For many Greeks, Orthodox Easter is a chance to see friends and family, to eat good food or to worship. But for the neo-Nazis in Golden Dawn, who only recently made the switch from “Hellenic” paganism to a professed love for Christianity, it has been an opportunity for propaganda. Last Thursday, the party made headlines with its attempt to stage a “Greeks-only” food distribution in Athens’s Syntagma square. The next day, when Athenians were driving back to home towns and villages, Golden Dawn members held open motorway toll booths – which have become a symbolic point of resistance against the rising cost of living in the wake of austerity – so cars could pass for free. Read the rest of this entry »
Session 01 10:00 – 12.00
Chaired by Godofredo Pereira
Costas Douzinas “Space, time and forms of resistance in Athens”
Aristide Antonas “Archipelago of Protocols”
Response: Yannis Stavrakakis
Session 02 12:30 – 14.30
Chaired by Charles Rice
Yannis Aesopos “Athens: Public Space and Crisis”
Orsalia Dimitriou “Whose commons?
Dilemmas of self-organization practices in public spaces and urban commons”
Platon Issaias “Τwo buildings and a movie: alienation, conflict and architectural form”
Response: Penelope Haralambidou
Session 03 16.00 – 17.30
Chaired by Lorenzo Pezzani
Maurizio Lazzarato “Debt and immaterial Labour”
Pier Vittorio Aureli “Less is Just Enough: Notes on Architecture and Asceticism”
Response: Ross Exo Adams
17.30 – 19.00
By Jerome Roos On May 7, 2013 http://www.roarmag.org
Christine Lagarde, the former French Finance Minister and current Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, was treated to an Occupy-style mic-check at the University of Amsterdam on Tuesday. During a lecture at the university’s economics department, a group of students rose up to interrupt (or rather start) the discussion, confronting the Fund’s chief with a number of inconvenient questions.
Attendees had been asked to send in questions before the “debate”, but the protesters were angry that their critical notes appeared to have been ignored. By standing up and submitting the IMF chief to a mic-check, they tried to get their concerns across anyway: “why is technocracy better than democracy?” one activist asked. Another asked Lagarde why the IMF submits developing countries to Western imperialism, to which the upper-class moderator tellingly responded that “we will not do that question”. Read the rest of this entry »
Across southern Europe resistance is taking on a new urgency. In Spain people are speaking of the start of ‘the real struggle’, while in Greece the term ‘civil war’ permeates the political climate. In both countries a frightening re-emergence of a dictatorship past seems to characterize the current historical moment as fascist ideologies become more acceptable and police tactics become more pre-emptive and militarized. These two trends emerging together, the rise of far right ideologies and pre-emptive militarized policing, indicate a shift in the discourses of legitimacy used by the state.
The tone has changed on the streets of southern Europe. People are growing increasingly impatient with the failure of their governments in the face of an ongoing economic crisis. For more than a month people have been organizing massive street protests outside the National Congress in Madrid. The “rodeo el congresso” actions began on 25th September 2012 and were quickly met with police brutality and a police force that clearly felt entitled to act some ways which were shocking even the veterans of the struggle against Franco’s dictatorship (for example, entering a public train station in full riot gear and beating random passengers – see video). The images of police violence went viral with millions of hits in just a few days. Instantly, plans were hatched for a strong response and the following day tens of thousands of people flooded the streets in front of congress and across Spain. A call went out for a national day of action on 29th September. The national day of action quickly turned into an international day of action as people all across Europe took to the streets. Read the rest of this entry »
Case file against Golden Dawn MP to be submitted to parliament
The public prosecutor’s office is to forward to parliament a case file against Golden Dawn MP Yiorgos Yermenis following an attempted assault on Athens Mayor Yiorgos Kaminis. The Golden Dawn MP’s parliamentary immunity must be lifted before he can be charged with verbal assault and attempted bodily harm. Yermenis – also known as Kaiadas – on Thursday attempted to assaulted Kaminis inside a municipal stall, after the mayor successfully stopped a Greeks-only food handout on Syntagma square by the extreme-right party.
Kaminis’ bodyguards intervened to block the punch but a 12-year-old girl was injured in the stall, which was located around 100 metres from the Golden Dawn headquarters. Yermenis also reached for a gun in the incident.
Greeks are becoming increasingly vocal in their disgust at the presence of fascists on their political scene
The first news comes from Eurobarometer: in November 2012 the percentage of those who tend “not to trust” Europe is 56% in France, 59% in Germany, 69% in the UK, 53% in Italy – almost doubled compared to 2007, and three times higher in Spain where it reaches 72%.
The second news come from the IMF: in 2013 the euro area will be in recession: minus 0,3%, after a fall that in 2012 was twice as much. While all eyes are on the difficult making of the new Italian government, the third news comes from Berlin: in the next elections in September 2013 a new political force will appear, Alternative für Deutschland, populist and anti-Europe, demanding a return to national currencies. It may not pass the 5% threshold for representation in Parliament, but it will take votes away from the ruling coalition; chancellor Angela Merkel is now likely to lose more from a continuation of the austerity orthodoxy – now hitting the German economy too – rather than from easing up on spending cuts. Read the rest of this entry »
as a response to the open letter from women from Halkidiki, who are struggling against destructive gold mining in Halkidiki, Greece (I attach the open letter)
Please sign and share!
posted at http://www.unhcr.gr
The present report consists of two parts: First, the quantitative and qualitative findings of recording incidents of racist violence, through interviewing victims, by organizations participating in the Racist Violence Recording Network during 2012; and, second the Network’s positions on state responses and initiatives to combat racist crimes, including the adoption or amendment of relevant legislation or initiatives to do so.
