Back-to-back speeches by Yanis Varoufakis & John McDonnell (audio)

YV speaking at PCS meeting 2015-09-14 at 08.19.59

This audio was recorded (apologies for the iffy quality) at the PCS fringe meeting at this year’s TUC Conference in Brighton – Saturday 12th September 2015. A few hours later it was announced that John McDonnell was selected, by Jeremy Corbin, as Shadow Chancellor

13 thoughts on “Back-to-back speeches by Yanis Varoufakis & John McDonnell (audio)

  1. @ Dean, when I said that an anti-memorandum vote is a commitment to resistance and a fight to the end, I meant an end to evil nonsense and a solid new beginning. However I believe it will be won in conjunction with others – France etc. – not alone.

    As for celebrating Metaxas’ OXI, would you rather be France who rolled over, or amongst the myriad collaborators? Greece said no, as did Russia. Both at huge cost to themselves. ‘Crazy’ as we are, we wouldn’t have it otherwise.

    • Greece did NOT welcome the invader by any stretch of the imagination, although, Yes, there were collaborators. And the same people as now, same families.

      As for Russia, it is a death trap for invading armies.
      Whereas geographically (islands & highlands) Greece is tailor made for resistance.

    • Absolutely welcomed the invader plus on the record that he was proud of it:

      “Tsolakoglou , along with several other senior generals began considering surrendering to the Germans. Thus, on 20 April, with the cooperation of the commanders of I Corps, Lt. Gen. Panagiotis Demestichas and II Corps, Lt. Gen. Georgios Bakos, and the metropolitan of Ioannina, Spyridon, he relieved and replaced Lt. Gen. Ioannis Pitsikas, the commander of the Epirus Army Section. He immediately sent messengers to the Germans proposing surrender, and on the same day signed a surrender protocol with the commander of the Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler brigade, Sepp Dietrich.

      Despite urgent orders by Greek Commander-in-chief Alexandros Papagos, that he be relieved and resistance continued to the last, the next day, at Larissa, the surrender was formalized, with Tsolakolglou signing the unconditional surrender of the Hellenic Army to the Germans. The protocol made – deliberately – no reference to the other invading Axis partner, Italy, whom the Greeks considered to have defeated and wished to, in the words of John Keegan, “…deny the Italians the satisfaction of a victory they had not earned…”. However, at Benito Mussolini’s insistence, the surrender ceremony was repeated a third time to include Italian representatives on 23 April.

      Tsolakoglou himself wrote in his memoirs: “I found myself before a historic dilemma: To allow the fight to continue and have a holocaust or, obeying the pleas of the Army’s commanders, to assume the initiative of surrendering…. Having made my decision to dare, I did not consider responsibilities…. Until today I have not regretted my actions. On the contrary, I feel proud.”

    • And the story continues w/ absolute proof of collaboration with the Germans:

      “On 30 April 1941, Tsolakoglou was appointed Prime Minister of a collaborationist government by the Axis occupation authorities. Several other generals who had served in the Greco-Italian War became members of the Tsolakoglou government, such as Generals Panagiotis Demestichas and Georgios Bakos. Tsolakoglou remained as head of the government until 2 December 1942, when he was dismissed and replaced by Konstantinos Logothetopoulos.

      After Greece was liberated, Tsolakoglou was arrested, tried by a Special Collaborators Court in 1945 and sentenced to death. His death penalty was ultimately commuted to life imprisonment, and he died of leukaemia in prison in 1948.”

  2. Let’s get back to Greece for a moment:

    “The calculation being made in Berlin and Paris is that if Tsipras’s Syriza party were to lose Sunday’s vote, it would return to the opposition and abandon its (already lukewarm) support of the bailout. Far better, the thinking goes, to leave Tsipras in charge — of the country and the bailout. Even in opposition, Meimarakis’s party is likely to still support the bailout.”

    It then follows, that if Syriza comes in 1st place this Sunday and subsequently forms a narrow coalition government, it will be destroyed soon thereafter. Could a former Greek FM pass on a friendly message to Syriza not to engage in such gigantic mistake?

    Live to fight another day. Don’t become Schauble’s failed student again. There is no room for such error this time around. Let Meimarakis get destroyed in carrying his Schauble mentor’s policies towards disaster and then Tsipras could rule Greece comfortably for the next 20 years.

    Do NOT make the rookie mistake of grabbing for power this time around. It’s way too obvious of a trap.

    Yanis, please take care of Greece first and then pursue these “European solidarity” movements for which you are a natural. I think you owe it to your country and to those who voted you as the #1 MP with the highest number of votes during the January election. No matter how they treated you, set the unpleasantness aside and instead put some sense in Tsipras before he makes a mistake that can not be undone.

    • As a Greek voter, an old fashioned patriot, and now a resistance fighter, it is impossible for me to vote for ANY party that supports MOU3.

      It is clear that the main purpose of this election is to make Greeks “own” MOU3 (Troika market-speak). And in doing so, legitimise an extraordinary, purposely spiteful, purposely destructive and punitive policy that Eurogroup and IMF publically acknowledged is impossible to sustain, and whose savagery and sheer destructiveness shocked the world. By legitimising it, we Greeks shall be saying more or less that “nothing” happened in 2015 and the EU has nothing to be ashamed of. “Move along, nothing to see here”. We shall be collaborating in our further impoverishment, the complete destruction of our economy, the looting of our country and further enrichment of the oligarchs.

