Communist Party of Britain and Morning Star

Uyghurs suppressed? But the US has racist cops!

During the Cold War the cry "but America lynches blacks" was a favourite Stalinist riposte to any criticism of the USSR's human rights record. This is known as a Tu Quoque — a form of debating trick based upon the perceived hypocrisy of the opponent rather than the merits of their argument. Last weekend's Morning Star (19-20 Sep) carried a classic example of this with an article by Fiona Edwards entitled "The left must oppose the US cold war on China and not sit on the fence". Ms Edwards examines "the reality of the contrasting approaches of the US and China on the major issues facing humanity...

Forward to Comrade Johnson's Five Year Plan!

Let’s be clear: when it comes to Brexit, the Morning Star and its masters, the Communist Party of Britain, essentially support Boris Johnson and wish him well. They even (as we shall see) harbour hopes that he may introduce some sort of planned economy (no, seriously! See below). This has been obvious for a long while: over a year ago (29 Aug 2019), the paper blamed anti-Brexit MPs for Johnson’s illegal prorogation of parliament: “It comes in circumstances that have been created by anti-Brexit MPs and the House of Commons. They have had three years to agree a way to honour the people’s vote to...

Belarus: calculation or confusion?

The Morning Star is usually clear-cut on international issues: for them (and their political masters, the Communist Party of Britain), the world is divided pretty neatly into goodies and baddies. The goodies are the “anti-imperialist” forces (Hamas, Hezbollah, etc.) and regimes like Cuba, Iran and Venezuela. The baddies are the US (with or without Trump), the EU and all liberal democracies. Putin doesn’t quite fit into the Morning Star’s neat division of the world, but it’s pretty obvious that on the whole, they reckon he’s more sinned against than sinning. First and foremost amongst the...

Left politics without the activists

Gabriel Pogrund’s and Patrick Maguire’s book Left Out: The Inside Story of Labour Under Corbyn is not really about the politics of the Corbyn Labour Party leadership, but about the “politics” in the sense of corridor chat, text-message exchanges, and WhatsApp groups at the top of the party hierarchy. Tellingly, it doesn’t mention the failure of the Labour Party in that period to promote any real ongoing political campaigns outside the general elections of 2017 and 2019. Either the authors take it as obvious that political parties won’t do political campaigning, or they picked up no argument or...

China and the Uyghurs

The Morning Star has a problem. How does a newspaper claiming to stand for “Peace and Socialism” defend a regime that denies basic democratic rights and has incarcerated an estimated million Muslims in what look very much like concentration camps? An article by one Carlos Martinez (MS July 14) denounced “increasingly hysterical and absurd” criticisms of China, citing “four main lines of attack being pushed on a daily basis by the US and British ruling classes”: That the newly introduced National Security Law is an attack on the basic freedoms of the people of Hong Kong and violates China’s...

Stand with Hong Kong!

Over mid-July, Hong Kong has been in a stand-off. The Chinese regime’s National Security Law (NSL) is now in force in Hong Kong. Its powers far exceed the Extradition Bill that was thrown out last autumn after street protests. Yet radicals in the democratic camp won the unofficial primaries in which over 600,000 Hong Kong people took part. Those who won say they will resist the NSL. So far, despite threats, the democratic candidates have not been arrested, nor have they been barred from standing in September’s elections. That was the background to the online rally of Labour Movement Solidarity...

Momentum Renewal and Islamophobia

For all its rhetoric about working-class politics, the conservative-left and Stalinist faction in Momentum’s national coordinating group election, Momentum Renewal, has had little to say about the huge crises confronting the working class in the real world. Despite having a large network of supporters, including many people working full-time for Labour politicians, unions and the like, its blog has had only three posts. Momentum Renewal’s candidates and organisers have, however, found plenty of time to spend attacking Workers’ Liberty – which sometimes seems to be virtually the main focus of...

The Morning Star and "patriotism"

On 7 May, the Morning Star carried an article with the snazzy headline “Patriotism is good for you.” A better headline would have been “Stalinism turns you into a useless nationalist who can’t pick the right side in an industrial dispute”. Before examining what this Comrade Blimp has to say about the fusion of nationalism and socialism, it’s worth saying something about the piece’s author. Doug Nicholls is chair of the board of Ruskin College. Last year college management victimised workplace activists in the UCU. Nicholls refused to back the workers, and then invited the college principal to...

Desperate Stalinists face their Thermidor

The Morning Star and its political masters in the Communist Party of Britain are getting desperate: the only chance they’ve ever had of wielding governmental influence in the UK lies in ruins. Only yesterday, it seems, they had a Labour leader who openly supported the paper, surrounded by close advisers whose ideology reflected the CPB’s most hard-line Stalinist wing. And after the surprisingly strong Labour showing in 2017, governmental power (or at least, influence) could not be ruled out. Now all that has been snatched away from them – or, as some would say, they’ve blown it. No wonder they...

Letters

Katy Dollar’s article, “Morning Star depicts trans people as predators” (Solidarity 536) is a valuable exposition of the Star’s recent and longer term transphobia, why unions should stop funding it, and more. I’d like to pick up on one point. Katy states: “In 2018 a group of Morning Star readers wrote into the paper criticising it for publishing an anti-trans open letter. “This division between a group of mostly younger Star readers who see the need to fight transphobia, and the official line of the Communist Party and its paper, will probably have been one reason why the Morning Star felt...

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