Tag Archives: Greece

Turkey Plays a Dangerous Game

Russia has sent in military hardware to Syria to consolidate its presence in the Levant. The “Carter Doctrine, the imperialist stance codified by former President Jimmy Carter in 1979: that any threat to U.S. oil interests in the Middle East would be met with a military response. Followed by every U.S. president since, this policy has cost millions of working class lives.”  The Carter Doctrine means that any threat to the US’s hold over Middle East (ME) oil is a threat to the US itself. Russia is doubling down on their base in Tartus and expanding into at least one bigger air base in Latakia. The US asked Greece to not allow Russia to use its air space to supply its forces. Russia was borrowing the same excuse of humanitarian imperialism that the US uses of fighting terror, but Greece had no problem defying the US and letting Russia use its airspace.

The simple reason why Greece was able to defy the US comes down to Russia’s TurkStream pipeline. This pipeline provides the potential of vast profit to the Greek ruling class that has been under the iron heel of the US dominated Troika(the EU, IMF, and ECB). As these wars in the Levant and the rest of the ME, like Yemen, continue to escalate, they are indicative of a more and more desperate class of international imperialists that has less and less room to maneuver and are now actively participating in the wars that they were at first fighting by proxy. This is a step towards all out inter-imperialist world war.

The TurkStream pipeline will help to alleviate the reliance on Ukraine as an oil transit route. This is a direct slap in the face of the US and its Nazi servants that overthrew the democratically elected Russian aligned government in the name of democracy. “The outbreak of the Ukraine crisis in November 2013 marked the beginning of the end for the South Stream project. Western countries responded to Russia’s annexation of Crimea in early 2014 with a series of sanctions that targeted a number of Russian officials. The subsequent crash of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 after being shot down over Ukraine in July 2014 led to the sanctions’ expansion, this time against the Russian banks that were financing South Stream.” The members of the working class that were killed in the plane crash became an excuse for the US led West to push its political agenda against Russia. Regardless of who was responsible for the crash, a Ukrainian fighter jet or Separatist missile, the imperialist agenda was all that mattered to the ruling capitalist class.

The danger with Turkey moving closer to Russia is that it “would be able to remove itself from reliance on Ukraine-transited gas”. Turkey is playing a dangerous game because this means that Turkey would not have to rely on US dominated sectors for its natural gas needs. This illustrates a contradiction within the contradiction, since Turkey is a NATO member, it is ostensibly an ally of the US, but Turkey has its own expansionist designs in the Levant as it is hearing echoes of its Ottoman past. So, though in the long term it may, paralleling history, rival Russia for control of the Levant, it can easily pad its coffers now at the expense of being tied to the US leash of power and control. Maximum profits today can mean much more than loyalty and will be able to provide Turkey with the financing necessary for it to carry out its expansionist designs in the Levant through a continuance of financing to the death cult Islamists that it outright supports, the useful enemies of ISIS it allegedly covertly supports, and the vast amount of economic resources that its army needs in order to secure its outright expansionism.

The imperialist proxy war in Ukraine is now in an apparent ceasefire due to the fact that Russia is doing its best to isolate Ukraine from the world’s pipeline chess board. The US and its EU allies were hoping to have the Nabucco pipeline flow natural gas through Turkey, but that project is on hold. “In fact, Russia has the opportunity to export its gas via TAP from the Turkish Stream toward Europe, without Gazprom’s presence in the TAP Consortium and without breaching the TEP rules.” These pipeline wars in the Levant, Syria and Iraq, have caused the deaths of hundreds of thousands of workers, displaced over 10 million workers, and have caused the migration of millions more workers looking for shelter and safety after imperialist financed jihadists and mercenary armies have destroyed their homes.

Another intensification of the inter-imperialist rivalry is between Russia and Israel since Russia is doubling down on the coast of the Eastern Mediterranean it now has access to all of the natural gas that is there. This natural gas is a valuable asset to sell to the EU. Israel is worried since it can no longer bomb Hezbollah at will due to the anti-aircraft missiles which have already shot down at least one Israeli fighter and the interceptor aircraft that Russia has given to Syria.  Israel won’t be able to bomb Syria’s forces or Hezbollah at will if it will begin having its planes continually shot down by AA missiles and intercepter jet fighters.   Israel is now going to be meeting with Russia to discuss what is going to be done about Hezbollah, a valuable Assad ally.

