Fighting opportunism
About the Struggle against the "CPE" in France (Spring 2006)

Foreword : Some of the quotations we make of the ICC press are in English, some aren't and thus translated by us. Only the following texts of the ICC are available in English on the web site : the theses (International Review 125), Greetings to the new generation of the working class ! (Internationalism 138)
The other ICC texts, leaflets and articles of 2006, are translated by us, included the "old" International Review (14, 40, 44, 47, 53 and 74) of the years 1970, 1980 and 1993 which aren't available too.

Marx to P. and L. Lafargue
April 19, 1870

The working class must not occupy itself with politics. They must only organise themselves by trades-unions. One fine day, by means of the Internationale they will supplant the place of all existing states. You see what a caricature he [Bakunin] has made of my doctrines! As the transformation of the existing States into Associations is our last end, we must allow the governments, those great Trade-Unions of the ruling classes, to do as they like, because to occupy ourselves with them is to acknowledge them. Why! In the same way the old socialists said: You must not occupy yourselves with the wages question, because you want to abolish wages labour, and to struggle with the capitalist about the rate of wages is to acknowledge the wages system! The ass has not even seen that every class movement as a class movement, is necessarily and was always a political movement.
( The underlining is from our Fraction)

Here we go back to the present ICC intervention in the struggle against the "CPE" in France in 2006. In our previous bulletin, we denounced the grossest opportunist elements of this intervention, the ones which openly turned their back to the positions and the interests of our class 1. Here, we're going to turn our attention to the analysis the "new" ICC has developed regarding this struggle and we're going to look at :

Since the 2001 organisational crisis, we already had the occasion to underline and to show how the positions and the intervention of the ICC in the workers struggles in these last years have openly broken with its past experience : indifference towards the 2001 Argentinian struggles, defeatism during the 2003 French massive struggles, work of strikebreaker at the "wildcat" strike of the OPEL factory of Bochum in Germany in October 2004 2. Last Spring, despite the fact it (finally !) involves itself in a struggle, the one against the CPE, its intervention has not been an exception to the rule.

1 - An intervention without compass

The struggle against the CPE : an example for the whole working class ?

Correctly, the ICC has considered that the movement had a proletarian character - contrary, for instance, to what it had defended about the 2001 Argentinian workers struggles. Unfortunately, even if it was breaking with it past indifference and it could seem it was making a turn, this point has been the only one correct in its analysis. Since for the rest, the ICC understanding is marked by a vision, an illusion in the best case, that the dynamic of this struggle (in particular its extension to the whole sectors of the proletariat in France) could be brought by the students themselves. That they were the example to follow. Almost all the leaflets and articles the Current has produced during this period of time, have greeted "an exemplary struggle of the working class" (International Review 125, Theses on the spring 2006 students' movement in France, Presentation). Up to even run as an article headline of a Révolution Internationale 367 [French press of the ICC] that "Solidarity of the students' movement [is] an example for the whole working class" ; and to write in its leaflet of March 16th that "the mobilisation and the students' assemblies show us the way" ; and addresssing the students only "your movement, your courage, your deep sense of solidarity show the example for the whole working class"  ; up to conclude that "the children of the working class who are in the vanguard of the student movement are the only ones who can open up a perspective for the whole of society" (Internationalism 138, Greetings to the new generation of the working class !, we underline). Later on, militants of this ICC won't hesitate to declare, in the debates at the "Fête" of the French Trotskist group Lutte Ouvrière, that "the Spanish workers in struggle in Vigo have followed the example of the French students..."

This vision is at the same time false from the point of view of the necessities of the struggle, illusory for the students and deceptive for the whole working class. Despite the proletarian character of this struggle, the students remain a part, certainly combative, but weak and without experience, of the working class. It couldn't by itself alone impose a relation of forces to the bourgeois State, nor develop a dynamic enabling the real widening of the fight. The fate of the struggle relied on the fact that other sectors of the working class, more central, more determining, more experienced, launched into an open struggle by mean of the strike, that they took its leadership and could so impose a wider perspective and a more favourable relation of forces 3.

