(or Press TV) is a TV channel funded by the Iranian Government. Contrary to some of the propaganda trotted out in the West, Iran is not quite the repressive police state it is made out to be. As an Islamic theocracy, Iran implements Sharia law, which includes the death penalty. Although “human rights” organisations oppose the death penalty, it remains popular for certain types of murder with ordinary people worldwide, and as the recent shocking case of the blinding of Ameneh Bahrami
showed, the Iranian courts can temper justice with mercy
Recently, PressTV interviewed a leading member of the Socialist Workers Party
on the riots; the interview was conducted by a woman journalist – women, some claim are second class citizens in Iran. While this lady is most definitely not, she does perhaps need to increase her critical faculty a bit.
She started off by asking him who was telling the truth about the riots – the police and the government, or people like Chris Bambery. He pointed out, correctly, that the first riot had started after a peaceful demonstration in the wake of the shooting of Mark Duggan
. He said too that the police had spread a story that Duggan had fired on them, but that he had been unarmed.
We know now that although Mark Duggan definitely was armed, he did not open fire, or at the very least it seems extremely improbable that he opened fire. For once though, the police appear to have made a genuine mistake rather than simply lied. In the incident, a police officer was hit by a bullet, fortunately it struck his radio, and he suffered only minor injuries. It seems most likely that the police did open fire, perhaps in a moment of panic, and the ricochet or whatever of one of their bullets led to them genuinely believing that the victim had shot one of their number. Mr Bambery is too unquestionably correct when he alludes to rumours spreading, but rioting on the strength of a rumour or two is clearly an act of overt criminality, especially when that rioting leads both to looting and especially to arson, the latter of which can have life-threatening consequences.
Then, Mr Bambery told a whopper when he said the Broadwater Farm riots began after the police killed a black woman. This is not what happened at all; Mrs Jarrett appears to have been involved in a struggle with them while they were making a lawful search of her home. Mrs Jarrett was also extremely fat
, and literally dropped dead of a heart attack during the raid.
Then Mr Bambery went on to claim that little has changed since Broadwater Farm; the police are still seen as being an alien force. Really? As many of the rioters are second or third generation immigrants, and the British police are still overwhelmingly white, the question of who is an alien might be decided otherwise. Having said that, let us not tar everyone with the same brush. The BBC has interviewed some of the black victims
of these riots, and suffice it to say, they take a slightly different view from Mr Bambery.
Then he rants against stop and search, which is now directed against not simply young blacks but against all young people. There is anger at this, even though it is directed against a “supposed” crackdown on guns and knife crime.
His reference to blacks and other young people is clearly part of his class war rhetoric, we must all stand together against the forces of darkness, yeah, yeah. The truth though is that the police are caught between a rock and a hard place, damned if they do, damned if they don’t. Perhaps Mr Bambery hasn’t heard of Operation Trident
As for nothing changing, after the murder of Stephen Lawrence
way back in April 1993, and the failure to convict his alleged killers, the British public was subjected to a relentless campaign about the evils of so-called racism
and especially institutional racism
. The British police, none more so than the Metropolitan Police, went out of their way to recruit black and other non-white officers, though as the cases of Commander Ali Desai and Sergeant Smellie
prove, white police officers do not hold the franchise for either thuggery or plain, old-fashioned corruption.
Mr Bambery went on to relate the scourges of high unemployment and high rates of exclusion of black kids from schools. There is, he says, 20% unemployment amongst the young. Asked about relations between the police and blacks, he alluded again to stop and search, and harassment, or perhaps that should be alleged harassment.
He didn’t mention the fact that many of these young blacks he alluded to as harassed and persecuted are walking around with mobile phones and wearing designer gear. How oppressed can they be? For those who are genuinely oppressed (read impoverished) – and there are a lot of them all over the country, he has no solutions. Like David Cameron he shares a wage slave mentality, and can see no further than creating Mickey Mouse jobs. The reason for this is that the Socialist Workers Party is a Trotskyite organisation committed to the ludicrous concept of world revolution, or permanent revolution as the man called it.
Trotksy was a major player in the Bolshevik Revolution, but after the death of Lenin he lost out in a power struggle with Stalin, and found himself exiled. He was murdered in Mexico by a Stalinist agent in August, 1940, an act that has allowed his followers to portray him as some sort of saint. He was anything but.
In 1930, Trotsky published MY LIFE: An Attempt at an Autobiography
. This was put out in capitalist America by a major publisher Charles Scribner's Sons. In this book, at page 270 he said all manner of rumours circulated about him but “My only profession in New York was that of a revolutionary socialist.”
Professor Antony Sutton poured scorn on that claim, especially when he was able to demonstrate by irrefutable documentary evidence that Trotsky and his gang had been bankrolled by Wall Street “insiders”
, a fact the likes of Mr Bambery simply ignore.
In New York, Trotsky and his wife rented a house, whereupon the Negro janitor absconded with the rent of several tenants. The Trotskies thought their property had been stolen as well, but later they found both their property and the rent. This led the great man to claim that he and his wife were deeply touched:
“The janitor had taken the money of the tenants who had already received their receipts; he did not mind robbing the landlord, but he was considerate enough not to rob the tenants.”
And “it seemed as if a corner of the veil that concealed the black
problem in the United States had lifted.” He called the janitor “A delicate fellow”. Doubtless the landlord had stronger words for him.
The most enlightening passage in his book though comes on page 277. The great man had the use of a chauffeur while in New York. His wife and sons were entertained at a tea room by the wife of a doctor, Dr. M., whereupon his sons asked: “Why doesn't the chauffeur come in?” Some working class hero
Nowhere in this book does he allude to the Kronstadt revolt, where the great champion of the proletariat ordered the shooting of workers “like ducks in a pond”, though seven years later he published another book, a bitter attack on the Soviet Union – which had of course betrayed the revolution. In THE REVOLUTION BETRAYED: WHAT IS THE SOVIET UNION AND WHERE IS IT GOING?
he gave his idealistic view of the future:
“In a communist society, the state and money will disappear. Their gradual dying away ought consequently to begin under socialism.”
Just like that, the state will disappear, and so will money, and we will all live happily ever after. Neither Trotsky nor Mr Bambery explain how this will happen, nor for example why a doctor who has to train for a minimum of seven years will perform his duties for no material reward. Nor how society is going to track down and bring to justice the Levi Bellfields
and Ted Bundys
of the future. Perhaps this new world will be so perfect that there will be no more rape and murder?
One thing there certainly will not be if the heirs of Trotsky ever get their way in Iran is religion, for this is what Trotsky’s predecessor, the Communist theorist Karl Marx, called the opium of the people. Perhaps somebody should tell the lady from Press TV?