This 23 January 2020 video from London England is called Letter to the [British] Foreign Office from the Chilean community in the UK.
This 23 January 2020 video from London England is called Letter to the [British] Foreign Office from the Chilean community in the UK.
By Lamiat Sabin in Britain:
Thursday, January 16, 2020
Grenfell: Johnson appoints engineer with links to the firm that made the tower’s cladding to the inquiry
Former Labour MP Emma Dent Coad tells the Star that the PM has driven the ‘final nail in the coffin’ of justice
BORIS JOHNSON has driven the “final nail in the coffin” of justice for the victims of Grenfell by appointing an engineer to the fire inquiry who has links to the firm which made the tower’s cladding, former Kensington MP Emma Dent Coad told the Star today.
Mr Johnson picked Benita Mehra last month to assist Sir Martin Moore-Bick, who is leading the inquiry into the June 2017 disaster that killed 72 people.
Ms Mehra previously ran the Women’s Engineering Society, which received a £71,000 grant from the charitable arm of Arconic, the US-based maker of the aluminium composite cladding that fuelled the Grenfell fire.
She will be one of two experts helping Mr Moore-Bick with at least 18 months of hearings into the events leading up to the fire.
Ms Dent Coad, who lost her seat last month, said people affected by the fire have now abandoned all hope that the second phase of the inquiry will bring any justice.
“They ripped the firefighters to shreds in the first phase and now what I hear from people in the community is that this is proof that it is — as we feared — an Establishment stitch-up,” she said.
“People are in shock but will be regrouping and planning over the next few days. We were told over and over again that we should trust the process — but we can’t.
“The appointment is the last thing we want to hear. The whole idea of the second phase has been so invested in and for this to come about is horrific.”
Grenfell United vice-chair Karim Mussilhy, who lost his uncle in the fire, is calling for Ms Mehra to stand down before hearings restart on January 27. He described the appointment as a “disgrace.”
A spokesperson for the inquiry said it was confident that Ms Mehra’s former role would “not affect her impartiality.”
Two and a half years after Grenfell fire: Tens of thousands of UK households live in buildings covered in flammable cladding: here.
This 3 January 2020 video from the USA says about itself:
It appears that Donald Trump’s son, Eric Trump, knew in advance about the unauthorized assassination of Iranian Quds leader Qassim Soleimani, publishing a strange tweet and subsequently deleting it.
By Ceren Sagir in Britain:
Friday, January 3, 2020
Trump’s drone assassination of Iranian general raises tensions to boiling point, campaigners warn
THE assassination of Iran’s top general, Qasem Soleimani, has raised tensions in the Middle East to boiling point, anti-war campaigners have warned.
Stop the War Coalition has called a demonstration outside Downing Street at 2pm on Saturday under the heading No War with Iran.
The commander of the elite Quds Force, who led Tehran’s military operations in the Middle East, was targeted by the United States in a drone strike at Baghdad’s international airport early today and Iran and its allies are calling for a “harsh vengeance.”
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said: “The US assassination of Iranian general Qasem Soleimani is an extremely serious and dangerous escalation of conflict in the Middle East with global significance.
“The UK government should urge restraint on the part of both Iran and the US, and stand up to the belligerent actions and rhetoric coming from the United States.
“All countries in the region and beyond should seek to ratchet down the tensions to avoid deepening conflict, which can only bring further misery to the region, 17 years on from the disastrous invasion of Iraq.”
Labour MP Richard Burgon warned that US President Donald Trump’s is risking engagement in a war with Iran that would be “even worse than that on Iraq.”
Labour MP Rebecca Long-Bailey called for a de-escalation of tensions and resistance against “any rush to war.”
She said: “With this assassination, President Trump is pushing us to the brink of another disastrous war that would cost countless lives, further destabilise the region and make us all less safe.”
Stop the War Coalition’s Lindsey German called the killing of Gen Soleimani “an act of war by Donald Trump”, and said the act violated all agreements with the Iraqi government.”
She said: “Trump has been heading for war since tearing up the nuclear deal with Iran, and, if he succeeds, will create a bigger war than we have seen in the Middle East. It will draw in major players across the region including Israel, Saudi Arabia and possibly Russia.
“This is the bloody result of two decades of war started by the US after 9/11.
“Those of us who said war in Iraq would lead to endless conflict and misery were absolutely right to do so.
“And those who justified those wars are now looking on while the situation escalates.”
Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab called for a de-escalation of tensions, adding that further conflict “is in none of our interests.”
Chairman of the foreign affairs committee in the last parliament Tom Tugendhat suggested that the US had neglected to warn the British government about the airstrike.
And while Labour MP Stella Creasey called for MPs to immediately return to Parliament, there was no response from Prime Minister Boris Johnson, busy celebrating New Year on the private Caribbean island of Mustique.
