Campaigns: In the last 2 weeks we launched two new ones — in support of striking railway workers in Korea, and jailed oil workers in Kazakhstan. Both are exceptionally important — these are dramatic struggles where workers are up against the power of the state, and I hope everyone will do their bit to make these campaigns among our biggest ever. We’ll be launching a followup campaign next week for the Crown Holdings workers in Canada. I hope after that we’ll be able to take a short break before the new year — to catch our collective breath …
Mailing lists: Due to an extraordinary effort by the Korean teachers’ union to build support in the country for their campaign, we picked up several hundred Koreans for our mailing list. As a result, Korean has gone from being our 21st largest list to being the 11th largest, with 714 subscribers (this was just 173 a month ago).
Berlin 2014: Two weeks ago I reported that we had 128 people signed up for the conference; today that number is 197. The largest groups are from Germany (44), the UK (24), Pakistan (15), Liberia (12) and Nigeria (11). I’m still not certain that the comrades from Pakistan, Liberia and Nigeria and some other countries have fully understood that LabourStart is not covering airfares, although it’s possible that some of them will be in Berlin for the ITUC. The registration form is now available in Russian as well as English and German; we expect that a Dutch version is on the way. Tom and Edd developed a comprehensive strategy for promoting the conference to a UK audience, so we should see the size of the UK contingent grow. Meanwhile, I’ve focussed some attention on building participation from Finland, Denmark, Israel, the Czech Republic and Poland, with more countries coming soon.
Books: We’re about to begin work on book 4 — a collection of essays by former IUF General Secretary Dan Gallin. Sales of the earlier books and calendar remain sluggish.