Letter to Workers Vanguard

20 October 2001

To the Editor

In the 12 October issue of Workers Vanguard it is alleged that IBT comrades in Toronto have been pressing Trotskyist League youth "to agree that all those killed in the attack on the Pentagon 'deserved to die.'" This is absolutely untrue. We categorically deny making such a statement at any time in Toronto or anywhere else. We are flatly opposed to such views as our 18 September statement makes clear.

On 28 September I had a conversation with a young TLer in front of the building at the University of Toronto where Tariq Ali was speaking. During this discussion the question of the omission of the Pentagon bombing from your initial statement came up, along with the question of Lebanon 1983 and other issues. On 19 October, after reading your erroneous account, I met this same comrade at a public meeting on "globalization" at the UofT and asked him if he had been the source of this misinformation. He agreed that I had made no such statement, nor did he know of any other IBT comrade making such a statement. He furthermore denied being the source of the false attribution.

In a subsequent discussion with Comrade Charles I pointed out that in the present political climate the consequences of such falsehoods could potentially be extremely serious. I told him that I was raising this with him, as a leading member of the TL, on behalf of the IBT. He indicated that he was not the source of the quotation. He also advised me that Workers Vanguard has a policy of correcting "factual errors" and suggested that I write to you on this matter.

We look forward to an appropriate correction in the 26 October issue of WV.

Bolshevik Greetings,
Tom Riley