Contribution of the Communist Youth of Greece (KNE) in the 15th Meeting of European Communist Youth Organisations
On behalf of the CC of KNE, we would like to thank the Communist Youth of Austria for hosting the 15th Meeting of European Communist Youth Organisations (MECYO), for the first time in Austria, as well as its overall contribution to our common cause.
We thank the Communist Youth Organisations of Europe for stably supporting the fight that the KKE and KNE are giving in Greece against the anti-people’s policy of the social-democratic government of SYRIZA, against the bourgeois class and the imperialist associations.
We warmly and comradely greet all our comrades-delegates of the Communist Youth Organisations of Europe and we wish you every success in the action of your Organisations.
The European meetings of the CYOs are of great importance, they can contribute to the exchange of experience from the intervention of our Organisations, and to the growth of our joint struggle, in order to reinforce the fight in our countries against the capital and the capitalist exploitation, the EU, the parties of the capital and their governments.
The truth is that we, the Communist Youth Organisations in Europe have used our best efforts in the last years for the defending of the rights of the young people and we have given important fights against the capitalist system by reinforcing the fight that the Communist and Workers’ Parties are giving, concentrating a rich experience. Without undermining our subjective weaknesses, the great demands (ideological-political-organisational) that the fight has, we assess that this militant concentrated experience is a weapon for the further on reinforcement of the anti-capitalist fight and the growth and strengthening of our bonds with thousands of young men and women, employed and unemployed people, students and school students
The life of the young people in Greece
The measures of the recent years that have been taken by the anti-peoples’ government of the social-democratic party of SYRIZA, have left their indelible mark on the lives and future of the young people in our country, that today are getting educated, studying, working or seeking employment. In education, changes are being made in its content, enhancing the rotten values and ideals of the system of exploitation, along with the necessary adjustments for capitalist economy that ultimately contribute in the enhancement of the flexibility of the scientific personnel and workforce that the capitalist market needs. The needs of the youth for culture, sports, recreation and vacation are being crushed by their commercialization
The communists of Greece are at the forefront of the struggle for the educational and labour rights of the youth that comes from the working class and the popular strata. They fight so that the struggle of the youth against the anti-people’s attack, which today is greatly lagging, will strengthen and acquire mass characteristics. At the same time, they enlighten the youth through multifaceted action for the maturity of the material preconditions but also of the impasses of the capitalist way of production, that confirm the timeliness and the necessity of socialism.
We live amidst developments that have the mark of the EU and NATO. The danger of an
outbreak of a generalised war in the region is real
During the recent years, great realignments in the correlation amongst capitalist states are under way. The sharpening of their in-between competitions takes the form of a trade war, reinforcement of protectionism. In the EU, Euroscepticism has been reinforced, which is also expressed through the bourgeois political system being more reactionary, throughout its spectrum, with the reinforcement of far-right and fascist forces.
The military conflict is also increased, mainly between the forces of NATO against Russia, China and Iran, as well as contradictions among state-members of NATO. The EU intensifies the war preparations with PESCO, the European Defence Fund, the EuroArmy, in order to play a more active role in the imperialist invasions alongside NATO. Imperialist war is raging in various regions, such as Syria, Iraq, Libya, Ukraine, Palestine, Yemen and Afghanistan. War forces gather in the South China Sea.
There is a new sharpening in our region, in the frameworks of the competitions of the bourgeois classes of Greece and Turkey and the provocation of the Turkish ruling class to proceed in drillings in maritime zones that do not belong to its jurisdiction based on the international Law. The KKE stably highlights the massive dangers against the peoples and confronts with the tactic of complacency which is systematically cultivated by the government of SYRIZA as well as the other parties, projecting the so-called assistance of the “allies”, NATO and the EU. The peace and prosperity of the peoples, as well as the protection of the sovereign rights of our country, cannot be achieved in the framework of intense energy and geostrategic antagonisms, the imperialist organisations, as well as the plans of the USA – NATO – EU, in which the government plays the role of the flag-bearer.
We denounce the “left” government of SYRIZA that has transformed Greece into an endless military camp of the USA and NATO. We give the fight in order to stop every involvement of our country in the imperialist war plans and preparations. So that NATO leaves the Aegean Sea, so that the USA-NATO bases close down. We come into conflict with this policy, which in the name of the geostrategic enhancement of the country, leads the people in great adventures. The young people should not compromise with the support of aggressive actions and wars in the name of attracting investments.
In the frontline to defend the life and future of our people and our country, we pave the way so that the working class and its children will not be trapped in the aims of the exploiters, but to constantly put their own class interests and needs in the centre of their struggle. Not to trust the exploiters, their parties and governments, those responsible and guilty of the war slaughter, because the only motherland that they worship and protect is the one of untold profits.
