The broad left party question after Syriza

by Mick Armstrong • Published 12 January 2016

The abject capitulation of the leadership of Syriza to the austerity agenda of the Greek and the broader European ruling class represents a significant setback both for the Greek working class and for the struggle against austerity across the whole of Europe. Greece has, over the last six years, been a vital centre of struggle on which the attention of the international left has rightly been focused. For this reason it is essential that Marxists begin the task of drawing an honest balance sheet of these developments. In this article I will primarily focus on one aspect of the Greek experience – how revolutionary socialists should have related to Syriza – and draw out the broader lessons for the debate on the international left about the broad left party question.

There have been two counterposed but erroneous responses on the international left to the capitulation of Alexis Tsipras. The first and the most common response is to argue that Tsipras had little or no alternative and that consequently, while it is very unfortunate, the capitulation was justified and involved no betrayal. This has been the approach of a whole variety of left wing political currents, including the leaderships of Podemos in Spain, Die Linke (the Left party) in Germany and Communist Refoundation in Italy, as well as leading autonomists such as Toni Negri. The Canadian socialists Leo Panitch and Sam Gindin have been two of the strongest proponents of this position on the English-speaking left.[1] Pablo Iglesias, the general secretary of Podemos, was typical of this dominant trend, declaring:

Alex’s principles are very clear, but the world and politics have to be seen in light of the relation of forces… What the Greek government did is sadly, the only thing it could have done.[2]

But there definitively was another alternative. That was for the Syriza government to attempt to rally its working class supporters to actually fight for the anti-austerity program on which it was originally elected to office. And that was a real possibility after the decisive No vote in the referendum on the austerity memorandum proposed by the European authorities. Instead, the leadership of Syriza around Alexis Tsipras not only deserted the battlefield, but even worse, it became the instrument of the Greek and European bourgeoisie for justifying and imposing austerity measures that will inflict untold suffering on millions of Greek people.

The argument that there is no alternative to neoliberalism and austerity is precisely the argument that the leaders of the Labor and social democratic parties all over the world have used for the last 40 years to justify cutbacks. It is exactly this approach that has alienated and disillusioned millions of working class supporters of parties like PASOK in Greece and opened up the space for the rise of Syriza.

So what on earth is the point of working class people putting time and effort into building a new left party to replace the traditional Labor/social democratic parties if once elected to office that same party totally reverses its policy and enforces even harsher austerity measures than the old party?

The scale of the capitulation by Tsipras compares unfavourably even to the record of some of the wretched old social democratic parties. The archetypal betrayal was that of the German Social Democratic Party (SPD) when it voted for war credits at the outbreak of World War I. But the SPD faced the imminent threat of military rule, the imprisonment of its leadership and the destruction of the million-strong party and the associated trade union movement it had so laboriously built up over decades. Tsipras faced no such immediate threat.

Because of the Stalinist and reformist politics that dominated it, Salvador Allende’s left wing Popular Unity government in Chile made substantial political errors that opened the way for General Pinochet’s military coup that overthrew it in 1973. But at least Allende resisted the coup and died fighting. Tsipras risked no such fate.

Here in Australia, the Whitlam Labor government was overthrown in the Kerr coup of 11 November 1975 because the ruling class did not consider Labor to be reliable enough in imposing austerity. Similarly, at the height of the Great Depression of the 1930s – an even worse crisis than the current one in Greece – the NSW Labor government, headed by the right wing populist demagogue Jack Lang, was dismissed in a coup by the state governor. Alexis Tsipras capitulated well short of being dismissed from office and used his prestige as the leader of a left party to push through measures that the discredited old parties would have had great difficulty imposing.

The abject capitulation of the Syriza leadership – without even an attempt to rally its working class supporters for a serious fight – resulted in an extremely dispiriting and disorienting defeat from which the whole movement against austerity in Greece is going to have to be rebuilt. The demoralising impact of the capitulation was compounded by the fact that it came to most workers as a bolt from the blue almost immediately after they had overwhelmingly voted no to the proposed memorandum of the European authorities.

To be defeated after giving battle is one thing. Workers and the left can learn important positive lessons for the future from a determined struggle that pushes things to the limits. Heroic resistance like that of the Paris Commune or the Warsaw ghetto uprising can leave a lasting legacy that inspires future generations of the oppressed and exploited. But to meekly and passively surrender to the power of capital without any serious attempt to resist breeds resignation. It is absolutely corrosive of morale on our side. Much better an honourable defeat than a cowardly and base surrender.

