Monday, March 30, 2015

From Nikos Beloyiannis' defense in his two trials

KKE Berlin honors the memory of Nikos Belogiannis, 29 March 2015
(First trial, November 1951)

The responsibility for the fact that the land of Greece is full of graves and ruins lies exclusively with the foreign imperialists and their Greek servants. [...] We love Greece and its people more than our accusers. We have shown it when its liberty, independence and integrity was at risk, and we have fought so our country can live through better days, without hunger and war. This is the purpose of our struggle, for which, when it is necessary, we lay down our lives. I believe that by trying us today you are trying the struggle for peace. You are trying Greece. [...] The organizers of this trial, Greeks and foreigners, have undertaken unprecedented efforts to slander the struggle of the KKE, without hesitating to distort well-known texts. [...] Yet it was proven despite all this that the KKE is a patriotic party, with national deeds no other party can present. Because it has offered tremendous hetacombs to the altar of Greek independence and freedom. [...] For this reason, the bullets of the execution squad will not murder us. They will murder the peace and honor of Greece.

(Second trial, February 1952)

This is the freedom of communists: this is the freedom to struggle in order to overthrow class slavery under any conditions. From this grows the strength and stamina of communists. This strength illustrates the values of our struggle, of disinterest in our daily and relentless contribution, whose only payback is the justification given by fulfilling one's duty: the fight against the system until its overthrow, so that a communist society can be built.

Announcement of the KKE on the unacceptable statements made in the USA by P. Kammenos

The Press Office of the Central Committee of the KKE has issued an announcement on the unacceptable and dangerous statements of the Minister of Defense, where it notes the following:

"The Minister of Defense of the SYRIZA-ANEL government, Panos Kammenos, has made a series of unacceptable and dangerous statements during his visit to the USA.

He attempted to present the proposition of sharing of the energy wealth of the Aegean sea and of the country more broadly with the United States as a panacea for the capitalist crisis. However, life has shown that energy issues, in capitalist conditions and in conditions of the intensification of intra-imperialist antagonisms, not only fail to secure prosperity but are in fact a "magnet" for conflicts and bloody contests, the "source" of the dismemberment of states and of other evils.

The government bears grave responsibility. The invitation to the USA to act as a transatlantic arbiter of the energy wealth of the country, and its presentation as a force guaranteeing stability, are a provocation to our people.

Experience has shown that "solutions" of this nature not only undermine sovereign rights but lead our people to new adventures, as has been shown by a series of developments in other countries, who are close allies of the USA in the region, like Georgia and Ukraine. The shared exploitation of resources, to which the Minister of Defense has invited the USA, relates to the "dinner fest" pursued by American energy monopolies along with local businessmen, on the backs of the working class and of other popular strata.

Equally dangerous are the Minister's statements regarding an extension of the united defense doctrine of Greece and Cyprus "with the participation of Israel, in combination with tighter co-operation with the USA." For they involve our country even further within intra-imperialist competition, while peace in the Aegean and the Mediterranean cannot be safeguarded by those responsible for scores of crimes on earth, those who continue to butcher the people of Palestine.

The Minister of Defense has offered once more to have the country support the aggressive plans of NATO and the USA, which are under preparation in the Middle East and Northern Africa with the excuse of "the war against Terror."

The above, as well as the hymns to the USA to which Mr. Kammenos has resorted, and his statement "fear not, Greece is not changing its course", constitute the guarantees offered by the SYRIZA-ANEL government to the USA. These statements come on the heels of Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras' visit to Moscow. They show the desire of the new government to use risky maneuvers in the geopolitical conflict of capitalist "mega powers", intending to guarantee the greatest possible benefits for the country's bourgeoisie. However, it is well known that "when buffalo fight in the swamp, the frogs pay for the fight." For this reason, the KKE position for disengagement from the imperialist alliances of NATO and the EU, for the unilateral cancellation of debt, for the socialization of economic instruments, of the wealth produced by the workers, under popular power, is necessary and timely. Under this orientation, the mineral wealth of the country, which is in fact the people's property, can be used with the criterion of the people's interest instead of being offered up or sold to monopolies."

902, trans. Lenin Reloaded

Addendum: P. Kammenos' statements to V. Nuland (in Greek)

KKE "of the Interior"

In 1968, and in response to their interpretation of events in Czechoslovakia as a "Soviet invasion" during the party conference that took place in Budapest (KKE was banned in Greece and many of its members lived in exile), a number of the members of KKE expressed their disagreement with the party majority and left the party. They were joined by a number of party members living in Greece, and continuing party activity in a clandestine manner. 

Those who left KKE called their party "KKE of the Interior" (ΚΚΕ Εσωτερικού), suggesting that everyone who had stayed loyal to KKE was a member of a "KKE of the exterior", that is to say, a Soviet Union operative rather than a true Greek. To emphasize their point, their party emblem featured the Greek flag behind the hammer and sickle which was the emblem of the KKE.

