This is not the blog I intended writing this week, there’s been just too much happening that I need to touch on before I get to what I wanted to say.
In South Dakota the Lakota Peoples Law Project (of which I am a member) are commemorating the 50th anniversary of the occupation of Wounded Knee by the American Indian Movement, which commenced 28 February 1973 and lasted for two months. I began writing a blog about the event a year ago and intend to complete it this week.
Wounded Knee 73 50th Anniversary https://www.lakotatimes.com/articles/wounded-knee-73-50th-anniversary/
Elsewhere in America neo-Nazis planned a Day of Hate directed against Jews and in the U.K. the Patriotic Alternative are targeting hotels accommodating asylum seekers. From what I’ve heard so far, anti-fascists are likely to turn out in even greater numbers so there is hope that violence can be avoided.
Two weeks ago I wrote about the No2NATO conference that was planned to take place at the Conway Hall. It was the second venue to cancel the booking due to threats of violence, but it went ahead anyway. Here’s a conversation between two of the participants, Chris Williamson and Lowkey.
Lowkey and Chris Williamson Discuss The No2Nato Campaign https://youtu.be/dQn0l9ULlxQ
Elsewhere in London, and across the U.K., Stop the War Coalition were holding even larger rallies to mark the first anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. We’re all saying the same thing, opposing NATO is is not supporting Russia but recognising that prolonging this proxy war means greater suffering for civilians everywhere. But hey! There’s nowt like a war to distract from the cost of living crisis at home 🙄
Another rally was by We Own It in protest about the unnecessary deaths caused by privatisation of the NHS. It’s a cause dear to the heart of Harry Leslie Smith, the Oldest Rebel, and I had informed them that it 25 February was Harry’s 100th birthday – which is what I really wanted to talk about.
With so much going on it’s hardly surprising that Harry’s birthday should pass unnoticed by many, especially the current leadership of the Labour Party who seek to distance themselves from everything he stood for. Once a hero, Harry is largely forgotten by those who now dominate the political discourse – possibly even by many socialists who privately admire his work.
I’ve been working with his son John to keep Harry’s memory alive, but John hasn’t had any success in getting anyone with influence to put on an event of any description and I’ve been of less help than I would’ve liked 🙁 I did however commemorate the occasion in my own way by reposting a lot of John’s blogs and some new ones, they were well received by my followers which shows how much Harry is still loved 😊 Here’s John’s latest blog:
Happy Hundredth Birthday Dad – It was the journey not the arrival that mattered. https://open.substack.com/pub/jmsmith/p/happy-hundredth-birthday-dad-it-was?utm_campaign=post&utm_medium=web
John’s own book I Stood With Harry is still to find a publisher, but you can get an online copy:
1. Take out a paid subscription to Harry’s Last Stand Newsletter, there’s a link at the end of John’s blog. £3.50 per month!
2. Send a DM to @HarrysLastStand
There is no better way to honour Harry Leslie Smith than to help his son to continue his work, especially considering John’s own health. Having been finally cleared of rectal cancer he’s now been diagnosed with the same disease that killed his father and brother! But he’s inherited Harry’s fighting spirit and will rage against the dying of the light