Labour’s shadow secretary Emily Thornberry called Mr Raab’s statement insufficient and criticised the PM for having “pathetically unopposed” Mr Trump pulling out of the Iran nuclear deal.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo later thanked Mr Raab for recognising the “aggressive threats posed” by the Quds Force during a phone conversation between the pair.
Mr Trump, who tweeted an image of the US flag shortly after the strike, later said that Gen Soleimani was “plotting to kill” many US citizens and that “he should have been taken out many years ago.”
But US Senator Bernie Sanders said he would do “everything in [his] power” to prevent a war with Iran and would “apologise to no-one.”
The presidential hopeful, competing for the Democrat nomination, said: “Trump’s dangerous escalation brings us closer to another disastrous war in the Middle East that could cost countless lives and trillions more dollars.
“Trump promised to end endless wars, but this action puts us on the path to another one.”
General Soleimani and Iranian and Iraqi advisers were leaving Baghdad airport in two cars when they were hit by the US strike near a cargo area. Several missiles struck the convoy and, according to Iranian state TV, at least 10 people are believed to have died.
The [Iranian opposition] Association for Defence of Peace, Solidarity & Democracy warned that any war on Iran would inevitably strengthen the grip of its theocratic regime “and thus weaken the people’s struggle for human and democratic rights and social justice.”
This 29 January 2019 video from London, England says about itself:
Since the tragedy at Grenfell, local residents have come together once a month to silently march to the site of the tower. Lowkey explains how this is a community with a history of organising in the face of adversity.
By Lamiat Sabin in London, England:
Sunday, December 15, 2019
Grenfell supporters call for justice and rally against Tory government in 13th march
Outside Grenfell Tower at a rally at the end of the march, community youth worker and journalist Daniel Renwick said North Kensington will be looked on by the rest of the country as an example of how to “continue the fightback” against the government, as the second phase of the Grenfell inquiry starts in the new year.
He extended solidarity to the Hillsborough campaign for justice that suffered a setback last month when match commander David Duckenfield was found not guilty of gross negligence manslaughter of 95 Liverpool fans.
Hundreds of people who attended the march and rally on Saturday evening also heard from rapper Lowkey, real name Kareem Dennis.
He said “psychological warfare” had been inflicted on Kensington residents by the Liberal Democrats during the election campaign, which led to the splitting of the anti-Tory vote and the unseating of Labour MP Emma Dent Coad.
Mr Dennis took aim at the deluge of Lib Dems’ campaign literature that urged Kensington residents vote for their ex-Conservative candidate Sam Gyimah.
Mr Gyimah got 9,000 votes and led to the election of Tory candidate Felicity Buchan, who was just 150 votes ahead of Ms Dent Coad.
Ms Dent Coad, who was the first-ever Labour MP to represent Kensington but had a majority of just 20, was one of the highest-profile casualties of the general election in which Labour suffered heavy losses.
She has been attending Grenfell marches since the fire broke out in June 2017, while Ms Buchan has admitted to never going on one.
During the rally, Mr Dennis said: “We have all been lied to by leaflets that have been put through our doors in order to get us to vote against our own interests.
“In getting letters claiming they’re from an election specialist saying we should vote for the Liberal Democrats to avoid a Tory government — and in tiny small print on the bottom of that letter that says ‘sent on behalf of the Liberal Democrats’ — we were lied to.
“We have lost someone who was a champion of this community in Parliament who has been replaced by someone who belongs to a party that was responsible for the fire.
“That person [Ms Buchan] does not represent us and cannot represent us and should not be normalised or legitimised.
“The amount of disinformation, the amount of manipulation that took place was unprecedented in the history of this country.”
Ms Dent Coad told the Star that people have come up to her in tears over her losing her seat.
“Everywhere I go I have overwhelming support from people who are saying the same thing [as Mr Dennis], and that I will always be their MP — which is very moving. I will do as much as I can,” she said.
She revealed to the Star that she underwent surgery for breast cancer on the Monday before the election, after being diagnosed in the middle of the campaign.
She added that she is committed to continuing to speak out for Kensington even though she will no longer be in Parliament.
This 28 November 2018 video from Britain says about itself:
By Lamiat Sabin in London, England:
Saturday, December 7, 2019
Lamiat Sabin profiles EMMA DENT COAD who has a majority of just 20 in Kensington — Labour’s most marginal seat
KENSINGTON will be under the spotlight on election night in under a week’s time when millions of people will see if the once-Tory stronghold and one of the most diverse constituencies in the country will remain red.
Emma Dent Coad was just days into her new job when the 2017 Grenfell tragedy struck, and the pain of the catastrophe that killed 72 people is still very raw in the local collective consciousness.
I met her in Kensington where she was born and has lived for decades – on the same road where I have lived most of my life.
“Grenfell was more of a threat to the government than Brexit — and it will be even more so in the second phase of the inquiry,” Dent Coad warned.
