The following is an international report on May Day 2019 from the comrades at Dem Volke Dienen.
In the following, we present a brief summary of dozens of actions, reports, images and videos taken from nearly all continents. The attempt was made to give a comprehensive overview, although there are certainly shortcomings. We express our salutations to all actions developed in service of the Proletarian World Revolution by our comrades throughout the world in their magnificent efforts for this 1st of May.
May Day in Sweden was marked by an obvious leap in the development of the revolutionary forces, which were able to unite a big contingent of participants in their own block at the demonstration in Stockholm behind a banner with the message: “Struggle against Imperialism – Long live proletarian internationalism”. During the manifestation slogans such as “Wave after Wave, Blow after Blow against imperialism and patriarchy we chanted and well received.
Maoists participated with detachments in the four cities of Kristiansand, Trondheim, Bergen and the capitol Oslo. However, the mobilization stretched even further than that, encompassing other cities as well, where posters and stickers were put up, leaflets distributed or paintings made. Different than in the years before, revolutionaries participated in the 1st of May demonstrations this year in joint blocks with other anti-imperialist forces – serving to unite the struggle of the Maoists with those of the peoples of the world against the yoke of imperialism – instead of marching as a separate contingent in the “Red Blocks” of the previous years. This, however, was complemented by manifestations later on the same day where dozens of hammer and sickle flags were shown, Maoist slogans being shouted, fallen comrades such as Comandante Gato being commemorated and the specially produced 1st of May Bulletin being distributed. Furthermore, calling to mind the imperialist Yankee aggression against the Venezuelan People, a Yankee Flag was burnt in at least one city.
Comrades in Finland have participated in the Mayday demonstration marching through the streets of Tempere mobilizing new forces under the Slogan “Combat and Resist”. Furthermore more an event was organized at the commemoration site erected at a mass grave of the Finnish Red Guards. According to the reports of the Finnish comrades, this year’s May Day activities signify an important step forward on the road the class struggle in Finland is taking.
In France, comrades participated in at least two demonstrations with their own contingents. In Paris, a combative, masked detachment of French Maoists joined with Turkish comrades raising the Flag of Partisan and the TIKKO in a common block under the slogan of the international boycott campaign: “Destroy the European Union – Boycott the elections”.
In Clermont-Ferrand comrades from C.A.R.A. and the Young Revolutionaries participated in the Mayday demonstration with their own banner, demanding freedom for the imprisoned comrades Téo and Tristan and for all the jailed Yellow Vests. Flying high the banner with the hammer and sickle in the first rows of the block of revolutionaries, smoke flares and the megaphone were used to draw attention to the block and comrades, through the megaphone, went on to agitate the masses.
Austrian revolutionaries took an active role in Mayday actions in the cities of Graz, Vienna, Linz, Innsbruck, Salzburg and Vorarlberg, not only participating in the various demonstrations in the respective cities – and whenever possible shoulder to shoulder with the revolutionaries from Turkey – but carrying out additional actions of agitation and propaganda. In these occasions, the revindicative struggle against the labor laws for 12 hour work days ways elevated to the question of reconstituting the Party. The hostility of the revisionists against the truly revolutionary forces, which manifested in Linz in an attempt to ban Maoist propaganda, was overcome by mobilizing the masses and closing the ranks with sympathetic forces, and so it became impossible to split the demonstration.
Proletarian Revolutionaries from the FRG participated in actions Bremen, Berlin, Hamburg and Freiburg. The situation in Freiburg and Bremen was marked by new initiatives resulting in a manifestation with decidedly proletarian character in a neighborhood of Freiburg on the eve of Mayday and in the first revolutionary, internationalist May Day demonstration in Bremen, which was attended by several hundred people mobilized to by a preparations committee. In Hamburg an internationalist block of more than 500 marched under the slogan “Proletarians of all countries unite!”, in fact uniting dozens of internationalist forces and carrying posters of fallen comrades from Mexico. In Berlin, comrades stood firm on their post and took the initiative when the masses and other participants of the demonstration started to confront the police, which was attempting to stop more than ten thousand protesters marching in an illegal demonstration.
According to reports published, activists of Proletari Communisti participated in demonstrations in Bergamo, Milan and Palermo with flags and banners and distributing newspapers to other participants. In at least one occasion, an info stand was erected presenting various propaganda materials in Italian.
This year’s May Day mobilization in the US was marked by the announced existence of the Committee to Reconstitute the Communist Party of the USA in the International May Day 2019 declaration as well as a massive mobilization campaign. Regarding the 1st of May itself, reports of two Maoist demonstrations have been published at the website of the comrades of Incendiary.