The ICC of today and May 1968

The error of analysis - and thus the mistaken intervention, in this case focusing the intervention exclusively to the student sector - is coupled with an important political, and even of principle, questioning : "the children of the working class who are in the vanguard of the student movement are the only ones who can open up a perspective for the whole of society". In order to base this affirmation which is openly revisionist, the Theses are led to make a comparison between May 1968 in France and the 2006 struggle : "The present mobilisation of the students, notably its capacity to organise itself and to discuss and reflect upon the problems it faces, including the problem of violence, thus marks a much clearer step towards the revolution [the French version says it is "much closer to revolution"], towards the overturning of bourgeois order, than the barricades of May 68" (International Review 125, point 17 of the Theses, we underline).

This comparison isn't only "bold". It openly makes a revision of the position the ICC have always defended on May 68. "The barricades of May" had never have importance to the true ICC. It has always denounced "all those «analysis» or explanations (which) emphasize on the spectacular role of the student movement and try to minimize the role of the working class (...)" (International Review 14, 1978, May 68, the revival of the proletarian struggle, translated by us). The strength of May 1968 has never been in the students' demonstrations which were not considered by us but as the "top" and the last expression of resistance by a social stratum which is essentially marked by bourgeois, and above all petty-bourgeois, ideology.

The strength of May 1968 was in the workers strikes which have "changed drastically and irrevocably the historical situation. 10 millions workers, at the heart of the most industrialized zone of the world, had closed with sensation a door of history : the one of almost 40 years of ideological crushing of the proletariat, 40 years of triumphant counter-revolution" (Int. Review 53, 1988, we translate). Still in 1988, we carried on denouncing - against the Theses of today - the fact that "what has been, for the number of participants and for the length, the greatest workers strike in history is today presented as a student agitation [... whereas...] what came to drastically change everything, what transformed «the events of May» into a major explosion, was the proletariat's entrance on the scene. It's when, in mid-May, the almost entire working class launched out into the battle and paralysed the near total of the essential mechanisms of the economical machine, that the serious things begun" (International Review 74, What does remain of May 68 ?, we translate).

And precisely, what does remain of May 68 for the liquidators of the ICC ? They claim today the student movement of 1968 and not the workers movement one ! The recent students' and collegians' struggle against the CPE has a proletarian nature that the barricades of May 68 didn't have. If there is a parallel to make between the 1968 movement and the one of 2006, it has to be made between the workers strikes of May 68 and the struggle against the CPE. Then, all the limits and the weaknesses of the 2006 movement, as well as the intervention which had to be led, do appear very clearly : "The main weakness of the movement, and the political stake of the class combat, was the fact that the salaried working class, its more determining part, did not join the students in the opened, massive, renewable strike. It thus could not take the head of the fight and give it another dimension even if it took part massively in the street demonstrations behind the trade unions" (Our bulletin 35, The lessons of the struggle against the CPE). One more time, the ICC continuity is maintained only by our fraction.

For anyone who keeps in memory the positions of always of our organisation, on May 68 and on the struggles of the years 1980, the statement of the ICC of the liquidators collapses :"the mobilisation and the students' assemblies [don't] show us the way" (March 16th leaflet) and the Theses aren't worth anymore.

The overestimation of the movement against the CPE

It's on the basis of this erroneous vision, turning the back to the very positions of the original ICC, forgetting where the proletariat's strength stands and how it expresses itself, that this organisation has completely overestimated the reality of this movement and the students' strength. This analysis that we find again in the theses, over-evaluates in an unbelievable manner the reality for this movement at least on three levels : the very dynamic of the struggle amongst the students ; the general situation of the relations of forces between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie in France ; the supposed weakness of the bourgeoisie, of its political State apparatus. And we're going to see too that this overestimation of the movement is directly and closely linked with the forgetting of the permanent political dimension of the classes struggle. It means linked to a councilist underestimation of this dimension and, consequently, of the real role of the revolutionary organisations.

Assemblies in the image of the 1917 workers councils ?

In a striking and more than bold parallel 4 with the Rusian and German revolutions, the students assemblies are presented as functioning "on the model of the workers’ councils. The richness of the discussion, where everyone can speak and express their point of view, the way the tribune organises the debates, the votes, the creation of different commissions, the nomination of delegates elected and revocable by the general assemblies, this whole dynamic, this method of struggle are those which have arisen in the highest moments of the class struggle: in 1905 and 1917 in Russia, in 1918 in Germany (...)" (see the Introduction to the Paris Public Meeting of March 11th on the ICC web site). The Theses extend on more than a page to describe us how the general assemblies organized themselves in order to prove that they were the "lung of the movement". We'll spare the readers of it. Let's just point out that the text which is only published in english, Notes from the students' movement in France 5, salutes "an extraordinary degree of organisation".

