Greece

An open letter appeared in the Guardian newspaper on Sunday 28th June appealing for debt relief for Greece. The letter is addressed to David Cameron, the head of the Tory government. It is signed by, among others: Frances O’Grady (general secretary, TUC); Len McCluskey (general secretary, Unite the Union);recently knighted Sir Paul Kenny (general secretary, GMB); Manuel Cortes (general secretary, TSSA); Paul Mackney (Chair, Greece Solidarity Campaign); Jeremy Corbyn MP; John McDonnell MP; and Caroline Lucas MP.

The Greek crisis is approaching a denouement. This marks a turning point for the working class of Greece and the whole of Europe. Last January Greece voted for a government that promised to end the austerity policies that have ruined the country. The election of Syriza gave hope to many people throughout Europe. But precisely for this reason, the political leaders in Brussels and Berlin decided to crush the new government, to humiliate it, to sabotage it and finally to bring about its overthrow.

As the referendum approaches, political polarisation is reaching unprecedented levels in Greece. Events in the last 48h have revealed the sham of bourgeois democracy, as the Troika is not prepared to accept the Greek government’s willingness to make concessions and demands Tsipras’ removal. The conclusion is unavoidable: there is no way to end austerity within the limits of capitalism, and even less within the strait-jacket of the German dominated capitalist eurozone.

We already find ourselves fighting in a bitter class war that has been declared against the vast majority of the Greek people by the “black front” of the Troika and the Greek oligarchy. Wars are not won with passive “serenity”, but with militancy and a proper plan. The time has come for mass action and radical measures.

Late on Sunday, June 28, the Greek government decided to introduce bank and capital controls until July 7. This is in response to the provocative moves by the Troika institutions aimed at sabotaging the planned referendum in Greece. The war is being escalated, even though some are pushing for a deal to be reached for fear of the catastrophic consequences of a Greek default for the world economy.

A few hours ago, in a televised address to the nation, the Greek PM Tsipras has announced that he will put the latest ultimatum from the troika to a referendum on July 5. This marks a qualitatively new stage in the Greek crisis, one which can unleash the accumulated anger of the masses against the constant humiliation at the hands of the troika. 

The latest provocative demands and ultimatums placed by the troika on the Greek government have one clear aim: to destroy it. They cannot be interpreted in any other way and all the pieces of the puzzle are now falling together.

Thousands of workers, pensioners, self-employed, and youth took part in the demonstration at the centre of Athens that the Communist Party trade union front PAME organised and which was accompanied by a march to the Maximus Mansion (i.e., prime ministerial residence) thus expressing their opposition to the looming ‘Memorandum’.

At the last minute, when it seemed that a break was inevitable, the Greek government made a new proposal which included substantial additional concessions to the demands of Europe’s bankers and capitalists. It is not only that the Syriza government has been forced to abandon substantial points of its own election program, but even the famous “red lines” have been crossed.

The protracted negotiations between Greece and the troika which started after the election of Syriza on January 25 this year seem to have reached a dead end to which there seems to be no negotiated solution. This perception has accelerated the withdrawal of deposits from the banks which in turn brings the outcome closer. The troika is tightening the noose and unless the victim manages to break free it will choke.

The EU and IMF sharks have dropped their mask and revealed their real intentions, removing any illusions there may have been that an "honourable compromise" with the Greek government was somehow possible. The question is: what should be done now? What programme and policy should the government adopt in breaking with the creditors? Here we provide a statement of the .

More than 500 activists responded to the call of the Communist Tendency and signed the petition in favour of the cancellation of the Memoranda, the immediate withdrawal of the new Memorandum and the immediate implementation of election commitments. Amongst them are activists from the entire spectrum of the left wing of Syriza.

SYRIZA and the Independent Greeks (ANEL) have just completed three months in government in Greece. The economic, social, and political situation in Greece is characterised by the worsening of the profound crisis of Greek capitalism, and by the increasing intransigence of the foreign creditors. Its fate is being sealed by the shattering of the delusions of the new administration with regard to the possibility of breaking with austerity and memoranda within the framework of bourgeois politics.