Socialist Worker

France


France sees its biggest ever anti-capitalist protest

16 August 2003
AN ASTONISHING crowd converged on the Larzac plateau in southern France last weekend. It was the biggest anti-capitalist event we have ever seen in this country, far bigger than anyone had expected.

Vive la Revolution by Mark Steel

19 July 2003
Vive la Revolution by Mark Steel is a lively and witty history of the French Revolution. It is an accessible history which reclaims the 1789 revolution from the widely held idea that it was a period of terror, murder and mayhem. Steel celebrates the revolution as a time when masses of disenfranchised people played a part in radically changing the society in which they lived.

Start planning for these great events

19 July 2003
THE demonstrations against the G8 summit in Evian, France, a month ago showed that the anti-capitalist movement is alive and well. Around 100,000 people took part in the biggest protest, shattering the predictions of some critics. They had said just a few tens of thousands would turn up.

Etre et Avoir : an unsentimental education

19 July 2003
The film Etre et Avoir (To Be and To Have) should be required watching for all New Labour politicians. It might enlighten those who believe education can be reduced to a barracks regime of testing designed to fit young people for the needs of employers. Etre et Avoir follows in great detail the life of a real school in the French countryside. The school is tiny so there are children from four years old to ten in a single classroom.

Rank and file took the lead in France

12 July 2003
THE STRIKES in France during May and June were amazing. Some people have compared them to the public sector workers' strikes of December 1995. In many ways they were better. On 13 May, for example, there were at least eight million on strike.

Leaders' fear of effective strikes

05 July 2003
ONE OF the most well-known figureheads of the global movement against corporate power was thrown in jail in France last week. José Bové, leader of the radical farmers' Conféderation Paysanne, faces ten months inside.

The wrong strategy in French pension strikes

21 June 2003
FRENCH TRADE union leaders may have allowed their Tory government to survive the mass protests over its attack on workers' pension rights. There were two more days of strikes and demonstrations involving hundreds of thousands of workers last week, and more protests were planned this week. But they were not on the scale of the earlier strikes that repeatedly paralysed the country in recent weeks.

Crunch time for pension strikers

14 June 2003
THE TRIAL of strength between French workers and their Tory government reached a decisive stage on Tuesday. The government pressed ahead with its attacks on workers' pension rights, presenting its plans in the country's National Assembly.

Can strikes shake Tory government in France?

07 June 2003
TUESDAY SAW another huge show of strength by French workers in their fight with the country's Tory government. Strikers shut down much of the country. But the government was gambling on some union leaders now holding back from the all-out action which could bring workers victory.

Storm of protest descends on G8

07 June 2003
"TO THE eight who want to rule the world, the world replies - resistance!" The chant was in French, but taken up by people from a dozen or more European countries - and some from Africa, Asia and Latin America too.

France - High stakes as fight over pensions grows

31 May 2003
THE STAKES are mounting in the battle over workers' pension rights in France. Sunday saw a new round of massive demonstrations against the Tory government's plan to force workers to work more years, and pay more, for poorer pensions. Around 600,000 people marched in Paris, with tens of thousands more marching in cities across the country.

A killer comes to Europe

31 May 2003
GEORGE BUSH, the butcher of Iraq, is arriving in Europe this weekend. He is flying into Evian in France to meet with his fellow leaders of the "G8" richest industrial countries. He comes determined to hammer home his victory in Iraq - even though every day there are reports of more deaths and killings in the country he claims to have liberated.

Two thugs aren't better than one

31 May 2003
ONE OF the biggest talking points of the past few months has concerned where the war on Iraq leaves relations between Europe and the US. Many people on the left have been speculating that the European Union (EU) can, under French and German leadership, emerge as a counterweight to the US.

Pension fight rattles Tories

24 May 2003
THE BATTLE to defend workers' pension rights in France is at a critical stage this week. The Tory government has been rattled by last week's strikes and demonstrations. Up to two million workers joined marches across the country and many more walked out of work.

Empty promises leave millions enslaved by debt

24 May 2003
PROTESTS AGAINST the G8 summit of the world's most powerful countries in Evian, France, will begin next week. George Bush will be jetting in for the summit, fresh from the slaughter in Iraq. Evian is not just a chance to protest to demonstrate against the warmongers. It brings together the people who impose brutal capitalist polices across the globe.

Defiant strike sweeps France

17 May 2003
FRANCE GROUND to a halt on Tuesday. Trains, buses and tubes stayed in their depots, planes in their hangars as workers walked out across the country.

Back Evian protests

10 May 2003
THE WORLD'S number one war criminal is set to face huge protests when he comes to Europe at the end of this month. George Bush is to attend the G8 summit of "world leaders" in the town of Evian, in France. Protesters will be travelling from across Europe to greet him.

Evian - we will, we will rock you!

03 May 2003
GEORGE BUSH is coming to Europe on Sunday 1 June. Thousands of anti-war and anti-capitalist protesters plan to give him the welcome he deserves. Bush will be at a meeting of the G8 grouping of world leaders in Evian near the French-Swiss border. The G8 meeting is a major opportunity to protest against the chief warmongers - Bush and Blair - and their occupation of Iraq.

A chance to spit at Bush

26 April 2003
THREE CHEERS for the protesters who gave Tony Blair and the other pro-war prime ministers such a hot time when they visited Athens for the European Union summit last week. At the beginning of June George Bush will attend the Group of Eight (G8) meeting in the French city of Evian, just over the border from Geneva in Switzerland.

Division at the heart of system

19 April 2003
THERE WERE two major summit meetings last week. The first, highly publicised here, was the meeting of George W Bush and Tony Blair in Northern Ireland. The other brought together the French and Russian presidents - Jacques Chirac and Vladimir Putin - with the German chancellor, Gerhard Schröder, in St Petersburg, Russia.

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