Anyone can notice that we're confronted here to a real apology, indeed a cult, of self-organisation of the struggle, considered in itself, independently and outside the political confrontation against the bourgeois forces. We'll go back on this.

The possibility of a mass strike and a panic of the bourgeoisie ?

Coming with this apology of the student assemblies, the presentation of the theses - which were adopted afterwards, thus in cold blood and after reflection we could hope, couldn't we ? - makes an even more unbelievable overestimation of the general situation and of the relation of forces between the classes. According to them, the French proletariat was on the verge of mass strike.

"It increased the likelihood of spontaneous walkouts in the productive sector of the economy, as in 1968" (Review 125, Presentation of the Theses, we underline) [the French version is even more assertive. The exact translation is : "Moreover, the danger of spontaneous starting of strikes in the directly productive sector as it happened in 1968, has become more and more present"]. Here we must note that the ICC points out that the real possibility of a generalisation of the strike to the whole working class has "increased" all along the struggle against the CPE. In other words that the immediate relation of forces between the classes, proletariat and bourgeoisie, was inclining "more and more" in favour of the proletariat.

How does the present ICC explain such a situation ? By a considerable weakening of the French bourgeoisie and of all its State apparatus, firstly the political one. According to the Theses, "One of the most important characteristics of the current episode of the class struggle in France is that it took all the sectors of the bourgeoisie and its political apparatus (right wing and left wing parties and union organisations) almost totally by surprise. This is something that allows us to understand both the vitality and the depth of the movement as well as the extremely delicate situation that the ruling class in France is in at this time" (point 4). And, according to the Greetings to the new generation... we already quoted, "the Villepin clique is panicking".

In relation to the unions, "they never foresaw that they would completely lose their grip [the French version uses the word outflanked by the students] in most of the university towns (...). The CGT was made to look ridiculous (...). The unions have unmasked themselves with their own manoeuvres (...). This is why some of the more intelligent TV journalists have been saying that the unions have been humiliated. They have also been humiliated by the students spontaneous demonstrations on 14th March" (idem, Greetings...6.

Contrary to what these mythomaniac of politics can talk about, the bourgeoisie has never lost the control of the situation since the real danger, for it, couldn't come from the student sector, what ever combative it was. One could retort us that Prime Minister Villepin, under pressure, had to step back and withdraw his CPE. But where is the students' victory since it's clear they'll carry on, with or without diplomas, to feed the battalions of precarious workers and unemployed ? Where is their strength ? In their wordy and powerless assemblies 7 ? In the demonstrations where, finally, all the Left (up to the Socialist Party even so rejected at the beginning of the movement) was invited ?

The true danger for the bourgeoisie couldn't come but from the main sectors of the working class, it means the productive sectors. The key of the situation was (and will always be) there. Contrary to what the theses affirm gratuitously, the main fractions of the proletariat in France were not ready to openly struggle and even less to "spontaneously" launch strikes, it means to start a direct political fight against the unions manoeuvres. Opposed to the statements of the present ICC which has forgotten the lessons we drew of May 68, the bourgeoisie has remembered an important one : to make all it can to avoid that the workers, even though they sentimentally showed "solidarity" with the students, didn't join them into the open fight. And, in 2006, this risk was even more taken in account by the bourgeoisie since the students who were struggling, who were concerned by the CPE, represent the new generation of the proletariat.

The so-called over flanking of the unions expresses itself... by the global control of the street demonstrations (dates, itineraries and above all the fact that, in the demonstrations, the workers and students processions couldn't "mix up") and above all by the fact they have succeeded, without difficulties, to quell the slightest willingness of open and collective struggle in the work places.

