Stop British Trident nuclear weapons, fasting campaign


This 4 April 2015 video, recorded at George Square in Glasgow, Scotland, says about itself:

Bairns Not Bombs Scrap Trident. First Minister Of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Campaigners to join fast against Trident

Friday 31st July 2015

ANTI-NUCLEAR campaigners announced yesterday that they will join an international “fast against nuclear weapons” next week.

The four-day protest, in which participants will only consume water, will start next Thursday in London and Edinburgh, as well as in France, Germany and the US, to mark the 70th anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing.

Fasters in Britain will demand the abolition of Trident, with the London fast, organised by Trident Ploughshares, taking place outside the Ministry of Defence. There will also be peaceful protests and die-ins outside Parliament and Downing Street.

Trident Ploughshares activist Angie Zelter said: “I am fasting for real security for all. Nuclear weapons must be banned and the world community must work together to tackle climate change.

“Major political and economic changes must be made if our world is to support life in the future.

“Our presence outside the Ministry of Defence on this 70th anniversary of the nuclear war crimes committed by the US in Hiroshima and Nagasaki is a demand for change. Trident must not be renewed.”

Big anti-austerity demonstrations in London, Glasgow today


This video from the Green Party in England and Wales says about itself:

Charlotte Church calls on all of you to march on 20 June

4 June 2015

This morning deputy leader, Amelia Womack, spoke at a The People’s Assembly Against Austerity event at Unite the union with Charlotte Church.

Amelia spoke of our commitment to campaigning against this government’s austerity agenda. She has spoken to so many people who have already been hit by the cuts, people whose lives are being fundamentally impacted by diminishing access to fundamental support.

Together we will be marching on 20 June in London to call for an end to austerity.

Charlotte spoke to us at the launch to encourage all of you to join the #EndAusterityNow march on 20 June.

By Luke James in Britain:

The road to end George Osborne

Saturday 20th June 2015

London and Glasgow rallies ‘just the start

TWO massive marches drawing hundreds of thousands of people will today start an uprising against austerity and disastrous Osbornomics — which includes plans for rolling protests at Tory conference.

The London People’s Assembly’s End Austerity Now demonstration will start in the City before descending on Parliament Square, while Glasgow’s rally will take place in George Square.

Singer Charlotte Church will lead the capital’s anti-cuts chorus alongside Labour leadership candidate Jeremy Corbyn and Unite union leader Len McCluskey.

Organisers predict that the post-election protests could be the biggest since a TUC demonstration in 2011 saw 500,000 people take to the streets.

More than 250 coaches have been booked to bring people from across Britain for the rallies.

People’s Assembly national secretary Sam Fairbairn said: “I think we’re looking at least 100,000 and possibly upwards of 200,000.

David Cameron thinks because he’s got a slim majority in Parliament it means that he won’t be faced with any kind of opposition.

“Well today we’ll show him this is his opposition.”

And the Star can reveal that resistance to Tory cuts won’t end when the final speaker leaves the stage.

The People’s Assembly is planning an unprecedented four-day protest outside the Tory conference in Manchester later this year, with details for a national demonstration to be staged on October 4 set to be announced from the stage today.

That will be followed by three more protests on specific issues, such as the privatisation of the NHS and Britain’s housing crisis.

“Each day we’ll have a different themed protest depending on what they’re going to be disucssing at the conference,” Mr Fairbairn explained.

“That’s going to sustain the momentum from today’s demonstration.”

There are also set to be People’s Assemblies across the country, and a housing conference on October 10.

The anti-austerity demonstration comes after official figures showed yesterday that Chancellor George Osborne is set to borrow three times more than he planned this year.

Mr Osborne is on course to borrow £75 billion instead of £20bn, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said it showed the Tory had been forced to “bail out his failed economic plan.”

But she warned: “Rather than learning from his mistakes, the Chancellor is about to embark upon a fresh round of savage cuts.”

In her speech at today’s protest, Green MP Caroline Lucas will call on MPs from all parties to oppose his plans.

She will say: “It’s time for all of us who oppose the government’s self-defeating austerity programme to work together

“So my challenge here today to all MPs who call themselves progressive, and especially to those in the Labour Party, is this: Vote against further austerity, protect our public services, and defy your leadership by voting down the savage welfare cap.”

JEREMY CORBYN will today call on fellow Labour leadership candidates to join him at the People’s Assembly march against austerity. The leftwinger will take part in Labour’s first official hustings this morning before rushing back to London to join the demonstration: here.

‘Mary Barbour, Scottish anti-World War I activist, deserves a statue’


Mary Barbour Mary Barbour (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This music video from Scotland is Alistair Hulett, Mrs Barbour’s Army.

