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The Militant, 27 July 1946

Trotskyists Spur Fight for Freedom of Egypt

(10 July 1946)

From The Militant, Vol. X No. 30, 27 July 1946, p. 3.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’Callaghan for ETOL.


CAIRO, July 10 – While the Egyptian government is carrying on protracted negotiations with the British, the workers, peasants and students are taking the struggle for independence onto the streets. In this the Egyptian Trotskyists are playing an increasing and leading role.

On February 9, the day on which the police fired on demonstrations in Cairo and Alexandria, killing 27, the Trotskyists in Cairo issued a leaflet calling on the students not to remain within the walls of the University but to quit the capitalist districts and to go to where the workers are. The leaflet concluded:

“Students and workers! Unite as the specter of reaction haunts the country. You students alone cannot overcome the police. Go to the workers and you will find enough power to meet the police. Without a swift link with the workers our Revolution will lose its popular basis. Don’t appear before the Royal Palace but to the factories, to the workers, the true representatives of the people and thus encourage them to continue their heroic deeds.”

Wide Response

This call met with immediate response, the students making the slogan “Towards the workers” their own. In Alexandria 3,000 students marched to the workers’ districts where they were joined by 30,000 workers from textile factories.

The police, estimating the danger of such united action, fired, killing two workers and three students, and injuring 30. The Prime Minister, replying to a question in Parliament, justified the shooting of the students by saying:

“Do you know what happened in Alex? Three thousand students went where the textile factories are and if the police did not take exceptional measures our whole history would have been changed.”

On the same day the police, infuriated by the activities of the Trotskyists, made a city-wide search, arresting three students and a worker who were distributing leaflets.

In Cairo also the students succeeded in joining forces with the workers and creating a Joint Committee of Students and Workers in which the Trotskyists are active. It marked the beginning of a new era in the history of our movement in Egypt.

As the Trotskyist journal in Egypt is banned, it has been decided to continue with the issue of leaflets. The second leaflet accused the King of responsibility for the death of those who were shot by the police:

“Students and workers, this is the most evident case that capitalism and imperialism are our most deadly enemies. The King and his degenerated class know that their days have gone and want to keep you down by force, but they will never do so. You are bold enough and in the end you and the workers will be victorious.”

Clarion Call

While the Egyptian ruling class and the representatives of British imperialism continue to bargain behind closed doors, the demonstrations on the street go on unabated.

The slogan, “Long Live Workers and Students” has become the clarion call of the toilers and the intellectuals and even of the little children in the streets. The toiling classes now clearly know that the coming revolution will be a proletarian revolution and not a capitalist revolution. The revolution has been abandoned by the nationalist capitalists.

In the streets only students and workers lead the demonstrations. On the walls of Cairo and Alexandria you can read in English and Arabic “Join the Revolutionary Communist Party” (Middle East Section, Fourth International). The activities of the Trotskyists are gaining them new adherents every day. Their increased prestige and leadership in the struggle of the workers and students is the best guarantee of final victory.

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Last updated on 26 June 2021