H: Perspectives

Submitted by libcom on December 20, 2005

Dissatisfaction with respect to the material demands, and disillusionment with the union, caused the workers to analyze in depth a problem which had been touched earlier by the Citroën Committee, namely the problem of whether militant action should take place inside the union or outside it. A large number of unorganized workers were trying to concentrate their force by forging new forms of organization. Once the problem of the union was solved, the Citroën Committee would be able to develop and enlarge the perspectives for action which could be drawn from its experience.

For the Citroën workers, the Citroën Action Committee is an organ for liaison and information. Within the context of the committee, the workers are able to coordinate their efforts to organize rank-and-file committees in the factory's workshops. At the weekly meetings with another action committee, the Inter-Enterprise Committee, Citroën workers learn that similar organizational efforts are taking place in other enterprises, and through their contacts abroad they learn about the efforts of automobile workers in other countries. The workers are aware that the revolutionary significance of the rank-and-file committees can only find expression in another period of crisis. The rank-and-file committees are seen as a basis for the massive occupation of the factories, accompanied by an awareness on the part of the workers that they are the only legitimate power inside the plants ( namely that no special group can speak or negotiate for the mass of the workers ). The massive occupation, accompanied by the workers' consciousness of their power as a class, is the condition for the workers to begin appropriating, namely using, the instruments of production as an overt manifestation of their power. The act of overt appropriation of the means of production by the workers will have to be accompanied by organized armed defense of the factories, since the capitalist class will try to regain the factories with its police and with what remains of its army. At this point, in order to abolish the capitalist system and to avoid being crushed by foreign armies, the workers will have to extend their struggle to the principal centers of the world capitalist system. Only at that point would complete worker control over the material conditions of life be a reality, and at that point the building of a society without commodities, without exchange and without classes could begin.

by Members of the Citroën Action Committee
( Roger Gregoire and Fredy Perlman )