By Awais Qarni
Tens of thousands filled Argentina’s historic Plaza de Mayo on 11 December against the agreement that the county’s government is close to sealing with the IMF. The initial call for the mobilization was made by the Workers Left Front (FITU) and joined by over 100 organizations. The massive rally cast its shadow over the march the government itself held in the same plaza the previous day with a lower than expected turnout.
Left led unions, social movements of the unemployed, environmental, human rights, women’s, LGBT and ecological organizations and other political groups of the left filled into the plaza column after column. The MST and the Left Front had a prominent presence, and the international delegations that participated in the 1st World Congress of the International Socialist League and headed the MST’s column were highlighted in photographs that made all the country’s major newspapers and media outlets.
As MST leader Cele Fierro said in a speech at the event,
“yesterday they (the government) tried to convince us that they filled the plaza in defense of democracy and human rights. First, they did not fill the plaza. Second, they cannot say that they defend human rights if they have half of our people living in poverty. They cannot say that they defend human rights if they are attacking the rights conquered by the workers. They cannot say that they defend human rights if they are preparing to deal the people a devastating blow by sealing an agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Because never, never (don’t lie to us!) never has an agreement with the IMF been made, never has the debt been paid, without more austerity and more hunger being imposed on working people. That is why those of us who are confronting them are on this side, and they have to know that this is a first step in coordination with over 100 organizations, and that every time they try to advance against our rights we will be there to confront them. Today the strength of our MST comrades is here, but so is the strength of our comrades from around the world who also fight so that one day, once and for all, it be us, the workers, who prepare to govern and be owners of our destinies; to fight to the end for socialism, comrades. On with the struggle.”