Greek Stalinists welcome fascist involvement in workers dispute

The Greek Communist Party (KKE) have seemingly welcomed the involvement of the a fascist organisation, into a long running steelworkers strike in Athens.

Submitted by working class … on February 27, 2012

Last year I recall being disgusted at the coverage in the Morning Star regarding clashes between anarchists and Stalinists outside the Greek parliament.

The Greek Communist Party (KKE) had forcibly prevented anarchists from getting to the parliament and had been observed collaborating with the police and encouraging them to attack anarchist protestors. The Morning Star would have you believe the opposite.

If there was every any doubt regarding the KKE’s dubious politics that doubt has completely disappeared following their latest stunt.

Steelworkers in a factory on the outskirts of Athens have been in a dispute with management for several months. And have been on an indefinite strike following the bosses trying to implement a 40% pay cut.

PAME the trade union coalition of the Greek Communist Party (KKE) has played a key role throughout the dispute.

The events on Friday 17th February and the conduct of the KKE are beyond contempt:

http://www.leftcom.org/en/articles/2012-02-21/a-stalinist-welcome-to-a-nazi-intervention-into-a-workers-strike-in-greece

“On Friday 17 February a group of the notorious fascist party the 'Golden Dawn' visited the factory; they passed unmolested through the gate, took the microphone and made a speech to the strikers expressing their ‘solidarity’ in the presence of some members of the union. Then, the president of the factory trade union welcomed the fascists, saying that ‘all Greece is with us’.”

First you see the Nazis making a speech and then the president welcomes the Nazis. The union’s president, Giorgos Sifonios, is a member of PAME and he was a candidate of the KKE in the district elections in 1998. Until now PAME haven’t given any explanation, and they haven’t tried to dissociate themselves from that event. So, it is justified to assume that the president acted according to party policy. Otherwise, they would have expelled him immediately.

Doing this the Stalinist KKE have brought the fascists into the workers movement. For the time being I cannot explain their stance. I suppose that this is due to the active intervention of anarchists in that strike. As a matter of fact, many anarchist groups energetically supported the strikers and expressed their solidarity with them through many actions. As supporters of spontaneity they may idealize such a strike. So, maybe it will be a great discouragement on their part after that event.

‘Golden Dawn’ is a well-known fascist group. They started as pure ‘national socialists’ and later they mixed Nazism up with the traditions of the Greek far-right. But, anyway, they are famous as pro-Nazi. They are responsible for many attacks against immigrants. Clearly, it is a ‘para state’ group and they have close connections with the police and army. They have a growing influence especially in popular and workers areas and they are expected to win a good percentage (about 3-4%) in the upcoming elections.”

The Golden Dawn] is a Nazi group who have carried out who have well known links to the police and armed forces. The actions of the KKE in welcoming a fascist group into a workers dispute is a disgrace, and it should be condemned as widely as possible.

Surprisingly, the Morning Star has not reported on this.

Fascists speaking at the factory

Comments

madashell

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by madashell on February 27, 2012

Despicable, it's not that long ago that a migrant syndicalist had acid thrown in her face by fascists, now the Stalinists give them a platform at a rally.

communal_pie

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by communal_pie on February 27, 2012

Shocking but not unexpected, they are really good at twisting things too so no doubt they have a really really good explanation for this.

communal_pie

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by communal_pie on February 27, 2012

The explanation from KKE/PAME appears to be that the guy sharing the platform was taking things into his own hands (as if senior figures' actions don't say something about an organisation thats collaborated with fascists many times before).

It's sick.

Cleishbotham

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Cleishbotham on February 28, 2012

There is an update on our (ICT) website (the KKE are now bizarrely using the incident in their perpetual war against the ultra-left - in this case mainly the the anarchists trying to demonstrate that only they are the real firends of teh wrokers.

The sharing of a platform with the Nazis is as some commentators not a cause for surprise - they share the same nationalist outlook and thye are all playing electoral games in this incident.

