Syriza’s gambit comes unstuck– what next?

Syriza’s gambit comes unstuck– what next?

Yanis Varoufakis, the Greek government’s finance minister, and self-defined ‘libertarian Marxist’, is an expert in game theory in his academic career. That might have been expected to give him something of an advantage in the game of chicken that unfolded over four tense weeks in the immediate aftermath of the election of a government majority-led by the ‘radical left’ party Syriza on 25 January.

The problem for the new Greek government was it was a game of chicken in which only the Greek car was heading for the cliff. The other eighteen eurozone finance ministers could safely sit and watch, engines idling, as Varoufakis aimed his vehicle for the void. If the Greeks wanted to risk default and Grexit that was up to them. Wolfgang Schäuble, the German finance minister and by far the most powerful of his peers, ultimately left Varoufakis with very few options – and none of them palatable. The academic game theorist was out-manoeuvred by the hard-bitten finance minister with the economic fire-power of the rest of the Eurogroup and the European Central Bank behind him.

Syriza’s gambit

Initially, Varoufakis looked to be playing a bold and clever game – with many approving comments on his strikingly personal sartorial taste. It was a gamble but one in which a shrewd player could potentially turn the tables on those who for five years had scooped up all the winnings. The Greek government did not want and would not ask for an extension of the bailout – due to expire on 28 February. The hated memorandum imposed by ‘the troika’ of the European Commission (but more usually the Eurogroup of countries in the eurozone represented by their 19 finance ministers) the ECB and the IMF was over. Troika officials would no longer pour over the details of government spending and tax decisions.

A ‘bridging loan’ to help with bank liquidity and the repayment of €1.4bn to the IMF in March would be nice but, whether or not that was agreed, Greece could survive without any assistance until June (major repayments totalling €7bn or so were due in July and August), giving time for Greece to secure agreement with its creditors to swap its existing debt for less onerous arrangements, and reduce the primary fiscal surplus that it was obliged to target under the terms of the bailout.

Debts held by the eurozone (individual governments and the European Financial Stability Fund) would be replaced with growth-linked bonds which would only require interest to be paid when the Greek economy was performing strongly. Greeks debts with the ECB would be converted into perpetual bonds, the face value of which would never be repaid. The overall effect would be the same as if a proportion of the debt were written off – in other words, a form of ‘haircut’.

The primary fiscal surplus is the difference between government income and government outgoings before taking account of interest and debt repayments. Varoufakis proposed that the targets of 3% in 2015 due to rise to 4.5% in 2016 and 2017 be reduced to between 1 and 1.5%. He, nevertheless, guaranteed that government spending would permanently be held below income – maintaining a formally deflationary position, ie, the government would be taking more money out of the economy than it put back in.

A successful outcome of negotiations would free up resources for Syriza to implement its programme.

Greek leverage during negotiations would consist of an implicit threat. The fact that, if it halted interest and debt payments, the government’s budget would be in surplus meant that ostensibly the government could then continue to pay salaries and fund its programmes without have to resort to the financial markets. Alexis Tsipras, Syriza’s youthful leader and the new Greek premier, and Varoufakis could deny any intention to default but the old adage that when someone owes the bank a massive sum of money it is the bank’s problem would certainly be at the back of everyone’s minds – Greece’s total public debt is whopping €320bn.

However, the impact on the rest of Europe of Greek default in 2015 would be several magnitudes less significant than would have been the case in 2012 – the last time the bailout was for renegotiation and when two elections were held in the space of not much more than a month, transforming Syriza from one amongst a wide spectrum of minor parties represented in parliament to the official opposition.

Then Greek default would have threatened another banking crisis and the collapse of the euro. Since then bailout funds (totalling €226.7bn from the two bailouts Greece has received since May 2010) had been used to buy out Greek debt held by banks and private creditors and transfer it to public authorities (the ECB, eurozone governments, the EFSF, and the IMF). Just 11% of bailout loans had subsidised Greek government spending. In effect, it was not Greece that had been bailed out but those private institutions that had lent to Greece. Apparently, the avoidance of ‘moral hazard’ (the failure to take personal responsibility for bad economic decisions) only applies to governments and citizens, not to corporations and banks.

This meant, we were assured by eurozone authorities, that the consequences of Greek default could be contained. Greece could well be blocked from borrowing for a generation but the euro and the rest of the EU would survive relatively unscathed.