There is an incredible amount of special pleading employed about the amount of pressure that the Tsipras government was under while in office to excuse its ultimate total capitulation to the demands of the Greek and European bourgeoisie. However in retrospect it is very clear that the core elements of the deal were done well before Syriza took government. After the 2012 election results Syriza clearly was the government in waiting. The Greek bourgeoisie courted Tsipras. The old parties were discredited so they needed a new face to head the political establishment. Tsipras became their man.

Key deals were stitched up well before Syriza took office to ensure that sensitive ministerial posts controlling the military, the security apparatus, the police and so on were in the hands of “reliable” people parachuted in from outside the ranks of Syriza.[3] Similarly, a coalition with the ultra-conservative Independent Greeks (ANEL) was secretly negotiated before the elections as a sign of “good faith” to the bourgeoisie.

Abstain or engage?

The second erroneous response is to dismiss the whole Syriza experience out of hand and claim that Tsipras’ capitulation simply confirms that socialists should never have been actively involved in building Syriza nor campaigned for its election to government. In Greece the strongest proponents of this position were the ultra-sectarian, unreconstructed Stalinists of the Greek Communist Party (KKE); and in a somewhat less stridently sectarian form it was also essentially the position of the majority of the anti-capitalist coalition Antarsya. Outside Greece it was the standpoint of a variety of far left organisations including the British Socialist Workers Party (SWP), the leading organisation of the International Socialist Tendency (IST) whose Greek IST affiliate SEK is part of the Antarsya coalition, sections of the New Anti-Capitalist Party (NPA) in France and the international Morenoite current associated with the Argentine Socialist Workers Party (PTS).

This approach simply meant that a significant number of socialists abstained from one of the key arenas of political struggle in Greece – the fight between left and right inside Syriza itself. While for Marxists the broader class struggle in the workplaces and on the streets is of supreme importance, internal battles within left parties can at times be decisive, both for the direction of the class struggle and for the accumulation of the forces needed to forge a revolutionary party. It was after all the battles between left and right in the old social democratic parties in the immediate aftermath of the First World War that were central to the formation of Communist Parties in a whole string of countries.

To directly counterpose building strikes and radical movements in the streets as the alternative to a political intervention in a radical left party like Syriza is to lapse into a syndicalist or movementist error that fails to see the dialectical connections between the two.[4] The forces needed for a revolutionary party are not going to be accumulated simply by building mass movements and strikes; and conversely mass movements and strikes are ultimately not going to be successful in challenging capitalist rule without a mass revolutionary party being built. In the specific context of Greece, the retreat of the mass movement on the streets over the extended period leading up to the election of the Syriza government and during its first months in office made the battle within Syriza itself even more vital to the whole direction of Greek politics.

There was never any guarantee, of course, that the left inside Syriza would win that struggle or decisively change the course of events. The revolutionary forces were small and they faced a determined enemy in the form of the leading group around Tsipras, which in its struggle against the left in the party was prepared to go to any lengths to get its way. Previous traditions of party democracy were trashed and ultimately Tsipras blew Syriza apart in order to crush the growing opposition within its ranks to the third austerity memorandum. In all of this he had the rabid support of the mainstream media and the Greek and European establishments.

Moreover the fact that Syriza was never really a mass membership party on the scale of the old social democratic parties in their heydays – its membership peaked at around 30-35,000 – set a clear limit on the gains that revolutionaries could make. Nonetheless a few thousand more active left wing socialists undoubtedly would have helped shift the balance of forces; and it would have meant that when the crunch eventually came a stronger anti-austerity left party could have emerged from the wreckage of Syriza.

One of the main arguments advanced against revolutionaries joining Syriza is that given the political limitations of the Tsipras leadership, it was vital for revolutionaries to maintain their own independent organisation outside Syriza to help galvanise mass resistance to austerity, to argue against any backsliding by Syriza and to be an alternative pole of attraction if and when the Syriza leadership decisively sold out.

These arguments are not wrong in principle. The decision on whether or not revolutionaries join and help build a broad left party needs to be based on a strategic assessment of the concrete circumstances. If a serious revolutionary organisation of some substance (say 10-20,000 members) had existed in Greece that could mobilise a significant minority of the working class and win sufficient votes to gain representation in parliament, it is arguable that maintaining an independent organisation that engaged in united front work with Syriza would have been the correct approach.

