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New Left Review I/24, March-April 1964


Jon Halliday

The New Italian Socialist Party

On January 11th, a new party was founded in Italy: the Italian Socialist Party of Proletarian Unity (psiup). By the end of January it already had 60,000 members. The new party was inaugurated when the Italian Socialist Party (psi) entered the Moro government and its left wing broke away in protest. A third of the members of the psi regional committees left to join the psiup. Within a fortnight psiup membership overtook the psi in Emilia, Tuscany, Sardinia, Sicily and the Abruzzi. The psiup recruited numerous former psi trade-unionists and many young Italians who hitherto belonged to no party. Many socialists outside Italy have been bewildered by the events which led up to the split in the psi. The foundation of the psiup has helped to clarify the situation. It is now possible to give outline answers to a number of important, interconnected questions. How did the centre-left come about? What is the present Moro government programme? What conditions did Nenni and the psi accept before going in with Moro? Why was the psiup founded? What is the attitude of the Italian Communist Party (pci)?

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