KOE: Greek Communists on the election outcome

This statement was released in Greek on 17 June 2012 at 2100 by the Press Office of the Communist Organization of Greece. KOE is the second largest organization with the Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA). The original Greek version follows the English translation

Communist Organization of Greece (KOE):

Initial Thoughts on the Electoral Outcome

ATHENS, GREECE - We welcome the substantial political energy directed towards the Left, the substantial energy of the people seeking salvation for the country, ignoring unprecedented anti-democratic pressure from the network of domestic centers of political and economic power, and global imperialist institutions [1].


To a large degree, these elections were centered on the morale of the Greek people. The Greek people recognize the way forward, so that even the pro-austerity forces were compelled to adopt a lukewarm anti-austerity rhetoric in their electoral campaigns.

The Greek people forged conviction, trust and confidence in SYRIZA based on its struggles. And then, there was an attempt to crush that confidence and trust all during the period leading up to the June election.

These attempts were not successful. On the contrary, SYRIZA demonstrated itself as a central political actor in the life of our community.

The Greek people are now recovering and building their fighting spirit. No one can fail to appreciate this reality.

If, in the coming days, some pro-austerity administration is created, those will be days of darkness and desperation for our people.

Yet they will also lead to a rise in fighting will -- to transform all this  political energy into a powerful current of change, to bring about an actual overthrow of the Troika,  a actual way out of the crisis for Greece.

With its new seats in the parliament and its base among the people, SYRIZA will take up its responsibility. It will bear the burden of representing the people’s aspirations and embodying their hope of opening a road to the future.

Regarding the pro-austerity forces, none dares to openly declare their real politics and they camouflage their politics with a rhetoric of “re-negotiation” of the Memoranda with the Troika, although they continue to be quite willing to implement anti-people policies. Simultaneously, they ask for unprecedented concessions from SYRIZA and endorsement of their politics.

SYRIZA will not grant them this favor and will insist on remaining near and with the people. That is SYRIZA’s position.

Translator’s note:

[1] This passage refers to network of Greek and foreign conglomerates, large capitalist media concerns, specific institutional centers within the Greek state and international institutions of power (e.g., the U.S. military and the Troika). Illustrations of this capitalist network of power in Greece are in abundance. For example, in order for Greece to obtain the privilege of hosting the Olympic Games, an agreement was reached between the Greek state and the U.S. for the country to purchase U.S. military equipment as a condition for the American assent. This equipment proved to be inoperable upon delivery.

The original Greek text:

Πρώτες σκέψεις για το εκλογικό αποτέλεσμα

Χαιρετίζουμε το μεγάλο πολιτικό ρεύμα που στρέφεται προς τα Αριστερά, το μεγάλο ρεύμα του λαού που ζητά την σωτηρία της χώρας, αγνοώντας τις πρωτοφανείς αντιδημοκρατικές πιέσεις από εξωθεσμικά παγκόσμια ιμπεριαλιστικά και εγχώρια διαπλεκόμενα κέντρα.


Οι εκλογές σε μεγάλο βαθμό ήταν εκλογές γύρω από το φρόνημα του ελληνικού λαού. Ο ελληνικός λαός γνωρίζει καλά το ποια είναι η σωστή κατεύθυνση, εξάλλου ακόμα και οι μνημονιακές δυνάμεις αναγκάστηκαν να προβάλουν μια χλιαρή αντιμνημονιακή ρητορική.

Ο ελληνικός λαός διαμόρφωσε ένα φρόνημα που το σφυρηλάτησε σε αγώνες και εμπιστοσύνη γύρω από το ΣΥΡΙΖΑ. Αυτό στοχοποιήθηκε και επιδιώχτηκε να συντριβεί.

Όχι μόνο δεν το πέτυχαν, αλλά αντίθετα ανάδειξε τον ΣΥΡΙΖΑ σε βασικό πρωταγωνιστή της πολιτικής και κοινωνικής ζωής του τόπου.

Ο ελληνικός λαός ανορθώνεται και κτίζει το αγωνιστικό του φρόνημα και κανείς πλέον δεν μπορεί να μην πάρει υπόψη του αυτήν την πραγματικότητα.

Οι μέρες που έρχονται εφόσον δημιουργηθεί μνημονιακή κυβέρνηση θα είναι μαύρες μέρες και μέρες δυστυχίας για το λαό μας. Θα οδηγήσουν όμως στο να γιγαντώσουν το φρόνημα και θα μετατρέψουν το πολιτικό ρεύμα σε ένα ποτάμι μεγάλης αλλαγής, ανατροπής και διεξόδου της χώρας.

Ο ΣΥΡΙΖΑ από νέες θέσεις μέσα στη Βουλή και μέσα στο λαό θα αναλάβει όλες τις ευθύνες και θα σηκώσει το βάρος της έκφρασης του πόθου και της ελπίδας που ανοίγουν δρόμους.

Από τις μνημονιακές δυνάμεις, καμία δεν τολμάει να πει ανοιχτά την πραγματική τους πολιτική και καμουφλάρονται σε αναδιαπραγματευτικές ρητορικές, ενώ πάλι είναι πρόθυμες να εφαρμόσουν την πιο αντιλαϊκή πολιτική. Παράλληλα ζητάνε το πρωτοφανές, ο ΣΥΡΙΖΑ να προσχωρήσει στην πολιτική τους και να συμμετάσχει στην εφαρμογή της.

Ο ΣΥΡΙΖΑ όχι μόνο δεν θα τους κάνει την χάρη αλλά θα είναι εκεί που πρέπει: κοντά και μαζί με το λαό. Καμία άλλη θέση δεν υπάρχει για τον ΣΥΡΙΖΑ.

