Rebel Youth presents this graphic on the latest Greek elections to illustrate the percentage of the votes but also to show how the supposed clear dividing line 'for or against the memorandum' is actually a misleading dichotomy (in this case placing the ultra-right and the KKE together).
The CC of the KKE met on 18th June 2012 and discussed the first assessment of the results of the elections on the 17th of June as well as the developments after the elections. The position of the CC will be discussed in the Party Base Organisations, the organizations of KNE, in meetings with supporters, friends and people who work alongside the party in order to gather opinions and suggestions. The CC will conclude its assessment after gathering the views, the suggestions, the observations regarding both elections (May-June) which will also set the immediate tasks of the party.
Basic assessments regarding the election result
The CC summarizes its first assessment and tables it for discussion:
The election result is negative for the people, which has suffered significant blows by the consequences of the economic capitalist crisis in Greece. The following negative elements are visible:
The significant losses of the KKE which do not reflect the impact of its positions and its activity, in light of the negative developments which had been predicted. It took place under the pressure of the current of illusions and the rationale of the alleged lesser evil, the painless and easy path through which it is allegedly possible to form a government to manage the crisis on the terrain of the monopolies’ power and the assimilation in the EU, which will manage to stop the deterioration of the position of the people. At the same time, there was the impact of the atmosphere of fear and intimidation concerning the expulsion of Greece from the Eurozone.
It occurred in conditions of a systematic and underhand offensive by the ideological-political mechanisms of the system, even through the systematic use of the internet. The main goal was the weakening of the KKE in order to prevent the rise of the labour movement in conditions when the position of the people is deteriorating.
The CC salutes the thousands of working people who withstood the pressure and the blackmail, voted once again for the KKE and responded to the call of the party to prevent the attempt to weaken it. It appreciates and salutes the heroic activity of the members of the party and KNE during this difficult electoral battle.
The increase of New Democracy’s votes which enabled it to become the first party and have the basis to form a coalition government. The policy of ND is anti-labour, anti-people. ND will seek to place the burden of the sharpening of the crisis on to the people ensuring the recovery of capital’s profitability. ND has given to the bourgeoisie and the EU all the necessary assurances concerning its “EU one way-street strategy”. The truth is that the worst is yet to come and not the opposite, as Mr. Samaras claimed. The apparent coalition government will follow the line of the “EU one way-street”, the line of the bourgeois management of the crisis.
The increase of SYRIZA in the second electoral battle despite the fact that its management logic was exposed by its governmental programme. In this programme it omitted any slogans with a radical phraseology concerning the abolition of the Memorandum and the loan agreement, the abolition of privatisations etc which it had put forward in its programme for the elections on May 6th. Thus it became a programme of bourgeois management. It demonstrated that it has a flagrantly accommodating stance in relation to the foreign powers.
In conditions of an intense manipulation of the people it was supported by popular forces that wanted a negotiation of the memorandum, without any confrontation with the EU and the Eurozone.
The consolidation of the electoral strength of the fascist “Golden Dawn”, its transformation into a parliamentary party. In conditions of crisis the “Golden Dawn” constitutes a significant weapon of the bourgeois political system in order to break the workers’ and people’s movement, to facilitate the dangerous equation of fascism with communism as a state ideology and consequently a state practice against the KKE.
The conclusion is that the election result as a whole reflects the tendency of the containment of the class-oriented radicalism that developed during the period of crisis, under the pressure of the current of the rising petty-bourgeois radicalism, guided by the bourgeois ideology and propaganda.
It is obvious that the struggles which developed did not manage to deepen and consolidate radicalism as they did not take on such a mass character and they did not achieve the organisation and the political orientation that the current conditions require. In the final analysis, any positive tendency that developed was influenced by the narrow anti-memorandum content, by the lowering of the expectations in conditions of the expansion of poverty and mass unemployment.
The election result contributes to the promotion and the reinforcement of the plans of the bourgeois class of the country concerning the substitution of the system of the two party rotation by a new bipolar system, the center-right with ND as its core and the center left with SYRIZA as its core, which absorbed a large part of the organised cadres of PASOK.
The plans for the reorganisation of social democracy are being facilitated. Social democracy has proved to be useful for the bourgeois class regarding the erosion of the radical consciousness in favour of the “EU one way-street”, and in order to attack and control the labour movement.
The CC calls on those people who this time preferred to vote for other parties instead of the KKE and especially for SYRIZA to think hard on this, even if it is in retrospect.
It calls on the working people in general to think, in a calm way, about the series of events that took place from the 6th of May until 17th June, which attributed special and unprecedented elements to this electoral battle, which we have not experienced in the post-dictatorship period. Specifically:
- The unprecedented direct, provocative, blatant intervention of the EU Commission in the electoral campaign through its leading figures from Germany, France, Italy, the IMF, the USA, the international media.
