a Workers Solidarity Movement policy statement

Threats and Collaborators

The Workers Solidarity Movement, as an anarchist and anti-imperialist organisation, agrees with the Provos that workers should not collaborate with the forces of imperialism. It is not in the interest of any worker to collaborate with imperialism, in Ireland or anywhere else.

In all wars collaborators are targetted. The ruling class understand this; which is why it is a punishable offence to provide safe houses, information or supplies to the IRA.

The IRA threats to workers who service or deliver to Army bases and RUC & UDR barracks tell us much about the Provos. For all their left-wing slogans, they remain an authoritarian nationalist movement whose most advanced members cannot see beyond a state capitalist Ireland created over the heads of workers.

A genuinely socialist and revolutionary movement would have appealed to workers to black these bases because it is in their own interest to fight imperialism. It is undeniable that such an appeal would have been ignored by most, but in some areas it would have been heeded. A campaign of this sort would consist of raising the issue within the unions, holding meetings at depot gates, producing leaflets, taking up the arguments and fighting for official union backing for anyone disciplined or sacked for refusing to help the state's war effort.

It would be a start in bringing workers - as workers - to the head of the anti-imperialist struggle. It has been done before. At the time of the War of Independence there was an anti-conscription strike, the "Limerick Soviet", the refusal of train drivers to carry British troops or war materials.

We must also look at the objective results of the threats. It does not matter a lot what the intentions of the Provos are, the fact is that killing electricians and other workers drives Protestants of our class further into the arms of bigots like Paisley. It is not enough to denounce such workers as supporters of imperialism - the question how to win them away from that. Death threats certainly cannot do it. Whether we like it or not most Protestants believe that such workers are shot because they are Protestants and that the Provos' stated reasons are not the real ones. Therefore we call for the threats to be lifted and replaced by a workplace campaign based on arguments about working class self-interest.

This paper is out of date - see the new WSM site for the more recent version