According to these, comrades in Los Angeles organized their own demonstration in a very militant fashion, answering the threatening gestures of the police – including the flybys of at least on police helicopter – by deploying smoke grenades and taking a stand against the displacement of the proletariat (by artificially turning a neighbors into a bourgeoisie arts district), by splattering buckets full of paint on several galleries and painting slogans. Even after 24 protesters were arrested, including the comrades reporting for Incendiary, the spirits of the comrades remained high as they sang the International, shouted slogans and mocked the police while being taken to the police stations. By now, all comrades are released. However, extending political (and material) aid for the “May Day 24” remains a paramount task.
In Austin, an unprecedented number of police was mobilized in an attempt to thwart this year’s Mayday demonstration called for by the Maoists in the City. The police went so far, as to commandeer a city bus in a failed attempt to blockade the road of the march. While chanting “Dare to struggle! Dare to win!”, this year’s central slogan of the international joint statement of Maoist Parties and organizations, demonstrators took to the streets despite all attempts made by the police, celebrating the 100 years of Communism in the US with a huge front banner, raising high the images of Marx, Engels, Lenin, Stalin, Chairman Mao and Chairman Gonzalo and agitating to multiply the efforts for reconstituting the Party. Furthermore, in the course of the demonstration one of two provoking fascists met the hard end of a flag pole, suffered serious head trauma and had to be transported to the hospital.
Comrades from Turkey participated in a very large amount of demonstrations abroad, such as in Athens, Paris, London, Innsbruck, Strasbourg, Stuttgart, Linz, Vienna, Ulm, Nuremberg, Wuppertal, Basel, Lausanne and Zurich, where they were in many cases the only Maoist and most combative force participating. Comrades from Partizan, the Partizan Youth Initiative / Marxist-Leninist-Maoist, the Purple-Red Collectives and AGEB mobilized in various forms to the demonstration. In Zurich for example, a slogan reading “Long Live People’s War – TKP/ML” with the hammer and sickle was draw on a wall adjacent to the demonstration’s route.
Apart from their show of strength abroad, the presence of revolutionaries was also felt in many places in the country itself of cause, where on Mayday mobilization focused on different places and manifestations. In Ankara for example, a combative expression was transmitted by the comrades participating under the banners of Partisan. In scuffles in an attempt to storm Taksim Square in Istanbul, also one revolutionary was reportedly abducted by the police and held for some days before again being released. In Izmir, comrades of Partizan and the New Democratic Youth of the revolutionary forces participated with a strong show of force in a demonstration numbering tens of thousands of participants.
In Chile two demonstrations took place, one organized by the traitorous and class-conciliatory CUT, the other by organizations of the working class, anti-imperialist forces and activists willing to fight for their demands. More than 20.000 participated in this demonstration, shouting slogans such as “We are no pacifists – Long live the anti-imperialist struggle”. Already during the greetings held in the beginning by the organizations of the demonstration, participants came under police attack, which attempted to intimidate prospective protesters even before the demonstration by arbitrary ID-checks and searches. However, the protesters remained combative, wounding 30 police personnel and thwarting their attempt to quell any 1st of May protest not as conciliatory as the old treacherous social-democratic cliques. Also on May Day, a manifestation of about a thousand workers organized by various trade union organizations took place, which rallied for the revindicative struggle on questions such as unemployment, working hours and the rights of class unions.
Actions in Brazil took place in several states of the country and reports are still coming in. However, in at least four mayor cities actions took place. In Campinas, located in the State of São Paulo, huge paintings were made, mobilizing for the 1st of May and the General Strike. In Fortaleza, the capitol of the state Ceará, an inventive action to handout revolutionary newspapers was organized. In Rio, a detachment of comrades conducted a May Day march, having with them the flag of the Mexican comrades in their manifestation. In Contagem, in the state of Minas Gerais, the Worker’s League, the League of Poor Peasants and the Popular Women’s Movement mobilized a large amount of participants to the demonstration, of which a video was made by the comrades from A Nova Democracia.
In Ecuador marches celebrating the 1st of May took place in several cities, such as Quito or Ibarra, where also revolutionaries were present. Comrades of the Communist Party of Ecuador – Red Sun and detachments of uniformly dressed and masked Red Guards took part, the latter agitating the masses with dedicated leaflets using the slogans “Long live Maoism, down with revisionism!” and “Long live the glorious international communist movement!”. Very important to highlight is also the strong manifestations shown by the comrades of the Front in Defense of the Rights of the Workers of Imbabura, a front that brings together several syndicates and popular organizations.
The comrades from Mexico prepared its comrades through a dedicated call for this 1st of May, also saluting and reaffirming their commitment with the other revolutionary forces in the International Communist Movement. And, if one would solely judge by the various pictures and reports from the 1st of May demonstrations throughout the world, one could get the impression, that the comrades had been present physically in revolutionary manifestations in dozens of cities all around the globe, as their slogans, pictures and comrades were put in the heart of the struggles of the proletariat throughout the world. At this 1st of May, we proudly follow their rallying cry: “With the Red Sun, the people will win!”