25, 50 and 75 Years Ago

February 17, 2020

February 20, 1995

Nearly 50 years ago Washington ushered in the horror of nuclear warfare with the slaughter of some 200,000 men, women and children in the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

“The Japanese were ready to surrender and it wasn’t necessary to hit them with that awful thing.” Those words of former Republican President Dwight Eisenhower were among the first stricken from the Smithsonian Institution display on the August 1945 bombings. No facts were to be tolerated that might challenge Washington’s lie that the bombings saved the lives of hundreds of thousands of U.S. soldiers.

The truth is that the bombings were aimed at upholding U.S. capitalist interests at the expense of workers and farmers the world over — not “saving lives,” either U.S. or Japanese.

February 20, 1970

The longest strike in General Motors history was settled Jan. 22 in what appears to be a victory for the striking 2,700 UAW members at the GM Fisher Body plant in Flint, Mich.

The agreement which ended the strike provides for 43.5 bodies per hour instead of the 55 units the company originally demanded.

The settlement came immediately after the UAW head office called for a regional conference to consider ways of giving further support to the strike since the issues have national implications for the upcoming negotiations with the entire auto industry.

We can only wait and see just how much the Flint workers actually have won. For sure, they taught GM management that arbitrary speedup brings countermeasures.

February 17, 1945

LOS ANGELES, Feb. 8 — “Building a labor party is the essential next step for the labor movement if it is to stem successfully the wave of reaction in the period ahead,” Myra Tanner Weiss, Trotskyist candidate for mayor of Los Angeles, told the United AFL Interviewing Committee representing 500,000 AFL members in Los Angeles County.

Asked whether she would withdraw from the race and throw her support to the labor-endorsed candidate if she is not endorsed, the Trotskyist candidate stated, “If the labor movement puts forth an independent labor ticket, we would certainly withdraw and support such candidates vigorously. But we definitely would not support a Democrat or Republican candidate. Both of these parties are employers’ organizations.”