Solidarity statement of the International League of Peoples´ Struggle for the 14 November Day of Action of the proletariat and people of Europe
By Prof. JOSE MARIA SISON
Chairperson, International Coordinating Committee
International League of Peoples’ Struggle
The International League of Peoples’ Struggle (ILPS) conveys militant greetings of solidarity with the proletariat and people of Europe who are holding a continent-wide coordinated multinational mega-strike, demonstrations and other forms of mass protest on the 14th of November. We join them in saying “No!” to the austerity measures being imposed by the imperialists through the troika of the European Commission, European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund.
We are confident that the mass mobilization will be successful and will bring the struggle against the austerity measures to a new and higher level. A broad range of Europe’s biggest trade unions have agreed to launch marches and demonstrations, uniting progressive activist movements and parties opposing the mostly Center-Right governments and the financial oligarchy. Even the usually quiescent European Trade Union Confederation is participating in the mass protest.
But more progressive and militant forces of the proletariat, the youth, women and other sectors of the people are participating. They are the most determined to block the austerity measures, such as the drastic cuts in wages, pensions, social benefits and public sector employment which are accompanied by tax hikes and anti-labor regulations. They condemn the imperialist system that is responsible for such measures meant to pass the burden of the economic and financial crisis to the proletariat and people of Europe.
The public deficits and debts are the apparent cause of the austerity measures. They afflict all the member-states of the European Union, including Germany, France, Italy and the UK. But they weigh heaviest on such countries as Greece, Spain, Portugal and Italy whose exports are lagging in an already depressed world market. The euro is at grave risk as Italy is hit hard by the debt crisis and the $1 trillion rescue fund called the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) is proving to be inadequate for defending the euro.
The public debt crisis has arisen from overpriced contracts between the state and the monopolies, the tax cuts, the bailouts and other benefits that have been provided to the monopoly bourgeoisie as a class and to their corporations and banks. The member-states of the EU have violated their own rule of limiting budget deficits to 3% of GDP and government debt to 60%. The austerity measures are meant to replenish the state coffers and enable the state to make interest payments on accumulated debt and get new loans at the further expense of the people.
Such measures will not lead to economic recovery but will only worsen the depressed economic conditions. The high rate of unemployment continues to rise, with 25 million out of work and nearly 25 per cent of the youth jobless (nearly 50 per cent in Greece and Spain). The prices of basic goods and services are also rising. The spread of poverty and hunger has become conspicuous in city streets of southern countries of Europe. The pressing down of wages and the further cutbacks on social spending continue even after decades of dismantling the so-called European social model within the framework of the neoliberal economic policy.
In more than three decades, the neoliberal economic policy has pressed down wages, cut back on social services and provided the monopoly bourgeoisie all the opportunities to accumulate capital and make profits through liberalization of investment and trade, privatization of public assets , deregulation of social, economic and environmental restrictions and denationalization of the less developed national economies under the signboard of free trade.
The overaccumulation of capital in the hands of the monopoly bourgeoisie has accelerated as never before in the history of capitalism. And the crisis of overproduction has recurred at a rapid rate with ever more destructive results. The crisis cannot be solved and can only be protracted through further public debt and deficits. It can only worsen, because of the very character of monopoly capitalism and because of the persistent adherence of the monopoly bourgeoisie and the imperialist states to the neoliberal economic policy.
We therefore urge the proletariat and people of Europe to view the austerity measures in the wider historical context of the crisis of the world capitalist system. We call on them to intensify protests against austerity measures, the neoliberal economic policy and the entire capitalist system. They must seize the mass protests as great opportunities to arouse, organize and mobilize themselves for the struggle against imperialism and for socialism.
We call on them to condemn war production and the wars of aggression being carried out by the US and NATO. They must frustrate the rise of fascism and such related reactionary currents as chauvinism, racism, war hysteria, religious bigotry and hatred against migrant workers. The drum beat for imperialist war by the monopoly bourgeoisie and finance oligarchy is being used to suppress democracy and to regiment the people.
We call on the proletariat and people of Europe to strengthen their democratic movements against imperialism, aim for socialism and support the progressive and revolutionary mass movements of the people in other continents, especially the underdeveloped countries that are fighting for national and social liberation against imperialism and reaction.
The monopoly bourgeoisie and financial oligarchy are escalating oppression and exploitation. They make the world bleak and harsh with crisis, state terrorism and wars of aggression. The proletariat and people of the world must unite in order to fight and defeat imperialism and reaction as the common enemy and to build a fundamentally new and better world of greater freedom, democracy, social justice, all-round development and peace.