World News

Mass shooting in Strasbourg kills 3, wounds 12 before “yellow vest” protest

By Alex Lantier, 13 December 2018

The French ruling elite is already seizing upon the attack to trample democratic rights with demands that “yellow vest” protesters abandon their protests against Macron.

UK: May staggers on as more than a third of Tory MPs oppose her

By Robert Stevens, 13 December 2018

The vote against her by her hard-Brexit wing, combined with the loss of support from the 10 Democratic Unionist Party MPs, confirms that May’s days are numbered.

Democrats downplay Google censorship at congressional hearing

By Andre Damon, 13 December 2018

The principal targets of censorship by the Internet companies, working with the US intelligence agencies, are left-wing, anti-war and socialist political viewpoints.

German daily accuses Macron of surrender to “yellow mob”

By Peter Schwarz, 13 December 2018

The German business press reacted indignantly to French President Macron’s attempt to appease the “yellow vest” protest movement with social concessions.

German army to acquire new tank battalion

By Johannes Stern, 13 December 2018

The expansion of its tank divisions is part of Germany’s comprehensive plans for the upgrading of all of its military forces.

Sri Lankan plantation workers defy union and continue to strike

By Pani Wijesiriwardena, 13 December 2018

Expressing their determination to fight, workers held protests throughout the plantation district on Wednesday, the day after the union announced the end of the stoppage.

Ford executives in Argentina convicted on 1970s torture charges

By Bill Van Auken, 13 December 2018

The Ford directors fingered militant workers to the military dictatorship’s police and helped set up a torture center inside the automaker’s Argentine plant.

Caterpillar to close plant in Joliet, Illinois

By George Marlowe and Marcus Day, 13 December 2018

Despite posting record third-quarter profits, heavy equipment manufacturing giant Caterpillar plans to close its plant in Joliet, Illinois, laying off hundreds.

Limited movement in US-China trade talks

By Nick Beams, 13 December 2018

Trump’s first major public comment on the arrest of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou has blown apart the pretence it had nothing to do with the US trade war against China.

Russian workers strike against social misery and austerity

By Clara Weiss, 13 December 2018

The crackdown on the strike in Kamchatka reflects the fear within the Russian oligarchy that the development of the class struggle internationally will sooner rather than later drive Russian workers into open struggle.

Huawei executive’s arrest provokes anti-US protests in China

By Peter Symonds, 13 December 2018

Meng Wanzhou’s detention is part of a broader US campaign, under both the Obama and Trump administrations, aimed at undermining Huawei and other Chinese tech companies.

Australian Amazon worker alleges unfair dismissal

By Oscar Grenfell, 13 December 2018

The Sydney worker has claimed he was sacked for joining a union and asking for more hours per week.

Hundreds of residential tower blocks around UK still clad in flammable material

By Margot Miller, 13 December 2018

In Salford, flammable cladding has been partially removed from some of the nine local authority-owned blocks—up to the fourth floor, and only completely from one block.

Peruvian voters approve referendum proposals touted as answer to corruption

By Cesar Uco, 13 December 2018

President Vizcarra is seeking to use the referendum to refurbish the image of a bourgeois state that had lost all credibility in the eyes of the working class and the poor

A significant step forward: Detroit meeting of autoworkers resolves to form rank-and-file committees

By Joseph Kishore, 13 December 2018

In the center of world capitalism, the working class is beginning to establish the necessary organizational and political framework for a counter-offensive.

“This meeting is a powerful expression of the growing opposition of the working class”

Report to Detroit meeting to fight GM plant closings

By Jerry White, 13 December 2018

Jerry White, labor editor of the WSWS, introduced the resolution to the December 9 meeting, outlining the strategy to unify workers in the US and internationally against the attacks on workers’ jobs and conditions.

Time magazine honors journalists facing repression—but snubs Julian Assange

By Patrick Martin, 13 December 2018

The magazine’s “Person of the Year” went to journalists facing persecution for their efforts to uncover the truth, but only those whose efforts were aligned with US foreign policy.

The Australian Labor Party and the persecution of Julian Assange

By James Cogan, 13 December 2018

Far from protecting the “safety” of an Australian overseas, Labor has lined up completely with Washington and placed itself at the forefront of the attack on the WikiLeaks publisher.

