghreb states rise sharply

By Elisabeth Zimmermann, 2 March 2019

Deportations from Germany to the Maghreb states rose 35 percent in one year, and 14-fold since 2015.

No to the witch-hunt of Chris Williamson!

Oppose the Blairites’ bogus claims of “left anti-Semitism”!

By Chris Marsden, 2 March 2019

This witch-hunt will not stop at Williamson and a few high-profile figures. A lynch-mob has been unleashed that will inevitably target thousands of Labour members.

British retail sector continues shedding thousands of jobs

By Simon Whelan, 2 March 2019

Some 19,000 high street jobs have been lost or put at risk in the two months since Christmas.

France’s New Anti-capitalist Party sabotages fight against Ford Blanquefort plant closure

By Will Morrow, 2 March 2019

Leading NPA member Philip Poutou, a Ford employee and union official at Blanquefort, is seeking to prevent any fight by workers against the closure.

UK Labour leader Corbyn endorses Blairite call for second Brexit referendum

By Robert Stevens, 27 February 2019

This week’s events signify that the Blairites have de facto total control over party policy, just over three years after they were annihilated by Corbyn in the leadership contest.

Attend March 10 Solidarity Vigil in London for Julian Assange

By Robert Stevens, 25 February 2019

The SEP (UK) calls on all defenders of civil liberties and democratic rights, all opponents of imperialist wars for regime change, to attend the March 10 vigil and make it known in your workplaces, campuses and schools.

Resolution: Oppose the promotion of eugenics and pseudo-science at Cambridge University!

25 February 2019

The following resolution was adopted by a meeting in Cambridge convened by the International Youth and Students for Social Equality (UK), on Saturday February 23, 2019.

Labour right and Tories unite in new parliamentary group

By Robert Stevens, 23 February 2019

The formation of the IG confirms there are no principled political difference between the Tories and the Blairite right—including the dozens of MPs who remain in the party thanks to the refusal of Corbyn to drive them out.

Germany: Public transport strike paralyzes Berlin

By our reporters, 16 February 2019

For much of Friday, all subways and trams in the capital stood still and most buses remained in their depots.

Munich Security Conference

German defence minister advocates German-European war policy

By Johannes Stern, 16 February 2019

Almost 75 years after the end of World War II, the imperialist powers are openly preparing for a new round of military conflicts.

Brexit divisions lead to intensified discussions on Conservative and Labour Party splits

By Robert Stevens, 16 February 2019

Theresa May suffered a further defeat in Parliament over her Brexit policy, while Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn was further undermined by a sizeable rebellion by the party’s Blairite right wing.

A reply to Britain’s Community Security Trust

By Chris Marsden, 16 February 2019

The following is a reply by Socialist Equality Party (UK) national secretary Chris Marsden to Mark Gardner, deputy chief executive & communications director at the pro-Zionist Community Security Trust.

UK: Anti-Semitism witch-hunt provokes backlash in Labour Party

By Robert Stevens, 12 February 2019

The opposition of Corbyn et al. to all attempts to expel the Labour right has once again handed the initiative to the Blairites, despite Labour’s membership in overwhelming numbers hating everything they say and do.

UK rail workers demand reinstatement of conductor sacked for opposing Driver Only Operated trains

By our reporter, 11 February 2019

The SEP and the WSWS warn rail workers that the RMT bureaucracy cannot be trusted to defend the victimised worker, any more than they can to oppose the introduction of Driver Only Operated trains.

The CGT’s “national strike”: French unions seek to strangle the “yellow vest” protests

By our reporters, 9 February 2019

For the unions, the day of action was an opportunity for its base of officials and bureaucrats to meet with “yellow vest” protesters and seek to gain control of their movement.

German workers support rally against mass layoffs in Detroit

By our reporters, 9 February 2019

The WSWS received these messages of support for the February 9 demonstration from bus drivers, auto workers, and a tram mechanic.

John Pilger to speak at March 3 Sydney rally to defend Julian Assange

By the Socialist Equality Party (Australia), 2 February 2019

As well as John Pilger, the Sydney rally will be addressed by SEP National Secretary James Cogan. Cogan will also be the main speaker at the demonstration in Melbourne on March 10.