The Greek working class has a long way to go before it can act autonomously (of all capitalists factions like the KKE) and politically .... but the situation is not standing still.

jef costello

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by jef costello on February 28, 2012

This is shocking, although in some ways not surprising.

gypsy

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by gypsy on February 28, 2012

I hope next time the golden dawn turn up at a strike picket they are told where to go. What a joke.

keepsraining

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by keepsraining on February 28, 2012

YOU use a real fact(the visiting of the strikers from the facists),to say bad things about the communistic patry and the workers fight against EU,the new labour laws,and the unneployment.
truth is that the workers had to accept the visiting,but if you listen to the speach of the union president ,is against the facist party and their politicians that are allready in the parliament with another facist party(LAOS).
TRY NOT TO SAY LIES ,especially when they are about the greek workers and their heroic fight they give for over 3 months in this specific industry,and for many decades generally through the communist party that is always with them.

keepsraining

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by keepsraining on February 28, 2012

sick is your propaganda and nothing more

communal_pie

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by communal_pie on February 28, 2012

It won't work pal, even members of PAME & KKE are distancing themselves from this little act, you admin: no flaming

Mark.

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mark. on February 28, 2012

.

.

working class …

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by working class … on February 29, 2012

"truth is that the workers had to accept the visiting"

Had to accept the visit???? I would be going to prison for my actions before I let a fascist group come into my workplace!!!! Absolute SCUM. The KKE are class traitors, who have been shown to collaborate with the police and fascists to protect the state. The are the enemies of the working class... fuck them!

Mark.

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mark. on February 29, 2012

As far as I can see it was the steelworkers and the union within the factory who allowed Golden Dawn in. I don't see how this can be blamed directly on the KKE as a whole. If they'd been asked I don't believe they would have agreed to it. Part of the problem is that flag waving nationalism runs through Greek society and most of the Greek left. I don't think the KKE are even the worst offenders on the left for this. In the current crisis there's an obvious opening for the right to tap into this nationalist sentiment and try and appeal to the left's support base. There's no shortage of reasons to criticise the KKE but maybe there's some point scoring going on here.

The steelworkers strike is still going on and has had plenty of support from anarchists, and I suppose support is still needed. tbh I'm not sure how people should react to the Golden Dawn visit, or how much to make of it.

Serge Forward

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Serge Forward on February 29, 2012

Mark, I'd agree with you, but... if the union is under the 'control' of the KK and if the party shared a platform with this lot, then... you know, if you lie down with dogs and all that...

soc

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by soc on February 29, 2012

I'm with Mark on this one. In fact, this occasion is kind of a symptom of how the Greek situation is now at this moment.

I have some experience back from Hungary of the rising nationalist/fash sentiment and how it changes the general rhetoric of the left. In the wake of the first austerity waves with the re-elected Socialist government (socialist as in the Labour Party with Tony Blair, or the PASOK for that matter), the working class desperation was channelled into a complete set of nationalist sentiment, resulted in the riots back then. Ever since, the economical hardship was not relieved but it was always blamed on the external forces (EU/IMF... Jews, Roma people, Illuminati, a choice for all layers of the society) and even the current government has great success in pushing all these desperate feelings on to the last government, and to these international bodies.

I came to believe that at some ideological level, the IMF, but EU especially have a preplanned indirect role of being the external evil in face of popular unrest, thus in times of political instability, it would rather give a way to a right/nationalist/fash-alike disintegration of the free trade agreements than turn into a complete revolutionary wave sweeping through the whole continent. If you couple this with the sentiment against immigration (which is a genuine working class issue as a pressure on wages in times of stagnation or recession) I won't expect much changes in this trend from the mainstream politics of Europe any time soon. While the resistance of the Greek working class is amazing, I'm worried that our anarchist comrades over there soon will be more isolated than ever.

