Photos: Jeremy Corbyn at CND’s Hiroshima Day 70th Anniversary Ceremony in Tavistock Square

7.8.15

A photo of Hiroshima after the atomic bomb was dropped on the city on August 6, 1945. Up to 80,000 people died instantly, and the death toll by the end of 1945 was around 140,000.

See my photos of the Hiroshima Day 70th Anniversary Ceremony in London on Flickr here!

Yesterday, August 6, was the 70th anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima, when, for the first time ever, an atomic bomb — dropped by the US — was used on a largely civilian population. I have been an implacable pacifist, and an opponent of nuclear weapons (and nuclear power), all my life, and a particularly important staging post in my development was when I was ten years old, and I watched the whole of the groundbreaking ITV series, ‘The World at War.’

So yesterday I was at Tavistock Square, with hundreds of other opponents of nuclear weapons, for CND‘s Hiroshima Day 70th Anniversary Ceremony, where speakers included the man of the moment, Jeremy Corbyn, who is standing for the leadership of the Labour Party, and is drawing huge crowds at meetings around the country, for two reasons — he presents a compelling anti-austerity point of view, which a significant number of people are crying out for, and he is genuine and honest and not distracted by the politics of personality, when it is the issues — the common good, fighting inequality and caring for our world and each other — that are most important. For just £3 you can become a registered Labour supporter and vote in the leadership election. You have to register by August 12th, ballots will be sent out on the 14th and must be completed, by post or online, by September 10.

I am pleased to have been involved with Jeremy though his membership of the Shaker Aamer Parliamentary Group, calling for the release from Guantánamo of Shaker Aamer, the last British resident in the prison, and before he decided to stand in the leadership contest, he was one of four MPs who made up a delegation to Washington D.C., where they met Senators including John McCain and Dianne Feinstein, and also met with representatives of the Obama administration.

Yesterday, however, Jeremy was at Tavistock Square to remember Hiroshima, and to continue the campaigning against the existence of nuclear weapons that, as he said on Twitter the night before, he first took up at the age of 15. I saw him speak — as powerfully as ever — and I also saw the author A. L. Kennedy, who read some powerful poems, and Sheila Triggs of WILPF (the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom), which was founded in 1915. The compere was Bruce Kent, and other speakers included Baroness Jenny Jones of the Green Party.

A video of Jeremy’s speech is below, via YouTube:

Remembering what happened on August 6, 1945, the Guardian explained:

The bomb exploded 580 metres (2,000ft) above a T-shaped bridge at the junction of the Honkawa and Motoyasu rivers, unleashing a blinding flash followed by a deafening boom.

About 70,000 people died instantly in the blast or from the firestorms that raged moments later. The death toll would rise to about 140,000 by the end of 1945. The explosion, equal to 12,000 to 15,000 tonnes of TNT, destroyed more than two-thirds of Hiroshima’s buildings across five sq miles.

Within 45 minutes of the attack, nuclear fallout mixed with ash and smoke from the firestorms to create a radioactive black rain that soaked survivors and did not abate until the fires began to burn themselves out in the evening.

As people staggered among the dead and dying in search of water and medical treatment, news began to spread to the capital, Tokyo, that something unspeakable had occurred in Hiroshima.

But wartime leaders did not receive confirmation that the city had been destroyed by a nuclear weapon until the following day, when the US president, Harry S Truman, said: “Sixteen hours ago an American airplane dropped one bomb on Hiroshima. It is an atomic bomb.”

I also recommend the recollections of Sunao Tsuboi, “a retired school principal who has travelled the world to warn of the horrors of nuclear warfare,” who was a 20-year old university student in Hiroshima on August 6, 1945. The Guardian published his recollections in the run-up to the anniversary, including the following passages:

Tsuboi remembers hearing a loud bang, then being blown into the air and landing 10 metres away. He regained consciousness to find he had been burned over most of his body, his shirtsleeves and trouser legs ripped off by the force of the blast.

“My arms were badly burned and there seemed to be something dripping from my fingertips,” said Tsuboi, who is co-chair of Nihon Hidankyo, a nationwide organisation of atomic and hydrogen bomb sufferers.

“My back was incredibly painful, but I had no idea what had just happened. I assumed I had been close to a very large conventional bomb. I had no idea it was a nuclear bomb and that I’d been exposed to radiation. There was so much smoke in the air that you could barely see 100 metres ahead, but what I did see convinced me that I had entered a living hell on earth.

