Thursday, 10 July 2008

Socialist Resistance conference: Joseph Healy reports back

I was recently invited by Socialist Resistance to speak at a conference on ‘Voices of the Working Class in Europe’. I was asked to speak specifically on what is happening with other Green parties in Europe and the European Green Party. I gave an honest and open assessment from the perspective of Green Left and based on my experiences over the last two years and contacts with other Green parties. Other speakers at the conference were from Sinistra Critica, which split from Communista Rifundazione after the victory of the Right in Italy. They had much to say about the role of that party, in which they were involved, in the Prodi government. Die Linke from Germany also gave an honest assessment of the various currents in their party and what some of their weaknesses are, as well as some information about votes in the German parliament by the Greens. The speaker from Portugal was from Bloco de Esquerda, which is a new open and non-sectarian left party based on drawing widespread support from across social movements and the anti-war movement in particular. All speakers expressed the need for an open and self-critical approach to progressive politics. The Dutch Socialist Party was also represented and their speaker emphasised their increase in support since they took a strong anti-EU constitution and anti-Lisbon Treaty line. All of the speakers were determined to look at new and non-sectarian ways of involving people in progressive movements in various European countries. I am also including their speeches.

I also held a workshop on European Green parties at the conference where there was some lively debate as well as support for Green Left from Socialist Resistance members present. The most well attended workshop was the one with the speaker from Die Linke, where I raised some questions about the situation in the former GDR. A number of Green Left members attended the conference and also participated in the plenaries and workshops. I will be taking part in a fringe meeting at conference on the issue of the European Green parties organised by Matt Sellwood and with a speaker from the EGP.

Green Parties in Europe


Die Linke

Portugal-the-left-bloc:Bloco de Esquerda

The Dutch Socialist Party

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