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Balkan Meeting 2009, Intervention by KKE

Dear comrades,

Welcome to Thessaloniki to the Meeting of Balkan Communist and Workers’ Parties which is held on an initiative of our Party and has as its theme “the struggles and the experiences of the communists under the conditions of the world capitalist crisis”.

This meeting coincides with the 20th anniversary since the escalation of the counterrevolutionary developments in Central and Eastern Europe which were celebrated by opportunists and bourgeois forces at the various events organised in Berlin. We can sum up what these 20 years actually brought for the peoples in Balkans, in Central and Eastern Europe in a few words: unemployment, abolition of historical social gains, cruel exploitation of the working class and the other popular strata, poverty for the majority of the people and super-profits for the plutocracy, imperialist wars, dissolution of states, depleted uranium. The celebrations of the bourgeois opportunist parties about the alleged “victory of democracy” in the former socialist countries are totally false and hypocritical. If we look their democracy in the eyes we will see that it is all about the aggressiveness of the capital, the brutal exploitation, the oppression of the working people and the repression measures aiming at preventing the class struggle and every attempt to overthrow the exploitative capitalist system. The bourgeois political forces in Poland have shown this once again clearly by banning the communist symbols and imposing heavy penalties of imprisonment and fines. It is an outrageous decision that follows the previous decision taken by the EU and its bodies as well as the parliamentary assembly of the OSCE. From this podium we would like to express our solidarity with the communist party of Poland that is now acting under very hard conditions since except from the anticommunist article 13 of the Polish constitution the criminal prosecution of communists is also under way. The 11th International Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties was held successfully in New Delhi, India a few weeks ago. The Meeting discussed the situation created by the capitalist crisis, the experiences from the workers’ and peoples’ struggles, the objectives and the role of the communist parties and the workers’ movement. It issued a statement stressing that we are witnessing a crisis of the capitalist system that shows its historical limits and the need for its revolutionary overthrow. The statements underlines the responsibilities of the bourgeois forces both liberal and social democrat ones and reiterates that the communist and workers’ parties shall work actively to rally and mobilize the widest possible sections of the popular forces in the struggle for full time stable employment and for the social rights as a whole.

In addition the meeting adopted the following principles for the joint action of communist and workers’ parties:

1. against NATO and its global expansion, against the imperialist military aggressiveness that takes on new forms, against the foreign military bases.

2. to establish the 29th November as a day of solidarity with the struggle of the Palestinian people according to the decision of the Extraordinary eeting held in Damascus in September 2009.

3. to highlight the 65th anniversary since the defeat of fascism in year 2010 strengthen the people’s mobilisations for the defence of the workers’ rights in cooperation with the trade union organisations

5. to intensify the international solidarity for the liberation of the 5 Cuban patriots

6. to reinforce the people’s mobilisations and the pressure to the governments demanding the right to work in cooperation with youth organisations.

KKE about the crisis

Dear comrades,

The international capitalist economy is going through a profound crisis characterized mainly by its extensive synchronization. Since its early manifestations, our party had been ideologically and politically prepared and it made an important effort to enlighten the workers about the character of the crisis as a crisis of over-accumulation and over production.

It refuted the deliberate propaganda of the government and the other political forces arguing that it is merely a crisis of the financial system or a crisis of neo-liberalism. It levelled criticism at the position that the so-called casino or greedy capitalism, the wages and the irresponsibility of the golden boys in the banks and former state-owned enterprises are responsible for the crisis as the liberal, social democrat and opportunist forces argued.

Our party revealed the misleading conflict between “extreme liberalism” and “extreme statism” promoted as the allegedly main difference between the social-democrat and liberal management.

It explained to the working people that both Keynesian and neo-liberal policies lead to the capitalist crisis, which is inherent in the capitalist system and its anarchic development. We refuted with arguments the systematic effort of the other political forces to limit the discussion to the conflict between the so-called healthy and non healthy capitalism.

We proved that the real cause of the crisis is the sharpening of the main contradiction of capitalism, the contradiction between the social character of production and appropriation of its results due to the fact that the means of production are under capitalist ownership.

We unveiled the slogan “people before profits” promoted by the social-democrat forces such as SYRIZA bringing forward the need to abolish the capitalist profits namely the construction of a socialist society having as its driving force the satisfaction of the peoples needs.

