PAME wishes to the workers of our country, Greeks and migrants, but also to the thousands of Greek migrants living abroad, happy and militant in 2020 with health, and strength in the struggles to come.
We welcome the workers of all sectors and workplaces who have given big struggles and continue to fight for Collective Contracts and Salary Increases, in defense of trade union rights and freedoms. All those who mobilized against the layoffs and the attack on the employers, against auctions and seizures of people’s homes.
We send our solidarity to the workers of other countries, to the members and friends of the World Federation of Trade Unions who are on the paths of struggle. From Santiago of Chile in the other side of the world to our neighboring Istanbul, Turkey. >From India to France and everywhere on the planet as workers raise their voices against misery and exploitation. Our thoughts are always with the peoples of Palestine, Syria, etc. suffering daily from imperialist crimes, and we promise to be on their side.
The coming year marks the end of the 20th anniversary since the foundation of PAME. 20 years of struggles, strikes and mobilizations that have left a huge legacy in the labor movement of our country, but also internationally. The new decade finds us more experienced, more mature, but also with increased tasks and duties to move forward with the task of reconstructing the labor movement. To strengthen workers’ struggles, to win!
2019 will not be remembered by workers for the change of government in Greece. As the ND’s return to government, it has escalated the anti-workers policy that was also promoted by SYRIZA, targeting workers’ social security rights. They use the attack unleashed by SYRIZA against the trade unions to bring back police presence inside the unions and ban protests. ND, as a traditional bourgeoisie party uses the disappointment created by SYRIZA to ban strikes and demonstrations. Using Law and Order Doctrine, rubber bullets, police brutality. “Growth” for workers means low salaries and unemployment.
ND’s nationalism goes hand in hand with the aggressiveness of Turkey’s bourgeoisie, with the latest developments demanding high alert by the people, so as not to become victim of the imperialist competitions. Regardless of the label and the color, all Greek governments to date have enormous responsibility for their continued involvement and support in US-NATO-EU imperialist plans and the crimes that continue to be committed in our neighborhood. In particular, the Agreement for USA military bases in Greece, prepared by SYRIZA and implemented by ND, turns our country into a huge US aircraft carrier. The territory of Greece becomes, on the one hand a target, and on the other a machine of war and death for the peoples of our neighborhood.
The escalation of the refugee situation is a consequence of these policies. That is why we must not allow the targeting of the victims, the refugees and immigrants. But we must condemn the policies that create it, as well as the EU Agreements and Regulations that turn Greece into a storehouse of souls, a prison for tens of thousands of uprooted. It is the duty of the class unions to play a leading role in the common struggle of Greeks and immigrants, in the development of solidarity.
In 2020, history is waiting to record the outcome of the Golden Dawn trial after years of delays, obstacles and deliberations by governments so far. The provocative position of the Prosecutor, where she has become an advocate of the fascists, demonstrates her intention to act as a launderer of Nazi crimes and to open the way for the ultimate acquittal of fascist killers. Fascism is a weapon of the system and it has often been proven in the trial how high it enjoys support and coverage. The working class movement will be constantly vigilant and will take on new initiatives to isolate and expose the criminal, racist role of the Nazis. To punish and convict them for their crimes and the system that generates and protects them.
By the end of 2019, the struggle of the workers, the living, trade unions against the group called the “trade union mafia” will take a special place. Against the GSEE leadership team, Panagopoulos-Kioutsoukis-Vassilopoulos and the employer-unionist Karageorgopoulos, cadres of ETUC in Greece. Against those who are the right hand of governments and employers within the unions. That power of degeneration and the undermining of the struggles of the workers that has sat for so many years in the backbone of our country’s working class selling off our wages and rights in exchange for staying in their chairs. To impose themselves in their chairs they even used thugs, criminals, or riot police and secret police agents. All these, received a militant response by the real, the alive, militant unions of Greece. Workers and unionists, even not in the ranks of PAME, said “no more” and demanded Unions of Workers for the workers, not for the employers. This development is an important step so as to respond to the antiworkers policy of the employers and the Government.
2020 will find us ready to give a massive strike response to government-employer plans to crack down on Social Security and Insurance. By mobilizing and fighting we will respond to their plans to ban demonstrations. Their plans will remain on paper. Our movement has experience. Experience that came through the fire and iron of class struggle, through struggles and persecutions, against illusions and fruitless hopes. Always, with stability and consistency, with a class orientation, to defend the interests and the rights of the working class.
The new decade puts us ahead of new, increased tasks. There is a growing need to match the struggle, the workers’ response, to the employers’ attack. The steps that have been taken, important steps in difficult times, give us strength and hope for continuity. Our compass is our basic principles, solidarity, class struggle, internationalism. Our weapon is the belief in the right and power of the working class. The class that produces wealth, which creates and pushes forward the evolution of society. Our tool is organization and collective, mass action. Live, militant unions. Cores of Resistance in every workplace.
With optimism, determination and militancy. Consistently, steadily, we will be at the forefront of the struggle again. On the streets and in factories, in businesses, in ports and in shopping malls, in every workplace, PAME will do its utmost to meet the modern needs of the people, to rebuild the workers’-union movement. To strengthen the struggle as a whole against the rotten system of exploitation, for a society without exploitation.
Hope exists in the struggles of the peoples!
Happy and Militant 2020