However Antarsya was in no such position. It never had more than a few thousand members, and it could not galvanise a significant minority of workers in its own right to fight the betrayal of the Syriza leadership. This was reflected in the limited size of the protests on the streets after Tsipras’ capitulation and in the subsequent September 2015 elections, when Antarsya’s vote only went up 0.17 percent to 0.85 percent, insufficient to secure any representation in parliament. Antarsya failed to grow out of the whole experience. Indeed it lost around 20-25 percent of its membership, who split away and joined the newly formed Popular Unity party. By October 2015 Antarsya’s numbers were down from about 2,700 to a bit under 2,000. So by any practical measure Antarsya’s strategic approach was a decided failure. By way of contrast, the Red Network – initiated by the revolutionary group the Internationalist Workers Left (DEA) within Syriza and now in Popular Unity – was able to grow significantly.

But there is another point that cannot be omitted from the assessment. Antarsya was not a revolutionary organisation. It was an anti-capitalist coalition containing a variety of forces, not all of which were clearly revolutionary. Some of the component forces of Antarsya adhered to distinctly left nationalist positions which were overhangs of their origins in Greek Stalinism. One reflection of the heterogeneous composition of Antarsya is that some of those who left to join Popular Unity proved to be politically closer to the left nationalist politics espoused by sections of the Left Current majority of Popular Unity than to the revolutionary forces in Popular Unity grouped around the Red Network. They argued that there was a way out of the economic crisis within the framework of capitalism via market mechanisms and a return to the drachma.[5]

If revolutionaries were going to be part of a coalition including non-revolutionary forces, surely it made far more sense to be in the larger one, Syriza, which had the support of the majority of class conscious workers in Greece?

Unfortunately the majority of Antarsya compounded this error by failing to join the new anti-austerity party Popular Unity formed by the left opposition in Syriza (consisting primarily of the Left Current, the Red Network and various independents) after the capitulation of Tsipras. Popular Unity managed to attract a number of unaligned members of Syriza and some other leftists from outside Syriza, including about 700 former members of Antarsya, and by October 2015 had roughly 5,000 members. It could have been a more powerful pole of attraction to those workers shocked and dismayed by Tsipras’ capitulation if Antarsya as a whole had joined it.

In a bad setback, Popular Unity gained just 2.86 percent of the vote in the September elections, narrowly missing out on gaining representation in parliament. If Antarsya and Popular Unity had not competed against each other, there is little doubt that the anti-austerity left current would have gained a presence in the Greek parliament. This could then have been utilised as a vital platform for spurring on opposition to the implementation of the austerity measures of the third memorandum and regrouping the genuinely left wing forces.

An example of how to intervene

There was an alternative to either apologising for Tsipras’ capitulation or standing apart from the internal battles in Syriza. The approach that I want to defend is the necessity for revolutionaries to involve themselves both in building the broader struggle in the working class movement against austerity and intervening inside Syriza, which became a key political expression of that struggle. In particular I want to highlight the approach of DEA, the leading force in the Red Network, which was a very positive example of how revolutionaries should approach work in a broad left party – an example from which the left internationally can draw important lessons.

There is of course no formula for intervention in a broad party. Political circumstances vary significantly from country to country, and the exact tactics have to be concretely determined in each case. Myriad factors are involved, including the combativity of the working class, the degree of radicalism in society, the depth of the economic and broader social crisis, the size and weight of the revolutionary forces, the nature of the other forces you are working alongside and so on. Nevertheless, with all these caveats there is much to learn from the DEA experience.

DEA was in 2004 one of the founding organisations of Syriza, which was initially a coalition of various radical left currents – left reformists and semi-revolutionaries plus revolutionary Marxist organisations such as DEA. DEA operated openly as an organisation inside Syriza with its own publications, meetings, leadership bodies and so on. When Syriza was subsequently transformed into a united party in 2013, DEA came under intense pressure from the Tsipras leadership to dissolve its organisation. Despite threats of expulsion, DEA stood its ground and refused to dissolve. This was a vitally important decision.

Contrast this approach to the experience of the Maoist organisation KOE (Communist Organisation of Greece) which was initially one of the larger groups in Syriza with approximately 1,000 members – substantially stronger than DEA. KOE did decide to dissolve in 2013, at least formally, though it tried to keep some sort of organisation together. It ended up in a halfway house position and paid a huge price for this concession to the Tsipras leadership. It lost people in all directions, some to its right – including some well-known cadre who went with Tsipras when the crunch came. A minority of its supporters subsequently joined Popular Unity. Between two and three hundred of what is left of their demoralised and disoriented organisation left Syriza but did not join Popular Unity and simply abstained during the September 2015 elections.