Nicos Poulantzas, then living in Paris, France, became the most important intellectual voice of the "KKE of the Interior", whose orientation was, however paradoxically for a party that pointed at others as "suspiciously internationalist", Eurocommunist, and in line with Italian and Spanish Eurocommunism. Of course, the "internationalism" the KKE "of the Interior" rejected was socialist internationalism; the internationalism it upheld was the "internationalism" of the west European left.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

SYRIZA's "Red Notebook" on Ukraine, 22/2/2014

The "Red Notebook" is a political and economic analysis website maintained by the "Red-Green network" of SYRIZA. Several of its authors also write in the main party newspaper "Avgi", and its theoretical influences include Trotskyism and Althusserianism (particularly via Poulantzas, probably the most central figure in the political orientation of this group). Some of the top SYRIZA cadre members it features are economists Euclid Tsakalotos (Deputy Min. of Int. Fin. Relations) Yannis Dragasakis (gov. Deputy leader) and John Milios, and intellectuals including Costas Douzinas and Aristeidis Baltas (Min. Ed.). The article that follows was published on the 22nd of February, after the first phase of the Maidan coup. The translation is mine.
On the Ukraine Uprising
Simonida Argyrakou

The Left must understand the needs of poor strata and support their demands. On the other hand, it must also stand against imperialism -- both EU-USA and Russian imperialism.

Contemporary history involves several examples of social uprisings in which, whereas the causes of the problems are clearly of a class nature, their failure to express themselves in Left terms --whether because of the inability of people to complete their demands beyond the political change in personnel or because of the exploitation of popular rage by nationalists-- make some segments of the Left see the whole enterprise negatively.

"Avgi" on the NATO war on Yugoslavia: "Srebrenitsa", 9/7/2005

From KKE obstruction of NATO train missions to Yugoslavia
The following article was published in the newspaper "Avgi" (Αυγή) on the 9th of July 2005. At the time of the article's publication, SYN, the basic party "Avgi" expressed, had already become the main constituent party of SYRIZA, which was founded in 2004. Its author, Dionysis Gousetis, later abandoned SYN to become a candidate for the neoliberal party "Action-Liberal Alliance." Like many others, the article is no longer accessible in "Avgi's" newspaper archives, but it is hosted by a neoliberal site associated with Mr. Gouseti's later alliances, and both its original venue and the date of publication are clearly visible.

What is a genocide? It is the most hideous of crimes: you kill the other exclusively on the basis of what they are. Srebrenitsa, 11 July 1995; ten years ago to the day; the first genocide in Europe after the Jewish and Roma Holocaust  in Hitler's hands; Srebrenitsa; 8,000 Muslims dead because they were Muslim; Srebrenitsa; a wound that remains open as long as those responsible remain unprosecuted; Srebrenitsa; the wound of civilized Europe.

SYRIZA on Ukraine, Russia and EU sanctions: Interview with Minister Nikos Kotzias, 7 March 2015

The following are extracts from the interview of the Minister of Foreign Affairs Nikos Kotzias (elected through SYRIZA ballot) to the German TV networks ZDF and ARD, during his visit to Riga.
Journalist: Mr. Minister, what is your view of the EU stance toward Ukraine?

N. Kotzias: We have already stated that we want peace in Europe, peace and stability in Ukraine. We support the Ukrainian government in its struggle to obtain the country's independence and to safeguard its sovereign rights. [...]

Journalist: Are you satisfied with the EU stance toward Russia?

N. Kotzias: The EU stance toward Russia was shaped through the contribution of Greece as well, and I am satisfied with it.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

On the Saudi Arabian imperialist attack against Yemen

Yemen: Saudi Arabian Attack with U.S. support
902 (KKE Portal)
Trans.: Lenin Reloaded

In an effort to roll back the reputedly rising influence of Iran in the territory of North and Central Yemen, which was in the last six months under the control of Shi'ite Houthi civil guards, the Saudi Arabian airforce and the airforces of ten countries from the broader Middle East, having received the blessings and support of the U.S. President, Barack Obama, have begun murderous imperialist attacks on Wednesday night. Their excuse is "saving" the pro-American Yemen President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi.

The first bombs fell in an inhabited area of the capital, Sana'a, causing tens of casualties amidst non-combatants (among them, children); this, at least, is the information conveyed by the TV network Al Masirah of Yemen, controlled by Shi'ites, and by the Iranian satellite network Press TV. The Al Masirah network also encouraged medical personnel to urgently visit the capital's hospitals in order to aid the injured.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

PAME denounces the new alliance of SYRIZA with the fascist Golden Dawn

PAME denounces the new governmental trade unionism of SYRIZA, who does not hesitate at nothing in order to gain a few votes, not even in an alliance with the Nazi, criminal Golden Dawn.

While in the workplaces the layoffs and wage-cuts continue with the new government and while the class trade union movement struggles to organize workers against the new anti-people agreement signed by the Government of SYRIZA with the European Union, at the same time the forces of SYRIZA in the trade unions, are trying to show that they are gaining support by the workers and for this reason they even ally with the fascists of Golden Dawn.