2 - The Councilist poison (re)gains ground

The Councilist "tail endism" of the present ICC

But the new ICC isn't only making mistakes of analysis and not only showing the most appalling confusion in front of the classes struggle. It does sink today, more and more clearly, into the most vulgar councilism and it so liquidates the struggle this organisation has always led in its own ranks against the "councilist tendencies". In particular, it liquidates the lessons and the experience that it had drawn from the debate developed in the years 1980 on this question. Actually, the today ICC has shown the crassest tail endism to the students and the "youths", flattering their lack of experience and their illusions, presenting their movement as "exemplary" and those "young students" as the proletariat's vanguard. Not only, as we have shown below, reality is all different - the students are today a weak sector of the proletariat, without experience and sensitive to bourgeois and petty-bourgeois ideologies - but, moreover, their vision reveals a tendency the ICC had clearly rejected in its struggle against councilism : "The councilists spirit of indecisiveness and «tailism» [the French version uses "suivisme" which corresponds to "follow-ism"] which flatters any workers' action is particularly dangerous in this period" (International review 40, The Danger of councilism, 1985, translated by us from French).

As Lenin said, "what else is the function of Social-Democracy if not to be a “spirit” that not only hovers over the spontaneous movement, but also raises this movement to the level of “its programme”? Surely, it is not its function to drag at the tail of the movement. At best, this would be of no service to the movement; at worst, it would be exceedingly harmful" (What is to be done ? C. The self-emancipation group...).

The rejection of the indispensable confrontation with the bourgeoisie's forces

What is the Councilist type "mistake", charged with consequence for the future, which is introduced on this occasion and officialized by the theses ? It is the "forgetting" of the political importance in the struggle our class develops, of the concrete confrontation with the bourgeois forces. This "forgetting" notably expresses itself through the under-estimation of the bourgeoisie's action within the very struggles. If, in the "student's" struggle, the assemblies were at the image of the 1917 and 1919 workers councils, in a situation in which existed "a danger of strikes in the productive sector", how can we imagine that the Left and leftist parties, that the unions, didn't intervene within them in order to sabotage them ? Then, how can we imagine that there haven't been any true political confrontation within these assemblies ? Isn't what actually happened within the workers councils in Russia and Germany to take back to the audacious parallel of the ICC ? The vision the present ICC delivers us here represents a complete under-estimation of the very action of the bourgeoisie's forces within the struggles. And it fully lets aside the necessity for a political confrontation with the bourgeoisie, and firstly with its union and political forces being within the working class, in the work places, in the assemblies, in the demonstrations...

"This tactic of the bourgeoisie aiming at occupying the terrain (...) constitutes today a true political offensive of the bourgeoisie against the proletariat. This one can't avoid this political battle which is imposed upon it. It can't, nor may, let the Left parties and the unions freely operate on the terrain of the defence of its living conditions, but it must oppose and resolutely and systematically confront theirs manoeuvers on this terrain" (International review 44, Resolution of the 6th congress of the ICC adopted in November 1985, we underline and we translate.

"Let the Left parties and the unions freely operate" is exactly to what comes down the greeting without reserve, the pushing forwards of the examplarity of the student assemblies, that the present ICC is doing. So acting, it joins the councilist group Internationalist Perspectives which salutes "the attempt to keep the movement separate from the political parties and (...) separate 8 from the trade unions" (IP 46, A New Generation Entered the Arena), in the struggle against the "CPE" and which so openly invites the proletarian to desert the political fight instead of arming them against the class enemy's action in their own ranks. The apology of the student assemblies, presented as example to follow, isn't but the expression of the desertion by the liquidator's ICC of the real political confrontation with the political forces of the bourgeoisie within the struggle and the assemblies.

The opportunist apology of a-politism

This drift into councilism is openly brandished and claimed in the Theses. By comparing May 68 and the 2006 movement and by underlining the greatest profoundness of the latter, the Theses are led to make the apology of a-politism : "This is why, paradoxically, “radical” and “revolutionary” themes are not very present in the discussions and concerns of the students today. Whereas in 1968 they often turned the universities into permanent forums debating the question of the revolution, the workers’ councils, etc., the majority of discussions being held today are around much more “down to earth” questions like the CPE and its implications, job insecurity, the methods of struggle (blockades, general assemblies, coordinations, demonstrations etc.). However, their polarisation around the demand for the withdrawal of the CPE, which apparently reveals a much less “radical” ambition than in 1968, does not mean that the current movement is less profound than the one 38 years ago. On the contrary" (point 12, we underline). By the way, let's notice that the use of paradoxically comes to reveal the consciousness of the distinguished writer of the Theses that what he develops here is contradictory and breaking with all the vision that, up to now, the ICC defended about the necessary politicization of the struggles. And moreover this use of the word paradoxically spares the ICC militants who would still aspire to some memory to suppress this one without too much difficulties and to swallow the dish of the liquidation without too much stomach cramps.

