The riots which are occurring in the French city suburbs are a new expression of capitalism bankruptcy and of the class nature of the bourgeois State.
If they happen after the death of teenagers coming back home after a football game in Clichy-sous-Bois and who, terrorised by the usual and daily methods of the police, wanted to escape to another hard "identity control", soon or later they were inescapable, forseeable, and even "foreseen" because the situation of misery and despair which exists in these poor and workers neighborhoods.
Capitalism is clearly unable to integrate in its mode of production a growing number of children of workers families (oftenly already suffering unemployment and precariousness for decades). The "weakest" of these workers' children without other perspectives than idleness, misery, fall into gratuitous violence, into traffic and delinquency.
For the others, the great majority, who don't fully give in to despair, the only perspective is the same as for their parents : "precariousness", "small" jobs, arrogance and dictatorship of the chiefs and bosses for salaries of misery and the permanent threat of redudancy. All this in living conditions, housing, transportation, neighborhood, which are more and more insalubrious and unbearable.
The true "insecurity of the suburbs" is the insecurity of the living conditions imposed by capitalism. Insecurity is capitalism.
The only response the bourgeoisie and its State give to this situation of misery and despair is repression. Repression against the fire-raisers and other stone throwers but also repression against these neighborhoods and their people. As the American bourgeoisie had firstly and above all shot at the starving poor population of New-Orleans after Katrina hurricane, the French bourgeoisie declares the "State of Emergency" and set up the curfew. This one means : massive police presence, blind arrests, prison condemnations in "urgency", "as an example", the right for the police to enter and to search at home at any hour, etc...
C'est un véritable langage de guerre civile qu'emploie la bourgeoisie. Tout comme Bush et la bourgeoisie américaine avait utilisé les hélicoptères pour mitrailler les civils, Chirac et la bourgeoisie française font tourner toute la nuit les hélicoptères hurlant et aveuglant les immeubles des cités créant ainsi un climat de guerre et de terreur accrue. En passant, il faut noter que c'est une nouvelle occasion, après les mesures anti-terroristes, pour la bourgeoisie "d'habituer" la population aux mesures guerrières et à l'état de siège.
Pour qui connaît l'attitude agressive, insultante, méprisante, provocatrice de la police au quotidien, c'est-à-dire dans une situation "normale", "calme", en particulier dans les banlieues ouvrières, il est facile de comprendre ce que signifie, concrètement, pour la population ouvrière de ces quartiers, "l'état d'urgence", le couvre-feu et le déploiement massif des forces de police.
La "violence" des banlieues, c'est en premier lieu la violence de l'Etat bourgeois.
It's a true language of civil war the bourgeoisie is using of. As Bush and the American bourgeoisie had utilized helicopters to machine gun the civilians, Chirac and the French bourgeoisie are making run all night helicopters yelling and dazzling the buildings of the "cités" which creates an increased war and terror climate. By the way, it matters to notice that it's a new occasion, after the anti-terrorist measures, for the bourgeoisie to get the population used to warlike and state of siege means.
For who knows the agressive, insulting, contemptuous, provocative attitude of the police in the daily life, it means in a "normal", "calm", situation in the working class suburbs, it's easy to understand what concretly means for the working class population of these neighborhoods the "State of Emergency", the curfew and the massive police forces deployment.
The "violence" of the suburbs is, in first place, the violence of the bourgeois State.
The minority of "youths" who burn cars and schools are workers' sons. As their friends and school comrades. Almost all their neighbors belong to the same social class, the working class. All, what ever is their origin or their "religion", are part of the same class. And however, they essentially attack and destroy their own district already well deteriorated, their neighbors'cars, the schools and the gymnasiums where they've gone and where they still go. And even sometimes, some of them physically attack individuals, relatives, friends, neighbors, up to led to death.
This violence is even more blind since it mainly, directly or undirectly, exerts against the neighbors and the relatives, or even against bus drivers, teachers, firemen, etc... It means against theirs.
This violence which turns its back to collective and organised struggle against the true responsible for misery and despair, it means capitalism and the social class which rules this society through the State, is with no hope, nor perspective. Even worst, it provides the pretext for imposing an even more important police presence in the name of the citizens' security and a reinforced control of the population.
Contrary to what some could believe, the "revolt", when there is really "revolt", as it expresses today, is only useful for the bourgeois State and capitalism.
The whole proletarians, workers, employees, unemployed, are hit and shocked by the material destructions provoked, by the increased police presence, by the exaggerations and the comptemptuous comments of the medias, by the climate of violence and distrust, indeed of terror, which develop in these suburbs. All reject the acts of gratuituous and blind violence. Much reject too the massive presence of the police and the "State of Emergency". All feel to be caught in a strangehold between the growing fear of the gangs in the districts which sometimes exert a true terror, and the terror developed by the police and the State.
They must reject to be caught in the false alternative, or "laisser-faire", or State repression. Capitalism and its State are unable to respond to misery and to despair. Even worst : they live of it.
These dramatic events express the lack of "perspectives", it's said everywhere. But who can offer a real, realistic, and hopeful perspective ? Certainly not capitalism. Certainly not the bourgeois State. Certainly not the political forces, right and left, since they all are part, in one way or another, of this State.
Only the struggles of the working class, the ones which resist to the various attacks of capitalism, are the path to really oppose capitalism. Only their development and their widening can offer a perspective, the only one realistic, the one of an effective generalised confrontation with the bourgeois State. Only the class struggle, class against class, can destroy capitalism and set up a new society in which misery, war, exploitation, and finally social classes, will disappear. This society of the only possible future is the communist society.
Today, in this situation of strikes and of "social tensions", a great part of the workers, youths and parents, a great part of the population of the suburbs, have already begun to debate these questions and to discuss with the "youths". We must develop these meetings, these discussions, and organize to make them open places to the debates and to concrete social and "political" proposals while derailing the greater number of "youths" of the destroying and murderous dead-end in which they are engaged.
At the same time, strikes and workers demonstrations have occurred these late months (1). In particular in the urban transports as in Marseille... and lately in Nancy, Bordeaux, etc... but also in various companies of the private sector as of the public one, against redudancies or for wages raising. As well, unemployed demonstrations, even if they are under the control of the Left parties and of the unions, are happening. It's in the multiplication of these fights and in their gathering, their unification, that the feelings of revolt of the workers' children, as of their parents, can express effectively.
In relation to these struggles, the workers must tackle the questions and the problems related to the difficulties and the misery of the life in the workers "cités" of the suburbs ; at the immediate and concrete level by putting forwards "neighborhood" demands as well as at the general and historical level through the denunciation of the responsible for these living conditions : capitalism. It's up to the whole working class to present to the whole society the perspective of a collective struggle against capitalism by the development of its demanding struggles, employed and unemployed workers from the work place, but also by putting forwards concrete demands, housing, transportation, school conditions, etc. related to the living conditions... The affirmation and the development of these struggles while "extinguishing" the gratuituous and blind violences, are the true response against capitalism since, even if they won't be enough in themselves, they bring in themselves the "hydra of revolution" as said Lenin.
It belongs to the communists, to the revolutionaries, and to the more conscious and militant workers to "win" the whole working class to this struggle, in particular the new generation of "young" workers.
It's the only road in front of capitalism and its State. There is no other.
November 10th 2005
Internal Fraction of the International Communist Currentl
1. See our lealfet on our web site Against the growing misery which the bourgeoisie imposes upon us, let's mulitply our struggles and let's unify them, October 16th 2005 (only in french).
Communist Bulletin Nš 33 - Internal Fraction of ICC