I salute the comrades who participate in the yearly meeting of International Red Help. Comrades from Greece participate for the first time in this meeting, members of the solidarity assembly for political prisoners in Greece who surely will inform you about the situation in Greece with regards to political prisoners, solidarity and generally the political situation in Greece. From my side I will inform you about some recent events that took place here. On February 21st the wanted comrade, Pola Roupa, on whom a bounty has been set, attempted to hijack a helicopter in order to break myself, as well as other political prisoners condemned for armed struggle, out of the prison of Korydallos. Unfortunately, the hijack failed due to the reaction of the pilot, who turned out to be an ex-policeman and was armed. Fortunately, the comrade got away safe and unhurt. Following this, security measures in the wing where we are held have increased. The comrade Pola Roupa and I as well as the other political prisoners have assumed the political responsibility for this attempt with public statements. A few days later on the 3rd of March, the 2nd trial of Revolutionary Struggle was completed, in which I was sentenced to life imprisonment for the attack of the organization against the Bank of Greece, plus 129 years for the shooting against 5 cops and the injury of one of them at the incident when I was arrested and for the expropriation of two banks. This is the first time where a sentence of life imprisonment is passed in Greece for a bomb attack in which a warning was given and where there were neither dead nor injured. This demonstrates the increasing severity of the regime in Greece concerning the treatment of armed revolutionary action and of those who like me remain consistent and impenitent as regards the choice of armed struggle.
The political, economic and social situation in Greece is very difficult. On the one hand, the continuing implementation of rescue programs (the so called memorandum) that Greek governments implement make conditions evermore difficult for large parts of the population, while the international economic crisis continues and deepens in Europe, and on the other hand, the huge wave of refugees from the war zones of Middle East, mainly Syria. All this creates a highly explosive climate not only in Greece, where due to the closing of the Balkan borders and also the amendment of the Schengen treaty by some countries of the EU thousands of refugees and migrants have become trapped in the country, but also in Europe where the foundations of the European Union have been ruptured irreparably. These conditions are burdened even further by the attacks of Islamic militants in 2015 in Paris, France and in Brussels a few days ago. This explosive combination of global economic crisis along with the geopolitical issues in the Middle East, which are a result of the war against “terrorism” and of the politics of the West, the wars in Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan that caused the refugee wave to Europe, shakes the foundations of the E.U. and may bring about its end as we know it. The result of this is, on the one hand, the adoption by countries of the EU of increasingly authoritarian and totalitarian measures, as in France after the attacks of Islamic militants, the rise of a police state in the name of security and, on the other hand, the rise of the far right who pursue the return to a regime of a powerful nation – state, who press for the closure of the borders and the deportation of foreigners and refugees, who want to bring back a regime of national capitalism. Worst of all is that following the attacks, a consensus has emerged by parts of European society, who rally behind their governments out of fear and insecurity, reacting to the arrival of refugees, thereby facilitating the implementation of the authoritarian measures European governments are taking to deal with the wave of refugees. Unfortunately, the people of Europe, in all the previous years, did not drastically resist when their governments gave their consent and collaborated with the war against “terrorism” that was unleashed by the USA after 2001, when they consented to the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and when their governments sent troops to assist Americans in the occupation of these countries. It is precisely for this reason that they doubly suffer the consequences of the war against “terrorism”, such as that there are citizen victims of the reprisal attacks of Islamic militants and that governments take increasingly authoritarian and totalitarian measures in the name of this war and of security. The cosmopolitan character of the EU is already in ruins.
I believe that it is only through the growth, inside western countries, of revolutionary movements that will strive to destroy capitalism and the state and to create an International European Commune, that there can be an end to this war, to racism, xenophobia, exploitation and repression and to all the banes of capitalism and authority. Only an international social revolution with anti-capitalist and anti-statist characteristics in Europe and beyond can be the answer to the current situation, to the global economic crisis that deepens more and more and to the war against “terrorism”. Unfortunately comrades we are far from this goal. Nevertheless we must continue fighting in this direction.
Nikos Maziotis member of Revolutionary Struggle