British anti-Trump demonstrators speak out

Protesters at the anti-Trump rally in Leeds, England

From the World socialist Web Site in Britain:

Participants in the anti-Trump rallies in the UK speak out

By our reporters

16 July 2018

Demonstrations continued in Europe over the weekend against the presence of US president Donald Trump, a widely hated figure.

On Sunday, several thousand people protested against Trump in the Finnish capital of Helsinki, ahead of his arrival for a meeting in the city with Russian president Vladimir Putin. Reuters reported that 16 demonstrations were expected to be held in Helsinki on Sunday and Monday.

Protests against Trump’s visit to Britain continued Saturday with thousands demonstrating in Edinburgh and outside the Turnberry golf resort in Ayrshire in south-western Scotland. Turnberry is one of two golf courses Trump owns in Scotland. Police mounted a massive show of force, involving 5,000 officers and costing £5 million [US$6.6 million].

On Friday, protests against Trump’s visit were held in London and various towns and cities across the UK.

Socialist Equality Party members and supporters intervened at protests in Leeds, Manchester and Sheffield, and distributed copies of the SEP statement, “What does it really mean to ‘Stop Trump?’ The working class must be mobilised against capitalism and for socialism”.

In Leeds, a rally in Dortmund Square was attended by 600 protesters, who after listening to speeches marched through the city centre.

Veteran Trotskyist Barbara Slaughter addressed the rally. She said, “Tens of thousands of people are marching today to express their disgust and opposition to the policies of Donald Trump and the American government. Trump is not an aberration, but a living expression of the rotten, degenerate condition of the world capitalist system.

“The big question that faces workers and youth all over the world is how the fight against everything Trump represents should be conducted and on what perspective.”

Referencing a previous speaker’s support for both Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party and the Labour Party in Britain, Slaughter argued, “Hillary Clinton does not represent the working people of America in any way. She was the favoured candidate of Wall Street. She was secretary of state for many years under President Obama and advocated every war waged by the US since Iraq.

“Rather than protecting the rights of refugees fleeing from the war-torn countries of Central and South America, she boasted that on numerous occasions she had voted to make money available to build a barrier to stop them from entering the US.” …

“There is only one way to oppose Trump and the capitalist system he defends. The working class must unite across national boundaries in a common struggle against this system to end austerity and war. …”

Slaughter received a round of applause and cheers from a portion of the crowd.

Bethany, a PhD student, told WSWS reporters, “I came down here today in opposition to the rise of neo-fascist politics, be that through Trump or what is happening in Britain—it is permeating the political landscape. It would be easy to criticise Trump in isolation, but we need to stand up to Trump in the context of what is happening in our country, in terms of immigration, racism and the rise of fascism in Europe.

“Trump is a symptom of something much wider going on historically and politically. Trump’s policies and image can’t be considered in isolation from previous presidents and once Trump is out, we can’t return to a previous complacency.”

Rosie, Stan and Jenny

Stan attended with Rosie and Jenny, who are all sixth form pupils at Archbishop Holegate School in nearby York.

Stan explained he had aspirations to work in the film industry, especially in documentaries, to “highlight the problems in the world.”

“There are so many problems in America, problems with the economy, social issues, poverty, lack of jobs.” He said. “There is great fear for the future and Trump and his supporters have harnessed that fear and blamed all the problems on immigration.

“I believe that most Trump voters are good people. They have been conditioned to believe that the problems they face have been caused by immigrants and not by the right-wing government, which is whipping up resentment between groups to carry out policies that benefit a very small minority.”

Barbara Slaughter (left), with Sally

Sally, a support worker from Leeds, was holding a placard highlighting the scandal of contaminated drinking water in Flint, Michigan:

“I am carrying this to highlight the situation in the city of Flint in the US where the people are being poisoned by the water supply. It is unbelievable that people don’t have access to clean water in an advanced country like the United States of America. It should be a basic human right to have clean water.

“Trump’s policies are utterly divisive. The government is trying to sow divisions, making neighbour blame neighbour, instead of understanding the truth that it is all about the power of big business.”


Tahmineh, a post-graduate student in bio-medical science at Leeds University, commented, “We live in a dangerous world because governments, especially in America, are spreading hate in an attempt to separate people.

“I am an Iranian and I can see that Trump’s policies are directed against the people of Iran, and other countries, of course. The US government claims it is fighting terrorism, but it is a lie. It is all about the interests of big business. For example, take his support for Saudi Arabia. The children of Yemen are in a terrible condition. They are starving. Normal people do not support what Trump and his government are doing. But they have the power and they do what they want.

“It is not just Trump as an individual, of course. It could not be the work of just one person. He represents a whole layer. He represents capitalism.”

In Manchester, around 2,000 people demonstrated against Trump in the city’s main Albert Square.

Beth from the Abortion Rights Campaign told the WSWS, “I am here today because I believe that Trump is a threat against pro-choice, and what he is doing affects women not just in the US, but here as well. Trump will roll back the gains that have been made, legitimise and give life to the so-called pro-life movement here.

“I believe that Trump is flippant and reckless in the way he behaves, and he does not represent working class people. He has exploited these people, who are downtrodden. He is anti-democratic and has made attacks on civil liberties.”

