Tag Archives: World War I

Coronavirus and the sun: a lesson from the 1918 influenza pandemic

Fresh air, sunlight and improvised face masks seemed to work a century ago; and they might help us now.

Influenza patients getting sunlight at the Camp Brooks emergency open-air hospital in Boston. Medical staff were not supposed to remove their masks | National Archives

By Richard Hobday*

(March 10) – When new, virulent diseases emerge, such SARS and Covid-19, the race begins to find new vaccines and treatments for those affected. As the current crisis unfolds, governments are enforcing quarantine and isolation, and public gatherings are being discouraged. Health officials took the same approach 100 years ago, when influenza was spreading around the world. The results were mixed. But records from the 1918 pandemic suggest one technique for dealing with influenza — little-known today — was effective. Some hard-won experience from the greatest pandemic in recorded history could help us in the weeks and months ahead. Continue reading

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102nd Anniversary of the Halifax Explosion

 

Infamy of the massacre of the Canadian people in Halifax

Painting of the Halifax Explosion

By TONY SEED

December 6th is the 102nd anniversary of the horrific Halifax Explosion of 1917 – the largest explosion in history before the infamous devastation of Hiroshima and Nagasaki by U.S. atomic bombs in 1945.[1] Some 1,963 innocent men, women and children were massacred, another 9,000 injured and 199 blinded, comprising more than one fifth of the total population, resulting from a massive explosion due to the collision in the inner harbour of the merchant ship Imo and the ammunition ship Mont Blanc loaded with 3,00 tons of chemical explosives. One square mile of the working class quarter of the North End facing the Halifax Narrows was totally destroyed. Six thousand people lost their homes altogether and between 20,000 and 25,000 Haligonians were left homeless and destitute, including ten thousand children. More than 1,600 buildings were destroyed, and 12,000 more were damaged.[2] Continue reading

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This Day. 100th Anniversary of the Winnipeg General Strike

Canadian workers’ proud history of organized resistance and defence of rights

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Rally June 4, 1919, outside the building which housed the citizen’s committee.

This year marks the 100th Anniversary of the Winnipeg General Strike. On May First 1919, discouraged by post-war inflation and unemployment, Winnipeg’s metal and building workers went on strike, demanding higher wages. Winnipeg’s building trade workers walked out to gain better wages and hours. They were joined by iron workers who were fighting for company recognition of their union, the Metal Trades Council. On May 15, with the overwhelming support of its 12,000 members, the Winnipeg Labour Council called a general strike. Thirty thousand union and non-union people walked off the job. Among the first out were the city’s telephone workers. Winnipeg had no phone service for a week.  Continue reading

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100th Anniversary of the Battle of George Square

1919.01.31.Crowd red flag

Battle of George Square, Glasgow

The “Battle of George Square” was a confrontation in Glasgow, in which the Glasgow City Police sought to violently suppress striking Glasgow workers, centred around George Square. The confrontation, also known as “Bloody Friday”, took place on Friday, January 31, 1919, 82 days after the end of the First World War. Continue reading

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Poems on the Occasion of the Centenary of the End of World War I – Moments of Quiet Reflection

Monuments in Saskatchewan (left) and Alberta to the people unjustly interned by the Canadian government during World War One, reminders of the repression at home that accompanies imperialist war abroad. 

Today we will hear a lot about Remembrance Day and what to remember on Remembrance Day. For instance, we are told that Canada’s Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, will be in Paris, France for a special 100th anniversary Armistice Day service followed by a “Peace Forum.” British Prime Minister Teresa May, Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel, U.S. President Donald Trump and “more than 70 other world leaders” are also invited. The “Peace Forum” will discuss “issues of international security.” Continue reading

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Contributions and Slaughter of Colonial Peoples in World War I

On the occasion of the centenary of the end of World War I, TML Weekly has been producing an excellent series of informative Supplements on the war and related matters of concern. This is the fourth in the series. Click for No. 1 (How the First World War Out); No. 2 (Canada and the First World War); No. 3 (British Movement of Conscientious Objectors); No. 4 (Contributions and Slaughter of Colonial Peoples in World War I);  No. 5 (Steadfast Opposition to the Betrayal of the Workers’ Movement); No. 6 (Poems on the Occasion of the Centenary of the End of World War I – Moments of Quiet Reflection.

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Members of Chinese Labour Corps at William Head, outside Victoria, BC, awaiting transport by train across Canada and then by ship to Europe.

• Colonial Peoples’ Resistance in World War One
• Massive Conscription of Indians by the British
• Chinese Labour Corps and Other Non-Combatant Workers from the Colonies Continue reading

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Centenary of the End of World War I: British Movement of Conscientious Objectors

On the occasion of the centenary of the end of World War I, TML Weekly has been producing an excellent series of informative Supplements on the war and related matters of concern. This is the third in the series. Click for No. 1 (How the First World War Out); No. 2 (Canada and the First World War); No. 3 (British Movement of Conscientious Objectors); No. 4 (Contributions and Slaughter of Colonial Peoples in World War I);  No. 5 (Steadfast Opposition to the Betrayal of the Workers’ Movement); No. 6 (Poems on the Occasion of the Centenary of the End of World War I – Moments of Quiet Reflection.

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Dyce Work Camp was set up in August 1916 at quarries north-west of Aberdeen, Scotland. Conscientious Objectors had been released from prison on condition that they performed “work of national importance” – breaking up granite rock for road building.

• The Men Who Said No
• Opposition in Britain to the War and Criminalization of Conscience
• Organizing to Oppose Conscription and Defend Conscientious Objectors
• Civil Service and Non-Combat Roles in the Military for Objectors
• Imprisonment Continue reading

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