Greece: On a journey that hasn’t ended yet – Polys Georgiadis

Polykarpos (Polys) Georgiadis and Vaggelis Chrysochoidis are two comrades imprisoned since August 2008, accused of accomplice in the kidnapping for ransom of the president (at the time) of northern Greece’s industrialist union Giorgos Mylonas in Thessaloniki by Vassilis Palaiokostas, a prison escapee and widely popular bandit, since “he has never hurt anyone’s life” and used banditry only against thieves such as industrialists, banks, etc. The two comrades refuse any participation in the abduction, but state their solidarity and defend their relationship with the fugitive Palaiokostas, who is accused for the same case. In February 2010, Polys and Vaggelis were sentenced in the first degree to 22 years, based on the testimony of a police-cooperating arrestee. Despite all witnesses failed to recognize or describe them properly during the trial, both are currently serving prison time. Their appeal will be examined in Thessaloniki on February 14th, 2012.

On a journey that hasn’t ended yet – Polys Georgiadis

A few more words on Mylonas’ kidnapping case in view of the upcoming (14-2/2012) Court of Appeals

“Of course I, too, condemn the act through which a man violently and through ruse takes possession of the fruits of someone else’s labor. But it’s precisely because of this that I made war on the rich, thieves of the goods of the poor. I too want to live in a society from which theft is banished. I do not approve of theft. I only used it as the means of revolt most appropriate for combating the most unjust of all thefts: private property.

[…] The struggle will only end when people will put their joys and suffering in common, their labors and their riches… when all will belong to everyone.”

Marius Jacob, anarchist communist, member of the illegalist proletarian group “Night Workers” [Les Travailleurs de la nuit]

When one early-2007 day I received a call from an old friend, asking for my help to hide from the state watchdogs that were after him, I didn’t need to think twice to accept and unconditionally offer to help him. I was fully aware of the risks that came with my decision. For me, my solidarity with Vassilis Palaiokostas was not stemming from the apotheosis of an illegal fetishism, but fulfilled concrete elements of my anti-authoritarian world-view.

Vassilis is flesh born of the flesh of the proletariat, having felt in his own skin, since a teenager, the bosses’ terrorism and the capitalist exploitation, working as a wage slave in a factory. Quickly, both half-instinctly and half-consciously, he got armed and turned against the exploiters and their watchdogs. No, Vassilis Palaiokostas is no “common felon”, neither just a “criminal offender”, nor bears he any relation to the “organized crime”. He claims no part in that particular sector of the economy, of the black accumulation of capital and clandestine capitalism. His illegality was never “intra-class”, did not belong to this peculiar civil war of delinquency, where the poor and oppressed rob other poor and oppressed. Even if we possibly disagree with certain aspects of his action, we have to say that Vassilis Palaiokostas targeted exclusively the plutocrats and state authorities. He belongs to a long-standing tradition of rebellion in our land’s popular culture, a tradition we can trace back to the Byzantium (with the Bogomils, the Apelates, etc.), that crosses the Ottoman Empire (with the klephts, the hajduks and the hainides), continues to the post-Ottoman era (with the listokratia — the rule of banditry or brigands — after ’21, the bandit-rebels who joined the Greek People’s Liberation Army–ELAS, etc.), lasting to our days, now demassificated, by a handful of conscious delinquent proletarians.

Thus, for me, solidarity with Vassilis Palaiokostas was simply one more stop on a never-ending journey of class solidarity: with every exploited, every oppressed, regardless of ethnicity or sex. It is simultaneously solidarity to the laid-off employees of Mylonas’ enterprises in Greece and the laid-off workers of the oil company in Zhanaozen, Kazakhstan, who are holding occupations, forcing trains to overturn and torching the national independence manifestations. It is simultaneously solidarity to the inexhaustible strikers of Halivourgia — the Greek Steelworks — and the indomitable proletarians and Indians of Peru who resist the Minas Conga mining project for the exploitation of gold ore deposits by the Northern American Capital. It is simultaneously solidarity to the stubborn of Tahrir Square and the emerging women’s movement, defying the Islamic fundamentalism that triumphed in the electoral trap. It is simultaneously solidarity to the Palestinian people and our class brothers and sisters who set fire to the streets of Santiago and Oakland, London and Damascus, Rome and Tunis, Paris and Algiers. It is simultaneously solidarity to the wretched of the plants in China and India, the weaving factories in Bangladesh, the modern galleys across the earth. It is simultaneously solidarity to our brothers and sisters who vegetate in Africa’s mines, Brazil’s favelas, United States’ ghettos, Parisian banlieues, in the shanty-towns of the “Third World”…

My solidarity with Vassilis Palaiokostas is solidarity with every combative proletarian.

Good luck, comrade.


Polykarpos Georgiadis
Corfu [Kerkyra] prisons, January 6th, 2012

Sources: Indymedia Athens / Rioters