During the 31 July, 1, 2 and 3 August the Unification Congress of the IWU–FI (International Workers Unity – Fourth International) was held in Buenos Aires. After years of divisions we managed to take a step in unifying revolutionaries. The unity with the comrades of Lucha Internacionalista [Internationalist Fight] of the Spanish state, İşçi Demokrasisi Partisi [Workers Democracy Party] in Turkey, and Partido Obrero Socialista (Socialist Workers Party) of Mexico gives rise to a new IWU–FI, more strengthened, to support the struggles of the world and find more unity.
By Miguel Sorans
After more than two years of common work, of united international campaigns in support of the struggles, of political exchanges and mutual understanding, we managed to arrive at this successful unification congress. Represented were 14 countries of Latin America, Europe, USA and Australia. An extensive agenda was discussed on the world situation, the Palestinian resistance, the Syrian revolution, Europe, Venezuela, Argentina and tasks and campaigns to develop in the next period. When at the end the new leadership of the IWU–FI was unanimously chosen, the applause was emotional and delegates and guests rose amid chants. “We are Trotskyism, the Fourth International” was one that prevailed, in the midst of so much joy and excitement.
It was not for nothing. It had been four days of work, in the midst of which we did a great rally in support of the Palestinian people and for the unification of the IWU–FI (see following pages). Many comrades were participating for the first time in an internationalist rally of these characteristics. The congress unfolded amid the reunion of old and new comrades who continue the legacy left us by Nahuel Moreno. The presentations and discussions were made in different languages: Turkish, English, German, Portuguese and Spanish. With a team of translators who were very supportive. It is also noteworthy that many of the delegates were participating for the first time at a conference where the centre was unity and not divisions or factional fights.
We were brought together by the revolutions in North Africa and the Middle East
Having achieved this unity after years of isolation and crisis of our Morenist current as well as of the whole Trotskyist movement is very important because it may open a different trend. We know that this is still a small step. We reject any expression of self-proclamation and sectarianism. We know we are still far from the reconstruction of the Fourth International founded by Leon Trotsky in 1938. But we frame this unification in the strategic goal of seeking its reconstruction. We know that this must be the product of the progress in the construction of revolutionary parties in each country and of new unifications with other groups and revolutionary movements. We are open to it.
In this sense, we contributed our own experience. Our unity rested upon a principled political agreement. Firstly, about the most outstanding facts of the class struggle, as were the revolution in North Africa and the Middle East which began in Tunisia in 2011, in the support of the Syrian revolution against the dictator Al-Assad and of the Palestinian people. Secondly, facing the misconception of “Socialism of the XXI Century”, that the Chavist current heads, with its double discourse at the service of ruling against the working people.
These central agreements are not minor. Because, lamentably, we could not achieve them with other currents that claim to be revolutionary socialist. With these agreements, we achieved unity with a method of working and fraternal relations. We prioritize the discussion of the central themes of the struggles of the world and we discuss how to proceed. Thus we debate agreements and differences. We do not have all the problems solved, but we are confident that we can be, together, better able to respond to the new challenges of reality.
The new internationalist tasks
The IWU–FI leaves the unification congress strengthened. All our parties and groups intend to comply with the central objectives that the congress voted. The number one task for each of the sections is to intervene in the reality of their countries to promote the people and workers’ struggles and build the revolutionary party. Precisely the congress was held at a time when large demonstrations and rallies of solidarity with the Palestinian people are taking place, and also major labour, popular and youth struggles in the world. In all of them, the workers and youth are clamouring for new political and trade union alternatives against the capitalist governments and the union bureaucracy of all kind and colour.
The central task of IWU–FI is to help overcome this lack of revolutionary leadership. As we pointed in the joint call: “We reject reformism trying to make believe us believe that there is solution within capitalism, that it can be humanized. We join to continue to support more vigorously the struggles of the workers and peoples against imperialism and their governments [...] Today more than ever the choice is socialism or barbarism”. For this we shall continue to drive the building of revolutionary parties and an International open to new confluences to unite the revolutionaries.
Resolutions and main campaigns
- Support for the Palestinian people
- Support for the rebel Syrian people and against the death penalty in Egypt
- For non-payment of the debt
- For the reinstatement of dismissed Metro workers in Sao Paulo, Brazil
- Venezuela: for the reinstatement of labor leaders to their jobs
Before starting the congress an honorary chairmanship was elected. It was composed, first, by the heroic Palestinian people, together with the rebel Syrian people and all workers’ struggles of the world. By our founder, Nahuel Moreno. Tribute was also paid, adding them to the honorary chairmanship, to the martyrs of our current symbolized in “Tano” Zidda, “Hijitus” Mesa and “Toni” Moses, militants of Argentina’s PST killed 40 years ago by the Triple A in the massacre of Pacheco; Yolanda Gonzalez, militant of Spain’s PST killed in 1980 by fascists, and Richard Gallardo, Luis Hernández and Carlos Requena, labour leaders of our current killed in Aragua, Venezuela, by hired assassins.
Greetings to the Congress from Groupe Socialiste Internationaliste (GSI, France)
Paris, 29 July 2014
Comrades of the Unification Congress
The historical crisis of capitalism combined with the radicalization of the class struggle and the resistance of the workers and peoples capitalism offer us the opportunity to rise again in the heat of the struggles and revolutions, the necessary reconstruction of the Fourth International. [...] It is in this framework that we would like to greet the International Workers Unity–Fourth International (IWU–FI) to be born of this congress. We think— especially after having met them in Buenos Aires— that your new organization will be an important step towards resolving the crisis of leadership of the proletariat and the reconstruction of the Fourth
We share the method with which the IWU–FI intends to move towards unity of the revolutionaries, and it is in this perspective that we propose to deepen our relations, exchanges and common struggles. •
“Another step in the reconstruction of the Fourth International”
-Josep Lluis, Lucha Internacionalista, Spain
For Lucha Internationalista (LI) the Unification Congress with the IWU-FI concludes a period of isolation that we have walked beside the IDP of Turkey after our bureaucratic exclusion from the IWL–FI in 2008. With the Liaison Committee with IDP we tried to avoid a retreat in the internationalist construction of our organizations, this was where we found the IWU-FI. We have gone through three years until unification with a lively debate, and especially with a common work, in the heat of the revolutionary processes in North Africa and the Middle East, in the driving of a workers alternative to Chavez in Venezuela…
The brutal offensive of the Zionist state against Gaza has marked the congress. Israel has sown more death and destruction, but something has changed among Palestinians. We had the opportunity to participate in the events in Gaza on 1 May 2007 with a trade union delegation that we promoted to denounce the blockade. Seven years of suffocation and suffering also of demoralization have passed. But the comrades in Gaza tell us today that it is not enough to stop the bombing, they are determined to fight to break the blockade.
In a packed former cinema in Buenos Aires, the internationalist rally had the intervention of a militant worker from Gaza, which was emotionally followed and translated by a Syrian comrade. We also shouted slogans in solidarity with the Syrian revolution. We want an international organization serving the workers and peoples of the world who struggle against exploitation and oppression.
Along with the revolutions in North Africa and the Middle East, the rise in Latin America and the leap that Trotskyism could give in Argentina have been a feature. Polemizing with many currents that have renounced the Revolution, the Congress reasserts that this is our north and for this we need to build revolutionary parties in all countries and an International. Differences have been discussed with a frank and loyal attitude, aimed at deepening the theoretical debate. The conference was a breakthrough for the IWL–FI, engine in the reconstruction the Fourth International.