This article raises a number of important issues which doubtless will be of interest to the comrades of the Former CPGB including the sectarianism of Syriza which so far has not been fully discussed or acknowledged on this site (although projections of this phenomenon on to KKE have often been made) the important issue of "the dead-end rationale of the lesser evil" (see below), and the Trojan Horse of "Left Unity".
THE KKE WILL CONTINUE THE STRUGGLE FOR THE OVERTHROW OF CAPITALIST BARBARITY EVEN MORE DECISIVELY
Article of Giorgos Marinos (member of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the KKE)
The KKE extends its warm thanks to the Communist Parties, communist men and women, as well as to a large number of other militants from all over the world who expressed their sincere solidarity with and support for our party, because they appreciated the tough class battles which it had waged over a long period of time, before and during the capitalist crisis.
Our party will continue to be worthy of their confidence and will escalate the struggle for the interests of the working class, the popular strata, for the overthrow of capitalist barbarity, for socialism. Because the goal for the abolition of the exploitation of man by man, the founding principle of the communist parties, demands it.
The developments in Greece and particularly the two recent elections triggered many discussions regarding the KKE and the left, the role of the left governments, the stance of the communists.
Some forces which still use the title communist party despite the fact that they are on a course of social-democratic mutation and other forces which speak in the name of the left opened a front -in an open or underhand manner- against the KKE, slandering its activity, concealing or distorting its positions, with baseless talk about sectarianism, regurgitating the polemics of the class enemy, adopting and disseminating the positions of SYRIZA.
SYRIZA is a party which is a fanatical supporter of the EU, a vehicle for the utopian view concerning capitalism with a human face. It is comprised of right-wing opportunist forces, detritus from the class struggle, marginal ultra-left (Trotskyist and former Maoist) groups and a significant section of officials from the social-democratic PASOK.
The forces which have opened a front against the KKE, amongst them the apparatus of the European Left Party and other organizations-supporters of the caricature of 21st century socialism, have been exposed because the KKEs activity and its contribution to the revolutionary struggle refutes them. But their stance is damaging for the working class, the popular strata and youth because they take the side of the opponents of the communists. The communists who consistently struggle against the bourgeois class, imperialism and militantly oppose the assimilation of the workers into the objectives of capital.
We call on the communist men and women, the workers who follow the developments in Greece and are interested in the course of the class struggle to come to a better understanding regarding the strategy and tactics of the KKE, its history and struggles. They should judge its positions based on specific ideological-political criteria and not on rumours and baseless slander. They will then be able to discern that the attack on the strategy of the KKE and its alliance policy and the various laughable claims regarding sectarianism andisolationism have been initiated by bourgeois forces or forces which have in reality rejected Marxist-Leninist principles, the need for socialism, the essence of the class struggle which is meaningful when it is linked to working class-popular power.
They will be able to discern that these forces follow a political line of bourgeois management which is concealed behind talk of a left solution, sowing illusions about the humanization of capitalism, with very negative consequences for the struggle of the workers.
What is worst of all is that these forces which craftily attack the KKE and sometimes pretend to be its friend, are trying to exploit this election result, which is negative for the people, in an attempt to support their dangerous claims.
REGARDING THE DEVELOPMENTS IN GREECE
In Greece, the deep capitalist crisis of capital over-accumulation which has entered its fourth year, combined with the crisis in other EU member-states, provokes the intense aggressiveness of the monopolies and their political representatives and is expressed by the anti-people strategy as a whole. The memoranda, which were signed between the Greek governments, the EU, the ECB and the IMF are a part of this strategy.
The deterioration of the situation of the working class and popular strata caused by capitals offensive, the development of the class struggle with the decisive contribution of the KKE and the class-oriented movement, led to the significant erosion of the social-democratic PASOK which had implemented the cruel anti-people political line for many years. It led to the erosion of the liberal ND party and of the two-party system as a whole which lost the ability to trap popular forces which it had previously possessed.
On this basis, the reformation of the political scene is being promoted which is supported by the bourgeois class, the European Union and other imperialist mechanisms to more effectively manage the capitalist crisis in capitals favour, to impede the class struggle, to attack the KKE and the class-oriented movement.
A basic element of the reformation of the political scene is the creation of two poles- the centre-right based on ND and the centre-left with SYRIZA at its core together with the participation of a large section of PASOK officials who bear criminal responsibilities regarding the implementation of the anti-people political line in the previous years.
Greece and the parliamentary elections were utilised as an arena of inter-imperialist competition between the USA, the EU, Germany, andFrance. This was expressed by the stance of the Greek political forces, above all by ND, PASOK and SYRIZA which flirts with France and theUSA.
