Thursday, June 15, 2006

Chilean Students Walkout - Turn it into a General Strike!

by POI/FLT
Leaflet distributed by the Internationalist Workers' Party of Chile during the June 5th 'Walkout' of Secondary students all over Chile.
The POI is a section of the Leninist-Trotskyist Fraction


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Long live the June-5 general walkout of the Chilean students!
Long live the heroic struggle of the Chilean youth!
For free state education for everybody, and to win all the demands of the Chilean working people!


This struggle must win! The heroic student movement has already confronted the civil-military, "concertacionista”-“Pinochetista” regime, and the government of “Bushelet”. (1) She wanted to put the brakes on the powerful drive of the student movement by making small concessions, in the same way as the great strike of the subcontracted copper miners against the precarious nature of their jobs was sold-out. This trap of cosmetic changes in the law that adjusted their contracts was forced upon them by the actions of the union bureaucracy that heads the CUT (Central Union) and of the leaders of the Chilean Communist Party.

But Bachelet did not succeed with the rebellious student movement. Very wisely, the student movement rejected the crumbs Bachelet offered them because the minimal demand of the students is “Free and state-owned education at every level !” This demand has driven hundreds of thousands onto the streets, to occupy schools and universities, to confront bloody repression, and the government of “Bushelet” and the FTA! (2)

Now the splendid walkout that the students have staged on June 5th shows once more that we need to struggle for all of our demands. The student movement has the full authority to call on the Chilean working class and exploited to make an indefinite National General Strike to win all their demands. In each factory, in the pits of the mines, in each workplace, office, shopping mall of port, in each school and university college, in the organizations of the Mapuche Indians movement, in the poor peasants unions, a motion has to be presented and voted for:

NATIONAL GENERAL STRIKE, NOW!

For free state education at every level!(3) Down with privately owned education! Free entrance to University! The educational budget must be funded through taxing the big fortunes, refusing to pay the external debt and cutting 80% off the military budget that pays the “gurka” Chilean Armed Forces, lackeys of her the murderous Bush and Blair!

Enough of hostages packing the Pinochetista jails of the civil-military regime! Freedom now for the imprisoned fighting students, for the political prisoners of the Mapuche movement, for all the political prisoners!

As the Chilean students say, “Enough of skyrocketing copper while education is laying on the ground!”. (4) The struggle should be for the complete re-nationalization of copper under workers’ control, so that this immense wealth funds free education, workers’ health services, and bread, jobs, living wages for all working people!

The struggle for free and state owned education is the struggle of all the workers and people in Chile!

Down with the infamous contract laws of the slave-owner bosses and “Bushelet’s” government!
Equal pay and equal working conditions for equal work! Everybody should enjoy job-stability and the protection of collective bargaining aggreements!

The Mapuche Indians should be returned their ancestral land; land for the poor peasants!
For that, the big landowners and the imperialist corporations must be expropriated. Break with the FTA,! Chile must stop being another star in the US flag! Dissolve the murderous police of Pinochet-Bachelet! For self-defense worker-student committees!

FOR VICTORY NOW!

The heroic student movement has won in the streets, with their combat, all the authority to launch this call, now! Enough of union bureaucrats that sell-out the workers’ struggles and support the Pinochetista regime and President Bachelet , and prevent the workers from uniting with the students.

It is necessary to make a national congress of workers, students and peasants with delegates of the rank and file from all over Chile, to conquer the national general strike in order to get victory!

Today, dozens of unions will march along Santiago’s streets, in support of the students’ demand. After long weeks of unending students’ street fights, the union leadership can no more delay some kind of support nor extend their shameful silence about the Chilean youths struggle.

Because the immense majority of the Chilean workers and people see the demand of the fighting vanguard of the students as their own. But solidarity of the workers should be an effective one, it should become a single and united fight with that of their children, the fighting students, by attacking the property of the exploiters.

The interests and the property of the exploiters must be attacked, because it is they who support and benefit from the iniquitous fee paying regime that suffocates the Chilean youth. Only this will allow the heroic student struggle that has begun to be victorious.

The cry that echoes around Chile, together with the June-5 student walkout is:

For a NATIONAL GENERAL STRIKE against the regime and the government of the FTA, which starves the workers and the people and plunders the Chilean nation.

Long live the June-5 student walkout and the gigantic solidarity of workers and people, that the student movement has conquered in the streets!

The Chilean students today, by their splendid example of struggle,have earned their place in the vanguard of the fight against the Latin American regimes and governments that under the guise of “socialism” or “nationalism” are continuing to enforce wage slavery to the imperialist corporations and governments that plunder our peoples and nations.

That is why the Chilean students have joined all the workers and exploited of the world, side by side with the heroic French youth who confronted -and still do so - the murderous 5th Republic of the French imperialists. The struggle of the Chilean youth is the struggle of the entire working class of Latin America and the world.

June 5th, 2006.-
Partido Obrero Internacionalista (POI-CI) (Internationalist Worker Party-FI) of Chile
Re-published by the Fracción Leninista Trotskista (Leninist Trotskyist Fraction)
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