Wildlife: American dreams and discouragement

And Can You Ever Forgive Me?

By Joanne Laurier, 13 December 2018

Set in 1960 in Great Falls, Montana, Wildlife is a relatively somber look at postwar American life. Can You Ever Forgive Me? focuses on an eccentric forger.

240 Greenland melting

13 December 2018

13 December 2018

Political warfare in Washington escalates to crisis of capitalist rule

By Barry Grey, 12 December 2018

Trump’s embrace of murder, his defense of fascists, his racist attacks on immigrants are blowing up an ideological pillar of US imperialist foreign policy—the pretense that the United States is a bulwark of human rights and democracy.

Hyundai, Kia workers strike in South Korea in opposition to attacks on wages

By Ben McGrath, 12 December 2018

The imposition of a new tier of low-paid workers in Gwangju is just the precursor to broader attacks on workers’ conditions.

High school students protest in Paris against French government’s education reforms

By Alex Lantier, 12 December 2018

The students are opposing the government’s right-wing reforms and re-imposition of compulsory military service, while showing their support for the “yellow vests.”

US-Russia tensions mount over warplanes in Venezuela

By Bill Van Auken, 12 December 2018

The flight of the Russian warplanes to Caracas follows the provocative US Air Force overflight of Ukraine the previous week.

Witch hunt in Australia against Chinese-born parliamentarian

By Peter Symonds, 12 December 2018

The smears and innuendo against Pierre Yang are part of a campaign aimed at silencing any criticism or opposition to the escalating US war drive against China.

Democrats begin open discussion of impeachment

By Patrick Martin, 11 December 2018

Two top members of the House Democratic leadership said that Trump could be impeached or jailed over alleged campaign finance violations.

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.

Sri Lankan plantation companies reject workers’ wage demand

By W.A. Sunil, 11 December 2018

Despite an indefinite strike, the employers are insisting that profits must be defended by subjecting workers to super-exploitation.

Chicago teacher union shuts down charter school strike, holds rally for Democratic candidates

By Kristina Betinis and Alexander Fangmann, 11 December 2018

Union officials showered Democrats with praise while offering no concrete details of the agreement to charter school teachers or when they could vote on the deal.

Former Ukrainian Prime Minister Tymoshenko tours Washington to garner support for presidential bid

By Jason Melanovski and Clara Weiss, 11 December 2018

The ultimate goal of Tymoshenko’s visit to Washington was to promise to continue with the United States’ militarization of the country and the Black Sea.

Japanese government rams through new immigration law

By Gary Alvernia, 11 December 2018

While portrayed as a “liberalisation” of existing policy, the law reflects concerns within ruling circles over the economic impact of Japan’s declining workforce.

Australian university moves to sack academic critical of Israeli and US wars

By Oscar Grenfell, 11 December 2018

The University of Sydney’s suspension of Tim Anderson is aimed at intimidating students and academics opposed to escalating militarism and war.

Autoworkers at Detroit public meeting: “Rank-and-file committees of the working class are the answer”

By our reporters, 11 December 2018

Workers expressed their support for a campaign to build new organizations of struggle, independent of the United Auto Workers, to lead a fight against all plant closures.

Oklahoma Republicans demand the abolition of public schools

By Nancy Hanover, 11 December 2018

A section of the Republican Party, speaking for broader Wall Street interests, advocates ending tax-funded public education.

China summons American ambassador over detention of Huawei executive

By Peter Symonds, 10 December 2018

The highly provocative actions of the US are part of the Trump administration’s wider campaign to prevent Chinese corporate giants from challenging American technological supremacy.

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.

No to the persecution of Eric Drouet

By Kumaran Ira, 10 December 2018

Macron tries to intimidate the “yellow vests” by persecuting one of the founders of the movement.

German workers express solidarity with “yellow vest” protests in France

By our reporters, 10 December 2018

German workers who spoke with Socialist Equality Party (SGP) candidates, expressed sympathy with the mass protests of the “yellow vests” in France. Many share the same grievances and confront the same inequities.

Canada-China relations sour after Ottawa kidnaps Huawei executive

By Roger Jordan, 10 December 2018

At the express instructions of the federal Attorney-General, the Crown is arguing Meng Wanzhuo must remain in captivity pending the adjudication of her extradition to the US.