In the “minefield” of the imperialist competition

While Victoria Nuland, the USA’s Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs was meeting in Athens with the Greek Prime Minister, A. Tsipras, the Deputy Defense Minister, K. Isychos was traveling to Moscow.

It is becoming obvious that the new Greek government has made a choice to approach as many imperialist centres as possible, playing the card of the country’s strategic value, in order to upgrade the position of the Greek monopolies, of course, with its stable euro-atlantic orientation unchanged and particularly the “strategic cooperation” of Greece with the USA.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Giorgos Stamatis-The economic crisis and the delusions concerning its overcoming (Pt. 2)

Pt. 1.

The measures recommended by capitalists and by governments in order to overcome the crisis, i.e., low wages, the funding and privileging of production and of investments, tax deductions for profit and cuts in the social spending of the Public sector, increase profit or even the rate of profit beyond any measure of doubt, but they do not contribute to the reduction of unemployment, whether by increasing the rate of capital employment or by increasing investment. For they do not increase either of these two. This is because the underemployment of capital means that demand is low when compared to the production potential of the given capital. So, as long as demand remains low, capitalists will not increase their investment. The measures I cited above do not increase either the rate of the employment of capital or the investments, or the employment of the labor force; they only increase profit

But it is said that increased profit means increase of investments and thus increase of the employment of the labor force. This is incorrect. For capitalists invest only when the expected future demand and expected future profit is high, not when the profits of one or more years are high as a result of state funding, tax deductions and low wages rather than of increased demand.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Nikos Sofianos (KKE) on the Mayor of Athens' statement of support to Antonio Ledezma

Member of the Municipal Council of Athens --elected through the "Popular Alliance"-- and member of the Politbureau of the Central Committee of the KKE Nikos Sofianos criticized the political and selective motivation of the Mayor of Athens, who expressed his support to the Mayor of Caracas [Antonio Ledezma]. He is under arrest on charges of being involved in a coup against the government of the country.

Sofianos noted: "We consider mistaken the Mayor's, Mr. Kaminis's, choice to adopt the arguments of reactionary forces supported by the USA and by corporate interests in Venezuela. The Mayor of Caracas, whom the Mayor of Athens supported through a statement, is openly undermining the people of Venezuela. He is a protagonist of the Venezuela coup in 2002, and has been charged seven times for a number of offenses, including 2 charges on homicide. The Athens Mayor's position on the Mayor of Caracas arrest on D.A charges suggests that there is political and selective motivation". Sofianos also recalled to memory Kaminis's silence when the Israelis were leveling Gaza.

902, Trans. Lenin Reloaded.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Giorgos Stamatis-The economic crisis and the delusions concerning its overcoming (Pt. 1)

Giorgos Stamatis
The economic crisis and the delusions concerning its overcoming
Theseis 15, April-June 1986
Translation: In Defense of Greek Workers

The economic crisis that is hitting capitalist countries today broke out in the beginning of the 1970s. It is therefore well into its second decade.

I will not here deal with its causes, but with certain of its aspects that I think are of particular interest.

The crisis itself was initially expressed in the form of a decrease of the rate of the employment of labor, that is to say, in the form of an increase of unemployment; and in the form of the decrease of the rate of the employment of capital. The decrease in the rate of employment of labor and of capital had stagnation as their immediate consequence, and sometimes also resulted in the decrease of the GNP.

According to the view and practice that was dominant until the end of the 1960s, governments in such cases must respond through an anti-cyclical policy, i.e. they must implement measures to increase demand for local products; the most important of these measures is the increase of public spending itself. This policy is known as the Keynesian policy of fighting the economic crisis. But in this case, in the case of the crisis that began in the 1970s, it was as if what was taken for granted was exactly the opposite: the former supporters of Keynesian economic policy suddenly advocated a pro-cyclical policy of cutting public spending, especially of social spending, and of reducing demand, while governments did their best to apply an "austerity" policy, as it became known [1].

"Let's save capitalism now, we can have socialism later": Don't consume after expiry date

Lapavitsas, state-of-the-art "socialism" in 2015:

Let me come clean on this. Keynes and Keynesianism, unfortunately, remain the most powerful tools we’ve got, even as Marxists, for dealing with issues of policy in the here and now. The Marxist tradition is very powerful in dealing with the medium-term and longer-term questions and understanding the class dimensions and social dimensions of economics and society in general, of course. There’s no comparison in these realms.

But, for dealing with policy in the here and now, unfortunately, Keynes and Keynesianism remain a very important set of ideas, concepts, and tools even for Marxists. That’s the reality. Whether some people like to use the ideas and not acknowledge them as Keynesian is something I don’t want to comment upon, but it happens.

So I cannot blame Varoufakis for that, for associating himself with Keynesians, because I’ve also associated myself with Keynesians, openly and explicitly so. If you showed me another way of doing things, I’d be delighted. But I can assure you, after many decades of working on Marxist economic theory, that there isn’t at the moment. So yes, Varoufakis has worked with Keynesians. But that isn’t really, in and of itself, a damning thing.

