Strike Report: Israel

Israeli workers have organized a walkout in what appears to be the largest strike action in half a decade. You can find a report from The New York Times here. As the article explains, this is centrally (and defensibly, though The Times would never say it, of course) a question of defending union jobs. The complexity of the situation, which involves the state using lower-paid contractual labor – including security guards (!) – as a union-busting measure on behalf of the bosses, demands that union workers raise two slogans to their defense: Organize the Unorganized & No Cops or Guards in the Union.

The central dispute is the growing use by government agencies of contract workers, especially cleaners and security guards, hired through employment agencies. Those workers earn substantially less than those represented by the Histadrut.

Strike Report: Greece

From The New York Times: Greek Workers Strike Against New Round of Austerity

With ever-increasing intensity, Greek workers are asked to pay more while earning less. Meanwhile, the bosses continue to use the threat of “a potentially catastrophic default” as their sword of Damocles against a workforce that already faces a staggering unemployment rate of 19%. The union rank and file know the score: they are presently living the catastrophe of austerity and refuse to take it on the chin any longer.