Another house fire erupts in Chicago’s Little Village neighborhood

By Benjamin Mateus and Jessica Goldstein, 10 December 2018

The fire, which displaced several families, came less than four months after a house fire in the same area claimed the lives of ten children.

Spain: Rightist parties mull government role for fascist Vox in Andalusia

By Paul Mitchell, 10 December 2018

The Spanish bourgeoisie is raising the profile of Vox, leading up to the Andalusian elections, with the country's establishment newspapers posting multiple articles—at least one a day—on the fascist party.

Australia: Thousands protest climate change and new Adani coal mine

By our reporters, 10 December 2018

The environmental groups that organised the rally are seeking to subordinate an emerging movement of young people to the very parties responsible for environmental destruction.

White House turmoil deepens after Kelly firing

By Patrick Martin, 10 December 2018

The circle of Trump’s top aides is narrowing to include only his immediate family and those closest to them.

Neo-Nazi convicted for murdering antiracist protester in Charlottesville, Virginia

By Nick Barrickman, 10 December 2018

21-year-old James Fields, Jnr. faces sentencing on Monday, and a looming federal trial for hate crimes. A guilty verdict will carry the possibility of a death sentence.

Oakland, California teachers hold wildcat “sickout”

By Jonathan Burleigh, 10 December 2018

Teachers from over five schools carried out a coordinated “sick out” on Monday to protest low wages and millions of dollars in planned cuts to the district.

Jeffrey Epstein case exposes how US justice works for the rich

By Matthew Taylor, 10 December 2018

The billionaire hedge fund manager avoided human trafficking charges due to his vast wealth and political connections.

German Christian Democrats select Merkel’s favoured candidate as party leader

By Peter Schwarz and Ulrich Rippert, 10 December 2018

The change in the leadership of Germany’s main governing party takes place in the midst of a new eruption of class struggle in Europe.

Huffington Post renews smear campaign against UK Professor Piers Robinson

By Julie Hyland, 10 December 2018

Robinson is being attacked for his research on Syria, including probing questions regarding the predatory imperialist aims of the “war on terror,” which is verboten for the official state propagandists in Britain and the US.

Indian workers face slave-like conditions in Sri Lanka

By R. Shreeharan and Ivan Weerasinghe, 10 December 2018

Young men recruited from a Jharkhand village to work on a high-voltage power-line in Sri Lanka have not been paid for three months.

Detroit public meeting resolves to organize fight against General Motors plant closures

By Will Morrow, 10 December 2018

The attendees voted unanimously to adopt a resolution calling for the formation of rank-and-file workplace and neighborhood committees to organize a struggle against plant closures.

In name of fighting fascism, ISO promotes class collaboration and Democratic Party

By Kayla Costa, 10 December 2018

In an appeal to form an alliance with the “broadest social layers” against fascism, the International Socialist Organization seeks to subordinate the working class to the corporate-controlled two-party system.

France’s “yellow vest” protesters brave repression and mass arrests

By Alex Lantier and Kumaran Ira, 9 December 2018

The French president’s attempts to staunch the protests through a combination of phony concessions and state violence have clearly failed.

The kidnapping of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou

By Andre Damon, 8 December 2018

Meng’s arrest and confinement—without bail and on tendentious and opaque charges potentially carrying a sentence of 60 years—amount to little more than a kidnapping.

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.

As Dow drops another 560 points

Wall Street Journal warns of stock “stampede”

By Nick Beams, 8 December 2018

The longest bull market in history has rested on the suppression of the class struggle by the trade union bureaucracy, which is breaking apart.

“A serious fightback will only develop through action initiated by the rank-and-file workers”

GM Oshawa workers speak out against plant closure

By A WSWS reporting team, 8 December 2018

WSWS reporters visited GM’s Oshawa plant in Ontario Wednesday to discuss the company’s plan to close the plant and how workers can fight back.

“The fight against plant closures should be seen as a fight of all workers”

Students across the US declare their support for autoworkers

By the International Youth and Students for Social Equality (US), 8 December 2018

IYSSE members spoke with students around the United States about the struggle of autoworkers against the corporations and trade unions.