The responsibilities of social democracy and opportunists

The recent elections in October led to the formation of a social-democrat government by PASOK which, in the name of the crisis and the safeguarding of capital’s profit making, is ready to take a series of anti-people’s measures against the social security and labour rights of the working people affecting particularly the women and the youth. In addition, it invited trade-unions and parties to social partnership talks seeking to achieve the biggest possible social consensus that will enable the imposition of the anti-people’s measures. The position of KKE and the class oriented trade union movement that rallies in All Militant Workers’ Front (PAME) has been clear: “do not participate in the social partnership talks! Reject social consensus! Class war against the anti-people’s measures of the government, which are supported by the EU and serve solely the interests of the domestic and foreign plutocracy!

On the contrary, the forces of the government and employer-led trade-unionism participated in this fixed game while the opportunist forces took part in the beginning of the talks in order to create the illusion that solutions in favour of the people can emerge from such talks. SYRIZA with its so-called left alternative proposal plays a leading role in the disorientation of the popular strata that seek a way out. With its stance it leads to the disarmament of the movement, it prevents its emancipation from the ruling policy and the false dilemmas of the bipartisan alternation.

The real solution to the problems of the working people does not lie in the ambiguous proposals of the forces of SYN/SYRIZA and the other forces of the European Left Party but in the strategy of the anti-monopoly struggle and rupture till the end, till the overthrow of the monopolies power.

The action of KKE under the conditions of the crisis and the capital’s attack

KKE formulated, both at the Parliament and the people’s struggles, a platform of immediate measures in favour of the employees, the poor peasantry, the self-employed, the youth and the women according to the principle and the slogan that the working people should not accept paying for the crisis of the system but on the contrary they should demand the improvement of their position.

Communists along with other forces are work for the reconstruction of the trade union movement. They decisively support PAME, which has been in the forefront of the struggle to prevent the dismissals announced in tens of enterprises on the occasion of the crisis; likewise in the struggles to prevent the reduction of salaries, the reduction of the working week, and the flexible forms of employment. In many cases, the readiness and the militant stance of the class oriented trade union organisations contributed to the reinstatement of workers and revealed the line of consensus and “social peace” that is the unconditional surrender of the workers to the big capital.

Our party supported the struggle of the metalworkers in the Perama ship-repair zone who were attacked by the repression forces outside the ministry of Labour. It was also in solidarity with the struggle of the workers in the biggest port of the country against the handover of the port to the Chinese multinational corporation COSCO. It supported the tens of thousands of youths employed in the stage programs in public sector who were dismissed by the government of PASOK as well as the thousands of construction workers who went on strike over the last months. Through strikes, demonstrations, sit-ins and other forms of struggle the class-oriented forces rescind dismissals, force the employers to reinstate dismissed workers, sign collective labour contracts that provide increases exceeding the incomes policy and intercept the attacks against immigrants.

KKE along with the class-oriented movement confront these difficulties and are particularly demanding regarding the strengthening of the ideological, political, mass struggle for the liberation of working-popular forces from the influence of the bourgeois policy and ideology, reformism.

The strengthening and the effectiveness of the struggle of the class-pole of the movement require its orientation against the efforts to place the burden of the crisis on people’s shoulders; likewise the promotion of demands that meet the people’s needs (full-stable employment, substantial increases in wages and pensions, exclusively free, public healthcare, welfare education system etc). With the slogans “The law is the right of the worker, not of the capitalist” and “the crisis must be paid by the plutocracy”, “full, stable employment, wages and pensions that respond to the contemporary needs, exclusively public, free Healthcare, Welfare, Education” tens of thousands of workers participated a couple of days ago, on 17 December, in the 24 hour Panhellenic Strike called by branch federations, trade union centres and primary trade unions that struggle through the ranks of PAME against the consensus of the leadership of GSEE-ADEDY confederations. It was a significant, militant response to the plans of PASOK government to further restrict workers’ achievements in the field of Social Security. This particularly important front of struggle must embrace all workplaces, factories, enterprises, construction sites, department stores and transform them into “fortresses” of counterattack to the anti-peoples plans of the government that also have the support of the main opposition party, ND, and of the EU.

Along with the reconstruction of the labour-trade union movement, KKE considers necessary the organizational strengthening of the working class Party in the workplaces. Communists in Greece promote as a basic priority the duty of party building in workplaces, while they orientate the action of local organisations in the workplaces of their territory. The party building is mainly directed towards the working class and the youth.

During this period our Party has further broadened the ideological front against the bourgeois parties and opportunist forces and stressed that the source of the crisis will only dry up with the abolition of the capitalist property, the elimination of the anarchy in the capitalist production. This requires the socialization of the basic and concentrated means of production, central planning of people’s economy and workers-people’s control. This will be the content of a people’s economy regime for which will struggle not only communists but also a broad social-political Front that will represent the forces of the working class, the poor and medium scale peasantry and the rest of the popular strata in the city. This is the political proposal of KKE that rejects the ambiguous schemes of “unity of the Left” and the centre-left administration considering that the interests of the working class and of the other popular strata can only be ensured by Peoples’ power that for communists is socialism of course.

