Why did the Greek left fail in government in 2015? (pt. 1) The Economic crisis radicalizes Greece

Divided we fall — s01e08, w/ Pat Byrne

We’re resuming the Divided We Fall series, in which Boyan Stanislavski and Pat Byrne discuss the problems of the contemporary left and why it keeps losing on almost every front. What is the problem with the left, and why is it so?

Today we bring up an example of a major failure of the European left that occurred in Greece six years ago. We carefully examine, in three parts, how SYRIZA, led at the time by Alexis Tsipras, failed to deliver on their basic promises, which had earned them widespread support and a massive majority in parliament.

2015 appeared to be a breath of fresh air for Europe’s left. After years of austerity, there emerged to be a chance for a consistent leftist party to take power. The eyes of the entire left were fixed on Greece, where the SYRIZA party and its leader, Alexis Tsipras, were on their way to assuming power and confronting the so-called Troika (IMF, ECB, and European Commission), which was strangling the country’s economy and demanding shock therapy and austerity on steroids. There were high hopes! Unfortunately, those expectations were dashed.

Within a few weeks, SYRIZA’s leadership caved in to the demands of European and international banks. The European left’s big dream had come to an end.

What happened, and why did it happen? What were the causes of this catastrophic defeat? What are the lessons that the left should take away from these events?

This and more can be found in the first of three parts of our discussion of Greece and SYRIZA. Today, we will discuss the radicalization of Greek society, as well as the process and circumstances that led SYRIZA to power.

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