Week in Struggle: February 11-17

India

Throughout the past several weeks, the People’s Liberation Guerrilla Army (PLGA) under the leadership of the Communist Party of India (Maoist) [CPI (Maoist)] has been organizing an election boycott of the upcoming panchayat (village) elections in Odisha, in Eastern India. On February 2, suspected CPI (Maoist) militants set up banners in the Bargarh District, which reportedly read, “Villagers should expose the false promises made by capitalistic leaders and question them.” On February 5, suspected militants in the Kalahandi District hung additional banners calling for a boycott. On February 8, suspected militants set roadwork equipment on fire in the Kandhamal District and left posters at the site calling on the people to boycott the elections, fight to end the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) camps, and demand adequate wages.

The CRPF camps are a now-common strategy of the reactionary Indian State as part of their counterrevolutionary program, which includes the latest Operation ‘Prahaar.’ These camps are constructed in “Maoist affected areas” and local peasants are forcibly relocated from their villages into the “security” of these camps. Failure to relocate means becoming a target of the State. Targeted people are often killed in ‘fake encounters’ in which state forces kill them and claim they are guerrillas in order to promote the image that the PLGA is weak and the State is defeating the People’s War. Activists across India have continually demanded an end to the camps and encounters for decades.

Several more actions were carried out by the PLGA in other parts of the country. On February 4, suspected militants burned roadwork vehicles in Bijapur District of Chhattisgarh. On February 11, suspected militants threatened a bridge engineer in Bijapur District to cease work immediately. Bridge projects like these mainly serve the reactionary Indian State, as they provide easier access for state forces to enter and to push the people off their lands. On February 12, suspected militants carried out an attack on CRPF officers in Bijapur District which killed one officer and injured another.

Brazil

Earlier this month, a banner was documented in Brazil, which read, “Eternal honor and glory to Chairman Gonzalo!” The action is part of the ongoing international campaign to defend the leadership of Chairman Gonzalo and his all-powerful Thought after his assassination at the hands of the Peruvian State in 2021.

In Rio de Janeiro, thousands of people protested on February 5 demanding justice for Moïse Mugenyi Kabagambe, who was murdered by men withholding wages from him. Protesters, including Kabagambe’s family, demanded justice for the entire Congolese immigrant community, which suffers poor working conditions, unemployment, racism, xenophobia, and violence. The Rio de Janeiro Support Committee for revolutionary newspaper A Nova Democracia (AND) attended and gave speeches about the class character of the crime, pointing out that the main motivation was economic and that such labor relations have their origin in the semi-feudal mode of production that exists in Brazil. At the protest, politicians were seen shaking police officers’s hands at the protest. The activists also unmasked opportunists who try to stop the people’s anger and divert their energy to electoral and reformist ends.

On February 11, in front of a family clinic in São Cristóvão, healthcare workers and clients protested for better working conditions, higher wages, and public, free, and quality healthcare. The Class-Conscious Movement in Defense of People’s Health (Moclaspo, Movimento Classista em Defesa da Saúde do Povo) participated in the protest. Demonstrators displayed banners and posters reading, “Mayor: the health of families in South Cristóvão should not be worth less!” The workers denounce that Mayor Eduardo Paes turned health into a commodity and tried to exchange health for votes. Healthcare professionals who work in the neighborhoods of São Cristóvão, Benfica, Caju, Estácio, and Mangueira are paid less than their colleagues who work in other neighborhoods. Demonstrators shouted, “We fight every day, because health is not merchandise! Healthcare is mine, it’s yours too, come to the street!”

The Revolutionary Youth League (LJR, Liga da Juventude Revolucionária) distributed AND in Jacarezinho, in northern Rio near the international airport, on February 11, one day after a combative uprising at that location. The people of Jacarezinho protested the murder of José Carlos Sordeiro Lourenco, who was killed while unarmed in front of his mother. The local population raised flaming barricades and confronted armored vehicles of the military police with sticks, stones, and firecrackers. The next day, activists distributed about 100 copies of AND, as well as copies of other democratic newspapers, such as the student newspaper Estudantes do Povo. The activists denounced the farce of the “Integrated City” program, which is responsible for the large police presence, leading to countless crimes against the people including murder, and explained that the uprising was good and justified, affirming that the only way to win rights from the reactionary Brazilian State is by engaging in combative struggle, organizing more, and making revolution.