Sri Lankan plantation strike: Abbotsleigh workers march to demand action committees and socialist policies

By our reporters, 8 December 2018

Yesterday’s march was organised by an action committee of Abbotsleigh Estate workers, following political interventions by the Socialist Equality Party.

Teachers strike in South Australia and Tasmania

By Oscar Grenfell, 8 December 2018

The Australian Education Union is seeking to divide the struggles and push through sell-out enterprise agreements in both states.

In another shot across the White House’s bow

Mueller lauds former Trump lawyer Cohen for providing “useful and relevant” information

By Barry Grey, 8 December 2018

The central concern of the Democrats is to force Trump to assume an even more belligerent and aggressive posture toward Moscow.

Sudden closure of for-profit Education Corporation of America leaves 20,000 students without an education

By Adam Mclean, 8 December 2018

One of the largest for-profit colleges in the United States, ECA abruptly announced this week that they would shut down operations at almost all locations, following their disaccreditation on Tuesday.

New York University faculty defends academic freedom against NYU’s ties to UAE

By Josh Varlin, 8 December 2018

NYU faculty closed a December 3 meeting by overwhelmingly supporting a resolution supporting the creation of an independent faculty committee to defend academic freedom.

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.

80th anniversary of the Fourth International celebrated in Melbourne with public lecture

By our reporters, 8 December 2018

David North, chairman of the World Socialist Web Site international editorial board and the Socialist Equality Party (US), will speak tomorrow in Wellington, New Zealand.

Jacobin urges readers to “log off” social media

By Will Morrow, 8 December 2018

An article in Jacobin argues that Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms have become damaging to the health of the population, are “destructive for the left,” and should be done away with.

Debra Ann Washington Miller–A fighter for the working class

January 18, 1952–December 1, 2018

By Helen Halyard, 8 December 2018

It is with great sadness that the World Socialist Web Site reports the recent death of Debra Ann Washington Miller, an active supporter of the Socialist Equality Party in Detroit who played a significant role in mobilizing workers against evictions in the downtown area.

Maria by Callas: A documentary on the life of the famed opera singer

By Joanne Laurier, 8 December 2018

Tom Volf’s Maria by Callas, about the legendary Greek-American opera soprano, has opened in the US.

Pakistan municipal workers protest for outstanding wages; Sri Lankan housing workers fight layoffs; New Zealand teachers reject new pay offer

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

8 December 2018

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

At Washington’s behest

Canada arrests top Chinese executive for “sanctions busting”

By Keith Jones and Roger Jordan, 7 December 2018

The arrest and impending extradition to the US of Meng Wanzhou is a diplomatic and geopolitical provocation that has effectively blown up the US-China trade-war “truce” after less than a week.

Huawei executive Meng’s arrest sparks market turbulence

By Nick Beams, 7 December 2018

The market turbulence on Wall Street saw the Dow off by 784 points in late morning trade which meant that the market had experienced a 1,500-point slide in a day and a half.

Lordstown, Ohio workers condemn GM’s planned factory closures

By our reporters, 7 December 2018

Workers report that the closure of the Lordstown assembly plant will have a devastating impact on an area that has already been hit hard by decades of deindustrialization.

Sri Lankan president uses executive powers to run government

By W.A. Sunil, 7 December 2018

Sirisena’s autocratic actions are another dangerous sign that dictatorial forms of rule are being prepared in Sri Lanka.

Former US State and Defense Department officials discuss prospects for nuclear war

By J. L'Heureau, 7 December 2018

The Council on Foreign Relations’ forum on “Do Nuclear Weapons Matter” was held against the backdrop of rising global military tensions.

Ecuadorian president hints again at moves to renege on Julian Assange’s asylum

By James Cogan, 7 December 2018

The fight for the freedom of Assange is a matter of fundamental political principle.

Japanese police detain Zengakuren activists for nearly three weeks

By Ben McGrath, 7 December 2018

The police measures used against this student group are part of a broader attack on basic democratic rights.

The German Christian Democrats elect a new leader

By Peter Schwarz, 7 December 2018

The three candidates will compete to see who can shift the Chancellor’s previous policy furthest to the right.

Chicago charter teacher strike continues, as unions announce backing for Democratic machine politician

By Kristina Betinis, 7 December 2018

Acero teachers determined to improve conditions are being isolated from other schools even as the unions use their strike as the backdrop for their political maneuvers.