“There were people crying out for help, calling after members of their family. I saw a schoolgirl with her eye hanging out of its socket. People looked like ghosts, bleeding and trying to walk before collapsing. Some had lost limbs.

“There were charred bodies everywhere, including in the river. I looked down and saw a man clutching a hole in his stomach, trying to stop his organs from spilling out. The smell of burning flesh was overpowering.”

He was taken to a hospital, where he remained unconscious for over a month. By the time he came to, a defeated Japan was under the control of the US-led allied occupation.

A link to the photos is also below:

Repair the world, do not destroy it

Andy Worthington is a freelance investigative journalist, activist, author, photographer, film-maker and singer-songwriter (the lead singer and main songwriter for the London-based band The Four Fathers, whose debut album, ‘Love and War,’ was released in July 2015). He is the co-founder of the Close Guantánamo campaign, the co-director of We Stand With Shaker, calling for the immediate release from Guantánamo of Shaker Aamer, the last British resident in the prison, and the author of The Guantánamo Files: The Stories of the 774 Detainees in America’s Illegal Prison (published by Pluto Press, distributed by the University of Chicago Press in the US, and available from Amazon, including a Kindle edition — click on the following for the US and the UK) and of two other books: Stonehenge: Celebration and Subversion and The Battle of the Beanfield. He is also the co-director (with Polly Nash) of the documentary film, “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo” (available on DVD here — or here for the US).

To receive new articles in your inbox, please subscribe to Andy’s RSS feed — and he can also be found on Facebook (and here), Twitter, Flickr and YouTube. Also see the six-part definitive Guantánamo prisoner list, and The Complete Guantánamo Files, an ongoing, 70-part, million-word series drawing on files released by WikiLeaks in April 2011. Also see the definitive Guantánamo habeas list, the full military commissions list, and the chronological list of all Andy’s articles.

Please also consider joining the Close Guantánamo campaign, and, if you appreciate Andy’s work, feel free to make a donation.

41 Responses

  1. Andy Worthington says...

    When I posted a photo on Facebook of Jeremy Corbyn speaking, I wrote:

    Here’s the man of the moment, Jeremy Corbyn, who I photographed yesterday speaking at CND’s Hiroshima Day 70th Anniversary Ceremony in Tavistock Square in London. Jeremy spoke very powerfully, as did other speakers, inc. A.L. Kennedy, who read out some excellent poems. As a committed pacifist, I was delighted to attend, and hope, as Jeremy said, that we will see a nuclear-free world in our lifetime. In the meantime, we must never forget the 220,000 people who died as a result of the first – and so far only – bombings using nuclear weapons.

  2. Andy Worthington says...

    Cathy Teesdale wrote:

    Great shot Andy.

  3. Andy Worthington says...

    Thanks, Cathy. I’m so pleased that Jeremy’s been able to strike a chord with so many people. I think it’s fair to say that no one – not even Jeremy and his team – really expected it to take off like this. Just when we’d been thinking, ‘where’s our SNP?’ we find out that it’s Jeremy – and a big shout out to John McDonnell too, his longtime colleague in the caring left wing of the Labour Party.

  4. Andy Worthington says...

    Ajo Muhammad wrote:

    Yes Andy, he is indeed. I hope the zionists won’t play their usual dirty games.

  5. Andy Worthington says...

    Yes, there are many vested interests who’d like to undermine Jeremy, Ajo, but he seems to be personally impervious, I’m glad to say.

  6. Andy Worthington says...

    Nick Jewitt wrote:

    Some idiot on BBC R4, reporting from the commemoration in Japan, called it a celebration.

  7. Andy Worthington says...

    That’s such a terrible thing for someone to say, Nick! An oversight, I imagine, although we’re now so generally desensitised that it’s all too easy for people to be dismissive of true horrors – death by nuclear bomb, torture, indefinite detention without charge or trial, the deaths of desperate immigrants, the deaths of disabled people treated as scum by their own government and by a multinational corporation overseeing reviews of their entitlement to benefits, to give just a few examples …

  8. Andy Worthington says...

    Nick Jewitt wrote:

    Indeed

  9. Andy Worthington says...

    Andrew Brel wrote:

    Here in California I must contend with how ‘vital it was to end the war without putting US boots on the ground’. Strong recommend the movie I watched yesterday, the 6th – Little Boy. Set in 1945.
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1810683/

    Little Boy (2015)
    Directed by Alejandro Monteverde. With Jakob Salvati, Emily Watson, David Henrie, Michael Rapaport. An eight-year-old boy is willing to do whatever it takes to end World War II so he can bring his father home. The story reveals the indescribable love a father has for his little boy and the love a son has for his father.