Many commentators took the view that this stance was partly bluff. Once one country is evicted from the eurozone, an international financial hurricane might descend on the other straitened members of the currency union – say, Portugal or Italy.

Whatever might be the case on that score, two developments rapidly left the cards in Varoufakis’ negotiating hand starkly exposed.

The fiscal space that the Greek government had expected to secure was shrinking. In the weeks since an election had been in the offing tax receipts had begun to dry up. Only €3.49bn had come in in January, more than €1bn below the target of €4.54bn. That all important primary fiscal surplus was suddenly a lot smaller. In 2014 it was now expected that the primary fiscal surplus instead of hitting 1.8% would be 1.5%. And on a month-by-month basis must have turned into a deficit.

Moreover, the ability of the government to finance its short-term funding requirements by issuing treasury bills was looking distinctly shaky. The most recent auction had been heavily under-subscribed.

Worst of all, the position of Greece’s banks was deteriorating dangerously. Depositors feared the possibility of the return of the drachma, the inevitable devaluation of which would leave their money worth less. Some no doubt also feared the stronger focus on tax evasion and corruption the new government promised. Transfers of deposits to banks abroad speeded up, flowing out of the country at the rate of €2bn a week since December. By 18 February €20bn had been withdrawn and total deposits left in the country were down to €145bn. In the week before agreement was reached, deposits were being withdrawn at the rate of €1bn a day and funds held by Greece’s banks were at their lowest level since depths of eurozone crisis.

The ECB tightened the screw. On 4 Feb it blocked Greek banks from continuing to use Greek government bonds as collateral. Greek banks could still fund themselves using an ECB facility Emergency Liquidity Assistance but this was set at a limit of €65bn which had almost been reached. The Greek government asked for the limit to be raised by €10bn. On 18 February the ECB relented but raised it by only €3.3bn. Greece was to be kept on the shortest possible leash.

The situation was critical. As February ticked by and the end of current bailout approached with no agreement on what would replace it and Greece’s ability to function alone was cast in doubt, the imposition of capital controls to prevent a bank run was expected as early as 24 February – the day after the orthodox Ash Monday public holiday. Capital controls would entail placing limits on withdrawals from ATMs. Steps to block Greek citizens from accessing their own money would be far from popular.

Varoufakis blinked first and brought his racing car to a juddering halt. On Friday 20 February a formal extension of the bailout for four months was signed. Schäuble didn’t hesitate to declare victory, crowing, “Being in government is a date with reality and reality is often not as nice as a dream”, adding, “The Greeks certainly will have a difficult time explaining the deal to their voters”.

The straitjacket

The joint statement [1] of the eurozone finance ministers that Greece signed up to explicitly extended the bailout (albeit referred to diplomatically as “the current arrangements”) that the government had earlier said was “dead”.

The only significant concession to the Greek government was that they would submit a list of the ‘reforms’ by early the following week that detailed how they proposed meet the bailout’s conditions. This was greater flexibility than had been allowed to previous governments. However, that flexibility was heavily constrained: “The Greek authorities commit to refrain from any rollback of measures and unilateral changes to the policies and structural reforms that would negatively impact fiscal targets, economic recovery or financial stability, as assessed by the institutions.”

‘The institutions’, of course, is a euphemism for the troika, whose supervisory role continued.

On those fiscal targets, the statement announces that “[t]he Greek authorities have also committed to ensure the appropriate primary fiscal surpluses or financing proceeds required to guarantee debt sustainability in line with the November 2012 Eurogroup statement. The institutions will, for the 2015 primary surplus target, take the economic circumstances in 2015 into account.”

So the Greeks might be allowed to operate a lower primary fiscal surplus than the planned 3% but only to the extent that economic conditions were worse than expected and that surplus more difficult to achieve – the surplus would not be lowered to facilitate extra government spending.

Varoufakis’ letter [2] when it was submitted in the early hours of 24 February sought to create as much wriggle room as possible but the extent to which Greek ambitions had been curtailed was evident.

A range of measures, in line with campaign promises to create “a meritocratic state” (and fully approved by the troika), are proposed to tackle Greece’s notoriously high levels of tax evasion and corruption and crack down on the oligarchs – top tycoons in areas such as shipping, oil, construction, property, banking and media controlling key business interests and involved in an opaque nexus of relationships with the state and the mainstream political parties.

