The Defense Workers Manifesto

A spectre is haunting a bougersisie state….the spectre of working class consciousness amongst defense workers and forces of the bourgeoisie state have launched a futile campaign to exorcize this spectre.

Since the strike by South African National Defense workers, Minister of Defense and Military Veterans, Lindiwe Sisulu, has been busy with a campaign to de-unionize the defense.

Every week she uses mass media platforms to spread propaganda to prepare us for the impending reversal of soldier’s democratic rights to be organized and fight for their rights as workers.

Defense workers like all workers have workplace rights to demand a living wage and good working conditions.

For a long time defense workers in this country amongst other professions such as teaching, health and police have been subjected to peanuts wages and unbearable working conditions.

These defense workers include revolutionary freedom fighters who participated in the national liberation struggle against apartheid capitalist settler colonial state.

Government claims to care for defense workers because they render exceptionally important national service, so they say, but the treatment meted to defense workers hitherto clearly shows that their role is not valued and appreciated.

Defense workers fully understand the very important duty to defend the country. They are equally aware of the duty to pay allegiance to their country. In the same vein they expect to be treated with fitting consideration.

There must be a separation between service and allegiance to the country as opposed to loyalty to the ruling elite.

A bourgeoisie state exploit defense workers to further its bourgeoisie class interests in the same way it exploits workers in general.

This state wants defense workers to defend and entrench hegemony of the bourgeoisie class over the working class masses and do not want defense workers to unite with the rest of the working class.

Defense workers are part of the marginalized, exploited and degraded working class and for defense workers the chief perpetrator of their pain and suffering is the state.

As the strike demonstrated, defense workers, like all oppressed and exploited classes, have the power to break the shackles of capitalist bondage.

In unity, defense workers together with the rest of the working class shall emerge victorious.

Hulisani Mmbara
Chief Editor