The pious wish of main opposition SYRIZA is to fashion a broad opposition front which it will lead and draw on by exploiting others.

It tried out this tactic on this year’s anniversary of the 1973 Athens Polytechnic uprising against the junta when it decided to copy an initiative of the KKE Greek Communist Party to hold a gathering banned by the government - due to the worsening COVID-19 epidemic – in defiance of the government and it apparently plans to repeat the tactic.

The latest example was SYRIZA’s abortive effort to forge a common front regarding Greece’s healthcare system in the context of the pandemic.

The common denominator of these failed efforts is the aim of co-opting the centre-left, Pasok-based Movement for Change (KINAL) which refused to sign on to both SYRIZA’s declaration regarding the 17 November anniversary and its statement on healthcare.

Thus, SYRIZA’s attempted flirt was nipped in the bud. In fact, it was not so eager to create a common front with the left as its term in government deligitimised it in the eyes of leftists.

SYRIZA essentially wanted to make headway in convincing KINAL’s political base to adopt its political outlook, but the leader of the Movement for Change is politically experienced and is familiar with how power balances work.

On a deeper level SYRIZA’s opening cannot take root in the centre-left as for years it derided cadres of Pasok and KINAL and then twice forged a coalition government with Panos Kammenos’ right-wing Independent Greeks party. Hence, KINAL has anything but a conciliatory outlook.

Memory does not fade so easily.


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