The announcement of 2,900 job cuts by Air France management fell like a thunderbolt on employees. Over the past decade they have already made many sacrifices in terms of pay and working conditions. Many positions have already been cut: the company's workforce decreased from 65,000 in 2004 to 52,500 today. The frustrations of many employees  have now started to bubble over, as shown in the video below.

Muslims in France were the first "collateral victims" of the killings of last January 7-9 in Paris. Anti-muslim propaganda has been a constant theme in the media and in the political discourse in France. Of course by attacking the Muslims they really mean Africans who are the real objective of their attacks. But since the January events, media sensationalism and racist acts have skyrocketed. These constant attacks against one section of the workers of our country must be challenged by the entire labour movement.

Over the weekend several million people took part in demonstrations in Paris and many provincial cities of France. The government and the whole official establishment had called for the demonstrations and announced their participation. On Sunday evening, Prime Minister Manuel Valls, declared that the people had rallied “behind President” François Hollande.

As I write these lines the drama in France has just been brought to a bloody climax ending in the death of the two men who killed the staff of Charlie Hebdo. This denouement was as inevitable as the ending of a Greek tragedy. There was no realistic prospect of any other. Three days of high drama that captured the attention of the world have ended with twenty dead, a further unknown number of wounded and a nation in a state of trauma.

The terrorist attack against the French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo has caused a huge wave of anger and indignation throughout the country. In the evening after the attack over a hundred thousand people took to the streets of many cities. The revulsion aroused amongst the masses by this brutal terrorist act has been exacerbated by the fact that many of the victims were very popular and held in high regard.

In the recent municipal elections in France the right wing did well, mainly at the expense of the Socialist Party which pays a heavy price for carrying out draconian austerity measures at national level. Unfortunately, in many towns the Front de Gauche (Left Front) split, with the Communist Party forming an alliance with the Socialist Party, and the Parti de Gauche (Left Party) presenting joint lists with the Greens.

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