Cuba: Defending Socialism, Resisting Imperialism

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On Tuesday 8 June Bolivar Hall, London was packed  for the big-screen premier of the new Rock around the Blockade (RATB) documentary Cuba: Defending Socialism, Resisting Imperialism.

The event began with introductions from the producers, Anthony Rupert and Ethesham Haque, activists in RATB, who explained that most of the filming was done during a solidarity brigade to Cuba in spring 2009.

 

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General Election, General Fraud!

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On Saturday 3 April comrades and friends of Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! London staged a mock election at the Angel, Islington with the slogan ‘General Election, General Fraud!’ Members of the public signed our petitions against the closure of Whittington Hospital’s A&E department, to stop cuts in public services and to put the Labour government on trial for war crimes.

Passers by cast votes in our ballot box, a symbolic gesture encouraging them to think about the issues that matter to them – instead of voting for political parties or  personalities with the same corrupt capitalist policies. The public's ballot papers listed issues which don’t form part of the phoney debate in the run up to the general election, for example:

 

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Labour's privatisation plans: bad for our health / 27 February 2010

march

On Saturday 27 February London FRFI joined the march to stop the closure of the A&E department at Whittington Hospital, North London.

FRFI supporters formed a lively contingent at the back of the march and chanted all the way from Highbury Corner, along the Holloway Road to the Hospital in Archway. Around 2,000 people marched, shoppers and pedestrians stopped and some joined in, drivers hooted in support and there was that uplifting feeling of strength of a campaign that involves everyone, from babies to pensioners, from doctors and nurses to patients and relatives, and all local residents.

 

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The politicians have no solutions. It's time to organise the fightback! - 18 October 2009

frfispeakingtour

The London meeting of the Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! Speaking Tour event organised by the Revolutionary Communist Group took place on Saturday 18 October 2009 at Bolivar Hall, London. The day school consisted of two discussions: one on Socialist Cuba and ALBA; the other on the capitalist crisis and imperialism. The speaker on Cuba provided an in-depth analysis of how Cuba survived periods of economic crisis, without betraying its socialist principles and welfare-based development model. Measures taken during Cuba's Special Period and in the current crisis demonstrate how in practice the socialist alternative to the destruction and brutality unleashed during crises under capitalism. The discussion also assessed the building of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas (ALBA) as a barrier to imperialist domination and capital penetration from the US and Europe and highlighted the importance of the Bank of ALBA, and the new virtual currency, the SUCRE, which will be launched early next year for ALBA trade.

 

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RATB fundraiser - Mar 25 - go to the Rock Around The Blockade

First of all thanks to all the people who came down! Thanks to all the acts for giving it their all! And thanks to RATB for putting it all together.

A smashing evening!

Here are the pictures from the night @ 'Pleasure Unit':
"The ZongZing Allstars",
"DeadPlants" and
"MC Drop Dread Fred"

WHO WE ARE
Rock around the Blockade was founded in 1995 by the Revolutionary Communist Group and supporters of the newspaper Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! and is open to anyone who supports Cuba's socialist revolution.

 

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Stop Deporting to the DRC! - Mar 28

Short report from todays Congo demo

LONDON
About 40 people assembled outside the Home Office in a very lively protest.

MANCHESTER
100 people marched to the city centre, where they staged a sit-down, and then moved on to the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal. Lively and loud.

GLASGOW
Over 100 people, a soundsystem and 30 Glasgow school kids

 

Free the Cuban Five! Close Guantanamo Base! Day of action in Britain - Apr 7

Activists from the Revolutionary Communist Group (RCG) and Rock around the Blockade (RATB), which campaigns in solidarity with the Cuban Revolution, took to the streets across Britain on Saturday 7th April, to demand freedom for the Cuban Five and an end to US occupation of Guantanamo Bay. The protests were among several activities organised by RCG/RATB during three months of international action called by the Union of Young Communists in Cuba, to demand the release of the five heroes. Today’s events were timed to coincide with demonstrations in New York and Los Angeles called by the April 7th Coalition in the United States.

 

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Cuba solidarity campaigns unite! - May 19

Saturday 19 May 2007, members of several organisations: Rock Around the Blockade set up by the Revolutionary Communist Group, North London Cuba Solidarity Campaign, the Communist League and the Young Socialists, held a joint solidarity event to call for the immediate release of the 5 Cuban heroes. The protest was held in Trafalgar Square, in the centre of London, where protesters held up placards demanding the release of the Five, an end to the illegal US blockade of Cuba and incarceration for infamous terrorist Luis Posada Carriles. Many passers by, including tourists from around the globe, stopped to listen to speeches and slogans and took leaflets about the case of the Five and the example of the Cuban Revolution.