One of the thorny questions that DEA had to confront was the call for a government of the radical left in 2012. DEA had not always supported raising this slogan. In an earlier period DEA had opposed it, as at that stage the proposal was being pushed by more conservative forces in Syriza that were looking for a coalition government with PASOK. By 2012 the situation was substantially different and the prospect of a radical left government independent of PASOK or other small centre left parties was a real prospect.

One criticism of the proposal for a left government by Marxists at the time was that the working class movement in Greece was neither strong nor radical enough to ensure that a left government adhered to its anti-austerity program, and that the revolutionary forces were not strong enough to stand up to reformists and the wavering elements in Syriza. There was undoubtedly a strong element of truth to this argument, and DEA acknowledged the risk involved. For socialists to have refused to take the risk would have meant removing themselves from the field where the battle was most intense in this period – within Syriza itself. It would have largely condemned them to irrelevancy in the face of the enormous upheavals shaking Greece and the surge of working class support for Syriza. The response of DEA was to intervene in both Syriza and the broader working class struggle and to fight like crazy to try to close the gap in the balance of forces.

In the initial months of the Syriza government, DEA was isolated in its determined stance against Tsipras’ right wing course. In the course of the two years leading up to the January 2015 elections, the level of mass struggle had significantly retreated from its previous high points. Then, with the election of the Syriza government and the subsequent round of negotiations with the troika around the debt, most workers were willing to give the new government the benefit of the doubt. Nonetheless DEA stuck to its guns and marked out its ground for the future. It was to be proved right and the Red Network was able to grow significantly when the situation opened up in the last phase of the Syriza government.

DEA did not take any positions in the Syriza government, nor other jobs that were being widely offered to MPs and leading Syriza members. It stood firm against the backsliding and compromising stance of the Tsipras leadership. DEA publicly opposed Syriza forming a coalition government with the right wing Independent Greeks immediately after the January 2015 elections. It opposed the Syriza government’s appointment in February of a former leader of the main bourgeois party New Democracy, Prokopis Pavlopoulos, as the new Greek president. It opposed the 20 February agreement reached by Tsipras and his then finance minister Yanis Varoufakis with the European leaders, which maintained the existing austerity memorandum.

During this period the Tsipras group pushed DEA very hard. Tsipras had already intervened to ensure that Maria Bolari, a DEA MP elected to parliament in 2012, was not re-elected in 2015. Tsipras pressured DEA to dissolve the Left Platform – the alliance between the Red Network in which DEA played a leading role and the Left Current (the left wing of Synaspismos, the largest component of Syriza that Tsipras led). Why? Because this alliance was radicalising the Left Current and beginning to pose a serious alternative to Tsipras. It was also radicalising the so-called Group of 53, the left wing of Tsipras’ faction.

DEA and the Red Network did not only express their consistent opposition to the rightward drift of the Syriza government in closed party meetings, but also in their public press and on their website, and most visibly in the parliament itself. Other sections of the left in Syriza objected to various elements of Tsipras’ rightward shift in internal party forums, at Central Committee meetings and so on, but for the sake of party unity did not vote against the government in parliament. In contrast the two Red Network MPs voted against Tsipras’ compromises. On the initial vote on the third austerity memorandum, the two Red Network supporters were the only two Syriza MPs to vote no, while other left MPs abstained. This was important in clearing a path to mobilise more opposition to the third memorandum both inside and outside Syriza. In the final vote 37 Syriza MPs voted no and a further seven abstained. Most of them went on to join the new left wing anti-austerity party Popular Unity.

The challenge of left reformism

A common aspect of the approach of those on the international left who backed Tsipras or tailed along behind him is a downplaying or outright denial of the importance of the difference between revolutionary Marxist politics and left reformism. This has taken various forms. Leo Panitch for example declared:

The question for the 21st century is not reform v revolution, but rather what kinds of reforms, with what kinds of popular movements behind them engaging in the kinds of mobilisations that can inspire similar developments elsewhere, can prove revolutionary enough to withstand the pressures of capitalism.[6]

When Tsipras went on the offensive against the left in the party and specifically DEA at the Syriza Congress in 2013, Simon Butler of the Socialist Alliance in Australia wrote:

I’ve read plenty of bombastic left commentary about the recent SYRIZA conference. Here is the political resolution adopted there, newly translated to English. It does not suggest to me that we can apply a schema that says there is such a clear division between reformists and revolutionaries.[7]

There are none so blind as those who will not see.

