To have peace and fraternity, we must overthrow the capitalist dictatorship

Lutte Ouvrière workplace newsletter
May 13, 2024

Macron and his ministers keep saying “The Olympic Games must remain apolitical” while using the games for political ends. With the war in Ukraine as a pretext, they’ve excluded Russia and Belarus from the Olympics and banned Russia from Eurovision 2024.

Israel hasn’t been given the same treatment. The Israeli contestant for Eurovision 2024 was allowed to participate despite her country bombarding Rafah and starving Gazans.

This double standard isn’t just revolting. It’s a way for Western leaders to try and indoctrinate us: for them, whatever a regime does is fine as long as that regime is their ally.

Meanwhile, those who denounce the Israeli government’s crimes in Gaza are accused of antisemitism. In France, as in the U.S., those in power send the police to dislodge students who occupy universities. Pro-Palestinian meetings are banned and activists are put on trial for terrorism apologia while a march through Paris of would-be Nazis was authorised last weekend.

The folklore surrounding the Olympics is destined to anaesthetize us and make us forget the brutal reality of a world run by those who defend capitalism. Macron even went so far as to call for “an Olympic truce”.

But there’s no truce for families surviving in the ruins of Gaza without food or water. There’s no truce for the hundreds of thousands of Russian and Ukrainian soldiers who have been killed, wounded or mutilated so that Western capitalists can snatch control of Ukraine from Russian oligarchs. There’s no truce for the working class of Haiti subjected to the rule of gangs who are thriving on the poverty created by imperialist domination.

And there’s never a truce for class struggle and the rule of money. Will the exploitation of cleaning ladies and garbage collectors stop during the Olympics? Will the workload for RATP1 personnel be reduced? On the contrary! For every one of them, it will be even harder. The government has already anticipated this by allowing companies with a surge in activity to cut out the weekly rest period and make the working day longer.

As for the construction, hotel and security giants who are going to be the biggest winners of these games, they’ll immediately rake in billions of euros.

Those in power talk brazenly of harmony and fraternity! But they’re defending a capitalist system based on the exploitation of labor power, the transformation of everything vital into profit and the constant struggle for control over raw materials and markets.

Their system breeds unemployment, a high cost of living and abject poverty so that the wealth of the big bourgeoisie can break record after record. It’s destroying the climate and the planet, driving millions of people into exile. And it causes wars everywhere.

The leaders of the imperialist powers and their vassals are already plunging humanity into barbarity in order to defend the interests of their privileged classes, at no matter what price. From Ukraine to the Republic of Congo, by way of Gaza and Yemen, massacres, death, rape, torture and famine are the daily lot of millions of women and men.

The same leaders are now driving us towards an even worse catastrophe. They’re stockpiling a military arsenal a thousand times more powerful than that of WWII, including nuclear weapons, and are methodically preparing the next widespread conflict, be it against China or Russia. And they’re using every opportunity to get us used to the idea.

Politicians, generals and high-up civil servants are ready to destroy everything so that the capitalists they serve can continually increase their profits. Until they are overthrown, there can be no fraternal society.

Leaders have no moral code, only: ‘Après moi, le déluge’!2 We experience this with every crisis – these irresponsible people are ready to pour oil on the fire if it means they can secure their own position and get rid of their opponents. There’s no way out unless we wrest power from them and that means a social revolution.

The only class capable of such a revolution is the working class that produces everything and on whom the whole of society depends. The workers must become aware once more that their class possesses an immense collective strength and is the most capable and legitimate to run society.

We need to assert this on June 9 by voting for the “Lutte ouvrière, the workers’ side” list.

Nathalie Arthaud

1RATP: the company that runs public transport in Paris.

2‘After me, comes the flood’: in other words, ‘Who cares what happens when I’m gone’.