Tendance Coatesy

Left Socialist Blog

France: Success for Protests and Strikes on 5th of December against Pension Reform as Fight Continues.

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Pas moins de 270 000 personnes ont parcouru les grands boulevards parisiens, de la gare de l’Est à la place de la Nation. « Aujourd’hui dans la rue, demain on continue », ont scandé les manifestants. Julien Jaulin ; Nicolas Cleuet/AFP ; Lahcène Abib



Massif, historique, inouï, au moins inédit depuis près d’une décennie… À vrai dire, on ne sait plus quelle épithète coller à la mobilisation de ce jeudi contre la réforme des retraites, à l’appel de la CGT, FO, de la FSU, Solidaires, de l’Unef et l’UNL, rejoints par la CFE-CGC.

Massive, historic, unprecedented, unheard of for at least a decade…To tell the truth, who knows what word to use for the mobilisation against pension reform this Thursday, called for by the CGT, FO, (Union federations), the FSU (Teachers), UNEF (Students) and the UNL (secondary school students), joined by the CFE-CGC (‘cadres’, technicians, administrators and managers).

A strike that crippled public transport and closed schools across France entered a second day on Friday, with trade unions saying they planned to keep going until President Emmanuel Macron backs down from a planned reform of pensions.

The left-wing CGT union federation, celebrates the success of the protests and strikes.

Grève du 5 décembre : réussite générale !

The strike pits Macron, a 41-year-old former investment banker who came to power in 2017 on a promise to open up France‘s highly regulated economy, against powerful trade unions who say he is set on dismantling worker protections.

The outcome depends on who blinks first – the unions who risk losing public support if the disruption goes on for too long, or the government which fears voters could side with the unions and blame officials for the standoff.

Macron‘s government, along with many ordinary French citizens, have made plans to cope with the strike action through the weekend, but may take a different view on Monday, if the disruption extends into a second week.

Rail workers voted to extend their strike to Friday, while trade unions at the Paris bus and metro operator RATP said their walkout would continue until Monday. Other trade unionists were due to decide early on Friday how long they would keep up the strike.

Full reports in Le Monde: Grève du 5 décembre : cortèges massifs contre la « casse du système social », grèves reconduites… retour sur la journée de manifestations

Libération: Des dizaines de milliers de personnes défilent dans la capitale contre le projet de réforme des retraites du gouvernement. Mais la colère, plus large encore, s’adresse aussi à «Macron et son monde».

There were violent clashes:



The sovereigntists tried to join in.

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Paris: Frexit supporters of the  l’Union populaire républicaine (UPR) prevented from joining march by left-wing trade unionists of SUD.

Mélénchon sounding a dud note, welcomes Marine Le Pen’s backing….

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Whether this was cynical effort to win over RN voters, or clumsiness, it has not been widely welcomed.

Mélenchon et «l’humanisme» de Le Pen : cynisme ou maladresse ?

The radical left sees this as the beginning of a wider struggle;


Written by Andrew Coates

December 6, 2019 at 12:12 pm

One Response

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  1. With the imagery of looter hordes setting things alight while amok berserkers dash about stabbing folks and running them down with vehicles, I shouldn’t be surprised to see immigrants in America booking passage for Europe to get in on some of the wonderfulness of it all. Too many people don’t know what they’re missing out on.


    December 6, 2019 at 7:38 pm

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