Jospin's 'Trotskyist' past?

Barry Stoller bstoller at
Tue Jun 5 16:51:46 MDT 2001

CNN. 5 June 2001. Jospin admits Trotskyist past.

PARIS — French Prime Minister Lionel Jospin has admitted past links to a
revolutionary Trotskyist organisation.

Jospin had previously denied any involvement with radical communists but
during parliamentary question time on Tuesday said he had done nothing
to be ashamed of.

"It is true that in the 1960s I showed an interest in Trotskyist ideas
and developed a relationship with one of that movement's groups," Jospin
told the National Assembly.

"It was a personal, intellectual and political process ... that I have
nothing to be red-faced about."

The 63-year-old, who has steered a centre-left [read: class
collaborationist] course since becoming prime minister in 1997, said he
was drawn to Trotskyism in his youth because of its anti-Stalinist

"I met several remarkable men, and that contributed to my education,"
Jospin told lawmakers.

"What is important today is what I have done in the past four years, and
also maybe what we will do together in the future."

Jospin has been coy about expectations that he will challenge
conservative Jacques Chirac in next year's presidential election.

Tuesday's Le Monde newspaper said that Jospin's involvement in the
Trotskyist International Communist Organization (OCI) movement was kept
secret because he was still a student at the prestigious Ecole Nationale
d'Administration, the training ground for France's political elite.

He quietly maintained relations with the movement for over 20 years, the
paper said.

Other lawmakers immediately demanded to know why it had taken Jospin so
long to confirm what have been persistent rumours.

"It is not the fact that he used to belong to the extreme left that
poses a problem, it is the fact that he hid it," Reuters quoted
arch-conservative Philippe de Villiers saying.

Ironically the accusations of a hard-core Marxist past have resurfaced
at a time when Jospin's coalition allies, the Communist Party, have
attacked him for being too moderate.

Jospin was forced to delay voting last week on a key bill regulating
mass lay-offs after the Communists said it was too kind to big business.


For those who read French, the Le Monde article...,5987,3224--191133-,00.html


Barry Stoller

Proletarian news & Leninist debate

More information about the Marxism mailing list