ESF, London, 14-17 October - Another world is possible

Submitted by Anon on 23 June, 2004 - 12:35

By Vicki Morris

The European Social Forum in London on 14-17 October will be a great event, be in no doubt. Thousands, hopefully tens of thousands, will come from all over Europe and beyond to discuss all the issues of concern to people who oppose capitalism and people who at least want to reform it.
And the ESF will not be just a talking shop. The assembly of the social movements held at the end of the ESF will decide on initiatives for common action across Europe, against war, against privatisation, around EU developments.

The Alliance for Workers' Liberty will play a full role in building and participating in the ESF.

There is much wrong with the organisation of the ESF. The SWP and their allies grabbed the levers of power at the start, and will not give up control except under immense pressure.

Against them we have a mixed opposition, the "Horizontals", fighting valiantly to make the ESF the democratic process that it needs to be to reach its true potential.

The polarisation within the ESF structures is more pronounced than it needs to be, and can be broken down. There are trade unionists who have gone along with the SWP on the grounds that at least they look serious about getting on with practicalities, while the Horizontals appear to have endless navel-gazing sessions about "process".

In the last few weeks, however, there has been a worrying lack of "getting things done" by the main organisers. The SWP is overstretched by its election work with Respect, and important practical work around the ESF is not being done. The trade unionists can let the Horizontals in to take some of the responsibility.

For everyone, there are ample opportunities to get stuck into the process.

If you want to take part in the guerrilla war trying to open up the ESF process, get in touch via office@workersliberty.org.

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