World News

China records lowest growth rate since 1990

By Nick Beams, 22 January 2019

National Bureau of Statistics head Ning Jizhe said the economy faced “downward pressure” and pointed to a “complicated and severe external environment” resulting from the US trade war.

Following strike, Bangladesh employers sack hundreds of garment workers

By Rohantha De Silva, 22 January 2019

The workers were not given any warnings and have not been paid outstanding wages and benefits in direct violation of Bangladesh’s limited labour laws.

Migrants in Australia hit by longer welfare wait

By Martin Scott, 22 January 2019

Immigrants in western Sydney, already confronting high unemployment and a lack of affordable housing, now face a four-year wait for welfare benefits.

Matamoros strike threatens to shut down North American auto industry

By Eric London, 21 January 2019

The corporate media are blacking out coverage of the largest strike in North America in the last two decades.

Democrats reject Trump proposal to fund border wall and end US government shutdown

By Niles Niemuth, 21 January 2019

There are growing signs of financial distress among the 500,000 federal employees forced to work without pay and the 300,000 that have been furloughed for an entire month.

Chicago police officer sentenced to less than seven years for murder of Laquan McDonald; three officers acquitted in cover-up

By Michael Walters, 21 January 2019

Jason Van Dyke was convicted in October 2018 of second-degree murder and 16 counts of aggravated battery with a firearm, one for every bullet he unloaded into McDonald’s body.

“We’re the ones doing the work, moving the packages and moving the world”

Rockford, Illinois UPS workers outraged by sellout Teamsters contract

By George Marlowe, 21 January 2019

UPS workers in the economically depressed midwestern city of Rockford, Illinois, have spoken out against the UPS-Teamsters contract.

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.

Duterte allies dominate Philippine midterm election campaign

By Joseph Santolan, 21 January 2019

The unanimity of Duterte’s coalition is based on its endorsement and expansion of state violence.

Maldives president launches “anti-corruption” campaign to undermine Chinese influence

By Rohantha De Silva, 21 January 2019

The purpose of the government’s investigation is to witch hunt former President Yameen and other pro-Chinese factions of the Maldives ruling elite.

The Australian newspaper targets Chinese university students

By John Harris, 21 January 2019

The article implied that the victory of a Chinese-born student in a university election expressed the dangers of “Chinese interference” at Australian campuses.

Seven-month National Grid lockout ends with USW-backed concessions

By John Marion, 21 January 2019

Few details of the six-year deal between National Grid gas company and the United Steelworkers union have been released publicly, but wage increases are less than the rate of inflation and benefits for new hires will be cut.

Trump, announcing new missile defense program, ramps up nuclear arms race

By Andre Damon, 19 January 2019

Trump’s latest boondoggle for the military and defense contractors is part of the largest and most sustained military buildup since the Cold War.

“There’s only so much workers can take and now we’re rising up”

Mass demonstration as Los Angeles strike reaches fifth day

By our reporters, 19 January 2019

As anger among teachers builds to fight against the Democratic Party-led campaign to privatize public education, the United Teachers of Los Angeles is working with the school officials to carve up the district.

Oakland teachers hold second wildcat “sickout,” call for statewide strike with Los Angeles teachers

By Jonathan Burleigh, 19 January 2019

In defiance of the official, interminable, negotiations process, Oakland teachers have begun to organize themselves independently in preparation for a broader struggle in defense of public education.

Wright State University faculty in Dayton, Ohio to strike Tuesday

By Alexander Fangmann, 19 January 2019

Faculty at Wright State University are scheduled to begin striking on Tuesday against the imposition of an austerity contract featuring a pay freeze, furloughs, healthcare cuts and increases in workload.

Workers call for election of committees

Auto companies scared, parts run low across North America as strike grows in Matamoros, Mexico

By Andrea Lobo and Alex González, 19 January 2019

The struggle by Maquiladora workers has reached a crucial point in which workers must take the struggle away from the trade unions, and appeal to their class brothers and sisters across North America and beyond.

US shutdown pits unpaid workers vs. political establishment and unions

By Daniel de Vries, 19 January 2019

There are growing fears in the ruling class that the prolonged shutdown could trigger strike action

Auto jobs massacre widens

Tesla, Nissan announce mass layoffs, Fiat Chrysler jobs threatened

By Marcus Day, 19 January 2019

The auto giants are seeking to terrorize an increasingly insurgent workforce into submission, as the companies confront slumping sales, a looming economic crisis and significant financial pressures.