Although the people’s movement in Greece has significantly risen over recent years and its demonstrations have had an impact across Europe, it did not have the necessary orientation and the required mass character [and] organisational capability so as to challenge the power of capital.
Although the size of Greece is very small within the framework of the EU, its deep assimilation into the Eurozone, the deep and prolonged crisis combined with the recession in the Eurozone made the intervention of the international alliances within and outside of the EU imperative in order to impede any tendency for the radicalisation of the movement in Greece as well as its international impact.
In this framework there has been a systematic effort to form a bipolar system based on ND and SYRIZA.
At the same time the Greek elections in June were used as an experiment and a tool serving the competition between Germany, France, Spain, Italy in the light of a new sharpening of the crisis. The discussion about amendments to the EU austerity formula did not begin with the Greek elections on 6th May. It had started before in the light of the inter-capitalist contradictions within the EU with the participation of the USA and President Obama in particular.
The Greek elections and the developments were utilised as a lever for the contradictions between them given the EU Summit on 28-29 June, the G7 Summit and the G20 Summit on 18-19 June.
The rhetoric of SYRIZA against Merkel was utilised by a section of Germany’s competitors as well as by the US, against the other section that supported that the abolition of the Memorandum would lead Greece outside the Eurozone and possibly cause its dissolution.
- The statement of SEV (The Hellenic Federation of Enterprises) concerning the necessity for the formation of a coalition government with the anti-memorandum SYRIZA. The obvious support for SYRIZA from a section of the monopoly groups and outlets in the mass media, and from the state radio and TV channels.
- The organized move to SYRIZA of a large section of PASOK cadres especially from the former state enterprises, the banks, public administration as well as other central cadres from PASOK’s apparatus, who took an active part in organizing its electoral struggle and the organized transfer of a large part of PASOK’s electoral base to SYRIZA.
- The unanimous position of all the parties of the “EU one-way street” that a positive wind of change is blowing in Europe and that the amendment of the Memorandum and even of the Loan Agreement could bring relief and a positive prospect for the Greek people and more generally, despite the fact that alternative reactionary outcomes are being planned for so that the reactionary reforms can proceed in its member-states in a unified way: Strengthening of the super powers of the Commission and the sharpening of the contradictions which cause a intensification of the unevenness and centrifugal forces, and even the disintegration of the Eurozone.
The last two electoral campaigns, especially that of June 17th, turned out to be an unparalleled operation for the manipulation of the voters, with blackmails, disinformation, attacks against the party because of its denial to participate in a government of bourgeois management, a manipulation which was unprecedented.
The attack against the party was aimed at its strategy, at its denial to participate in a government for the bourgeois management of the crisis.
It is certain that after the elections much more evidence will come to the fore concerning what went on behind the scenes regarding the competition amongst the monopolies and the utilization of SYRIZA.
Basic assements regarding the work of our party
The political line and predictions of the KKE, which have been borne out by the developments themselves will be a support and significant assistance for the people’s struggle. The people will have the opportunity to draw conclusions.
The radical left-wing people will also have the opportunity to draw conclusions regarding how important it was for them to support the KKE at the ballot box so that it continues to struggle from a stronger position for the regroupment of the movement and to repel the new offensive.
The KKE struggled against the current of fear and fatalism, of the various threats (from the expulsion from the Eurozone to the fear regarding the lack of a government) and the illusions which were systematically fostered by SYRIZA.
It explained to the people the character of the crisis and the pre-conditions for a way out in favour of the workers, the pre-conditions regarding the KKE’s participation in a government, which are connected to disengagement from the EU, the unilateral cancellation of the debt, and socialisation i.e. the government of working class-people’s power. It conducted this struggle taking into account the danger of the electoral cost.
But even the slightest retreat on the part of the party in the face of the pressure for it to participate in a government to manage the crisis would have led to the disarming and retreat-defeat of the labour movement, to the cancellation of the effort for the formation of a strong socio-political alliance, which comes into conflict with the political line of the monopolies, the imperialist unions of the EU and NATO.
It would have negated every effort for the rallying of the people in the struggle for the everyday problems, which are increasingly sharpening, for the prospect of working class-people’s power.
In practice the KKE would have found itself negating the consistency and solidity of its words and deeds, as it would have been asked to carry out damaging and mistaken retreats of a decisive character both regarding its programme and its immediate tasks for the struggle. It is of great importance that in such conditions, when a series of other communist parties are not represented in parliament or have been diffused into social-democratic and opportunist left formations in Europe, the KKE remained standing with less electoral strength in comparison to its wider political influence.
Its strategy regarding the two paths of development, regarding the necessity of the socio-political alliance and the struggle for working class-people’s power, the expansion and deepening of its ties to the working class, the poor popular strata, remains an element of its activity amongst the people so that they remain upright and are not broken by the new hazards which await them.
