MERA25 Greece calls for joint anti-war action by Greek Left parties

In the wake of the unfolding humanitarian tragedy and the grave threat to peace following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, MeRA25’s Central Committee has voted in favour of the following resolution:

 

The road to peace: A neutral Ukraine

For MeRA25 the one and only issue at the moment is to stop the war. Russian troops must withdraw and peace must return to Ukraine after years of civil, and now interstate, war.

The only way towards peace is a binding agreement between Washington and Moscow to commit to the neutrality of Ukraine and the simultaneous cessation of the Russian invasion. Therein lies the interest of the citizens of Ukraine, not in a great power play. Ukraine had committed to neutrality until the political anomaly of 2014, at which point the country’s intention to join NATO was incorporated into the Constitution by the successor state, signifying the moral complicity of the US/NATO and the EU in Putin’s crimes today. The principles of collective and mutual security (OSCE Istanbul 1999, OSCE Astana 2010) must be respected, if peace is to be a realistic possibility.

Having chosen to blindly follow NATO, the EU has failed for a second time to fulfill its founding promise to the people of Europe: peace and the absence of war on our continent. As for sanctions, it is naive to believe that they can act as a deterrent without incurring an unbearable parallel cost to the citizens of the states that impose them.

President Putin’s illegal and inhumane military invasion of Ukraine is not a novel concept. Progressive citizens do not forget that international law and human rights have always been instrumentalised at will by the strongmen of today. The bombs dropped on Ukraine do not erase memories of what happened in Belgrade, Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Libya, Cyprus and various other places.

Finally, while the entire planet is hoping for peace, fringe voices are calling for an expansion of the war. Unfortunately, these include the Prime Minister of Greece Kyriakos Mitsotakis calling for “an EU and NATO response equivalent to the unprecedented Russian provocation”, thus appearing more NATO-like than NATO.

Meanwhile, everyone now understands that the transformation of Greece into a vast American military base (adding to those in Souda, Alexandroupolis, Litochoro, Stefanovikeio and Neorion) – planned by SYRIZA and implemented by New Democracy – is a truly dangerous development for our country. MeRA25’s parliamentary group has voted against, and will continue to vote against, any expansion of NATO plans.

The only way Russia will accept a ceasefire and withdraw its troops is if US/NATO and the West as a whole guarantee Ukraine’s neutrality, as they did in the case of Finland during the Cold War. Those who put the interests of Ukrainian citizens above the interests of both NATO and the Western and Eastern oligarchs who profit from this war should agree to this solution. We have no right to forget that, while people die in Ukraine and the poorest citizens of Europe struggle to cope with rising prices, arms dealers, energy cartels, bankers and, of course, the military-industrial complex in the US and Russia are making a killing. This is why the anti-war movement and the movement in favour of workers and the lower middle class are, at the end of the day, one and the same.

Stop the war now: we call for a neutral Ukraine, the withdrawal of Putin’s army, no military involvement of NATO, Greece or the EU. Peace on our continent!

 

The following day, MeRA25 Secretary Yanis Varoufakis addressed the following letter to the leaders of SYRIZA-PA and KKE, the two Greek left parliamentary parties:

 

Athens, February 28 2022

Alexis Tsipras,

President of the Coalition of the Radical Left – Progressive Alliance

 

Dimitris Koutsoumbas,

General Secretary of the Communist Party of Greece

 

Dear President,

Dear General Secretary,

 

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine confronts us with two interrelated responsibilities:

  • To defend a people from the barbaric invasion of the troops of Putin’s regime
  • To prevent the threat to Greece posed by the choice of the Mitsotakis government to do whatever Washington and NATO dictate

At this juncture, at a time when the warmongers in the West and the East are winning by invading, dividing and disorienting people, I believe that we have an obligation to coordinate our anti-war actions in a twofold direction:

  • Immediate end to the war and withdrawal of Russian troops under an international agreement that will allow the people of Ukraine to live freely in an independent, neutral, and democratic Ukraine
  • Removal of US military bases from Greece, which render our country and our people a target of foreign powers, without contributing anything to the country’s defence against real external threats

With this letter, I call you to jointly coordinate our actions, guided by our internationalist duty towards the people of Ukraine, the people of Europe and, of course, the security of our citizens. Such coordination will, I believe, resonate strongly in the progressive realm within and beyond Greece.

 

I remain at your disposal,

 

Yanis Varoufakis

MeRA25 Secretary

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