Britain: Black Lives Matter Demonstrations sweep through all major British Cities

Demand Justice for George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and all other victims of Racism and Police Repression! Support the movement with organizing of strike action up to a political general strike in solidarity with the international BLM movement!


Article by Joseph Adams, RCIT Britian, 22 June 2020,



For the last two or three weeks there have been demonstrations and protests in response to the brutal police murder of George Floyd by the Minneapolis police in the United States in all the major cities and towns in Britain including London, Manchester, Birmingham, Sheffield and Newcastle. These demonstrations have been spontaneous and showed the pent up anger against police brutality, unemployment, austerity and the killing and indiscriminate brutality against people of Afro-Caribbean descent. In Britain the same brutality has been meted out to people of colour as well.


“Shayla Avery texted a friend after the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis, nearly 2,000 miles away in Berkeley, California. “We should do something,” wrote the 16-year-old high school student, frustrated that her teachers were not talking about it. So they started planning and a few days later, Avery, together with two school friends, had organized her first protest.” [1]


The involvement of young people has been an inspiration to many others to join these protests which at the height of the Pandemic of Covid-19 have broken the lockdown although respecting social distancing and wearing masks and using sanitizers. This tremendous leap in revolutionary consciousness has completely eclipsed the Lockdown-Left of Labour Party Mayors in London like Sadiq Khan and Andy Burnham in Manchester. Both Khan and Burnham slavishly supporting the lockdown even denounced the demonstrations. Keith Starmer, the Blairite Leader of the Labour party also denounced violent attacks on the Police, demonstrating again his commitment to the bourgeois state. He also opposed any breach of the lockdown. Both the Labour Party leadership and the trade union bureaucracy have completely capitulated to the lockdown which is a clear attack on democratic rights and a move towards Bonapartism. These social-democrats as well as the opportunists in nearly all centrist groups have gone along with these attacks like sheeps to the slaughter.


The Black Lives Matter movement and the protesting youth have now ignored these “rules” and sparked a revolutionary charge against the state attacks and brute force by the police.


The backward sections and lumpen elements associated with the fascist movement of Tommy Robinson’s English Defense League and Britain First have deliberately organized counter demonstrations and provocations, attacking the BLM protests. They are defacto at the behest of the capitalist state in order to get these demonstrations and marches banned.


“Priti Patel has been urged to impose an emergency ban on all protests after Britain’s biggest police force condemned the “mindless hooliganism” and “utterly shocking” violence of far-right activists against its officers in London.


The head of the body representing rank-and-file police officers in England and Wales called for tougher restrictions on demonstrations after 23 officers were injured and more than 100 people were arrested during clashes in London on Saturday. The Metropolitan police said officers had been injured after being kicked, punched or hit by missiles as they faced hundreds of angry demonstrators who claimed that they were protecting statues in central London on Saturday.


Police said 113 people were arrested, including a 28-year-old man detained on suspicion of urinating by a Westminster memorial dedicated to the murdered police officer Keith Palmer.


Bas Javid, a commander at the Met, said: “The scenes officers encountered across central London yesterday were utterly shocking. Once again they were pelted with missiles, or challenged by groups of men intent on violence”. [2]


Statue of Slave Trader Edward Colston pulled down and thrown into the River


The Black Lives matter protests have acquired a more important development and that is to campaign against the remnans of slavery. Many towns and cities have statues of important historical figures who have been slave owners respectively traders. The masses in Britain have learnt an important lesson which bourgeois academics and historians reject and that is that most of these so-called historical figures were leading proponents of imperialism, colonialism and slavery during the period of the British Empire and should never be looked at as heros but rather as the oppressors they were. In London, Winston Churchill (much beloved worthy of Boris Johnson) was a leading imperialist politician who used the army and the police against strikers and workers during the early 20th Century when he was Home Secretary. His history is littered with attacks on the working class and he remained an imperialist and racist until his death. No wonder that Winston Churchill’s statue was daubed with the words racist on it. When the fascists responded, they claimed that they act patriotic which is true to the sense that British history and present is imperialist. In fact most fascist groups emerged from proto-fascist groups formed during and after the Second World War but have a specific element today which is the neglect of Hitler fascism and the cultivation of British fascism with a focus on Islamophobia.


“The statue of Edward Colston, originally erected in The Centre in Bristol England, is of Bristol-born merchant Edward Colston (1636–1721) whose earlier reputation as a philanthropist has come under increasing scrutiny because of his involvement in the Atlantic slave trade The bronze statue, created in 1895 by sculptor John Cassidy, on a Portland stone plinth, was designated a Grade II listed structure in 1977.