The multi-facetted and deep assimilation of Greece in the European Union, the deep prolonged crisis combined with the manifestation of the recession in the Eurozone made the intervention of the EU, IMF and USA extremely necessary in order to head off every tendency for the radicalization of the movement in Greece and its international impact.
The systematic statements of the officials of the imperialist organizations as well as the articles of the foreign press, including the appeal of the German Financial Times for a vote for ND, reinforced the polarization and the blackmailing of the people so that they turn to the two poles of bourgeois management.
THE ASSESSMENT OF THE ELECTION RESULTS
The KKE made an enormous effort, and received 8.5%, 536,000 votes and 26 MPs in the May 6 elections but it was not complacent. It spoke clearly about the plan to weaken the party, it predicted and fought against the organized anti-KKE offensive with all its strength and remained on its feet with losses of 4% of its electoral strength, a reduction of votes and MPs, receiving 4.5%, 277,000 votes and 12 MPs.
What had occurred between the two elections? What dilemmas had been posed by the bourgeois system to trap the popular forces? The CC of the KKE made an initial assessment of the result, which is now being discussed in the party organizations and in meetings with friends of the party in order to gather the collective experience and so that it can be used in the final assessment. In order to understand the political atmosphere which prevailed in the second election, it is important to bear in mind that according to the electoral laws the first party receives a bonus of 50 MPs (of the 300 in the Greek Parliament) so that the attempt to form a government can be facilitated. In the first elections (in which the KKE received 8.5%) the difference between the 1st (ND) and 2nd party (SYRIZA) was 2.1% and the struggle for the first position created conditions of intense polarization.
The CC of the KKE made the following assessment: The significant losses of the KKE which occurred do not reflect the impact of its positions and its activity. This happened 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 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 ROLE OF SYRIZA
The forces which support covertly or openly- SYRIZA and slander the KKE are obliged to explain to the members and cadre of their parties, to the working class and popular strata the following issues:
Why do they conceal that the common element in the political line of ND, PASOK SYRIZA and the other parties, apart from the KKE, is their support for the EU the inter-state imperialist union which implements a proven anti-people strategy and was formed and developed in line withthe interests of the monopoly groups and the multi-nationals?
Why do they conceal the fact that a section of the bourgeois class, strong financial groups which control newspapers, radio and television channels supported SYRIZA decisively this was also true of the state radio and TV channels, while the president of the Greek industrialists proposed a national unity government with the participation of this party?
Why do they conceal the fact that during the course of the elections and especially after the May 6 elections SYRIZA abandoned even the sloganeering phraseology regarding the cancellation of the memorandum and the loan agreement, the nationalization of enterprises etc and adjusted its programme completely to the needs of bourgeois management?
Why do they conceal the fact that a large section of the most corrupt PASOK officials from the regional authorities, municipalities, trade unions and state apparatus played a leading role in manipulating popular forces and PASOK voters by exerting multi-facetted pressure in favour of SYRIZA?
Why do they conceal the fact that there is a plan underway to regroup social-democracy with SYRIZA at its core? Social-democracy has proven to be very useful for the bourgeois class in order to erode the radical consciousness of the people in favour of the EU one-way street and to attack and control the labour movement.
Why do they conceal the fact that this party continually utilised anti-communism, when at the same time it was making appeals for left unity,? At a central election meeting of SYRIZA, with its President in attendance, the Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Zizek, in a vulgar display of anti-communism, said that This is, if I understand it correctly, what KKE, which is basically the party of the people who are still alive because they forgot to die, are telling you and received enthusiastic applause from the audience!
Why do they conceal the fact that it used every kind of dirty tactic against the KKE in order to seize the peoples votes in its quest for the first position in the elections or the ability also to form a one-party government?
Dirty tactics which included amongst other things supplying bourgeois journalists with black false propaganda about differing views in the CC and PB of the KKE regarding the stance in relation to SYRIZA and the participation in a government of bourgeois management. The experience from the conditions in which the KKE fought in these elections is valuable for every CP and for this reason we inform them about the provocations which occurred including the provocation on Twitter where the mechanisms created a fake account of the KKE which theythen used to call on the people to vote for SYRIZA.
Why do they conceal the fact that a few days before the elections the President of SYRIZA met with diplomatic personnel from the G20 countries in Athens in order to establish a climate of trust? With whom really? With the club of the strongest capitalists and imperialists in the world.
