STATEMENT of IWL(FI)
Written by International Secretariat of IWL-FI
Wednesday, 16 September 2015 13:06
Next September 20, snap general elections will be held in Greece. These elections come after Alexis Tsipras’ resignation to the post of prime minister on the grounds that the mandate for which he was elected last January (negotiating with the European Union, in his words) “has run its course.”
The last agreement signed between the EU and the government of Tsipras and Syriza stated their betrayal of the Greek people, of their permanent struggle of recent years against austerity, of the aspirations of profound changes expressed in last January elections (which led Syriza to the government) and, basically, the gigantic triumph of NO in the referendum last July.
Now Syriza performs a typical maneuver of bourgeois politics: holding elections before the brutal austerity plan – the agreement signed with the EU – is applied and with its popularity still high, it seeks to win electoral support for a new government. If so, it could say it has now “a mandate to implement the austerity plan” and so demoralize the masses, keeping the situation in the electoral-parliamentary ground and not in that of fighting in the streets against austerity.
Tsipras’ calculations took into account the rupture of Syriza’s left wing (who formed a new party, the Popular Unity) and the impossibility of achieving a parliamentary majority needed to govern. So, he tries to form a new government supported by the right-wing opposition (as the New Democracy and other organizations), thus repeating the parliamentary support given by these forces in the last agreement with the EU. If this occurs, the new government could not be defined as a “popular front” government but as a government of “national unity.”
However, the election aftermath is not yet defined. Polls show a drop in voting intentions in Syriza (compared to last January) and a growth of New Democracy and Potami (a bourgeois party). That is, the more likely it is to have a victory for Syriza, but no parliamentary majority, although it’s not ruled out a right-wing victory and a cabinet of these parties.
The Popular Unity party
In this context, the Popular Unity arises, a new party resulting from the rupture of the Syriza’s leftwing. This organization arouses expectations in the vanguard and the left worldwide. It is, therefore, important to define the nature of this organization and what are its positions and dynamics.
If we consider it was part of Syriza and its participation in Tsipras government, the split to form the Popular Unity is a step forward. But it is a break due to the brutal right turn of Syriza, whose center is the parliamentary-electoral activity, not because of the masses struggle. What it proposes, in the words of one of its main leaders (Stathis Kouvelakis), is the return to the “Syriza of the origins”.
In other words, they are still “left Europeanists.” They propose to fight the austerity plans and even to that Greece leaves the euro. But they do not propose to break with the European Union (this war machine against the workers and the people). In this context, they advocate the establishment of closer ties with Russia, China and the “progressive governments of the South” (possibly Venezuela, Bolivia, Brazil Argentina, etc.). All within the capitalist system and the “possible alternatives” (which have shown they don’t offer a real solution and are also in a deep crisis).
The rupture of Syriza was also expressed in a division of the organizations that make up the ELP (European Left Parties), since the French NPA and a minority sector of Podemos (Spain) have followed the People’s Unity positions.
In the upcoming elections, we call the vote on organizations to the left of the Popular Unity, as Antarsya or OKDE-EP. But these elections are ultimately a “way station” of the Greek situation. The entire election campaign must be at the service of the struggles that will face the future austerity plan of a possible Syriza-led government (or of a rightist one) in workplaces and on the streets. It requires the broadest unity of action of trade unions and political organizations that are against austerity. Elections must be used for this purpose. Only the struggle can open a real way out of the country.
For the development of this struggle and the beginning of a fundamental solution to the “Greek tragedy”, we propose a program with the following points:
– No to the agreement signed by Tsipras and to the next austerity plan;
– Immediate suspension of the payment of the foreign debt. Break with the euro and the European Union;
– Expropriation without compensation of the banks and major companies under workers ‘control;
For an emergency economic plan to serve the most urgent needs of the masses;
– For a workers’ and the people’s government;
– For the construction of a revolutionary alternative leadership: a socialist, internationalist and working-class party.
We are convinced that this revolutionary alternative of workers and the impoverished people goes through the construction of an European revolutionary workers pole, to call workers across Europe to face imperialism and capitalist governments with their struggle and mobilization in the perspective of a Federation of Free European Socialist Republics.