[Marxism] Summer of Class Struggle in Germany?

Johannes Schneider Johannes.Schneider at gmx.net
Wed Aug 8 05:39:42 MDT 2007

A court has just banned the planned locomotive engineers strike until September 30th. The reason given was the potential "immense dammage afflicted on German economy." 

This means a strike is only legal in Germany as long as it is ineffective.

The union GDL has cancelled the start of the strike tomorrow and is seeking to overrule the strike ban by a higher court.


Associated Press report from the Forbes website:

Court: German Rail Workers Can't Strike
Associated Press 08.08.07, 5:16 AM ET 


A labor court on Wednesday barred German train drivers from striking later this week, amid fears the threatened walkout could damage the economy. The drivers' union said it would appeal.

Werner Bayreuther, the top negotiator for Deutsche Bahn railways, said the court in Nuremberg issued an injunction against the drivers for freight trains walking off the job on Thursday as planned.

The court based its ruling on fears the strike could cause irrevocable damage to the economy, coming at the height of Germany's tourist season, court spokesman Wilfried Eck said.

Deutsche Bahn carries some 5 million passengers daily.

The leader of the GDL union, representing some 12,000 train drivers, said they planned to appeal the injunction, which has effect until Sept. 30.

"It is very strange that the court ruled without questioning those involved," Manfred Schell told N24 television.

GDL is seeking a 31 percent pay hike for its members and has rejected a 4.5 percent raise that Deutsche Bahn agreed to last month in talks with two other unions that represent rail employees.

GDL members on Monday overwhelmingly voted to walk off their jobs and union leaders had said they would start with a four-hour strike against freight trains on Thursday, which was expected to disrupt passenger services traveling on the same network.

Train drivers insist they are only seeking their share of the recent upswing in Germany's economy, while Deutsche Bahn is trying to keep its costs down before a planned privatization next year.


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