Regardless of how things intensify, it will be the working class that will continue to suffer as millions of refugees continue to lose their homes due to imperialist proxy wars to dominate geostrategic resources. Capitalism needs to be smashed by Communist revolution, and only the Progressive Labor Party can lead this revolution. Our line, our analysis, our international vision of a world based on meeting the needs of the whole of humanity regardless of race or gender is the shining beacon of hope in this run up to open imperialist war. Just as at the dawn of the last world war, two roads are open to humanity, the road of barbarism or the road of Communism. The capitalists want to march us to their parasitical barbarism again and again, but PLP knows that we will be able to organize a Communist revolution to flush capitalism down the toilet of history.

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Syriza Illustrates Why Elections Don’t Seize State Power

Syriza is the new left wing coalition that just won the elections in Greece on a smorgasbord of promises and hope that mirrors the facade parade of Obama’s campaigns. They are reformers, not revolutionaries, yet they are the darlings of the left now. Obama was the singing altar boy of the liberals and phony left just as Syriza is the hallmark of the established left in Greece. Syriza winning the election is not a win for the working class. It will be another win for capitalism that will lead to greater exploitation, misery, and a further extending of capital’s rule over the working class.

Syriza came to power saying that the Troika’s, European Commission, European Central Bank (ECB), and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), destruction of the Greek economy on the back of the working class needs to end. PLP agrees with this point, but we also point out that in order for it to end, capitalism itself needs to end. There is no way to end the misery of the working class under capitalism. Even if some members of the working class can have their misery alleviated, it will come at the expense of other members of the working class. Furthermore, any concessions that a ruling class makes at any time will be taken back again at a later date.

Reforms are a dead end of capitalism. The Troika siphoning off vast amounts of working class wealth to pay off debts that the ruling class created and ensure the profits of the various capitalist investors is part and parcel of capitalism. The international market and the need for capital invested from one area into another, what Lenin termed Imperialism, is of paramount importance. The capital that the ruling classes of the EU funneled into Greece needs to be valorized — regardless of the needs of the working class.
The working class has not taken state power in Greece. They have just won elections and already had to form a coalition with virulently racist fascists. Communists fight racism. Any who say that they are revolutionaries and don’t fight racism are lying. There were a multitude of groups that Syriza could have formed a coalition with, yet they chose right wing racists.

Syriza may be able to renegotiate the terms of debt placed upon the wage slaves in Greece, but they have to cough up their pound of flesh to the Troika’s usury one way or another. They are now pandering to Russia a little and seeing if they can get some relief that way, not a bad idea in the current climate where Russia was just downgraded to almost junk bond status and may have to cut budgets. Even with the downgrading and budget cuts, investing in Greek markets may help Russia increase profit, acquire more assets, and get access to the Mediterranean.

Even with threatening to go to their imperialist rivals, demanding renegotiation of debt, and promising the working class in Greece the moon, Greece is not a socialist, let alone a communist, economy. The working class does not have state power, and they are not transforming the economic basis of society in order to transform all of society. What will happen is that the revisionist left in Greece will end up breaking their promises, shed some crocodile tears, wring their hands, point fingers, and lament as they betray the working class. R. Palme Dutt pointed out they before fascism can rise, a last great hope for democracy must fail; Syriza may be the fail that will usher in even more fascism into Greece where the Neo-nazi Golden Dawn Party gained in the elections.

The working class can either move to the right or to the left. Syriza, at best, will renegotiate the bonds of the Troika’s domination, maybe even ape India by playing off one imperialist rival against another, but will ultimately end up betraying the working class into the waiting arms of one profit seeking group of bosses or another. Either way Syriza falls, the working class will lose if they follow the phony left down dead ends. Our friends in Greece must continue to build PLP so that the road to communist revolution is followed even in this darkest night of capitalism.

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Death To The Fascists! Power To The Workers!

Death to the Fascists! Power to the workers!

The only solution to fascism is Communist Revolution.The correct way to deal with the violent reactionary forces of organized fascism is through the organized violence of the working class united by revolutionary Communist politics. In the absence of such unity, any direct action against the fascists will not end fascism once and for all, though it may inhibit the rate at which fascism grows.

