Why does Scotland have two socialist parties?

[Tuesday]

A rhetorical question, please note. But compare and contrast the following:

Solidarity Statement on Glasgow Airport Attack

Sunday, 01 July 2007

Solidarity condemns unreservedly the attack which took place at Glasgow Airport yesterday. If successful it would have resulted in the mass murder of innocent civilians of every background, ethnicity and religion, including children. It follows recent events in London, again with the intention of causing maximum carnage, and we join all right thinking people in condemning any and all such indiscriminate attacks.

However, we remain in no doubt that at the root of such attacks is the government’s culpability in the ongoing carnage and slaughter which is now part of daily life on the streets of Iraq, Afghanistan and Palestine. Last week, Tony Blair left office accompanied by a standing ovation in the House of Commons, only to leave Downing Street with his family a few hours later accompanied by jeers of “murderer” and “war criminal” from antiwar protesters. It was a contrast which served to underline the extent of the disconnect which now exists in British society -between a government and a parliament and the vast majority of people over which it governs.

Pat Smith stood as a Solidarity candidate in the Scottish elections and is on the national steering committee of the Stop The War Coalition. She said: “Blair and Brown have only succeeded in helping to make the world a much more dangerous place with their support for the illegal US invasion and occupation of Iraq. Iraq is in flames, in Afghanistan civilians are being killed on a daily basis, yet at home the vast majority of people are against the war, including the troops. It is time to bring them out.”

Solidarity Co-Convenor, Tommy Sheridan, said: “Newly appointed Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, has warned the public to be vigilant as there could be more attacks. Our message to him is that there will inevitably be more attacks as long as British troops are engaged in the Middle East and as long as he remains committed to US foreign policy and strategic objectives around the world.”

Solidarity Glasgow Councillor, Ruth Black, said: “This incident has really brought home the enormity of the polarisation and extremism which exists both at home and abroad as a direct result of this New Labour government’s policies in the Middle East. It was random and indiscriminate and I would make a plea for calm in the days and weeks ahead.”

This attack will no doubt be taken as a green light by racists and fascists, such as the BNP, to push their agenda of hate and division across Scotland. Let them be in no doubt, however, that Solidarity will continue to stand shoulder to shoulder with the Muslim community, immigrants and asylum seekers come what may. They are not the enemy of working class people. The true enemy of all working class people are the millionaires, the corporations and a government that governs on their behalf.

*

SSP statement on attack on Glasgow airport

Scottish Socialist Party Executive Committe

1.7.07

The Scottish Socialist Party offers its support and sympathy to Scotland’s Muslim community in the wake of Saturday’s attempted atrocity at Glasgow Airport.

As the Muslim Association of Britain has pointed out, Scotland’s Muslim community are justifiably angry at this attempted atrocity, which has the potential to play into the hands of the racist far-right, damage community relations and heighten fears in the Muslim community.

Saturday’s action is the first serious attempt in Scotland to conduct a terrorist campaign aimed at civilians since Word War II. With Gordon Brown taking the reigns of power in Westminster, Scotland has apparently become a legitimate terrorist target, as a result of the government’s disastrous and murderous wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

From the needless murder of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi and Afghan civilians to young men from Fife meeting a premature and futile end in Basra, families around the world are in mourning as a result of Bush, Blair and now Brown’s warmongering.

In opposition, the SNP were vocal in their opposition to the war and their desire to bring the troops home. The SSP calls on Scotland’s politicians from all parties, whether they supported the war in Iraq or not, to end this mess and to end it now.

An independent Scotland would not have been dragged into an illegal war against the wishes of a majority of the people; the decision to bring the troops home is ours, not Mr Brown’s.

We call for the whole of Scotland to rally to the anti-war cause and to resist attempts to divide us on race or religion. Scotland’s Muslim community is not responsible for these attacks and should not be allowed to be scapegoated by the press or the politicians. Acts of terrorism target the innocent; we condemn such attacks wherever they occur.

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