French Left

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"France: one year after the riots" was an extremely good article (November SR).

There was not such coverage in France itself, apart from articles reiterating the lies about the supposed non-political nature of the revolt which reduced the participants to thugs.

Even the radical left papers were not as good as SR. Jim Wolfreys is right to highlight the enormous opportunities for the left in France, but also its political limits.

It is worth adding that new committees have mushroomed in France in the last six months. They are called "Réseau Education Sans Frontières" ("Education Without Borders Network") and are present everywhere in France, particularly in the suburbs.

They actively oppose the expulsions of the "sans papiers" families and students (immigrants made illegal by French laws). This network is composed of teachers, parents and young people all united in opposition to interior minister Nicolas Sarkozy's racist and repressive policies.

There is a connection between the opposition to neoliberalism and the opposition to racism. These struggles won't disappear and it is essential for the radical left to make them stronger.

So it is a shame that the different forces, involved in trying to find a united left candidate for next year's presidential election, are now going their different ways. The activist José Bové has withdrawn his candidature, and the Communist Party hasn't committed itself enough to appear as a serious opponent of neoliberalism.

In the absence of a united candidate LCR's Olivier Besancenot will be the person to support. Nevertheless, the French radical left must seriously try to relate to the different campaigns opposed to the neoliberal order.

Eric Bisoli
Paris