ISJ Index | Main Newspaper Index

Encyclopedia of Trotskyism | Marxists’ Internet Archive

International Socialism, Winter 1965/66



Letter to Readers


From International Socialism, No.23, Winter 1965/66, p.18.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’Callaghan for ETOL.


We had hoped to repeat the successful weekend school which IS organised in Leeds last summer in Newcastle this November, but it has not been possible. However, we shall hold another school as soon in the New Year as we can – to discuss the journal and issues presented there, to discuss what we should be looking at, and take key issues further. IS itself does not yet appear often enough to give us time to let you know about schools, but they are advertised in Labour Worker and we write directly to anyone else we think might be interested. If you would like to hear details of schools, send in your name and address to us.

David Miller, a Roman Catholic pacifist, was arrested on 18 October in New York by the FBI for burning his draft card at a public rally against the war in Vietnam. He is liable under Johnson’s latest emergency law (to hit those that refuse to fight in Vietnam) to five years’ gaol and a 10,000 dollar fine. Miller was only the first, and many others have by now followed him. Protests should be sent immediately to the US Embassy (Grosvenor Square, London W1), reiterating firmly the right to resist bearing arms. The Berkeley Vietnam Day Committee in its leaflet for all military personnel puts it thus:

‘As a soldier you have been trained to obey orders, but as a human being you must take responsibility for your own acts. International and American law recognise that an individual soldier, even if acting under orders, must bear final legal and moral responsibility for what he does. This principle became a part of law after World War II, when the Allied nations, meeting in London, decided that German war criminals must be punished even if they committed war crimes under orders. This principle was the basis of the Nuremberg trials.’ (Attention All Military Personnel) Soldiers and draftees of the world unite!

A new and lively Northern paper, Industrial Youth, has just appeared, and aims to spotlight the struggle for better wages and conditions by apprentices and young workers. Copies can be had from 39 Alder Road, Rochdale, Lancashire, at tuppence per copy plus postage. Donations will be put to very good subversive purposes.

The expulsion from the Labour Party on 9 November of Ken Coates, President of the Nottingham City Labour Party, is the culmination of a long campaign to vilify him and his socialist activities within the Party. The procedures employed by his Constituency Party (West Nottingham) seem on the evidence available extremely dubious even by the notorious standards of Transport House hatchet work, and the charges labelled humourously trivial if they had not produced such a vindictive result. If Ken Coates is to be expelled, all of us on the Left should feel the draught – the Party leadership is clearly determined to use its period of Government office and the enforced discipline in the Parliamentary Party, to samp on all socialists in the constituency parties in order to unify the tame rump that is left around their own anti-socialist policies in office. If we are to be prized out for our honesty, let there be a lot of noise over it – letters or resolutions of indignant protest to the West Nottingham Constituency Labour Party and Transport House.

Our contributors in this issue include: Constance Lever, 24, a London town-planner; David Baker, formerly of the Young People’s Socialist League, studied for four years at a Japanese University and was active in Zengakuren, has now returned to Detroit; Ian Birchall, 25, lectures in French in London and is Business Manager of Labour Worker; George Rawick, an American Marxist historian, who has taught at Chicago, Wayne State and now Oakland University, has contributed to Labor Action, New International, Dissent, and IS (The American Negro Revolution, IS 16), and was editor of the US student magazine, Anvil and Student Partisan, from 1955 to 1957; Alex Allison, 43, self-educated at different Aberdeen schools, has done many different jobs in different parts of England, currently in Manchester, began writing in 1951.

P.S. We always like comments, criticisms, attacks; if you have them, send them in and we’ll try to print them next time.

Top of page

ISJ Index | Main Newspaper Index

Encyclopedia of Trotskyism | Marxists’ Internet Archive

Last updated on 8.10.2007