Thus the independence of the general secretariat of public revenues (GSPR) is guaranteed – bearing in mind that an earlier head of the organisation, Haris Theoharis, had been forced out of his post in June 2014 when he exhibited excessive scrupulousness. The investigative and prosecution powers of the GSPR are to be strengthened – especially the units dealing with “high wealth and large debtors”.

Transfer pricing by companies is to be challenged, a national plan to be designed to target corruption and fuel and tobacco smuggling. Media companies will have to pay for the broadcast frequencies they use – rather than being granted them gratis as a political favour by the government of the day.

To be honest, even if Varoufakis had won everything he asked for, increasing the government’s tax take would have still been the main avenue to fulfil all of Syriza’s spending commitments. How successful the government can be and over what time scale is an open question.

The number of ministries is to be reduced from sixteen to ten – a Syriza campaign promise and already in hand – the number of special advisors reduced and ministerial perks cut – again, already in hand. Cost saving measures in every ministry will seek to rationalise non-salary and non-pension expenditures which apparently account for what the letter describes as an “astounding” 56% of total public expenditure.

However, Value Added Tax (which of course disproportionately hits the poor) will be “rationalised” and “unreasonable discounts” eliminated. This is code for removing the concessionary VAT charged on the Greek islands of the Aegean.

On pensions, loopholes and incentives will be eliminated that “give rise to an excessive rate of early retirements” in banking and public sectors and the government will work to eliminate “the social and political pressure for early retirement” between the ages of 50 and 65.

A “new smart approach to collective wage bargaining” (whatever that means) will be phased in. The Financial Times of 25 February interpreted this as a “defeat” for Syriza’s ambition to restore collective bargaining rights.

The minimum wage will be raised “over time… in a manner that safeguards competitive and employment prospects”. Any changes in wages are to be “in line with productivity developments and competitiveness”. The post-election promise to immediately raise the minimum wage to €751 is obviously shelved.

In another opaque proposal, the “public sector wage grid” will be reformed, guaranteeing that the public sector’s wage bill will not increase. Apparently, the aim is to rebalance wages so that the top is trimmed but those at the bottom receive more.

In the biggest climb down of all, the government commits not to roll back privatisations that have been completed and to continue with privatisations that have been launched. Those privatisations in the pipeline will be reviewed “with a view to improving the terms so as to maximise the state’s long-term benefits, generate revenues, [and] enhance competition”.

Nevertheless, some elements of Syriza’s programme designed to address the “humanitarian crisis” survive: “needs arising from the recent rise in absolute poverty (inadequate access to nourishment, shelter, health services and basic energy provision)” are to be met “by means of highly targeted non-pecuniary measure (eg, food stamps).”

While promising to “control” health expenditures, there is to be “universal access for all” – in a society where 33% are without national health insurance.

The letter proposes to decriminalise lower income debtors with small liabilities and proposes to “avoid auctions of the main residence of households below a certain income threshold” – in Syriza’s election programme that threshold is set at €300,000.

Tsipras in a televised address to his cabinet on 27 February said that the first bill to be placed before the Greek parliament would tackle the humanitarian crisis, containing measures to supply free electricity to poor families, and provide housing for 30,000 people plus debt relief for some individuals and companies.

Tough negotiations between Greece and the rest of the Eurogroup are far from over. Varoufakis’ list was accepted on the day of its submission by the other finance ministers only as a “valid starting point”. The Bundestag duly approved the last minute agreement on 27 February on this basis.

Discussions on refining the reforms to which the Greek government is committed are to continue to the end of April when final agreement is due to be reached. The €7.2bn of European aid that is at stake will only be disbursed at the end of the four-month extension period when scheduled reforms are completed. The same goes for the €1.8bn profit that the ECB has made on the Greek bonds it purchased in 2010 – a financial gain that Greece was promised it would receive back as soon as a primary fiscal surplus was achieved and is, therefore, already more than a year overdue.

Varoufakis had reckoned that the €10.9bn in leftover rescue funds in Greece’s bank recapitalisation funds could make the major contribution to the bridging loan he had sought in place of a bailout extension. Syriza’s programme had them ear-marked to set up a public development bank. These funds have been withdrawn from the Greek fund and placed in the European equivalent (the EFSF) to make sure Greece does not get its hands on the money.

The leash will not be slackened any time soon.

In an indication of the battles that lie ahead the ECB and IMF (two-thirds of the troika) have expressed strong reservations about Varoufakis’ ‘reforms’.