And there is more. SYRIZAs staff presented the political line of Obama to the Greek people as a realistic policy for the management of the crisis in the peoples favour. Meanwhile it also falsely claimed that the election of the social-democrat Hollande would be a factor which would bring a new wind and pro-people changes in Europe. At the same time the social-democratic government in France was calling on the Greek people to submit to the commitments to the EU and despite the inter-imperialist competition- is participating together with the German government in order to prepare new anti-people measures which are being planned in the EU for economic and political integration.
These facts cannot be bypassed. The KKE does not need to resort to conspiracy theories. The truth cannot be hidden. This is of major importance so that every worker who is interested in the situation in Greece and the role of the political forces can form a viewpoint.
For a long period myths were fostered regarding the role of SYRIZA in the labour and peoples movement. It was presented in a misleading way as a strong opposition force when in reality it had either a nonexistent or a minimal contribution to the development of the struggle in the factories, businesses, and to the organization of strikes and other mass mobilizations.
In reality, this party was the tail of the General Federation of Greek Workers (GSEE) and the Federation of Public-sector Workers (ADEDY) which operate as instruments of capital, vehicles of employer and government led trade unionism and class collaboration.
The stance of SYRIZA in the movement of the squares, which was transient, had a limited mass character and was a breeding ground for reactionary views, was opportunistic and integrated into the plan of those who sought to seize the reins of bourgeois management. SYRIZA bears serious responsibilities because it shared the squares of the indignants with the fascist abomination Golden Dawn which presented itself (along with other nationalist forces) as an anti-memorandum force, promoting vulgar and reactionary slogans in order to manipulate the indignation of the workers.
THE STRUGGLE OF THE KKE
The offensive against the KKE after the elections is not led merely by the various well-known Trotskyist groups but also by the forces of the European Left Party, like the Portuguese Left Block and the Italian Communist Refoundation. The Presidents of these two parties could not resist showing European opportunisms aversion to the KKE.
The stance of certain forces that blame the KKE because ND was able to form a government is equally provocative. These forces, however, conceal the fact that the only party which truly came in conflict with ND and PASOK is the KKE because, unlike SYRIZA, it is not committed to the EU, NATO, big capital and its power. It does not foster parliamentary illusions and it tells the people the truth about the forces that support the bourgeois management. Our party has been struggling for years against the intimidating dilemmas right-wing or anti right-wing, centre-left- centre-right and fights against the dead-end rationale of the lesser evil which has led communist parties in Europe into becoming the tail of social democracy.
The effort to slander the KKE will fail because its initiators will be totally exposed as the propaganda of sectarianism and isolationism,which is used by the forces that attack our party, is refuted by the leading role of the KKE, the KNE but also of PAME, of the class oriented trade unions, of the militant rallies of the popular strata and the youth in dozens of strikes at a nationwide, sectoral and company-level, in hundreds of multifaceted mobilizations that rallied thousands of working people who were fighting for demands that express the rights of the workers and come in conflict with the power of capital, the capitalist barbarity.
These significant achievements are not cancelled out by the election results which are negative for the people.
They constitute a valuable experience and legacy for the escalation of the class struggle till the end.
The KKE has opposed the opportunistic welding together of the leaderships from above and insists on the social alliance between the working class, the urban and rural popular strata with the participation of women and youth. It rejects the cooperation for the formation of a left government to manage capitalism and insists on the formation of the socio-political alliance that will fight for the problems of the people, that will come into conflict with the monopolies and imperialism and will direct its struggle to the overthrow of the capitalist barbarity, the conquest of working class and peoples power.
The strategy that promises a better future for the working people and the unemployed through a so-called left or progressive government, while the power of capital and the capitalist ownership of the means of production remain intact, is dangerous. This strategy has been tested and been proven to be bankrupt. It led Communist parties into assimilation and even dissolution.
This strategy conceals the fundamental issue. It conceals that the problem of unemployment, which is sharpening in an uncontrolled fashion, cannot be solved as long as the power and the wealth that the working class produces remain in the hands of capitalists, as long as capitalist anarchy and the profit motive exist.
The contemporary needs of the people cannot be satisfied since capitalism is in its last stage, the imperialist stage, and is totally reactionary. The difficulties in the reproduction of capital, the competition of monopolies for their dominance reinforce the attack aimed at reducing the price of labour power, and increasing the rate of exploitation. Even the small gains require very tough conflicts with the forces of capital as the 7-month heroic strike of the steelworkers in Aspropirgos demonstrates, which has been consistently supported by the KKE and PAME along with thousands of working people in Greece and abroad who express their class solidarity.
