Next month the Liverpool Arena and Conference Centre is due to host the AOC Europe annual Electronic Warfare Europe convention despite fierce opposition in the city. Twenty MPs including five Merseyside MPs have tabled an early day motion attacking this Liverpool arms fair.
The Bristol band, Massive Attack have cancelled a gig at the Liverpool Arena in protest. Liverpool Mayor, Jo Anderson opposes this Liverpool Arms Fair.
More than 70 city councillors have issued a statement condemning the event. Even so, Labour councillors were whipped to vote against a motion from the Green Party against the arms fair. Only a handful defied the whip. How come? Apparently, they were warned of possible legal consequences, even though they successfully cancelled the event last year. So much for representative democracy. If a city that is defined by its history of struggle and left wing politics can be cowed by the threat of legal action, what does that mean for the struggle for socialism?
Step Up The Struggle
It means we have to step up the struggle. So, on Saturday there was a mass mobilisation by Liverpool Against The Arms Fair. Over 5000 people marched. Speakers included Labour MPs John McDonnell and Dan Carden, Lindsey German from Stop the War and, of course, Jeremy Corbyn. He had to leave early to attend the Wigan Diggers Festival.
You can get a flavour of what happened from Danny Rigg who tweeted reports for the Liverpool Echo.
The March itself.
Jeremy Corbyn’s speech.
“We continue to oppose the use of armed forces to solve the World’s problems and why we continue to wait in vain for the announcement of unlimited resources being deployed on a war on poverty and oppression.”
Welfare not Warfare remains our best defence.
Life long socialist. Now retired, I have been an office junior, a bookseller, a docker and a teacher. I write a lot and read a lot more. Committed member of the Society of Authors, English PEN and the National Education Union. Uncommitted member of the Labour Party. Will they expel me before my direct debit expires?