The NO of the communists to imperialist war is part of the struggle against its causes, an outright condemnation of capitalism, which bears it. The 20th century with two imperialist world wars and hundreds of local ones, as well as the first decades of the 21st century provide plenty of evidence. The NO of the communists to imperialist war is a NO to the economic, the internal and foreign policy of every bourgeois government and of the imperialist alliances in conditions of “imperialist peace”, the continuation of which is the imperialist war
The truly contemporary and new today is the struggle for the contemporary needs of the youth, the struggle for socialism that emerges more timely and necessary than ever
The true answer to the concerns of every young person lies in their participation in the struggle against the capitalist brutality, for socialism-communism. KNE develops a combative and mass activity in terms of ideological-political-educational counterattack. It is the only living force in the youth of Greece which fights in an organised and combative manner against the deterioration of its life, which can stand against the plans that the current system has set out for the youth, which can inspire and rally broader youthful forces to pave the way for the revolutionary overthrow.
Our Organisation addresses with class criteria the young men and women who have a different level of political consciousness, being aware of the existing negative correlation of forces and the conditions that objectively form the thought and stance of the youth today. The vast majority of the youth belongs to the working class and the popular strata the problems it faces can form the prerequisites in order to understand and to raise concerns. We are concerned about how we will improve our militant-ideological-political bonds and our communication with the youth in today’s conditions, how we will not leave anyone to the “claws” of the system, how we will acquire joint action with new forces, how we will expand the circle of influence of KNE around every base organisation, how a significant part of young people in every area is steeled and acts in a vanguard manner.
We confront the intervention of the opponent who uses all means and channels, while taking into consideration the special characteristics, the situation, the limited social and political experience, the moods of the new generation. We strengthen our confrontation against the factors and ideas that set obstacles to the radicalisation of the consciousness of the young people.
• The system presents as “conflicts” what is convenient for it in order to “undermine” the real conflict that is taking place. Against the perception of the “anachronistic” class revolutionary violence, of the one of condemning “violence wherever it comes from”, we broadly project the genuine “anti-systemic” action in the fight for every issue, for the regroupment of the labour movement, the promotion of social alliance, in order for the struggle of the young people to strengthen, reaching the point of an overall conflict with the class enemy, the struggle for the overthrow of capitalism.
• Our response to the so-called “realism” of submission must be one of overthrow. KNE forces are the only ones that can widely promote the realism of action squashing the rationale of “lesser evil” and minimum expectations.
• Those who deprive the young generation of the freedom to live decently and evolve are those trying to persuade them that in capitalism “everyone is free to do whatever they want” as long as they do not question the capitalist ownership and power. However, freedom for the people will come with socialism, the passage to the liberation of the whole society from capitalist servitude. KNE, with special editions and events, responds to the anti-communist propaganda about the 20th century socialism, enlightens the youth regarding the conquests in the USSR and other socialist countries but also regarding the causes of their overthrow and the scientific laws of the socialist revolution and construction.
• By exalting the individual path, the system conceals the real dividing line in society. In conditions of high unemployment rate and flexible forms and relations of employment, the only way-out presented is personal antagonism, the chase of personal “opportunity”. KNE forces seek to oppose the bourgeois and opportunist forces’ plans that try to make the young people form a negative stance towards class organisation and struggle, collective struggle, which are the only way-out so the young generation can conquer its contemporary rights both on a collective and an individual level.
Through our entire intervention we are trying to reveal:
• The true face of bourgeois democracy as a form of dictatorship of capital, the reasons why bourgeois governments and the bourgeois parliament will never be able to express the interests of the people and its children, because they are a “temple” of democracy for the few, having capitalist profit as a “shrine” and capitalist exploitation as a “religion”.
• The role of the bourgeois justice, which works under the orders of the ruling class and continuously favours the bosses. The strengthening of the legislative arsenal against the enemy-people, such as terrorist laws, the EU legislation against “radicalisation”, attacking the right to strike etc
• We strengthen the struggle against fascism and the system that bears it. The members and friends of KNE have put their own “stamp” on the struggle against the fascists and the system that bears them, on their isolation everywhere, on exposing their dirty systemic role to broader young masses. Our consistent, multifaceted intervention in terms of collective action can “freeze them out” and limit significantly the influence of fascist-nationalist ideas and action. The struggle against fascism cannot be effective without targeting the “matrix” of the Nazi monster, the monopolies, capitalism itself. The seemingly opposite positions of nationalism on the one hand, which sow openly irredentist stances and hatred towards the other peoples, and cosmopolitanism on the other, which through SYRIZA, its main mouthpiece, propagates that peace, friendship and cooperation of the peoples pass through the “one-way street” of the imperialist alliances, i.e. NATO, the EU, are in fact complementary and intertwined. They constitute the two cloaks that the bourgeois ideology wears, in order to engage the people and youth in the main objective of the bourgeois class, its geostrategic enhancement in the framework of broader imperialist plans.
