2nd EURO MEDITERRANEAN MEETING OF LEFT PARTIES
(10-12 DECEMBER 1999)
MARCO CONSOLO (INTERNATIONAL DEPARTMENT)
PARTITO DELLA RIFONDAZIONE COMUNISTA – ITALY
Dear comrades, dear friends,
first of all let me thank sincerously AKEL for this important moment of dialogue.
After the war against Yugoslavia, nothing is anymore like it was before. This war achieved its goals, even if they were not declared.
1) During the celebration of the 50″‘ anniversary of NATO in Washington, NATO decided to be the new police of the world. All the governments which belong to NATO (included the Italian one) officially decided that NATO can intervene out of their borders, without any U.N. decision.
2) U.N. are substituted by G7 or G8, the real decision place. The Security Council has been transformed in a body that just say yes to decision taken in the G7, the place in which the political mediations are built.
So NATO and G7 are becoming the real government of the world. Both are dominated by the USA and, at the same time, they represent the interest of what we could call “global capitalism”.
The USA hegemony must not be confused with the dominion of north American capitalism versus or above the European capitalism. The competition is within globalization, in the framework of god-market. The European governments accepted the war as a ground of construction of NATO and G7 real government. They did not build their own initiative in the Balkans, even if some of them (for example the Italian one) would have had certain interest in a concrete stability in the area. But the USA hegemony, in a framework of a strong hierarchy, was the winner.
3) We must not underestimate the ideological framework, the so-called “humanitarian war'”. ” This is going to be the characteristic of the new millennium’s wars. Human rights, the battle formally against drug-traffic (like, for example, in Colombia), defending children or something else that can come out of the hat.
This is the “media challenge” of the future to which the left must learn to deal with in a creative way. The ideological manipulation guaranteed the consensus of the populations in most countries, especially in Europe. In Italy, Rifondazione Comunista was the only political party of the left clearly against the aggression and we succeeded in building up mass demonstrations in the streets and in front of NATO bases (like Aviano), from where the airplanes were flying to bomb Yugoslavia.
In Italy, slogans like “humanitarian emergency”, “peace mission”, “the need to use strength to. defend the weak people”, “the war against the evil”, “just and fair war”, have been the “leit motiv” of D’Alema government, the same one that sold comrade Ocalan to the turkey regime, to make dirty business with weapons selling. It’s a process that started in 1991 with the Gulf war, to which the left is still unprepared to deal with at a global level. Again, I repeat, it’s one of our mayor tasks.
4) Neo-liberalism really is the 4″‘ world war against humanity. Its pillars are:
• G7 or G8 as the political decision-making place
• The financial institutions, such as IMF, World Bank
• WTO not just to regulate the unjust trade relations, but also vital aspects of life such as quality of food, health, investments, public contracting, etc.
• NATO as armed arm against those who resist
But we think that what happened in Seattle (we participate at the demonstration with a small delegation) is a bell—ring to all of us. The challenge is to link the fragmented sectors hit by the new attempts of the so called “global rules”. The collapse of the beginning of the negotiations means that we must double our efforts towards a stronger co-ordination of the left and progressive forces around the world.
The introduction of a tax on short terms capital speculation movements (like the Tobin Tax), on a wide scale, could implement the idea of the possibility of a control of capital speculation. Together with the proposal to cancel the foreign debt, starting with the poorest countries, represent two concrete proposals.
5) On Euro-Mediterranean level. lt’s not enough to give our solidarity to the political solution of the Cyprus issue, or to Palestine, Kurds, Yugoslavian people or to the Saharawi. Of course we will do it. But we must go further. We support strongly the idea to organize on permanent basis a dialogue within the left.
While the bourgeoisie has clear planes (starting from the Barcelona Conference in 1995) to create a sort of NAFTA, a free-trade zone in this area, the left is still with weak proposal. We must study and analyze possible alternatives, an economic plan to really integrate our economies, against structural adjustment programs, avoiding the possibility of a migration and commercial war within the poors, maybe supporting it on nationalistic bases.
We think that there is a political space for left regional policy to be filled on the base of a potential and possible economic integration of the two sides of this beautiful sea of hope. Multilateralism versus bilateralism which is the concrete practice of the EU in its relations with the south side of the Mediterranean.
But to win this battle, we feel the necessity to get organize on regional levels, like Pedro Marcet of the Spanish IU and the Portuguese comrade were proposing. I am thinking about the left in the Balkans, and the left in North Africa.
It’s urgent, it’s vital to do it on programmatic bases (as we are trying to do on European scale not on ideological terms) to act concretely on a global level.
We do have hope in this process, but we need to organize it.
Thank you for your attention.