resort to police--animal violence and bayonets. What-is thus reflected in each upsurge is a broadening and deepening sense that new, alternate institutions of government must be created by insurgent masses of the people themselves. The whole advanced capitalist sector is now plunged headlong toward economic catastrophe in a period of accelerating social crisis. In this situation, except for increasing use of bloody force, the ruling class is unable to present any evidence of its continuing right to rule, and has been unable to this point, to offer any credible sense of national direction and purpose in any sector of its rule. What happened at Columbia, and what occurs wherever this movement now spreads, is a series of struggles around those immediate issues which most appropriately express the deeper, not-yet-conscious broader issues actually energizing increased masses into the ranks of both the radical left and the radical right.
It is that correlation of deeper and immediate issues which has to be understood.
While meaningful reports from France have not yet been received, it is clear enough from the results, that the same social dynamics occurred there as at Columbia. The French industrial workers, faced with a long-stagnating economy, deteriorating real wages--and promise of worse--needed only the focus for common mobilization to begin a mass strike process now (at this moment) involving millions of workers.
What the foregoing is submitted to emphasize is the necessary .correlation between the initiating political strike action and the contiguous mass forces. The action of the vanguard must be comprehensible to contiguous mass forces; it must make sense; the issues must make sense and represent issues for which the larger forces themselves are almost disposed to fight. Furthermore, the proper time for a strike action is that juncture at which other methods of protest have peaked in terms of "legitimate" channels and less sharp confrontations with agencies and institutions of government. The purpose of the strike action is not to "electrify the masses, " It must be an organic expression of the mass movement; it is a bold action taken by a vanguard at the point that the life and development of the struggle requires it to break through conventional established bounds into a new phase and new forms. At the start of a mass strike process, as has occurred at Columbia, the exigencies of the situation require the emergence of a competent leadership. They may function as emergent mass leaders, selected through the testing process of the action itself, or play one of the many peripheral roles which are actually decisive in giving shape to the actual development of the