 

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Victory to the Intifada contingent on ENOUGH Palestine demo - June 9

On Saturday 9th June a lively and angry contingent from the Victory to the Intifada campaign joined the national demonstration called by the ENOUGH coalition to demand an end to the 40 year occupation of the West Bank, Jerusalem and Gaza. Organisers claimed 20,000 people participated in the march, although the actual figure was closer to 5,000.

 

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Another life stolen by the prison system- June 13

HMP Styal - Wednesday 13 June 2007 Demonstration to protest against the death of mother Helen Mary Cole, 48 who died in the 'care' of the prison on 3 June 2007.

STYAL PRISON CHESHIRE
HELEN COLE, 48
DIED 3 JUNE 2007
WHY?

 

Support Prisoners - July 9

On 13 June and 9 July FRFI supporters in Manchester and London joined the demonstrations outside Styal and Holloway prisons organised by Pauline Campbell. Since 2004 Pauline, whose daughter Sarah died in Styal, has mounted a relentless campaign to expose the inhumanity of the system. At the Holloway demonstration, in protest against the death of Marie Cox on 30 June, Pauline was viciously assaulted by the local police as she and Gwen Calvert, the mother of Paul Calvert, who died in Pentonville symbolically blocked the path to the prison to prevent any more women being brought into the gaol.

 

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May 19 day of action - Organising against Labour’s racist immigration laws

On 19 May a successful day of action took place in cities throughout England and Scotland in protest against the British government’s continuing attacks on asylum seekers.  The action was called and co-ordinated by Tyneside Community Action for Refugees, who organised a 200-strong demonstration in Newcastle city centre on the theme of ‘You will not snatch us silently!’

 

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Britain OUT of the DR - Congo! - August 22

On 22 August London FRFI was invited to speak at a meeting organised by the Congo Support Project to organise resistance to deportations to the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and in particular to oppose a planned mass deportation by charter flight on 30 August. The meeting was chaired by the Congo Support Project, with other speakers from the Refugee Council and Congolese organisations CCUK and Congolese Rights. We reproduce below our contribution to the meeting. The next day, 23 August, the High Court ruled that no deportation of asylum seekers to DRC could take place prior to the completion of the Country Guidance Tribunal at which the safety of deportations to DRC is being challenged. The Tribunal opened in July and has been adjourned to 17 September.

 

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No deportations to the DRC! - August 28

On Tuesday 28 August, an RCG comrade joined a mass demonstration against removals to the Democratic Republic of Congo outside the Home Office immigration reporting centre in Glasgow. Up to 150 asylum-seekers and refugees protested, chanted, sang and spoke against deportations and dawn-raids, denouncing the Kabila dictatorship and Britain’s tacit co-operation with his regime.

 

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No to detention! No to Deportation! - September 22

On 22 September London FRFI joined the demonstration organised by No Borders to protest against the building of a second immigration prison at Gatwick airport. About 400 people marched from Crawley Town Centre to Tinsley House Immigration Removal Centre. The demonstration was part of a week of action and protest camp called by No Borders and supported by a wide range of organisations and individuals.

 

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DRCongo is not safe - No deportations! - Report on Friction TV! - October 01

From 17 to 25 September the Immigration Appeal Tribunal considered submissions that the 'Country Guidance' on the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), is incorrect and deportations cannot be safely carried out. (Country Guidance is intended to provide immigration judges with information to assist their assessment of asylum claims.) The Tribunal has heard all the evidence and the three judges have retired to consider their verdict. Whatever the court decides, the view of the many people from DRC who have been demonstrating all year in cities across Britain and who made their presence felt outside the court is clear - DRC is not safe!

 

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Boycott Israeli Goods Action - November 10

As part of The Fifth International Week of Action against Israel’s Apartheid Wall between 9 and 16 November 2007 (www.stopthewall.org), protesters held a rolling picket in London raising awareness of the Apartheid Wall and calling on the public to boycott Israeli goods.

 

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Free the Harmondsworth 4 - no show trial - November 13

On 13 November activists from London No Borders, Crossroads Women’s Centre, the Institute for Race Relations, National Coalition of Anti-Deportation Campaigns, Barbed-Wire Britain and Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! met to launch a campaign to defend and support the Harmondsworth 4, who face trial early next year following the uprising at Harmondsworth Immigration Removal Centre on 28 November 2006.

 

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Monday 14 January - HARMONDSWORTH 4 TRIAL - Report!

Support The Harmondsworth 4!



The trial of four men who were in Harmondsworth IRC at the time of the protest there on 28 November 2006 opened on Monday 14th January 2008 at Southwark Crown Court.

