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Liberating Greece from Neoliberalism

See also: Greek 'political blackmail' of EU won't work anymore, says top Merkel party member (1/1/15) on PressTV, Austerity Measures in Greece and the Eurozone. Repealing “Flawed Economic Policies” (31/12/14) by William Black on Global Research, Angela Merkel hails Greece austerity measures (9/10/12) on PressTV.

Neoliberal Policies in Greece. Liberating the Country from the Grip of its Creditors

Previously published on Global Research (2/1/15).

Editorial introduction: The savage cutbacks of social services and government employment demanded of the newly elected left-wing Greek SYRIZA government by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is barely an order of magnitude less brutal than the civil war inflicted upon the Greek people in 1944 by the British and former Nazi collaborators. Given the support given to neo-Nazis by the same vested interests served by the IMF barely 1,000km away in Ukraine, what guarantee can there be that the Greek people will be any less brutalised than they were in 1944?

As has been shown elsewhere, 1 it was not for lack of courage and steadfastness that the Greek people were defeated after 1944. There is every reason to hope that, in 2014, the Greek people will be able to stand up to the New World Order Tyranny of the IMF.

However, a complicating factor is mass immigration, which in Greece and many other countries, destroys the quality of life of the working and middle classes. Unfortunately, in Greece, the most outspoken opponents of mass immigration are the modern day ideological bedfellows of the Nazi collaborators of the late 1940s.

Even before the dissolution of the Greek parliament and the ensuing electoral campaign, International and European powers have launched a campaign of lies and threats aimed at cowering the Greek electorate away from voting for SYRIZA (United Social Front) in the upcoming general election to take place on 25 January. Seconded by the mainstream European media, the "leaders", Juncker, Merkel, Hollande, Renzi, or Schäuble, are preparing yet another brutal intervention into Greece's home affairs, a country they have already turned into a mess of social ruin through the inhuman and barbarous austerity policies they have dictated.

The result will be decisive in the social war against the vast majority of the European population!

The Committee for the Abolition of the Third World Debt (CADTM) does not have the least doubt about the real intentions of those who have used Greece as a European testing ground for the most extreme neoliberal policies and used the Greeks as guinea pigs for social, political and economic shock therapies. We must be ready for an escalation of their campaign. They cannot allow that SYRIZA gain victory and be emulated throughout Europe! They will stop at nothing because they are well aware that the result of the Greek elections will be decisive in the social war they are waging against the vast majority of the European population!

It is because the stakes are so high that we can expect the "leaders" of Europe and of Greece to refuse to accept the result of the poll which, for the first time in Greek history, should bring victory to the Greek left. They will certainly try to stifle the left wing government that will be the democratic result, because its eventual success will be interpreted as tremendous encouragement, to the workers and peoples of Europe, to resist.

The CADTM, which has always been alongside the Greek people in their struggle against austerity and the grave infringements of their social and democratic rights, again calls on European and worldwide social movements and radical parties to unflinchingly support the resistance and struggle of the Greek people. The illegitimate, illegal and odious debt that the Greek people have been burdened with is not their debt. The CADTM considers that the creation of an international popular commission to audit Greece's debt in order to identify the illegitimate, illegal and/or odious parts that should not be repaid, would set a precedent and nourish the debate on debt repudiation in all the peripheral European countries.

To support the Greek people and the Greek left in their struggle to liberate the country from the grip of creditors and from the dictatorship of the markets is now the duty, not only of grass roots activists, but also of every European citizen that refuses this Europe of austerity that produces misery, racism and barbarism.

Footnotes

1See About the Greek Civil War.

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Comments

While I welcome the end of the neo-liberal regime, I'm very skeptical about their replacements. So much so, that I would think it better NOT to elect Syriza, and that the current neo-liberals would be better.

The election of Syriza will pose two problems.

Firstly, they are radical left, which is a risk for the Greek nation of people. They may result in worse conditions and disenfranchisement of political alternatives.

Secondly, their failure will result in the second biggest party, Golden Dawn getting support, and potentially taking power afterwards, and I don't think they are ready either. That, or Greeks will resort to the centrist parties.

Greece needs a new political alternative, which can both deal with the economic and immigrant crisis.

