Guardian journalist Owen Jones has asked if it is time for the left to abandon the European Union. Greece’s leftist party Syriza appears to answer with a resounding “No”.
The fierce negotiations between the Greek government and its eurozone partners go beyond the question of debt to different visions of Europe’s future. The refusal of the Greek government to prepare serious plans for a return to the drachma, and its determination to persist in eurozone negotiations, highlights the belief that the level of progressive struggle is, in this part of the world, the European level.
Why is this? And is it still the case following the return of a harsh memorandum and talk of defeat and capitulation?
There is no doubt that the result of the negotiations is not a good result. The agreement is economically recessive and democratically shameful, as the trending hashtag #ThisIsACoup underscored. But the masks have now fallen, and the structures and legitimacy of eurozone 'governance' are broken.
The question to pose now is not only what should Syriza or Greece do, but above all what should be done to relaunch a struggle for a democratic and just Europe. Can the struggle of Greece be the catalyst of a wider European popular mobilisation?
These are some of the questions that we discussed in Athens in this episode of #TalkReal. With Costas Douzinas, acclaimed Greek intellectual close to Syriza; Margarita Tsomou, Greek performer and commentator based in Berlin; Jerome Roos, writer and founder of Roar magazine; and Srecko Horvat, Croatian philosopher and member of the board of European Alternatives.