Similarly, Murray Smith, one of the most prolific writers in English on the broad party question, argued in June 2014 in response to my critique[8] of his approach: “The way Mick Armstrong divides Syriza into ‘non-revolutionary’ (the leadership that has taken Syriza to where it is today) and an opposition that is baptised ‘revolutionary’ is a caricature.”[9] Well, put to the test of practice on taking government, the utter capitulation of Tsipras and co. to the demands of big capital proved to be not a caricature, but rather a textbook case of reformist betrayal.

Previously Smith had written: “Rather than establishing an a priori cleavage between reformists and revolutionaries it is better to look at what anti-capitalist measures a left government should take and how to mobilise support for them, how to counter economic sabotage and political pressures from the right etc.”[10]

But as the case of Syriza so dramatically demonstrates, a left government can in no sense be relied on to defend working class interests and to enact progressive reforms. Revolutionaries and the advanced sections of the working class movement undoubtedly will need to mobilise to counter attacks from the right on a genuinely reforming left government. But just as importantly, they need to be in a position to defend themselves from any attacks by the very government that they have voted into office.

The bottom line is that the distinction between reform and revolution is not some outdated concept from a century ago. Far from the distinction being meaningless in advanced capitalist countries with well-established democratic institutions, as the likes of Murray Smith would have us believe, it is actually more relevant in such countries than it was in Russia in 1917. Reformism did not have deep roots in tsarist Russia, and Lenin’s Bolsheviks did not have to confront an entrenched trade union bureaucracy or a strongly established parliament-oriented reformist party. This meant that reformism was not a central problem that the Bolsheviks had to theorise about and confront politically; whereas in the West reformism in a myriad of forms has long been the overwhelmingly dominant current on the left and in the working class movement.

Revolutionaries need to be able to work alongside reformist forces in a non-sectarian way while pursuing common aims in the struggle against austerity, be it on the streets, within the trade unions or within a broad left party like Syriza. This is not a simple or straightforward task, and the exact tactics will vary considerably between united front work in a mass movement and constructive engagement with reformist forces in parties like Syriza, Podemos or Popular Unity. But in all these cases Marxists are simply digging their own graves if they are not fully aware of the sharp political differences that separate them from their reformist or semi-revolutionary temporary allies.

Others on the left accept that the differences between revolutionary and reformist politics still have some importance. But they argue that in the day to day work of a broad anti-austerity party these differences are not a central dividing line and that consequently revolutionaries don’t need a disciplined organisation with a cohered and committed membership and its own regular meetings to work out its political approach. It is sufficient in their view for Marxists to have some sort of network or loose association that promotes general Marxist ideas, conducts educational classes and so on, but is not an interventionist organisation with its own publications and cohered membership.

The differences between revolutionary and reformist politics are not, as some would argue, merely abstract theoretical or ideological differences that can be held in abeyance until the barricades go up. Example after example of things going terribly wrong – the Workers Party in Brazil, Communist Refoundation in Italy, the Scottish Socialist Party and now Syriza – graphically illustrate that these are vital differences that impact on a day to day basis on the whole orientation of any left party, whether in or out of government, and well short of the barricades going up. However the situation does become particularly acute when a left party wins office.

Various other arguments have been advanced that sowed confusion and disorientation on these issues. Typically there is an unwillingness to call a spade a spade. For example, the Canadian Marxist Paul Kellogg wrote a lengthy article in 2012 about why those on the left should not refer to Syriza as a left reformist party:

But adjectives such as “left reformist”, “accommodating” and “pro-European” can be quite unhelpful when it comes to understanding the political dynamics being unleashed by the new social facts taking shape on the European political landscape.[11]

To the extent that Kellogg was polemicising against those on the left who used “left reformism” simply as a term of abuse to justify in a quite sectarian fashion any positive engagement with Syriza, he had a point. However it remained the case that the core leadership of Syriza, as has been amply demonstrated by subsequent developments, was undoubtedly reformist. Indeed, in hindsight, the description of Alexis Tsipras and co. as left reformist seems overly generous.

For revolutionaries to downplay the importance of coming to a clear understanding of the reformist politics of the Syriza leadership and what that would lead to in practice could only undermine their capacity to intervene effectively to combat them, and in the worst case end up providing a cover for their betrayals, i.e. that Tsipras was simply forced by circumstances beyond his control to impose the third memorandum rather than it being the logical unfolding of his own reformist politics when faced by the challenge of government.