On 7 June 2020, the statue of Colston was toppled, defaced, and pushed into Bristol Harbour by Black Lives Matter protesters during the George Floyd protests. The plinth was also covered in graffiti.”[3]


Winston Churchill as Home Secretary in the Early Part of the 20th Century


Here are two excerpts showing Churchill as a major imperialist politician demonstrating his actions against the working class. “Back in Britain (Churchill) , he was tasked with dealing with the Tonypandy Riot in which coal miners in the Rhondda Valley violently protested against their working conditions The Chief Constable of Glamorgan requested troops to help police quell the rioting. Churchill, learning that the troops were already travelling, allowed them to go as far as Swindon and Cardiff, but blocked their deployment; he was concerned that the use of troops could lead to bloodshed. Instead he sent 270 London police—who were not equipped with firearms—to assist their Welsh counterparts As the riots continued, he offered the protesters an interview with the government's chief industrial arbitrator, which they accepted Churchill became involved with the Siege of Sidney Street three Latvian burglars had killed several police officers and hidden in a house in London's East End which was surrounded by police Churchill joined the police although did not direct their operation. After the house caught on fire, he told the fire brigade not to proceed into the house because of the threat that the armed Latvians posed to them. After the event, two of the burglars were found dead. Although he faced criticism for his decision, he stated that he "thought it better to let the house burn down rather than spend good British lives in rescuing those ferocious rascals" [4]


Demonstrating against the existence of Britain’s colonial and imperial past there have been campaigns in social media against well-known racist and imperialist exploiters respectively slave owners and traders. One such campaign was successful at Oriel College Oxford where there is a statue of Cecil Rhodes, the racist in Africa who propagated imperialist rule in Southern Africa. After facing enormous pressure, the senate decided to have the statue taken down and removed.


Recently, a lawyer working for the Crown Prosecution Service has tweeted support for a Britain First tweet calling for Nelson Mandela’s statue to be pulled down as a known terrorist. This is a provocation against people of colour and particular Afro-Caribbean’s and it shows the collusion of the state with fascist ideology. It also proves again that more people of Afro-Caribbean descent are likely to be prosecuted than white people in a system where lawyers in the highest state structures sympathize with positions of fascist groups.


“A senior lawyer at the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) is under investigation after a petition from far-right group Britain First calling for the statue of Nelson Mandela to be “torn down” was posted on her Facebook page. The petition was shared on the Facebook page of Kim Kendall, a senior lawyer at the Yorkshire and Humberside CPS. It accuses Mandela of being “a communist and terrorist mass murderer” who should be “consigned to the dustbin of history”. CPS employees are civil servants and required to be impartial, particularly when making decisions about whether individual cases should proceed to court or not.


Kendall’s investigation by her employers follows complaints by at least two lawyers who were concerned about the material on her Facebook page” [5].


RCIT Programme and Perspectives for the Coming Period


The RCIT in past articles has identified COVID-19 and the Pandemic coupled with the lockdown as further evidence of a counter-revolutionary attack against the masses and the working class. Together with the deep recession, the years of austerity, exploitation and poverty for the masses this was an opportunity for the ruling class to take preventive steps against potential resistance in future. However, the killing of George Floyd combined with the looming frustration of the poor masses in this deep capitalist crisis have unleashed all the anger leading to major class battles in the imperialist heartlands of Britain and the USA.


“However, the decisive breakthrough has been the unprecedented mass protests in the U.S. – the heart of the imperialist beast – after the cold-blood murder of George Floyd by the police. Since the end of May, a pre-revolutionary situation has opened up in the most powerful capitalist state which is now politically paralyzed by the largest popular uprising this country has ever seen since the civil war in 1861-65 and, more recently, the black power mobilizations in the 1960s. This has provoked an international wave of mass demonstrations against racism and police violence with hundreds of thousands people on the streets in several countries of Western Europe, While the concrete issues of protest differ, in most cases they share a general theme: the rage against racism and police violence, the exploitation and humiliation of the poor and oppressed by authoritarian regimes. In other words, the democratic question is in the forefront of the mass struggles. This confirms the RCIT’s thesis of the central importance of the revolutionary democratic struggle in the current period as we outlined in our program adopted in 2016 and re-emphasized in our analysis of the current global counter-revolutionary offensive under the cover of the COVID-19 pandemic” [6].


The RCIT in BRITAIN puts forward the following transitional demands in this current period in order to unite the working classes and the masses under a revolutionary banner.


* For a continuation of the Social Protests! No to the Lockdowns! Defend the right to demonstrate and assemble!


* No to Surveillance! Stop the Police State!


* Defend all Communities from Fascist Provocations and Police Attacks! Organize armed Self-defense guards of workers and oppressed to protect our communities! All police officers involved in brutalities against Afro-Caribbean people must be sacked immediately and imprisoned! However, the ultimate goal is to smash the police which is nothing else than an instrument against our class!


* Support the Black Lives Matter movement and fight for a revolutionary orientation of the movement! The goal must be to forge an international Revolutionary Black Movement which dedicates itself to smash the capitalist system together with other revolutionary movements of the workers and oppressed!


* No sackings of workers! No wage cuts! For a strike movement up to an indefinite general strike to remove the hated and reactionary Boris Johnson Government!


* For the building of a new Workers Party!


* Fight for a Workers Government to be established through an armed uprising!


Join the RCIT and fight with us for a new, a 5th International - a world party of the workers and oppressed!