Apologies that this blog has been a little slow of late. In the meantime, you might be interested in Red Pepper editor Hilary Wainwright's contribution to a debate on socialism in The Guardian (her piece is a response to Martin Kettle).
The following statement is from
various trade unions, left political parties and civil liberties groups in
Communiqué, Paris, November 8th, 2005. Confronted by a revolt born from
the accumulation of inequalities and discrimination in the “banlieues” (suburbs
of Paris) and the poor areas, the French government has just passed a new and
extremely serious threshold in the escalation of security measures. Even in May
1968, when the situation was a lot more dramatic, the public authorities did
not use the extreme measure of declaring a state of emergency. The proclamation
of the state of emergency is the answer to a revolt whose causes are profound
and well known even at the level of state repression.