More Aleka Papariga

More Aleka Papariga

Hasanyi_Janos
Hasanyi_Janos

May 8th, 2012, 4:21 pm #1

According to Syriza leader Alexis Tsipras -- who is now seeking to form a government in Greece after New Democracy has failed to do so -- Aleka Papariga of KKE will not meet with him. Perhaps a partial answer is given by the KKE's website description of Syriza as the "alliance of opportunist forces and forces from PASOK" http://inter.kke.gr/News/news2012/2012- ... -pinakaki/)
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Hasanyi_Janos
Hasanyi_Janos

May 9th, 2012, 6:22 pm #2

While no one seems very interested, the attempt by Syriza to form a government continue -- this time their leader meets with the leaders of PASOK and New Democracy.http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-18001715
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Francis King
Francis King

May 9th, 2012, 8:09 pm #3

Well, as you know, Janos, you get a more variegated discussion over at Socialist Unity, even if that is at the cost of the occasional dressing-down from that site's administrators...
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Zorba
Zorba

May 10th, 2012, 2:18 am #4

Janos you are quite right to attract our attention to Greece. I admit to feeling a bit torn on this. In principle, I think the KKE position is entirely correct and that Syriza and Democratic Left are genuinely opportunist forces, eg against the bailout but adamantly for the euro and the EU.
I fully understand the KKE's position but tactically I can't help feel that the KKE has painted itself into a corner by not, for example, publishing a ten-point list of demands or suchlike and force Syriza to debate or reject them.
My fear is that if there is a second round of elections the KKE will see its support melt towards these very opportunist forces it opposes as many on the Greek left will want to see a robust renegotiation as a first step, if that fails (as seems likely) the KKE's position would surely be stronger.
It's worth recalling that the underlying causes of the bad blood between KKE and Syriza was the KKE's involvment in precisely such an alliance, Synaspismos, with "opportunists" in the late 80s. In a sense, involvement with Synaspismos split the party more bitterly than the "Exterior" "Interior" conflict a generation earlier.
I don't blame Papariga for her reticence, but as always tactics is an art not an exact science and I'm not sure how the KKE's position is seen by radical left voters, principled and proved right in the long run or sectarian and aloof and to be blamed if a pro-memorandum coalition is somehow cobbled together?
Time will tell, but the KKE is certainly correct to stress the key role of extra-parliamentary struggles versus horse-trading.
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Francis King
Francis King

May 10th, 2012, 10:51 am #5

Syriza is trying to find a way to reject "austerity" without precipitating a collapse of the Greek economy. That is an attractive idea, even though it may be quite illusory, as the KKE argues. However, the more radical measures proposed by the KKE almost certainly would bring about the final collapse of the Greek economy, leading, inexorably, to the very austerity (in a much more chaotic form) that Greek left voters want to avoid. That is probably why the Syriza vote has increased dramatically, while the KKE vote has remained fairly stable. I can't help thinking that if (when) Syriza fails to resolve the crisis, it won't be the KKE which benefits.
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Perry Striker
Perry Striker

May 11th, 2012, 7:06 pm #6

Surely, Francis you are answering your own questions? The reasons why the KKE is not going to hook up with Syriza are precisely because they are attempting to deliver economic and social solutions within the framework of capitalism and the European Union.

The inherent irreconcilability of contradictions of the crisis of capitalism and imperialism are being expressed extremely sharply in Greece (and the other "southern" economies). In such circumstances, the only realistic way forward is an anti-austerity programme making deep inroads into the wealth and power of the monopoly capitalist class, potentially opening up the road to socialist revolution, and the establishment of a social and economic system run by and interests of the majority working class.

That is the programme of the KKE. NOT to exhaust the last remaining potentials of bankrupt capitalism, leading to further austerity, as Francis suggests.

In such circumstances, political parties are forced to line up: either on the side of capitalism and ongoing crisis; or, on the side of anti-capitalism measure. The gap between the KKE and Syriza is the same as the gap between the KKE and New Democracy and Pasok.

The tendency of some of the contributors on this site to rate the role and potential of Syriza (including failed ex-euro-communists) is typical of the opportunism and reformism which destroyed our own CPGB.
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paul fauvet
paul fauvet

May 12th, 2012, 5:34 pm #7

Clearly Perry Striker would have been at home in the comintern in the early 1930s. How long can it be, I wonder, before he starts calling Syriza social-fascists?

His claim that it's either capitalism or anti-capitalism is classic ultra-leftism, of the sort that led to the destruction of the German Communist Party. Fortunately, the threat of fascism in Greece is not yet on a level comparable to Germany in the 1930s. But it is growing alarmingly, and communists underestimate it at their peril.

The question "capitalism or anti-capitalism" presupposes that there is a revolutionary situation in Greece, or perhaps that there's one just round the corner.

Doesen't look like that to me. A leap from the current economic crisis to socialist revolution is utopian.