“Multiple families have been displaced and the city and government, no one has done a damn thing for them”

Three months after Chicago house fire that killed ten children

By George Gallanis and Benjamin Mateus, 7 December 2018

The cause of the fire in the working class Little Village neighborhood remains unknown as victims of the fire struggle to move on.

Hundreds of thousands of low-income New Yorkers excluded from mayor’s affordable housing plan

By Philip Guelpa, 7 December 2018

The plans of both Mayor Bill de Blasio and the comptroller leave the critical shortage of affordable housing in the hands of private developers.

UK: Labour Students leadership and Zionists extend witch-hunt of Chris Williamson MP

By Thomas Scripps, 7 December 2018

The cancellation of the Sheffield meeting, at which Williamson was due to speak, became a launch pad for a nationwide offensive wherever the Blairites and Zionists have influence within student groups.

National Health Service workers among increasing users of food banks in Britain

By Ben Trent, 7 December 2018

A survey of 21,000 health workers found that 49 percent had to seek financial help from friends and family the previous year.

More warnings of an Australian property market crash

By Oscar Grenfell, 7 December 2018

Sydney’s house prices registered their sharpest monthly decline in 14 years, accompanied by rising mortgage stress and indications of a broader economic slowdown.

The demonstrations in France and the global class struggle

By Alex Lantier, 7 December 2018

As they face Macron’s brutal crackdown, workers and students in France fighting austerity and inequality must turn to the international working class.

A quarter-century since the release of Steven Spielberg’s film

The achievement of Schindler’s List

By David Walsh, 7 December 2018

Schindler’s List opened in movie theaters in the US in December 1993. A restored version is now playing in selected theaters. We are reposting today a review published in the International Workers Bulletin, a forerunner of the WSWS, in January 1994.

German Left Party denounces “Yellow Vest” protests

By Peter Schwarz, 7 December 2018

The Left Party is instinctively hostile to any social movement that is not controlled and held in check by the trade unions.

15,000 South African miners at Sybanye Stillwater still out; UK rail and shipbuilders strike; Turkish cosmetic workers strike passes 200 days

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

7 December 2018

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

The state funeral for George H. W. Bush and the ritual of oligarchy

By Patrick Martin, 6 December 2018

The passing of the 41st US president has evoked not the slightest sadness in the American population, despite the massive effort to present George H. W. Bush as a sympathetic and historic figure.

The Guardian attack on Assange exposed as politically-motivated fabrication

By James Cogan, 6 December 2018

The lack of any case against WikiLeaks explains the scurrilous allegations by the Guardian newspaper last week.

Jaffna (Sri Lanka) meeting celebrates 80th anniversary of the Fourth International

By R. Shreeharan, 6 December 2018

People from all over the Jaffna district heard Socialist Equality Party leaders explain the contemporary relevance of the Trotskyist movement’s historic struggle.

Australian government to impose encryption-cracking bill with Labor’s support

By Mike Head, 6 December 2018

The anti-democratic legislation hands extraordinary powers to the spy and police forces, setting a global precedent for accessing computers and encrypted private data.

GM, Ford, Bayer, Bombardier

Global investors demand escalation of class war on workers’ jobs and wages

By Jerry White, 5 December 2018

The plant closings and layoffs at GM are part of a broader assault on the working class throughout the world being directed by the most powerful corporate interests.

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.

Trade and recession fears hit Wall Street

By Nick Beams, 5 December 2018

US share markets plunged yesterday amid fears of an escalating trade war with China as well as growing signs that the US economy is entering a recession.

Republican senators say “zero question” Saudi prince ordered Khashoggi assassination

By Bill Van Auken, 5 December 2018

A closed-door briefing Tuesday by CIA Director Gina Haspel confirmed Mohamed bin Salman’s responsibility for the murder of the Saudi journalist.

Five years since Detroit bankruptcy

Moody’s warns investors about Detroit’s mounting debt

By Debra Watson, 5 December 2018

Moody’s Investors Service has issued major warnings about the ability to meet bond payments and financial shortfalls in the city’s public schools.

Peru’s president prepares to attack workers’ living standards

By Cesar Uco, 5 December 2018

The most important issue discussed at the CADE 2018 conference was a coordinated government-business attack on labor costs.

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.