- Created: Tuesday, 18 December 2018 11:16
- Written by Séamus Padraic
Since Saturday 17 November, hundreds of thousands of people across France have taken part in anti-government protests. The protestors have dubbed themselves the ‘gilets jaunes’, after the hi-vis jackets that French motorists are required by law to carry in their cars. The spark was a planned rise in fuel duty (TICPE) on both petrol and diesel, but many demonstrators are airing much broader complaints against the government of Emmanuel Macron, who they call ‘president of the rich’. Cross-class and organised through social media, the movement contains many different and contradictory political elements, ranging from racists protesting the presence of Muslims in Europe to anti-racist students fighting against rises in tuition fees for migrants. Socialists must participate, and relate to the progressive elements, in order to forge an independent, working class way forward. SEAMUS PADRAIC reports.