April 26 2016
Tierra del Fuego: Chronicles of the tenacious struggle of the workers.
THE GROUP OF TENTS BESIEGING THE GOVERNORATE AND THE STRIKE THAT CARRIES ON FOR 56 DAYS NOW, WITH 23 UNIONS LEADING THE FIGHT, ARE THE SYMBOL OF THE RESPONSE OF THE WORKERS TO THE ATTACK OF THE BOSSES.
zsSince the anti-labor laws passed by the legislature of Tierra del Fuego and the Bertone Governorbecame public nearly two months ago life in cold Ushuaia and Río Grande Tierra del Fuego cities changed abruptly.
It is a declared war on workers, institutionalized with Law 1068, which legalizes gouging the State workers, forcing them to lose their historical conquests as not paying the profit tax on their wages, retiring with mobile 82% of their salary, etc. All with the aim of reducing State costs and increase revenues with the theft of part of the salary to workers, to ensure in this way to the transnational carmakers, oil companies, fishing and the great commercial bourgeoisie - who are the true owners of the economy southernmost continent- their millionaire business continuity.
Such an attack unleashed a widespread rebellion among State workers, supported by the poor people of Tierra del Fuego. Broke since the social peace between social classes, they now live daily a political fight, whose result is still uncertain.
The Governor and her Cabinet must now wander from one to the other luxurious hotels reserved for high-end international tourism, and are living under the protection of the repressive and murderous police. They cannot even appear by restaurants or centrally located business, because they are repudiated by the pickets of the combative state workers activism that rotates its presence in the tents that surround the governorate, from where the fight is organized.
The samesemi-secret life must be carried on by the hated bosses’legislators who voted anti-labor laws in the legislature. This makes me remember the days after the overthrow of anti-labor and reactionary government of De la Rua, at the end of 2001, when the hatred reigned of the exploited masses in Buenos Aires, and their battle cry was: "Every one of them must go away, not a single one should remain!"
Massive discounts, blackmail, threats, slander and attacks by the thugs of trucking bureaucracy, organized since the Kirchnerite/Macrista Government, have failed to break the Tierra del Fuego struggle, which is becoming a symbol of the resistance of all the Argentine working class.
Solidarity and brotherhood that exists in the activism that fights are exemplary and represent the best traditions of the world working class.
The workers share from a mate to a time of heating by the burning stoves to tears of indignation and anger at the injustices of the exploiting classes to everything at hand to withstand the low temperatures and the hard life that unfolds beside the frozen waters of the Beagle Channel and the snow covered mountains at the end of the world.
Activism, led mostly by women, comrade teachers of the SUTEF, is sworn daily not to go back up to achieving its goal: repealing the anti-labor laws. They know they are in a political tug of war, whose outcome will mark a before and an after, and then nothing will be the same.
With tears in their eyes, they affirm their readiness to endure everything and that despite the fact that in the rest of the country nobody is struggling as in Tierra del Fuego (though there are thousands of dismissals, suspensions and wage reductions everywhere because the Truce of the Trade Union Bureaucracy has been imposed) they will make their sacrifice to be respected. "We will give classes - they claim - from the same place of the struggle to show how the anti-labor government and its allies of the Kirchnerite governorates must be faced."
No one denies they have suffered bitter betrayals; because the Teamsters’ leaders who organized and led the eviction of the pickets that surrounded the gates of the storage Orion plant days ago, in 2013 were allies of the workers, so much so that last year 15 trucker leaders were convicted, while 17 comrades of the SUTEF also suffered the same sentences, by now in abeyance.
The leadership of ATE Rio Grande joined the traitors of UPCN and ATSA, signing a "social peace" and wage agreement last week, letting down from the fight in moments in which the Government most concentrated their forces to defeat the workers. After this, the Governor overturned legal personality to the majority of trade unions in strike.
And now the authorities are trying to appoint teacher strike-breakers in the schools, to break the fight. From the early hours of the morning, the activists are organizing to prevent this from happening.
Given this scenario of rising tension, from the tents of the fighters in downtown Ushuaia, the surge of fighting in Santa Cruz centered in Río Gallegosis celebrated; they bet trade unions claiming to be “working class champions” abandon their petty interests and help to unify the struggle, to concentrate the forces of all workers suffering the bosses’ attack and then put in place a National Coordination body for fighting to unify the struggle of the SUTEF and the other unions of Tierra del Fuego that are fighting, with the SISADOC (teaches union that is resisting from some months ago) in Santiago del Estero. Thus, Macri will earn what he deserves: A General strike.