Yossi Schwartz, ISL the RCIT the section in Israel/Occupied Palestine, 15.02.2022
The Arab revolutionary struggle began in Tunisia in December 2010 after Mohamed Bouazizi, a 26-year-old street vendor protested his treatment by local officials by burning himself. . A protest movement, dubbed the “Jasmine Revolution” spread through the country and brought down the dictatorship of Ben Ali. Lacking a working-class revolutionary leadership the revolution was unfinished and the capitalist class remained in power. As part of the counter-revolution in democratic dress, President Kais Saied replaced Ben Ali. This dictator issued today a decree that formed a new provisional Supreme Judiciary Council, granting himself the power to control the country’s supreme judicial body.
“The decree, published on the official gazette on Sunday, says the president controls the selection, appointment, promotion, and transfers of judges and can act in certain circumstances as a disciplinary body in charge of removals. Contrary to international law, none of the judges appointed in the new council will be elected” [i]
Enough is enough said the masses and took to the streets. Waving Tunisian flags, the masses chanted “Shut down the coup… take your hands off the judiciary”. Like in any country that had not gone through the bourgeois-democratic revolution the revolutionary struggle begins with democratic demands. However, to win the revolutionary struggle it must go on and end with a socialist revolution that creates a workers state in the same revolutionary process unlike the position held by the reformist and the centrists who preach first a democratic revolution and in another stage in the far future a socialist revolution. A revolution that is part of the world socialist revolution.
This is the time to organize action committees in every neighborhood and every village and build democratically elected worker and poor peasants revolutionary councils to lead the revolution. In addition to organizing self-defense units, to be able to bring the soldiers to the side of the revolution.
In Canada, there is a very strong movement of truck drivers and the many other people that support them. Truckers have been blocking the main bridge between Canada and the United States over-vaccination rules. They have defied a judge’s order to leave, and end the four-day-long blockade of the Ambassador Bridge. The truckers are supported by many other protesters who oppose Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Bonaparte’s regime. Trudeau has promised USA President Joe Biden quick action to disperse the masses.
The Police that stood until Saturday a few blocks away from the protesters were handing out pamphlets that threatened penalties under Ontario’s emergency order that the government declared.
“The “Freedom Convoy” protests, started by Canadian truckers opposing a vaccine-or-quarantine mandate for cross-border drivers, are also occupying areas outside the government buildings in the national capital, Ottawa, and have blocked two smaller US crossings.” [ii]
“While authorities were under increasing pressure to crack down on the demonstrations, federal, provincial, and local authorities hesitated to forcibly remove the protesters… But the pressure to open the border crossings has been mounting, with automakers Ford, General Motors, Toyota and Honda closing plants or canceling shifts”. On Saturday the police began to use force to remove the truckers. A crowd exceeding 10,000 people has made their way between the trucks towards the parliament building, Al Jazeera contributor Roger Lemoyne has reported. Many wave Canadian flags, with some draping them as capes and others tying the flags to hockey sticks. Earlier on the road from Montreal to Ottawa, many vehicles were seen with the message “Freedom” displayed” [iii]
Trudeau’s government and the capitalist mass media attack the truck drivers and characterize it as a right-wing movement similar to the event on January 6 2021 in the USA.
Justin Trudeau said Canadians were “shocked and frankly disgusted” by some protesters’ behavior, which has reportedly included vandalism and racial abuse.” [iv]
“ On Sunday, the Ambassador Bridge on the U.S.-Canada border between Detroit and Windsor, Ontario, was reopened after a weeklong protest, in which a handful of right-wing fanatics had been blocking the bridge and holding up some $355 million in goods in protest against a vaccine mandate for the trucking industry”…. But these protests are just the visible part of a larger right-wing occupation movement, and indicative of a worrying anti-government trend. And equally, as worrying is how law enforcement on both sides of the border has responded” [v]
On Monday, Trudeau has invoked an emergency measure for the first time in Canada’s history to give his government more power to respond to ongoing anti-government trucker protests.
