Thursday, October 15, 2009

Elections in Greece

Elections in Greece
Socialist Win Big; Communists Maintain Parliamentary Seats and Vote.

Mike Tolochko

With right wing/conservative politicians winning elections in Germany, France and Italy, the experience in Greece could be a little different.

National political elections took place in Greece on October 4th,  2009.   The main focus of the elections by the press in Greece and around the world was the resounding win of the Social Democratic Party, the PASOK.   The N.D., Conservative Party, the incumbent political party took a distant second.  

The third political party in the election was the KKE, the Greek Communist Party.  They maintained their percent of vote from previous years and, also their MPs in the Greek Parliament.   Their 7.54% vote turned into 21 Members of Parliament.

The Greek Parliament has 300 members.  

There was a very large turnout to vote.   In total 7,044,479 people voted, that is 71% of the population.  In the U.S. the actual number of voters as a percent of the general population is less than 30%.    

The Votes were the following:

PASOK (Social Democrat)         43.92%   160 MPs
N.D. (Conservative)                    33.48%     91 MPs
KKE (Communist)      7.54%     21 MPs
LAOS (Neofascists)      5.63%     15 MPs
SYRIZA ("Left")      4.60%     13 MPs

The vote of the LAOS, the neofascists, was seen  as very worrisome.    An ultra-left party received 4.6% of the vote.   

The KKE see both of the major parties as essentially the same in basic issues.   Both major parties take the same basic political and economic, neo-liberal positions.  They share the same anti-people positions on health, education, social security and privatizations.   And, in fact, that following political and personal scandals these take turns winning elections.   

They govern in turns since 1974

1974-1981 conservatives,
1981-1989 social democrats,
1989-1993 conservatives,
1993-2003 social democrats,
2003-2009 conservatives.

Both major neo-liberal parties control all newspapers, TV channels and electronic media.
They cooperate closely with the embassies of the USA, Germany, etc.

The KKE has its own television, radio and newspaper.

The WFTU General Secretary George Mavrikos was reelected member of the
parliament with the Communist Party of Greece.    He was elected in a working-class suburb with 34,027 votes.


Children of Hiroshima Appeal to President Obama

Coming on the heels of the International Disarmament and anti Nuclear War meetings in Mexico City, September, 2009, a special New York Times Full Page Appeal to US President Obama was made by the No Nuke Network: Students of Hiroshima Against Nuclear Weapons.  

The final working document of the Conference strongly encouraged participants to more effectively mount local demonstrations against nuclear weapons.   The year 2010 has a nunmber of national and interantinal mass demobstartions, planned.  The focus of the leadership was direct energy toward President Barak Obama of the U.S,, and , UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown.    Brown has drawn the ire for his insistence of pushing the nuclear Trident.  

The Appeal Says:    "Dear President Obama,  the Children of the world have a dream….."

The Full Page NY Times Appeal is on Page 9 of the Business Section.

The Appeal says:

"Dear President Obama,

"We are Junior high and senior high school students in Hiroshima Japan.  Like Children everywhere, we want to live in a peaceful world.  We want our own children, and their children, to live in peaceful world, too.

"Because our home is Hiroshima, we understand the importance of peace.  We understand how quickly everything you love can be lost forever.  Parents, children, relatives, friends, schoolmates, homes, businesses even dreams themselves.

"Recently we formed a group. Our group is called the "No Nuke Network:  Students of Hiroshima against Nuclear Weapons."   Our dream is to see nuclear weapons abolished from the world so that children of all nations, and children of generations to come, will never face the horror of nuclear war.

"Mr. President, we know you have the same dream. And we believe your efforts as the leader of the United States can help abolish these awful weapons.  We may be young, but we are determined to support you, as may others are around the world in realizing this dream.

"This is why we invite you, very sincerely, to visit Hiroshima on day soon.  By seeing first hand how terrible nuclear weapons truly are, as we as the passion for peace of our citizens, we believe you would be deeply inspired to do everything possible to eliminate these weapons from our earth.

"In the meantime, we will be folding paper cranes for you.  As you may know, the origami crane is a symbol of peace.  Our goal is to fold more paper cranes than the roughly 23,000 nuclear weapons now in the world.  W hope the cranes will offer you further inspiration.

"Thank you for reading our letter, Mr. President.   We do hope you will consider visiting Hiroshima.  It would be a great honor to welcome to our city and join hands for a peaceful world.

"Respectfully, No Nuke Network:  Students of Hiroshima Against Nuclear Weapons"

2010 and 2020

Watch for a dramatice incrase in demonstrations for Peace, Disarmament and anti-Nuclear war in 2010.  A few national and international demonstrations are being planning.    The goal for a full nuclear disarmament by 2020.

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