The only thing that could prove as a seed of a more genuine internationalist, revolutionary response to this regime, and possible turn this trend around would be to act more tightly together between different European countries, and with the emphasis on the necessity of acting together, in solidarity. There were attempts of organising European days of action, but were so far very vague, and mostly due to the fact that the mainstream left ceased to exist in many countries, turning the party base to a basically right-wing, semi-nationalist, neo-liberal narrative (this looks more and more like an "absolutist democracy" where the painful decisions are always coming from institutes who has no interest and stake of satisfying the voters - as they are unelected or represent an international pressure group).

petros

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by petros on February 29, 2012

To Mr. keepsraining
You wrote that:
«if you listen to the speach of the union president ,is against the facist party»

So, It seems that you speak Greek. Me too. Because I’m Greek.
So the full welcome-speech of Giorgos Sifonios –president of the trade union and member of PAME- is the following:
‘We have all Greece on our side. We see what happens for example inside the black front of the government, such as PASOK, LAOS, who went along with the government of New Democracy. Today we see very clearly Voridis and Georgiadis, acceding to this front. It’s political games but they want to crush the workers’.
‘Golden Dawn’ is ‘a part of Greece’, of course, and the Nazis are not a part of ‘the black front’ against workers.
Voridis and Georgiadis were leading cadres of the far-rightist LAOS, deputies and members of the cabinet in the last government of Papadimos. When LAOS refused to agree with the last austerity measures of ‘troika’, seeing that they are going to lose many votes, they walked out from the coalition government. But Voridis and Georgiadis refused to vote against the new agreement with troika and they expelled from LAOS. Now they have joined New Democracy.
‘Golden Dawn’ see LAOS as their main competitor, accusing them for being fake-nationalists, and they wait to win a great part of their dissatisfied voters. So, Sifonios tried to raised their prestige.

Mark.

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Mark. on March 1, 2012

There's a 10 page thread on this on revleft. If anyone feels like wading through it there are some reasonable points made, besides the nonsense, including some from the apologists for KKE.

sankar ray

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by sankar ray on March 5, 2012

KKE leader Aleka Papariga presented a paper at the Rosa Luxembourg Conference in Berlin in January 2008. It was published in Marxist - http://cpim.org/marxist/200801_marxist_greece_Papariga.pdf - , theoretical quarterly of Communist Party of India (Marxist), whose founding polit bureau member, the late Promode Dasgupta, used to say - "We understand Marxism-Leninism the same as Comrade Stalin. It led the Left Front government in the state of West Bengal and did a series of counter-revolutionary activities such as creation of a state of terror that led to 28,000 killings - mostly political ( almost wholly its opposition parties) in the first 20 years (1977-97). It suffered a humiliating defeat to a non-Left party in 2011. It has bonhomie with Stalinist KKE

vhs

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by vhs on March 22, 2012

Here's an answer/explanation from PAME. According to this, the fascists came under false pretexts and the party didn't know until it was too late.

“The board of the trade union of the workers of the Helliniki Halivourgia condemns the attempt of the fascist organisation “Hrisi Avgi” and other groups to provocate, to slander and discredit our heroic struggle."

http://www.pamehellas.gr/fullstory.php?lang=2&wid=2285

Just posting it here because it's relevant for the discussion and informed judgement. I have no idea about what's what.

no.25

12 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by no.25 on March 25, 2012

Word is that the fascists in Greece are forming militias...

http://translate.google.com/translate?sl=auto&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fpatriotikipolitofilaki.blogspot.com%2F

Zwi

12 years 1 month ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Zwi on April 3, 2012

kke was not there. fascists just came bringing some supplies and the workers accepted them. later the union complaint for exploiting the "event" by the golden dawn fascists. kke is the main enemy of golden dawn. revisionists try to deterogate the facts

Entdinglichung

11 years 11 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Entdinglichung on June 11, 2012

http://spartacist.org/english/leaflets/votekke.html

Howard Phillips

5 years 2 months ago

In reply to by libcom.org

Submitted by Howard Phillips on March 14, 2019

I think its despicable how _some_ Anarchists just lie in blatant disregard for truth and split the working class movement.

The KKE was not present when the Fascists showed up.

As already stated, members of the union denounced the fascists.

Ask yourselves this comrades, and be honest. Would the KKE really have any reason to support the Golden Dawn? For what possible purpose? KKE and Golden Dawn members have literally killed each other.

Comrades, this type of lying just makes Anarchism look bad and demonstrates lack of critical thinking or lack of honesty.