The problem need a deeper solution

DennisK,

If you had read the article, About the Greek Civil Warlinked to in two places above, and also previously posted to the ABC Radio National Web site on 11 July 2011, you would know that it was the 'radical left' of Greek politics, and not the right, who has fought against tyranny and foreign invasion, including that by Nazi Germany from 1941 until 1944.

In 2014, those, who in previous generations would have fought as partisans against the Nazis, are members of SYRIZA. The only hope that Greeks have to stop their country's economy being ruined by the criminal dictates of the IMF is for the election of a SYRIZA government in the forthcoming parliamentary elections.

How any supporter of Candobetter would want to see the Golden Dawn and not SYRIZA win in the forthcoming Greek elections is a mystery to me.

Hi James,

I didn't write an endorsement for either party, and I'm not a cheerleader of the neo-liberal technocracy.

The politics and situation in Greece is something I'm familiar with, and to some extent, having family there, personally interested in.

I can tell you, having spent some time there, that Greece is pretty much in a depression, though no one would dare use that word, lest they reveal the true nature of the situation.

But I don't agree that somehow the political players today, are the heirs of the 1930s. It is in error, I believe, to assume that the radical left element are as those 70 years ago. While many would like to think they are the bearers of the torch of Marxism, Fascism, Socialism, Nazism, what have you, what exists today is radically different. We are talking two generations removed here, with very, very outdated ideals. These ideals were old even then. They simply cannot deal with the 21st century.

Compare what the left and right tell you (personally) today, and try to reconcile it with the ideas their grandparents had. You'll see they are different. Reading Marx, and hearing someone from a Socialist party tell you what Marxism is, you'll leave puzzled at how different it is. Same with Neo Nazis. The Nazis of the 30s would have probably sent half of todays swastica toting neo nazis to prison,

Saying that Syriza would have fought foreign invasion is very speculative. Besides, who is invading Greece today? What are the threats?

Implementation is everything. If you can't create a workable implementation, then your politics isnt worth much, no matter how nice your ideals sound. I have my doubts about Syrizas implementation, and I think that failed implementation would result in further problems.

Iceland told the bankers to get stuffed, and they left it at that which is why it worked.

The economic conditions in Greece cannot be remedied by any party unless it is able to effectively withdraw Greece from the EU. Greece is broke and despite austerity measures, continues to slide further into debt. The Coalition parties in Australia claim that we are on the same road, but this is completely untrue. A sovereign nation that issues its own currency can NEVER go broke. Greece does not issue its own currency. Australia does. Bill Mitchell's MMT blog deals with this idea in detail.

Greece should default on it's debt, leave the EU and return to using the drachma.

http://real-economics.blogspot.com.au/2015/01/palast-on-greek-elections.html

Greg Palast seems to see the looming problem with Syriza, namely the ineffectiveness of their reforms. Jonathon Larson's comments below ring very true. Europeans do believe that being part of the EU, or some superstate is a sign of 'maturity' of 'having made it'. I heard this attitude all over touring Europe, and it is pretty much almost a religious belief.


One of the more puzzling phenomenon is the enthusiasm for the EU I have witnessed in my highly educated European friends. Once I carefully explained the damage certain to be caused by the Maastricht monetary agreements to some friends from Finland who looked at me as if I clearly didn't get it. For them, joining the Euro was a chance to prove to the world that formerly poor, isolated, colonized Finland had arrived in the big time. I am certain that the same sort of thinking was repeated in many of the other small entrants to the EU from Estonia to Portugal. This was a point of national pride. Unfortunately, the neoliberalism of Maastricht was designed to take advantage of the small and weak who were joining a yacht club they could clearly not afford to join. The fact that income inequality is a global phenomenon pretty much proves how effective these economic policies are in redistributing wealth upward.


Of course, the poster child for all the bad things that can happen to the little fish who joined the EU is Greece. Now they are about to elect a government that promises to abandon the EU-mandated austerity measures that are crippling their country. But notice, they still want to stay in the club. Veblen was right—the desire for status emulation is such a powerful motivation, it is even more powerful at times than the survival instincts. Example xxxx is Greece's Syriza Party. Palast mocks this silliness so much better than I could (see below).