Aleka Papariga-The CP position of refusing to participate in bourgeois government (last part)

Pt. 1
Pt. 2

The tactic of the opportunists is to reintroduce the superseded and mistaken strategy of stages, indeed positing as a first stage the exit from the crisis in the path of capitalist development and the incorporation into the EU and NATO. The program that is promoted by them defends a capitalism that will not be too unjust, a capitalism without decay and parasitism, a "more humane" capitalism that will resolve international conflicts, that is to say intra-imperialist competition, through political negotiation and peaceful means!

The detachment of politics from the economy is a provocative aspect of the positions of opportunists. They argue that the bourgeois state can become a social state for all the people. What is also provocative is their interpretation of imperialism. To them, imperialism in Europe is simply Germany, in Latin America the USA. They reject the economic essence of imperialism, which is the export of capital, the concentration of capital in the form of capitalist stock property, and monopolies. And of course they don't see imperialism as monopoly capitalism, as the highest stage of capitalism. They mechanically transfer to contemporary circumstances the period of colonialism, arguing that Greece and all the countries in a middle and lower position in the imperialist system have turned into colonies [all these were "Left Platform" positions, primarily]. They accuse the bourgeoisie for not being patriotic enough, arguing that it is its cowardice that makes it surrender jurisdiction to decision centers like the EU Commission. They divide the bourgeoisie into a productive and a parasitic section,  into healthy and immoral capitalists. Their criticism of capitalism is primarily moralistic, they don't make the slightest reference to capitalist relations of production.

I sent the Party

I sent the Party
another ten marks.
Don't write my name
just my initials.

It's not that I'm afraid
(what kind of worker would I be?)
But for this little
do not waste the ink.

When you get all the wealth
then write my name
and the plan, and the sector
and write it in capitals.

Music: Mikis Theodorakis
Lyrics: Fondas Ladis
Vocals: Yannis Syris
From the album Letters from Germany (1975)

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

The Factory

The factory, the factory it never stops
night and day it works
and what is the name of the man next to me
or of that crazy Italian?
I can't ask them
nor can I breathe.

Aleka Papariga-The CP position of refusing to participate in bourgeois government (Pt. 2)

Pt. 1.

In conditions of rapid deterioration of the people's standard of living and while the workers' movement -- despite its important struggles, ones with a broader resonance in Europe -- still lags very much behind in terms of organization and impact, the bourgeoisie manages, despite its own dead-ends, its own difficulties in managing the crisis and in achieving a speedy economic recovery, to maintain the stability of its power. Indignation and rage may grow, yet class consciousness may well lag behind in such conditions. In these conditions, there are grounds for both radicalization and roll-back, decrease of demands. This second trend is currently powerful, whereas radicalization does occur, but in a slow pace and with setbacks.

In these conditions, the formation of a coalition government, based on the prestige of the KKE, appeared to be something positive or at least as a lesser evil.

Insult to injury: Jacobin Magazine's brand of political ethics

Costas Lapavitsas's (SYRIZA) interview "Greece: Phase Two", published by Jacobin has this to say on KKE:
So you dismiss the argument that said a minority government was possible? 
That’s just nonsense. In the circumstances, nothing else was feasible. The real blame lies with the Communist Party (KKE), of course. Which, once again, has not measured up to the demands of history, and has chosen a line of complete opposition and complete hostility to Syriza and what it stands for, and therefore it forced Syriza to make this government with ANEL.
In a staggeringly cynical and shameless move, Jacobin accompanies the article and the quote in question with an image (above) from the 28 March 2014 anti-NATO KKE rally held in Thessaloniki. The rally was convened at 7 p.m on the occasion of the 15 years from the imperialist war on Yugoslavia, an event during which SYRIZA had kept the usual "forked tongue" approach it always has in NATO interventions (the blog will provide evidence of this in the next few posts).

The image was taken from photographer Giannis Papanikos' website; the characteristic yellow lettering of KKE is visible on a couple of the flags, despite possible image manipulation.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Mobilization at the Ministry of Labor on Tuesday against the looting of public fund deposits

On Tuesday 17 March, at 11 am, the Confederations of workers in Medicine, Construction Work, Press and Paper and Social Security Pensioners will demonstrate their protest at the Ministry of Labor. They are asking for a meeting with the Deputy Minister of Health and Social Security Dimitris Stratoulis [SYRIZA, Left Platform].

The Confederations are protesting the amendment submitted within the legislation "on humanitarian crisis", which posits that "funds deposited by Legal Entities of Public Law and Pension Funds in the Bank of Greece may be invested in toto to market contracts or the sale of Greek Government Bonds (repos)".

Friday, March 13, 2015

World Peace Council: Message of solidarity by the World Peace Council to the people of Venezuela

Message of solidarity by the World Peace Council to the people of Venezuela [En, Es]

In the latest escalation of events aggravated by the US imperialist interferences, we again vehemently express, in the name of the World Peace Council, our repudiation of the aggressions against the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, and of the coup attempts by imperialism, allied to the Venezuelan oligarchy and the extreme-right.

