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Major turning point in Greece for better or worse

29.01.2015
 

By Takis Fotopoulos  

Major turning point in Greece for better or worse. 54461.jpeg

There is no doubt that the Greek people's vote last Sunday was a big slap in the face of the Transnational Elite (TE-the elites based in the G7 countries), which was represented in Greece through all these years of the economic and social catastrophe imposed on the vast majority of the population by the infamous Troika (EU, IMF, ECB), as well as by its clients in the local elite. Yet, it was the same TE and its European component (the EU elite), which has destroyed the lives of the vast majority of the population in their effort to 'save' Greece from bankruptcy. However, the debt trap to which Greece entered since the 1980s, as I showed elsewhere,[1] was directly related to the very integration of Greece into the EU and the Eurozone. It was through this integration process that Greece lost a significant degree of self-reliance that had achieved in the post-war period, and a parasitic economic structure developed in which, apart from tourism and shipping, there were no other main sources of income to buy the growing imports that the open and liberalized markets of the EU Treaties imposed. The inevitable outcome was the huge BP deficits which were financed by foreign lending, as well as the parallel budget deficits to finance a growing welfare state, as the local elites were not prepared to share the tax burden for its financing -a practice which inevitably spread to society at large soon. When the elites decided to integrate Greece into the Eurozone, the country not only formally lost its economic sovereignty but also borrowing (backed now by a strong currency) continued and expanded until the entire bubble burst when foreign lending became more difficult due to the financial crisis of 2008-9. This is, in a nutshell. how Greece became a protectorate of the TE.[2]

The inevitable conclusion of such an analysis is that austerity is a symptom of the crisis, not its cause that refers to the distortion, if not dismantlement, of the production and consumption structures that the NWO of neoliberal globalization imposes as part of the process of integrating countries into it, for the benefit of the Transnational Corporations which control the entire process. So, although the result of the Greek elections, directly, was a slap against the austerity policies imposed by the TE though the Troika, indirectly, it was a slap against the TE and the EU themselves. Indirectly, because of the huge attempt to disorient the people by Syriza, which won the elections on the basis of a political platform according to which the causes of the crisis were just some bad policies imposed by bad politicians and economists, so that all that was needed was to elect some good politicians and economists to force the baddies to change policies. Yet, given that the parties which supported the continuation of the same policies (i.e. the 'pure' pro EU parties-New Democracy/Pasok, the governing coalition, and Potami, a new systemic party created by the elites a year ago to promote the same line) gained about 40 percent of the votes, in an election in which the formal abstention rate was 40percent-but the effective rate could be 25-30 percent. This means that,  most, a third of the population is determined to stay in the EU whatever the cost. Another third of the population would be prepared to stay in the EU but not unconditionally, in case the national interest is at risk (as the present governing coalition suggests (Syriza/Independent Greeks) and the last third does not believe that any real solution is possible within the EU. Roughly, this division coincides with a corresponding social division of the population between one third who are the beneficiaries of globalization, one third that just manages to cover its basic needs and the last third, which has been completely impoverished.

Therefore, Syriza simply attempted to attract this middle third of the population--the middle class that is being gradually being eliminated and the petty bourgeoisie in the private and public sectors. Most of the working class, the unemployed and the poor either abstained or, as statistics of how the vote was spread geographically show, voted mainly for the Communist Party (KKE) and the Golden Dawn Party (GD), which has clear sympathies towards the collaborators of the Nazis during the German Occupation and then to the Right in the ensuing Civil War and the military junta in the 1960s. Not accidentally, as Joaquin Flores, aptly points out,

"The GD, interestingly, calls both for nationalization of the gold industry, as well as other major industries, and the central bank. Those are among the real economic changes that would liberate Greece, and yet on the left, only the Communist Party (KKE) of Greece holds a similar position. That only the most radical parties have the most sensible and honest solutions to Greece's present problem, presents a special problem for Greece. In Toynbee's Study of History he develops the concept of civilizations going through stages of growth and later disintegration, as well as abortive and failed civilizations. It would seem that a hallmark of a disintegrating, abortive, or failed civilization is when the most sensible solutions are entirely marginalized and only held by those on the radical fringes".[3] 

In fact, the Communist party has long ago been marginalized, since it was banned for over a quarter of a century after its defeat in the Civil War and then was legalized following the fall of the military junta in 1974, on the condition that it will abandon any revolutionary tactics, while Golden Dawn is effectively banned, with most of its leadership in jail without trial and no access to the mass media--although formally it is still legal! 