The working class in Greece has been under, arguably, the most direct assault by the forces of capital in the world.  It is bankers protecting their profits that are determining the attacks and directly instituting their rule over the state apparatus. Though other parts of the world have workers dealing with more repression, exploitation, and the direct violence of their own state apparatus, the international capitalists’ need for profit is directly controlling actual state.  It is now beholden to the direct rule of the Troika, the three bodies that fully represent the interests of Western Capital. If there were a sizable mass of people dedicated to Progressive Labor Party’s direct struggle for Communism and the dictatorship of the working class, then there’s a very good chance a revolutionary situation would develop, but, “Without the Party, there can be no revolution”.

A group that’s calling itself revolutionary has shot and killed a fascist member of The Neo-Nazi group Golden Dawn in retaliation for them killing an anti-fascist rapper. As far as we’re concerned, every time a fascist dies, a puppy is born, the world becomes a better place, and the fascists get the only thing they deserve: death. Direct violence against the fascists before they’re able to gain strength and state power is the correct method for dealing with them. Our criticism is simple. Is this an isolated event where an organization is substituting itself for the working class? Is this movement especially targeting racism, the Achilles heel of capitalism, and sexism? Is this an organization using direct revolutionary violence to challenge the capitalists for state power? Can the organization sustain the revolutionary struggle until the final battle with discipline and cohesion?

Lenin’s classic text “Left Wing Communism an Infantile Disorder” points out that first class consciousness, second deep links to the working class, and thirdly the correct political line are necessary, because in order to have the final “victory over the bourgeoisie (it) is impossible without a long, stubborn and desperate war of life and death, a war demanding perseverance, discipline, firmness, indomitableness, and unity of will.” Though PLP has many criticism of the text, it’s insistence on the fight for socialism for example, the essential aspects of it are still relevant.

The primary current of struggle in Greece is Anarchist. This ideology will not and cannot lead to the emancipation of the working class. It will not set up a class dictatorship that’s necessary to sustain the conquest and negation of Bourgeois political power, entitlement, racist and sexist ideology, and right. Though it is commendable to see fascists die by the armed working class taking direct action against them, PLP must take a principled Left position and point out that politics are primary. Without the correct political line, history has clearly illustrated that all the dead fascists in the world won’t lead to Communism. It is perfectly possible to defeat fascism without smashing capitalism, and capitalism can only be ended with a revolution directly for a Communist society.

A second example of the working class fighting fascism is a group of women in Kashmir fighting against Jihadist militants. Unfortunately, they are not struggling for Left ideas, let alone state power, but they are smashing sexist stereotypes of how women should behave in that area. Challenging the state itself to confront Pakistan’s proxy forces is inspiring to women all over the world.  PLP applauds these women who are willing to face death to fight fascism!

 

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Workers are Fighting Fascism in Greece and Bangladesh

The working class all over the world has been under severe attack.  The primary conflict of inter-imperialist rivalry has been intensifying, as can be seen in recent events in Syria and a warming between US and Iran.  Whether or not this is a tipping point in the balance of forces between the US, Russia, and their allies, client states, and proxies, there are examples of the working class fighting back against fascism and for better wages.

 

When a neo-Nazi member of Golden Dawn in Greece murdered an anti-racist, anti-fascist rapper, Pavlos Fyssas, running street battles have continued to ensue.  These street battles are against the backdrop of the Troika’s, representative of the major international capitalists, attack on the working class.  Thousands and thousands of workers have been fired and are in a desperate situation.  The unions, though organizing massive one-day strikes, will not threaten the capitalist class’ hold on state power.  The forces of fascism are growing in order to protect the capitalist state as it seeks to keep the working class oppressed and exploited under the boot of capital. 

 

Unfortunately, the revisionist Communist Party in Greece and other Marxist parties are not the ones leading the charge to smash the fascist Golden Dawn fascists.  The fightback is being led by Anarchists, a reactionary ideology parading as revolutionary and making a resurgence in Greece.   The Progressive Labor Party recognizes the contradiction of supporting the brave anti-fascists who are fighting both the organized force of the state, riot cops, and the forces of fascism.  We do not support Anarchism and recognize it to be a dead end for working class liberation.  We do support and are in solidarity with Anarchists smashing fascists.  PLP’s motto has been and always will be, “Death to the fascists! Power to the workers!”

