France's Hot December - 1

Adam Rose adam at pmel.com
Thu May 23 03:07:09 MDT 1996



I was tempted to quote the introduction verbatim.
Here's the edited highlights.

1. Importance of the strike.

"December 1995 saw the biggest erruption of class struggle in France
for a quarter of a century. Some 2 million public sector workers
took strike action over a 3 1/2 week period.

"This was not a general strike . . . But it virtually paralysed
communications in cities right across France. And it thrust the
class struggle to the centre of political life.

"All this happened eight months after the victory of Chirac.
. . . around a quarter of workers voting for the fascist FN . . .
union membership had suffered a very big fall."

"The strikes inevitably evoked comparisons with the two great
previous upsurges of working class struggle in France ( 1936 +
1968 ) . . . But they also raise questions which go far beyond
French politcs.

" . . . they put in question a central strategy of key sections of
European Capital, Economic + Monetary Union ( EMU ). ... also ...
how far ruling classes dare to go in cutting back on wlefare.

"They constitute a challenge to all those who want to pretend that
class struggle is a thing of the past".




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