Furthermore we have to be clear that it is not just the Tsiprases of this world that revolutionaries have to know how to stand up to. There are political currents and prominent leaders who cover for the likes of Tsipras, those who waver in the middle and those who privately or within closed party circles oppose Tsipras’ betrayals but for the sake of party unity refuse to wage an open fight against them and appeal to the masses outside the party for support.

The Marxist response needs to contain two elements. Marxists need to understand and combat these political currents while at the same time seeking to influence and win over by patient explanation the rank and file members influenced by these ideas. So the whole approach of Marxists operating as some sort of loose network or halfway house organisation – rather than as a cohered, disciplined group that can debate out and implement its own clear open political orientation – is fatally flawed.

Over a century ago Parvus, in his preface of January 1905 to Trotsky’s pamphlet Before the Ninth of January, had some very good advice on how Marxists should relate to such contingent allies:

3) Do not conceal divergences of interest.
4) Pay attention to our ally as we would pay attention to an enemy.
5) Concern ourselves more with using the situation created by the struggle than with keeping an ally.[12]

This has been precisely the challenge that DEA in Greece has faced over the last decade. Working alongside other forces in a common political project entailed making some compromises on tactical questions; otherwise it would not have been possible to work together at all. However on the key questions of political principle and strategic orientation, DEA consistently took a clear stand. It came out publicly against the backsliding of Tsipras, and the two Red Network MPs were the only Syriza MPs to vote against the third memorandum when it first came into the parliament. Then, once the memorandum had been forced through, DEA broke decisively with Tsipras to play a leading role in the formation of the new anti-austerity party Popular Unity.


The issues associated with how revolutionaries should relate to broad left parties are not going to go away any time soon. The immediate demoralising impact of the abject failure of Syriza will be a serious setback for the likes of Podemos in Spain that uncritically associated themselves with the leadership of Syriza. Nonetheless the unrelenting neoliberal offensive of international capital and the total unwillingness of the traditional social democratic parties to stand up to it means that there will be repeated attempts to develop new political formations that can seem to offer the hope of an alternative.

So it is a priority that revolutionaries seriously come to grips with the challenges of how to relate successfully to these formations. The fact that the establishment of a mass revolutionary party is not on the immediate agenda anywhere in the world just underlines the importance of this issue. There have been far too many fiascos – Communist Refoundation in Italy, the Workers Party in Brazil, Respect in England, the Socialist Alliance in England, the Scottish Socialist Party, the Socialist Alliance in Australia, the list goes on and on – which have seriously damaged, if not wrecked, the socialist groups that were involved in them. Syriza also proved a failure, but at least from that experience we have the positive example of DEA, which intervened in a serious and principled way and was able to build, albeit modestly, the Red Network which is now better placed to play a prominent role in building Popular Unity. It is an experience that needs to be highlighted and rigorously studied.

Achcar, Gilbert 2005, “Marxists and Religion – Yesterday and Today”, International Viewpoint, spip.php?article622.

Armstrong, Mick 2014, “A critique of the writings of Murray Smith on broad left parties”, Marxist Left Review, 7, Summer.

Gindin, Sam and Leo Panitch 2015a, “Treating Syriza Responsibly”,

Gindin, Sam and Leo Panitch 2015b, “The Syriza Dilemma. What would constructive pressure on the Syriza government look like?”, Jacobin,

Kellogg, Paul 2012, “Greece in the eye of the storm (the Greek left, SYRIZA and the limits of the concept of ‘left reformism’)”, node/3109.

Lewis, Tom 2015, “Podemos and the Left in Spain, International Socialist Review, 98.

Milios, John 2015, “Austerity Isn’t Irrational”, Jacobin,

Ovenden, Kevin 2015, Syriza. Inside the Labyrinth, Pluto Press.

Smith, Murray 2013, “The real European left stands up”,

Smith, Murray 2014, “Broad left parties: Murray Smith replies to Socialist Alternative’s Mick Armstrong”,

Tietze, Tad 2015, “The Failed Strategy”, 2015/08/syriza-referendum-podemos-austerity/.

[1] Gindin and Panitch 2015a and 2015b.

[2] Quoted in Lewis 2015.

[3] Ovenden 2015, pp104-132.

[4] Tietze 2015 is but one example of this erroneous approach.

[5] For an explanation of why there are no nationalist solutions to the crisis, see Milios 2015.



[8] Armstrong 2014.

[9] Smith 2014.

[10] Smith 2013.

[11] Kellogg 2012.

[12] Quoted in Achcar 2005.

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