With regards to this effort, our Party does not leave unanswered the anticommunist campaign of the EU. We organize dozens of mass events about socialism in neighbourhoods and universities throughout the country. The Resolution of the 18th Congress of our Party regarding the assessments of the overthrow of socialism and the perception of KKE on socialism constitutes an important basis in this effort.

KKE and the intra-imperialist contradictions


Yesterday the UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen came to an end. Despite the declarations and fanfare, the sharpening of the inter-imperialist contradictions in the energy field cannot be concealed. An effort for the over-accumulated capitals to find a profitable way-out through the so-called “green economy”, that is the commercialization of the environmental protection and of the climate change, is underway.

This Conference, as the recent Summit Conference of the OSCE Foreign Ministers in Athens, shows that the capitalist crisis sharpens the intra-imperialist contradictions in conditions of serious upheavals; reduce of US participation in world GDP, powerful presence of the EU, reinforcement of China, Russia, India and Brazil. Workers should not have any illusions about the so-called “multi-polar world”, about the slogans of social-democracy about the “democratization of the UN” or “a new architecture of the international relations”. These slogans intend to humanize the imperialist barbarity. There has never been a “unipolar world”! Intra-imperialist contradictions have always existed. Nevertheless, in the past they were mitigated due to the need to confront the USSR and the other socialist countries. Today, we witness a new intensification of the intra-imperialist contradictions as well as the pursuit of several rising imperialist forces and alliances to play an upgraded role in the international affairs which is described through the scheme of a “multi-polar world”.

In fact, imperialism is characterized by the drive for markets and natural resources, interventions and wars. Communists have assumed great responsibilities as regards the enlightenment and mobilization of the peoples against the imperialist wars and interventions, the occupation of countries by the imperialists, against NATO, the EU and any other imperialist organization and centre, regardless of the “color”, name or region they are formed in.


as regards our region the new PASOK government gives priority to the full expansion of NATO in Balkans, to the accession of all Balkan countries to NATO until 2014. It seeks a more active involvement of Greece in the imperialist plans. Furthermore, the Greek government upgrades the participation of Greece in the occupation of Afghanistan and discusses the accession to the anti-missile shield. In this framework it promotes the accession of the rest Balkan countries to the EU and NATO presenting it as only solution for the peaceful resolution of all problems in the region. KKE revealed that NATO and EU are unions of the capital; that they cannot ensure security and peace for the peoples in the region but on the contrary they constitute tools for the increase of the oppression and exploitation of all peoples.

The worsening of workers’ life in the Balkan countries, the reinforcement of the imperialist organisations, the measures of repression against communists and the anti-imperialist movement that are taken throughout Europe, also increase the need to act in a better, more organized and coordinated manner through the ranks of the anti-imperialist, anti-NATO and mass labour movement.

The main condition, though, in order to further develop our action, to pave the way for people’s power, socialism, is to reinforce the role of Communist and Workers’ Parties. This would facilitate a better coordination of action and joint activities among the CP. More specifically:

1 We consider as an important element the labour solidarity and unity that can develop among workers in the Balkan peoples, in the mobilizations that take place in Balkan countries. That requires the CP to promptly inform about these mobilizations and assist the communication of the class trade union forces that struggle against the anti-people measures and the provocations of the employers.

2 We daily note the need to reinforce the work in the working class, in order to recruit new forces in the trade union movement and to establish trade unions in which the class oriented forces will play a leading role.

3 We need to contribute with all our forces to the strengthening and broadening of the peace, anti-imperialist movement; to repulse NATO plans through the reconstruction of the Balkan Anti-NATO Center, against the imperialist military presence in the Balkans, the foreign bases and troops, the participation of military forces from Balkan countries in NATO and EU missions in other countries such as Afghanistan, Iraq, the Persian Gulf and elsewhere.

4 We must demand the return of troops from the Balkan countries that are currently abroad and to end the engagement of our countries in new imperialist wars.

5 We must express our solidarity with the people of Cuba and to strengthen our struggle for the liberation of the 5 Cuban patriots from the US prisons.


The workers and the other popular strata in the Balkan countries, 20 years after the overthrow of the popular regimes, have nothing to expect from the imperialist organisations, the EU and the NATO, or from the bourgeois governments of right wing and social-democratic forces that have been tested in practice.

The only hope is the joint anti-imperialist and class struggle with the communists in the frontline.

December 19, 2009


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