Up to 40,000 communists marched in Rome Sunday to protest against the policies of the ‘technocrat’ Italian government of Mario Monti.
A sea of red flags flowed through the centre of Rome, from the Piazza della Repubblica to the Colloseum.
The key themes of the demonstration, called by the two communist parties in the Federation of the Left, were the defence of job protection legislation under threat from deregulatory reforms and deep concerns about the austerity policies pursued by prime minister Monti and the EU.
Many of the participants wore a white T-shirt saying ‘Do not lower your head.’
‘The right wing Monti government has no opposition [in parliament]. We must unite the left opposition. From opposition can emerge the alternative, ‘ said Communist Refoundation leader Paolo Ferrero, calling for a political alliance between the Federation of the Left, Left Ecology Freedom Party, led by the former communist Nichi Vendola, and the Italy of Values party founded by former anti-corruption magistrate Antonio di Pietro.
The Communist Refoundation leader called for a general strike over the proposed labour reforms that will make it easier and cheaper for employers to fire workers.
Oliviero Diliberto, leader of the Party of Italian Communists (PdCI) remarked on the knee-capping last week of nuclear engineer Robert Ansaldo Adinolfi, an employee of the Finmeccanica defence firm, saying: ‘Terrorism is the principal enemy of the working class,’ while Ferrero said he hoped that what happened ‘is an isolated incident.’
Among the participants of the march were the ‘No Tav’ opponents of Italy’s contraversial high speed train project, representatives of grassroots unions like Cobas and anti-privatisation campaign groups.
Video interview with Paolo Ferrero ( in Italian )