Argentina: The Capitulation of Kirchnerism to the G20 and IMF

“As a progressive space, we should get used to not presenting ourselves as an opposition, but as the political and social space that exceeds the categories of left and right to decidedly be part of a new category of thought, and it is that of the people”. This is how Cristina Fernández de Kirchner foretold her conciliation with the G20 and the IMF during the Critical Thought Forum organised by the CLACSO previous to the summit. Not progressive at all.

It is already remarkable for a political space that defines itself as progressive to raise the issue of setting aside the categories of left and right, which –by the way– any common person clearly understands. But, even from this imprecise “people´s” category Cristina proposes, her clear rejection of appearing in opposition of the G20 and the IMF makes her position of openly conciliation with those imperialist agencies cristal clear. The truth is that, with this position, CFK places herself way behind the average consciousness of her voters, 70% of whom –according to polls published during the days of the summit- thinks that the G20 “does not solve people´s problems”, and barely 8% of whom have “some expectations in future investments”. Instead of encouraging that popular mistrust in the G20 and the IMF, Cristina tells her followers to not confront them, but to retreat and reconcile with them.

Lowering the flags

During the 70s, the Peronist left justified its support of capitalist political projects, like the PJ (JusticeParty), based on the idea that the main contradiction in our country was against imperialism, while considering the struggle of the working people against the national bourgeois a secondary contradiction. They insisted on a multi-class project, of class conciliation -which we do not share– but at least they criticized foreign domination, particularly that of the United States. In comparison to those times, the current position of the Kirchnerist leaders has gone way back in time. They don´teven say “homeland yes, colony no” enymore. This is about a profound political retreat.

  • Argentina is still a semi-colonial country, with an economic system that is increasingly subdued to the impositions of corporations, imperialism and their international organisms: the G20, the IMF the World Bank, the World Trade Organization and other monstrosities.
  • Our economic infrastructure and natural resources, including our lands, have been suffering a process of concentration and increasing foreign ownership.
  • The 2019 National Budget of austerity and submission, approved weeks ago by Cambiemos and the Federal PJ, was designed by the IMF in order to “honour” that enormous scam they call foreign debt. Against the recepies of neo-liberal imperialism -which is the only face of the present day capitalism– the historical Peronist flags of political sovereignty and economic independence, as well as the non peyment the foreign debt and rejection of the G20 and the IMF maintain full validity today. Not raising them against the G20 summit is conciliating, it’s actually capitulating to the oppressive dependence that loots and pollutes us. Although in her CLACSO speech, Cristina critisized “the policies imposed from outside” and the “structural ball and chain of an unprecedented foreign debt”, she gave orders to lower the anti-imperialist flags and imposed her capitulating line on every organizations that holds her as a reference. Part of the CTA (Argentinian Workers Central) and the CTEP went to the counter-summit on 29N and to the joint mobilization on 30N against the G20 and the IMF, but not a single Kirchnerist political organization took part inthose actions, not even in the mobilization to Congress, attended by thousands. Not even one. Regretful.

A bit to Atlanta, but nothing on the 30th

During 27N, some organizations held a rally at the Atlanta stadium under the motto “No to the G20” and “Down with the IMF”. Among them was the Evita Movement, part of Barrios de Pie and the CCC. Former Buenos Aires governor Felipe Sola was one of the closing speakers: “Let’s stick together, building an alternative to these austerity policies that the government applies” he said. First of all, any “alternative to these austerity policies”, if it aims to be authentic, should make a clear break with any imperialist program. Second, in the case of the Evita Movement, their assistance to this rallybecame their excuse for not mobilizing on the 30th to the Congress Plaza. At the same time, along with other Kirchnerist organizations, they tried to dissimulate their absence from the unitary anti G20 mobilization to their activist base, by shamfully alluding to a possible police repression.

The political project that we need

Just as Cristina´s call to conciliate green and blue scarves (refers to the pro-choice and anti-abortion movements) in a common political project provoked unease among many feminist activists who still have Cristina as a reference, the same thing happened with her recent refusal to mobilize against the G20 and the IMF. Around the country, young activists that honestly thought themselves part of a “national, popular, democratic and feminist” movement, are being disappointed because their political leader is already putting down the feminist and national flags. Will Cristina Kirchner continue down this path of increasing political correction and moderation, as recommended by several surveyors, in order to maximize her electoral base? Will she join the PJ, accomplice of Macri, in order to defeat him? And she eill defeat Macri to then implement what project?

The way we see it, this is not a simple controversy around which tactic matters in order to benefit one or an other circumstantial electoral front. Not at all. What Cristina has challenged has a strategic character, its the basic pillars that make up the structural essence of any political project: how to act toward imperialist dominion, the legalization of abortion and other gender rights. Conciliating with the G20 and the IMF, conciliating with the Catholic Church and evangelist anti-rights sectors, conciliating with the old PJ; that is, conciliatinf with the capitalist and patriarchal system, is unacceptable for any project that fights for profound transformations or claims to be progressive.

In this respect, we invite those who are angry or conflicted over these evident capitulations to not put up with them anymore. We invite them to sustain their critical thought and follow their feminist and anti-imperialist gut convictions, to not allow any more of thier flags to be lowered. We invite them to get out of that labyrinth of permanent contradictions that is Kirchnerism and the PJ, where Cristina always end up turning to a regressive position, to the side of turning back the wheels of History. The challenge is clear, the doors of the MST are open and you have the last word.

Pablo Vasco