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    Pierre Besnard (1886-1947)

    French anarcho-syndicalist, born in Montreuil Bellay. Besnard was involved in the AIT (International Workers Association /Asociación Internacional de los Trabajadores), met Durruti, fought in Spanish Revolution of 1936.

    Besnard wrote Le monde nouveau (1936), Les syndicats ouvriers et la révolution sociale (1930), L'éthique du syndicalisme, & contributed to Sebastian Faure's famed l'Encyclopédie anarchiste.

"L'anarcho-syndicalisme est la forme organique que prend l'Anarchie, pour lutter contre le capitalisme. Il est en opposition fondamentale avec le Syndicalisme politique et réformiste. Il est représenté dans le monde par l'A.I.T."

Pierre Besnard & revolutionary trade unionism

Roughly & rather literally translated from "Pierre Besnard et le syndicalisme révolutionnaire",

After the union crowned during the war of 1914-1918 & the Russian Revolution, some revolutionary trade unionists shifted their positions on trade-union neutrality towards parties & philosophical groupings.

"The Charter of Amiens," Pierre Besnard pointed out in the Anarchist Encyclopaedia, "contains six primary assertions, which are the basis of trade unionism. These are: the assertion of unity; the assertion of class war; the assertion of the need for the daily fight in the current struggles; the assertion of the revolutionary capacity of action of the trade unions; the assertion of independence & autonomy; the assertion of direct action & neutrality towards the parties & the philosophical groups." These principles form a whole. It is clear, he continues, that while ceasing respecting one or several of them, one could not that to cause the collapse of the building " It is what occurred with the two successive scissions of the CGT.

Later, with the creation of the CGTSR, Pierre Besnard concluded, in the same work, that trade unionism could not be neutral:

"The fact of proclaiming the bankruptcy of the parties & of substituting the natural groupings of class to them which are the trade unions, implies the peremptory necessity, for the trade unionism, to fight all the political parties without exception.

"The neutrality of the trade unions proclaimed in Amiens, in 1906, was denounced, in November 1926, by the congress constitutive of the CGTSR.

"This decision, much debated at the time, even in our mediums, was however only the logical consequence of the substitution of the concept of class to the concept of party. It is hardly necessary to affirm that the current events, which show with an increased force the total deficiency of the parties, create for us an indisputable obligation, not only to break neutrality with regard to the parties, but still to engage the fight against them openly [... ] He will be still, even in our anarchist ranks, of the comrades to claim that this attitude us constrained not to be never but one movement of sect.

I dare their statement that it is the opposite which is true. They are not Christians, radicals, Socialists, Communists whom it is a question of bringing together in a movement of class, but of the workers as such. We thus ask them to cease being Christians, radicals, Socialists, Communists, brought together in a grouping dedicated in advance with impotence, because of the diversity of the ideas of its components -­ what is well the case currently ­- to become workers, exclusively workers with the concordant interests.

We request them, all things considered, to give up the sterile political struggles for the practical & fertile social fights; to pass from the observation of fact to the necessary action; to link itself, on a solid ground, instead of dividing for fictions."



Liste par auteur:

Anarcho-syndicalisme et anarchisme (Rapport au Congrès anarchiste international de 1937)
L’éthique du syndicalisme
La responsabilité
Le fédéralisme libertaire
Le Monde nouveau (Son plan, sa constitution, son fonctionnement)
Le problème des salaires (Conférence (01/1946)
Les syndicats ouvriers et la Révolution sociale
Pour assurer la paix, comment organiser le monde
Syndicalisme et autorité
L'action directe
Le Monde nouveau
Le Monde nouveau (- Organisation d'une société anarchiste)
Le Monde nouveau : son plan, sa constitution, son gouvernement (- Toute l'économie aux syndicats! Toute l'administration sociale aux communes!)

Biographie de Pierre Besnard from Fondation Pierre Besnard
French wikipedia: Action_directe

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