Mario Draghi, president of the ECB, asserted, “The commitments outlined by the [Greek] authorities differ from existing programme commitments… we will have to assess whether measures that are not accepted by the authorities are replaced with measures of equal or better quality.”

Christine Lagarde, director general of the IMF, stated that the Greek proposals were not sufficiently specific and, in “the most important areas”, ie, VAT, pensions, labour market reforms and privatisation, did not go far enough.

The ECB and IMF have only an advisory role to Eurogroup but Lagarde said that the IMF is unlikely to distribute its €3.6bn portion of the €7.2bn aid tranche unless Greece goes further than “the policy parameters outlined in the government’s list”.

Between austerity and neoliberalism

In order to understand the prospects for the majority-Syriza government it is necessary to make one crucial distinction. The politics of austerity and the menu of policy prescriptions that go by the name of neoliberalism are not one and the same thing. The Blair-Brown government, for instance, increased public spending while advancing an agenda of privatisation, marketisation, and the creation of a labour market in which zero-hours contracts could increasingly become the norm.

Now, obviously, in the context of the present capitalist crisis austerity and neoliberalism are usually closely linked. In many ways austerity is an example of the capitalist class “not letting a good crisis go to waste”. The growth of government deficits and public debt in the aftermath of the crash of 2008 have been an opportunity to bear down even more fiercely on working class wages and conditions, to undermine any remaining pockets of working class collective strength, and, while cutting public provision, to give private companies further openings to make money in health, education and the like.

However, what the response to Syriza’s attempt to break the shackles imposed by the troika reveals is that at an international level the capitalist class is far from united on how far austerity should be pressed.

For instance, the United States has long urged the eurozone, the most stagnant region of the world economy, to ease back on deflationary measures. During the high-stakes face-off between Varoufakis and Schäuble, the interventions of president Obama have been positively pro-Greece on the need to increase spending. In an interview with CNN (1 February) he said, “I’m concerned about growth in Europe. Fiscal prudence is important, structural reforms are necessary in many of these countries, but what we’ve learned in the US experience… is that the best way to reduce deficits and restore fiscal soundness is to grow.” And “You cannot keep on squeezing countries that are in the midst of a depression”.

Greece has certainly suffered an economic and social catastrophe equivalent to a depression. The troika’s insistence on outrageously severe spending cuts – just consider what turning a primary fiscal deficit of 9% in 2009 into a projected 4.5% surplus and at a time when government income is shrinking requires – has reduced economic output by a quarter and made balancing the government’s books even more difficult. And the GDP measure masks a fall in spending by Greek citizens and companies of at least 40%.

The social consequences have been unemployment of 26% (over 50% for young people), a reduction in wages of 38% and pensions by 45%. Rates of homelessness and migration, along with suicides have soared.

The Financial Times over the last six weeks in its editorials and in articles by its chief economic commentator, Martin Wolf, and its Europe commentator, Wolfgang Münchau, has run a pretty concerted campaign against the extreme fiscal orthodoxy of Germany and against the concept that a debt matching 177% of GDP – in Greece’s case – can ever be repaid.

On 16 February, Münchau appealed to Varoufakis “to stand up to an utterly dysfunctional policy regime that has proved economically illiterate and politically unsustainable”.

The French and Italian governments – if in rather less forthright terms – have also backed allowing Greece more room to breathe.

Remember, the German commitment to tight controls on public spending – apart from Greece, they are the only government in the EU to run a primary fiscal surplus of 2% or more – and a non-inflationary monetary policy has suffered a significant defeat in recent months. The European court of justice dismissed the German contention that Quantitative Easing was illegal under the EU rules freeing the ECB to launch a larger than expected programme of QE – half a decade after the US, Britain and Japan plotted the same course.

Thus it is possible that in negotiations over the coming months the Greeks might receive some relief on debt repayments and the opportunity to spend a little more on easing the worst of the suffering that has been imposed on the poorest Greeks. After all, the government has already cut deep into the bone in order to reduce spending – health and social services have effectively collapsed.

Beyond the end of the four-month extension of the bailout, new arrangements with Greece’s creditors are required and Tsipras still maintains that Greece will not enter into a new bailout.

Back in November 2012 eurozone finance ministers committed to granting Athens additional debt relief once it ran a primary surplus – a promise unfulfilled for more than a year. It could be that they will deliver on that.