US President Barack Obama’s announcement of sanctions against seven Venezuelan officials, alleging that the South-American country represents an “unusual threat” to the US national security, is another demonstration of the imperialist effrontery and aggressiveness. Its coup enterprises are intensifying all over the world, but Venezuela is at the epicenter of these efforts of regime change against a Government that does not surrender to the imperialist dictates.

Statement of the International Relations Section of the CC of the KKE on the murder of comrade Hani Jbara

The KKE condemns in the most categorical manner the cowardly murder of comrade Hani Jbara, member of the CC of the Syrian CP, by an armed criminal organization.

The KKE expresses its condolences with the Syrian Communist party as well as with the family and friends of comrade Hani.



KKE "sectarianism" (Pt. 1)

My google search on the words "KKE" and "sectarianism" yielded a stunning 823,000 results. It's as if there exists some kind of Word feature that inserts the second word after every use of the first: the KKE is "sectarian" with the same phrasal predictability that the sky is "blue", the summer is "hot", or that kittens are "cute".

But then, what does "sectarian" really mean?

In an article entitled "Understanding the Greek Communists" (as in "Understanding the sexual rites of Kiribati", or "Understanding bipolar disorder"), published in the inevitable Jacobin, Nicos Lountos glosses it this way:
The reality is that the KKE has been paying for its sectarianism more than its radicalism. The KKE not only opposes common action with other political forces on the Left, but it’s stood apart from the broader mass movement in recent years.
KKE "sectarianism", then, appears to involve two nominal features: a. the refusal of collaboration with other political parties allegedly on the Left and b. the refusal to participate in the "broader mass movement."

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Greek Paradoxes: Anti-German chauvinism and the gestation of fascism in the "Anti-Memorandum block", 2010-2012

Spring of 2010: the first Memorandum is introduced in Greece by then PM George Papandreou (Jr). The Greek political imagination goes wild with a persistent and impeccably orchestrated fantasy: this is not about capitalism, it's not about imperialism and the Greek bourgeoisie's bonds with EU finance capital. This is an enemy attack, the "new German Occupation". Germans are all Nazis, the Greek government is a Nazi collaborator that wishes to "Germanify" us, and the issue is the formation of a "new EAM", a purely "patriotic" one, which the traitorous KKE refused to undertake, arguing that this ain't 1941, that Greek capitalism was not "dragged" anywhere against its will, and that it's not interested in "unifying all the real Greeks against the Germans and their local collaborators" but in national class struggle.

So the heroic mantle falls on the muscular shoulders of the "anti-Memorandum alliance": a melange of wild-eyed SYRIZA Social Democrats believing themselves Maoists, extreme right wing crackpots, social media enthusiasts and sundry petty bourgeois remnants of decaying PASOK and ND clientelism, who coagulated into a political movement in 2011, in the framework of the "Greek Indignados".

Some months later, Golden Dawn had gone up from 0.29% in 2009 to 6.92% in June 2012 (a 2386% increase), real rather than photoshopped swastikas and Storm Troops filled the streets of Athens, and the pogroms against immigrants and communists were unleashed through the hot summer. Another part of the recent Greek story no one wishes to remember, but one which reveals volumes about the organicism of the SYRIZA-ANEL coalition and explains the current, ludicrous remnants of showcase "anti-Germanism": bread and circuses for brain-washed masses who were duped into supporting the "real patriots" against the "fake" ones. The "healthy --and healthily patriotic-- business interests" must after all still be saved...
Transitional PM Papadimos as a Nazi, from a "left" anti-Memorandum blog, 2012

Aleka Papariga-The CP position of refusing to participate in bourgeois government (Pt. 1)

Aleka Papariga
The CP position of refusing to participate in bourgeois government
Communist Review 2012, issue 2
Translation to English: Lenin Reloaded

First, please allow me to elaborate on the rich experience the KKE has garnered from its participation in bourgeois governments, an experience that is even richer when it comes to Europe more broadly. This doesn't concern very special cases, but facts and results that offer generalizable conclusions and that confirm one thing: that in the period of the transition from capitalism to socialism a CP has no reason to take responsibility in a bourgeois government or, more generally, in a government of bourgeois management. For as long as the working class and its allies have not taken power into their hands, the CP must be an oppositional power and use that position to enact its vanguard role in the movement, exploiting of course all available forms of struggle -- including the bourgeois parliament.

Participation in a bourgeois government is a mistake that cannot easily be redressed and that may prove impossible to redress.

Honesty galore

I 'm copying from Jacobin mag's interview with SYRIZA MP (but not SYRIZA member) Costas Lapavitsas, which is is being touted on the social media as an "honest interview":

So you dismiss the argument that said a minority government was possible?