During the period January-December 2012, the Racist Violence Recording Network documented, through interviews with victims, 154 incidents of racist violence, of which 151 were committed against refugees and migrants and 3 against European citizens (1 Romanian, 1 Bulgarian and 1 Greek).
Location of incidents: 107 incidents occurred within the geographical area of the Municipality of Athens, and particularly in areas of the city centre, such as Aghios Panteleimonas, Attica Square, America Square and other areas around Omonia Square, while 23 incidents were recorded in the broader area of Attica prefecture. Moreover, 13 incidents occurred in Patras, 3 in Corinth, while 3 incidents recorded in Igoumenitsa and Evros have occurred in detention centers. Finally, incidents have also taken place in Rhodes, Chios, Konitsa and Nea Manolada Ilias. Read the rest of this entry »
Cure the disease and kill the patient – Labour rights in Greece after 3-years of Austerity
Tuesday 14 May 2013
5.30 – 7.30pm at the UCL Faculty of Laws
- Dr Aristea Koukiadaki (Lecturer in Employment Studies, University of Manchester);
- Dr Lefteris Kretsos (Senior Lecturer in Employment Relations, University of Greenwich);
- Dr Giuseppe Casale (Director, ILO Department of Labour Administration);
- Colm O’Cinneide (Reader in Laws, UCL; Vice-President of the European Committee of Social Rights)
Findings are ‘much worse than we imagined,’ researcher says
In one of the most detailed studies of its kind, a team of Greek and U.S. researchers have vividly chronicled the harmful public health impacts of the economic austerity measures imposed on Greece’s population in the wake of the global economic crisis.
Writing in today’s [Thursday, April 18] American Journal of Public Health, the researchers cite data showing the economic recession and subsequent austerity policies in Greece have led to a sharp deterioration of health services and health outcomes.
Researchers at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki in Greece and the University of New Mexico in the United States studied current data on economic and social conditions, utilization of health services, and health outcomes.
They found that key public health indicators declined in tandem with the recession and austerity policies that reduced public services.
For example, between 2007 and 2009, suicide and homicide mortality rates among men increased by 22.7 percent and 27.6 percent, respectively. Mental disorders, substance abuse, and infectious diseases showed worsening trends.
Despite deteriorating health conditions, cutbacks occurred in government financing of public services, as the Ministry of Health’s total expenditures fell by 23.7 percent between 2009 and 2011.
Meanwhile, due to unemployment and loss of personal income, patients decreased their use of private medical facilities, and utilization of already-stressed public inpatient and primary care services rose by 6.2 percent and 21.9 percent, respectively, over a two-year period.
Dr. Elias Kondilis, lead author of the study and a researcher at Aristotle University, commented from London, “We were expecting that these austerity policies would negatively affect health services and health outcomes, but the results were much worse than we imagined.”
Based on their findings, the authors criticize austerity policies that are likely to cause deteriorating health conditions in other European countries and in the United States.
The U.S.-based researcher on the team, Dr. Howard Waitzkin, distinguished professor emeritus of sociology and medicine at the University of New Mexico, said: “The policies of cutbacks currently proposed in the United States for Medicare and Social Security will lead to similar devastating effects on health services and outcomes. Instead of austerity policies, we need increased public sector spending to stimulate our failing economy and to protect the health of our people.”
In contrast to the Greek experience, the authors point to several Latin American countries that have resisted demands to reduce public investments in health services. Such policies, they argue, have led to improved economic and health indicators.
The senior researchers of the study were Dr. Howard Waitzkin on the U.S. side and Dr. Alexis Benos in Greece. Both are readily available for comment.
“Economic crisis, restrictive policies, and the population’s health and health care: The Greek case,” Elias Kondilis, M.D., Ph.D., Stathis Giannakopoulos, M.D., Ph.D., Magda Gavana, M.D., Ph.D., Ioanna Ierodiakonou, M.D., Ph.D., Howard Waitzkin, M.D., Ph.D., and Alexis Benos, M.D., Ph.D., American Journal of Public Health, April 18, 2013 (online ahead of print).
A copy of the EMBARGOED manuscript of the study is available to media professionals upon request.
Physicians for a National Health Program is a nonprofit research and education organization of more than 18,000 doctors who advocate for single-payer national health insurance, an improved Medicare for all. Dr. Howard Waitzkin is a founding member of PNHP; Dr. Alexis Benos spoke to PNHP’s Annual Meeting in San Francisco in October. PNHP had no role in funding or otherwise supporting the study described above. To speak with a physician/spokesperson in your area, visit http://www.pnhp.org/stateactions or call (312) 782-6006.