Facebook Instagram Twitter YouTube

The Yellow Vests Are Back on the Attack Throughout France

On the eighth consecutive Saturday of mobilization with demonstrations in several French cities, tens of thousands showed that the yellow vest movement is alive, despite the government’s repression and maneuvers.

Julien Anchaing

January 9, 2019
Facebook Twitter Share

On Saturday, the French government tried to domesticate the yellow vests’ movement by for the first time authorizing for them a protest route in Paris.

The government also prohibited their access to several places, such as the Champs Élysées, that had been centers of protests and confrontations with the police in the past marches. In response, the yellow vests challenged the prohibition, filled the unauthorized places with people and again faced the police in Paris and throughout the country. This time their war cry was “Paris standing, uprising!”

After the apparent Christmas calm, there were marches throughout France that brought together more than 100,000 people determined to retake the most radical actions that we saw at the end of 2018. The government was clearly surprised by the movement’s morale. Now, French President Emmanuel Macron has to deal with the fact that the government’s maneuver didn’t work.

On Saturday the police had to face the fearless resistance against repression in historic places such as the Latin Quarter and Boulevard Saint-Germain, where the yellow vests built barricades. It was in these places that the fiercest clashes with the police took place during the so-called French May in 1968.

636823075956416007w-6ec26.jpg

In the provinces many spontaneous actions broke out, such as in Troyes and Montpellier, where the yellow vests entered directly into the prefectures, symbols of police power, and in Avignon, where they entered the Supreme Court to protest the repression. In Bordeaux more than 10,000 people mobilized.

That spontaneity and morale, breaking with the official and legal march offered by the government restricted to certain parts of the city, reached the entrances of the National Assembly, where the police had to intervene urgently to block the protesters’ advance. It also appeared in places explicitly forbidden by the local prefecture as the Champs Élysées.

Also in Paris, some sectors of workers mobilized in solidarity with the yellow vests. In the capital, a contingent of nurses dressed in work clothes mobilized and took care of those injured by the repression.

Last Sunday a women’s march took place throughout the country, where the yellow vests who support the women’s struggle against gender violence participated in large numbers.

Saturday’s march recalls the first big marches of yellow vests and has surprised the Macron government, which bet on the movement’s attrition. Macron’s maneuver to criminalize the yellow vest protests, a maneuver that the judiciary supported, is already defeated.

The government tried to lean on the movement’s structural weaknesses, such as its lack of direction, and pushed to integrate the yellow vests into a “great national debate,” to which Macron referred in his New Year’s speech. But Saturday’s mobilizations showed that this governmental initiative has also been unsuccessful.

The tenacity of the yellow vests’ movement proves that throughout France, the specter of revolution is once again on the scene.

Facebook Twitter Share

Europe

Protesters march alongside a huge banner that reads Insurgiamos

The ‘Insorgiamo!’ Movement in Italy: Take Back a Factory, Organize a City, Fight for Everything

On Sunday, May 15, a national public assembly organized by the “Insorgiamo!” — “We are Rising up!” — movement will be held in Florence, Italy. The movement began with the struggle against a factory closure and the workers’ efforts to reopen it, and from there has taken up other social demands.

A New Phase of the War in Ukraine

Russia’s war in Ukraine has entered its third month. Putin’s failure to win a quick victory, while NATO-armed Ukraine resists but cannot defeat the Russian invasion, has led to a stalemate — one that is deepening the international character of the conflict and thus the risk of escalation.

Claudia Cinatti

May 2, 2022
French President Emmanuel Macron raises his fist in front of a crowd of supporters waving French flags.

Macron, the ‘President of the Rich,’ Reelected in France Amid Record Abstention

Emmanuel Macron has won a second term as president of France in an election marked by record abstention. As he prepares to continue his war against French social gains, the Far Right is consolidating its base in opposition to the failures of Macronism. Building a bloc of resistance is now more urgent than ever.

Damien Bernard

April 25, 2022

Thousands Take to the Streets in France against the Far Right, Many Reject Both Le Pen and Macron

More than 10,000 people demonstrated in Paris on April 16 against the Far Right. Students blamed the government for the Right’s rise, rejected a lesser-evil vote for Macron against Le Pen in the second round of voting on April 24, and called for preparing a “third social round” to protect the gains of the French people.

Mahdi Ali

April 20, 2022

MOST RECENT

The NRA Exists to Keep Weapons Profits Booming and Guns in the Hands of the State and Right Wing

The NRA is holding its annual convention just days after the Uvalde school shooting. The group exists to protect gun industry profits and the state’s monopoly on violence, and keep guns in the hands of right-wingers.

Ezra Brain

May 27, 2022

Reading Rosa Luxemburg’s ‘Junius Pamphlet’ in Times of War

While she was in prison in 1915, Rosa Luxemburg wrote an underground pamphlet titled The Crisis of German Social Democracy. As war rages in Europe, this text has many important insights for socialists.

Nathaniel Flakin

May 26, 2022

All That’s Left Podcast: Socialist Feminism and the Fight for Abortion Rights

In this episode, Tatiana Cozzarelli talks with New York abortion provider Angelique Saavedra to talk about the attacks on abortion rights and the way forward from a socialist feminist perspective.

Left Voice

May 26, 2022

Two Years After the George Floyd Uprising: A Changed Generation, An Unchanged System

George Floyd was murdered two years ago today. It set off a massive uprising that changed a generation.