17/6/2012, ώρα 21:00

People in this conversation

  • Guest - Gary

    <blockquote>"If, in the coming days, some pro-austerity administration is created, those will be days of darkness and desperation for our people. Yet they will also lead to a rise in fighting will — to transform all this political energy into a powerful current of change, to bring about an actual overthrow of the Troika, a actual way out of the crisis for Greece."</blockquote>

    As Mao put it, "wherever there is oppression, there is resistance and struggle." The electoral triumph of the oppressors is disappointing and saddening. But won't it not just set up the victors for (further) discrediting, and insure they'll be the objects of mounting rage, as the oppressive austerity measures are implemented?

  • Guest - Aaron Aarons

    Excerpt from Reuters article, "Greek rage to force bailout changes: Tsipras"

    &gt; Asked about strategy after Sunday's election, Tsipras signaled that Syriza would not call its supporters onto the streets to protest against the austerity measures. The bloc of 12 leftist groupings would instead focus its energy on creating "a shield of protection for those on the margins".

    &gt; "Solidarity and resistance are both important, but right now solidarity is the most important," he said. "Our role is to be inside and outside parliament, applauding anything positive and condemning all that is negative and proposing alternatives."

    &gt; Clearly relishing his new-found international fame and his fast-rising popularity at home, Tsipras suggested his greatest moment was yet to come however.

    &gt; "Greece needs courageous and decisive leaders who can use the rage of our people...as a weapon to negotiate for the benefit of the country", he said.


    Sound's pretty damned reformist to me. Is it an accurate summary of what Tsipras is saying? What does the KOE or any of the other putatively revolutionary groupings in Syriza have to say about this?

  • Guest - Keith

    I remember reading about Henry Kissinger's conversations with Nixon when the were negotiating with Mao. Mao made a speech where he denounced "imperialism" and Nixon thought that speech was meant to ice the negotiations. Kissinger said, read wht he said carefully. He didn't say anything against the U.S.

    The point is that Tsipiras is speaking simultaneously to many different audiences, so I would be surprised to see Tsipiras saying "Hey over here! I am big bad revolutionary communist and I am coming to get you!!!" It isn't a checkers game. SYRIZA is being offered cabinet positions in a New Democracy led government which it is refusing. That speaks louder then words.

    I think that the electoral outcome should be seen as a victory. Maybe not as decisive as hoped for but a victory nonetheless.

    And maybe the best possible outcome for the time being.

    SYRIZA was the only party to make significant electoral gains since the last round of elections. In other words SYRIZA is growing and developing while the other parties are disintegrating and dying. SYRIZA pulled about a third of the KKE's vote.

    Tsipiras is saying that SYRIZA will remain as an opposition within parliament, but who cares what he says. He probably doesn't even believe it himself. The bourgeois press doesn't believe that Tsipiras can contain all the groups within SYRIZA. Plus, New Democracy needs some rope to hang itself with. If SYRIZA simply obstructs then they will be blamed for the inevitable failure. There is little doubt that the New Democracy led government will fail. They are on a fools errand.

    No one believes that New Democracy will be able to form a government and implement the austerity. For one, as Tsipiras keeps saying the austerity measures will make it impossible to pay down the debt. And if Greece is pushed out of the EU the EU will collapse. The EU is probably going to collapse anyway. The Financial Times, today, called SYRIZA the government in waiting. That is probably the best spot to be in right now. New Democracy got a significant percentage of the vote which means significant sectors of Greek society still believe that the old way is possible. They will soon find out they were mistaken.

    The situation in Europe is going to get a lot worse. Spain, Italy, and Portugal's bondholder's will need a "bailout" but they are unlikely to get it since German would have to pay for it. It would be like me asking you to pay off my hefty credit card bill. It would be far more difficult to do then TARP was in the U.S. because in the U.S. case the U.S government gave money to U.S. banks. Germans are not going to want to give billions to foreign banks. It isn't going to happen.

    SYRIZA is well positioned for the coming crisis. I would withhold judging them as reformists or revisionists for a minute.

  • Guest - Aaron Aarons

    So, Keith, Mao's using non-specific anti-imperialist rhetoric while sucking up to the big-time imperialists while the latter were bombing the hell out of Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos is a model for ...what???

    You write, "SYRIZA is being offered cabinet positions in a New Democracy led government which it is refusing. That speaks louder then words." Is the best thing you can say about SYRIZA that they refuse to accept cabinet positions in a right-wing government that stands for almost everything they ran against? I suspect that most of their critics on the left would not damn them with such faint praise.

    You seem to be concerned that "If SYRIZA simply obstructs then they will be blamed for the inevitable failure." But what is worse, being blamed by pro-capitalist middle layers for the failure of an anti-working-class program or being correctly blamed by conscious workers and other anti-capitalists for failing to obstruct New Democracy and its allies in their continued and extended attacks on workers and the oppressed?

    I certainly hope that every supposed leftist in the Greek parliament not only does their best to obstruct every anti-working-class, anti-poor measure that the new government tries to pass, but that they use their voice in parliament to encourage and inspire extra-parliamentary direct action against the implementation of every such measure and for the implementation of measures (not passed by parliament) to defend the well-being of workers and all the oppressed.

  • Guest - Jim Monaghan

    Greece: Fear triumphs, but hope continues
    ANTENTAS Josep Maria
    18 June 2012

    The troika sighs with relief. There will be a new pro-Memorandum government in Greece. The weakest link in the Euro zone has not snapped. The financial oligarchy has lived through a worrying few days, as if a ghost had returned to haunt them, but yesterday bought some time, giving a precarious underpinning to a collapsing scaffold. But the ghost has come back to stay.

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