On February 12, about 500 students, parents, teachers, and supporters took to the streets of Rio de Janeiro, demanding the immediate return to only in-person classes at Colégio Pedro II (CPII) and other federal public educational institutions under the purview of the Ministry of Education (MEC). The demonstration was against attacks on public education that seek to implement privatization and cut public programs. Protesters chanted slogans including “In the streets, in the squares, who said [the student protests] disappeared? The student movement is here!” “Where is my class, Oscar [dean of the college]? The students want to study” and “Oscar Halac, pay attention! Your home will become an occupied house!” The Popular Revolutionary Student Movement (Movimento Estudantil Popular Revolucionário) was present, and left a signed banner that read, “Military government: Enemy of education! It’s right to rebel!”

Mexico

Last week, Current of the People-Red Sun (CP-Sol Rojo, Corriente del Pueblo Sol Rojo) held an assembly to plan out actions for March against high electricity rates. The demands include: Wipe the slate debts clean; make electric energy a universal right; and re-nationalize the electric industry without giving severance to companies. On top of their high rates, these companies are resisted by the people as imperialist electric companies in the Tehuantepec Isthmus build wind energy megaprojects that displace and dominate the indigenous people and poor peasants in the area.

On February 16, CP-Sol Rojo signed a joint statement condemning the eviction of indigenous Nahua people from Altepelmecalli, in the Cholulteca region of Puebla. Altepelmecalli used to be a Bonafont water bottling plant owned by imperialist corporation Danone. The plant left the surrounding towns without a water supply, and in August 2021 people took over the plant and turned it into a facility for community health, education, communication, and agricultural, and livestock cooperatives. The statement denounces the violation of peoples’ self-determination and demands the withdrawal of the State’s armed forces from Altepelmecalli, calling on other organizations, the media, and activists to spread this call.

Chile

The Commission to Constitute a Committee of Seasonal Workers in Struggle, in Curicó province, published a statement on February 10 outlining the need to organize seasonal workers to fight for better hours, wages, and basic safety practices. For seasonal workers, safety equipment and drinking water are often not provided, and bathrooms are not clean and in poor condition. Transportation to the field is unsafe, and multiple fatal accidents have occurred just this season. The statement also points out that Chilean legislation itself is tied to semi-feudalism, as employers can pay not only with money but also with ‘royalties’—that is, providing security around land, permission to cut trees on land, housing, etc.

Europe

In Ludwigsburg, in southwest Germany, activists gathered to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the TKP/ML. Activists also commemorated martyrs of the TKP/ML. The artist Ali Çiçek sang hymns he composed for the martyrs of the revolution at the event.

In Liège, the third-most populous urban area in Belgiuma commemoration for the 50th anniversary of the founding of the TKP/ML began with a minute’s silence and then an opening speech that stressed the need for revolutionary violence, followed by a film screening and music performances.

Three events took place in Austria to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the TKP/ML. In Innsbruck, attendees sang, read poems, gave speeches, and showed a film. The event was concluded with organizers reading a message from captured fighters of the closed Gebze women’s prison.

In Wörgl, an organizer addressed the crowd, “Our martyrs, who are the building block of the 50-year practice of uninterrupted struggle, contribute to the fact that we resolutely and loudly commemorate the revolutionaries. We protect and remember those who led the way in our 50-year struggle, those who unhesitatingly sacrificed their lives, every moment, every minute at the most extraordinary point of our struggle.”

In Neunkirchen, after the speeches and a film screening, Aydın Şafak performed songs and read poems.

Galicia

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of Turkey/Marxist-Leninist (TKP/ML), revolutionaries put up posters with the slogan “Long live the People’s War in Turkey!”

Greece

On January 29, a banner commemorating the 50th anniversary of the TKP/ML was seen in Athens, Greece. The banner read, “Glory to our immortal comrades who raise high our red flag to the 50th year of our struggle!”

France

Revolutionaries from both Turkey and France in Paris commemorated the 50th anniversary of the founding of the TKP/ML. Attendees gave speeches and held a film screening in memory of the martyrs of the People’s War in Turkey.

Revolutionaries in Toulouse, Lyon, Montpelier, and Grenoble continued promoting the boycott of the 2022 French elections. They displayed slogans such as “Elections, no! Revolution, yes!” and “Down with the 2022 electoral masquerade!” on posters, and distributed thousands of flyers describing the importance of the electoral boycott.

Activists from the Revolutionary Youth League tabled in Villeneuve, a commune in the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence department in southeastern France, and held a study session in Toulouse, discussing the boycott of the 2022 French elections.

United States

This week, Tribune of the People Official Supporters in Kansas City, attended the “Without Us Strike,” a rally in support of women’s rights. The supporters spoke to attendees about International Working Women’s Day and Tribune.

In Charlotte, North Carolina, posters promoting Tribune’s Worker Correspondent column were documented. The poster calls on workers to become worker correspondents for Tribune. As correspondents, workers write about their struggles at the workplace in order to unite workers against their class enemies and fight for a new society.

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