This article has been published in collaboration with Bilten. The following is an overview of a recent episode in the relentless war on social rights in Bulgaria. I will focus on the aborted reform of freight drivers’ work conditions as it presents us with a rare case of a clear internationalization of the extremely exploitative industrial relations prevalent in Bulgaria within the international freight sector. In 2017, during a trip to Eastern Europe, French President Emmanuel Macron drew attention to one of the obvious effects of the market integration of nations as distant and divergent in economic developme ..
Note from the LeftEast editors: In January 2018 Bulgaria has taken the presidency of the Council of the European Union for the first six months of 2018. Meanwhile Neonazis will still be marching the on the streets of Sofia in February to commemorate General Hristo Lukov: the head of the interwar Legion and Minister of War in the late 1930s. Known as a stark nationalist and anti-semite, he was killed by a partisan woman. The march that commemorates him combines nationalist, chauvinist, anti-communist and racist rhetorics. It is a feast of the international right extreme, whose members come to Bulgaria in big num ..
The following two-part interview with Joachim Becker,, professor of Economics and Business at Vienna University and deputy head of the Institute for International Economics and Development, was conducted by the Croatian activist and writer Domagoj Mihaljević. Mihaljević: For the time being, it seems the process of capital accumulation in Europe has been stabilized through policies of fiscal stability and structural reforms. In doing this, the central focus of European ruling classes was to secure the survival of monetary union at any cost necessary. In turn, this has made the fragmentation between the core and ..
Note from the LeftEast editors: As a part of a broader series of comments and analyses from different actors and groups in the Romania Left about the recent protest wave in the country, we are now publishing the policy statement/manifesto of the new left formation DEMOS. DEMOS is a leftist and environmentalist political platform from Romania established in 2016. Its members, previously active in various social movements and campaigns, decided to form it as a response to the growing inequality, severe poverty, destruction of the public goods and services and environmental degradation in the country, issues which ..
Source: Workers Solidarity Movement, Ireland Words: Andrew Flood Illustrative head image: Collage of photos posted by diamond geezer @diamondgeezer and daniel watson @DWxLW in the days after Brexit. The Leave / Brexit vote in the referendum came in the end as a surprise, a narrow win for Remain was expected. This may be because the core Leave vote was in the run-down white working class communities of the now desolate English and Welsh industrial zones. A population trapped in conditions of long-term unemployment and poverty who no one really pays much attention to anymore. Some on the left have seized ..
The Croatian political scene has been very lively since the last parliamentary elections held on 8th November 2015. The results of the election left both major centrist parties unable to form a majority government as the nominally left-of-centre coalition led by the Social Democratic Party (SDP) won 56 seats, while the nominally right-of-centre coalition led by the Croatian Democratic Union (CDU) won 59 seats in a 151-seat parliament. The biggest winner of the election was a new party called Bridge (“Most” in Croatian), which won 19 seats and was thus the decisive factor in the formation of the new government ..
As the UK’s referendum on the European Union approaches, Greek workers are facing more pain from Greece’s European creditors The Eurozone last week pushed Greece to accept more austerity in exchange for a loan of 7.5 billion euros to pay off the country’s debt. This comes less than a year after Greece was promised debt relief following a bailout worth 86 billion euros last summer. No debt relief deal is in sight, however. Even the IMF, normally a keen proponent of balanced budgets, argued austerity was only making matters worse in Greece. But the Eurozone, led by Germany and the Netherlands, rejected an ..
Note from LeftEast Editors: This article has been published in collaboration with the web-portal Bilten.org. A month and a half has passed since a Presidential blanket amnesty of over 50 corrupt government figures and their collaborators sparked social upheaval across Macedonia. The action laid bare deep societal rifts, cracked open by double legal standards, dividing on the one end a corrupt political class and their clients shielded by impunity, economic capital, and political power, and on the other the majority of citizens dispossessed of access to legal and social justice. Although public attention has focus ..
While at the Marx Is Muss 2016 conference earlier this month, Anja Ilic and Pavle Ilic (Marx21) interviewed Stathis Kouvelakis, a member of a party called Popular Unity, which split from Syriza last summer after the referendum. Kouvelakis served at Syriza’s central committee from 2012 to August 2015 and is also a professor of political theory at King’s College in London. This conversation focuses on the political and social situation in Greece today. I would like to start by asking you to summarise the political and social development of the Greek society after the events of August 2015, after the capitulat ..