At the risk of stimulating even more the rancour and the rage towards us, one more time we'll try to refresh the shameful memory of the ICC militants about what we were saying and were defending, positively, them and us, in common, about the political dimension of May 68.

"The word «revolution» came back in every mouth and the questions of what was possible, where to go, how had it happened in the great workers struggles of the past, became central subjects of discussion (...). There were discussions everywhere : in the streets, in the occupied factories, in the universities and the high schools, in the «youths' house» of the workers neighbourhood which were transformed in space of political meetings by the local «actions committees». The language of the workers movement which calls things by their name : bourgeoisie, proletariat, exploitation, classes struggle, revolution, etc. was developing since it was naturally the only one capable of defining reality" (International review 74, What Remains of May 1968 ?; 1993, translated by us).

How many times in the past, in the continuity of the marxist revolutionary movement, haven't our organisation fought against the vision of the anarchists and councilists of any kind which consists in rejecting the political dimension of the class struggle ? Have we to recall what Marx was saying about Bakunin in 1870 : " the ass has not even seen that every class movement as a class movement, is necessarily and was always a political movement" (Letter to Paul Lafargue, April 14th). One year later, Engels echoed him in a speech made in London : "Living experience, the political oppression of the existing governments compels the workers to occupy themselves with politics whether they like it or not, be it for political or for social goals. To preach abstention to them is to throw them into the embrace of bourgeois politics" (speech made at the London Conference of the International Working Men's Association, September 21, 1871). Decades later, Lenin developed this question against "economism" : "Instead of sounding the call to go forward towards the consolidation of the revolutionary organisation and the expansion of political activity, the call was issued for a retreat to the purely trade union struggle. It was announced that “the economic basis of the movement is eclipsed by the effort never to forget the political ideal”" (What is to be done ?, C. The Spontaneity of the Masses and the Consciousness of the Social-Democrats, b) Bowing to Spontaneity). Making the apology of the "prosaic" to the detriment of the "radical", the new ICC joins so clearly all those that marxism, all along its history, has constantly confronted, all those who tended to distort and to disarm the struggle of the working class at the daily level as well as at the historical one.

Fetishism of self-organisation

Following what precedes, the present ICC has so presented the students assemblies as the example to follow : "the solidarity and the courage of the students in struggle are exemplary. The freedom of expression and the culture of debate we can see in the massive general assemblies of the students, the decisions and the motions aiming at widen, deepen and organize the movement adopted hands up after discussion, the election of delegates responsible to the assembly, that is the true «democracy», it means a direct and responsible control by the students in struggle ! (March 16th ICC leaflet that we translate). The assemblies should have been the expression of the class character of the struggle and of the maturity of the movement. "The profoundly proletarian character of the movement is also demonstrated in the forms of struggle adopted, notably the sovereign general assemblies which express a real life that has nothing to do with the caricatures of general assemblies so often called by the unions (...)" (Theses, point 2).

We'll notice the opposition which is made here between the so-called "sovereign" assemblies of the students and the "caricatures" of assemblies in the work places, the very ones in which the unions are openly present and in which they openly intervene to sabotage the struggles. But what is the reality and the future of the proletarian fights ? Assemblies emptied by miracle of the unions and the leftists ? Or assemblies in which bourgeois forces and proletarian forces confront each other directly ? Thus, it's interesting to note here the vision of the ICC of today which has the genius to find the "a real life" of the class outside the classes struggle.

The cult of spontaneity : an other characteristic of councilism

The Theses don't directly deal with the question of spontaneity. But the report that the ICC press has made of a Public Meeting in Brazil does develop it as an expression of the strength and the profoundness of the movement against the "CPE".

"Actually, one of the characteristics of the movement of Salvador in 2003 as well as the mobilisations against the CPE have been their spontaneous character. These movement appeared spontaneously as a riposte of the young generations of future proletarians to precariousness that the bourgeoisie tries to impose through the measures it takes to face the economical crisis. The movement tended also to spontaneously organize by giving itself its own means of struggle. In the case of the students' movement in France, this could materialize in sovereign general assemblies with elected and removable delegates, strike committees, etc., thanks to the very dynamic of the movement and to the relative weakness of the union forces in these sectors which are indeed less strong than in the work places. The movement could thus oppose to the action of the unions and of the union students organisations which tend to maintain the movement within the framework of the bourgeois law and to control it in order to better stifle it" (Révolution internationale 371, Commune Public Meetings in Brazil, translated and underlined by us).

