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From The Socialist newspaper, 2 December 2015

Greece - general strike against austerity sees mass protests

By reporters from Xekinima (the Socialist Party's sister party in Greece)

On 12 November, the first 24-hour general strike in a long time took place - this time the strike was called against the policies of the ex-left Syriza government.

Syriza has transformed itself into a pro-bailout party and introduced a new austerity package.

After the new memorandum was signed by the Syriza government, which previously had given hope for real political change, the mood among workers was inevitably low.

In this climate, it is an extremely positive indication that the general strike on 12 November was relatively big. In Athens, around 30,000 people participated in the protests (the PAME union federation held the biggest), in Thessaloniki over 6,000 took part, and the protest in Volos was one of the most successful ones of the last few years.

The marches, despite being well-attended, were not vibrant. This is because, on the one hand, the working class understands the need to mobilise, but, on the other hand, people's appetite is limited without a plan on how to overturn the austerity policies.

There was also great paradox around the demonstration, as Syriza was calling on people to participate. In other words, the government party that is responsible politically for all the policies implemented is calling on people to participate in protests against them!

Xekinima (CWI Greece) campaigns for a break with austerity and for a socialist programme to meet the needs of the people and not the profits of the capitalists. This includes refusal to pay the debt; controls on capital flows; for the state monopoly of foreign trade; the nationalisation of the banks and the commanding heights of the economy under democratic workers' control and management.

Video of Andros Payiatsos from Xekinima addressing the Sunday rally at Socialism 2015 - see http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/articles/21705

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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

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  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
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In The Socialist 2 December 2015:


What we think

Don't bomb Syria! War vote reveals two Labour Parties in one


International socialist news and analysis

Greece - general strike against austerity sees mass protests

Eyewitness to the refugee crisis: a visit to 'The Jungle'

Belgium: ruling class can't be trusted with 'security'

Socialist takes third of vote in Hong Kong election


Socialist Party women

Women: fight for equality, fight for socialism


Socialist history

How the Iron Lady was reduced to iron filings


Socialist Party news and analysis

Action needed to save our NHS

Autumn Statement u-turns: austerity can be defeated

Student nurses must pay to work

Paris climate summit falls short in world's hottest year

London ambulances in special measures due to underfunding

Them & Us


Workplace news and analysis

Junior doctors' strike suspended for talks

JCB redundancies mitigated but fight needed

Open Uni strikers prepared to go the distance

Bus drivers fight bully-boy managers

Water workers protest against pension attacks

Workplace news in brief


Socialist readers' comments and reviews

Film review - The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2

A socialist Christmas gift guide

Letters


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Christmas 'collectathon': 8 to 17 December

Workers snap up the Socialist!

Protesters demand system change not climate change

Demonstration against the war

FBU fights the cuts in Yorkshire


 

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Related links:

Greece:

triangleGreece-Turkey border refugee crisis

triangleGreece elections: Syriza ousted amid voter disillusionment

triangleDeadly fires ravage Greece: austerity contributed to high loss of life and property

triangleObituary: Ged Travers 1957-2018

triangleCardiff West Socialist Party: Greece - still plundered by EU austerity

Strike:

triangleTower Hamlets council strike

triangle1920s Britain: A "country nearer Bolshevism than at any time since"

triangleThe Tyneside apprentices' strike during WW2

trianglePlymouth students discuss rent strike

General strike:

triangleBirmingham North Socialist Party: The General Strike and workers' power

triangleIndia: Bloody pogrom fuelled by Modi's sectarianism

triangleHackney Socialist Party: A general strike - What, how, why and when?

Austerity:

triangleBoris's new big deal

triangleNews in brief

Syriza:

triangleTories torn - bin them now

Xekinima:

triangleEurope and the workers' movement after Brexit

Protest:

triangleTories retreat on free school meals - the more we protest the more we can win

CWI:

triangleIndia: Fighting the curse of capitalism and coronavirus

Pay:

triangleReaders' opinion

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