  10. Andy Worthington says...

    Thanks, Andrew. I’ll look out for it.

  11. damo says...

    Nothing good comes from nuclear anything be it power or bombs…nothing….stop the use of nuclear power now a global outlawing of nuclear bombs now.none of us can have any concept of Hiroshima or Nagasaki the full horror of what happened ,all the leaders of the world need to get together now a deal with the very real threat of fukushima ,the destroyed reactors at fukushima are leaking out up 450 tons of nuclear waste a day into the pacific ,Japan electric have……not….got this under control Andy I have friends in sanfran and la,they are seeing mass die off of whales,dolphines,sealions,seals,birds,fish,all sea life everything,the pacific is linked to everything is the earths blood …..its recirculatory this is a major threat and its never in the news,this is realy important unless we do something were dead ,this needs to be tackled and dealt with now.

  12. damo says...

    We seem to have learned ….nothing…..from ww2 from the horrors of concentration camps to Hiroshima the un was set up so this would never happen again ????? But has there been 5 mins since the end of ww2 were there hasent been a war or violence or genocide or horror ,I mean come on for fucks sake,….its like were all competeing in a race to the bottom…..Hiroshima was a warning if ever there was a warning and we have ignored I’ve seen the world at war and the Nazis a warning from history I hope we are not about to repeat history……we have been shown over and over again how to live on this planet in peace how we can love each other ,our planet,our none human friend the animals,birds,insects,ect,ect,from the native americans to the hippies to green peace to the greenham common women all have said do this,this,this ,and this and we can all have this wonderfull life….this is it…..last chance saloon if we all wake up and act now we’ve got a chance forgete profit let’s do it for the common good and to ensure our futures or our children and there children’s futures ….and we can bloody well start with cleaning up fukushima,lol bye dxx

  13. Andy Worthington says...

    Thanks, Damo.
    I agree about nuclear power as well as nuclear weapons, but unfortunately many supposedly intelligent people – as well as the usual profitmongers – back nuclear power because they aren’t prepared to say that we need to scale down our society’s obsession with energy use. No one should advocate a process that involves a radioactive waste product that no one can work out how to deal with safely.
    I also agree about Fukushima. It’s rarely in the news, and I hear very bad things about it occasionally. The Guardian’s archive is here, which has a few items of interest, but I think you have to go beyond the mainstream to hear more: http://www.theguardian.com/environment/fukushima
    As for the future, I’m with you, as you know. We could live in peace and love each other, but we’re largely sheep led by psychopaths, and we need to sort that out pretty urgently!

  14. Andy Worthington says...

    Melani Finn wrote:

    Very important to remember thank you. Also, all the casualties of nuclear testing deserve a mention, the British testing at Maralinga in Australia for example had a devastating impact on the aboriginal community living there. (Who were not even told).
    http://www.creativespirits.info/aboriginalculture/history/maralinga-how-british-nuclear-tests-changed-history-forever#axzz3iAifW51F

  15. Andy Worthington says...

    Lilia Patterson wrote:

    I agree with Melani @ it’s not strictly true that Japan is the only country that has been subject to nuclear bombing. As Melani says indigenous people around the globe have been targetted by the nuclear arms race just in the name of ‘testing’.

    Russia used the Soviet occupation of Kazakhstan as an excuse under what they classified as nuclear testing, likewise numerous places around the globe have affected by nuclear testing from various different countries. Likewise the US own nuclear testing of areas of the American continent that were primarily Native American reserves could also classify as a form of bombing campaign against the Native population of the Americas. Therefore statistically speaking since a wide range of areas have been bombed with nuclear bombs under what was classified as ‘testing’ mostly of areas classified as populated by indigenous people, that meant the areas were not classified as bombing of ‘enemies’ in war time, due to the status of the bombs being ‘tests’ against indigenous people instead.

