On August 29, the Young Communists of Chile (JJCC) celebrated their 88th anniversary of existence on the 50th anniversary of the victory of the Popular Front coalition in Chile. The Communist Party of Chile played a historical role in the participation and leadership of the Salvador Allende–led Popular Unity coalition which was elected in 1970 before being overthrown in the U.S.-backed fascist coup in 1973. The Chilean Communist Party played a leading role in the resistance to the almost 30-year-long dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet.
The various communist youth leagues which gathered by invitation of the JJCC included the Young Communists of the USA, Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina, and Colombia. The conversation took place in light of the recent Portuguese Communist Youth’s call for an international effort by progressive and communist youth groups to unite and fight against the extreme right. From racist policing and Trump’s neo-fascist agenda in the U.S. to Bolsonaro’s dismantling of Lula-era progressive policies, the youth of the world has a long fight ahead of them.
Some communist youth groups present at the meeting expressed their excitement for finally being on the “offensive” in the class and democratic struggles. The Argentinian Communists happen to be in the governing coalition with other leftist and progressive forces ever since their electoral win last October. On the other hand, the communist youth groups representing Uruguay, Brazil, and Chile analyzed their defensive role in the struggle against Trump-like right-wing leaders in their countries.
Youth throughout the Americas are suffering now more than ever because of the pandemic, economic crises, and brutal police tactics upheld by extreme-right governments. Where do we go from here? How are our struggles similar? Where are our points of unity around which we can expand our organizations’ reach and bring others into the movement? These questions were debated and will continue to be examined as time goes on.
From organizing around electoral campaigns to building Marxist reading clubs on college campuses and from demanding a new constitution in Chile to defunding the police in the U.S., communist youth groups across the American continent continue to stand firm in the struggle for democracy and socialism. Only through unity can we defeat monopoly capitalism-imperialism across the globe.