Socialist Worker

Spanish protests show the way... Revolt against austerity

by Siân Ruddick
Issue No. 2253

The mass protests that have erupted across Spain against austerity and corruption are an inspiration to people fighting back everywhere.

Protesters occupied squares in towns and cities across Spain, taking inspiration from the Tunisian and Egyptian revolutions.

They are demanding jobs, housing, decent education and “real democracy now”.

Young people are at the centre of the struggle—as they suffer high rates of unemployment and attacks on education as a consequence of the government’s cost-cutting.

The ruling Socialist Party took a battering in elections last Sunday. And the protest camps remain, organising protests and meetings, and discussions about the way forward.

Workers have been involved too. In Barcelona, health workers, bus drivers, communication workers and firefighters organised in independent unions have taken part in the protests. They plan to march together with young people against the attacks this Friday.

Young people have played a crucial role in the growing

resistance to our rulers across the world.

In France in 2005, school and college students joined workers on the streets fighting for their pensions and against the appalling CPE employment law. They won.

In Greece, students and young people have made up big parts of the general strike demonstrations and have occupied their universities—turning them into organising centres of resistance.

In Britain, the student movement and the occupation of Tory HQ at Millbank last year changed the pace of the fightback against the government.

The movement blossomed, with protesters fighting brutal police attacks.

All these are connected.

In every country, the people fighting for a better world take inspiration from each other.

In Tunisia, Egypt, Syria, Libya and Yemen, young people are at the heart of the resistance to their rulers.

These struggles have been strongest where everyone being attacked unites to fight back.

The links being built in Spain between workers, unemployed people and students will be key to taking their movement forward.

In Britain, the planned strikes on 30 June that are set to see hundreds of thousands of workers walking out provides a huge opportunity to step up the pressure on our government.

We all have a role to play in bringing the spirit of Spain to the streets of Britain.

We need to fuel the flames of resistance to burn down the unjust system we live under.


Click here to subscribe to our daily morning email newsletter 'Breakfast in red'

Mobile users! Don't forget to add Socialist Worker to your home screen.