A tide of revolt is sweeping through Tunisia, Egypt, Algeria, Jordan, and Yemen. The Syrian regime has cut off the internet in fear that the contagion will spread to them.
These are not Islamist movements, as apologists for Mubarak have been claiming. The whole population has taken part, irrespective of their exact stance on matters of religion. In Egypt thousands defied the instructions of their imams not to go onto the streets; there have also been examples of a conscious rejection of sectarian divisions between Muslims and Christians, in a country where the latter minority has been subjected to massacres very recently.
But neither are they movements for parliamentary democracy, for the cosmetic political reform of a moribund social system, even if many of the movement’s participants may be hampered by such democratic illusions.
They are not ‘middle class’ movements: as with the student revolt over here, the majority of university students in Tunisia, Egypt, France, Greece, are today part of the working class.
These rebellions are part of a worldwide movement of the working class, the proletariat, the exploited. The same class movement that has appeared in Greece, in France, and here in the UK, in response to the capitalist economic crisis, to the despicable corruption and hypocrisy of the ruling class, and to the ruthless austerity drive of all governments, right wing or left wing.
This is why we must proclaim our total solidarity with the workers, unemployed, students and others who are leading these rebellions, and our opposition to all the forces seeking to block their evolution, from the open police violence of ‘dictators’ to the false promises of the democratic or Islamist politicians who seek to use the revolt for their own ends.
These movements are important to discuss at public meetings, demonstrations, and wherever we take up our own struggles.
To discuss what initiatives might be possible or useful, you can email us, post on the forum on our website, or raise the issue on other class struggle forums, such as http://www.libcom.org