European day of action against capitalism, March 31

16 posts / 0 new
Last post
Joined: 11-02-07
Jan 27 2012 00:14
European day of action against capitalism, March 31
Left wing organisations and libertarian grassroots unions call for an international day of action

During an international meeting in December 2011 in Frankfurt am Main, several left wing organisations and grassroots unions from Greece, Spain, Poland, Austria and Germany decided to launch a joint effort against capitalist reforms under the current crisis. On march 31st, there will be a “European Day of Action against Capitalism”, with simultaneous demonstrations in those countries, labeled “M31″. Groups from other countries are likely to join in, as networking continues. Protests will be directed against neoliberal and undemocratic impositions by the European Union (EU), the European Central Bank (ECB) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

The anticapitalist organisations involved want to send a clear signal against further austerity measures, mainly propelled by Germany, and on the backs of workers, the unemployed, students and migrants.

We protest against nationalist propaganda targeting wageworkers in Southern European countries, and against the EU’s military bulkheading on its borders. Alternatively, organisers of M31 call for transnational solidarity and self-organisation of those affected by further cuts, privatization and capitalist exploitation.

Up to now, there is no effective transnational solidarity between workers, unions, the unemployed and migrants. If we want this to change, we’ll have to do it ourselves.

The international day of action in spring preludes a forthcoming European initiative of left wing organisations and grassroots unions, preparing further protests throughout 2012. We invite other emancipatory unions and organisations to join M31. Please take note of our Call for Action on We’ll be happy to answer any request or proposal.
Let’s get started!

ESE, FAU and ZSP are listed as being involved but I don't know any more about it.

Railyon's picture
Joined: 4-11-11
Jan 27 2012 13:03

Briefly talked to my comrades in the local FAU but we (that is, our local branch) are unlikely to attend the main protest in Frankfurt. Looks like we will instead stay and join other protesters in the region (DKP, Linke, etc... whoever shows up) - but no concrete plans yet.

Chilli Sauce's picture
Chilli Sauce
Joined: 5-10-07
Jan 29 2012 10:26

Yeah, we discussed this briefly in my SF local, basically decided that these abstract days of action are pretty pointless and we'd rather undertake practical activities and place them within the context of capitalism.

Joined: 29-09-06
Jan 29 2012 12:56

This is an English translation of a small press release on our demonstration March 31:

We had a different view of things, but understand completely that the way people would view different types of international mobilizations would depend completely on their local situations and how this matches their needs and abilities as an organization. This is why our ideas for making some kind of international mobilization were somewhat different to this as we see mobilizations as not necessarily mass demonstrations.

Not everybody needs a mass demonstration, it does not make sense for every organization to spend their resources on this, and certainly the effects would be different for the different groups involved. What we thought would be more useful is simply a coordinated increase in activity of different sorts, which would include workplace conflicts, solidarity actions, informational actions, etc. In terms of our particular local situation, we do these things all the time and it was not an either/or situation, because it is not the case that we are resigning from one to do the other, or putting a lot of resources into it. (We are just informing about this action while we do other things.)

We find that it simply boosts people's morale to go out onto the streets once or twice a year in some bigger group and protest. We are in a different situation than many countries, because we do not usually have large protests unless we make them ourselves and a lot of people are discouraged by this. I am sort of against that thinking, because we have seen that even direct actions made consistently with a small group of people at a workplace can bring more concrete results than a mass demonstration. And it is necessary to do the daily work which is not necessarily spectacular.

But there are a lot of people who only are motivated by more mass action I am afraid. We have to fight with that type of thinking, but at the same time, we realize that it's useful to sometimes do it. In our case at least it is important in our struggles with the government to show them some angry people from time to time since they are very comfortable with the docile public and like to pretend that the whole society consents to everything they are doing.

The international text is somewhat abstract, but our local texts and leaflets are rather concrete about the issues. We have had a lot of concrete feedback to them since we have been on some protests and do tables on the issue of the retirement age and were able to give out some 5000 leaflets this week. Almost universally people say that they support it, people have taken them and put them up in hospitals and public schools. That said, in the end, very few people will come, because people don't believe protest will change anything and are very cynical. This creates a vicious circle, because it is not that they prefer everyday activism to protest, but that they just feel completely disempowered. And the politicians know it and feel they can get away with anything. I can truly say that they pull shit in this country that usually happens in places like Russia or Zimbabwe, that is how untouchable the politicians feel.

We had a little ray of hope this week as we saw mass protests against ACTA and we saw how many people took up the most radical, anarchistic slogans. We even saw that some people copied the slogans from the ZSP banners and made their banners with the same ones. Well, still we clearly tell people that none of this replaces organizing on a daily basis, but since we have that going on, we have something to invite new people to and people meet us and contact us later that they would like to get involved. So in our context, protests like these, which are too rare here, do help us to get in touch with new people and, even if not all people wind up participating in future events, at least they see our ideas, which run completely counter to those of the system and the dominant ideologies.

A bit of a clarification though: our action is coordinated autonomously. Also, the Greek organization that declared it's participation was AK, although it is likely that ESE will go together in a demonstration with them.

I am glad to see that SF comrades are keeping up a good level of concrete activity and support their position to concentrate on developing this. I would be very happy if they wouldn't make too sweeping declarations on the usefulness of some other mobilizations like the ones in Germany or Poland because, for example, both the ZSP and FAU are pretty much like SF and with some concrete workplace campaigns so if we felt on top of this the need for making some demonstration, please understand that it certainly isn't because we are fond of wasting time. smile If the SF had some more concrete action to do on that day, it would be cool to link it, but, if not, it would be nice just to get best wishes for our efforts for that day!

