A political earthquake is the best way we can describe the federal elections that took place in Germany on Sunday, September 24. For the first time ever in post-war history an extreme right-wing party has been elected to the Bundestag (federal parliament). At the same time the parties that formed the “Grand Coalition” lead by Chancellor Angela Merkel since 2003 have suffered historic defeats.

This morning (Sunday, 24th September), there were mass rallies all over Catalonia. The one in Barcelona was attended by thousands of people. This is significant, because this weekend is the Mercè festivity, which is a very important holiday and one would not expect big demonstrations.

We publish here a statement of the International Marxist Tendency on the crisis in Spain. The Catalan independence referendum challenges Spanish 1978 regime. It has been met with heavy state repression on the part of the Spanish state. The IMT supports the Catalan people's right to self-determination. For a Catalan Socialist Republic as a spark for the Iberian revolution!

Yesterday morning  (Friday, 22nd September) thousands of students from the University of Barcelona, whose staff and students are staging an indefinite general strike, occupied the institution's historic building in the city centre in opposition to repression and in defence of the referendum.

Italy in the 1970s had two traditional mass parties of the working class, the Communist Party and the Socialist Party, but to their left were several sizeable ultra-left groups, with tens of thousands of members and a group of MPs. The question has to be asked: why did these groups fail to offer an alternative when the PCI leaders entered into a pact with the Christian Democracy in 1976 and supported an austerity programme? And why did they subsequently collapse?

Neighborhood defence committee

The situation in Catalonia keeps accelerating. This morning [yesterday, Thursday, September 21st], students and staff at the universities walked out and staged a rally attended by 5,000, and at many schools classes have been cancelled. University staff and student unions have declared for an indefinite general strike.

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