All 3,700 electors have now received the election address of the communist party candidate standing in Barnstaple Central ward.

Gerrard Sables is standing for the Communist Party in the Barnstaple Central ward in both the Barnstaple Town Council and North Devon District Council elections on 5th May. Voters will have five votes for the Town Council and two for District. These will be the ninth and tenth elections he will have fought as a communist; the first was back in 1979.

Following on from a town council bye-election in the same ward last July where he got 6% of the vote in a fight with Libdem and Tory candidates for one seat Gerrard is hopeful of a higher vote. In the District Council there are two Tory, two Libdem, one Labour and one Communist. Labour has not stood in this ward since at least 1995 and the candidate last stood where he lived in Braunton. He has not replied to a letter asking why the communist should ask voters to put an X against his name as well as the communist's.

The Town Council election is more interesting. The local Libdems seem to have a personal dislike of the incumbent Tory. The Libdems have four candidates. The Tories have the one. Then there is Gerrard Sables. The Libdems are sure to get three candidates through but they want all four and they don't want the Tory. It is understood that at least three of the Libdem candidates are asking their supporters to give the fifth vote to the communist. The coalition is not operating at local level.

Each voter has also recieved a copy of the People's Charter.
 

On the 8th of May 1945 Europe was freed from the tyrannies of Nazi and fascist rule.

The sacrifices made by the allied powers were enormous. More accurately, the sacrifice of ordinary men and women in laying down their lives to defeat a far right ideology was enormous.

The latest estimates put total Soviet casualties at between 26 and 27 million dead - 10 million in battle or PoW camps and the rest, civilians. That amounts to around 15% of the population.

A further 25 million civilians were homeless or living in farm buildings.

To put that into perspective, the deaths of UK military personnel and civilians amounted to 0.9% of the total population.

Of the 5.7 million Soviet PoWs in Nazi custody, 57% died. This compares with British and US death rates of 3.6%.

We must never forget that among the first targets of Hitler's concentration camps were German Communists. Following the burning of the Reichstag thousands of members of the Communist Party of Germany were arrested, wiping out opposition to the Nazi party.

Communists and working people around the world must not allow VE Day to be turned into a celebration of the pomp of the elite, of the "superiority" of the British and Americans over the evils of the Nazi regime.

Ordinary working people fought and died in the Second World War. Ordinary working people won the Second World War. For the sake of ordinary working people, let us not forget the sacrifices made on every side.

Many of the figures from this article are taken from "Freedom From Tyranny - The Fight Against Fascism and the Falsification of History" by Phil Katz, published by Manifesto Press.