    “Since the first nuclear test explosion on July 16, 1945, at least eight nations have detonated 2,053 nuclear test explosions at dozens of test sites”.
    “Most of the test sites are in the lands of indigenous peoples and far from the capitals of the testing governments”.

    https://www.armscontrol.org/factsheets/nucleartesttally

    Nuclear tests in Kazakhstan where the local villagers were used as guinea pigs for Russian nuclear weapons testing and still suffering the consequences to this day.
    http://www.rferl.org/content/soviet_nuclear_testing_semipalatinsk_20th_anniversary/24311518.html

    Native Americans as the most bombed people on earth by nuclear weapons:
    “The Nevada Test Site is in the traditional land-use area of the Western Shoshone and South Paiute. The U.S. government appropriated the land in 1951 for exploding nuclear weapons. The Western Shoshone are the most bombed nation on the earth: 814 nuclear tests have been done on their land since 1951. Substantial radioactive fallout has contributed to a high concentration of cancer and leukemia on the reservation”.
    http://www.culturalsurvival.org/publications/cultural-survival-quarterly/united-states/nuclear-war-uranium-mining-and-nuclear-tests-

  16. Andy Worthington says...

    Melani Finn wrote:

    Yes. Absolutely. And let us not forget testing in the South Pacific. The Bikini Atoll (still unliveable after 70 years) and Marshall Islands having something like nine nuclear powers have their way with them. To this day the scariest film I have ever seen is the footage of Ronald Reagan telling the 70,000 Marshall Island inhabitants that they were no longer going to supply them with tins of Spam and other meagre aid, because, despite testing annihilating the island, “there comes a time in every family when the youngsters need to spread their wings…” and basically support themselves despite the devastation which lead to nothing growing there at all……

  17. damo says...

    For I am oppenheimer the destroyer of worlds Albert einstein warned us of the danger of nuclear technology……have we opened pandoras box

  18. Andy Worthington says...

    Everything about nuclear bombs and nuclear power is so horrible, isn’t it, Damo? But months before Hiroshima, 100,000 people were killed in the blanket bombing of Tokyo, which was comparably dreadful, I believe. The great enemy is war, and the warmongers, whatever disgusting weapons they use. As a pacifist, I think it’s all rather obvious, but the dark side of humanity unfortunately says otherwise.

  19. damo says...

    I feel that john Lennon was right,the world is being run by maniacs for maniacle reasons…..if only just maybe we could to quote him and Yoko give peace a chance….but man has this dark side,the dark monster,that lurks within us all screaming to get out …we will and I hate to say it we will continue to fight ,kill,war,destroy,….untill we are ready to evolve????? Jesus Christ its not that hard……if we can split the atom ……then we can evolve its just getting the willpower to …we as a race seem to be at our best when things are at there worst,let’s use that power we have to change to evolve,change ourselves and this planet into something truly ,incredable,wonderfull.

  20. Andy Worthington says...

    Yes, it is definitely time for a positive change, Damo – a true revolution in human thought and actions, beginning with a revolutionary change of direction in the countries of the West.
    I’m in Bodrum in Turkey right now, on a two-week holiday, relaxing and trying to foment plans for the coming months. The infrastructure has been built up for a massive tourist industry, which is ailing somewhat this year because – I presume – of the current resurgent Islamophobia in the west, but the people are lovely. There’s also a jarring disconnect between the pampered tourists and the increasing numbers of Syrian refugees, many desperately trying to get to the Greek islands, as though Greece is able to provide any solace for them. The authorities here are apparently sometimes engaged in trying to hide the refugees, but overall Turkey has been behaving much, much more generously than the UK. Millions of refugees pouring into the country from Syria, and the government has been granting them citizenship …
    I’m also reading ‘The Establishment’ by Owen Jones, so my thoughts on the UK are rather bleak right now – or perhaps combative would be a better word. But that’s life in the Uk these days, eh? Rage from dawn till the dead of night, totally justified, but up against an establishment whose greed and arrogant sense of entitlement knows no bounds.

  21. damo says...

