Since being crowned Tory Prime Minister – the third in seven weeks – Rishi Sunak has come under praise from the capitalist media for the ‘progressive milestone’ of the first Prime Minister of Asian descent.
Here, elected Seattle socialist councilmember and International Socialist Alternative member in the US Kshama Sawant comments on why those who want to struggle against racism should not celebrate Sunak’s coming to power. Kshama explains how Sunak is not a progressive – he is a representative of a system based on racism and division in its DNA. Instead, we need to point to mass struggle to fight for an end to racist oppression and exploitation of working class people. That means forcing ALL the Tories out!
“As a South Asian American socialist, I really agree with those who say that celebrating Sunak for his South Asian ethnicity is akin to praising Margaret Thatcher for having been a woman Prime Minister. Just like Thatcher was, Sunak is a ruthless representative of the billionaire class, not of working women, people of color, or immigrants.
With a net worth over £730 million, Sunak is extremely wealthy. His wife, Akshata Murty, is the daughter of an Indian billionaire. Sunak was revealed, only a few months ago, to have used his wife’s non-domicile tax status to avoid up to £20 million in taxes.
The Tories are in deep crisis. And their whole agenda is to try and inflict all the misery of the recession on working people.
Socialist Alternative fully supports this government being brought down immediately and a general election being called. The British working class and labor movement need to continue to escalate and broaden the ongoing strike wave. This should include building for the November 5 People’s Assembly demonstration in London as a mass show of force against the Tories, to demand a general election, and to begin preparing for a general strike to force the crumbling Tories from power.
But we should also honestly clarify that Keir Starmer’s Blairite Labour Party has spent almost 2 years trying to win over the ruling class to its side as a safe — indeed a safer pair of hands — for capitalism than the Tories.
While struggling to force the Tories out, the working class needs to be on the offensive to force the change we need even under a Labour government in Britain. This should include building a new left party of struggle that can give a political expression to the movements of workers, young people, women, refugees and all those looking to fight back.”