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Newsletter (in English)


Report from the Luxemburg-Liebknecht-Lenin-Weekend-2010 of the Revolutionary Internationalist Organization (RIO)

This year’s Luxemburg-Liebknecht-Lenin demonstration on January 10 in Berlin was marked by snowstorms and freezing temperatures. But our “LLL-Weekend”, held on the Saturday before the demonstration, was a surprising success. At the seminar about the left in Europe, just over 50 people – from Berlin, Dresden, Kiel, Rostock, Hamburg, Essen, Saarbrücken, Witten, Zurich, Prague, Liberec and Paris – participated in the discussion, and at the class war hip-hop concert afterwards there were more than 100 people.

The independent youth organization REVOLUTION had invited to the LLL-Weekend, but it was organized by the Revolutionary Internationalist Organization (RIO). An activist of RIO Zurich explained at the beginning of the seminar that there were both practical and theoretical reasons for our name change: We have come to the realization that a fully independent youth organization is not the best instrument in the fight for a revolutionary party of the working class today. In addition, we have begun to intervene politically amongst workers (for instance at the cafeteria of the Free University of Berlin or at a tram depot in Prague), so a youth name was no good.”

The seminar was centered on critical but also comradely debates within the Marxist left, of which there are, according to one RIO activist, “much too few”. So besides members of RIO from three countries, there were also activists from the Trotskyist Faction, the Socialist Workers Voice, Permanent Revolution, Socialist Fight, the SAV/CWI and the Left Party and its youth organization Solid – as well as a number of unorganized students and workers.

The first block was about the radical left in France in general and the New Anti-Capitalist Party (NPA) in particular. Stefan from Berlin RIO explained in a presentation why the NPA, despite its anti-capitalist name, does not have a program to destroy capitalism. Juan Chingo from the Trotskyist Faction (FT) in Paris, who himself is active in the NPA, added that the optimism from the founding of the NPA is over: although up to 11,000 people enrolled in the party at the beginning, by the end of 2009 only 4,500 members participated in internal elections about the party’s position on the regional elections.

In the second block, Jalava from RIO Kiel explained why we reject working within the Left Party. A long-term intervention by Marxists within reformist parties means that they dilute their program. In response, David Schulz from the SAV/CWI and the Left Party stated that through their work in the Left Party they have many opportunities that they would not have as an independent Marxist organization.

The seminar was an important sign that political debates within the revolutionary left are necessary and also possible without descending into hopeless polemics. “It was very interesting to debate with other revolutionaries about our relationship to the Left Party” said Thiess, a member of the SAV and Solid from Hamburg.

The LLL-Weekend was then continued in the Red Island, where Holger Burner performed his class war rap. With more than 100 people, the small bar was full to bursting: there was a lot of dancing, jumping, singing and chanting.

On Sunday, it was incredibly cold at the demonstration, but with 9,000 participants (according to the official count) also very full. RIO participated in a spontaneous “Trotskyist block” at the end of the demo with us, the SAS, the SAV (or parts of Solid), the FT and so on.

Overall, the LLL-Weekend of RIO was a great success. We were happy to introduce our new name to such a large audience. It is clear that our transition from a youth organization to a not-just-youth organization will be a difficult process. But we are beginning both with political interventions amongst workers and with more advanced programmatic work, as was shown by the seminar. We invite anyone who wants to participate in this work to discuss with us and struggle together with us.

by Wladek, RIO Berlin

One Response to “R-E-V-O-L-U-T-I-O-N – It’s clear, isn’t it?”

  1. wladek Says:

    also published here:

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