The lyrics are:

MRS. BARBOUR’S ARMY

(Alistair Hulett)

Chorus:

‘Cos I’m frae Govan an’ ye’re frae Partick
This yin here’s fae Bridge o’ Weir and thon’s fae Kinning Park
There’s some that’s prods, there’s some that’s catholic
But we’re Mrs. Barbour’s Army and we’re here tae dae the wark

In the tenements o’ Glesga in the year one nine one five
It was one lang bloody struggle tae keep ourselves alive
We were coontin’ oot the coppers tae buy wor scraps o’ food
When the landlords put the rent up just because they could
A’ the factories were hummin’, there was overtime galore
But wages they were driven doon tae subsidise the war
Oot came Mrs. Barbour from her wee bit single end
She said, I’ll organise the lassies if I cannae rouse the men

Mrs. Barbour made a poster sayin’, We’ll no’ pay higher rent
Then chapped on every door of every Govan tenement
She said, Pit this in the windae an’ when you hear me bang the drum
We’ll run oot an’ chase the factor a’ the way tae kingdom come
When the poor wee soul cam roon’ he was battered black and blue
By a regiment in pinnies that knew just what tae do
Mrs. Barbour organised the gaitherin’ o’ the clans
And they burst oot o’ the steamie armed wi’ pots an’ fryin’ pans

Mrs. Barbour’s Army spread through Glesga like the plague
The maisters got the message and the message wisnae vague
While oor menfolk fight the Kaiser we’ll stay hame and fight the war
Against the greedy bastards who keep grindin’ doon the poor
If ye want tae stop conscription stand and fight the profiteers
Bring the hale big bloody sandpit crashin’ doon aroon’ their ears
We’ll no’ starve, said Mrs. Barbour, While the men we ca’ wor ain
Are marchin aff tae hae their hairt’s blood washed like watter doon a drain

Well it didnae take the government that lang tae realise
If you crack doon on the leaders then the rest will compromise
They arrested Mrs. Barbour and they clapped her in the jile
Then they made an awfy big mistake, they let her oot on bail
She ca’d the men oot o’ the factories on the Clyde and on the Cart
They marched up tae the courthoose sayin’, We’ll tear the place apart
Mrs. Barbour’s Army brought the maisters tae their knees
Wi’ a regiment in pinnies backed by one in dungarees.

Mary Barbour campaigned against World War I.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Activists fight for Mary Barbour statue

Saturday 7th March 2015

CAMPAIGNERS launched an appeal yesterday seeking funds for a statue of Glasgow hero Mary Barbour marking the centenary of the 1915 rent strike she and other working-class women organised.

Glasgow Lord Provost Sadie Docherty launched the Remember Mary Barbour Committee, saying the the Red Clydesider had “revolutionised housing and vastly improved social conditions for so many people.”

Barbour became one of the city’s first women councillors in 1920 — standing for the Independent Labour Party. She fought throughout her life for women’s rights and led campaigns for free school milk, municipal wash houses and the first family planning clinic in Glasgow.

Mary Barbour’s Army — the name given to the thousands of working-class women who rallied to the cause — has been mobilised once more by current women activists to campaign around issues like the bedroom tax and the group has developed a play based on her life and campaigns.

The funding appeal and statue bid has the council’s support.

One of the largest demonstrations ever seen in Glasgow took place a 100 years ago towards the end of 1915. Willie Gallacher, who would later become a Communist MP, caught the mood beautifully. He called the huge protest of thousands of rent striking housewives accompanied by shipyard and engineering workers “Mrs Barbour’s Army”: here.

Save Scottish free speech


This video is called Public Sector Workers Mass Strike Protest, Glasgow, Scotland 30/11/11.

By Malcolm Burns in Scotland:

George Square is ours

Monday 20 August 2012

Everyone who reads this should know by now that the TUC has permission to organise a march through central London on October 20.

Calling for A Future That Works, the march should see hundreds of thousands of people on the streets protesting at the government’s austerity economics.

But here in Scotland the STUC is scaling up its fight with Glasgow City Council – a Labour council, we might emphasise – for the basic right to take the Scottish anti-austerity demo on the same day into George Square.

Former (Labour) lord provost Michael Kelly, who writes a kite-flying column for the Scotsman newspaper, argued in support of the council last week that protests were a thing of the past and the main square should be permanently clear of citizens exercising their democratic rights – so that commercial and private visitors can enjoy spending their time and money in the centre of town.

It’s par for the course for the old provocateur, whose main claim to fame is the creation of Glasgow’s Miles Better campaign, along with the licensing of the Mister Happy character, in the days when he made his dough in the public relations business.

And it exactly reflects the thinking in the city chambers, where officials and the city fathers in their bunker overlooking George Square are making plans to eliminate unsightly popular rallies on their doorstep.

Glasgow Council is using the problem of Orange marches as an excuse to end all legitimate civic protest in the city centre.

Orange walks are a problem for lots of reasons but especially because they are so frequent – accounting for over three-quarters of all parades – and because they take up large police resources.

They often feature return marches back to their starting places and they frequently trigger disorder, offensive behaviour and violence.

But trade union and peace campaigns are well organised and stewarded.

And despite the grumbling of Mr Unhappy the ex-provost and his shiny-suited successors our protests are both popular and effective.

