25, 50 and 75 Years Ago

November 16, 2020

November 20, 1995

UNITED NATIONS — For the fourth year in a row, the Cuban government used the platform of the United Nations to blast Washington’s economic war and called for an end to the U.S. embargo of the island.

It presented a resolution titled “The Necessity of Ending the Economic, Commercial and Financial Blockade Imposed by the United States of America Against Cuba,” which passed 117 to 3 on November 2, with 38 abstentions.

The three previous resolutions called on member states to refrain from applying unilateral measures limiting free trade and navigation. Despite this, the new resolution stated, “new measures of this type continue being promulgated and applied.”

The Helms/Burton bill further tightening the embargo recently passed the U.S. Congress. It was condemned by representatives of several nations.

November 20, 1970

The starve-out strategy of Northwest Airlines against striking members of the Brotherhood of Railway and Airline Clerks resembles in some ways a miniature model of General Motors’ strategy against striking auto workers. The Northwest strike began July 8, four months ago. Company officials say flights are about 20 percent of the normal schedule. They have laid off an estimated 5,000 nonstriking workers.

The strikers — almost three-quarters of them women — are determined to win. A male clerk with 20 years at Northwest said, “If the job is necessary, and they must think it is, you should earn a living wage doing it.”

This airline strike, like the GM strike, involves an entire industry and can only be settled in the interest of the strikers when the unions move to an industry-wide shutdown instead of a partial or “selective” strike.

November 17, 1945

NEW YORK, Nov. 9 — Farrell Dobbs, mayoralty candidate of the Socialist Workers Party, gained 4,267 votes in the municipal election here November 6, a four hundred percent increase over the Trotskyist candidate in 1941. No count is as yet available for the votes of Louise Simpson, candidate for city council.

The Trotskyist candidates ran on a program of revolutionary socialism. Their main slogan was for independent working class political action and the formation by the labor movement of an independent labor party. The Trotskyist candidates declared their unconditional support of all militant strike struggles.

They called for government operation of idle plants under workers’ control, the 30-hour week with no reduction in pay, as well as government projects, including low-rent housing, to meet the problem of unemployment.