    My God what a crazed fucked up hellhole Syria is,poor bastards God bless xxxx.the UK is full of rage you can feel it walking down the street esp in London the wealth,class divide is becomeing wider and wider the torie victory esp this bunch of c…s thease pathetic public school boys its like a green light for every naff shitty little hooray Henry and vile yuppie to be as arrogant and as rude as possable to anyone they consider benneth them wich is about 99% of the population …..unless of course you are of some use to them be it finnacial,material,social…otherwise your there to be abused and dispised,my god what a mentality….though thank god I’ve seen people starting to fight back and stand up to them,I personaly never put up with there shit,lol I give them attitude right back and its tireing and boreing but you can’t let them walk all over you they will if they can and God help the vulnerable.

  22. Andy Worthington says...

    The good news, Damo, is that the polls are showing a resounding victory for Jeremy Corbyn. The Parliamentary Labour Party, the Blairites and the establishment liberals are all in despair, but only because of their delusions and/or their self-interest. Why on earth would a right-wing Labour Party beat a right-wing Tory Party in 2020? Five years of a socialist opposition would provide the opportunity to get the message out to the public, unlike the situation from 2010-15, when Labour failed to stand up every day and say whey they were so different from the coalition government.

  23. damo says...

    I think people may finnaly be wakeing up people are becomeing sick of the greed and corruption ,they are sick of corrupt greedy polititions be it left or right there sick of there mentality and Jeremy Corbyn seems like a breath of fresh air a return to some kind of sanity but let’s not celebrate just yet there’s another five years of public school boy hell to go through

  24. Andy Worthington says...

    Yes, there’s certainly nothing at all to celebrate while the Tories are in power, Damo – and especially this particular cruel and cack-handed lot, with their empty arrogance and their completely bankrupt ideas.
    What Jeremy’s candidacy has brought home to me – beyond highlighting the hollowness of the other Labour candidates – is the need to have an opposition leader talking the kind of sense that needs to be talked for the next five years. If that were to happen, we’d at least be moving in the right direction, and in the absence of a credible new party of the people for the people with the numbers to actually get elected, it’s the best we can hope for – well, that and lots of protest, agitation, direct action and civil disobedience, preferably!

  25. Damo says...

    I see the vile new labour Islington blairaites are running scared trying to stick the knife between Jeremy corbyns ribs esp the repellant yvette cooper ,they don’t get it do they,???? People are voting for Jeremy Corbyn because he is not new labour he is the opposite of new labour……no body wants new labour …look what they have done….it was strange seeing the grimacing Spector of tony Blair spouting off …..cheek….how tony blair is not behind bars is unbelievable look what his legacy is a world on the verge of ww3 Jesus …..isil …..are tony blairs greatest achievement ,people want Jeremy Corbyn he may just save labour……..no body but nobody wants new labour and all it stands for nobody.

  26. Damo says...

    I see that super benefits scrounging backwards nazi family the…hopeless…windsors…are whining and sniveling ..don’t take photos of baby George ( 3rd in line to the throne) let him have a childhood well I wonder how my children didn’t have a childhood during ww1 which this disgusting scroungeing family caused …..dear William and Kate many ,many children in this world don’t have childhoods many many children die due to hunger or infection or war ,violence and many live in terror many will die they will not make it to there teenage years so please stop whinning and scroungeing for public sympathy I’m sure a few papperazzi shots is not going to be the end of the world it’s a small price to pay for such a carefree secure extravigant life ,indulged with the absolute best of everything pampered and looked after round the clock free to travel anywhere in the world no doors will ever be closed…..and all costing …hard working family’s and the tax payer quite a substancial some of money every year for such a….lavish…lifestyle….I sure any one of those small children climbing off the migrant boats in Greece will happily trade places …..the windsors need to be told to shut up…they’ve had more than a free ride on the backs of others for a very ,very long time.

  27. Andy Worthington says...

    I am so glad to be away and to be missing the increasingly desperate attempts to undermine Jeremy Corbyn, Damo. I haven’t even been online at all for the last four days! The last I saw was friends on Facebook pointing out the number of articles bashing Jeremy in the Guardian, as it came out in support of Yvette Cooper, who I and millions of others find unattractive as a leader – let alone the fact that she’s married to Ed Balls, who is so popular he lost his seat at the General Election!
    There are some people who want New Labour – essentially, people who share the Tories’ values, but want to think that they’re more liberal, or even socialist! – but there aren’t enough of them to win an election. Someone needs to be able to persuade the 12 million people who don’t vote that there is a reason to vote – and the only person I can see being able to do that is Jeremy.

