In front of the suffocating narrowness of their national borders, the governments of the German, French, Italian bourgeoisie… chose in 1957 to implement the European Union (EU). They did not do it unanimously: for example, the Gaullist party in France was hostile to it. However, initial successes of the capitalist EU led 22 other countries to join the 6 pioneers. The intensity of the economic exchanges within the EU and the dependence of the other currencies towards the German mark pushed the French bourgeoisie and its Italian stooge to require from the German bourgeoisie a single currency in 1992. Today, through the European Central Bank (ECB), 19 states of the EU (among which Greece) share the euro and its management.
But the ruling classes remain unable to do without their national state, which they use against their working class but also against their rivals, including neighbours; the dominant ideology is mainly based on traditional nationalism (of the country). In short, the bourgeoisies show themselves unable to unify Europe.
Europe of the capitalists thus shows itself unable, not only to take in the refugees from Africa and the Middle East, but to save within itself the most fragile European capitalism, which collapsed during the world capitalist crisis of 2007-2009. The German government was slow in helping the Greek government and did it only on conditions which worsened the depression. In Greece too, there are classes. The loans of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and of the EU benefited mainly Greek capitalists, in particular the banks, and the capitalist groups of armament and finance from Western Europe and the USA. Since 2010, the ECB-European Commission-IMF troika mainly demanded blows against Greek labour. Some economists and media go so far as to calumniate, in a loathsome way, the Greek people as lazy and parasitic. Merkel, Hollande, Juncker and Lagarde multiplied for several months their demands towards the Greek government: to raise VAT, to lower retirement pensions… The representatives of the Western imperialisms play the sorcerer’s apprentices, as with their schemes to attract Ukraine into the EU and NATO, as with their military interventions in Iraq, in Libya, in Syria…
The reformists parties of Europe showed themselves unable, not only to set up at home workers’ governments (the only ones suited to lend a helping hand to the workers of Greece), but to even require the cancellation of the credits of their own bourgeoisie on Greece. Worse, some of them (PS, SPD, SPÖ…) belong to the bourgeois governments which strangle Greece.
For its part, Greece remained capitalist and thus unable to come out of the trap and to show a way for all Europe. The cause is political: the labour movement remains prisoner of the two bourgeois workers’ parties (Syriza and KKE), both issued from Stalinism that betrayed socialist revolution in 1944 and always capitulated to its own bourgeoisie.
The KKE (Communist Party of Greece) divides furiously the workers’ ranks, splits the trade unions and feeds an irresponsible chauvinism to make the workers believe in that the exit from the euro and the EU will benefit them, as if Greek capitalism fallen back upon its borders and having recovered the drachma could escape from economic crises and foreign domination.
Syriza (Coalition of the Radical Left) won the legislative elections, but has allied itself to the ANEL (Independent Greeks), a xenophobic anti-EU and anti-migrant bourgeois party. The parliamentary majority of Syriza and the Prime Minister Tsipras did not dismantle the hypertrophied army that buys on a large scale from the US, French and German armament groups. They did not dare to cancel the national debt. They did not even dare to impose taxes on the ship-owners and the Orthodox Church, who still do not pay any taxes. Face front to the representatives of imperialism, the Syriza-ANEL government was ready to increase the VAT, to lower the retirement pensions and to privatize… but not enough for the rapacious imperialist bourgeoisies.
Neither Syriza, nor the KKE have formed workers’, peasants’ and students’ councils. The social-patriotism shared by Syriza and the KKE, their common confidence in the bourgeois army, the impotence of the popular front government and the sectarianism of the KKE play into the hands of the army staff and of fascism represented mainly by XA (Golden Dawn). The referendum is a desperate manoeuvre of the Tsipras government which remains within the framework of bourgeois democracy. A “No”, probably the rightly vote the majority of workers, will not solve anything. In solidarity towards their sisters and their brothers of Greece, the European workers must fight for the cancellation of the credit of their own bourgeoisie on Greece, to fight at home for a workers government of the type Commune of Paris of 1871 and of the Russian Soviets of 1917, to open the way of world socialism.
The world proletariat needs in an International that raises up the red flag of the exploited and oppressed, that breaks with the bourgeoisie and prepares the social revolution. In solidarity towards their sisters and their brothers of Greece, the European workers must fight for the cancellation of the credit of their own bourgeoisie on Greece, to fight at home for a workers’ government of the type Commune of Paris of 1871 and of the Russian Soviets of 1917, to open the way of world socialism. The workers of Greece need a revolutionary and internationalist workers’ party, faithful to the legacy of Marx, Engels, Luxemburg, Lenin, Trotsky and Pouliopoulos, that fights for:
- No to the Troika plan! Syriza-KKE Government without bourgeois ministers!
- Suppression of the VAT on consumer goods of workers! Separation of Church and State! Cancellation of the debt! Expropriation of banks and large companies, starting with the ship-owners!
- Withdrawal of NATO! Dissolution of the army and the police! Armament of the people against the police force and the fascists! Democratic rights for conscripts!
- Unity of local and migrant workers! A unique, democratic and class-struggle union confederation! Councils gathering workers in corporations, administrations, districts, villages, universities, for workers’ and popular control!
- Workers’ and peasants’ government based on the councils and armed people! United Socialist States of Europe!