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(en) anarkismo.net: Opinion Letter FAU - March by Uruguayan Anarchist Federation - fAu (ca, it) [machine translation]

Date Fri, 20 Apr 2018 09:50:18 +0300

Railway conflict ---- The railway conflict ended with a resounding victory for the reinstatement of 4 workers dismissed from the private sector, workers of Rail Logistics Services (SLF). A year ago, the Railway Union organized these workers who perform tasks in a public company of private law, a parastatal to which the AFE board has been transferring most of its activities, with the ultimate goal of dismantling AFE as a public company and carry out the operation of the railway by private companies. ---- Proof of this is the "ROU-UPM" agreement whereby it is agreed, among other things, that the Uruguayan State put the railways in conditions for UPM or a "railway operator" that it chooses, to operate them directly. That is to say, with public funds to leave everything soon so that it uses UPM. A pure and simple privatization, transferring public resources for private use and enjoyment.

Within this framework, both SLF and AFE and also the Ministry of Transport and Public Works (MTOP) attacked the union and a month-long hard conflict began, where the Peñarol Workshops and the Carnelli Station were occupied. They tried everything to discredit the union: they said that they were fired for having stolen ... but there was no evidence and therefore, these employers were cornered and they had no choice but to negotiate and recognize the workers' victory.

This struggle and triumph strengthens the Railway Union and is an important experience of solidarity, which shows that if a union plays a strong role in defending its rights and organization it has ample chances of winning. It was a victory, but the board of AFE and SLF continue harassing the workers and not recognizing what was signed in the Ministry of Labor. Therefore, this struggle continues in the day to day within the workshops and various departments of both companies.

But this conflict is also an important lesson to face the dismantling of public companies and all public things that the government is developing. This policy of privatization by parts, from going public to the public, can be confronted and defeated. A substantial part of this was to integrate the private workers on the union on an equal footing. Here is a clear example of the potentialities that exist for the struggle.

Irrigation Law
If we talk about privatizations, the Irrigation Law not only privatizes water for agricultural use - cattle, but also ignores the victory of the popular movement in the plebiscite in defense of water 2004. This victory was consecrated as "Constitutional Reform". Marketing by private, water for irrigation, is a first step to fully privatize water. This is one of the most atrocious measures that can be taken, since it is clearly neoliberal. The extreme consequence of it would be that the one who does not pay the water to the company, does not drink and therefore dies of thirst. Recall that these measures led in Cochabamba, Bolivia to the "war of water". The main multinational awarded the privatization was the company Bechtel, which had to withdraw after the massive protests.
In this context, the campaign in defense of water was created in Uruguay. And now they come back for the same ... We have to face this law, voted without public debate and without circulating information about it. Today it is about giving all the possible support to this campaign, joining the signatures and mobilizing for this issue that makes the use and management of resources, where the capital has its sights set.

The rural bourgeoisie claims ...
The "self-called" launched a move of the agricultural sectors outside the historical guilds of the sector (Association and Rural Federation). First there was talk of "cutting food supplies to Montevideo and the East", but then decibels declined and it was called to concentrate along the routes. A demonstration of strength was made on January 23 in Durazno. The speeches expressed there were anti-popular and reactionary. To "save the countryside" social policies should be cut and the salaries of rural workers lowered, one of the "burdens" that "weigh" on the landlords.
Rapidly joined their support various political sectors-party, mainly the parties of the right and UP. A vast support from the electoral political spectrum to the demands of the most reactionary sectors of the country not only mark the political agenda ahead of the 2019 elections, but also place rural entrepreneurship as a political actor and empower the voice of the ruling classes of the country.

Every time the agriculture is mobilized, there is great confusion. The crisis of the dairy and rice was discussed, as an example of the "crisis of agriculture". In this discourse social classes are invisible. Within the dairy producers there are family producers and others of an industrial nature. Most of the rice producers are latifundistas and they manage an important capital. The same can be said of other sectors.

The issue is that the discourse and the political initiative have the big producers, landowners, integrated group among others, by the large multinational companies of afforestation and soy. Therefore, small producers are behind, like "caboose" of the claim of the true owners of rural capital (land, machinery and investments).

The resignation of Tabaré Aguerre - rice producer - to the Ministry of Agriculture is a sign that the interests of class and the pressures of business associations play a strong role. It is not only that they criticize the government, but that they are demanding anti-people measures, redistributing wealth to the rich. Whether the FA does it in the government or the right. But this marks the interest of these sectors that the more rancid right returns to the government - because they represent, and so they feel, their political-ideological interests - and also signals the end of the "class alliance" that allowed it to govern the FA in this period. We reach this end once the prices of raw materials have fallen on the world market (meat and soy, mainly) and therefore, The profits of the rural agro-export bourgeoisie are falling. They pocketed millions since 2005 and want more, they want to keep their high profits by taking advantage of meager incomes and some lukewarm social policies that put patches in those sectors most affected by the country's structural economic-social situation, exacerbated by the industrial dismantling of the '90 and the crisis of 2002.

