Common Declaration of Jean-Luc Mélenchon – candidat of France’s Left Front (Front de Gauche) for the French Presidential Election 2012 – and Oskar Lafontaine – founding member of Germany’s Left Party (Die Linke) and former German MP, Chancellor in Strasbourg (14.12.2011).
Address to European Workers
The current leaders of the European Union are leading us to disaster.
For years they have given more power to finance. The result is catastrophe. The environment has been sacrificed. Unemployment has exploded. Workers are squeezed and impoverished. The real economy has been taken hostage by the banks. In the name of the crisis that they have caused, European governments want to deepen their austerity policies. Under pressure from Angela Merkel and Nicolas Sarkozy, they decided to write a new treaty in order to impose economic rigor, that will remove from the European people the right to freely set their budgets. None of them thought to seek the opinion of the people on such a fundamental text. It’s a headlong rush into austerity Europe.
Because Europe cannot be built against the people, we demand referendums in our countries on this treaty.
Sarkozy and Merkel want to generalise across Europe the disastrous Agenda 2010 [labour ‘reforms’] that cruelly worsened the situation of German workers. Their objective is to deepen competition between European workers in a levelling down of rights which have made Europe the most socially advanced region in the world. This strategy deliberately pits European peoples against each other. Sarkozy and Merkel don’t hesiste to fan the flames of nationalisation and xenophobia risking the reopening of old wounds. Merkel’s friends speak of forcing the Greeks to sell their islands. Sarkozy deals out poison pills to the new Eurozone entrants. His provocative proposals seek to divert the anger of the people from the real culprits, the banks and finance to which political leaders have handed their power.
We call on you to use all your force to resist this backwards step in our European civilisation.
We call on you not to fall into the trap that threatens peace in Europe.
Together, we will maintain the friendship between the German and French peoples, for this is the condition of peace for the whole of Europe.
How to guarantee peace? Peace cannot be decreed. It is built by the cooperation between the peoples for the benefit of all. It is incompatible with the arrogant domination of two Government leaders over all the others. It requires a policy led in the general European interest.
It is time to govern to satisfy the needs and aspirations of the great mass of the population and thus the workers of Europe: distributing the wealth, defending and expanding the right to decent pensions, relaunching public services, eradicating precariousness and with an implacable struggle against poverty, inequality and for the evironment.
European workers, don’t be resigned ! Finance cannot do anything against peoples who are determined. For the real wealth is the fruit of human labour. By mobilising, European workers can put an end to the financial orgy. And finally start building, without delay, a humaine world.
(Revolting Europe translation)