That’s just nonsense. In the circumstances, nothing else was feasible. The real blame lies with the Communist Party, of course. Which, once again, has not measured up to the demands of history, and has chosen a line of complete opposition and complete hostility to Syriza and what it stands for, and therefore it forced Syriza to make this government with ANEL.
Let's restrict ourselves to a single aspect of this astounding response, in which "political responsibility" consists in laying the blame for one's own decisions elsewhere: Lapavitsas says that under "the circumstances" (meaning, ostensibly, of the electoral result), SYRIZA was "forced" into partnership with ANEL.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015


Toward the end
Mihalis Katsaros had no teeth.

It seems he left them as collateral
to poetry.

This explains why his words bite
bone and marrow at once

like a swarm of magnificent

Perhaps his testament was really
these teeth

and his pages dirt, nourishing
a crop of giants

hairy, one-eyed
with arms like sickles

with a voice made of caves and stampede
with letters on the forehead

in splendid flame engraved
with bird beaks for nails

with wells for mouths, wherein there wait in ambush
armies of the unquiet dead.

Poem by Lenin Reloaded, written 21 November 2009, self translated.

Mihalis Katsaros-Dorians (1953)


I could, of course, stand first
amidst the armed Dorians,
dressed in their much admired garb
like him who posed in a museum
frozen in place -- reminiscent of glorious waterfalls--
I could, of course,
and not by chance.

An interesting dialogue between SYRIZA, KKE and Golden Dawn MPs, Greek Parliament, 10/3/2015

Maria Kanellopoulou (SYRIZA): …. But the thousands of Wehrmacht troops, the SS, the Gestapo, the Luftwaffe and tanks that drowned Greece in blood didn't come from the moon, nor from Sirius, nor from Thule, as their local epigones claim -- parenthetically, they don't pretend to be patriots, they celebrate Hitler's birthday and tattoo themselves with swastikas. [...] The Greece on which we are deciding has been borrowed from the youth, like Pavlos Fyssas, who was murdered by the epigones of the Nazis, those who dismantled the country 40 [70] years ago. To them we owe the truth. To them we owe the [war] reparation.

Michael Arvanitis-Avramis (Golden Dawn): Ms Chair of Parliament, how can you allow her to talk like that? Recall her to order! She has no right!

Maria Kanellopoulou: And it's of blood. To them we owe.

Kostas Skolarikos: On December 1944, Radio Interview, 3/12/2014 (Part 1)

Journalist: We referred then, in our introduction, to December 1944, and we will explore this issue a bit further, since the Communist Party of Greece has launched a process of re-approaching and re-reading history, if you wish. So, we will have a look at the basic aspects it indicates in this re-reading. Let me welcome Mr. Kostas Skolarikos, who works at the History Department of the Central Committee of the KKE. Good morning, Mr. Skolarikos.

Skolarikos: Good morning. Let me initially point out that this isn't a re-reading, because the KKE has never ceased trying to examine its history -- and its history is a part of the history of modern Greece as a whole. This rather concerns the lessons we can draw today, under the light of new sources and archives that have been published. This is then the process in which the new book published by our party is embedded. I'm referring to the volume December 1944: Crucial moment of the class struggle, where one can find data on December, as well as some testimonies on the campaign of dynamiting the hotel Grande Bretagne [British Army HQ in Athens], and diverse other elements of the period.

Nikos Kyritsis-The Democratic Army of Greece (Book Review)

The Democratic Army of Greece: Foundation, Units, Officers, Forces, Losses, Social Composition
By Nikos Kyritsis
Book Review, Rizospastis, 9 February 2014
Transl.: Lenin Reloaded

"They should have marched at once on Versailles [...] The right moment was missed because of conscientious scruples. They did not want to start the civil war, as if that mischievous abortion Thiers had not already started the civil war [...] However that may be, the present rising in Paris [...] is the most glorious deed of our Party."

Comrade Nikos Kyritsis chose these words of Karl Marx (Letter to Kugelman, April 1871) as an epigram for the first chapter of his book, capturing, through this parallel, the essence of the struggle of the Democratic Army of Greece (DSE) as the apogee of the class struggle in Greece. With this book, comrade Nikos Kyritsis defends in writing what he had defended with the rifle as a fighter and an officer of DSE, as a member and a cadre member of the KKE.

SYRIZA MP Kanellopoulou states she will sue Golden Dawn MP Arvanitis

SYRIZA MP M. Kanellopoulou announced today that she intends to sue Golden Dawn MP Avramis Arvanitis, as, during the Parliament discussion of German reparations for damage done in World War II, and upon her reference to the murder of Pavlos Fyssas by Golden Dawn, Arvanitis allegedly made a gesture meaning he will cut her throat, and additionally slandered her father, ELAS officer Kostas Kanellopoulos, as a murderer in the Kalavryta region.

Needless to say, I stand fully in support of Kanellopoulou's intention to sue and hope she will have her party's support in doing so; zero tolerance to open Nazi provocation in parliament is essential. I hope Kanellopoulou's experience and her politically healthy response to it will cause other SYRIZA MPs to reconsider their egregious stance toward Golden Dawn in the past two years.

