Paper of the International Communist Party All issues Issue 14 July-August 2019
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The Communist Party
WHAT DISTINGUISHES OUR PARTY – The line running from Marx to Lenin to the foundation of the Third International and the birth of the Communist Party of Italy in Leghorn (Livorno) 1921, and from there to the struggle of the Italian Communist Left against the degeneration in Moscow and to the rejection of popular fronts and coalition of resistance groups – The tough work of restoring the revolutionary doctrine and the party organ, in contact with the working class, outside the realm of personal politics and electoralist manoevrings

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For the Class Union

 
 
 
 

     On Friday May 23 the ICP distribuited the following leaflet during a 24 hour strike of Italian Port Workers.
     This strike had been called by the regime unions (CIGL, CISL, UIL) for the new national collective agreement.
     We want to acknowledge the SI Cobas Port Workers in Naples who have joined the strike. Joining strikes, even those of the regime unions, is the correct position for them to take. The ICP belives rank and file unions, when the regime unions have support of the majority of workers in a company or in a sector, must join strikes organized by the regime unions. This way   rank and file unions get the opportunity to bring their message to workers mobilized by regime unions. And if they are able, they should distinguish themselves by organizing one more strike.
     So we have to say the SI Cobas acted correctly and joined the dockers strike.
     Unfortunately, the Port of Trieste USB union, which has significant membership, told its dockers to feel free to do what they want.
     USB leaders often encourage workers not to participate in strikes organized by regime unions. This is a behavior our party's union fraction fights constantly. Both inside the USB as well ad the wider union movement.
 

The Only Defense of Dock Workers is in the Unity of Working Class Struggle

To the Port Workers of Genoa,

The internal logic of capitalism pushes for the maximum exploitation of the labour force. International competition worsens working conditions in the various ports of the Mediterranean and Europe, as it does in every working class job.

While in past decades your strength inside the port was sufficient to defend you and to improve your conditions, for years this is no longer true.

It is increasingly evident, however, that the road of the "defense of the port", or even - as the statement of CGIL, CISL and UIL for today's strike - "Italian ports" will not lead to the defense of port workers but will endorse competition between ports, encouraging lower wages and increasingly higher work rates.

The only way to follow is that of the unity of the dockers between the different ports, both within Italy and across national borders.

In Genoa, a battle was won against working the cargo of war material bound for Saudi Arabia on the Merchant Ship Bahri Yanbu. This refusal followed similar struggles in the ports of Le Havre, France and Santander, Spain and shows that an international union of struggle is possible.

It is also necessary we need to go back to calling real strikes. Pickets need to block goods and fight scabs. Strikes also need to be open ended, not "timed", that is, without a duration established in advance, which almost never exceeds the single day.

Also dockers must join the rest of the working class, seeking unity of struggles across industries, which CGIL, CISL and UIL Union federations keep from happening.

At least six million other workers, not just dockers, are without a national collective agreement: metalworkers, railway workers, garbage collectors, public servants... Uniting the struggles of all these workers would express a strength far greater than a bunch of separate strikes.

What hinders this union, more than different industries and even national borders, besides the bosses and their State, are the regime unions in every country, which surrender working class interests to an alleged "common good". The "common good" being the interests of the company, of the port, of the national economy, that is, to the profits of the industrialists.

It is up to the most combative workers to take on this task. We need to break with the CGIL, CISL and UIL's trade unionism which for years has been signing off worse and worse collective agreements. We need to unite as workers in struggle and achieve full unity in class unionist actions, bringing together the opposition groups within the CGIL and the independent rank and file unions.

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