Päivittäinen raportointi Kreikasta: Day 17 of the revolt in Greece

While the protest marches in working class –popular neighborhoods, attacks on police stations, occupations of schools and faculties but also of cultural centers and radio stations continue, the capitalist State does not stop its repression using  the political support not only of the government but also of PASOK and particularly of the Stalinist “Communist” Party-KKE against the so-called “hooligans”.

So far 500 are brought in custody and 300 are under arrest. A few days ago 40 young schoolchildren about 15 years old, in Larissa, Central Greece were condemned by the court to prison under the “antiterrorist” law! Today another 40 young people, including a soldier in service, were brought to the Central Tribunals in Athens to be interrogated and charged. Despite the rain- a real flood- hundreds of protesters with banners stood in front of the Tribunals in defense of the persecuted.

A democratic right won by struggle and blood is the right of asylum in the space of the Universities- a right broken, of course by the military junta in 1973 when the dictatorship of the colonels sent the tanks inside the Polytechnic University of Athens to strangle the uprising of the students killing hundreds of them. Today, the bourgeois democratic State threatens the asylum right and prepares to invade again the Polytechnic University under the order of the Attorney General. The Polytechnic as well as the Economic University and the Law Faculty of the University of Athens are not only occupied but also independent centers of action. The Government and the State accuse us to be “centers of sedition”. The Polytechnic is called officially by the government “a base of arsonists and criminals” (!!) The Principle and the Dean of the Polytechnic University resist so far the pressures but danger is high for a police invasion in a place considered as a holy site for all the Greek people after the martyrdom of the youth in 1973.

The 2008 revolt preserves and at the same time supersedes the 1973 uprising. It is not solely a youth revolt: the youth, particularly the schoolchildren are in the forefront of a popular revolt. Without a mass popular support and participation it could not last 17 days now.

An example from the non-stop war against the ridiculous Christmas tree that the right wing Mayor of Athens Nikitas Kaklamanis has installed in Syntagma Square in front of the parliament,  demonstrates it. A group of artists- very active in many occasions in the events- went to the Central Market of Athens asking the small shopkeepers, particularly the butchers, to give them rotten meat and vegetables to throw out against the dozens of riot police guarding the Tree of Syntagma Square. They got an enthusiastic response by these shopkeepers and many kilos of rotten meat, including some heads of pigs (pig is  the nickname for policeman). Later on, an avalanche of rotten meat, including the heads of pigs became projectiles against the official State guard of the Mayor’s Christmas tree and against the tree itself. The poor dogs abandoned in the streets and freely moving around Syntagma Square were the happiest of all, particularly with the pig meat! (NB: in all clashes with the riot police these proletarian dogs take without any exception the side of the demonstrators against the police).

During all these days, apart from the marches and assembly meetings, all kinds of political discussions among different groups of people are organized. Today our organization, EEK (Workers Revolutionary Party) held a successful meeting in the Law Faculty to draw the first political-theoretical conclusions from the struggle so far and to discuss some controversial political issues emerging between different tendencies within the movement. A similar meeting was held in the same place by OEN (Organization of Revolutionary Youth-Trotskyists) Sunday evening. Similar meetings are held by other left organizations and radical collectives as well.

Tomorrow is an important day before Christmas: a mass demonstration of youth and workers is planned at noon in front of the Athens University to march throughout the Greek capital. After the march general assemblies will be held in the occupied faculties to decide the plan of action during the Christmas –New Year period as well as a meeting of a number of class struggle trade unions to discuss how to mobilize the trade union movement in strike action.

Hasta la victoria siempre!

December 22, 2008
_____Savas Michael


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