The second phase, starting next month, is expected to look into the actions, or inaction, of the Conservative-run Kensington and Chelsea Council, the tenant-management organisation, and the companies that supplied and fitted the flammable cladding.
Dent Coad has reported Sam Gyimah, her Liberal Democrat challenger and a former Tory MP, to the police for alleging that she had a role, as a local councillor at the time, in discussing the use of the cladding in the tower’s renovation.
She has stated that as a backbench opposition councillor she had not been on committees that would have made those decisions.
“Gyimah put me in danger actually, I had hundreds of death threats,” she said.
She also recalled that at a monthly Grenfell silent march, Gyimah “got it completely wrong” by placing himself at the front with survivors and the bereaved. She said Labour MPs always march at the back: “it’s not a gig.”
Dent Coad also described him as “entitled and disrespectful” for having repeatedly told residents that he gave up his East Surrey seat and a ministerial job in order to stand in Kensington.
Also out to unseat Dent Coad is Tory candidate and local resident Felicity Buchan. Rather than local issues, her campaign literature focuses on her pledge to the pro-EU constituency to “move on” from Brexit by embracing PM Boris Johnson’s deal, and promises to campaign to cut business rates and stamp duty.
For Labour, dozens of people have come from across London to canvass for Dent Coad, a hard-working, committed socialist who describes the volunteers as “absolutely amazing”.
On a cold, drizzly evening I bumped into a cluster of the canvassers who were accompanied by a reporter from Japan’s only communist newspaper, who said the constitiency is the subject of international focus owing to Kensington’s diversity and Labour’s slim majority.
Labour’s bedrock support is in the north of Kensington, where there is a higher concentration of social housing, which is home to Notting Hill Carnival and used to be the stomping ground of notorious slum landlord Peter Rachman.
The south of Kensington covers Kensington Palace and the “billionaire’s row” of mansions and embassies stretching up to Chelsea.
The choice for Kensington residents, when it comes down to it, is between Labour and a blue or yellow Conservative.
In the words of a canvasser, when I asked about what they thought of Gyimah: “He’s a Tory, that’s all you need to know.”
By Bethany Rielly, in central London, England:
Tuesday, December 3, 2019
No to Trump, No to Nato
Speakers took to the stage to defend the NHS, condemn the discriminatory policies of the Trump administration and call for the abolition of the “aggressive” Nato alliance. …
Doctors and nurses led the march towards Buckingham Palace in symbolic resistance against plans to sell off the NHS in a future trade deal with the US.
As thousands marched in the streets, British politicians sparred on the campaign trail while Mr Trump contradicted himself on his designs for the NHS.
Labour hit back by accusing the Tories of keeping Britons “safe on the cheap.”
“Real security doesn’t just come from strong laws and intelligence, it also comes from effective public services that have the funding they need,” a Labour spokesperson said.
Within hours of landing on British soil, Mr Trump claimed that he “had never even thought” about NHS privatisation, despite declaring earlier this year that “everything is on the table” in trade talks, including the health service.
Mr Trump said the US wouldn’t want the NHS “even if it was served on a silver platter.”
Trump said that to help Conservative Boris Johnson win the British general election.
So, that, if Johnson would win the election, then he would serve the NHS to Trump on a silver platter. And Trump would accept.
But Mr Corbyn, who sent a letter to the US president calling for assurances that the NHS will be taken off the table, was not convinced by Mr Trump’s rambling U-turn.
“I’m pleased that he said that. But then why have these talks gone on for two years?” he said in an interview with Jeremy Vine on BBC Radio 2. “Why have the documents only been released in redacted form?”
At the London rally, doctor and activist Sonia Adesara was also not reassured by the president’s backtracking.
“It’s complete rubbish,” she told the Morning Star. “Trump a couple months ago said the opposite — saying that the NHS was on the table. He said publicly that he wants the UK to pay more for drugs.
“When they say the NHS is off the table, we know this is another lie. If it is off the table then why wasn’t it taken off the table in the secret trade talks?”
She said it was “crucial” that these lies were exposed as the election approaches, warning that more years of Tory rule would be “disastrous to our country.”
Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab also admitted that the US would be able to ramp up drug prices after Brexit when pressed on BBC Radio 4 today.
Shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth claimed this showed that “Boris Johnson is opening the door to a Trump trade deal that will force our NHS bills through the roof.”
Labour unconvinced by Trump’s NHS privatisation U-turn. Shadow chancellor John McDonnell said the US president has a ‘passing relationship with reality and the truth’: here.
Tory underfunding blamed for 5,000 deaths in hospital: here.
THE ENDLESSLY repeated slogan that ‘The NHS is Not for Sale’ is completely empty in the face of the fact that US companies and other privateers are already taking over and making vast profits out of the NHS and are determined to leech even more out of the NHS £120 billion annual budget: here.