The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

We Must Be United!

Jan 17, 2022

The following is a speech given by Lita Dahomey at a rally in front of the government hall on the island Guadeloupe on January 4th. For weeks, workers in Guadeloupe, organized in a collective of unions and political organizations, have protested first the vaccination mandate, more recently the high cost of living. The text is translated from a video available on the Combat Ouvrière website.

Good evening to the large crowd out there!

The government has chosen force and repression rather than dialogue. But we know French colonialism, it seeks to scorn us, to humiliate us, before it will discuss with us. That is French colonialism.

In Algeria, further back, during the Algerian war, when confronting the fight for independence, they massacred the Algerian people. That is the true face of the French state.

We must also be careful not to fall into the trap of division that Macron has laid for us. If we allow ourselves to be divided, we walk right into the dead end where they want us. Whether we are vaccinated, or unvaccinated, let us unite, as one.

In this collective, neither comrades who are against, nor for masks, neither comrades who are unvaccinated, nor those who are vaccinated must think any less of the other. Whether one has no shots or three, there must be strong ties of comradery among all in the entire collective, united, otherwise we are playing Macron’s game. And if we do that, it is we who stand to lose, and we would allow Macron to climb upon our heads.

The real problem is a political problem, a real political problem. Because all the governments that have preceded Macron’s have had the same policy: to oversee the deterioration of the health care system. In France, they close hospitals, and create healthcare deserts. There are not enough personnel at our hospitals, not enough material—that is the policy of their government.

They use the unvaccinated as scapegoats, when it is their policy that does not allow us to save some Gaudeloupeans. The unvaccinated are not the real problem, the fault is not theirs.

We must think on that. What policy must we have? Let us continue our actions, maintain unity, insist on tolerance, in order to maximize our force, so that all personnel support the strike. And that the workers in the hospital mobilize to demand higher salaries, despite the fact that we face the police and armed men. With everything we’ve done, we’ve faced the armed forces mobilized against workers. That is the force mobilized by the bosses, because the armed forces protect the interests of the capitalists.

Good evening, the struggle continues!