 

Massive strikes are also occurring in Bangladesh as over 50,000 garment workers rallied in Dhaka.  The workers in Bangladesh provide $20 Billion dollars worth of production international capitalists, yet they make about half of what a Cambodian factory worker will make.  They were offered a raise of 20%, which they rightly called “inhuman and humiliating.”  They correctly replied with,“We are not the object of mercy, the economy moves with our toil,” pointing out that all value is produced by the working class and then stolen by the parasitical ruling class.  Thousands of workers in Bangladesh have been murdered in fires and building implosions this past year in the pursuit of profit.  Though all of these working class deaths were mostly women, there were men and children who died as well.  The families of those affected are also in desperate situations since capitalism doesn’t have to take care of the working class, only its own profit. 

 

As the working class fights back, PLP will continue to grow.  Our friends in Greece and Bangladesh will continue to spread our message of Communist Revolution.  Anybody who wants to help build a new world that meets our needs should also help to build the PLP.

      

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PL Youths’ Red Ideas Greeted At International Festival

ATHENS, GREECE, July 30 — Seven PLP youth representing our international party participated in the  Resistance 2008 Festival, a worldwide gathering of thousands of young students and workers, hosted by the fake leftist Communist Organization of Greece (KOE). Our young comrades gained much experience in fighting for PL’s revolutionary communist politics internationally — helping develop new political leadership for PLP. We also fulfilled our aim of making many contacts among workers locally and from elsewhere, all seriously interested in our Party. These comrades come from different areas and work backgrounds. Some have been in PLP for a long time while others joined the Party within the last few years.

We distributed hundreds of CHALLENGES and several thousand special supplements, as well as hundreds of PLP’s document “Road to Revolution 4” and recent issues of the Communist Magazine. While there were many fake leftist groups present, most of the participants were young Greek students and workers. While unable to speak Greek, we managed to advance our ideas among many of them.

We hit the ground running to spread our ideas. Our tables displaying all our literature and banners was one of the most popular. We worked nonstop talking to new people and always had a group of people hanging out and chatting!

We fought for international working-class unity against nationalism, explaining that nationalism builds false loyalties to capitalists instead of being loyal to the working class across all borders. It is another tool, like racism, to divide the world’s workers. We were also the only group to advocate the dictatorship of the proletariat. This put us at odds with the festival, which supported the Maoists in Nepal and their leader “Prachanda” who is fighting for unity with local capitalists. Almost everyone we spoke with was interested in our ideas, even if they disagreed.

At our scheduled panel discussion on the final day, the seats were full; chairs were added three times for the overflow audience. After a KOE member spent 20 minutes criticizing our ideas on nationalism, a comrade drew applause with a powerful response  that used the history of what nationalism produced in Africa and elsewhere, saying Nepal is currently following that path. We also explained why we fight directly for communism since socialism retained too many remnants of capitalism (like the wage system) and led to the return of open capitalism in the former Soviet bloc and China.

We adapted to the fact that most people didn’t speak English and that parts of the festival were dedicated to non-political events like rock concerts. So each night we distributed our literature to the concert-goers. At one point, the hundreds gathered were all reading CHALLENGE, not even paying attention to the band!
We were also fortunate in meeting a young Greek airport worker moments after landing. She took a day off to accompany us to the festival, translated our literature and banners into Greek and helped explain our ideas to those Greeks who didn’t speak English. She is very supportive of the Party and is being struggled with to join us and help build PLP in Greece.

Racism was much more prevalent in Greece and Western Europe than we expected. Our nonwhite comrades were constantly ID’d while whites weren’t. One comrade was ID’d three times by three different cops within about three minutes, while they searched for “illegal” immigrants. On the trains the police challenged the comrade’s passport for “authenticity.”

In one southern Italian city, swastikas and Nazi propaganda were plastered all over the walls. In Paris, we encountered and supported a strike of immigrant workers who were demonstrating right across from the Champs-Elysees, the main tourist drag. We tried speaking for a while in our broken French and bought them all lunch.

Our trip has built confidence in ourselves and in each other, trusting the collective and carrying out decisions in a disciplined way (both personally and politically) as well for each comrade to make decisions consistent with our goals when they were on their own and under various pressures. We internationalized our perspective of the working class. Almost all of us made separate groups of friends with whom we plan to stay in touch and collectively recruit to the Party

While the U.S. ruling class is making long-term investments in Obama and building new weapons of war, we made a long-term investment in our movement, by solidifying young comrades and laying the groundwork for the growth of PLP.

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