Wave of demonstrations in Honduras

A brief statement by supporters of the International Marxist Tendency in Honduras, highlighting the growing militancy in the country and the need to build a genuine revolutionary leadership within the workers' and students' movement.

Read this article in Spanish.

Once more Honduras has been shaken by the impact of the class struggle, the last period being marked by a wave of strike action with the promise of more. This is one more symptom of the growing level of consciousness of the workers, and of the people in general, and all this has not happened by chance, or as isolated events, as the left reformists, who throw dust in the eyes of the workers, would like us to believe. They, in fact, act like a wet blanket on the movement.

It is important to mention the impact of significant mobilizations, such as the first national police strike, which was the prelude to a historic and militant march on May 1st and also of the entire movement that has been generated around the struggle of the public prosecutors. This was a movement that, although it was not started by the left and did not have a fully worked out revolutionary position, connected with the masses, who saw the public prosecutors' strike as a worthy and heroic act which openly denounced corruption in the country. It has now become a landmark in the struggle of the Honduran people, and has evolved into a platform of struggle, the Movimiento Amplio por la Dignidad Y la Justicia (The Broad Movement for Dignity and Justice), which we welcome and enthusiastically applaud.

Since then we have already witnessed a struggle of the students, that are traditionally characterised by their spontaneity, but have no leadership, thus leaving themselves open to attacks in the media and physical repression. The student movement is a very sensitive barometer of the class struggle, since it represent a movement from below. Unfortunately, it has essentially lost its initial revolutionary potential and the aspiration for change, while its fighting spirit has been reduced to a struggle around a couple of demands for student grants, accompanied by sticks and stones. This situation has been used by the bourgeois media to isolate the students and present them to the people simply as troublemakers. There have also been mobilisations by a historically combative sector, the schoolteachers' union, which can seriously affect classes at national level, and although it may be a trade union struggle it is clearly a militant revolutionary movement. Its drawback is that it is a partial struggle, it being shame that its leadership has entered into negotiations with the bourgeoisie. What we need is to fight for a revolutionary leadership, which would be a vital tool in the class struggle in Honduras.

On August 5th the third national police demonstration took place, with demands for a general increase in workers wages, no privatisations of public services and the reduction of the price of basic foods. Although the demands were not granted by the government, the march had its own momentum. It was more than enough to fill the gap between the prosecutors' hunger strike and now. After these events, the oligarchy had cried victory, discrediting the participants in the strike, thinking that they would be forgotten, ignoring the fact that the people still have to endure terrible standards of living and are suffering misery daily. They use the media to create an atmosphere of confusion among the Honduran people based on the veil of ignorance to which the people have been condemned by the ruling class.

Events appear to have been calculated in detail by the ruling class, and political opportunism is on the order of the day. The latest twist is that of the very "charismatic" bachelor president of the republic Manuel Zelaya, who has been characterised by his showing two faces to the people. On the one hand he has put up an appearance of rapprochement with the countries of Latin America undergoing revolutionary processes, while on the other hand Honduras has joined the ALBA, thus we see how this two-faced policy has increased. Why is this? The truth is that the ruling class will use all possible manoeuvres to deceive, divide and give false expectations to the masses. For while he does all this, the party he represents is from the traditionalist right wing, representing the economically dominant class. This party throughout its history - although to a lesser extent than the equally reactionary National Party - has been characterised by the politics of the "escape valve", putting forward for some progressive measures, in order to pacify the masses, or to prevent the Honduran left from consolidating its position... thus frustrating the revolutionary process. This has been the game they have played so far, and while many may be deceived by this trickery, the struggle ha snot been held back by these means.

Divisions within the movement are another threat to the process in Honduras. The working class does not need internal divisions. The struggle of the working class is the same: to fight against the oppressive capitalist system, which ties the worker to the factory and to the machines (running at an almost inhuman speed). It is the same system which can achieve major technological breakthroughs, but no progress for the majority of the population, only for a few privileged people. This is why the struggle against the capitalist system is gaining momentum on a daily basis. The people understand the meaning of years of resistance. The slogans raised during struggle are engraved permanently on the consciousness of the working class. At the moment the level of struggle is that of each sector fighting for its particular interests while what is needed is a struggle for the interests of the working class as a whole. It is precisely the unity of all of the working class and of all these movements that is required. When each group fights for its own sectional interests it rarely achieves as much as a unified movement. In fact, the more generalised movement that has developed since the hunger strike reflects the growing understanding that when people are united there is nobody to stop them.

We defend the united front against the capitalist system, we advocate and fight shoulder to shoulder with the Honduran people, we propose the building of a militant trade union movement that educates its members in the history of repression of their own organisations. At the same time we advocate the setting up of Marxist study circles, to study the ideas of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Trotsky. We call for the student movement to rise to the occasion and for the building of a red revolutionary vanguard, built from the cream of the working class, that can lead the popular movement towards a clearer perspective. We call upon the students and working class people in general to fight boldly against the system of capitalist oppression and for a socialist alternative. We will succeed in building a revolutionary leadership on the basis of events that can change the course of history in Honduras and the world. That is why we invite you to join us in building the International Marxist Tendency in Honduras and the world.

Arise Honduran people!
Hasta La Victoria Siempre!
Workers of the world unite!