ON MONDAY in the House of Commons, ex-Labour Home Secretary Jack Straw rounded on the government stating: ‘Instead of sheltering behind complacent language and weasel words that we should not speculate, the government should recognise that this Eurozone cannot last. It is the responsibility of the British government to be open with the British people now about the alternative prospects. Since the euro in its current form is going to collapse, is it not better that that happens quickly rather than it dying a slow death?’
Straw, hardly a revolutionary, is advocating a quick death for the Eurozone, the single currency and the European Union.
From a bourgeois point of view, such a death will leave the situation free for an enraged German bourgeoisie to claim that it has been betrayed, and to fight it out with France and the UK, reigniting the struggle over which ruling class is to dominate Europe, carrying on from where Hitler left off.
Straw’s statement is recognition of the fact that the bourgeoisie is unable, in the period of the death agony of capitalism, to resolve any of its contradictions in order to unite Europe.
The bourgeoisie even in its revolutionary youth was unable through Napoleon to unite Europe through force of arms. Then in the period of its growing senility it was unable to defeat the October Revolution and unite Europe through Nazi barbarism.
Now, the effort to unite Europe through diplomacy from above, driven by the European Central Bank, has collapsed in a way that will bring the European bankers and capitalists to their knees.
It was Leon Trotsky who dealt with this question in his book ‘The Third International After Lenin’, where he wrote the following:
‘Needless to say Lenin rejected the possibility that a capitalist United States of Europe could be realised. This was also my approach to the question when I advanced the slogan of the United States of Europe exclusively as a prospective state form of the proletarian dictatorship in Europe.
‘I wrote at that time: “A more or less complete economic unification of Europe accomplished from above through an agreement between capitalist governments is a utopia. Along this road matters cannot proceed beyond partial compromises and half measures.
“But this alone, an economic unification of Europe, such as would entail colossal advantages both to the producer and the consumer and to the development of culture in general, is becoming a revolutionary task of the European proletariat in its struggle against imperialist protectionism and its instrument – militarism.” ’
Today Greece, Ireland, Portugal and Spain are under the hammer of the European Central Bankers.
The EU has decided that Greece must adopt the most severe austerity measures at once, before it is willing to ask the commercial lenders to roll over their debts to allow the Greek government to carry on governing for a little longer, while it advances more bail-out cash.
However, the Greek working class is threatening revolution in the event that such savage cuts are attempted to its vital interests, solely to preserve the European Union of capitalists and bankers.
Meanwhile, the Fitch credit ratings agency has said that if commercial lenders do roll over their loans to Greece, it will still deem the country to be in ‘default’.
With the German, French and UK banks deep in Greek debt to the tune of 56bn, 33bn and 14bn euros the Greek crisis is set to become a European catastrophe with the most revolutionary implications.
The Greek workers are leading the way but the workers of Portugal, Spain, Ireland, the UK and the other EU states are not too far behind.
We are set to see an explosion of the European socialist revolution. Now is the time to build sections of the Fourth International all over Europe to lead the European socialist revolution to its victory which will be concluded by the establishment of the Socialist United States of Europe.