  28. Andy Worthington says...

    Thanks, Damo, and greetings from Turkey, where the migrant crisis is evident. My understanding is that President Erdogan has granted Turkish citizenship to millions of refugees fleeing Syria, for humanitarian reasons and also in the hope that they’ll vote from him, but that the refugees have no work, so many are trying tp get to Europe where they believe there will be a better future for them. The irony of trying to get to Kos in the hope that they will find a future in Greece, the strangled victim of the EU and the banking system, is lost on all the dimwits and bigots blaming them for existing – or, as a friend who lives here overheard on a boat trip the other day, making specious differences between refugees and economic migrants.
    Whether through wars we’re deeply involved in, or struggling economies that we’re also involved in, as our rich continue to get richer at everyone else’s expense as they have since the imperial and colonial days, the global poor seeking out better lives are our responsibility.
    And as for the Royal Family, yes, well said. There really is no basis on which we should feel sorry for them.

  29. Damo says...

    The guardian is a wankers news paper some of the time not all the time nobody wants yvette cooper she’s an areshole and a grabbing toad she’s a new labour throwback in the Blair mould…..nobody wants……..I was relieved to see how the young people are really digging Jeremy Corbyn ..great..he may just become leader …please…the Greeks seem to be the most humane country on the planet at the moment if you don’t feel for those migrants then you have a heart of stone,they just want a better life ,security and peace they’ve been through enogh shit already without coming up against…..the spite and mean spiritedness of the……nano people……which seems to always always be people with the most….funny isn’t it????? .the windsors that bunch of inbreed fuckwits should just get out off the nations hair and off everybody’s backs ,have some class ,haha……Dix lol

  30. Damo says...

    Yvette cooper just dosent get it….nobody wants new labour again they were a bunch of Snydes and traitors ,bullshit phoney socialists who carried on where thatcher left off thatcher even said her greatest legacy was new labour,they betrayed a great many people in this country not to mention bringing the world to war ,they seemed to hate the working classes and vilifiey and ignore us labelling us as chavs they esp hated the north,lol because most northerners don’t fall for southern middle class bullshit,lol…..Jeremy Corbyn gets my vote because he seems fair and decent unlike most of our political class he has actually done a days work …..he actually seems to care about people and the common good he has integrity and a sense of moral decencey ,he wants people to do well for there in this country a society worth livening in which at present there is not . Yvette cooper is a snake in the grass . Ed miliband wasn’t a bad man he just didn’t have the chops to be a leader yvette cooper being so disloyal to miliband and stepping on and into his shoes vilifiey get and trying to discredit Corbyn ……..that shows the measure of the woman……a moral less serpant not to be trusted in any way.

  31. Andy Worthington says...

    Thanks, Damo. I’m so glad to be away from the British news for a few more days! Not having to put up with most of the Labour leadership contenders has been a bonus while I’ve been in this country of great heat and hospitality. Such nice people in Turkey. London and its vile anger lurking just below the surface will probably be quite a shock after all this.
    That said, my inbox is full of messages from all the Labour contenders – those wanting to be the Mayoral candidate as well as those wanting to be leader – as a result of my signing up and paying £3 so I could vote in the leadership contest – so it’s not as though I’ve managed not to be contaminated at all!

  32. damo says...

    Jeremy Corbyn is way out in the lead ,people like him he’s popular let’s hope he makes leader the others……New labour are dead I hope your nice and refreshed from your holidays the latest has been ids and the dwp have been exposed in the press and on the news for inventing bogas claiments saying how ….sanctions to there benifits has realy helped them,lol

  33. damo says...

    It’s been all over the news the bogus claiments ,lol a leaflet sent out with a fictitious claiment saying how being sanctioned ….realy helped her get her …..cv….together ,lol theve had to withdraw the leaflet the press jumped on it and would you belive it……even the daily mail……the dwp have back peddled comeing out with the usual guff oh its for training purposes ect,ect no body bought the bs..the idiot ids has remained silent letting others take the blame.

  34. Andy Worthington says...

    Great news about Jeremy’s lead, Damo. We need people talking about socialism and social justice on a daily basis, to chip away at the hideously unequal world that the Tories and New Labour have been touting as the only viable political reality ever since Thatcher’s time, and the fall of communism. Who’d have thought, all those years ago, that the demise of the Soviet Union and China’s embrace of capitalism would have only made the right-wingers even more hateful in the West, and even more determined to wipe out every last trace of viable dissent?
    As for the disgraceful Iain Duncan Smith, I am glad to see him in trouble, but the monster must be sacked and never given a job again that involves him having any power over a single human being in need. He is a vile human being.
    http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/aug/18/dwp-admits-making-up-positive-quotes-from-benefits-claimants-for-leaflet

  35. damo says...