Under these circumstances, Syriza's gamble clearly succeeded, although its program did not even question Greece's membership of the EU and the Eurozone but also did not include any radical measures to nationalize banks (including the Bank of Greece) and any key industries, as well as any real controls on the markets for commodities, capital and labor. However, the lack of such controls (not permissible under the EU Treaties) makes impossible any radical program to re-create a productive base, with the aim of self-reliance.

Yet, in one sense, even this first inadequate step that the Greek people took in ostracizing the political parties of the elites, was a victory. Not "a historic victory of the Left" in Greece, (or for some more enthusiastic commentators and analysts "of the liberal Left in Europe and beyond") but in the sense that it marked a turning point in the usual submission of the people to the dictates of the elites. A turning point which potentially, but only potentially, could lead to radical developments in the future, as long as the self-contradictory theories and policies suggested by the liberal Left are overcome. This, because the people sooner or later will realize why the policies suggested by the supposedly 'clever' politicians and the strange mix of neo-Keynesian/Marxist economists in fact aim to square the circle and will dismally fail in bringing about any real solutions to the critical situation created by Greece's integration into the NWO. Clearly, the fact that all those economists and politicians have not yet realized (or at least pretend so) that Keynesianism has been dead and buried since the rise of globalization, as it was based on sovereign nation-states that today are being phased out as economic sovereignty (and therefore national sovereignty) are things of the past. So, at most, what parties like Syriza in Greece and Podemos in Spain can achieve, as I showed in another article,[4] is to stick some plasters on the deadly wounds created by the crisis in the form of a few billion Euros to re-appoint some of those sacked in the public sector and to cover the essential needs for food, health, energy etc. of the very poor. But, all 'reforms' introduced by the Troika aiming to make labor more 'flexible', capital to move without any constraint and cheap commodities from abroad to crowd out domestic products, will of course remain intact. 

The main developments that followed the election of Syriza are compatible with the above analysis, particularly as regards to the composition of the new government that is full of the kind of politicians and economists I just described. Yet there also two developments which could have a double meaning, one compatible with the above analysis and another one that may imply at least the possibility of a radical change in the future.

The first is the governing coalition itself. Syriza had a choice, either to have a coalition with the party created by the elites (Potami) whose main condition was that the country's orientation with the EU and the Eurozone will never be challenged, or with the nationalist party of independent Greeks which is fiercely anti-austerity and does not have any qualms about setting conditions to the Troika that might lead to a break. Syriza has chosen the latter and unsurprisingly has been condemned for its choice by the Transnational Elite and the Zionists (see e.g. Daniel Cohn-Bendit's vicious attack in the Euro parliament; this is the 'red Danny' who is one of the main organs of the TE that supported enthusiastically all its criminal wars), as well as all the transnational mass media. Syriza's choice could simply mean that it did not want to lose all credibility by supporting a fully systemic party but it could also mean that some forces at least within it are prepared even to clash with the EU.

The second is the public displays of disagreement within the governing coalition against the EU elites' decision to ignore Syriza in their decision to blame the pro-Russia rebels (and indirectly Russia itself) for the attack on Mariupol and demand new stricter sanctions against Russia. In the event, Syriza keeps the same stand in the forthcoming EU meeting and rejects any new sanctions against Russia, effectively vetoing any proposal to this effect, this will be a very serious blow to the TE at a moment when its attack against Russia has sharply intensified, with the puppet regime's parliament in Kiev demanding from the UN, NATO etc. to declare Russia an 'aggressor state'[5] and the British establishment paper The Times promoting the view in a first page report  that Putin is "nothing more than a common criminal dressed up as a head of state"![6] Clearly such an attack, accompanied by the classifying of RT in the same league as ISIS,[7] shows an obvious TE intention to demonize Russia and its leadership, in exactly the same way as it did with Iraq and Saddam or Libya and Gadhafi, just before the launching of the brutal attacks against them. Again, this may be just a tactical move by Syriza  so that "they can leverage the threat of going along with the Russia-Turkish gas line (South stream 2.0/Nabucco Revisited) in order to get permission from the Troika (European Commission, International Monetary Fund, European Central Bank) to use more debt in order to mitigate austerity".[8]  However, it may also indicate that some forces within Syriza are seriously pondering on the crucial issue of the new geopolitical relations needed for a break with the EU to be effective.