The rural guilds are still negotiating with the government for the moment, but it is precisely the sector of the "self-called" that wants to return to mobilization. As we said, this is an advance on the right and we have to stop it. Only popular mobilization can do it. If there is a willingness of various trade union organizations to go to Porto Alegre to support Lula (forgetting about class independence), will it not be possible to confront here in Uruguay with the right? Of course, for some, that confrontation is reserved to the electoral area every five years, but it has been the most rancid right that has taken the initiative and they have clear objectives.

But the right is not going to be stopped with messages on the networks and votes at the polls. You have to confront it in the street, with the organized people defending their interests and fighting for more conquests, placing the issue of property at the center of the debate, because it is property that gives power to these recalcitrants.

To stop this advance from the right, we must forge resistance and fight from below.

Do not forget...
The assassination of comrade Marcelo Silvera, murdered by a ram - a spokesman for the transport employers. A clear action of the extreme right that governs the disposition to all of the most reactionary sectors of society. Undoubtedly, a fact that can not be forgotten, and we must be vigilant ...
For the moment, the employers of the transport have given a signal placing Juan Salgado at the head of their employer entity. The freemasonry and right hand of President Vázquez at the head of one of the economic sectors that most affects the economy. Are they looking for perks, benefits, supports? In exchange for?

Venezuela and another attempt to invade the Empire. Brazil: milicos in the street
The shortage situation becomes increasingly complex in Venezuela. The large conglomerates of food such as Polar, together with various entities financed by CIA collateral organisms (as is well documented in several studies and articles) cause the shortage of basic products with the aim of "destabilizing" the social situation and generating the conditions to place a government similar to the interests of the US and the Venezuelan fascist right.
After the last elections, the own right grouped in the MUD has been divided and a part of it accepted the electoral result. The most recalcitrant part of the MUD maintains the plan of destabilization designed by the CIA, very similar to the one used to give the coup d'état in Chile in 1973.

In recent weeks, Rex Tillerson, the now former Secretary of the US Department of State and oil entrepreneur linked to Exxon, a friend of Vladimir Putin, toured several countries in South America, including Argentina, Peru and Colombia. the purpose of adjusting the siege on Venezuela. It achieved the commitment of the governments of those countries, especially that of Peru, to prevent the participation of Venezuela in the VIII Summit of the Americas on April 13 and 14. Peru (host country) did not invite the Venezuelan government and that generated tensions throughout the Andean region. Several countries in the area demand that the elections in Venezuela be postponed, but none was so active in rejecting the Temer coup, for example. To that group of countries Uruguay now joins, doing the errands to the empire, placing itself totally under its wing. It is the end of the "more independent" policy towards the US that had been suggested in the previous period. Vázquez and Nin Novoa have a direct line to Washington and Almagro.

On the other hand, maneuvers and attempts to deploy paramilitary forces in Venezuelan territory have been denounced. It seems that the plan is to invade Venezuela with the dramatic social consequences that this would have. The US is regaining control of its "backyard" and does not tolerate any government that does not follow its score. Even the Sandinista government of Nicaragua has suspended exports to Venezuela due to US pressures.

We see again after the "soft blows" or "parliamentarians" of Paraguay and Brazil, an attempt to increase military presence in the region, in order to maintain controlled areas of direct interest to the US, such as Venezuela, one of the largest oil reserves of the world. Above all, after the resounding failure of the imperial adventures in the Middle East.

These are more complex times for the peoples of the continent. The empire stomps and adjusts the tientos, does not want to lose ground and wants an effective and strong control of the populations and territories. He has his allies and they play strong too. In Brazil, the federal intervention in the State of Rio de Janeiro is a laboratory of what will come for the whole country, with a strong militarization of social life, where the only thing that the State proposes to provide to the poor is repression. The murder of Marielle Franco, councilor of PSOL and investigating the federal intervention in Rio, as well as, had denounced several times the repression and police action in the favelas, it is a clear proof of the state of militarization that is being imposed in Brazil for to destroy the rights of those below and impose a neoliberal model pure and simple.

They are times where all the reactionary advances. But in these times the popular struggle and proposals of a different society like the one that proclaims Anarchism and propagate in the daily militancy also advances. Our colleagues in the Brazilian Anarchist Coordination (CAB) have been developing an important militancy and therefore, the State has also targeted Anarchism as a "worrying factor" for their interests and those of capital.

Another stage opens in Latin America. In Uruguay, everything happens a little slower, but those winds are coming. They are complex times. Times in which we must face the right in the street, in the work and study centers, in the countryside, in all places where the construction of a different society is played. The piola is tensing ... We must tighten the popular organization at all levels because these times demand to increase the levels of struggle and organization.


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