Workers' conference in Baghdad

Submitted by AWL on 1 April, 2005 - 6:20

The Federation of Workers’ Councils and Unions of Iraq (FWCUI) — a union federation in which the Worker-communist Party of Iraq is influential — is calling a workers’ conference in Baghdad on 2 April. In Britain, No Sweat has helped organise fundraising events to support this conference.

At the same time, however, FWCUI and WCPI leaders have launched an initiative called the Iraqi Freedom Congress (IFC), supposed to unite “all free-minded individuals, progressive organisations, and institutions worldwide” which share the aim of “establishing a free, secular, and non-ethnic government in Iraq”.

WCPI members have cited the African National Congress and its Congress Alliance in South Africa as a model for the IFC.

But the political authority of the Congress Alliance was used as a weapon against all moves for working-class forces in South Africa to organise independently, and conduct the struggle against apartheid in their own interests and in their own way.

The result of the success of the Congress Alliance in heading off moves in the 1980s towards the creation of an independent workers’ party was that the overthrow of apartheid, when it came, was in favour of a regime which has allowed some black capitalists to get rich but kept the mass of South Africa’s population in scarcely-changed poverty.

Such cross-class political alliances — as distinct from practical cooperation for particular actions at particular times — are a snare.

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