This special issue of Quistioni is devoted to the debates of the Party of the European Left in preparation for the European elections. The main part consists of 9 papers prepared by EL working groups, which we call “thematic clusters”, and form the basis for the drafting of an election manifesto of the Party of the European Left.
This manifesto is to be presented to the public in February.
The “working” papers are the result of a collective work process, complemented by an article by Cornelia Hildebrandt, co-chair of the network transform! europe, the think-tank associated to the Party of the European Left. In this article Hildebrandt sketches out the political lines of conflict before the European elections, based on Eurobarometer data.
EL President, Walter Baier summarizes the political conditions under which the Party of the European Left prepares its electoral campaign.
In addition to the paper on ecological transformation, Don’t change the climate, change the system, Fréderic Boccara, French economist and member of the EL Executive Board, deals in his article with the political economy of ecological and social transformation.
Tom Unterreiner, chairman of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament in UK contributes with an article on European Security Politics.
Roland Kulke, transform! europe’s representative in Brussels and facilitator of the Working Group on “Productive transformation”, reports from a forum on digital technologies in the communist governed Indian state of Kerala in order to give an impulse to the debate in the EL.
As it is quite evident, this issue comes out at a very critical stage, in which it is becoming increasingly clear that we are experiencing the first fires of a possible third world war. This underlying tendency to war, with Nato as the main driving force, is strongly intertwined with the crisis in world balances and the Western attempt to counteract any change.
In fact, over the past decades, neo-liberal globalisation has expanded capitalist social relations on a global scale and – dialectically – set the conditions for a greater economic balance between the different areas of the world, challenging the privileged position of the Western countries and, in particular, of the Usa.
Faced with this risk, the Trump administration initiated a deglobalisation aimed at restoring pre-existing power relations. In the context of the war in Ukraine, the Biden administration greatly expanded the sanctions system and Russia – the target of the sanctions – began to experiment with alternative forms of international trade to those managed through the dollar circuit.
Similarly, the Brics phenomenon, which involves the major non-Western economic powers and the major oil-producing countries of the Middle East, has developed greatly and is causing a change in the world’s balances and fracture lines. Significant in the Brics is the trend towards the use of alternative currencies to the dollar, increasing the possibility of the latter losing its highly advantageous position as the world’s reserve and trading currency.
In this context, the economic sanctions, and the break of all economic relations between Europe and Russia have heavily penalised the European economy and particularly the German economy, which had built one of the elements of its economic competitiveness on the supply of cheap raw materials. Europe thus finds itself weakened, deprived of a strong centre of government, more divided than in the past and more subservient to the will of the Usa.
Our elaboration, therefore, revolves around a focal point: how can we work to build another Europe that is a factor of justice and peace within it and in a world that we want to be multipolar? This is what we discuss in this issue of the journal, and we will return to it in future issues.
Paolo Ferrero is director of Quistioni. He has been national secretary of the Party of Communist Refoundation, Italy, and minister of Welfare in the second Prodi Government.