Australia: State government report indicates Opal Tower should not have been reoccupied

By John Wilson, 19 January 2019

While the authors claim the building will not collapse, they detail both major damage and minor damage to the structure of the building.

“Amazon is really cold-hearted to its workers”

Injured Amazon worker forced to work to avoid being fired

By Nick Barrickman, 19 January 2019

A mother of two employed at an Amazon facility in east Baltimore contacted the International Amazon Workers Voice to relay her experiences with the web technology giant after being injured on the job.

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.

Canada ramps up anti-China campaign as US threatens action against Huawei

By Roger Jordan, 19 January 2019

The Canadian government feels it can act so provocatively because its demonization of China is part of a broader offensive against Beijing led by US imperialism.

“Made in China 2025” at centre of US-China economic war

By Gabriel Black, 19 January 2019

The US regards the “Made in China 2025” initiative as a major threat to its own global economic and strategic domination.

Australian prime minister’s Pacific visit reinforces militarist line up against China

By Mike Head, 19 January 2019

The trip underscored the bullying nature of the turn by Canberra to reassert its predatory interests in the South West Pacific, and that of Washington, against Beijing.

Australian fake left promote Greens, trade unions and Labor at anti-fascist protest

By our reporters, 19 January 2019

The claim that the Labor and the unions can serve as bulwark against fascism a dangerous echo of the disastrous Popular Front policies of the Stalinist Parties in the 1930s.

Science and social crisis in 2019

By Bryan Dyne, 19 January 2019

A series of major scientific breakthroughs demonstrate the potential for the progressive development of humanity, even as capitalism drags mankind into war and barbarism.

Bird Box and Hold the Dark: Looking at things in the face or not

By Joanne Laurier, 19 January 2019

Netflix began streaming Bird Box on December 21 and, a week later, reported that the film had the largest seven-day viewership, 45 million accounts, of any of its original productions.

Hyundai and Samsung workers protest in India; Cambodian garment workers strike

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

19 January 2019

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

Amid media blackout, workers expand strike

Matamoros, Mexico strike of over 70,000 workers enters sixth day

By Alex González and Andrea Lobo, 18 January 2019

The strike at Matamoros is being blacked out by the corporate media because the ruling class is terrified of the prospect of workers uniting internationally in the fight for social equality.

“Those workers are setting an example, they are starting a movement”

Canadian and US autoworkers voice support for striking maquiladora workers in Mexico

By Shannon Jones, 18 January 2019

The striking workers in Mexico include many employed by US and global auto parts suppliers who rely on their labor to fuel their massive profits.

Los Angeles teachers battle privatization as union vies to be partner in LAUSD restructuring

By Jerry White, 18 January 2019

The five-day strike by Los Angeles teachers has thrust educators into a direct conflict with the Democratic Party, which has used the city and the state as a test case for school privatization.

US-born anchor for Iranian TV jailed without charges

By Bill Van Auken, 18 January 2019

The police state style abduction and imprisonment of Marzieh Hashemi is part of Washington’s wider preparations for war against Iran.

Report to Davos meeting points to deepening contradictions of global capitalism

By Nick Beams, 18 January 2019

The gathering of global elites is very mindful of the mounting international class struggle, with “social anger” increasingly prevalent.

Growing signs of worker resistance to US government shutdown

By Philip Guelpa, 18 January 2019

A TSA representative reported Wednesday that increasing numbers are explicitly stating that their refusal to come into work is due to financial hardship.

Native American organizations denounce government shutdown as an abrogation of treaties

By Shelley Connor, 18 January 2019

Now in its fourth week, the partial government shutdown has had wide-ranging and devastating effects upon Native Americans.

German SPD politician justifies murder of Rosa Luxemburg

By Peter Schwarz, 18 January 2019

Although the SPD continues to officially deny its complicity in the murder of Luxemburg and Liebknecht, Wolfgang Thierse, former president of the federal parliament, has now declared: We would do it again.

UK: Blairites spearhead campaign to commit Labour to remaining in the European Union

By Thomas Scripps, 18 January 2019

The Blairites are opposed to a general election and aim to block Brexit without letting what is nominally their own party under Corbyn anywhere near power.

