Greek Solidarity Campaign update 4

Posted: June 19, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Politics, Society | Tags: |Leave a comment »

Coalition of Resistance June 19, 2012



Recreate Greece  – Action – Liberal Alliance (DX-DRASI-FS)



Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS)



Ecologist Greens (OP)



I Don’t Pay Movement



Anticapitalist Left Cooperation for the Overthrow (ANTARSYA)



9.  Some personal comments on the election results from Vangelis, who has been sending the GSC daily reports from Greece: “The Left in Total received 1.9m votes in May which has now increased to 2.3m ie by 20%. ND made illegal immigration its main point in the last week alongside the costing of economic measures.  From 2.25m votes in May ND and PASOK together increased their total vote by 10% to 2.5m votes.  Syriza in the final week stated the following, in Proto Thema which the media replayed and replayed -immigrants would get unemployment benefits and would get to bring their families to Greece. … The KKE whose slogan was a Strong KKE lost half its electoral base, it is now where Syriza was in 2004 and 2009. It’s now the last party in Parliament with 12 MPs.  The KKE lost severely in the working class districts of Piraeus and central Athens, hovering around 3%.  Abstention became a historic high at 37.5% of the vote; in certain areas like Florina it reached 60%.  The farming areas in Crete switched from PASOK to Syriza.  PASOK lost 1% but around 100,000 votes. GD (fascists) marginally lost 15k but maintained its electoral base in contrast to what the KKE argued that people should ‘correct their voting behaviour’.  IG lost many votes that probably went to ND after its anti-immigrant turn.  LAOS was wiped out and this will be the future of Democratic Left.”

10.              GSC LETTER IN THE GUARDIAN (1 June 2012)

“The Greek people’s democratic rejection of the policies of austerity on 6 May could not be clearer. Christine Lagarde told the Guardian that the Greeks must pay their taxes (It’s payback time: don’t expect sympathy, 22 May; Christine Lagarde’s Greek comments provoke fury, 28 May). This is an issue. Last year alone, $8bn in collectible taxes in Greecewere in arrears – half the country’s annual deficit. But if those of us outside Greece want to comment on this issue for the Greeks, let’s be clear where this money is. In Greece, as in the UK, the problem of tax avoidance and evasion is caused by the wealthiest. The Greek shipping magnates and their families live virtually tax-free. Their shipping assets alone are estimated at $85bn. Fleets are based offshore to avoid taxes, and the wealth is secreted in offshore accounts. In short, they enjoy a position that Christine Lagarde, on her tax-free salary from the IMF, will be familiar with. It is those opposing austerity in Greece who are calling for action to make the wealthy in Greece pay their share. The Greek people voted against austerity and are demanding action on corruption at the top. The progressive, anti-austerity Greek politicians are campaigning for an overhaul of the tax system, for a public inquiry into where the money borrowed went to, and for corrupt MPs to be no longer immune from prosecution.

“The EU memorandums imposed on the Greek people are not democratic, just or humane. They will also fail to restore stability to the euro, as will abandoning Greece, building so-called “walls against contagion”. In 2008, banks in Britain and Iceland were bailed out and nationalised to stop what was feared would be a worldwide collapse of the finance sector. We need similar radical action now. But this time it shouldn’t be to shore up the super rich, but to benefit all society, starting with the interests of the Greek and European “99%”. It is not true that there are no alternatives to austerity. What is true is that there are no alternatives that don’t challenge the right of the 1% to carry on amassing vast wealth and contributing no social benefit. The bravery and determination of the Greek people in the face of bullying and threats from the EU/IMF and World Bank and their own corrupt political and economic leaders should be applauded by all of us.  – Tony Benn and Rachel Newton, Secretary, Greece Solidarity Campaign


11.   UCU (University and College Union) Congress carried this resolution in solidarity with Greece:

“Congress notes the increasing cuts in public services, including education, in countries across Europe and the severe attacks on education workers’ pay and conditions.  Greece is at the cutting edge of the neo-liberal austerity measures that are being introduced across Europe. Greek people face an avalanche of cuts to pay debts incurred by bankers and politicians. These cuts are exacerbating the economic situation.

Congress notes that in Greece: unemployment is 20% overall (50% for young people); public sector workers’ wages have fallen by up to 40%; the minimum wage has been cut by 20%; the EU-ECB-IMF ‘Troika’ imposed an unelected banker as Greek PM; that on 6 May, as soon as they had the chance, Greek electors switched their vote to parties campaigning for a lifting or renegotiation of the debt; Greek workers and students have launched waves of strikes, occupations and mass demonstrations that have rocked the political establishment in Europe.

Congress welcomes the widely-supported development of a European Front to Defend the People of Greece and all those facing austerity. Congress salutes the ordinary Greek people for their collective strength in resisting the damage of austerity by campaigning and giving each other practical support. Congress is appalled by the vicious severity of public sector cuts, including education cuts, imposed on Greece.

Congress believes: workers and students in Europe are being made to pay for a crisis they didn’t create; investment in education and training remains one of the best ways out of the current economic and social crisis; it is important to encourage education union solidarity across Europe.  

Congress resolves: to support the EI/ETUCE action and campaign on the economic crisis; to publicise the ‘Appeal for solidarity with the people of Greece’ and to explore further ways of developing links with Greek education workers; to continue to campaign for progressive alternatives such as the Financial Transactions Tax; to publicise the issue of Greek solidarity and encourage debates about the Greek crisis at every level of the union; to support all broad-based UK initiatives of solidarity with Greek workers and students; to organise a speaking tour of Greek strikers in 2012; to develop links with Greek education unions by exchanges and visits involving lay members; to ask UCU branches to twin with Greek union branches/villages/towns – if necessary, with the advice of a Greek regional university union branch and the European Front, in order to offer our solidarity and support; to publicly support the Jubilee Debt Campaign call for the immediate cancellation of Greek debt by the Troika, and to invite EI/ETUCE, other trades unions, professional bodies and civil society organisations to support this call.”

αλληλεγγύη και φιλία – solidarity and friendship – Paul Mackney – Chair, Greece Solidarity Campaign<

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