Time to Change

Editorial of Liberation Journal Summer 2023

This issue of our journal marks the 75th anniversary of the arrival of the Empire Windrush and all subsequent injustice. It also calls for a radical change in Britain’s foreign policy as war poses a very real existential threat to the world and all its peoples.

As Britain recovered from World War 2, it was burdened with massive financial debt to the United States. Simultaneously, there was a huge labour shortage. On 22nd June 1948, the Empire Windrush, arrived with 802 volunteer workers from Caribbean countries. They went on to make a vital contribution to post-war reconstruction and included many with skills which were desperately needed.

Recently, the rights of the Windrush generation, and its massive contribution, have been denied by the current government, a policy facilitated by the creation of a hostile environment for today’s refugees and asylum seekers. In this atmosphere even the rights of the Windrush generation and their descendants to continue to live and work in Britain were questioned, despite their constitutional entitlement to do so. 
Liberation condemns the government’s treatment of the Windrush workers and their families and its failure to address the great injustice it has committed.

The world is once again seeing great changes as new international alignments emerge in Asia, the Far East, and Latin America, pushing US and British hegemony into further decline. As members of the BRICS coalition move rapidly to develop foreign policy and definitions of international relations based on mutual respect and independence, the imperialist powers are doing everything possible to preserve their global position by any means at their disposal.

This is the context in which the recent meeting of Rishi Sunak with US President Biden must be seen, with Britain once again hanging on the coattails of the US. The Atlantic Declaration which emerged, deliberately mirrored the Churchill/Roosevelt 1941 pact. It does little for trading relations between Britain and the US, being solely confined to the deepening of military alignment between the two powers.  Nothing in it is in the interests of either British or American workers and their families. Rather it represents a further step in war preparations and a boost to the profit-hungry military/industrial complexes.

However, what the people of Britain need more than anything is economic cooperation, and above all, peace to help overcome the country’s economic and social crisis and halt the potential of global conflict and nuclear catastrophe. To move in this direction, is impossible without a new non-aligned foreign policy to replace Global Britain. Britain in NATO, tied to US global ambitions (and weaponised desperation), remains disastrous.

The key role of the US and Britain in keeping the war in Ukraine going with the endless supplies of weapons and cash deliberately fuels escalation and with it the possibility of global war. This is underlined by the refusal of the US and British governments and Ukrainian Nationalists to support China’s call for an immediate ceasefire and peace talks.

Nonalignment, and an end to the war, offers not only the economic dividend of peace but also the very real opportunity of transforming Britain’s international role to one that builds mutual prosperity through trade and cooperation.

The persecution of refugees and continuing loss of migrant lives, as well as Britain’s interference in countries around the world, including in Sudan, are all evidence of a reactionary position set against independence, democracy and the self-determination. So too is Britain’s refusal to return its last colony in Africa, the occupied Chagos Islands (including Diego Garcia) to Mauritius.

It’s time for a new foreign policy! It’s time for non-alignment!

Jamshid Ahmadi – Editor

Liberation Journal is available as a download on our website. Liberation members received a hard copy in the post.

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