Greek Neo-Nazi Party Golden Dawn Rejected by Greek Voters (2/2)

In Part 2 of my interview of Greece’s former Deputy Defence Minister, Costas Isychos, Mr. Isychos explains that, in austerity-ravaged Greece, support for the far-right remains strong despite the electoral defeat of Europe’s most brazen Neo-Nazi party, Golden Dawn.

Mr. Isychos also argues that the incoming New Democracy government is unlikely to effect meaningful changes to Greece’s foreign and defence policies and that it will maintain the Greek state’s alliance with the right-wing governments of the United States and Israel, which are depriving Palestinians of their rights under international law.

Part 2 of our discussion can be seen here:

Greece’s Syriza Government Loses Election After Imposing Harsh Austerity (1/2)

This past weekend, Greece’s right-wing New Democracy Party, which is led by a Harvard-educated, former banker, won Greece’s national in a landslide and removed from power the purportedly left-wing SYRIZA government of Alexis Tsipras.

For The Real News Network, I spoke yesterday with Greece’s former Deputy Defence Minister, Costas Isychos, about SYRIZA’s defeat. Along with other SYRIZA MPs, Mr. Isychos defected from SYRIZA after Alexis Tsipras betrayed his anti-austerity mandate in 2015.

According to Mr. Isychos, New Democracy won the election not because Greek voters support New Democracy’s policies, but because they were fed up with Mr. Tsipras.

My discussion with Mr. Isychos can be seen here:

Greek Court Acquits 21 Environmental Defenders in Eldorado Gold Trial

In October 2018, I attended the opening of a criminal trial in Thessaloniki Greece against 21 environmental defenders who had resisted the open-pit gold mine of Canadian miner Eldorado Gold.

The Eldorado Gold mine is situated in a pristine forest in Chalkidiki in northern Greece.

The 21 defendants were accused of a range of serious criminal offences in connection with an arson attack at the mine.

Last month, the Greek court handed down a verdict and acquitted all defendants.

In this report, I speak to Maria Kadoglou of Mining Watch Greece about the acquittals and the Greek state’s ongoing efforts to suppress resistance to the mine.

My discussion with Maria can be seen and listened to here:

https://therealnews.com/stories/greek-court-acquits-21-environmental-defenders-in-eldorado-gold-trial

European Parliament Bans Single-Use Plastics in Historic Vote

For the Real News, I speak to Dr. Jonathan Latham about the European Parliament’s historic decision to adopt a broad ban on single-use plastics.

As Dr. Latham explains in our interview, the crisis of plastics pollutions in the oceans has become so severe that 95% of table salt contains plastic:

https://therealnews.com/stories/european-parliament-bans-single-use-plastics-in-historic-vote. 

Canada’s Eldorado Gold Demands 850 Million Euros From The Greek State

On my recent trip to Greece, I travelled to the Halkidiki region of northern Greece to see the Skouries open pit gold mine of Canadian miner Eldorado Gold. Standing at the edge of the mine, I spoke to Maria Kadoglou of Mining Watch Greece about fierce, local opposition to the mine and attempts by Eldorado to extract 850 million euros from the Greek State after the company was forced to suspend mining operations.

My report from the Skouries mine can be seen and heard here:

https://therealnews.com/stories/canadian-miner-eldorado-gold-demands-850-million-euros-from-greek-state.

The is the second of two field reports that I have done on the Skouries mine. In the first report, I covered the commencement of a trial in Thessaloniki, Greece against 21 local environmental defenders who are accused of committing criminal offences at the Skouries mine. That report can be seen here: https://therealnews.com/stories/greek-state-prosecutes-21-environmental-defenders-for-opposition-to-eldorado-gold-mine.

Resistance to the Skouries mine was featured in the Avi Lewis / Naomi Klein documentary, This Changes Everything.

 

 

Greek State Prosecutes 21 Environmental Defenders For Their Opposition To Eldorado Gold’s Skouries Mine

Eldorado Gold’s Skouries mine, situated in a pristine forest in the Halkidiki region of Greece, is, in many ways, a case study in how Canadian extractive corporations enrich their executives and shareholders by ruthlessly externalizing and imposing the costs of their profit-taking activities on local populations.

Earlier this month, I visited the courthouse in Thessaloniki, Greece to attend the first day of a trial in which 21 local activists who oppose this mine are being charged with a range of serious offences, including operating a criminal organization.

While at the Thessaloniki courthouse, I interviewed defence lawyer Vasilis Tzimourtos, who is acting for 9 of the 21 accused activists.

Mr. Tzimourtos argued that, not only is the state’s case against his clients devoid of evidence, but his clients are ordinary citizens who are being persecuted by the Greek authorities for having protected their families and their fellow citizens from the environmental depredations of this mine.

My report on the Skouries criminal trial and my interview of Mr. Tzimourtos can be seen and listened to here:

https://therealnews.com/stories/greek-state-prosecutes-21-environmental-defenders-for-opposition-to-eldorado-gold-mine

Greece Exits its Bailout but Remains Shackled by Debt and Austerity

This week, the Greek government of Alexis Tsipras announced with great fanfare that Greece had exited its bailout and that it had regained, finally, the freedom to pursue its own economic and social policies.

But is this true?

For The Real News, I spoke yesterday to former Syriza MP Costas Lapavitsas. Costas Lapavitsas is currently a Professor of Economics at the University of London. In 2015, after Prime Minister Tsipras disregarded the historic result of a Greek referendum on austerity, Professor Lapavitsas defected from Syriza to the newly formed Popular Unity Party.

As he explains in this interview, despite Greece’s official exit from the bailout, the Greek government will remain shackled by debt and austerity for years to come. Moreover, the structure of Greece’s economy has not fundamentally changed, but its productive capacity has been severely degraded by austerity.

Our conversation can be seen and heard here:

https://therealnews.com/stories/greece-exits-its-bailout-but-remains-shackled-by-debt-and-austerity