Sunday, 2 November 2014

During WW1 1914-1918.

A reality check on the myth of World War 1 as a period of "pulling together" , of national unity, patriotism and of "we're all in this together".  As always when it comes from the politicians and bosses this was a load of lies.

During the World War 1 Period of 1914-1918:-

* Rudolf Rocker was imprisoned in Alexandra Palace during the war and deported in 1918.
*Emma Goldman and Alexander Berkman imprisoned under the US' Espionage Act in 1917.
*Errico Malatesta consistently denounced World War 1 in writing both in 1914 and 1916 for Freedom.
*During ww1 Wobblies from the IWW suppressed, arrested and killed.

* 1914 saw  "3,000 unemployed demonstrate in Detroit; IWW gains control of Unemployed Convention in San Francisco. New York unemployed, led by Wobbly Frank Tannenbaum, occupy churches; Union Square unemployed riot. Sioux City, Iowa, free speech fight by the IWW."

*Christmas Truce of 1914

* 1915,  Joe Hill is executed in Utah by Copper Bosses.

* January 15th 1915: Wobbly Ralph Chaplin completes his song Solidarity Forever,

* Mary Barbour headed the Glasgow Rent strikes of 1915 with 'Barbours army' as they were called.

* The Industrial Workers of the World(IWW) voted  in the 1916 convention  and  released an anti-war resolution saying " We, the Industrial Workers of the World, in convention assembled, hereby re-affirm our adherence to the principles of industrial unionism, and rededicate ourselves to the unflinching, unfaltering prosecution of the struggle for the abolition of wage slavery and the realization of our ideals in Industrial Democracy.

With the European war for conquest and exploitation raging and destroying our lives, class consciousness and the unity of the workers, and the ever-growing agitation for military preparedness clouding the main issues and delaying the realization of our ultimate aim with patriotic and therefore capitalistic aspirations, we openly declare ourselves the determined opponents of all nationalistic sectionalism, or patriotism, and the militarism preached and supported by our one enemy, the capitalist class.

We condemn all wars, and for the prevention of such, we proclaim the anti-militaristic propaganda in time of peace, thus promoting class solidarity among the workers of the entire world, and, in time of war, the general strike, in all industries.
We extend assurances of both moral and material support to all workers who suffer at the hands of the capitalist class for their adherence to these principles, and call on all workers to unite themselves with us, that the reign of the exploiters may cease, and this earth be made fair through the establishment of industrial democracy."

* 1916- The Everett Massacre, Frank Little Murdered,  Australian Wobblies tried for opposing conscription and the IWW outlawed.

* 1917: The Etaples Mutiny,

* French Army Mutinies of 1917.

*The London transport women workers' strike  1918.

* November 13th 1918 Mutiny in Shoreham.

*4,000 troops demonstrated at Dover, in support of the Folkestone mutiny.   


* 1919 Southhampton : 20,000 soldiers went on strike and took over the docks.
* January 1919: RAF BIGGIN Hill:  Soldiers went on strike. "At the end of January 1919, the men of the Army Ordnance and Mechanical Transport sections at the Val de Lievre camp called a mass meeting which decided to mutiny."January 1919 there were mutinies on the mine-sweepers at Rosyth.
*three thousand demonstrating troops marched on Whitehall in February 1919. At Battersea, troops of the Army Service Corps went on strike. They were joined by Service Corps men in Camberwell and Kempton Park.
* March 1919 Kinmel Park Riots by Soldiers.


*May 1919 Soldiers Riot in Aldershot with some carrying the red flag.

*1919 Luton: Riots by ex-servicemen against the hypocrisy of the establishment.



* Putkowski states that there were over 300,000 courts martials between 1914 and 1920 and he estimates that about 250,000 British troops were involved in ‘strikes, demonstrations and other forms of direct action on an unprecedented scale’ towards the end of the war.

* Alexander Berkman said of World War 1,   "The ‘war for democracy’, the ‘war to end war’ proved the greatest sham in history. As a matter of fact, it started a chain of new wars not yet ended. It has since been admitted, even by Wilson himself, that the war served no purpose except to reap vast profits for Big Business. The World War built huge fortunes for the lords of finance — and tombs for the workers.......In times of peace you slave in field and factory, in war you serve as cannon fodder — all for the greater glory of your masters"

*  Harry Patch(RIP) the last (until recently) surviving soldier of ww1 stated "I felt then, as I feel now, that the politicians who took us to war should have been given the guns and told to settle their differences themselves, instead of organising nothing better than legalised mass murder"

*The First World War was ended by heroes but not by soldiers 'fighting for their countries' but by the working class fighting for their class.

Here’s a black poppy for this Remembrance Day. 




This goes out to those who who died in, and all those who resisted and continue to resist, the capitalists’ wars. To those who mutinied, went on strike, shirked, refused to kill. For all those they executed for deserting. No more “future soldiers” or sycophantic, slavish patriotism.  Let’s take the fight to the bosses! For disobedience and class war!



Luton Riots-
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luton_Town_Hall
http://libcom.org/history/1919-the-luton-riots
 

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