    Iain Duncan smith is a chronic galore a mockery of a man a thief a cheat a serial lier …a failed soldier…even prince harrys a better soldier,lol,lol,lol,lol,the Tories hate and mock him but how in gods name is he in a position to inflict so much harm and harm he has done to people who can’t fight back the poorest and most vulnerable people ,the disabled ,he’s a grade a scrounger ,scroungeing of the state ,scroungeing of his wife its a good job he’s surrounded by such security other wise the mob would lynch him and the rest of the both torie and new labour …we need a total social revolution in this country ,and we can start by sending the ultimate benefits scroungers….the windsors .into exile

  36. damo says...

    If this were any other country the likes of ….ids……and the rest of the torie and new labour scum would have been shot a dumped on ditches sorry you have to come back to this place after being somewere so refreshing ,but we must keep fighting thease monsters

  37. Andy Worthington says...

    We must keep fighting indeed, Damo. Got back late last night, happy that it was warm here but sorry to have left Turkey. Wonderful people, a beautiful country and wall-to-wall heat 24/7.
    Iain Duncan Smith, on the other hand …
    Here’s the New Left Project on IDS’s dreadful Centre for Social Justice: http://www.newleftproject.org/index.php/site/article_comments/manufacturing_ignorance_the_centre_for_social_justice_and_welfare_reform_in
    And that horrible 2006 report, ‘Breakdown Britain’, is here: http://www.centreforsocialjustice.org.uk/UserStorage/pdf/Pdf%20Exec%20summaries/Breakdown%20Britain.pdf

  38. damo says...

    I hope your feeling refreshed and unfortunately ready to have to get back into the ring,its funny when we go abroad how differant people are ….so refreshing….so life affirming…..so easy and good company….so attractive….lol ,they show us differant ways of liveing healthyer ways more sustainable ways ,more community and life affirming ways people seem to be left alone to…….live…..there lives they seem more free which is a wonderfull feeling …….so what the hell is this country and its populations problem then…..Jesus,lol

  39. damo says...

    I’ve met some Brazilian people recently and don’t get me wronge Brazil still has a whole bunch of problems ,but thease people seem so …….hopefull….just seeing the bigger picture just full of life ….just completely refreshing…..I want that mentality to rub off on this country to change this place give it some hope back ….but we need to disloge and scrape this political system off from the bottom of our collective shoes first…..dxx

  40. damo says...

    We in this country the labour party we need a leader I like Jeremy Corbyn …..forgive me Andy but ….he’s too old…..great ideas but he’s way past his prime I think he will run out of puff,sorry Andy ….we need a virile,powerfull man in his late 30s early 40s a broud stocky British bulldog with lead in his pencil and love in his heart …our Hugo Chavez who is a socialist who loves people who knows right from wronge who is bright decent fair…….someone to lead this country into the future a fair susstainable future for all someone to SWAT away new labour and bury the Tories for ever….to say no to corperates,and the banks……that’s what we need.

  41. Andy Worthington says...

    Thanks for the welcome back home, Damo. I was so relaxed by the end of my holiday that I’m still quite blissed out, despite the frankly piss-poor weather, the predatory Tories still circling us all like sharks, and the self-destructive Labour leadership contenders. I’m sure Jeremy knows better than all of us that he’s not a young man anymore, and I have no idea how he’ll deal with that when, as I think, he wins the nomination as leader, but we mustn’t forget that he’s the one who’s mobilising people in huge numbers, not by being young, not by making this about “charismatic” leaders, but by making it about issues and by being some sort of socialist Everyman. I’m content for now to see if he can transform the Labour Party from within, and end up with a shadow cabinet that has, in its ranks, a younger successor.

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Andy Worthington

Investigative journalist, author, campaigner, commentator and public speaker. Recognized as an authority on Guantánamo and the “war on terror.” Co-founder, Close Guantánamo, co-director, We Stand With Shaker. Also, singer and songwriter (The Four Fathers) and photographer.
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