Torn pages

Yannis Kordatos, History of the Greek Working Class Movement, Boukoumanis Publishers, 1977, page 84, footnote 2:
When the newspaper Epi ta Prosso came out [1896], its publishers were hard up for cash. So they wrote to Pyrgos [Peloponnese] and asked for some money. In Patras, two sisters who worked in a sewing factory, and got paid 1,20 drachmas a day, stated that they would give, to support the newspaper, 3,50 each every weekend. In Pyrgos, again, Panos Giannopoulos, aka Machairas, together with Batounas, went to an upper-class coffeehouse and begged alms for a poor family. That way, they collected 35 drachmas (which was a great sum for that time), and sent it to the newspaper editors. The worker sisters died a year later, both of them from tuberculosis, yet, to the end of their lives, they showed exemplary commitment to their ideas, and tried to awaken other workers through their propaganda.
Without a name, without a personal history, without an explicable political genealogy, two TB-stricken women workers in Patras spend the last year of their lives funding one of the first socialist newspapers in the country, more than a hundred years ago.

Out books are full of torn pages, missing extracts, stories never told, or rather, stories that appear as insoluble enigmas addressed to us by a historical Sphinx. Radical historiography is not merely the struggle of memory against oblivion; it is a struggle against the fact that oblivion is constitutive, because it is part of the original circumstances attending subalternity, that is, class history as such. To these vanished voices, content cannot fully be restored. One finds oneself forced to restore to them their share of obscurity, their right to live on in the threshold of the retroactively intelligible, half submerged, half visible, as insistent demands to excavate something with no name, something buried nowhere specifically.

It is of these unknown ancestors one speaks when one speaks of history, it is with them one signs a secret agreement, it is from them that one receives a coded promise concerning the future.

What is the future? It is where the sewing women will have a name. Where they will sew and sew the torn pages back into the book, with a bright red thread. 

Written 30 December 2009, translated by the author on the occasion of International Working Women's Day.

On International Women’s Day

Dozens of events were held last week by the Federation of Greek Women (OGE) and the KKE in many Greek cities for the 8th of March, International Women’s Day.

The statement of the CC of the KKE notes the following amongst other things on this issue:

“On the occasion of the historic anniversary of March 8th, International Women’s Day, the CC of the KKE sends a message of greetings to all women: working women, salaried women, unemployed, pensioners, self-employed, women in the rural areas, young women in the schools, vocational education centres, Universities and Technological Institutes, research institutes, immigrant women, women from single parent families and from families with many children, mothers of children with disabilities, young mothers,. It sends militant greetings to the women all over the world who are suffering due to the imperialist interventions.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

SYRIZA and Golden Dawn: A Parliamentary Chronicle of what the "Global Left" doesn't want you to know

On March 4, 2015, prominent US intellectual Noam Chomsky was reported to have stated in an interview with Democracy Now that the reaction of European elites to SYRIZA, i.e, the pre-emption of its salutary social-democratic function as a means of saving capitalism from itself, "could lead to a right-wing response [...] The alternative to SYRIZA might be Golden Dawn, a neo-Nazi party."

It wasn't in any way an original formulation of the "Greek dilemma" in terms of a choice between the "carrot" and the "stick", between EU fiscal support for the Social Democratic desire to use a possible slackening of finance capital's stranglehold on the masses in order to curtail working-class militancy and the harsher, far less "attractive" alternative of holding the working class in its place through formal class dictatorship -- fascism. SYRIZA MP, Finance Minister and Anglo media darling Yanis Varoufakis had already put things in the same way in his Press conference with German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schauble a month before, on February 5:

Friday, March 6, 2015

Of Poor Old Bertolt Brecht

Of Poor Old B.B.

I, Bertolt Brecht, come from the black forests.
My mother carried me into the cities
As I lay in her body. And the cold of the forests
Will be in me till I die.
In the asphalt city I am at home. Right from the first
Supplied with every last rite:
With newspapers. And tobacco. And brandy.

KKE: The US-NATO stance on Ukraine is provocative; Greek government shares responsibility

KKE: The US-NATO stance is provocative; The Greek government stance on the Ukraine crisis aims to blind the people to the facts

The Department of International Relations of the Central Committee of the KKE has issued an announcement on the Ukraine crisis, which states:

«The US-NATO stance is provocative; the Greek government stance on the Ukraine crisis aims to blind the people to the facts

In the last few days, and despite the Minsk Treaty, the US and NATO have continued their intervention in the Ukrainian crisis, threatening the peoples of the region with a further ignition of conflict and bloodshed. More specifically:

- Three hundred US military personnel have arrived at the Lviv base in the Ukraine and have started the training of local troops. Hence, the US is making its military presence in the Ukraine, for which it has already approved 19 million dollars, more intense.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Fun Learning: What does SYRIZA understand by the word "socialism"?

