Monday, 28 January 2013

Letter to the SWP

 A letter from sympathetic socialists, who have a history of working with the party, addresses the crisis:

The ongoing crisis in the Socialist Workers’ Party – precipitated by the handling of rape allegations against a senior party member – has raised fundamental questions about democracy, power and sexism in the organisations and culture of the left. We believe that the way in which the central committee of the SWP has handled the situation, and its lack of a reasonable response to the legitimate protests voiced by many of its own members, as well as others on the left, point to issues that cannot simply be swept under the rug.

We have all previously participated in events and initiatives promoted by the SWP, including the annual Marxism festival, or written for its publications. We continue to value the commitment and work of many SWP members as trades unionists, activists and comrades. Nonetheless, we can no longer in good conscience participate in SWP publications and platforms until the party recognises and seriously addresses the legitimate criticisms of its handling of this case and the ensuing crisis.

Greg Albo, Abbie Bakan, Jairus Banaji, Gail Day, Steve Edwards, Nadine El-Enany, Phil Gasper, Peter Hallward, Adam Hanieh, Owen Hatherley, Paul Kellogg, Brian Kelly, Conor Kostick, Robert Knox, Thomas Marois, David McNally, Adam Morton, James Murphy, Kevin Murphy, Ilan Pappé, Charles Post, Nina Power, Gregory Schwartz, Peter Thomas, Alberto Toscano, Thomas Walpole, Jeffery Webber, Rafeef Ziadah


  1. Alex Callinicos has written an article in Socialist Review about the crisis: it's called 'is Leninism finished?'

    There is much analysis inside it with which we would agree: We don't agree with reformism; very good. We don't agree with Counterfire; very good.

    But what you will not find here, what Callinicos does not address, is the heart of the argument: the total mishandling of rape allegations against a leading comrade.

    He evades the core issue not because of sensitivity for the accuser, but because he cannot defend a hearing so biased in favour of the accused.

    His article is therefore cowardly.

    The members of the SWP raising this issue are not anti-Leninist. But they are militantly anti-sexist. The same will not be said of our party unless it can learn from and acknowledge this terrible error.

  2. LOL - political correctness run rampant by the cultural left now bites the older historical determinism Leninists.

    The cultural left will win this battle, due to sheer numbers. That will be the end of SWP -- never too soon.