Under a blazing sun, at midday on Thursday, May 17, tens of thousands of Greek workers poured onto the streets of central Athens to protest the anti-working class policies of the right-wing socialist government of Konstantinos Simitis. This was the second general strike in the space of one month. Although the final figures have not yet been published, it was clearly a very successful strike.

The defeat of the Olive Tree coalition in the recent general election in Italy came as no surprise to anyone. In the past five years it had carried out a series of anti- working class measures that had led to the disillusionment of a significant layer of workers and youth. But now that the right wing is in power we can expect an explosive situation in the labour movement.

In July of this year the G8 summit is going to be held in Genoa, Italy. Similarly to Seattle, Prague and Nice, Genoa will be an important gathering for all those who want to protest against the "status quo". We are publishing an appeal from comrades in Italy raising the question of the role of the working class in the struggle against imperialism and globalisation