During the last months we have been witnessing a vulgar attack aiming at the economy of Greece. This attack of the markets, similar to a menacing and anonymous ghost hovering all over Europe, becomes day after day more aggressive reaching beyond any frontier or limit. Overwhelmed by masses of news that aim rather to terrorize than to elucidate, we are becoming aware that what we lack is not mere information but rather a thought capable of grasping the global aspect of the situation that is stably deteriorating: A thought leading to an action which would propose alternative ways of life and of development.
Favoring the plans of the markets, a persistent campaign of several Medias has fed the European public with polluted information in order to achieve the construction of a misguided public opinion. Based on economic as well on racial criteria those Medias have presented the Greek case as a constant and isolated abnormality and Greece has been declared to be a nation worthless to belong to Europe. We, however, know that politics based on the quest of scapegoats have in the past led to the horror of wars, national cleansing and concentration camps and that, today, such conceptions are not only unjust but also erroneous and destructive....This neo- racist propaganda has created a mood which forbids a rapid and efficient European intervention to the crisis and has finally trapped several governments, including those that had shown a certain leniency, into ignoring that the attack was not limited to Greece and its economy, but aimed at the economy, the coherence and the existence itself of the European south and finally the whole of Europe.
Under the threat of the evaluation criteria European citizens are forced to accept measures that are gradually becoming more intolerable, while they ignore where they will stop and whether they will lead to a better future. Nevertheless, in Greece, Portugal, Spain, France, Italy and elsewhere, an increasing number of people refuse to comply with one-dimensional policies that aim at the reestablishment of an unhealthy system which, like Saturn, tries to devour once more its children. Such a bulimic capitalist tendency is to a great extent the reason of the economic and political crisis that rages over Europe and elsewhere, as well as over Greece. The countries’ problems are largely due to the exorbitant costs of armaments, owed to the fact that Europe is incapable to protect its frontiers as well as its economy. Moreover, those who have been and still are responsible for the problems of the country are several exponents of power that place their personal interests before the public ones and have prompted a part of the society to ignore its responsibilities, its obligations as well as its rights, thus undermining of collectivity and civic conscience.
Although necessary for a fruitful self-criticism, the above statements, must not lead to the assumption that Greek women and men demonstrating today in order to express their protest, do this because they wish to safeguard unjustified privileges. Privileged people are not very often ready to demonstrate, and salaries in Greece are among the lowest in the Euro-zone. One has to take under account not only a 15% of officially recognized unemployed persons but also the non-official unemployment as well as small pensioners receiving a pension under the rate of survival and young people working in extenuating and humiliating conditions for salaries ranging from 400 to 250 euros per month. The rise of the international and public debt of the country and the total submission of the government to the policies of the European Union and the International Monetary Fund are the reason for which the sums obtained by new loans serve only to cover the exorbitant interests, making impossible any development. Greeks, as well as the rest of other Europeans, are incapable of knowing the supplementary measures that will be imposed on them at any moment. The Greek parliament is underrated from the moment that it only has to subscribe to the orders of the foreign inspectors. The Prime Minister, democratically elected only a few months ago, has several times declared that the country has lost a part of its national independence. This means that the ghost of the markets is threatening today, in Greece as well everywhere else in Europe, to subdue politics to the occult wishes of para- economy.
All this constitutes an urgent need for vigilance in a country whose history is full of mass mobilizations against occupation forces, dictatorships, and social injustices. Such mobilizations, despite the tragic and unacceptable loss of three human lives, are in Greece, like in most other places in Europe, non violent in their overwhelming majority. Moreover, in a country where the stranger and the foreigner have always been considered as sacred, they do not threaten the people that visit the country. Greek citizens need to pass from refusal and denunciation to the invention of a new, original and fruitful positive attitude that will stand against despair and open perspectives for the future.
It is often said that the Greek and the European crisis are not exclusively of an economic, but also of a political and cultural order. That means that in any possible answer to the crisis, the cultural factor must hold a central position. The material and immaterial life of cities where we live, of the encounters and the relations we manage to establish, the various languages we speak and the narrations establishing our identities cannot be erased by the force of the numbers of stock exchanges, fluctuating according to the wish of market indicators. Having or not having a job, conserving or loosing our human rights, starting from the right to dignity, the right to enrich oneself individually or collectively through a substantial intercultural dialogue, is above all, connected to culture, education, and values of every civilization. This means that creation, thought, research in the fields of human sciences, economy, energy, ecology etc., all the range of activities that are today absorbed or marginalized by the system, must become central in order to offer an answer to the crisis.
This is the reason why we are appealing to all women and men who, in Greece as well as in any other place, have the feeling that they are directly concerned in the crisis and aspire to break the barriers of isolation that hold us prisoners like a narcissist armor castrating our will to resist. We are appealing to all those that are striving to set themselves free from stereotypes and refuse the division of Europe between North and South, Catholics and Protestants, Orthodox, Muslims or atheists, rich or pour. To all those that refuse the new economic war. Signing this document might represent a contribution to the creation of networks of memory, communication, criticism, that will propose common actions in Greece and elsewhere, uniting people of our continent and the rest of the world. Answering by concrete actions to the neo- racism and to the terrorism of the markets signifies an effort to transform the breaches opened by the terrible crisis we suffer, in an opportunity for the emergence of a new conscience of the European citizens and for the creative return of the political in our lives.
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