Zoran, an unemployed worker, attended the protest “because I am sick of the right-wing Brexit and the fascist Trump. He is out of control in what he is doing.

“With his being elected, the risk of war is greater, and with all the economic problems and tariffs being imposed, what’s going to happen next? I think he is a fascist the way he has treated the Mexican children. It’s disgusting, locking kids up in cages, separating them from their parents.”

Roger, a regular reader of the WSWS, told us, “What has brought me here is my abhorrence of imperialism, war, neo-liberalism and fake democracy.”

In Sheffield, around 2,000 attended a protest outside the City Hall.

Helen, a 26-year-old former student from Sheffield, who is unemployed after losing her job through ill health, said, “Trump is a powerful man with the world literally at his fingertips. He is the most powerful person on earth and it scares me to even say that.

“I’ve noticed the large number of placards and banners and most of the slogans are directed at Trump’s treatment of women. It should be an issue we have to oppose, but the fear of war is far more important to me.

“It’s disgusting the way refugees are treated across the world, and the Mexican families being abused by Trump and his aides should stand out more.

“I consider myself a socialist, not a member of any party but becoming more aware of the class differences. All the wealth people like Trump have and the poverty of the homeless have made me more politically aware. I support Jeremy Corbyn, but can’t bring myself to join the Labour Party.”

TRUMP CLAIMS U.K. PROTESTERS WERE PRO-TRUMP More than 250,000 people demonstrated across the U.K. Friday in protest of Trump and his policies. Yet the president told a baffled Piers Morgan that “many, many” of the demonstrations were actually pro-Trump. [HuffPost]

The U.S. government reportedly forked over more than $77,000 to Trump’s Turnberry golf course in Scotland ahead of the president’s recent stay there.

Canadian Rabbis Call On Trudeau To Rescind Refugee Agreement With U.S.: here.


Finnish protests before Trump-Putin summit

This video from Finland is called Helsinki Protests Ahead Of Trump-Putin Summit.

15 Juy 2018 Helsinki demonstrators, photo REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger

Trump vs. the Democrats: Two reactionary factions fight over foreign policy. 16 July 2018. Monday’s scheduled meeting between US President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin has been preceded by a massive barrage of propaganda from the Democrats, their allied media outlets and the US intelligence agencies, demanding that Trump intensify military pressure on Russia: here.

US PRESIDENT Trump and Russian President Putin held a historic meeting in Finland yesterday in which they talked about joint cooperation with Israel in dealing with Syria: here.

Who’s Thrilled With The Helsinki Summit, Besides Russia? Israel. Read more here.

By Bill Van Auken in the USA, 17 July 2018:

No sooner had the US and Russian presidents finished their joint press conference than CNN’s anchor in Helsinki, Anderson Cooper, an heir to the Vanderbilt fortune who interned with the CIA before going into television news, announced to his viewers that they had been “watching the most disgraceful conduct by an American president…that I have ever seen.”

”The most disgraceful conduct by an American president”? That’s really saying something!

More disgraceful than George W. Bush’s launching of a war of aggression against Iraq based on lies, which claimed more than a million lives? More disgraceful than Barack Obama’s drone assassination campaign that murdered thousands? More disgraceful than Trump’s own savage war on immigrants, in which the deliberate torture of children has become a weapon?

Trump and Theresa May, Beatles parody song

This 14 July 2018 parody music video from Britain is an updated version of an earlier Donald Trump-Theresa May parody of the same Beatles song: I wanna hold your hand.

It says about itself:

The Tweetles – I Wanna Hold Your Hand

Donald Trump’s Beatles tribute band return with a little helping hand from UK Prime Minister Theresa May.


DT: Oh yeah, I’ll tell you something – my mother’s from Scotland
TM: Oh really? How very lovely
DT: Mind if I hold your hand?
Both: I want to hold your hand

TM: Oh please say to me you’ve got a nice deal planned
DT: Yeah sure, just give us all the NHS stuff – and let me hold your hand
Both: I want to hold your hand

Both: And when I touch you I feel slightly annoyed
But it just looks so damn good on celluloid

TM: Oh please say to me you won’t withdraw from NATO
DT: Okay, but hold my hand first
TM: My goodness, Donald – it’s like a sweet potato!
Both: It’s got the colour and texture of a sweet potato
TM: But not the size

Both: And when I touch you I think I might be sick
But one must do unpleasant things in politics

DT: Oh yeah, I just signed an order for Muslims to be banned
TM: The BBC might ask you about that – but me, I’ll hold your hand
Both: I want to hold your hand

For the second successive evening Tuesday, Theresa May’s Conservative government barely survived, as vital votes were held in parliament on Brexit legislation: here..

Trump still separating families, animated cartoon

This 12 July 2018 animated cartoon by Mark Fiore from the USA says about itself:

Pablo: A Family Separation Theme Song

Just a little reminder that Trump’s “government-sanctioned child abuse” is STILL happening. More info here.

At A Border Town In Mexico, Mothers Separated From Their Children Wait — And Wait: here.

Only 57 of 3,000 immigrant children have been reunited with parents: here.