BREXIT: The Scale of this Rejection should Lead to Radical Reform of the EU (Pierre Laurent)
51.9% of British citizens have just voted to leave the European Union. This is a new shock revealing the scale of popular rejection of the neoliberal EU. The time has come for radical reform of the EU, to build a Union of free, sovereign and associated peoples and nations, in favour of human progress and social justice. This new Union, and the new treaties it calls for, needs to be built under the European peoples’ control.
The repeated denial of this demand from the French European Constitution referendum of 2005 to the financial coup d’État against Greece, has led Europe into liberal fundamentalism and given wings to the far-right. David Cameron’s strategy and the agreement made with the European Commission targeting immigrant populations have released the most xenophobic forces in the United Kingdom. Even in his own political party, Cameron has fallen into his own trap. For the British popular classes, the change of government that is set to take place in the autumn, even more right wing, will mean more austerity, more submission to the markets and more tensions and racism in the society.
We refuse the false dilemma imposed by the partisans of austerity, between a slide into social crisis and authoritarianism, or dismemberment on the basis of nationalist rivalries. There is another option, that of the European project being taken back into hand by the left. A crucial struggle for all of our futures is taking place between the ultraliberal right of Boris Johnson, allied with the extreme right of Marine Le Pen, and the alliance of all left and progressive forces that refuse austerity. We look to Spain, where the results of Sunday’s general election may lead to a hope for the progressive camp. The French communists will stand more than ever alongside the peoples, and alongside the left of the United Kingdom and Ireland, in the complex and unstable period which is commencing. With our allies, we are tirelessly working for the construction of a Europe of social, economic and ecological development, which respects national sovereignties.
The presidential and legislative campaign for the French elections of 2017 needs to be the occasion for a vast popular debate on France’s policy in Europe. Nothing is to be expected from Holland and Sarkozy who have been the builders of the Europe of austerity. The question of political change to the left, in a great country like ours, is more than ever essential. The PCF now intends to contribute thereto, by building a common pact of undertakings containing a concrete and combative policy for a French government engaged in struggle on the European scene.
Pierre Laurent, National Secretary of the PCF (Parti Communiste Français), President of the EL (Party of the European Left)
Traduit par le camarade Stephen Chalk