French working class must take power to begin the European Socialist revolution!

17th June 2024 by

NEARLY a quarter of a million French workers have taken part in mass rallies across the country against the French fascists, calling on the working class to rise up and block the right wing from taking office in the snap parliamentary elections called by President Emmanuel Macron.

On Saturday, the French Interior Ministry said it had deployed 21,000 police and gendarmes to enforce law and order at the anti-far-right protest ahead of the elections, with the authorities expecting between 300,000 and 500,000 workers and sections of the rural poor to turn out nationwide.

Rallies organised by French workers’ unions, anti-racism migrant groups, and the new left-wing alliance have already been staged in Paris and in other cities across France including Marseilles, Toulouse, Lyon, and Lille.

In Paris, protestors held placards reading: ‘Liberty for all, Equality for all and Fraternity with all’ while chanting ‘Popular Front. Popular Front.’

The protesters gathered at the Place de la Republique before marching through eastern Paris to show support for the newly-created left alliance ‘Popular Front’ against the surging fascist far-right led by Marine Le Pen, ahead of the snap legislative elections scheduled for June 30 and July 7th.

The Popular Front consists of French left-wing groups La France Insoumise (LFI), the French Communist Party, and the French Socialist Party, etc.

Macron dissolved the French parliament and called a snap election after the far-right made major gains in the European elections.

‘I’ve decided to hand you back the choice of our parliamentary future with a vote,’ Macron announced last week. ‘I am therefore dissolving the National Assembly.’

Less than a week after the sudden dissolution of parliament by Macron, France’s trade unions, associations, and the left-wing coalition by the name of ‘Nouveau Front Populaire’ were called out onto the streets to ‘reclaim the country’ by staging mass protests across France to drive the fascists off the streets.

Speaking at Saturday’s rally, leader of LFI (France Unbowed), Mathilde Panot, announced Macron’s stint in office had come to an end. He said: ‘On Sunday, (the period) after Macron began, I believe that Macron is finished, as everyone today understands it, and so the decision that will be made on 30th June and on 7th July with our citizens’ ballot papers, will be, either it’s them, the extreme right, or it’s us.’

Marine Tondelier, National Secretary Of Les Ecologistes (The Ecologists Party), said it was ‘moving’ to see so many people showing support for the Popular Front alliance, which will go head-to-head against the National Rally (RN) in the snap parliamentary election, to be held over the coming month.

‘Today the “Popular Front” must become popular, it’s that that we’re doing today, thanks also to trade unions, and it’s extremely moving for us to see what we have created in little meetings, (via) Zoom, in person, in a group of three or four, etc. It’s being transformed today by a tide of people in the Place de la Republique.’

Leader of the French Communist Party, Ian Brossat, said at the rally that the Communists won’t allow the right-wing politicians to gain power.

‘We are here, we are here because we will never entertain the idea that these people will seize power in a country like France, because we will never entertain the idea that racism, that discrimination, on the basis of skin colour, on the basis of religion, can exist in the seventh most powerful economy in the world, France.’

Also present at the protest rally was CGT Union leader Sophie Binet. She called for mass participation in upcoming elections, warning of ‘a deadly threat to our democracy and our freedoms and the reputation of our country in the world.’

‘All it takes is for people who didn’t take part in previous elections to do so. They’ll decide. The last election saw a 50 per cent turnout, so half of the French didn’t vote so people need to go and vote. They should make a conscious choice to avoid waking up with a bad hangover on July 8th,’ one protester at the rally said.

Macron remains in power until 2027, but he would be weakened if the RN wins and takes power over the government and domestic policy.

To ward off the new threat posed by the RN’s rise, anti-racism groups have joined French unions and the brand-new left-wing coalition to form the ‘Popular Front’ against the surging nationalist far right in the elections.

The issue now is whether the government will fall to the left or to the right opening up the door for the French fascists to enter. The French trade unions must call an indefinite general strike and organise workers’ militias to drive the fascists off the streets. The French revolution has begun and it must be the beginning of the much needed European Socialist revolution!