After the NATO installment, we move to a different question that arose in Greece and abroad: namely, what is SYRIZA's view of socialism? Does SYRIZA proclaim itself a socialist party, and if so, in what sense? What, ultimately, does it mean by "socialism"? Let's review some of the answers party cadres gave since 2009:

1. Socialism is a superior socioeconomic system in comparison to capitalism. It is based on the concentration of means of production and distribution, which smashes the obstacles set to the development of productive forces by capitalist ownership and by production with the profit motive. This socialization will eliminate the capitalist anarchy of production and will render possible the planning of the economy for the benefit of the working social whole. SYRIZA Communist Tendency Contribution to the Party Program, May 2013
2. To us, socialism is a form of the organization of society which is based on social --not state-- ownership, and the admininistration of the means of production, while requiring democracy in all the cells and jointures of public life, so that workers can plan, direct, control and protect production through their elected organs, directing it to the satisfaction of social needs. At the same time, however, socialism is not for us a copy of models that have attempted to ground themselves in such ideas, but ended up misinterpreting them, distorting them, and finally, for many and complex reasons, self-destructing. Foundational Declaration of SYRIZA, July 2013

So, who has profited from EU "Loan Agreements"? And who has paid for them?

One of the most annoying aspects of the situation since the January elections is watching both SYRIZA supporters and SYRIZA detractors talk endlessly about "Greek obligations" toward the EU, whether they should be fulfilled, to what extent, and how. No one ever bothers to specify whose obligations these obligations really are and who has paid for them all these years. Old Karl Marx, of course, knew very well what bourgeois "debtology" is all about, for he has ominously remarked (Capital, Vol. 1, Chapter 31): "The only part of the so-called national wealth that actually enters into the collective possessions of modern peoples is their national debt."

Using Marx as means of understanding the contemporary situation with "national debt" was the main preoccupation of a book published, to great commercial success, by KKE member and journalist Nikos Bogiopoulos. Its title --It's Capitalism, Stupid (2011; pictured above)-- was nonetheless borrowed from a rather unlikely source, Bill ClintonBogiopoulos is extremely well known in Greece for his meticulous documentation of the glaring social injustice hidden behind the myth of "national debt", but as he has the great misfortune of being a KKE member, he is totally ignored by the global pundits of all things "Marxist" in Greece; they are too busy promoting more "convenient" versions of the product from the academic factories of the "global left".

This post is intended to throw some basic light on the reality of the situation, simply by translating data from some of the scores of economic research articles Bogiopoulos published in the last few years. I hope that it will settle once and for all the question: "WHO OWES WHO WHAT?"

Sunday, March 1, 2015

SYRIZA and NATO: April 2014 Exposec Conference -- and an Update

The American-Hellenic Chamber of Commerce and SGT are convening for the second consecutive year for the international defense & security conference, EXPOSEC-DEFENSEWORLD to take place April 7 & 8, 2014 at the Hotel Grande Bretagne.

The conference entitled "Defense & Security Policy: Meet the Future Challenges” is to be held under the auspices of the Ministry of National Defense, and remains the point of reference for stakeholders seeking to be informed on the latest developments in, and potential of, Greek defense & security policy issues. Exposec-Defenseworld is taking place at a critical geopolitical juncture, when Greece isexperiencing economic crisis and, at the same time, is called to regain its international credibility, strengthen its defense industry by leveraging existing infrastructure and creating strategic alliances, and ensure necessary governance and orderliness at internal and external security levels.

The remainders of a farce within a farce...

News report just in; prior to reading it, consult my brief introduction to SYRIZA "dissidence", if you haven't already done so. It will help you better understand the mechanism of submitting "protests" calculated in advance to never amount to anything else but good PR for the party's preferred deception narrative, that is that a "struggle within the party which wages a struggle within the terrain of eurocapitalism is being fearlessly waged; don't look anywhere else, stay with us". Or, in the KKE's far more laconic description, "revolutionary fireworks" as the Left Platform's line of party business.

The alternative motion of the Left Platform was rejected

The Central Commitee of SYRIZA rejected, with 92 votes against, 68 votes for and 5 blank votes [45 were...absent], the alternative motion of the Left Platform against the "Varoufakis list" and its content in the recent Eurogroup Agreement. 

On SYRIZA, NATO and the Middle East (Part I)

The people should be concerned with participation in interventions in the Middle East:
Government plans of "geopolitical upgrading"
The Coalition Government is exploiting the excuse of confronting Jihadists
Rizospastis, 1 March 2015
Translated by Lenin Reloaded

"Let us utilize the geopolitical dynamics of the country for the negotiating power of the government", said Alexis Tsipras at the SYRIZA Political Bureau meeting, foregrounding one of the goals of his government. This is a line he has been developing since early February, when, upon visiting Nicosia, Cyprus, he characterized Greece and Cyprus as "two important pillars of stability in the turbulent Southeast Mediterranean." He proposed, on the other hand, that Greece and Cyprus play the card of their geostrategic position in negotiations with their creditors: "The EU and the Eurozone are both amputated without Greece and Cyprus to their southeast ends, the borders that today, more than ever, must be stable and secure. Greece and Cyprus are pillars of stability and security in a geopolitically turbulent environment in the broader region. Those who do not understand this and are only making economic calculations will soon be proven wrong, because economists are fine, but if we rely only on them, we are in danger of leading Europe to a major disaster."