Ezker Marxista and El Militante organised a speaking tour last week throughout the Basque Country, with Gerry Rudy and Danny of the IRSP (Irish Republican Socialist Party) speaking in many Basque working class neighbourhoods, drawing the lessons of the experiences in Ireland and linking these to the struggle for national liberation of the Basque Country. The common thread was the need for the organised working class to take a lead in the struggle and link it to a socialist perspective.

In Southern Ireland, the economic miracle is well and truly over. As we have predicted and explained for some time now, the Celtic Tiger phenomenon, did not mean that capitalism had solved any of its contradictions. On the contrary the boom in the south was based on an increased intensification of the exploitation of labour through a series of so-called social partnership deals, and a heavy reliance on the world market. As the world market dips into recession and drags the southern economy along with it the bosses intend to turn the screw even tighter on the working class in an attempt to maintain their profits.

For the fourth time in its short existence the Northern Ireland Assembly has been suspended. On Monday October 14, the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, John Reid, announced that London was once again imposing direct rule. The whole process has been like a perverse game in which the workers hopes are constantly sent sliding backwards.

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