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(en) cnt nº 425 - DOSIER ¿Nueva normalidad? : Mahmoud Homsy, Secretary General of the CIT: "If you say you are a revolutionary, they wonder what planet you live on" Suso Garcia (ca) [machine translation]

Date Tue, 23 Mar 2021 10:28:28 +0200


During the Inaugural Congress of the ILC in 2018, held in Parma (Italy), the sections agreed that the General Secretariat of the ILC would have a duration of two years. At the same congress, it was decided that the German anarosindical FAU would become the next section, after the CNT, to take the baton from the General Secretariat. ---- ? The new secretary of the CIT, Mahmoud Homsy, is a member of FAU Berlin. He has been active in FAU's international work area for years and was part of the founding of the new international confederation ---- First of all, Mahmoud, thank you for taking your time for the readers of our confederal newspaper.
Question .- How do you face this new responsibility on a personal level?
Answer .- Knowing the long history of the International, I cannot be more than honored that I have been entrusted with this position, but I am truly overwhelmed. I already have many commitments not directly related to this secretariat and I see the infinity of tasks that I must attend to now if I want to carry out my commitments with the ILC as well as possible. I imagine that these nerves are normal in the face of so much responsibility.

Right now there are about 20 people actively helping the liaison committee and the secretariat, but this number will have to grow if we are to achieve the goals we set for ourselves.

Q. - Although the sections have been around for many years, the CIT is very recent. How do you find our International's health and what do you think are our organizational priorities today?
R.- Miguel, my predecessor, from the Madrid CNT, successfully laid the foundations for the development of the CIT. All communication channels are already in operation (the website, social networks), as well as finances (section fees) that are the economic base of our budgets. But there is still a lot to do before we can actually get down to business. The obvious priority is the implementation of the work areas adopted at the congress. Right now there are about 20 people actively helping the liaison committee and the secretariat, but this number will have to grow if we are to achieve the goals we set for ourselves.

Q. - Our approaches and our model are clearly different from those of official trade unionism. Is our model valid and effective? Do you think it will be well received by the workers?
R.- I can tell you more accurately what I see in Germany. It is very difficult for our union model to establish itself in a western country like Germany. There is so much privilege here. There is a lot of work because the financial markets invest in Germany, as it is considered to have a safe and stable economy and the social safety net is more or less intact. People think that the market and the state will take care of things. If you say you are a revolutionary, they wonder what planet you live on. If you complain about your poor quality work, they tell you that you are ungrateful or that you must work harder to get a better job. People wonder if unions in general are valid. So, in that environment, I sometimes wonder if our basic principles of solidarity, mutual aid,
These doubts in the end only reaffirm me in our ideas. The satisfaction of helping people speak out in conflict, the pleasure of collaborating with like-minded people, is priceless.
I cannot say if, in general, the workers will welcome our union model. I have experienced that we have been well received here and there by workers in the conflicts in which we have presented ourselves. I can only hope that you will remember all of this, believe in it, and practice it in the future.
But people are busy, their priorities change, they are frustrated by our ineffective structures, so they are no longer active. That is why it is important to strengthen our Organizations. Be effective.
Be that as it may, the truth is that we continue to fight and there is a clear growth of affiliates.

We have proposed to collect documentation on the union organization and industrial action of the sections, and use it to produce new training material, which is relevant worldwide.

Q. - At the international level, where do you expect there to be new sections that apply to join the CIT?
A. - The IWW in Europe will probably request to join the CIT in a short time (now the IWW of the USA and Canada are already doing so), and this will mean that, for example, in Germany, two different organizations may be part of the same International.
In Brazil, we expect FOB to be incorporated as well.
As part of our expansion strategy, which was one of the work areas adopted at the last congress, we have formed regional working groups for Asia and the Americas, which are reaching out and networking with different unions and union initiatives. We will see if in this way, we awaken the interest of any Organization to become a new member.
What I hope is that in the future more regional working groups of this type will be formed to expand these efforts to the Regions of the world where we do not have a presence ...

Q. - How do you think we can deepen the relationship with other alternative and revolutionary unions as the International grows numerically and implants itself in new countries.
R. - At the international level, I see that our principles of solidarity and mutual aid are good tools for the ILC to be known and respected.
In recent weeks we have joined the GWTUC campaign against Dragon Sweater, putting aside ideological differences, and we are offering our solidarity to our colleagues from countless places in the world. These activities will attract the attention of other unions who will see the CIT as a reference.
Another area of work that we adopted at the last congress and that will serve as a tool for expansion is training. We have proposed to collect documentation on the union organization and industrial action of the sections, and use it to produce new training material, which is relevant worldwide. If we can present this material to unions in different countries, it would be a great way to introduce them to our ideas and build relationships. However, there is still a lot of work to be done in this regard because let us not forget that we are a very recent Organization.
......

Q. - And some final words that you want to send to our militants ......
R. -I hope that all the comrades stay healthy for this autumn and winter! My thoughts are with all of you.

From the cnt we wish you much success in your task for the next two years.

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