“In a news conference on Monday afternoon, Trudeau said he was invoking the Emergencies Act, which allows the federal government to take “special temporary measures” for a period of 30 days during national emergencies.” [vi]
Right-wing organizations are riding on the truck drivers’ justified protest. We can see in the protest confederation and Nazi’s flags. Trump gave a speech in support of the freedom convoy. Christian crowdfunding of GiveSendGo raised more than US$8.1 million by Feb. 10 for the convoy…
Some of the speakers in the protest are known right-wingers. For example, James Bauder: who in December 2020 “posted on Facebook about his skepticism over the origins of COVID-19, perpetuating the disproven belief that the virus was intentionally created in and leaked from a lab in Wuhan, China, as a bioweapon and wrongly implied that billionaire George Soros may have been involved. Soros is often the subject of anti-Semitic conspiracy theories spread online.” [vii]
“Benjamin Dichter, also known as BJ Dichterresponse to Confederate flags that were seen in the convoy in Ottawa, Dichter said in a Twitter Space Livestream with former Rebel Media presenters Keean Bexte and Lauren Southern that he didn’t care about their presence.“Let’s assume there were guys there who did have a Confederate flag,” he said. “They believe in the confederacy of states’ rights in a foreign nation? I don’t care.” [viii]
However, the freedom convoy cannot be dismissed as a right-wing movement. Even the right-wing centrist – the IMT wrote:
“Various convoy Facebook groups have had hundreds of thousands of members. One current group has more than 635,000 members. Not all of these people who support the convoy are fascists and anti-vaxxers. Many are workers who are anxious about the pandemic, inflation, and job losses. They are seeking a way out of the situation and at the moment the convoy appears to be an anti-establishment option”…. his popular support for the “Freedom Convoy” is undeniable. A recent and ongoing Innovative Research poll shows that 31 percent support the trucker protest with 46 percent opposed. Another poll by Abacus Data shows that 32 percent feel they have a lot in common with how the protesters in Ottawa see things with 68 percent saying they have very little in common. This is not an insignificant level of support for the convoy. The global crisis of capitalism has opened a period of unprecedented social instability and sharp political polarization and confusion. There is a growing mood of distrust in the establishment and frustration at the status quo. Many people are looking for an outlet and anti-establishment alternatives. These processes have been accentuated by the global pandemic” The working class has plenty of reasons to be angry at the handling of the pandemic. The response of governments to COVID-19 has been inconsistent and contradictory. The reason for this inconsistent approach is that governments have prioritized the interests of the ruling class and the profits of the big corporations over the health of workers.” [ix]
At the same time, the IMT which criticizes the reformist and the union bureaucracy for failing to support the working class against the counter-revolutionary government of Canada offers only an economist program rather than a revolutionary program.
“The “Freedom Convoy” could be split into class lines by a bold program of demands for higher wages, benefits, and safer working conditions for truckers. The labor movement could mobilize to fight for a proper union for employed truckers and owner-operators. Working-class truckers could be won over to support such a program that defends their class interests and addresses the actual issues they face. This would expose and weaken the right-wing leadership of the convoy.” [x]
It is not difficult to understand how the right-wing elements have penetrated this protest. The reformist parties, many centrist groups, and the union bureaucracy are standing with the capitalist governments and their counter-revolutionary measures against the working class.
“NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh said Monday that while he sees the prime minister’s decision to turn to the Emergencies Act as “proof of a failure of leadership,” he will support the declaration — which should secure its passage through a minority Parliament.” [xi]
“The bureaucracy of the Teamsters union has taken the side of the government and the capitalists saying:
“Teamsters Canada would welcome collaboration with government and employers to address today’s real challenges in the trucking industry to keep the supply chain going and Canada’s economy growing” [xii]
“The Canadian Stalinist party that supports Russian imperialism in the Ukraine crisis also side with the reactionary government saying:
“The Communist Party of Canada views the “Freedom Convoy” as a public expression of the increasingly organized and assertive far right. The clear links between the organizers of the convoy and far-right networks indicate that this is not a spontaneous working-class demonstration. On the contrary, it is part of a global phenomenon: the rise and mainstreaming of the far-right, which is demonstrated by the strong support (ideologically and financially) from the US far-right and circles close to Donald Trump and the Jan. 6th insurrection. The convoy is filled with Nazi and Confederated flags, election signs for Bernier, and all sorts of far-right symbols. The $10 million raised through Go Fund Me for this convoy also showcases that this was planned by ultra-right networks. It is certainly not the meager earnings of the working class that is funding this effort” [xiii]
At the same time under the effect of the struggle of the truck drivers the government retreats.” With the worst of Omicron now behind us, our government is actively reviewing the measures in place at our borders and we should be able to communicate changes on this next week,” Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos told reporters.” [xiv]
The RCIT as a revolutionary internationalist organization takes the side of the truck drivers and at the same time calls to kick out the right-wing elements.
This is the time to organize a general strike to bring down the counter-revolutionary government that serves the big capitalists. The policemen are no more than hooligans in uniform who serve the big capitalists with a long history of racism and violence against the workers, the blacks, and the Indians. The only government we can trust is a worker’s government serving the workers and the poor.
Down with the counter-revolutionary government!
Kick out the right-wing elements from the freedom convoy!
Kick out the bureaucrats in the trade unions who serve the capitalists!
For a General Strike to bring down the reactionary government!
For a real program to fight the Coved 19, expand health care!
expropriate the big capital under workers’ control!
For a worker’s government!