Red Reading - Spectre takes a look at the latest from the radical press and left publishers

EU Constitution/Lisbon Treaty: What part of ‘no’ don’t they understand?
asks Serge Halimiin in Le Monde Diplomatique

"Some of the 27 member states of the European Union may soon find themselves subject to institutions their people have rejected: 1 January 2009 is the final date for ratification of the Lisbon Treaty, signed by the heads of state and government in December 2007 and already ratified by Hungary, Malta, Slovenia, Romania and France.

"Nicolas Sarkozy once said that no true European and responsible politician could carry on as if nothing had happened after the French said no to the European constitution, that it was a message from the French people and must be heeded. But that was back in June 2006. Once he was president, he felt entitled to disregard this expression of the people’s will. He has just persuaded more than 75% of French MPs to adopt a treaty that is almost identical to the Constitutional Treaty that 54.68% of French voters rejected on 29 May 2005. The Socialist Party could have demanded another referendum; it had undertaken to do so, but abandoned the idea." Read the rest

Take a look at the rest of the site while you're there. This fine, radical French monthly is now available in English translation, in its entirety, via the Internet for only £19/€26/$36 (Although this might have risen to $1,527.26, or a wheelbarrow full of share certificates, by the time you read this – Sorry, we know, we know, it's not funny...)

EU/Israel-Palestine: How the EU helps Israel to strangle Gaza

Did you know the EU shares direct responsibility for the terrible suffering in Gaza? No fancy economics involved, just a bit of mutual backscratching between Brussels and Tel Aviv:

"But how can Israel strangle Gaza when there is supposed to be an international crossing between Gaza and Egypt, a crossing which is not controlled by Israelis?

"Certainly, that was the promise held out in the comprehensive Agreement on Movement and Access (AMA), signed more than two years ago, on 15 November 2005, by Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA). The first of the six components of this Agreement was that there would be a crossing between Gaza and Egypt at Rafah, controlled by the PA and Egypt, on terms set out in the Agreed Principles for Rafah Crossing Point (APRC) that formed part of the Agreement. At the time, this was hailed as an historic step on the road to a Palestinian state – for the first time, it was said, Palestinians would have access to the outside world free from Israeli control.

"How come then that Israel is still able to strangle Gaza? The answer is that, thanks to the good offices of the EU, which has a role in managing the Rafah crossing under the Agreement, Israel has always had a veto on the opening of the crossing. As we will see, in practice, whenever Israel doesn’t want the crossing open, the EU doesn’t open it." Read the rest of David Morrison's disturbing article .


Take Three - SchMovies Collection DVD 2007

This is the third collection of short films from Brighton (England) -based Schnews, a useful and entertaining newsletter run by anarchists. SchMovies DVD collection features short direct action films produced by SchMOVIES in 2007, covering Hill Of Tara Protests, Smash EDO, Naked Bike Ride, The No Borders Camp at Gatwick, Class War and many others. Attempts to suppress the latest SchMovies film 'On the Verge' which deals with the activities of merchants of death EDO, oiffer further disturbing evidence that dissent is no longer an acceptable phenomenon in 21st Century Britian. You can find more out at the SchMovies website

Stop the War

Thousands of people in towns and cities all over the world marched last week on the fifth anniversary of Bush and Blair's illegal invasion of Iraq to protest against the war that followed. In San Francisco, David Bacon was on hand to take these inspiring photographs