High primary surpluses in future years are aimed reducing total debt to 110% of GDP by 2022 and making room for Greece to re-start paying interest on loans from European creditors (once a ten-year grace period finishes) from 2023. If the repayment period were extended again – possibly adopting a version of the debt swaps Varoufakis has proposed – it would be possible to reduce levels of primary surpluses and ease austerity.

Where absolutely no compromise will be forthcoming is on issues such as privatisation and labour market ‘reforms’. On the agenda of neoliberalism governments around the world speak with one voice and will be determined to block any efforts to chart a different course.

A German official called attention to what is really at stake in the confrontation with Greece: “If we go deeper into the [debt] discount debate, there will be no more reforms in Europe. There will be joyful celebration in the Elysée and probably in Rome, too, if we go down this path.” In other words, debt is the sword of Damocles being used to enforce neo-liberalism on Europe.

Both the French and Italian governments are forcing through deeply unpopular cuts to workers’ rights while asking for more budgetary leeway from the Eurogroup.

Briefings indicate that the Germans want Greece to reverse promises on raising the minimum wage, halting privatisations, rehiring fired public sector workers and reinstating a Christmas bonus for poor pensioners.

That also is the meaning of the rather patronising passage in the Financial Times editorial of 3 February: “The reason EU members should talk with Messrs Tsipras and Varoufakis is that within its idealistic platform may be enough sensible radicalism to sketch out the outlines of a deal. If Syriza can be helped towards implementing the good parts and shelving the bad, Greece may have a brighter future.”

The concerns expressed by Draghi and Lagarde identify what is meant by the “bad parts” and highlight precisely the terrain on which the fiercest battles will be fought in the weeks and months ahead.

Prospects

How determined will Syriza be to fight those battles?

Although Syriza’s roots are in a complex process of unification of activists coming from communist, Maoist and Trotskyist traditions, the programme it presented in the election was actually remarkably modest. While it would begin to raise government spending it would not undo the damage of the last five years. The Thessaloniki programme [3] was launched by Tsipras at that city’s international book fair on 15 September 2014. It reflected the reversal of Syriza’s earlier commitments to default on the debt and nationalise Greeks banks. Now a Syriza government would seek to “write off the greater part of the public debt’s nominal value so that it becomes sustainable” as well as calling for QE – which has begun – and a “European new deal” – which is yet to emerge. Varoufakis inserted a liberal sprinkling of the programme’s promises into the list of reforms he submitted on 24 February. Ripping up regulations that make dismissals easier is an idea which Varoufakis chose not share with his fellow finance ministers. Strikingly, the Thessaloniki programme does not touch at all on the question of privatisation. Nor does it explain how the budget would be balanced if privatisation receipts did not come through.

It was individual ministers who in the first flush of their appointment struck the most radical note and went beyond the boundaries of the Thessaloniki programme. Most were from Syriza’s Left Platform which won 30% of the vote against the leadership faction at Syriza’s unification congress in 2013. Left Platform calls for a rupture with the eurozone and EU as a matter of principle. Whether a Greece exposed to the tender mercies of Putin, the Chinese regime and the international currency markets would find itself in a much improved position is somewhat dubious.

No doubt the ministerial announcements that most dismayed the politicians and officials of the troika were plans to scrap privatisations. Shipping minister, Theodoros Dritas, of Syriza’s Left Platform, halted the privatisation of the remaining holding of the port authority of Piraeus still in state hands: “the public character of Piraeus will be maintained and the privatisation stops right here”. Front runners in the bidding process had been China’s Cosco, and the Danish firm, Maersk. Chinese media reacted poorly to the setback for Cosco which had already purchased and was operating the port’s pier 3. In China the new Greek government was widely denounced. Enthusiastic support came from port workers and the people of Piraeus – traditional backers of the communist party (KKE) who had turned to Syriza in large numbers in this election. They knew too well the deterioration of working conditions on pier 3 and job losses across the whole port.

Panagiotis Lafazanis, minister of productive reconstruction, environment and energy, and leader of the Left Platform (and bogeyman for the Greek media) cancelled the sell-off of the 35% of Public Power Corporation scheduled for this year: “There will be a reshaped PPC which will make a big contribution to restoring the country’s productive activity”.

Christos Spirtzis, infrastructure minister, brought to an end the tendering of fourteen regional airports for which a consortium led by Frankfurt airport had already been named the preferred bidder: “The central position of the government is to stop the privatisations of infrastructure which serve and can help the development of the country”.