German defence report sparks hysterical campaign for increased military spending

By Johannes Stern, 2 February 2019

The ruling class and its parties are pursing massive rearmament plans and preparing Germany for war.

An appeal from a UK rail worker for a joint fight of rail, bus and tram workers across Europe

By our correspondent, 28 January 2019

The WSWS has been sent this appeal from a UK rail worker to colleagues employed by state run Nederlandse Spoorwegen (Dutch Railways). It calls for a joint fight against its privatised arm, Abellio, which is currently attacking jobs and working conditions across its private UK rail franchises.

Former leader Alex Salmond’s arrest threatens to tear Scottish National Party apart

By Steve James, 26 January 2019

Whatever the outcome of the legal case against Salmond, the SNP is being torn apart by factional infighting.

Fascist deputies disrupt Holocaust memorial in Germany

By Peter Schwarz and Andre Damon, 26 January 2019

On Wednesday, deputies from the neo-fascist Alternative for Germany walked out of a Holocaust remembrance ceremony in the state parliament of Bavaria.

Successful election result for IYSSE at Humboldt University in Berlin

By the IYSSE chapter at Humboldt University, 26 January 2019

The IYSSE increased its share of the vote by a third, from 3.75 percent to over 5 percent, and will be represented by three deputies in the student parliament.

Oppose French unions’ attempts to strangle the “yellow vest” protests!

By Anthony Torres and Alex Lantier, 26 January 2019

The Pabloite New Anticapitalist Party’s calls for the unions to take over the “yellow vest” protests amounts to an attempt to strangle growing opposition among workers.

Germany, France step up military, police alliance with Aachen treaty

By Alex Lantier, 23 January 2019

The treaty aims to build a German-French axis as the centre of a European Union rivaling America militarily and planning the repression of workers across Europe.

The Brexit crisis and the struggle for socialism

By Chris Marsden, 23 January 2019

The answer to austerity is not a pro-capitalist Labour government dedicated to rebuilding “national unity” across the Brexit divide, but the unification of workers in Britain with the working class across the continent in the fight for the United Socialist States of Europe.

Ford workers at Bridgend in Wales facing 1,000 job losses

By Barry Mason, 21 January 2019

The trade unions act as management partners and are doing nothing to oppose the job losses.

Macron offers “great national debate” as trap for French yellow vest protesters

By Anthony Torres, 21 January 2019

In a letter to the French people, Macron offered a choice of which social programs to cut.

070 Macron and yellow vests

19 January 2019

Factional warfare hots up after collapse of May’s European Union Brexit deal

By Robert Stevens, 19 January 2019

Led by the Blairite wing of the Labour, Pro-Remain politicians calculated that the decks would now be cleared for them to campaign for a second “People’s Vote” to overturn the 2016 referendum.

UK parliament votes down Prime Minister May’s Brexit deal

By Robert Stevens and Chris Marsden, 16 January 2019

In response to the resounding rejection of May’s proposal, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has called a vote of no confidence for Wednesday.

France’s mass “yellow vest” protests continue to grow in 2019

By Alex Lantier, 14 January 2019

Demonstrations this Saturday grew significantly compared with last week, amid rising anger at French President Emmanuel Macron.

Jaguar Land Rover announces nearly 5,000 UK job losses in global restructuring

By Robert Stevens, 12 January 2019

Last October, JLR posted losses of £90 million and has seen a collapse in sales by nearly 50 percent in its main and most profitable market, China.

Security personnel at German airports continue protest strikes

By K. Nesan and Marianne Arens, 12 January 2019

The work stoppages make clear the enormous anger of security staff and their willingness to fight.

Was the hack of German politicians data supported by the state?

By Ulrich Rippert, 12 January 2019

Out of all the parties represented in parliament, only politicians from one remained unaffected by the hack: the far-right AfD.

The struggle against austerity and the fight for the United Socialist States of Europe

By the Socialist Equality Party (UK), 12 January 2019

The SEP insists that the answer to austerity in the UK is not the election of a pro-capitalist Labour government, but the unification of the working class across the continent in the struggle for socialism.

Socialist Equality Party takes legal action against surveillance by German secret service

By the Sozialistische Gleichheitspartei, 10 January 2019

Dr. Peer Stolle, the lawyer for the Sozialistische Gleichheitspartei, has submitted formal notice in writing to the German Federal Agency for the Protection of the Constitution, which is published here.