Scottish lecturers expand strike for pay claim

By our correspondents, 18 January 2019

Lecturers are demanding a 2.5 percent increase, which merely covers for inflation, against an offer from the employers group Colleges Scotland of 0.9 percent.

The Congressional Budget Office points US spending priorities towards “great power” conflict: Part One

By Nancy Hanover, 18 January 2019

The latest CBO report emphasizes the need to fund ever-expanding wars while outlining various “options” for eviscerating social services and public education.

The working class must come to the defence of the Canada Post workers

By Laurent Lafrance, 18 January 2019

Having outlawed postal workers’ campaign of rotating strikes, the ruling class views the imposition of further concessions as crucial to their agenda of austerity and militarism.

Zimbabwe’s government cracks down on protest over fuel price increase

By Stephan McCoy, 18 January 2019

President Emmerson Mnangagwa finds himself at the head of a government that is increasingly viewed with hostility by the Zimbabwean population.

Indian government foreshadows harsher internet surveillance and censorship

By Wasantha Rupasinghe, 18 January 2019

The planned laws are part of vast array of anti-democratic measures being introduced by governments internationally to target and spy on internet users.

Extreme heatwave hits Australia

By Frank Gaglioti, 18 January 2019

The extended period of high temperatures is having serious impacts on people’s health, as well as agriculture and wildlife.

Signs of slump in Australia overshadow looming election

By Mike Head, 18 January 2019

Regardless of all the promises, a sharp downturn will drive another wave of austerity measures and job-shedding once an election is out of the way.

The US political crisis reaches fever pitch

By Patrick Martin, 18 January 2019

Both feuding factions of the US ruling elite are right-wing, anti-democratic and militaristic.

France’s Lutte ouvrière group defends unions against “yellow vest” protests

By Anthony Torres, 18 January 2019

The “yellow vest” movement has unmasked the class gulf separating the workers from the union bureaucracies and organizations such as the pseudo-left Lutte ouvrière .

Mass strike enters fifth day in Matamoros, Mexico

Thousands gather at mass meeting as maquiladora strike grows

By our reporters, 17 January 2019

Despite threats of mass firings and plant closures by the employers, over 70,000 striking workers are advancing their fight against social inequality.

House Speaker Pelosi asks Trump to postpone State of the Union address

By Niles Niemuth, 17 January 2019

A letter to the White House cited the lack of funding for the Secret Service and Department of Homeland Security due to the partial government shutdown, now in its fourth week.

Pentagon extends troop deployment at Mexican border until September

By Matthew Taylor, 17 January 2019

The Trump administration is increasing its repressive measures against immigrants, including doubling the capacity of an immigrant detention center for youth in Homestead, Florida.

Gdańsk mayor and opposition politician Paweł Adamowicz brutally assassinated

By Clara Weiss, 17 January 2019

Political responsibility for the assassination lies squarely with the ruling right-wing Law and Justice Party (PiS), which has promoted far-right forces and sentiments for years.

The US boosts military ties with Sri Lanka

By Vijith Samarasinghe, 17 January 2019

US Navy moves to establish a logistics hub at Trincomalee port come as the Trump administration ratchets up its trade war measures against China.

Analysis of Congo election data points to “huge fraud” in vote tally

By Eddie Haywood, 17 January 2019

An extensive set of data leaked to the Financial Times has revealed a clear case of massive electoral fraud.

Australia: Hutchison Ports workers begin work bans in Sydney and Brisbane

By Oscar Grenfell, 17 January 2019

The unions that claim to oppose Hutchison’s latest attacks on wages and conditions have enforced decades of sackings in the stevedoring industry.

Yellow vest protests expose right-wing politics of Germany’s Left Party

By Isabel Roy and Johannes Stern, 17 January 2019

After initially denouncing the “yellow vest” protests, Left Party leader Sahra Wagenknecht has sought to stamp her right-wing, anti-immigrant policies on the movement.

Right-wing Humboldt University Professor Jorg Baberowski threatens students

By the IYSSE at Humboldt University, 17 January 2019

Baberowski is using his Twitter and Facebook accounts to incite his right-wing periphery against students who criticize his racist and reactionary statements.

The global class struggle in 2019

By Joseph Kishore, 16 January 2019

The year 2019 is beginning with a wave of strikes, demonstrations and other manifestations of class struggle around the world.

