Ahead of Germany’s elections tomorrow a survey of articles available on the web on the rise of Die Linke (The Left) seems to be in order.
The British media is not known for its interest in the politics of other countries, other than the United States.
The lack of coverage of elections in Germany (Europe’s largest economy and most populous nation, worlds largest exporter) compared to the wall to wall coverage of the US presidential elections is instructive.
What happens in Germany is important from any point of view. For the left it has an added importance.
The meteoric rise of Die Linke and the profound effect it is having on the countries politics should be of utmost interest to the rest of the continent’s left.
Though there is plenty in German, this is a language that is little spoken in this country (and as an article in Tuesday’s Education Guardian pointed out, the study of which is in decline
Material in English on Die Linke is in short supply.
The Guardian has run a series of articles on the elections this week including a couple on Die Linke: Die Linke is riding a wave, but for how long? by Jan-Werner Mueller and Die Linke party wins German votes by standing out from crowd by Kate Connolly in Erfurt (yes of the eponymous Programme) and Berlin
For some background on the main developments in Germany society and politics over the last two decades since the fall of the wall you could do much worse than to read Perry Anderson’s article “A New Germany” in the New Left Review.
The breakthrough by Die Linke in state (Länder) elections elections in the West of the country is the cause of much of the breathless expectations of the results of the die Linke tomorrow. For details of those results you could look at these pages: Saarland, Saxony, Thuringia
For a some perspectives form the German revolutionary left you could try an article by Stefan Bornost on the these elections. He is the editor of Marx21, a magazine produced by comrades who were formerly Linksruck, German affiliate of the International Socialist Tendency (linked to the Socialist Workers Party in Britain), in last week’s Sociaslist Worker Breakthrough for German left
Previously he has written in the Internatioanl Socailism Journal on the situation there Germany: the rise of the left” in Issue: 108 (2005) or Germany’s political earthquake” in Issue: 116 (2007)
He also did an interview for the ISJ “Germany’s strategy debate” in Issue: 111(2006) along with long time member of the IST in Germany, Volkhard Mosler and a younger comrade Christine Buchholz, who is standing for the Bundestag in tomorrow’s elections. She also has a rather nice website.
Another perspective comes from Andrej Hunko. You can watch a video of him speaking at Socialist Resistance’s day school on Broad Parties in London last year. He is also a candidate in the election tomorrow and has a campaign website. He was previously a member of a predecessor of Linksruck, the SAG.
The RSB decided not to join Die Linke. Some perspectives on why they did this can be read in the article by one of their comrades B.B. Herbst form 2005
at the International Viewpoint site
The FI’s other section in Germany, the ISL, decided to join Die Linke.
For their perspectives you could read a couple of articles by Manuel Kellner Crisis of the SPD and the New “Left Party” or Die Linke”, a new party between hope and adaptation (2007)