The large reduction in the electoral strength of the KKE in conditions of severe pressure cannot and must not be interpreted only on the basis of the existing objective reasons. Of course it was decisively influenced by the level of the development of the class struggle, which is not exclusively determined by the party, but by the more general correlation of forces.
The CC and the whole party through a substantial discussion must examine the general subjective factors which in the medium term have influenced the political influence of the party or the subjective weaknesses during the election period regardless of their impact or the extent of their impact on the results of the elections.
We must not be comforted by the fact that our political line has been borne out by the developments. We must examine the level of the party’s ability according to the criterion as to how we respond to the challenges in all conditions.
The 18th congress and the decisions of the CC which followed had underlined those factors, which determine the ability of the party to meet the needs and demands of the struggle: how it operates and works in the working class and popular masses, in the movement and in its organizations, for the building of the party in the working class, in the workplaces and sectors, for the social alliance, in its work amongst the youth and women. It is also connected to issues of ideological-political work in the party and the working class and youth.
The electoral battle can offer more complete conclusions, regarding new aspects which must be better examined and which had an influence to a certain extent on the elections. It is not enough to have a correct strategy and militancy, it is necessary for us to better study how we can acquire the greatest possible competence, which corresponds to the level of our tasks and the rapidly unfolding developments.
We must become more demanding and exacting regarding questions of political guidance, organization, practical orientation and activity in the working class and popular masses.
These weaknesses may not have played a decisive role in the result of the elections, in the specific electoral conditions where it was difficult to stem the current of fear and the chiefly the current of illusions, but they play a substantial role concerning the preparation, readiness, and effectiveness in the face of the new and very complex tasks we have before us.
New tasks for the activity of the party
The KKE will fight and seek to meet with radical working class and popular forces so that the people are not burdened with and do not pay for the political bankruptcy of the government, which they are getting ready to form. Hope must not be lost, the people must acquire strength to impede the new measures to fight for concessions to achieve their own power.
The working class, the poor popular strata, youth and women are at the centre of its attention.
The KKE will fight in order to tackle the wave of disappointment from the continuation of the anti-people political line. In order to prevent the prevalence fear and disappointment, against the consolidation of a reactionary political scene within the framework of parliamentary illusions, in conditions of the deepening of the capitalist economic crisis and the sharpening inter-imperialist competition.
The hope, the militant stance is a matter of personal responsibility for everyone who follows the path of radicalism, and has a leftwing political outlook. It is an issue for which the working class is responsible for.
The historical responsibility of the KKE is not to support a government for the management of the crisis at the expense of the people.
The KKE possesses valuable historical and contemporary experience, the endurance and the ability to adjust the struggle in the conditions of a sudden upsurge of the movement, and also in conditions of the retreat of the labour movement. It can combine the immediate and more general demands, to unite the militant forces around a unified political goal.
- It will struggle together with the people and youth so that Greek territory will not be used and that there will be no Greek participation in a war against Syria and Iran, which is perhaps being prepared for after the US elections.
- The KKE with a compact parliamentary group will table draft laws and amendments regarding the critical problems of the people. Amongst the first of these will be the abolition of the memorandum, the Loan Agreement and all the related laws which were passed by the previous Parliament.
- It will directly support the organization of the labour movement and its allies to deal with the absolutely urgent problems such as the funding of EOPYY (National Organization for the Provision of Health services), the social security funds, the functioning of the health centres and hospitals, the protection of the unemployed, of the households in debt, the relief of the popular families from the heavy indirect and direct taxation, the sharpening problems of the youth, women, elderly and disabled. In the instance of an uncontrolled bankruptcy and a new internal devaluation it will support every popular initiative, solidarity and rally which will help the people to tackle their pressing needs.
- It will seek to rally the people regarding the EU decisions which will meet on the 28-29 of June so that the discussion concerning the super powers of the Commission can begin.
- The CC calls on the workers and employees, the self-employed, the poor farmers to take immediate action through the democratic electoral processes in order to drastically change the negative correlation of forces in the third and second level trade union organizations, and for millions of workers, who up to now have not participated, to take an active part in the base-level trade unions.
The CC calls on the members, friends and supporters of the party and KNE to contribute by studying and tackling the more general weaknesses and shortcomings of a subjective character, which exist regarding our activity in the movement, in the workplaces, and neighbourhoods, in the villages, and in the places of education for the regroupment of the movement.
Without this regroupment of the movement and the construction of a stronger socio-political alliance the people cannot achieve anything and take matters into their own hands. So that they can face the attack, which will intensify against the party on many levels and on many fronts under the pretext of the electoral result.
Athens 18/6/2012 The CC of the KKE