The victory of Syriza and of its leader Alexis Tsipras has an important significance well beyond Greece and the EU legacy. For the first time in decades a real left-wing party is in government, signaling a change in European politics that is going to have repercussions in other EU member states.
The reasons of its growth and rise to power have been linked to the disastrous austerity policies applied to the Greece from Bruxelles and accepted by the previous government. These policies, presented as the only solution to the economic crisis generated by the same capitalistic market, have resulted in the general hardship for the majority of people. “Austerity for most but privileges for few” is the bottom line of this policy: high unemployment, cut in all social services, cuts in public services have not seen a parallel in cutting banking bonuses, financial depredation of people rushing for loans, greedy employers “inventing” so called new contracts as the zero hours.
Although it is true that every country is responsible for its mismanagement and debt, it is also true that if sacrifices are to be made, then they should be proportionally divided, taking into account the real financial impact. The capitalist market that survives in its upper cycle by accepting and granting social services to the state, when it is at its bottom cycle has nothing better that to advance the cut of everything not profitable and the exploitation of the multitude to maintain stability at the top. Austerity, backed as sacred commandment by ECB and IMF, is only a protective policy to negate the existence of alternatives to a system not new to failings and convince the population to pay.
Syriza four years ago was subjected to the political slander of all major TV channels in EU, paving the specter of EU exit, socialist dictatorship and economic collapse, and although Greeks, exactly as today, were dissatisfied with the ruling parties, they believed to those lies and chose the “safe way” or as the BBC called it the “step in the known”. The result: four years of financial achievements for ECB and IMF saying that Greek finances are looking better, but at what price? Nearly half of Greek youths are unemployed, a broken generation of 30-40 years old that in some cases have not had a regular contract yet, not paid into their pensions pots and saw every social safeguard disappear. The successes of the bailout are made on the back of the people’s life, saving money by cutting everything considered irrelevant.
Nevertheless, Syriza’s victory is not only for people tired of being pushed, made pay for every mistake, it is also a victory for those advocating for years that an alternative to the current market policies and the acceptance of political neo-capitalistic-centrism actually exist. Syriza is not the first signal of this exploration; few months ago Die Linke in Germany achieved widespread notoriety as Bodo Ramelow become prime minister in Thuringia leading a coalition called “Red-Red-Green” – Die Linke with the Social Democrats (SPD) and the Green Party. In Spain we are assisting to the rising of Podemos a coalition of left wing forces that developed from the indignados protest movement, deciding to challenge politically the Spanish political establishment. These examples signal the defeat of the mainstream so called “socialist parties” of Europe that, except the name, have nothing or very little in common with that ideas and share with their centre right opponents a strong attachment to power and defence of the status quo whatever the price. The likes of Labour, French Socialists, and Democrats in Italy produced rather unpopular figures seen as the “carers” of this grinding machine that is today the financial-political class ruling basically all EU countries.
Syriza victory is giving Europe a chance to develop an alternative, that in itself is not new and others have already adopted with courage and dedication, achieving spectacular results and in a democratic way. Latin America turn to the left, derided and boycotted by the socialists of Europe as anti-historic to the necessary step for achieving capitalism growth, has instead generated a model where social policies are back on the agenda. Brazil, Uruguay, Chile, Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador made their own revolution through the ballot long before Europe and today are still developing that system assisting to an economic growth superior of EU altogether.
Syriza victory is a victory of democracy, freedom of choice despite the attempts once again to scare people with the fairy tale of “the leap into the unknown”. A victory and a defeat for the hypocrites of our democracies, where everything that is seen as an obstacle to this system is tagged as dangerous and counterproductive. Syriza received comments ranging from derision to open accusation of leading Greece to disaster, but who created this situation in all Europe five years ago?
Nevertheless, it is not going to be easy for Syriza: they fell short of majority in parliament, forced into coalition with far-right Independent Greeks. It is basically the only open anti-austerity government in Europe, although others may share in secret the same opinions but their hypocrisy prevents them to come out in the open. Financial blackmailing, such the cut of aid, is going to be used to bring back Greece “to order”, and Syriza will have to resist these attacks alone for some time before others may join the struggle.
Syriza victory is the first step to rebuild Europe on a democratic basis, where people can take part and be put at the core of the EU policies, not only common market, ECB and financial planning. We are Europeans and we share common values that are those of freedom, democracy, tolerance and social progress, far away from the EU current ideology based on money, market and economic depredation.
Syriza is an anti-EU party but it is not anti-European, it is the current political class and their financial protectors that they want to send home and replace them with the people of Europe.