Eurozone crisis

Syriza victory brings joy and expectations

Issue section: 

Panos Garganas, a leading member of the revolutionary left organisation Antarsya, assesses the mood in Greece following Syriza's victory.

There were huge celebrations on the night that Syriza won the Greek general election. Many people turned out to hear Alexis Tsipras declare victory. People are optimistic despite Syriza swiftly forming a coalition government with the right wing Independent Greeks.

Between austerity and resistance

Issue section: 
Issue: 
Author: 

Ireland has been hailed as an austerity success story. Kieran Allen examines the reality behind the hype and the prospects for resistance from below.

Ireland's exit from the Troika - the International Monetary Fund (IMF), European Union (EU) and European Central Bank (ECB) - bailout programme on 16 December is being celebrated as proof that austerity works. The storyline from the Irish ruling class is that sovereignty has been regained. They claim that 85 percent of the "heavy lifting" has been done and only a little more sacrifice needs to be squeezed from the population. The EU elite see the exit as a much-needed propaganda point to counter the growing criticism of their doctrine of "expansionary austerity".

The greek crisis and the Left

Issue section: 

Socialist Review interviewed Thanasis Kampagiannis, a member of the Greek Socialist Workers Party (SEK), about the political situation in Greece, the moves to the right by Syriza and the prospects for workers' resistance to austerity and the Troika (the EU, European Central Bank and IMF).


The crisis that followed the move by the government to shut down ERT, the public TV and radio broadcaster, seems to have left the government in a weaker position and led to the departure of the Democratic Left from the ruling coalition. Can the government survive?

Small island, big crisis

Issue section: 
Issue: 
Author: 

At the time of writing it is still unclear whether Cyprus's banks will finally re-open. What has taken place on this small island state seems part of a by now familiar pattern of financial speculation, real estate boom and resulting collapse of a banking sector - one that had ballooned to around eight times the size of the economy it was attached to.

But two significant developments are important to note. Firstly, the decision by the Troika of the European Union, European Central Bank and the IMF to insist that bank depositors make a hefty contribution towards the cost of a bailout of the Cypriot economy is unprecedented.

Regime crisis in Spain

Issue section: 

Spain has seen increasing calls for independence for Catalonia, the Basque Country and Galicia, alongside strikes and protests. Joel Sans Molas argues that economic turmoil and austerity are creating the biggest political crisis in the country since the overthrow of Franco's regime 35 years ago

The economic crisis in the Spanish state continues to deepen, intertwined with a political crisis of ever greater dimensions. The conservative Popular Party (PP) government is under pressure on all fronts: economic, political and social.

Austerity and a Greek island

Issue section: 
Author: 

Our view of austerity in Greece is usually shaped by events on the mainland. Chris Jones, who lives on the island of Samos, looks at the impact of the crisis on people living in the Greek periphery

Stories in the mainstream media, both abroad and in Greece, say that the Greek government is not cutting hard enough or quickly enough. In reality, wages have been slashed by 40 percent as have all benefits and pensions. Work has evaporated. Seven percent is the projected reduction for this year alone and we are in the fifth year of recession. This is disaster time for ordinary Greeks.

Global recovery fades

Issue section: 
Author: 

The world suffered the economic equivalent of a heart attack in 2008-9, triggered by the collapse of the Wall Street bank Lehman Brothers. The current condition of the global economy isn't as acute. But a raft of bad economic data over the last couple of months point to a patient whose breathing is starting to become much more irregular.

Across the core of the capitalist system, economies are either slowing, stagnating or contracting. In the United States, the rebound from the crisis was already the weakest on record, hovering at around two percent annual growth. But this has weakened further, slipping to 1.7 percent in the latest set of GDP figures. This is despite four years of $1 trillion plus government deficits and huge injections of cash into the economy by the Federal Reserve, the central bank, on top of that. And it could get worse.

Germany: the rise of the Pirate Party

Issue section: 
Author: 

The German Pirate Party has captured the imagination of millions of young and unemployed voters but, asks Mark Bergfeld, are they really the radical anti-establishment force they claim to be?

"Que no! Que no! Que no nos representan!" They don't represent us. From the streets of Buenos Aires in 2001 to the squares of Puerta del Sol and Placa de Cataluna in 2011 this slogan captures the anger and alienation that millions of people feel towards the political system made up of professional politicians, lobbyists and unelected technocrats.

A new phase in the crisis

Issue section: 
Issue: 
Author: 

The crisis in Europe has entered a new phase. 2008 saw the onset of the worst economic crisis since the 1930s. In 2010, and especially from 2011, there was a marked upswing in resistance, with a series of mass strikes in Greece, Spain, Portugal, France, Belgium and Britain, and the rise of the indignados in Portugal, Spain and Greece last spring and then the Occupy movement in the autumn.

Now the mood of bitterness and revolt against austerity has received a powerful electoral expression which will have major ideological, political and economic reverberations across the continent.

Eurozone crisis: can Greek workers defy the bankers?

Issue section: 
Issue: 

Greeks must accept austerity, it is often argued, because the alternative would be worse. Sotiris Kontogiannis argues for a workers' default against the bankers

The government and the media in Greece are conducting a scare campaign against the prospect of a default and exit from the eurozone. The measures imposed by the "troika" (the International Monetary Fund, the European Union and the European Central Bank) may be harsh, they say. Many people may suffer. But the alternatives are even worse. Without the assistance of the troika, Greece would default on its debts. The state would run out of money. Salaries and pensions would have to be suspended.

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Eurozone crisis