The Support the Harmondsworth 4 campaign demonstration outside the court was attended by representatives of London No Borders, Barbed-Wire Britain, Campaign Against Racism and Fascism, Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism and the All African Women's Group.

 

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Saturday 15 March - STOP THE WAR LONDON!

On 15 March FRFI activists joined the Stop the War demonstrations around the country to mark the 5th anniversary of the invasion of Iraq by the US and British forces. At the main march in London our loud anti-imperialist contingent was joined by Turkish communists from the MLKP and Congolese activities.

 

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Pauline Campbell - FIGHTER FOR JUSTICE

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20 January 1948 - 15 May 2008

FRFI is deeply saddened by the death on 15 May of Pauline Campbell, who for the past five years had fought an unrelenting struggle to expose the brutal and inhumane treatment of women prisoners in Britain.   Following the death in 2003 of her 18-year-old daughter Sarah - the youngest of six women who died in Styal that year – Pauline began a campaign of direct action to expose the prison system’s complete lack of care for vulnerable women.  Between April 2004 and April 2008 every time a woman prisoner died, she staged a demonstration outside the prison. There were 28 demonstrations in all.  RCG comrades regularly attended those at Styal, New Hall, Holloway and Durham prisons.  Pauline was arrested 15 times and charged five times.  The latest charges against her were recently dropped and we reprint below an article sent to FRFI just five days before her death, thanking readers for lobbying the CPS on her behalf.

 

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Thursday 5 June - Rock around the Blockade!- FREE THE CUBAN! LONDON!



Less than 24 hours after receiving the news that the US Court of Appeal had upheld the convictions of the Cuban Five, over 20 activists gathered outside the US embassy in London at 7pm as part of the 'day after' campaign to condemn against the rulings. This emergency protest was called by Rock around the Blockade, which campaigns in solidarity with Cuba's socialist Revolution in Britain. It was joined by representatives from other groups. Mobilisation began at 11pm the night before.

 

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Saturday 7 June - FREE THE FIVE! GLASGOW!



On Saturday 7 June, Rock Around the Blockade activists in Glasgow, Scotland took to the city centre to protest against US imperialism's upholding of the convictions of the Cuban Five. Activists distributed literature on the five heroes, petitioned for their release and asked local people to stand in support of the political prisoners. Leaflets were also distributed calling on people to join the demonstration outside the US Consulate in Edinburgh, Scotland on 26 July to demand the release of the Cuban Five and an end to the US blockade of the socialist island. Venceremos!

 

Saturday 14 July - Lloyds TSB: Hands off Cuba! London!

RATB tells Lloyds TSB: Hands off Cuba!

On Saturday 12 July, members and supporters of Rock around the Blockade (RATB) held a lively demonstration outside the Camden branch of Lloyds TSB bank in north London, protesting at the bank’s recent capitulation to the US blockade of Cuba.

Lloyds TSB has written to its business customers who deal with Cuba telling them they can no longer use their accounts to trade with Cuba. The letter states ‘I must advise you to find alternative ways of making payments to your suppliers with Cuban connections.’

 

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Tuesday 5 August - Asylum is not a crime! London!

Close down Communications House



Members and supporters of Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! gathered at Communications House, Old Street in London, for the monthly demonstration against the British Labour Government’s racist immigration laws and the ongoing detention and deportation of asylum seekers. Communications House and other Immigration Reporting Centres are places of fear for asylum seekers, they may be detained without warning and sent to a removal centre to await deportation.

 

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Sunday 10 August - Prisoners Justice Day! London!



Members and supporters of Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism!, London Coalition Against Poverty and Women in Prison gathered outside Holloway Prison on Sunday 10 August 2008, Prisoners Justice Day.

This annual event around the world gives solidarity to all those incarcerated in prison and remembers all those who have died at the hands of a brutal negligent inhuman prison system.

The demonstrations for Prisoners Justice Day 2008 at Holloway Prison in London and in Wilmslow, Cheshire at Styal prison were held as a tribute to Pauline Campbell who tragically died in May this year.

 

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Saturday 1 November - LSE FRFI DAYSCHOOL! London!

LSE Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! student society held a successful dayschool on the subject of 'Che Guevara, Cuba and Socialism in Latin America'. Attendees heard in-depth analyses of the revolutionary processes in Cuba, Venezuela, Bolivia and Ecuador.

 

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Tuesday 4 November - Close down Communications House! London!



On 4 November activists from No Borders, Southall Black Sisters and the Coalition to Stop Deportations to Iraq joined Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism!’s monthly demonstration outside Communications House Immigration Reporting Centre in London in protest against immigration Minister Phil Woolas’s new offensive against immigrants and in support of all those faced with detention and deportation.

 

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London branches

North London
020 7837 1688
northlondonfrfi@gmail.com

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