Why was the anti-bailout left defeated in the Greek elections?

Yesterday’s piece on Jacobin by Panagiotis Sotiris is an insightful analysis of the disappointing result of the anti-bailout left movement Popular Unity (the Syriza rebels) in Sunday’s Greek elections.

The writer is a member of the movement and makes some good points. The main one, which I very much agree with, is that Popular Unity failed to articulate a clear alternative to the bailout – in other words, the problem was not so much that they supported Grexit, but that they didn’t make it clear enough if they did so wholeheartedly, and what their plan for such a transition would be.

Popular Unity’s bad performance and KKE’s ambiguities on similar issues (and their declining support in the polls) are very worrying signs for the future. It means that at the moment there is no strong left alternative to the troika’s agenda in Greece, ready to steer the country if (or should we say when?) the new government will fail to convince its voters that the bailout was the “lesser evil”.

And of course the resonance of this defeat reaches well beyond the boundaries of Greece. Tsipras’ victory is also a serious blow to the repositioning of a radical left throughout Europe (especially southern Europe) towards a clear alternative to the undemocratic rule of technocracy.

Given the good performance of the neo-nazis in Greece and the general rise of far right fundamentalism throughout Europe, it is a rather disturbing fact that the most vocal and growing opposition to technocratic rule comes from chauvinist xenophobic movements.

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One response to “Why was the anti-bailout left defeated in the Greek elections?

  1. If they had explained what the plan was in detail they would have fared even worse. See my article in The Conversation to get some idea of what they were after https://theconversation.com/why-leaving-the-euro-is-back-on-the-agenda-in-the-greek-election-47601

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