Report: Police gave neo-Nazi rioters free rein in Chemnitz, Germany

By Martin Nowak, 10 January 2019

An internal police report makes clear that although the police were well informed about the activities of the far right in Chemnitz, they did nothing to stop them.

Growing “yellow vest” protests defy French police repression

By Anthony Torres, 7 January 2019

The protest Saturday, the first day of action of French “yellow vest” protesters in 2019, mobilized substantially larger forces than the last protests of 2018.

German media demand accelerated rearmament

By Peter Schwarz, 7 January 2019

Editorials in leading German publications are marked by a mixture of fear and aggression as the new year begins.

UK Integrity Initiative heavily involved in Skripal affair

By Robert Stevens, 7 January 2019

Leaked documents indicate that the moves against Russia over the Skripal affair were scripted well in advance.

Demands surge for Britain to free WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange

By James Cogan, 22 December 2018

John Pilger told an online vigil: “Julian is a touchstone for opposition to so much of what is happening in our world right now—the rise of fascism, the threat of nuclear war.”

UK: Half of Royal College of Nursing leadership re-elected after being forced out

By Ajanta Silva, 22 December 2018

The re-elected union functionaries played a crucial role in selling a rotten pay deal to their members earlier this year, after conspiring with other unions and the government.

Her photos shed light on history: The outstanding work of photographer Maria Austria (1915-75)

By Verena Nees, 22 December 2018

Her work deserves to be exhibited in one of Germany’s or Austria’s major museums, not least because she is the source of the only photographic record of the hiding place of Anne Frank and her family before deportation to Auschwitz.

UK government’s role in anti-Corbyn campaign exposed

By Robert Stevens, 11 December 2018

The Integrity Initiative (II), funded by the UK, US governments and NATO, has played a central role in the campaign against the Labour Party leader.

Which way forward for France’s “yellow vest” protests?

By Alex Lantier, 10 December 2018

The critical question is the independent organization of the working class, in France and internationally, in the preparation of a European general strike.

The “yellow vests”: A movement of workers against social inequality

By our reporters, 10 December 2018

In this video, workers participating in France’s “yellow vests” demonstrations explain their demands and appeal for international support.

French government threatens bloody crackdown on “yellow vest” protest

By Alex Lantier and Francis Dubois, 8 December 2018

Amid rising popular support for demonstrations against austerity and inequality, French officials are warning they will stop at nothing to halt the protests.

Still no justice as phase one of Grenfell Tower fire inquiry closes

By Paul Bond, 8 December 2018

The inquiry was never intended to bring the guilty to justice and is being overseen and directed by the very capitalist state apparatus and its political representatives that are responsible for turning Grenfell Tower into a death trap.

UK: University and College Union seeks to demobilise pay dispute

By Simon Whelan and Robert Stevens, 8 December 2018

The UCU, past masters at isolating and demobilising struggles over pay and job losses, finally authorised a token pay strike at the end of November—at just six institutions.

Mobilize the working class against Macron!

By Alex Lantier, 5 December 2018

The critical task facing protests against austerity and inequality in France is to expand the struggle more broadly into the French and international working class.

Britain’s highest paid CEO built fortune on online gambling

By Jean Shaoul, 5 December 2018

Last year, Denise Coates raked in an obscene £265 million, up from £199 million the year before, based on salary and perks, nearly 10,000 times more than the average UK salary.

French protests spark media demands for Facebook censorship

By Andre Damon, 5 December 2018

Sections of the press in France and the United States have seized upon the “yellow vest” demonstrations to directly demand the suppression of popular opposition on social media.

Bank of England warns “no-deal” Brexit would be worse than 2008 crash

Labour pledges to rescue British capitalism

By Robert Stevens, 3 December 2018

The "worst case" scenario presumes there would be custom checks on the UK’s border for goods, with the UK unable to reach new trade deals with the EU or other countries until 2023.

German trade union federation defends Hartz IV

By Ulrich Rippert, 3 December 2018

The SPD is concerned only with cosmetics and a possible change of name, because Hartz IV is now associated with mass poverty, state harassment, cheap wages and social inequality.