KNE has played a decisive role in the expression of hints of militant action in youth places during a period in which the government and the other forces of the system are doing everything in their power in order to establish “dead silence”. We do not consider as a given fact the stagnancy which seems to prevail in the movement today. We do not underestimate the processes taking place today in popular and youthful consciousnesses, the most of which are silent, underground and they are notexpressed in decisive organisation, personal and mass participation in the struggles of the movement. The specific needs of the youth are the basis for the development of militant processes that under certain conditions can lead to sudden outbursts.
We work on building broad militant bonds within the sectors and work places that employ thousands of young workers
The effort to develop struggles and strengthen the mass characteristics of the trade-unions has offered a
valuable experience for the development and building of more KNE organisations in sectors – especially the ones in telecommunications, trade-services, food industry-tourism, healthcare, transportation etc. – that employ thousands of young workers and for which KNE has a particular responsibility.
We are trying so KNE members, who have been elected in the Administrative Board of their trade-unions, in branches and struggle committees within the work places, can contribute with their vanguard action, can achieve credibility and gain in stature, can renew and reinforce the bonds between the Party and KNE and the young workers.
The government and employer-led trade-unionism has formed to the youth a negative stance towards trade-unionist action and unions. Their refusal to accept as members of the trade unions workers with different labour relations, the majority being young people doing their apprenticeship, is typical. We struggle against fragmentation (“old” – “new”, with “fixed-term” or “indefinite duration” labour contracts or “permanent workers” ,“contractors”, “agency workers”, “vocational training workers”, “apprenticeship” etc.) and the bourgeois intervention that tries to turn one section against the others. We
give our hand to more young people to take responsibilities in the workers’ trade unions, with trust and support.
The development of a militant stance throughout the country regarding issues of unpaid work, lay-offs, occupational accidents, working conditions, against exhausting working hours and employers’ terrorism have confirmed in practice to the young people the need of organisation and collective demands, solidarity in the workplace.
Positive experience from the decisive intervention of KNE within school students
The improvement of KNE’s intervention in schools has also been expressed in the School Student Festivals, which constitute a milestone in our action in the school students, a connection and a peak of all efforts of discussion, organisation and confrontation on a city and neighborhood level.
• On better terms we study and implement a more targeted plan of building and growth in schools taking into account more issues that influence, preoccupy and raise concerns.
• KNE establishes itself in the school-student movement and in taking initiatives in relation with other political forces.
• We have taken steps forward in the broader political discussion of our proposal for the school of the contemporary needs and possibilities.
Steps were made in reviving the school student communities, in the development of struggles with multifaceted actions of demand and of school student creation under the slogan “A school that educates us and does not exhaust us”, as opposed to today’s situation and the new restructurings. Through the organisation of struggle for the contemporary rights of school students and the struggle of enlightenment we managed to damage the government’s “pro-student profile” to a great section of students.
Our forces extended the strife on many more issues that concern the school students along with those of education, regarding serious developments of this period, such as the consequences of the capitalist crisis on the life of the school students, the attempt to criminalise the school student struggles, war, the character and the role of NATO and the EU, the need to isolate the fascists, activities of solidarity with the refugee children, the Palestinian people, cultural- sports activities etc. The above issues were based on existing concerns of the school students and gave a “boost” to the overall action at schools, they contributed so more school students would be involved in action.
In the past years, with the active participation of school students-members of KNE, Coordination Committees of school students have been formed responding to the need to organise and coordinate the school student struggles. The creation of 14 coordination committees throughout Greece went a step further with the nationwide meeting that took place after many years in 2017.
We have taken steps forward in the regroupment of the university and technological educational institute student movement
The university and technological educational institute student movement is still in deep crisis and retreat. This has been expressed in degeneration phenomena and abstention (of 50%) from collective procedures, such as the student elections. The above are due to and have an expression in the ongoing negative correlation of forces.
At the same time, however, important processes are taking place under our decisive intervention. This is expressed in the strengthening of the Students’ Struggle Front (MAS), with which now rally 44 student unions, while only 17 had contributed to its foundation in 2009, and in the actions taken by the student unions where the Panspoudastiki KS (PKS), KNE’s list, is the first-voted force.
