We are on the brink of a major environmental and social disaster. Entire regions of Greece are practically disappearing. Tens of thousands of people are losing their lives, losing all prospects in their homeland, being objectively turned into internal refugees. From the fires in Ilia in 2007, Mati in 2018 to today’s fires we have the same pattern of destruction, the same data, the same people responsible for the same criticisms.
Everything has been said. Everything is known.
But we can not ignore the fact that the situation at the moment is marginal. We do not know what the next day will be like and this is literal. We do not know what will happen tomorrow, in fifteen days, in two months. The catastrophe we are experiencing right now may be the prelude to what happens tomorrow or in a month. Perhaps we see much worse and what is at stake is the very nature and quality of our lives before it even passes into the hands of the bosses and the state. We say this taking into account a number of factors.
1. Extreme weather events will continue and intensify. Climate change, that is, global warming as a result of capitalist production, is here. And we have every reason to wait for the next period to have conditions that will favor holocausts again. Or floods.
2. The state can not and does not want to fulfill its own part of the contract in a contract society. At all levels, it either refuses to organize prevention and protection mechanisms or even fails to even manage the technical part of such a treaty. The state cares to serve its own interests and the only thing that interests its political part in relation to the fires is the cost of voting in the election game. His whole strategy is focused on protecting himself, not on protecting the social base. We do not expect anything different in the next fires.
3. After the disaster, there will be a communication party in which the state will distribute some money to the victims, will promise more and as soon as the lights go out the issue will be forgotten. Let us remember that they even ate the huge amount of solidarity that had been collected for the fire victims of Ilia in 2007. Nor in terms of restoring the immediate needs of those who lost everything do we have to expect anything from the state.
4. Despite the enormous destruction that has already taken place as of this writing, there are still many forests that have not been burned throughout the territory. What Evia, Ilia, Attica suffered, the whole country can suffer on a much larger scale in the near future. Much further away from the capital with worse conditions.
In the light of these data, we call on the social base in terms of locality, in villages, towns and cities to organize itself immediately and to take as much as possible any initiative for fire prevention and surveillance of the forest areas of their areas. His “run to be saved” policy, which the state has chosen as its strategy, is sure to cause enormous additional damage and possibly more casualties. The experience itself in this crisis showed us that self-organization and taking responsibility by the locals and the locals was what saved what was saved. This must be multiplied.
To grab municipal and political authorities by the neck to mobilize whatever mechanisms they have but also to equip the local self-organized structures, projects and patrols. Take advantage of the voluntary offer of non-locals who will come to help. To require the coordination and guidance of the Fire Brigade even in addition to the firefighting by those locals who have the ability and will to do so. With safety first, we must not run before mobilizing. To drastically reshape fire protection and forest protection in general based on local communities. To guard the burned areas with the aim not only of regenerating the forests but also of their expansion.
But also the social base outside the “dangerous areas” must be mobilized. Both for the immediate needs of the internal refugees and for the political struggle for their rehabilitation immediately afterwards.
In these catastrophes, as in the previous ones, we saw social solidarity manifested massively and spontaneously. We also saw the dynamics of self-organization, its efficiency and ingenuity. What is different now is that the kind of crisis we went through makes these occasional, and under the state of despair social health manifestations, necessary on a permanent basis.
We are alone. And we have on the one hand a state and capital to suck us and at the same time to turn the environment of our daily life into ashes.
We have to take matters into our own hands or compromise on levels of misery unprecedented for what we are used to. To save nature and us from the catastrophic scourge called state and capital.