BTW, if any of you want, you are of course invited to come for the weekend!

Chilli Sauce's picture
Chilli Sauce
Joined: 5-10-07
Jan 29 2012 13:03

Sorry if that came across harsh Akai and I quite agree with you, getting out onto the streets once or twice a year is a lot of fun.

Joined: 29-09-06
Jan 29 2012 13:30

No probs. I understand your point completely. Just remember that we want to encourage our folks, not discourage them. smile A nice greeting to us on our 5th anniversary from different organizations would also mean a lot, just as a friendly gesture (hint, hint). smile You know that us youngsters still look forward to birthday parties.

Joined: 28-10-09
Mar 6 2012 22:54

In the Netherlands, there will be a demonstration for the occasion which is looking quite good. It's organized by anarchist and related groups, but there is some support from Occupy circles. Also, the context makes it interesting: there is something of a strike wave going on in the Netherlands, a cleaners' strike into its tenth week, with sit-ins at university buildings by cleaners supported by students; and a one-day teachers' strike and rally today, with 50.000 in attendance.

Joined: 27-11-06
Mar 8 2012 22:04

I think you should look again what's published on
It will be the biggest mobilisation of the anarchosyndicalist-, libertarian- and anti-autoritarian movement since decades.
From the IWA side the CNT, USI and FAU are involved in the M31 mobilisation. This means 99% of the members of the IWA.

Joined: 15-03-12
Mar 15 2012 15:27

Check m31 on facebook for updates, countdown and future plans:

On the continent, there will be demonstrations or other initiatives in Athens, Kiev, Zagreb, Vienna, Frankfurt, Utrecht, and most likely in Ljubljana, Porto and Brussels. A demonstration in Warsaw is loosely affiliated. For Spain, much will probably depend on how their general strike on March 29th plays out. Groups from different countries and regions are still joining the Network.

In New York City, there will be a public meeting in solidarity with M31 on Union Square, organized by anticapitalist groups within OWS.

There are a couple of useful translations on

You can reach organizers and media-people via m31 [ @ ]

Plus there’s a cute clip on YouTube for the rally in Frankfurt:

Joined: 6-03-12
Mar 15 2012 16:28

have a look

Joined: 29-09-06
Mar 16 2012 10:31

Well, I am glad that people are mobilizing; let's just hope that they do it more often on a day-to-day basis and not concentrate on one-off demos.

But I object to silly exaggerated comments like the one about 99% of the IWA protesting. Those 3 sections do not make up that much of the international, although certainly CNT in Spain is much bigger and so is 60-65 percent of it all. I think comments like that are disparaging to other sections and misleading. For example, SF or ZSP certainly both constitute over 1% of the IWA smile... what's more, they are active and growing organizations, and their activity accounts for a bigger part of the IWA actions. So they shouldn't be treated like some margin when their activity is actually important (just like everybody's elses... just should be more of it from some places).

In terms of the actions planned as well, it is good that SF found an action that was not too abstract and approached it in a coordinated way. ZSP is also trying to protest around concrete issues and spread the struggle in a wider way, integrating it with issues we are dealing with on a more constant basis in direct forms. In terms of the CNT, they haven't announced any concrete demos for the 31st yet, although they plan to... but there in Spain they also have a more concrete local issue to deal with at the same time - the strike against the labor reform on the 29th - which will naturally have to take priority.

In any case, it is not important. It is more important to have constant work and build the organizations. Not that I am against the demos - on the contrary - but it needs to be looked at in perspective. We need to be functioning better on a daily level, not just going out on the streets once in a while.

Joined: 29-03-07
Mar 16 2012 21:47

glad you reacted, i consider kc's reaction really stupid and uncomradely.

Joseph Kay's picture
Joseph Kay
Joined: 14-03-06
Mar 16 2012 22:09

As i understand it (there were four proposals which agreed and contradicted one another to varying extents), the IWA voted to have 3 days of action from the 29th to the 31st. The thinking was to include some weekdays, so the sections capable of industrial action could build for that (e.g. the CNT calling for a general strike on the 29th). As far as I know, this isn't a rival to the M31 thing (as several IWA sections are involved) but a slight broadening of it.

In my Local, we only spent 15 minutes discussing it as we had plenty of other business. We weren't keen on abstract days of action, but when it was voted through were happy to tie in concrete ongoing activity with the international co-ordinations. We also met a couple of M31 organisers in Brighton. For SF's part, we're likely to be focused on anti-workfare activity. If all goes to plan, my Local are aiming to pull off pickets in three cities on the south coast, and it sounds like most SF locals as well as fraternal organisations will be taking action too.

JHadfield's picture
Joined: 26-02-12
Mar 22 2012 00:26

I would like to be involved on the 31st March doing actions etc, might need to hook up with Northampton Solfed .... and some Milton Keynes .... people or maybe bit further out !!!

Be a good idea, to do something around Tesco where I live ... How they are not employing people .... Plus the sales people on the mobile phone desk rip you off !!!

Jobs march on Kingston ( Milton Keynes ) Tesco, will probably need to re-create this page, but you get the idea:

Joined: 25-07-11
May 9 2013 13:28

a discussion paper about "actively supporting" european general strikes (in german):