The following statement was issued by the Communist Organization of Greece (KOE) on 6 July 2012. The statement has been translated by Azad.
Forward towards a new SYRIZA, a people's SYRIZA!
Following the most recent meeting of SYRIZA's National Coordination Committee (NCC), a new period has opened up for SYRIZA. SYRIZA finds itself facing totally new duties, of greater import than those existing during the period before 6 May. The speech of Alexis Tsipras at the opening workshop of the NCC specified a very different framework and mode of action for SYRIZA within society and among the people. His speech specifies a qualitative transformation for SYRIZA and not simply growth in its membership rolls.
Regarding these new duties, we note the following points.
(A) Many aspects make it feasible for us to now "turn the page" regarding SYRIZA. These include the overthrow of the political scenery as we understood it before 6 May; the collapse of the bipartisan system; the power to demolish in its entirety the old Greek political system; the "take-off" of SYRIZA from 4.5% to 27% of total ballots cast; and SYRIZA distinguishing itself as a strategic opposition. But whether we will actually turn the page, whether we will decisively proceed towards a new political transformation of the people, will be determined to a large extent by SYRIZA itself. It will be determined by whether the "SYRIZA of the 4.5%" can be quickly transformed, in the coming days, without impediments created by old habits, into a popular and democratic formation of the Left.
(B) SYRIZA encountered a great popular current that had developed over the past two years. That is, SYRIZA encountered a large current favoring change, deliverance of the nation from the Troika and austerity, rejection of the old political system, a democratic current and a current of independence. SYRIZA electorally expressed this popular current because SYRIZA differentiated itself from the other Lefts and primarily because for the first time since the Junta [1967-1974], a Left party and Tsipras stepped forward and assumed responsibility for an alternative government solution. The crack that opened in the old Greek political system will not be closed. Yet this significant popular current, which supports SYRIZA and supports their hopes in SYRIZA, is unusually fluid and new. It will not exist ad infinitum particularly if SYRIZA fails to create organic ties with this current, if SYRIZA does not create an opening in these circumstances, if this new world does not embrace SYRIZA as its own, or if SYRIZA does not establish a kinematic relationship with the people.
(C) In the same manner in which this political current was channeled at breakneck speed in SYRIZA's direction, it cannot be ruled out that there might appear just as quickly other "solutions" within the bounds of the system. This would occur if the relationship between SYRIZA and this popular current is not consolidated; if this relationship does not acquire an organic character, a participatory character, self-organization and a democractic character. The organization of SYRIZA, its massification, its intrepid openness towards a society willing and able to become a protagonist of history, these things too are part and parcel of the people's organization. These are a guarantee for effective organization and resistance of the people. The transformation of SYRIZA must rely on the self-organization of the popular as the determining factor.
(D) If SYRIZA were to form a government, it would not be able to govern even a single day without the participation of society. Yesterday's SYRIZA cannot meet this need. It would be difficult to govern even for a bourgeois party that by chance previously earned 4.5% of the vote. One can therefore understand that SYRIZA has many enemies. It is unlikely to govern without transforming itself into a large faction of the Left. It is equally difficult, without such a transformation, to meet the needs and accomplish the tasks of a strategic left opposition. In every neighborhood, in every village, in every workplace, in every social space, SYRIZA must be present and organized. SYRIZA's few thousand members and independent supporters, forming the components of yesterday's SYRIZA, have only a few months to become tens of thousands of new members of SYRIZA. SYRIZA must become a force more representative of the 1,660,000 people who voted for it. We are not speaking here of 'normal' campaign of organizational integration where ten parties will become fifteen, but the invasion of SYRIZA by the people who supported it: assemblies, the Squares, the initiatives of social solidarity, people mobilized for two years now, hoping in SYRIZA and participating in SYRIZA. In other words, a broad formation of the Left but not the yesterday's SYRIZA.
(E) We must recognize that SYRIZA, as a mechanism, is currently unprepared to make this huge leap. We face before us a critical confrontation with ourselves, our inertia and rigidity. To respond to the tasks before us, we must transform ourselves, change the basis of yesterday's SYRIZA and not just the leadership. The method that SYRIZA hitherto utilized in order to be accountable to this new world, the lack of practicality in its operation, its bureaucratic attitudes and sluggishness, the kind of initiatives it adopted and the old habits ought to change. Methods must be discovered in order for SYRIZA to encounter the people. SYRIZA must be ready to accept the major changes required for an invasion by the people. This invasion will connect SYRIZA more with real problems, the political needs and concerns of the people, while the invasion would mean a more democratic operation of SYRIZA itself. In this regard, we reject any idea that maintains the old balances but has no relation to current needs.
(F) Whatever happened in the past two months changed everything. We must also change. The "components of SYRIZA" are objectively the pre-history of SYRIZA. We must move on to not just a SYRIZA of the future, but a SYRIZA of the people. SYRIZA in the people. The issue is not limited to issuing SYRIZA membership cards. The right to speak must be given not only to the membership, but the most powerful component of SYRIZA, the people who supported SYRIZA and placed their hopes in it. This cannot occur for a people won over to a clear platform, but requires a constant desire and need for change and an overthrow of austerity, the conquest of democracy and independence, the opening of a productive reconstruction. The identity of the new SYRIZA will be the alternative perspective that brings together all these people.
(G) We live in historic times. In Latin America a decade ago, there emerged leftist governments that expressed significant popular currents supporting change and conflict with neoliberal politics and U.S. dominance. In Europe, a very different continent in different circumstances, there now has emerged the likelihood for governing "off the the rails" of neoliberalism and the politics imposed for decades now by Germany, the EU, the markets and Merkel. The weakest link is now Greece. It is necessary to break the link, it is necessary to learn how to construct a significant popular and social bloc, able to reach the heights of government. This is not the responsibility only of SYRIZA, but the responsibility of all Lefts, all progressive, patriotic, democratic, anti-austerity forces. But it first and foremost concerns SYRIZA and the duties that have placed it into history.
Let us respond to the historical moment
For a people's Left, for a people's SYRIZA