Kelly gloats that the anti-war protests didn’t stop his beloved Tony Blair unleashing war on Iraq.

True, but we mobilised the majority on these demos – February 15 2003 saw millions march in London and the biggest Scottish demo on record.

We won the argument. We wiped out any legitimacy Blair’s warmongers may have imagined they had, and I would argue we may even have stopped further disastrous attacks on other targets – at least for a time.

We don’t need reminding of the historic status of George Square and Glasgow city centre in popular protest over the centuries, right up to the present day.

STUC deputy general secretary Dave Moxham points out that citizens of Glasgow – the people the council supposedly represents – actually lined the streets on November 30 last year to applaud the public-service workers on the huge pensions demo.

Glasgow should be worried about the threat to its reputation its council is now posing.

Edinburgh allowed the STUC to march around 25,000 people through Princes Street in the first big demo against Con-Dem austerity on October 23 2010.

Clearly demos in the Scottish capital haven’t stopped its festival being the biggest and most lucrative arts fair in the world.

London can cope with an Olympic Games and a TUC demo for A Future That Works.

Paris, Madrid and Athens manage to have huge public marches without losing their credibility as world cities – indeed, such protests enhance civic reputations.

And we should be defending our own hard-won democratic rights even as we salute movements for democracy in public places around the world.

Glasgow’s visitors, whether they come for business or holidays – or the Commonwealth Games in a couple of years’ time – deserve to see the real city, not one sanitised for their presumed convenience.

The ongoing crash of capitalism and the austerity measures promoted by its apologists is the biggest public issue of the day.

It forms the crucible in which the new world will be forged.

It will either be a dismal future with poverty, inequality and robbery rife in every land or we will win democratic control of our collective destiny and see off the toffs who are stealing our very lives.

To do that we have to assert the collective right to protest. We have to get out on the streets on October 20.

I hope you are mobilising your own community and workplace wherever you are.

And if you’re in Scotland, get in early and lobby Glasgow City Council to let us have our democratic say in our main public forum – George Square.

You can find out more about the Glasgow demo on October 20 at the STUC’s website – www.stuc..org.uk/20-oct – including updates on the fight to march in George Square.

And you can send your views to the council “consultation” on marches and demos at processions@glasgow.gov.uk.

The STUC suggests the wording: “George Square, Glasgow, is a very important civic space and the right to peaceful protest is a basic civil right.

“I want to be in George Square on October 20 and I oppose any attempt to end the use of George Square for such purposes.”
But you can always roll your own.

First Glasgow peregrine falcon nest


This 2012 video from Scotland is peregrine falcon Glasgow.

From Wildlife Extra:

First Peregrines raised in Glasgow

Derelict flats prove ideal for Peregrines

July 2012. A pair of peregrine falcons, that set up home in Glasgow’s iconic Red Road flats, has raised what is believed to be the city’s first ever peregrine chick. The birds of prey became surprise tenants of the multi-story flats, found in the North of the city, after nesting on the 24th floor of the 27-storey building at 10-30 Petershill Court.

The empty building is due to be demolished by Glasgow Housing Association (GHA) as part of the ongoing regeneration of the city. The first block was demolished in June this year.

Traditionally associated with the countryside, changing landscapes have meant that peregrines have had to adapt to living in more unusual places. Local resident Steven McGrath first spotted the birds, which are relatively new additions to Scotland’s cities, late last year.

Steven said: “I’d noticed the peregrines were spending a lot of time around the flats. As the first block was due to be demolished I was concerned the birds might be at risk if they decided to nest within them, so I decided to contact RSPB Scotland and others for advice. I’ve never heard of these birds breeding in Glasgow so I wanted to do everything I could to make sure they were successful.”

Ignored custom built nest

By law it is illegal to disrupt breeding birds, so to assist the nesting pair, GHA and demolition contractor Safedem funded a new purpose-built nesting box for the adult peregrines at a nearby block of flats at Red Road. The nest was constructed and installed by Central Scotland Raptor Study Group, assisted by RSPB Scotland staff.

Despite their efforts, the adult peregrines decided to stick with their original nesting site, where in spring they went on to lay two eggs. Great care was taken to safeguard the nest site. Steven, and volunteers of the Central Scotland Raptor Study Group, installed a research camera to monitor the nest. Despite one egg failing at an early stage, the pair successfully raised a single chick, which left the nest on 12th July.

Toby Wilson, of RSPB Scotland, added: “The Red Road flats housed many new families in their time, so it’s fitting to see the first breeding peregrines in Glasgow join that list. It’s been a real team effort getting to this stage. Thanks to Steven’s dedication and watchful eye, as well as the ongoing cooperation and support of Safedem, Glasgow Housing Association and Central Scotland Raptor Study Group, we’ve given this chick a good start in life.”

After leaving the nest or fledging, the young bird will continue to be fed by its parents for another 4-8 weeks, after which they will normally leave the area.

Recognised as the world’s fastest species, peregrines are renowned for their aerial mastery, reaching impressive speeds as they dive for prey.