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[12-16.01.2007] KKE's Contribution to the XIII meeting of the Forum of Sao Paulo

Dear comrades and friends

We are glad to be present in this meeting, here in Salvador and we express once more our thanks for the invitation. We would like to thank especially the FMLN for hosting the event. Its success will be the best way to honour the memory of Schafik Handal who passed away on 24th of January last year.

KKE follows as possible the developments and the trends in your region. The Greek communists have always been in firm solidarity with the peoples of the region and their struggles for their social and democratic rights, against the imperialist interventions, plans and projects like ALCA, Plan Colombia (Iniciativa Regional Andina) and the Plan Puebla-Panamá. We welcome the consolidation of the Bolivarian process and wish its further deepening and advance towards socialism in Venezuela.

We are voicing our protest against the state repression in Mexico, and we reiterate our strong solidarity with the popular movement in Colombia, rejecting vehemently the stance of the EU and the US that label the insurgency as terrorists, an argument they mobilize against everyone that resists their illicit plans.

KKE distinguishes the solidarity with Socialist Cuba as a priority task. Without doubts the Cuban revolution, its socialist system and its firm defense by the Cuban people have a particular contribution in the growth of the peoples’ movements and resistance in the region. It is no accident that the aggressiveness of the imperialists, of the US, the EU and the political forces that serve their interests become all the more aggressive. We regret to note that on several occasions in the European Parliament the anti-Cuban resolutions and the “human rights” hypocritical arguments that accompany them have received support and votes by parties that define themselves as left and progressive.

The issue is linked up with a major question that is put before the people and their movements: What is the way out?

The answer lies in the accurate characterization of the policy of the capitalist restructuring. Today we are facing a series of combined measures that in their essence are almost identical regardless of country, region, continent.

The so-called neo-liberal policy is not just a political choice generated solely by the change in the correlation of forces, or as some forces suggest a deviation from a supposedly “healthy” capitalism which may combine the laws of the market with social policy for the people, but an intrinsic need of the capitalist system.

There cannot be any real alternative that does not challenge the monopolies’ domination. The socialdemocratic idea of wealth redistribution without disturbing capitalist monopoly ownership over the means of production is, at best a dangerous illusion.

In the European Continent the Maastricht Treaty signed in 1992 represents what the Washington Consensus is for the Americas. This why all political forces –regardless of where they stand in the political spectrum from right to left- that accepted or conciliated with the result of this treaty, that is the EU, are unable to propose any substantial alternative to the neoliberal policy.

On the other hand, EU itself is charting a very systematic policy in order to assimilate political and social forces. Using various political and economic levers, it tries to shape a political system on the national and European level that will eventually serve its strategy with even greater stability. The EU decision to impose European parties was part of its plan to control the political system in the member states. This is why we declared our position publicly and criticised the foundation of European Parties, including the Party of the European Left which objectively hinders parties’ independence and unity of action in an anti-imperialist direction.

In our opinion the anti-imperialist, anti-monopoly struggle today is more organically linked with the struggle for socialism. The experience of your region, the role of Cuba, the debates in Venezuela and Bolivia, the resurgence of socialism as banner of popular movements in other countries are proof of this.

Speaking of our experience with the EU, we would like to note that its imperialist, reactionary nature is not only expressed in the anti-democratic, anti-social policies it promotes, in is support to the state-sponsored anticommunist and anti-socialist hysteria that is sweeping Europe. It is also evident in the participation of the EU in the imperialist new order, and is explicitly manifested in its imperialist, ne-colonial strategy towards the Latin America.

The nature of such integrations is determined, in the final instance, by the relations of production that they are based on and by the character of their leading powers.

Nowadays, several fables are seriously diluted. For instance, the myth that the EU will lead to the convergence between the countries, that it will upgrade the life standards and the democratic rights, in particular in the new member states; or even the claims that the EU constitutes an objectively progressive tendency, or even worse a reality that we must accept.

The sharpening of the inter-imperialist contradictions, both inside the Union, as well as in its relations and competition with other imperialist centres and forces, makes more visible the prospect and the possibility of a rupture within this imperialistic organisation, the possibility of disengagement and of detachment from it of countries that will select a different path of development; a socialist path of development that it is both possible and necessary.

The discussions for the socialist perspective today do not fall out of the blue. Regardless of these or those critics or different evaluations about the historical course of socialist countries, the problems and the causes that led to the temporary victory of the counter-revolution, the essential remains the same: the 20th century will go down in history as the century which was marked by the first, great historic attempt by humanity to throw off the bonds of capitalist exploitation of man by man. This historical experience of the socialism we have known constitutes a solid and advanced starting point for the fight for socialism in the 21st century; it has inherited valuable knowledge about the general laws that govern the building of socialism namely: The revolutionary gaining of power by the working class and its allies. The nationalisation of the main means of production. The socialist planning of the economy. The class nature of the socialist state, that irrespective of the form it may assume, will be a revolutionary power of the working class.

Pursuing for people’s alternatives in the direction to socialism one cannot but address the question of alliances.

It is beyond doubt that any alliance of this kind will be composed by forces that, while fighting for the establishment of a popular power, maintain and develop their own particular concept on the nature and forms of the popular power; they reflect different trends and forces from the point of view of their social position and ideological and political stance. So, it is normal that every force taking part in the struggle retains its own viewpoints on the issue, and consequently retains ideological and organizational independence.

Our experience suggests that the Communist Parties while consistently fighting for the unity of broader anti-imperialist forces, they should not diffuse themselves nor shed their identity. This does not hinder the unity and strength of the popular forces. On the contrary, it may have a positive impact and shields the popular alliance from unnecessary concessions, premature assumptions or unrealistic expectations.

In our opinion in this struggle the role of the communist party, being far from been exclusive, is indispensable and critical for the outcome of the struggle. The course of the last decades has refuted those that were claiming the “end of history” and the “inevitable demise” of Marxism-Leninism and the communist parties. On the contrary the developments themselves highlight the indispensable role of communist parties consistent to the revolutionary principles and project the socialism as the only alternative to the capitalist barbarity.
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