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Greek elections

Statement of the Workers’ Struggle on strategic questions of the anti-capitalist movement in Greece and attitude towards SYRIZA

Saturday 16 June 2012, by Workers’ Struggle

After familiarizing itself with the statement of the Executive Bureau of the Fourth International on the situation in Greece, the analysis of the Greek section of the Fourth International, the exchange of messages between the Bureau and OKDE-Spartakos and upon discussion and vote on the matter within the organization, Workers’ Struggle takes the following stance on the question of attitude towards SYRIZA and the Executive Bureau’s statement:

1. We believe it was wrong of the Executive Bureau to make a statement without prior serious discussion with the Greek section, OKDE-Spartakos. It is the Executive Bureau’s right to take a stance different from that of the individual section, but that should come only after consultation and discussion with the section’s representatives.

2. We find that the Executive Bureau’s resolution has a few significant shortcomings. First of all, it states uncritical support for SYRIZA and its leadership. Uncritical call for gathering around the five point program is also expressed. That program, as well as all the demands made by SYRIZA, is fundamentally reformist, quite distant from the transitional program and as such entirely insufficient. First of all, an intervention to set more radical demands and further develop the five point program in a more radical fashion would be needed. However, there are no guarantees that SYRIZA’s leadership will even be able to carry out the proposed program, moreover according to statements from some of its leaders; exactly the opposite is to be expected. In any case, political struggle against SYRIZA’s leadership and radicalization of political situation arise as tasks in the immediate future.

3. Also, the resolution lacks a more consistent class analysis as the complex question is reduced to one-sided support of SYRIZA. Because of that the resolution completely lacks the strategic part, i.e. outlining the course of action that would take the present situation to a pre-revolutionary state. Primarily, we are referring to the strategy of activities that would, among other things, include: transitional strategy, left-wing criticism of SYRIZA, maintaining a critical distance from SYRIZA and its leadership, continuous work on radicalizing the student and workers’ movement in the non-parliamentary sphere. Therefore there is a huge void in the resolution between two parts: the uncritical support of SYRIZA at this moment and gathering around it today, and in an undetermined future the overthrow of capitalism and the Socialist United States of Europe. It is not at all clear; actually it is completely incomprehensible how the prior can directly lead to the latter.

4. Despite that – and based on the information we have – we believe that critical support of SYRIZA seems to be the most prudent strategy at the present moment.

5. Despite its bourgeois leadership and reformist dominant organization, there are also several revolutionary groups in SYRIZA, and SYRIZA by no means represents a homogenous organization.

6. SYRIZA’s rise to power could lead to intense radicalization. Its leadership would compromise itself as it would not able to meet the demands, thus opening the space for criticism from the revolutionary left and further radicalization; even partially implemented social measures would prove to be insufficient on one side, and on the other side they would face strong resistance from the bourgeoisie and the imperialists that could ultimately push the situation in direction of need for even more radical solutions and towards a revolutionary path.

7. Revolutionary fractions inside SYRIZA could use the situation to strengthen their influence and intensify the conflict with the current leadership. Splits in the leadership are possible as well. We can already ‘’hear a cacophony from its leaders’’.

8. Similarly, the Bolsheviks called upon the Mensheviks and Social-Revolutionaries, while they still had the majority, to ‘’take the power in their own hands’’ and ‘’fulfill their promises’’. That led to the strengthening of the Bolsheviks and the growth of their party, as well as weakening of the position of previously mentioned parties.

9. Of course, the revolution will not be achieved through elections, yet they should be seen as a platform for achieving strategic priorities at a certain moment. ANTARSYA’s present politics will probably mean a fall to less that 1% of the vote in the coming elections, whilst SYRIZA’s support will increase even more. That way nothing will be gained strategically from the elections, moreover ANTARSYA potentially alienates itself from one of the potential focal points of the future events. Independence of the revolutionary currents in relation to the reformists, in our opinion should primarily be achieved through work on building an independent revolutionary organization and revolutionary program, maintaining a critical distance from SYRIZA and through independent activities, without any illusions in the leadership of the SYRIZA and the potential of parliamentary activities, but with simultaneous work on approaching the widest layers of masses which at this moment stand with SYRIZA.

June 16th 2012