As support grows to extend Los Angeles teacher strike, unions colluding with Democrats to end walkout

By Jerry White, 16 January 2019

With Oakland teachers planning sickouts to join the fight, the United Teachers Los Angeles is working behind the scenes with the Democratic mayor and governor to prepare a sellout of the strike.

Los Angeles teachers speak out on political issues in strike

By our reporters, 16 January 2019

“They keep saying, ‘There’s no money, there’s no money.’ That’s a lie.”

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.

Amid stalled US-North Korean talks, second Trump-Kim summit mooted

By Peter Symonds, 16 January 2019

The unstated aim of Trump’s diplomacy has been to “flip” North Korea—that is, to induce Pyongyang through threats and bribes to reorient away from Beijing and towards Washington.

Fire kills 18 at rehab center in Ecuador

By Cesar Uco, 16 January 2019

The tragedy is a direct consequence of government austerity policies directed at promoting foreign investment at the expense of public health and education.

Bolivia’s Morales and Brazil’s Bolsonaro collaborate in rendition of Cesare Battisti to Italy

By Bill Van Auken, 16 January 2019

Bolivia’s role in what amounted to an extra-judicial rendition is emblematic of the sharp rightward turn of what remains of Latin America’s “Pink Tide” governments.

PG&E’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing: Corporate executives again to get away with murder

By Jessica Goldstein, 16 January 2019

The company faces widespread litigation, including government investigation into the deadly Californian wildfires over the past two years, lawsuits from victims and over $30 billion in potential liabilities.

Quebec: Locked-out ABI workers begin second year on picket line

By Laurent Lafrance, 16 January 2019

The Steelworkers’ systematic isolation of the ABI workers’ struggle has emboldened the aluminum smelter’s majority shareholder, Alcoa, to escalate its demands.

Indian transit workers in Mumbai defy authorities, continue strike

By Kranti Kumara, 16 January 2019

As soon as the strike began, Maharashtra’s BJP state government invoked essential services legislation, threatening the strikers with mass incarceration, fines and dismissals.

Sri Lankan workers must oppose the witch-hunt of militant plantation workers

By M. Thevarajah, 16 January 2019

Plantation bosses, with the backing of the government, police and the unions, are attempting to intimidate estate workers and suppress their wage demands.

Bangladesh government oversees police attacks on protesting garment workers

By Wimal Perera, 16 January 2019

The Awami League-led government is seeking to suppress the wages movement with threats, police violence and victimisations.

US shutdown: Sickouts by screeners throw airports into crisis

By Rebecca Campbell, 15 January 2019

The sickouts are one reflection of growing anger and determination to take action against uncompensated, compulsory labor for 420,000 workers and the lockout of another 380,000.

World Bank warns of “storm clouds” over global economy

By Nick Beams, 15 January 2019

The bank cut its June forecast for global growth of 3 percent this year to 2.9 percent and warned that “the risks are growing that growth could be even weaker than anticipated.”

US ratchets up threats against Iran, Turkey amid Syria withdrawal plans

By Bill Van Auken, 15 January 2019

While the timetable for US troops to pull out of Syria remains unclear, Washington is steadily escalating tensions in the region.

US, Turkey clash over Turkish plan to buy Russian S-400 missiles

By Baris Demir, 15 January 2019

The US team is expected to warn Ankara that Washington will not tolerate a Turkish purchase of Russian air defence systems.

Brazil’s Bolsonaro increases drive for “pensions’ reform,” more state powers in second week of government

By Miguel Andrade, 15 January 2019

As Bolsonaro prepares unprecedented attacks on the Brazilian working class, the Workers Party (PT) is seeking an accommodation with possible “dissidents” in his cabinet.

Sri Lankan government proposes pay “formula” to end plantation workers’ struggle

By W.A. Sunil, 15 January 2019

The aim of the suggested three-year wage plan is to impose the burden of the crisis in the plantation industry onto workers.

Engineers disagree on whether Australian high rise is safe to reoccupy

By John Wilson, 15 January 2019

Some residents of Opal Tower in Sydney have moved back in, despite one engineering report advising against it.

Fight the Ford layoffs! Build rank-and-file committees to unite autoworkers across Europe!

By Sozialistische Gleichheitspartei, Socialist Equality Party and Parti de l’égalité socialiste, 15 January 2019

The working class cannot accept the “right” of the corporations to shut plants down, decimate entire communities and destroy the lives of tens of thousands of workers.