Surely a responsiible attitude (in the tradition of popular fronts, if you like), would be for the KKE to reach out to Syriza and to bits of PASOK. in order to build a workable anti-austerity alliance.

Instead the KKE prefers glorious isolation, a position that I fear will cost it dearly at the next elections.
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Francis King
Francis King

May 12th, 2012, 9:12 pm #8

Surely, Francis you are answering your own questions? The reasons why the KKE is not going to hook up with Syriza are precisely because they are attempting to deliver economic and social solutions within the framework of capitalism and the European Union.

The inherent irreconcilability of contradictions of the crisis of capitalism and imperialism are being expressed extremely sharply in Greece (and the other "southern" economies). In such circumstances, the only realistic way forward is an anti-austerity programme making deep inroads into the wealth and power of the monopoly capitalist class, potentially opening up the road to socialist revolution, and the establishment of a social and economic system run by and interests of the majority working class.

That is the programme of the KKE. NOT to exhaust the last remaining potentials of bankrupt capitalism, leading to further austerity, as Francis suggests.

In such circumstances, political parties are forced to line up: either on the side of capitalism and ongoing crisis; or, on the side of anti-capitalism measure. The gap between the KKE and Syriza is the same as the gap between the KKE and New Democracy and Pasok.

The tendency of some of the contributors on this site to rate the role and potential of Syriza (including failed ex-euro-communists) is typical of the opportunism and reformism which destroyed our own CPGB.
Well Perry, if by "opportunism and reformism" you mean distinguishing between non-revolutionary parties of the left and the right, and allying with the left against the right, then by 1935, the CPGB was beyond all redemption, as it was running round actively supporting Labour candidates almost everywhere.

As for Greece, although I doubt that a Syriza-led administration would be able to deal with the crisis without some significant decline in working class living standards (if not through cuts, then through devaluation and inflation when Greece gets pushed out of the euro), I don't for one moment imagine that the KKE would be able to implement its programme without an even greater fall in living standards, if only because the KKE programme would entail even greater economic disruption.
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Zorba
Zorba

May 14th, 2012, 2:20 am #9

I tend to share most of Francis King's assessment although from a slightly different perspective perhaps. In the immediate situation many Greeks of the left (and beyond which is a crucial point) will not support withdrawal from the eurozone far less the EU.
The KKE is undoubtedly correct in its overall analysis of the whole EU project and correct to criticise those who believe that it's possible to reject the EU-imposed bailout and somehow be forgiven by the German and French bankers who, it is fair to say, have a not inconsiderable clout within the EU institutions.
I think the KKE is also quite correct to say that this strategy of Syriza is illusory. However, the point is how do you dispel illusions? Could there be some way of the KKE participating in an anti-bailout alliance and escalate the level of confrontation with the EU and thereby also highlight the contradictions of the Syriza strategy?
I'm honestly not sure. Clearly the KKE believes not and that it is better to suffer short term losses (again I think FK is correct and opinion polls show Syriza support ballooning) in order to reinforce its longer term credibility. This may be a risky strategy and a lost opportunity. Again, I don't know for sure but we will pretty soon find out.
However, it is not simply the KKE that have suggested that Greece should not remain within the eurozone but an increasing number of bourgeois economists. The country simply cannot service the "bailout" (which in any case is for the bankers not the Greek people)when its productive economy has all but collapsed. So a Syriza government (even a Pasok/ND one) may still find itself forced outside the eurozone at some point. So I think the point about the KKE alternative causing "economic disruption" is beside the point, whatever happens next will disrupt the economy the question as always is who will pay for it and who will blink first.
Interesting times.

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Hasanyi_Janos
Hasanyi_Janos

May 14th, 2012, 10:24 pm #10

Clearly Perry Striker would have been at home in the comintern in the early 1930s. How long can it be, I wonder, before he starts calling Syriza social-fascists?

His claim that it's either capitalism or anti-capitalism is classic ultra-leftism, of the sort that led to the destruction of the German Communist Party. Fortunately, the threat of fascism in Greece is not yet on a level comparable to Germany in the 1930s. But it is growing alarmingly, and communists underestimate it at their peril.

The question "capitalism or anti-capitalism" presupposes that there is a revolutionary situation in Greece, or perhaps that there's one just round the corner.

Doesen't look like that to me. A leap from the current economic crisis to socialist revolution is utopian.

Surely a responsiible attitude (in the tradition of popular fronts, if you like), would be for the KKE to reach out to Syriza and to bits of PASOK. in order to build a workable anti-austerity alliance.

Instead the KKE prefers glorious isolation, a position that I fear will cost it dearly at the next elections.
Yiannis Bournos of Syriza clearly thinks that the German government is bluffing and can be made to continue bailing out Greece without it making spending cuts. I doubt that that is the case. In any case, his back-up plan sounds like fantasy as it is to seek money from China and Russia.

I really doubt that Syriza has a workable program of any kind. KKE may be better off not goining into a government which will be a likely fiasco.
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