The daily struggle for the right to work, for the protection of the unemployed, for salaries and pensions, for free healthcare, welfare and education, the daily struggle against imperialist wars, for the disengagement from the imperialist unions, for peoples sovereignty, for democratic rights is inextricably linked with the struggle for the overthrow of capitalism.
The principled stance of the KKE stresses that a revolutionary party cannot have two faces, cannot not negate its strategy, its struggle forworking class-peoples power, for socialism in order to snatch votes in parliamentary elections by supporting management formations which facilitate the system.
The KKE told the truth to the people. It called on them to support the party in order to strengthen it, so that it could contribute decisively to the prevention of the anti-people measures, to the regroupment and strengthening of the workers and peoples movement, to the development of militant struggles, to pave the way for radical changes.
The KKE swam against the tide, as it has done at other times over crucial political issues when it exposed, amongst other things, the character of the counterrevolution, of the overthrow of socialism and the imperialist character of the EU, when if fought against the EU, when it opposed the Treaty of Maastricht, when it condemned the imperialist interventions and the pretexts that justified them etc.
In this direction the KKE struggled in the elections against the current of fear and fatalism, of the various threats ranging from the expulsion from the Eurozone to the fear about 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, which are connected to disengagement from the EU and NATO, the unilateral cancellation of the debt, and socialisation i.e. the government of working class-peoples power. It posed the government of the workers and peoples power against the government ofbourgeois management. It fought this battle 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 concerning the everyday problems, which are increasingly sharpening, for the prospect of working class-peoples 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-peoples power, the expansion and deepening of its ties to the working class, the poor popular strata, remains the goal of its new activity amongst the people so that they remain upright and are not broken by the new hazards which await them.
The strategy of the KKE has been confirmed by the developments on a daily basis. It is a strategy based on the communist principles; based on the laws of the class struggle it sets the goal, the path and the preconditions in order to resolve the basic contradiction between capital and labour, in order to resolve the central problem of power and abolish the exploitative relations of production in conditions that capitalism suffers from its irreconcilable contradictions, becomes more reactionary and dangerous and no management formula can provide a pro-people solution. With this strategy, with this line of struggle the KKE has tirelessly contributed to the effort to regroup the communist movement on a revolutionary basis; it encourages and supports the struggle of the communists, the anti-imperialist struggle all over the world, it strengthens the internationalist solidarity while at the same time it undertakes its responsibility for the development of the class struggle at national level.
Our party is very exacting in the self-critical assessment of its course. It stresses that it is not enough to have a correct strategy and militancy. It studies its weaknesses so as to become more effective in questions of political guidance, improve the ideological-political education, accelerate the party building in factories, workplaces, peoples neighborhoods, strengthen the class oriented movement, so that the participation in trade unions and other mass organizations increases and new forces join the struggle.
The KKE continues its struggle concerning all the problems of the people with an even greater sense of responsibility and decisiveness. It focuses on the struggle against the anti-people taxation policy, for collective bargaining agreements, for salaries and pensions, for the protection of the unemployed, for healthcare, welfare and education. At the same time it prepares its forces in the face of the danger of an imperialist war against Syria and Iran.
It fights against the anti-people policy of ND, PASOK and the Democratic Left which emerged from a split of SYRIZA and is part of the plan for the left manipulation of the people. It carries out a more organized struggle against the left illusions of SYRIZA, strengthens its struggle against the fascist Golden Dawn.
We had a long time ago informed many communist parties that the attack against the KKE will intensify. Many comrades know that the bourgeois class, the state and para-state mechanisms tested means for the repression and the provocations against the KKE and PAME and now we need to be very well-prepared in order to deal with the escalation of the attack against the party.
We continue our struggle. We are trying to become more effective in the organization and the development of the class struggle.
The reduction of the electoral strength of the KKE does not negate the decisive advantages that our party has achieved with a great effort. It does not negate the power it has within the trade unions, the mass organizations, the workers and peoples movement its prestige in the working class, the confidence that the people have in it in the every day struggles regardless of whether it was expressed in the elections.
Thus, the forces that openly or covertly seek to interpret the election result in an arbitrary fashion in order to undermine the strategy and the tactics of the KKE as well as its role in the international communist movement will be judged by the revolutionary communists, by the working class.
There are more than enough forces to manage the system. What the people need are real communist parties that will not manage the capitalist barbarity in the name of the governmental left and in the name of realistically accepting the negative correlation of forces. In this way you pave the way for the forces of capital and precious time is wasted, for which the working class and the popular strata will pay a high price.