Varoufakis, who is not a member of Syriza although he has joined Syriza’s parliamentary group, made clear that he took a different view. Interviewed by Emily Maitlis on Newsnight on 30 January he welcomed the existing investment in Piraeus port which, in his view, had strengthened efficiency and competitiveness. He was looking to “deepen the relationship with the investor”, ie, Cosco. The problem with privatisation, he explained, is that if it is taking place in a deflationary environment then assets that are potentially worth a lot are being “sold off for peanuts” and end up “disappearing into the black hole of debt”.

The commitment that Varoufakis made in his letter of 24 February to proceed with privatisations already underway suggests that he envisages Piraeus port and the fourteen regional airports will be sold off immediately.

This is the key fault line within the government. The way in which it is resolved will indicate whether that government has any serious intention of standing with the working class base of its electoral support and pushing back against neoliberalism as well as austerity – let alone advancing a socialist agenda. The alternative path is to align itself with the left-wing of the international bourgeoisie (Obama, Hollande, Renzi). That would not exactly constitute a breakthrough for the radical left.

Some on the left have argued that the concept of a ‘workers’ government’ [4] is usefully applied to the situation in Greece. Left Unity’s Andrew Burgin enthused in December [5] that it would be the first ‘workers’ government’ since the popular front governments were elected in Spain and France in 1936: “[The election of Syriza] would be a government in which the working class holds office in the parliament while the other institutions of state will remain in the hands of the ruling class. This will create a highly unstable political situation”.

That claim is wildly optimistic. Note that the Thessaloniki programme cast the task of a new government as being the “national reconstruction… of Greek society”. That was the flavour of Tsipras’s victory speech in Athens on the evening of 25 January. The “end of national humiliation” and the like. And anti-German nationalism has hardly been absent from the debate since.

In that light, the formation of a coalition with the right-wing nationalist (xenophobic, anti-Semitic and homophobic) Independent Greeks (ANEL) – who were expelled from the centre-right New Democracy for voting against the troika’s memorandum in 2012 – is less surprising than it at first appeared. The coalition had been signalled before Syriza fell two seats shy of an overall majority. Tsipras had emphasised for the best part of two years that he wanted a government of “national unity” with Syriza and the left at its core, but a majority that did not exclude the right [6]. The formation of the coalition in the space of a few hours was a clear indication that the alliance with ANEL was a strategic decision that had been reached before the election.

Greece, therefore, does not have a workers’ government. The point about the Comintern’s understanding of the role of a ‘workers’ government’ – in effect, the electoral victory of a united front formation – was that it allowed the revolutionary forces to immediately challenge the capitalist class’s control of the state. The appointment of ANEL’s Panos Kammenos to the strategically vital ministry of defence is a clear indication that Tsipras has no intention of transforming the balance of class forces within the state.

In fact, Andrew Burgin’s claim about the 1936 governments is also inaccurate. They were alliances of social democratic parties with radical liberals backed by Stalinised communist parties. Only when the working class forced the pace independently of the parties in government – a wave of strikes in France before the government even took office and the armed resistance of Spanish workers to the nationalist coup – was the situation radicalised.

A similar process along with the tempering of a principled leadership in Greece – and hopefully across Europe – is the only option for advancing the interests of the working class.

[1] Eurogroup statement on Greece (Feb 20 2015): http://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/press/press-releases/2015/02/150220-eurogroup-statement-greece/

[2] Greek finance minister’s letter to the Eurogroup (Feb 24 2015): http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/02/24/us-eurozone-greece-text-idUSKBN0LS0V520150224

[3] The Thessaloniki Programme: http://www.syriza.gr/article/id/59907/SYRIZA—THE-THESSALONIKI-PROGRAMME.html

[4] John Riddell has discussed and provided the first accurate English translation of the final version of the resolution on the workers’ government concept that was adopted at the fourth congress of the comintern: https://johnriddell.wordpress.com/2011/08/14/the-comintern%e2%80%99s-unknown-decision-on-workers%e2%80%99-governments/

[5] Why we must support a Syriza government in Greece (Dec 10 2014): http://leftunity.org/why-we-must-support-a-syriza-government-in-greece/

[6] Baptiste Dericquebourg ‘Where Syriza stands’, Le Monde Diplomatique, July 2013: http://mondediplo.com/2013/07/07syriza

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