SHEFFIELD LABOUR LEFT STATEMENT:
Solidarity with Supporters of Socialist Appeal!
Sheffield Labour Left condemns the right-wing proposal, to be discussed via a motion at next week’s meeting of Labour’s National Executive Committee, that Socialist Appeal be a proscribed political organisation. Labour Against the Witch Hunt, the Labour In Exile Network and Resist, the new political organisation founded by former Labour MP Chris Williamson, are also included in the NEC motion. This initiative marks the beginning of the latest phase of the right wing’s witch hunt of the left in the Labour Party.
It is reported that the NEC motion cites Chapter 2, Clause I.4.B of the Party’s Rule Book in support of the proposal for proscription; in other words, if this motion were carried, support for Socialist Appeal (such as selling or writing for the newspaper of Socialist Appeal, running Socialist Appeal street stalls, or describing oneself as a supporter of Socialist Appeal) would become incompatible with membership of the Labour Party.
This rule is intended to exclude people who support political organisations which stand candidates against the Labour Party in elections. Yet supporters of Socialist Appeal have always campaigned in support of the Labour Party, in both local and general elections.
Sheffield Labour Left suspects that it is the work that supporters of Socialist Appeal have done to promote socialist ideas within the Party and their expression of no confidence in the current leadership, that is the real reason for the proposed proscription, and it asks why right-wing organisations, such as Progressive Britain and Labour First, have not been proscribed, given the damage their supporters did to Corbyn’s leadership and to the Party’s chances of success in the General Elections of 2017 and 2019. Moreover, it recalls what the Party said in 2012, when the GMB union proposed that Progress, a right-wing political organisation that merged with Policy Network to form Progressive Britain, be proscribed: that the Labour Party is a ‘broad church’ and is ‘not in the business of excluding people.’
Sheffield Labour Left therefore opposes any expulsion of supporters of Socialist Appeal from the Labour Party and stands in solidarity with them and with the hundreds of other Party members who have been unjustly suspended and expelled in previous phases of the witch hunt against the left.
The leadership of the Party must change, the right wing in the Parliamentary Labour Party must be held to account through a process of mandatory reselection, and Party officials, including the General Secretary, must be elected, not appointed. We want the Labour Party to become a mass political party of the working class that is led by socialists who will fight for the interests of the working class.
We call on Labour Party members in Sheffield to join us in our fight against the persecution of the left in the Labour Party.No to the
Date: Wednesday 21st July.
Public Anyone on or off Facebook
With international institutions, and local Israeli organisations, now publicly calling Israel an apartheid state, plus the ongoing attempts to oppress socialist-orientated movements in South America and elsewhere, it is as important as ever that socialists here show solidarity with those oppressed and fighting back for a better world.
This meeting is open to all, there will be plenty of time for questions and contributions.
Musheir El-Farra – Sheffield Palestine Solidarity Campaign
John Smith – Sheffield Cuba Solidarity Campaign. Author of ‘Imperialism in the 21st Century’.
Maria Vasquez-Aguilar – Activist and trade unionist, Co-founder of Chile Solidarity network.
The meeting will be chaired by Martin Mayer, the Chair of Sheffield Labour Left.
(SLL reserves the right to deny entry.)
Please consider putting this motion to your Labour Party branch/CLP:
Justice For Palestine
This Branch/CLP stands with people all around the world in solidarity with the Palestinian people and in defence of their inalienable rights. For 14 years Gaza has been under siege. For 54 years Gaza, the West Bank, including East Jerusalem have been illegally occupied by Israel. The injustice against the Palestinian people is intensifying.
This Branch/CLP notes that:
– Following attempts at the forcible expulsion of Palestinians from their homes in Sheikh Jarrah and Israeli forces storming the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, attacks on Gaza in recent days have killed at least 198 Palestinians including 58 children and 34 women with hundreds more injured and 10 Israelis have been killed including 2 children. Israel is threatening a ground invasion of Gaza.
This Branch/CLP believes that:
– A long-lasting peace for both Palestinians and Israelis can only be secured through a just solution that tackles the underlying injustices: Israel’s illegal occupation, its colonial settlements, its denial of the right of Palestinian refugees to return, its violations of human rights and international law and its siege of Gaza.
– As the former colonial power that issued the Balfour Declaration, and was then responsible for the Mandate leading up to the Nakba of 1948, Britain has a special responsibility to do all it can to ensure a just peace.
This Branch/CLP, therefore, calls upon the Labour Party leadership to call on the UK government to:
– Demand an end to the siege of Gaza and the illegal occupation of Palestinian territory;
– Impose sanctions on Israel for its repeated violations of international law, place an embargo on arms sales and end trade with illegal settlements;
– Demonstrate full support for the International Criminal Court’s opening of an investigation into alleged war crimes in the Israeli-occupied Palestinian territories; and
– Recognise the state of Palestine.
This CLP encourages its members to join demonstrations in solidarity with the Palestinian people and to donate to MAP (Medical Aid for Palestinians).