We don't go back to the spontaneous character of the student movement which doesn't appear to us so obvious. And still less to its capacity to "oppose to the action of the unions and of the union students organisations". We've seen it wasn't so. Too, we don't go back to the "sovereign" character of assemblies which gave up their power of decision and action to the unions and to the leftists ; and even to the Socialist Party. Here, spontaneity is presented as the main element which manifests the quality of the movement, the one which enabled the assemblies to supposedly be "sovereign", the one which had enabled to "oppose to the action of the unions", whereas it was nothing of the sort... Firstly, it matters to recall the manner with which our organisation, before its present drift, knew how to evaluate this one in the framework of the immediate struggles  :

"Spontaneous movements don't necessary materialize an higher level of consciousness than the movements developing after unions' calls :

- for one part, many struggles which are spontaneous at their start have been and are still easily re-controlled by the unions ;

- for other part, the systematic occupation of the social terrain by the Left in the opposition [not in the government] often leads the unions to anticipate to the fights full of strong potential for growing consciousness ;

- finally, in certain historical circumstances, in particular the ones when the Left is in government as it was frequently the case in the years 1960-1970, spontaneous or even wildcat strikes can only be the simple practical manifestation of the declared opposition of the unions to any struggle without expressing a high level of class consciousness in the class" (International Review 47, Resolution on the international situation, June 1986, underlined and translated by us).

This was at the time when the ICC was considering that, when the class expresses its readiness to fight back, the assemblies, even in the struggles called and organised by the unions, are places of "real life" which it must take the leadership of, and not caricatures of assemblies in the name of an abstract and idealist vision of "self-organisation", in the name of an imaginary "pure" class struggle.

About this cult of spontaneity, let's recall what Lenin was saying : "It is often said that the working class spontaneously gravitates towards socialism. This is perfectly true in the sense that socialist theory reveals the causes of the misery of the working class more profoundly and more correctly than any other theory, and for that reason the workers are able to assimilate it so easily, provided, however, this theory does not itself yield to spontaneity, provided it subordinates spontaneity to itself. (...) The working class spontaneously gravitates towards socialism; nevertheless, most widespread (and continuously and diversely revived) bourgeois ideology spontaneously imposes itself upon the working class to a still greater degree" (What is to be done, Note of the chapter Bowing to Spontaneity).


During our debate and our battle against councilism in the years 1980, our organisation, the ICC, warned against the "danger of councilism [which] - even though it fully manifests itself in the revolutionary events - is already a danger today [for] the weak revolutionary milieu" (International Review 40, The Danger of Councilism, 1985, translated from French by us).

It's on that occasion that our organisation have come to get rid of some of its councilist weaknesses linked with its beginnings in 1968. It's also during those years that our organisation had fully integrated the question of the vital of the proletarian political organisation, and had developed a whole understanding and a whole practice of "militant and fighting organisation" in the perspective of revolutionary confrontations and of the setting up of the world party of the proletariat.

Convergences with the councilist groups, escape in front of the political fight against the bourgeoisie's forces, under-estimation of the leading and political vanguard role of the communist organisations, fetishism of self-organisation, cult of spontaneity and tail endism, the today ICC liquidates not only the political lessons of our organisation, the experience and the tradition of the Communist Left, but also the struggle of marxism against anarchism and the Lenin's one against Economism. The irony of the story is that by liquidating more particularly the lessons of the years 1980 about the revolutionaries' intervention, about the responsibility of the Party and the role of class consciousness in the proletariat's revolutionary struggle, the ICC of the liquidation joins now the councilism of a group as Internationalist Perspectives 9 whose main members... had precisely left the ICC during that past struggle against councilism. At this level too, the affair is settled.

"The danger of councilism doesn't only lie among the deniers of the Party ; it even can threat a revolutionary organisation as armed as is the ICC. It's even more dangerous that very often councilism doesn't dare claiming its name and it does hide behind a formal recognition of the programmatical and organisational centralised framework" (idem).