PKS is the second force and stably concentrates over the last years over 20% of the votes in the student elections, while at the majority of the unions where Panspoudastiki is the first force, through the militant action that they develop, some steps are made in the participation and organisation of the students, there is ground for them to be strengthened considerably. At some of them, their action stands out due to our work, with their function, the participation of students in the general assemblies, the assurance of the communication of the students via newspapers, websites, the organisation of events and actions on issues concerning the content of the studies, science, the general developments, their contact and joint action with their sectoral trade union. The above have a special importance if we think about the
effort of further repressing the student movement, which is spearheaded by the attack against the student asylum.
As a result of our efforts, the recognition of MAS by broader parts of students as the most alive, militant part of the student movement is expressed. A vanguard of unions is expressed, that is at the forefront of the front against the anti-people policy of governments-EU, against the imperialist plans and NATO, of the organisation, participation and action on all issues that concern the students, the solidarity with the refugees and the Palestinian people, the front against fascism, the coordination and joint action of student unions and trade unions.
We prioritise the matching of every school with the respective sector. The information, explanation and exposure of what prevails after the degree prepare the students, so that with their head high they will be able to confront the situation that predominates after the degree. We are concerned about what and how the students are taught, the orientation and the character of research, which today are subjugated to the monopolies and come in conflict with man and his needs. We form a front against cooperation of institutes and companies that constitute a mean of ideological manipulation of the students, a mean of consensus to the cut of educational and labour rights. The front that we have formed against the imperialist organisations of NATO-EU and their relation to the institutes has left an imprint and can be upgraded confronting the tolerance that is cultivated by the bourgeois forces.
KNE and the KKE fight in a series of electoral battles with principled positions, which are imprinted on the Programme of the KKE
KNE has given multiple electoral battles by the side of the KKE for the local and regional governments and the European parliament. In a week, the national elections that were announced after the heavy defeat of the social-democratic SYRIZA from the conservative ND in all ballot boxes that preceded, are taking place. We consider that in these conditions, the vote to the KKE in the European elections (a little over 300.000):
• It expressed a trend of emancipation from the dividing lines that the bipolar schema sets, from the false expectations regarding the so-called “post-memorandum” era and the “just” character of any anemic capitalist recovery.
• It expressed, to a certain extent, an approval of the fundamental position of the KKE that there cannot be a pro-people governmental management within the walls of the rotten exploitative system and the EU, a position which we consistently highlight in our political discussion with the people.
Through a wide political opening, especially in the youth of the working class and the allied popular strata, we aim at the development of the quality, as well as the expansion, of the political bonds especially with the workers who positively approach the KKE, whether they chose to vote it in one of the ballot boxes of these elections, or not, and of course at the recruitment in KNE of the most vanguard ones.
In view of the national elections, we set the real dilemma for the people, i.e. if the day after the elections the KKE is going to be stronger, the force that fights for the rights, inside and outside of the parliament, which will pave the way of the radical overthrow.
With our History as a guide, we can make it
We have the weapons, the tenacity to make it. We can make a valuable guide out of the great legacy of the History of the International Communist Movement, to draw experience and conclusions, to take it further – like the ones before us did – to justify it to the fullest.This year, we honour the anniversary of the completion of 100 years since the founding of the Communist International (CI) (on March 1919), as well as the founding of the Young Communist International a few months later. The legacy of the CI, the study of its experience, is valuable today for the regroupment of the International Communist Movement, for the formation of a unified revolutionary strategy against the capitalist power.
We also honour the legacy of the great revolutionaries of our movement, such as the one of the German communists Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg who were murdered 100 years ago (on January 1919).
We do not forget that they were murdered by sections of Freikorps (Free Corps) and that the leadership of the Social-democratic Party of Germany and personally the chancellor Friedrich Ebert and minister of Defence, Gustav Noske, who led the drowning of the revolution.
And truly the words of Luxemburg- the ones we put in the title of this year’s Meeting- just before she was murdered, continue to show the way:
“The masses are the crucial factor. They are the rock on which the ultimate victory of the revolution will be built. The masses were up to the challenge, and out of this “defeat” they have forged a link in the chain of historic defeats, which is the pride and strength of international socialism. That is why future victories will spring from this “defeat.”
“Order prevails in Berlin!” You foolish lackeys! Your “order” is built on sand. Tomorrow the revolution will rise up again, clashing its weapons, and to your horror it will proclaim with trumpets blazing:
I WAS, I AM, I SHALL BE!” Long live the joint struggle of the Communist Youth Organisations of Europe!
Socialism is the future!