Facebook Instagram Twitter YouTube

Racist Offensive Tries to Silence Revolutionary Presidential Candidate Anasse Kazib

An invitation to revolutionary presidential candidate Anasse Kazib to speak at France’s most prestigious university tonight has provoked an extreme right-wing group to unleash a new series of racist, xenophobic attacks against the railway worker of Moroccan descent.

Scott Cooper

February 9, 2022
Facebook Twitter Share

The Sorbonne, founded in 1150, is France’s most famous university. To many French people, it is a symbol of France’s tremendous intellectual contributions to the world. And now, to the racists of the country’s ultra-nationalist far Right, it has become a battleground in their xenophobic fight against the working class and people of color.

Tonight, Anasse Kazib — the revolutionary Trotskyist railroad worker and candidate for the French presidency — will address a meeting in one of the Sorbonne auditoriums. In the runup to the assembly, the simple fact of his presence has sparked a racist right-wing backlash with threats of violence. Kazib, born in France, is of Moroccan descent, and has built his campaign around defense of the interests of the French working class and France’s large immigrant community, which confronts daily attacks and discrimination. He stands for justice for Adama Traoré and all the Black and Brown victims of French police violence and murder. He stands on the side of workers, the youth, the LGTBQ+ community, and all the oppressed throughout the country.

At the forefront of these latest attacks against Kazib — there have been many others before this, as Left Voice has reported — is the group Natifs (Natives), which is the new name of a far Right group known as Génération identitaire (Identitarian Generation) that was so brazen in its anti-immigrant militancy and religious hatred that the Macron government, when it began to morph into a militia formation, forced it to dissolve in March 2021. The French government prefers not to share the work of its repressive forces — what Lenin called the “special bodies of armed men” — with an irregular militia it cannot control. 

But the newly reconstituted group could not sit still. The thought of a candidate like Kazib, of immigrant stock, with a program advocating a government of workers and poor people, speaking at the venerable Sorbonne set its hair on fire. Natifs has set off a new round of racist, Islamophobic attacks against Kazib, Révolution Permanente (our sister publication in France), and supporters of his run for the presidency.

The posters Natifs has plastered around the Latin Quarter of Paris, where the Sorbonne is located, show Kazib’s picture and read: “0% French, 100% ‘woke,’ 100% Islamist.”

In France, the government has spent several years building an increasingly repressive security apparatus, and passing new laws, aimed at the immigrant community in the name of “anti-separatism” and fighting “Islamists.” These posters are not just aimed at pressuring the university to cancel Kazib’s talk. They are an invitation to violence.

Just last night, the spokesperson for Natifs issued a video on Twitter calling again for the meeting to be canceled and inviting a large mob to gather to shut it down.  

Poing Levé, the organization that invited Kazib to the Sorbonne, issued a statement condemning the far Right’s attempts at intimidation. It noted how the daily newspaper Le Figaro had “launched the cabal by opening its columns” to a “racist portrayal of the railway worker as the ‘anti-France’ candidate.” It pointed to “groups of thugs claiming to be Natives … in front of the Sorbonne: the far right in Paris is out.”

Kazib’s own posters announcing tonight’s meeting have a very different message: “Do you want a university that charges fees and that excludes precarious and undocumented foreign students?”

The anti-Kazib posters have backfired. The racist campaign by these far Right thugs generated a tremendous show of solidarity with Kazib, first at the Sorbonne itself among students and teachers. It spread quickly throughout the country, with the defense of the basic democratic right of Kazib to be heard — which came from political and public figures as well as everyday people — helping propel the hashtag #AnasseSorbonne to second place among the top-trending topics across the country on Twitter. The French Left was largely united in defending Kazib’s right to speak.

As the Poing Levé communication stated, the entire French bourgeoisie is promising a post-2022 of growing attacks on the working class and poor and and greater “security” repression. “In the context of deep polarization on the right … the presence of Anasse, a worker with an immigrant background, is a necessity.”

In response to the video by Natifs inviting racists to shut down the meeting by force, Kazib tweeted a video calling for a massive showing in defense of democratic rights. “The far Right will not decide which candidate has the right to speak!” he insisted. 

Solidarity with our comrade Anasse Kazib!

Facebook Twitter Share

Scott Cooper

Scott is a writer, editor, and longtime socialist activist who lives in the Boston area.


Tracking, Deportations, Internment: European Countries Go on the Hunt for Migrants

On May 10, German chancellor Olaf Scholz strengthened Germany’s anti-migrant policy. This means more deportations, border patrol reinforcements, and economic agreements with sending countries. The new policy is being deployed throughout Europe.

Leo Stella

May 25, 2023
People in Berlin demonstrating on the 75th anniversary of the Nakhba.

Berlin Police Attack Jews and Palestinians Commemorating the Nakba

On the 75th anniversary of the Nakba, the Berlin police banned all Palestinian demonstrations, and broke up a demonstration of Jewish Berliners in solidarity with Palestinians.

Nathaniel Flakin

May 22, 2023

In France, There is No Return to Normal for Macron

Anger of the French people at Macron's pension reform is far from extinguished, despite moves by the Inter-Union bureaucracy which weakened the movement.

Juan Chingo

May 20, 2023

The French Union Bureaucracy Tries to Bury the Movement Against the Pension Reform by Resuming “Social Dialogue”

After historic May 1st protests, the Inter-Union announced the following day that the next mobilization will take place on Tuesday, June 6. This distant date appears only to be conceived of as a way to pressure the National Assembly, which continues its strategy of defeat and prepares to bury the movement.

Nathan Erderof

May 12, 2023


This Pride Month, There is Hope In Fighting Back. Pride is in the Streets.

Pride is in the streets. It is the history of our community, it is the history of our struggle. Let us do them honor.

Ezra Brain

June 2, 2023
A rainbow display at the supermarket Target during Pride Month 2022.

Target Doesn’t Care about LGBTQ+ People

At Target and Anheuser-Busch, policies of inclusion and diversity have clashed with profit ambitions.

Pablo Herón

June 2, 2023
University of Michigan campus

Campus Cops Intimidate Grad Workers in Ann Arbor, Michigan

We publish here a statement by the Graduate Employees' Organization detailing and condemning the repressive tactics of the University of Michigan administration in response to the strength and resilience of striking grad workers.

Left Voice

June 1, 2023

#AllthatsLeftPod: Three Years Since the George Floyd Uprising:

In this episode of the podcast, we reflect on the 2020 George Floyd uprising, which began three years ago. We discuss how to turn the energy of a mass uprising into a sustained movement, and the kind of revolutionary leadership that's required to do so.

Left Voice

May 25, 2023