The councilism of the new ICC, the liquidators' ICC, becomes even more dangerous that it "doesn't dare claiming its name and it does hide behind a formal recognition of the programmatical and organisational centralised framework" of the true ICC and of the political continuity with the international Communist Left. Thus, question after question, position after position, piece after piece, principle after principle, our programmatical framework and our political and organisational experience are systematically and methodically dismantled, destroyed, liquidated. Only our fraction still defends them.

We'll be careful not to limit the danger of "hidden" councilism to the sole ICC of the liquidation. That it has taken possession of the weakest part of the proletarian camp today, of its opportunist right wing, doesn't mean that the other components of this camp are immunized. The appeal and the attraction of councilism is a permanent threat against the today communist organisations. The renouncement - the political one and not the psychological one - in front of the difficulties, the - political - fear in front of the confrontations of classes, in front of the political fight, the - political - hesitations and - political - pessimism in front of the role and the efficiency of the daily struggle of the communists and their organisations, the dispersal and the - political - doubts on the possibility and on the necessity of the political organisation, of the world Party of the proletariat, exert a permanent pressure against the whole proletarian camp and its communist militants.

"We think that councilism constitutes the greatest danger for the revolutionary milieu from today, and much more than substitutionism, it'll become a very great peril for the intervention of the Party in the future revolutionary struggles" (idem).

December 2006.


1. In our previous bulletin, we've shown it was precisely the case in regards with the question of class violence and also when this organisation calls the workers to solidarize "wtih the wounded CRS" (anti-demonstration police) and the students "to make their voice heard, to massively and quietly participate to the demonstration of Saturday 18th of March against precarious work and unemployement, against repression, against the attacks at the right of strike. The right of strike, the freedom of expression are rights of the 19th century working class struggles" (March 16th, ICC leaflet, we underline).

2. We refer our readers to our bulletin (see # 19 to 23 and the 28 about the incredible ICC leaflet questioning the workers who were in a "wildcat" strike about the usefulness of the strike whereas the whole bourgeoisie, unions at the head, was condemning it and was threatening the workers ; a real work of strikebreaker...).

3. We refer our readers to our bulletin 35 for reading, or re-reading, our statement on this struggle.

4. Beyond the "ultra-revolutionary, empty and resonant phraseology" (as Marx said against the Bakuninists) adopted by these Misters, we can rightfully wonder whether their "bold" is the proof of their crass ignorance of the workers movement history, or whether the sign of a petty-bourgeois craze.

5. These same Notes which inform us and salute the fact that "the Censier [University] General Assembly passed a motion «in support of the injured students, against any damage done to the building, and in sympathy for the injured CRS [the anti-riot police [since] the children of the low-paid CRS are themselves concerned by the attacks of the government"...

6. We could give much more other quotations going in the same direction. For instance : "For the ICC, it is clear that this movement of young people is frightening the ruling class. Monsieur de Villepin and his chums, on the right as well as the left, are afraid quite simply because the creativity of the students of Censier could give bad ideas to the whole of the working class. The silence of the media, then their falsification of events, their televised interviews mean only one thing: the bourgeoisie is shit-scared. And they are all the more scared because today, the most conscious students are at the forefront of the movement. It is this vanguard that the ruling class, with its cops and special branch, want to reduce to silence" (Public meeting in Paris, 11th March: debate on experiences and perspectives of the students' movement, ICC Introducing Text, ICC "on line"). Even better, in a March 23rd leaflet, the ICC underlined that "this movement of solidarity of the whole working class has aroused a deep anxiety ["inquiétude" in French] within the world bourgeoisie" (translated and underlined by us). Impressive, isn't it ?

7. The ICC members, themselves, have acknowledged it through the grizzling "reproach" they directed to the leftists at the 2006 "Fête de Lutte ouvrière" [the French trotskist group] according to which the "national coordination" didn't respect the decisions adopted by the assemblies.

8. The French version uses the word "loin" which means "far" in stead of "separate" which can appear less openly escaping the political confrontation with the bourgeois forces, unions and leftists.

9. There are other spheres where the ICC of the liquidators lately converges rapidly towards the ideological themes, non marxist, that groups which tend to councilism as Internationalist Perspectives, had been able to develop. Besides the Internationalist Declaration from Korea against the threat of war (see our bulletin 37 in English), the ICC shares more and more the statement and the method of Internationalist Perspectives and others to take up questions as solidarity, morality, etc... The difference is that it has been a long time since IP doesn't claim any more the ICC and that it criticizes openly and honestly its programmatical and organisational foundations.