      Worse, we shall be agreeing to be run by a junta, since Mr. Verwey and his group shall control ALL finance, revenues and budget; and also legislation. This renders our parliament null and void. So we shall be collaborating with the rituals of democracy being used to disguise the absence of democracy.

      Secondly, NO. That 62% was a ‘no surrender’ vote. In my opinion that meant up to and including grexit if need be. Please note there has been no public poll about Grexit since May – only Syriza’s purported “secret poll”. (Why secret?) There is no discussion of grexit and no polling. Grexit is our number 1 Taboo.

      Although there was reference to the historical ‘OXI’ during the referendum, the fact is that Metaxas, a fascist, when faced with an impossible ultimatum, instantly made the correct choice. (‘C’est la guerre.’) Despite this decision setting in train a series of events that included defeat by the Germans, starvation, ethnic cleansing, deportations, bombing of our ports and infrastructure by both sides, wholesale murder in villages, wholesale murder of resistance fighters….I have never YET read anything, or met any Greek, that said he made the wrong choice. Extraordinary. In fact we view his decision with PRIDE.

      The 62% NO was no simple knee-jerk rebellion, it was extremely well-informed REFUSAL. And Syriza ignored it. Tsipras, who urged us to vote NO, did not come to Syntagma to celebrate with us. And the rest is history.

      Apart from NO, there is also the Debt Truth Commission findings, which are ignored. And reparations question, also ignored.

      I voted for SYRIZA in January, but they are finished for me. In sum, we were manipulated and sold false goods, in that ‘Core Syriza’ turned out to represent not the real Greeks but neo-Greeks. The reasons for capitulation are flimsy since we had the tools to fight (starting with a simple refusal) – the fight should have continued until the end.

      My first foreboding came when they took Yanis off the front line. SYRIZA has proved its mediocrity by ejecting from its body its two most intelligent and morally impeccable personalities, Yanis and Zoe Konstantopoulou, and no longer providing a home for high quality persons such as Nadia Valavani and Sofia Sakorafa.

      Through SYRIZA’s act of capitulation – whether through cowardice or collaboration – we now face occupation, rule by an economic and legal junta and extreme misery. Add in the migrants now trapped into the Balkans by our “partners”….

      I shall vote for Zoe and my hopes are now invested in a European alliance of resistance…

      ps Tsipras (is he smoking something?) had the face to claim this week that by voting SYRIZA, we vote for NO.

    • Elenits:

      Let’s be practical. The only 3 parties left with an open anti-MOU attitude (let’s call them the purists) are (ranked by % of vote expected):

      1. Golden Dawn
      2. KKE (Communist Party of Greece)
      3. LAE (for which you are going to vote).

      Forgive me for saying this but wasting a vote is just that: vote waste.

      As to the OXI (No) resistance references of the past, 2 main observations spring to mind which prove that Greeks are an enslaved population by design adopted to conditions of slavery:

      1. I know of no other nation which celebrates the start of the war (28 October 1940) and not the result of the war usually ending in victory (which in the Greek case is absolutely absent). Therefore Greeks are conditioned to accept heroic acts which lead to catastrophe, disaster and ultimately defeat (see recent negotiation with Troika chapter – a heroic bare chested assault on the enemy fort ending in total failure).

      2. By accepting (via the teachings of church/religion) that Constantinople is our true capital, we become the only European nation with a still enslaved capital. In other words, Greeks are taught from an early age to feel and act as slaves and to endure slavery for perhaps tactical reasons until some future date when our “strategy” (by such we mean our hopes and wishes) leads us to freedom. What is happening right now to German occupied Greece is wholly consitent with such scenario.

      Bottom line: We don’t deserve freedom because we are unwilling to sacrifice for it. Every Greek pretends to be a patriot but in reality we decide on wallet and self-interest issues. And that is sad, very sad.

    • I don’t agree with your slave theory, perhaps because I come from generations of troublemakers. And we are by NO MEANS an exception.

      Dean, an anti-memorandum vote, far from ‘wasted’, is the most precious and valuable vote (and voice) in Greece today. Though the future looks dark, it is a commitment to resistance and a fight to the end.

      There actually IS no ‘tactical’ voting in this sick and surreal election.
      It is completely immaterial which pro-memorandum / pro-junta party comes first or second: functionally they are all the same. I am sorry to say this about SYRIZA, but Syriza made its choice (defying the will of not only 2/3 of its voters but 2/3 of the nation) – and the Syrizans who agree with that choice are the only ones left in this ‘turnabout’ mach2 version of the party. As for Tsipras’ claims to get better terms this is pure vote-mongering and absurd. Whoever wins will have no power. And SYRIZA is finished.

      And if you wonder why so many people (35%) opt for ALL pro-memorandum parties forming a coalition, it is not because they trust these parties, nor the ND/PASOK/Potami fantasy of ‘National Salvation Government’. It is the spirit of the Paris commune: let the pro-memorandum Parties stand up together and ‘own’ MOU3 – and no escapees!!

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