In conclusion, there are two main options available to the new Greek Government:

a)    either the road to submission to the demands of the TE and the EU, with some concessions granted by the elites in exchange, as regards the conditions of repayment of the debt (and perhaps even the haircut of part of it) that will not however affect the main structural reforms already imposed. Namely, the opening and liberalization of markets and the consequent completion of the process of depriving Greece of the capability to regain any economic sovereignty in the future:--from controlling its own currency up to controlling its fiscal policy--and consequently its national sovereignty. The inevitable outcome of this effective about turn by Syriza will be to simply perpetuate the present economic and social catastrophe and lead to the death of the Left in Mediterranean Europe, following the death of it in the rest of Europe. Inevitably, in this case, the gap will be filled either by the nationalist anti-EU parties or by Popular Front governments, as I showed elsewhere.[9] 

b)    or the road  to resistance which involves the immediate unilateral exit from both the EU and the Eurozone, which will allow the introduction of strict capital controls and the re-introduction of the national currency, the nationalization of all banks including the Bank of Greece, the socialization of all key industries covering basic needs, as well as those involving the social wealth (oil, lignite, gold etc.). Needless to add that the geopolitical orientations of Greece should also change drastically, so that it will not be the subject of a new 'coup from below', like the one the TE successfully instigated in Ukraine. For this purpose, the exit from the EU should be accompanied by a parallel application to join the Eurasian Union, so that in case Cyprus and Turkey also join it (as it is highly likely), all of them, as equal  sovereign states, will be able to take part in negotiations to sort out rationally and in the spirit of solidarity all geopolitical and economic problems between them, which, up to now, have been used by the West and later the TE in order to divide the peoples in this part of the Mediterranean. In this way, the foundations for a new truly democratic community of sovereign nations will be created,  in place of the present criminal New World Order.

Takis Fotopoulos

Takis Fotopoulos is a political philosopher, editor of Society & Nature/ Democracy and Nature/The International Journal of Inclusive Democracy. He has also been a columnist for the Athens Daily Eleftherotypia since 1990. Between 1969 and 1989 he was Senior Lecturer in Economics at the University of North London (formerly Polytechnic of North London). He is the author of over 25 books and over 1,000 articles, many of which have been translated into various languages.


[1] See "The real causes of the catastrophic crisis in Greece and the 'Left"', Global Research, 16/1/2014; see, also

[2] See Takis Fotopoulos, Greece as a Protectorate of the Transnational Elite, Gordios (Athens, 2010)-in Greek

[3] Joaquin Flores, "Meaningful Economic Reforms Could Come Through BRICS and Russia?", Global Research, 27/1/2015 

[4] see "Left mythology and neoliberal globalization: Syriza and Podemos", The International Journal of Inclusive Democracy, Vol. 11, Nos. 1/2 (Winter-Summer 2015),

[5] "Ukrainian MPs call on UN, NATO & PACE to recognize Russia as 'aggressor state'", RT, 27/1/2015

[6] Deborah Haynes, 'Litvinenko was to expose 'criminal' Putin, The Times, 28/1/2015

[7] "Head of US state media put RT on same challenge list as ISIS, Boko Haram", RT, 23/1/2015

[8] Joaquin Flores, "Meaningful Economic Reforms Could Come Through BRICS and Russia?"

[9] "The imperative need for popular fronts of national and social liberation in the globalization era", The International Journal of INCLUSIVE DEMOCRACY, Vol. 10, Nos. 1/2 (Winter-Summer 2014)








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