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Rosemarie Feger Member of the International Commission of the DKP
– German Communist Party
14th Meeting of IMCWP Beirut – Lebanon 22-25 November 2012
Dear Comrades We live in times of massive changes which show first signs of developing. Especially the massive production increases with the resulting severe over-accumulation have dramatically grown in den past 5 years, and we think that the present crisis is a transitional crisis or Great Crisis.
The changes mentioned refer to the forms of production, of exercising power, the relationship between capital and labour, the international balance of powers.
In the past 5 years, the ”crisis management“ of great capital and its political representatives has led to a deepening of the financial, economic, social and ecological crises and to a further dismantling of democracy.
In the main countries of capital, as well, working and living conditions have decisively changed in the past few years. The contradictions emerging from this process cannot be solved within the framework of the capitalist system.
In the EU countries, reactionary neoliberal politics of deregulation, privatisation and cutbacks of basic rights has been accelerated and finally cemented. At the same time, EU borders are massively barred against refugees. Furthermore, there is an increasingly aggressive war policy not only to the outside but also to the interior. The example of Greece makes especially clear how national parliaments are basically stripped of their power and how national sovereignty is being restricted.
I would shortly like to describe the situation in Germany. Imperialist Germany is the leading economic power within the EU. This was achieved, amongst others, by lowering real pay and “wage costs“ (already under the social-democrat government of Gerhard Schröder), by huge tax presents to the German industry, by massive austerity measures in social matters, education and health, by privatisation and so on. In Germany, the effects of the crisis are by far not as clear yet as in other countries, but in our rich country, poverty is growing in extended circles of the population, most of all, old age poverty will become a massive problem for large parts of the population in the near future.
The German economy lives on their export surpluses, and this is an essential factor which has led to the indebtedness of our neighbouring countries. Imperialist Germany is the pioneer of the reactionary, neoliberal, capitalist politics in Europe, which is being imposed by all means and which has already driven several states to economic ruin. The bailout “umbrellas” protect capital on the backs of the working class, our own, who have to pay the taxes to finance them, and the working class in our neighbouring countries, whose fundamental bases of live are being destroyed.
At the same time, our media unanimously declare the ”lazy“ Greeks, Italians, Spaniards etc. to be responsible for the crisis. This supports the ultra-reactionary and fascist parties, which appear in public ever stronger. Broad antifascist movements are massively hindererd by the state and criminalised by bans, surveillance, detentions and also by using violence. For one year an important issue has been the tight links between secret services and neo-Nazi organisations. Pretending to investigate into matters they have been financing Nazis acting as spies, many of them in leading positions, on the other hand they have been beating and murdering for years without the state interfering. More than 120 dead people result from this.
Another issue which the German public is hardly aware of is the growing militarisation of German foreign and domestic politics. The German government participates – completely against our constitution – in many wars in the world , hardly directly, as in Afghanistan, mostly indirectly , as in Iraq and lately against Syria. Furthermore, Germany is the third largest weapon exporter in the world, and they are expanding the system. Export regulations for weapons are being cut back , the slogan of the Peace Movement :”German weapons, German money kill all over the world” is more topical today than ever before. This very much suits the fact that first steps are now taken to make army activities to the interior lawful. According to experience from German history this has always been anathema and it reflects how deliberate and aggressive German politics have become.
In nearly the whole of Europe, protests and resistance are growing, people walk out onto the streets against class politics of the rulers. In these fights, the working class objectively is the decisive force. Positions criticising capitalism and anticapitalist attitudes are increasing.
In Germany, as well, everywhere protests, associations, actions have been developing in the past few years, people are becoming more sensitive, they march out onto the streets for their rights because they have come to recognize that they cannot trust “their” governments anymore. Many people were surprised by the fact how relentlessly the state is reacting. When policemen beat down “normal” citizens in a protest against the extention of Stuttgart Main Station, many people first realized that there really were opposing camps facing each other.
Resistance in our country still is not organized strongly enough, and in this situation we being Communists must help creating broad alliances whose actions can lead to change, to social and democratic progress.
Here, the class questions has always been at the centre of our considerations but this idea is hard to convey, in general, most Germans still hope for a positive change within the framework of capitalism.
Trade unions in Germany still are no fighting class organisations.
Dear Comrades, First in our own country, but beyond this, Communists must strengthen their international cooperation. This is, in fact, the reason why we have come together here.
The German Communist Party DKP supports all steps towards the gathering of social, trade union and political forces on a national and international level in order to be able to strongly and credibly challenge capitalism with a socialist alternative. We are realistic enough to orientate ourselves in the real conditions, the factual state of awareness and the life interests of the people and not in our own wishful thinking. We are only at the beginning of a long way, but we will go it together , this will not work without fierce discussions , but we hope we will always go for our common goal in solidarity.
We know: the best international solidarity consists in developing fights in our own countries as a contribution to international change of society towards Socialism. Thank you.