The American media revives the methods of McCarthyism

By Patrick Martin, 15 January 2019

The campaign sparked by reports over the weekend by the New York Times and Washington Post harks back to the anti-communist witch-hunt of the 1950s.

The FBI’s police state operation against Trump

By Patrick Martin, 14 January 2019

A New York Times report aimed at reviving the anti-Russia campaign against Trump exposes a conspiracy by the political police of the FBI to negate the results of the 2016 election.

Sickouts spread, impact widens as US shutdown enters fourth week

By Rebecca Campbell, 14 January 2019

The longest government shutdown in US history continues to impact on the economy as federal workers and government contractors try to cope with missed paychecks.

Mine collapse in northern China leaves 21 dead

By Robert Campion, 14 January 2019

China is the largest producer of coal in the world and notorious for its poor safety record.

Spain’s far-right Vox party backs right-wing coalition government in Andalusia

By Alejandro López, 14 January 2019

This is the first time a far-right party promoting the legacy of fascist dictator Francisco Franco helped form a government since the Francoite dictatorship fell 40 years ago.

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.

Massive campaign to defend Israeli religious students accused of killing Palestinian mother of nine

By Jean Shaoul, 14 January 2019

The murder and its aftermath highlight the utter lawlessness and racism inherent in the Greater Israel project from which the settler movement stems.

Hypocritical outrage from media, politicians after latest racist outburst by Iowa Congressman Steve King

By Trévon Austin, 14 January 2019

The intimate ties between the Republican Party and far-right, segregationist forces have been systematically covered up by the media and the Democrats as well as the Republicans.

New York City public housing residents in the South Bronx without heat for a decade

By Katy Kinner, 14 January 2019

During the winter months, New York City’s social misery is on full display as public housing residents live without reliable heat or hot water.

Macy’s marks worst day ever on Wall Street, will shut eight stores in 2019

By Jessica Goldstein, 14 January 2019

Against the backdrop of Sears’ threatened liquidation, Macy’s and other department retailers suffered severe stock drops and announced plans for more store closures.

Australia: Casual coal miners begin week long strike in Wollongong

By Oscar Grenfell, 14 January 2019

Labor and the unions, which have spearheaded the destruction of full-time jobs, are cynically exploiting the stoppage to posture as opponents of growing casualisation.

New Zealand doctors prepare nationwide strike

By Tom Peters, 14 January 2019

Some 3,300 doctors will join the strike in opposition to deepening attacks on working conditions in public hospitals under the Labour Party-led government.

Felix Tshisekedi declared victor in disputed presidential election in Congo

By Eddie Haywood, 14 January 2019

Heavily-armed riot police were deployed outside the electoral commission’s headquarters in Kinshasa ahead of the announcement.

Amid threat of national emergency declaration

US government workers call in sick, demand strike action against lockout and payless paydays

By Barry Grey, 12 January 2019

The growing opposition of federal workers comes together with the preparations of Los Angeles teachers to strike, the mounting opposition of auto workers to plant closures, and a rising wave of class struggle internationally.

For a united struggle to defend public education in California and beyond!

By the WSWS Teacher Newsletter, 12 January 2019

As teachers in Los Angeles prepare to strike, they confront the fact that the unions are working to undermine and isolate their struggle against privatization and other attacks on public education.

Following Oshawa GM sitdown protest, autoworkers fed poison of Canadian nationalism at Windsor rally

By Shannon Jones, 12 January 2019

Autoworkers attending a rally called by Unifor in Windsor, Ontario who were looking for a way to fight GM plant closures were instead hit with a strong dose of Canadian nationalism by union officials.

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.

Pompeo in Cairo: The ugly face of US imperialism

By Bill Van Auken, 12 January 2019

Reflecting US imperialism’s priorities in the region, Pompeo mentioned Iran 25 times in his speech, compared to a mere dozen references to “terrorism.”

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.

Financial warnings point to Australia’s economic and political instability

By Mike Head, 12 January 2019

Two reports raise the spectre of a financial crisis that would blow up the pre-election claims of both the Coalition government and the Labor Party.

The political significance of India’s two-day general strike

By Keith Jones, 12 January 2019

This week’s general strike in India, one of the largest strikes in history, is part of a growing upsurge of the world working class.