Friday, February 22, 2019
It would come as no surprise if EU opponents make up the majority in the European Parliament after the next elections. The EU in its present form also has numerous opponents in the left wing. Gregor Gysi warns against giving yesterday's answers to today's questions.
Left-European leader Gregor Gysi has criticized the lack of unity of his party in dealing with right-wing populists. "A weakness of the left is that they have no common view in this regard," said Gysi in an interview before the European party conference of the Left in Bonn. Left as he wanted an internationalist answer. "And then there's a part that says we have to get the national up, that's not good."
The European elections in May could end dramatically from Gysis's point of view. "I believe that there is a danger that we will have a majority of EU opponents in the European Parliament," warned the former leader of the Left Party in the Bundestag. "That's why I'm actively involved in the election campaign." After the election, it will need panels for talks with the SPD and Greens. "Otherwise it will not work." Gysis party family will predict about 50 of the future 705 seats in the next European Parliament.
The upsurge of nationalist politicians such as US President Donald Trump or Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orban likened Gysi with the Counter-Reformation against the theses of Martin Luther. "We had the Reformation 501 years ago because the Catholic Church exaggerated its absolutist power," said the 71-year-old. Today, global corporations exaggerated their global power without the control of a functioning world politics. "This raises social issues, and now comes the Counter-Reformation."
Time can not be turned back
Trump and Orban wanted to go back to national selfishness and away from the International. "But you can not turn back the story by 80 years," Gysi said. "That's the achievement of the Right, and I expect the Left to find an answer." Some left-wing parties in Europe were weakened by strife, for example in France, Spain and even in Germany. "There are disagreements, such as the euro," Gysi said. He himself had opposed the introduction of the common currency, but now considers that its abolition is a mistake. "That would also lead to social upheavals again."
The issue of refugees was similarly controversial. It is not up to the left to argue over a cap. "Our task is to identify the causes and the steps that can be taken against it," the former left-wing leader demanded. Against the AfD one must clearly distinguish themselves. "I must not make the mistake of meeting them, according to the motto: You have a bit of a right, yes, that was the attempt of (Federal Interior Minister Horst) Seehofer, and he failed miserably." The left must fill a new role. "We used to be a protest party, but that's over, you have to redefine yourself."
At its party congress in Bonn, the Left Party of today discusses its program for the European elections in May. Especially on Saturday a controversial debate is expected on the attitude of the left to Europe. However, a controversial sentence attributing to the EU "militaristic, undemocratic and neo-liberal" fundamentals was defused in advance.
Dietmar Bartsch, chairman of the left-wing parliamentary group, called on his party to defend the European Union against its opponents. "The goal of the right is to acquire this Europe in order to destroy it," he told the editorial network Germany. For the left, it must be about "the original positive basic ideas that are connected with Europe in the foreground: the peace project, the cultural project, the social balance". The "Rhein-Neckar-Zeitung" Bartsch said: "In Europe, a Kulturkampf rages from the right, the Left must be a bastion of humanity against the forces of law." The first parliamentary managing director of the left-wing group, Jan Korte, demands from the party congress a united commitment to the EU. "We have to say clearly: we stand by this European Union," he told the "Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung". "We must defend the EU, which is under attack by right wing and right-wing extremists."