Article by Nina Gunić
Hundreds of migrants are in hunger strike in Athen since 6th April this year. In addition to the hunger strikers in Greece's capital city, migrants in several reception centers in the whole country are joining the strike. One can say that up to 2.000 migrants are actually on hunger strike. They are not mainly demanding the right to stay but rather to have the right to pass through Greece and to stay in another country in Europe. Greece is the main route for migrants to enter the European Union. Out of 11.5 million people living in Greece, about 1.2 million are migrants. 90% of the flow of migrants coming into the EU passes through Greece. They are often attacked by police forces as well as fascist thugs, mainly organized by the Golden Down or their sympathizers.
Since several months the Greek government built “reception centers” which are nothing else but prisons for the migrants. The facilities are very poor and lots of migrants are put together on small place. The capitalist government keeps them isolated and than deport them back to their homeland or another country outside the EU under police control. This procedure happens without any sort of trial, any sort of hearing in front of a judge not to mention any jurors. Although a bourgeois court would not change the situation for most of the migrants compared to now it shows nevertheless that even the minimal elements of “democracy” which one can find in the capitalist system are not open for migrants. We don’t even have the possibility get the illusion of a “democracy” as the capitalist system shows his face very open and aggressive towards us and our rights.
Two years ago there was as well a hunger strike of about 300 migrants in Greece, mainly coming from Northern Africa. Their strike took place at the same time as the first wave of revolutionary situations occurred in the Arab world. Many migrants who are working and living in Greece for more than seven years are now threatened with deportation. The Greek ruling class tries to justify this move with the explanation of the deep economical crisis. In such a situation, they say, Greece has to get rid of the migrants. They attack the poorest of our class brothers and sisters, the migrants without any papers to stay.
It becomes obvious how ridiculous their arguments are if one looks to the reality: the real problems are the super-rich in Greece and the other capitalist parasites. The 900 families, who run merchant freight, control 15% of this sector worldwide. 20 Billion Euros are recorded as money, which were openly transferred out of Greece by the super-rich since the crisis hit the country in late 2009. The amount of unrecorded wealth that was brought away from the tax authorities is of course much higher. The ruling class attacked the migrants living under the worst conditions whilst the super-rich are saving their billions of Euro. Furthermore the ship-owners are not paying any taxes for their profits and the volume of their tax-free earnings reached officially 112billion Euros! Let us recall that at the same time when Greece's public debt stood at 280billions. The wealth of only the 12 most super rich families in Greece add up to about 13billion Euros. This shows once more the absurdity of the capitalist logic and the need to smash the capitalist system.
As in many other capitalist countries, migrants form an essential part of the working class – in particular its lower strata. In their huge majority they are nationally oppressed and super-exploited. They are discriminated in their citizen rights, their right to use their mother language in public administration and education, they gets lower wages for the same amount of work and are discriminated in their access to social service and pensions. This is why any attempt of migrants to resist and fight for their rights must be supported. This is why the RCIT calls for a revolutionary migrant movement.
The Revolutionary Communist International Tendency demands:
* Open the boarders for all migrants and give them immediate possibility to pass through the country or to stay as long as they want with all democratic rights!
* Full and immediate citizenship for all illegal migrants without any bureaucratic obstacles!
* Stop any deportation! Dissolve all deportation camps and all reception centers!
* Equal pay for equal work for all migrants, as well as for women, youth and other oppressed!
* For the abolition of the official state languages! Equal treatment and equal supply of languages of migrants in the schools, courts, public administration and in the media! Free and voluntary offer for all to learn the languages of other national groups in the country!
* For the building of armed self-defense units from the migrants and the workers movement against the attacks of the fascists of Golden Dawn and others!
* Immediate expropriation of the nearly fully tax-free super-rich families!
* Forward to an indefinite general strike! The one and two-days strikes are not sufficient to shatter the ruling class!
* For the building of action committees and strike councils to build for and coordinate during an indefinite general strike! Forward to the building of armed militias to be ready to defend the strike against any attacks of the ruling class which will come as sure as sparks fly upwards! Forward to a workers government in order to expropriate the capitalist class and to open the road towards socialism! This can only be reached via the armed uprising, i.e. the socialist revolution!
* For the building of a revolutionary migrant movement! For the right of caucus for migrants in the unions and the organizations of the workers' movement!
It is most urgent that activists of the workers movement mobilize for the support of the migrants. In addition to solidarity demonstrations and other actions, they should organize pressure on the bureaucratic leaderships of the trade unions and the two main bourgeois workers parties – SYRIZA and KKE – to organize actions in solidarity with the migrants. It is a shame that these reformist forces – which are dominated by the labor bureaucracy and the small aristocratic upper layer of the working class – ignore the migrant's demands and adapt in one way or another to Greek chauvinism.
We demand from the leaderships of SYRIZA, the KKE and all trade unions to mobilize the workers for the fight to implement these demands! If you present yourselves as representatives of our class, than proof it in reality by your deeds!
As revolutionary communists we know that to fulfill all these demands we need to challenge and overthrow the bureaucratic leaderships of the trade unions and the bourgeois workers parties in Greece like SYRIZA and the KKE (whose trade union faction is called PAME).
The task of both Greek and migrant revolutionaries is to fight for such a perspective amongst the migrant as well as the workers movements. Revolutionaries should unite in an authentic revolutionary communist organization in order to advance the struggle to build a new revolutionary workers party! Such a party would lead the fight of our class consistently against the class enemy and its reformist lackeys at the top of the workers movement!