No one stood taller in World War II against the terrorist Nazis than did Greece, whose sons and daughters resisted so valiantly British Prime Minister Winston Churchill proclaimed that, “From now on, we shall say that heroes fight like Greeks.”
They included courageous people like Manolis Glezos, who, at 18 – along with his friend Apostolos Santas – climbed up a cave in the dark under the Acropolis and took down the Nazi flag and replaced it with that of their proud country for the Nazis to see at dawn.
Glezos, now 92, is a Member of the European Parliament for the ruling Radical Left SYRIZA party of Alexis Tsipras, but is so ashamed that his leader has kow-towed to international lenders and broken campaign promises to restore social benefits that he apologized.
For that, he was disrespected by Tsipras and SYRIZA, none of whose members have a single scintilla of Glezos’ courage and manliness.
While he and so many Greeks, including hundreds of thousands who didn’t survive, stood up to the bullies of Germany, Tsipras has uttered some feeble words of fake resistance and rolled over for the Germans, who have ordered him to keep imposing the same kind of harsh austerity measures that have impoverished people.
Germany is the biggest contributor to two bailouts of 240 billion euros ($272.5 billion) from the Troika of the European Union-International Monetary Fund-European Central Bank (EU-IMF-ECB) which insisted on big pay cuts, tax hikes, slashed pensions and worker firings and got it.
Greece needed sane austerity to roll back decades of wild overspending by the alternating thieves of the New Democracy Capitalists and PASOK Anti-Socialists, who hired hundreds of thousands of needless workers in return for votes.
Instead, the lenders imposed conditions as Draconian in their effect as the spending binge had in its and brought Greece – and its leaders – to their knees.
Led by the gleefully sadistic Germans – Chancellor Angela “Dominatrix” Merkel, and her Finance Minister Wolfgang “Fuhrer” Schaeuble, they have humiliated a succession of Greek Premiers.
The first was George “The Money is There” Papandreou, formerly of PASOK, who knelt faster than a five-dollar hooker. Then it was New Democracy’s Antonis “Mr. Bean Counter” Samaras, who rolled over with a smile.
Now it’s Tsipras’ turn to be caned and spanked, this time in public in Berlin, where Merkel has summoned him to appear after she and Schaeuble forced him to renege on virtually every campaign promise he made.
Some of them were needed, but most everyone apart from his SYRIZAN’s and their fanatic core knew he couldn’t, nor would, do any of them but would then throw up his hands and say, “I fought the good fight,” before falling before Germany just as did Papandreou and Samaras.
Unlike them, Tsipras at least pretended he would fight for workers, pensioners and the poor whom he has now abandoned like a baby in a woods full of wolves.
What’s made this retreat more pathetic is the sorry spin-doctoring of Tsipras and his Finance Minister Yanis “Die Easy” Varoufakis who have replaced the deeds of Greeks in WWII against the Germans, with faint words designed to insulate them from blame.
Varoufakis, whose preening peacock act is wearing so thin he may not last in the office, said he didn’t give the finger to Germany in a 2013 video in Croatia because now he knows Greece needs German money. He should have pulled a Glezos and admitted, or wished, he had because Greeks would have more respect for him than to cave in.
Tsipras’ show of defiance, really designed to distract Greeks from his utter capitulation to Germany, was to demand Germany pay WWII reparations, which he knows will never happen but is his sleight-of-hand Wizard of Oz behind-the-curtain show.
Beggars can’t be choosers, which is what Tsipras and Varoufakis – following the hollow footsteps of Papandreou and Samaras – have reduced Greece to, a country which for millennia never gave an inch of ground to invaders and traitors without resisting.
Tsipras and Varoufakis will say they have no weapons, the last bluff of warning Greece would leave the Eurozone having been called – and raised – by Merkel and Schaeuble, who delight in Schadenfreude, gaining pleasure in someone else’s misery.
Merkel is never happier than when whipping some submissive Greek leader. If only Glezos were younger, he would have taught her what Greek pride really is and thundered, “Better one hour of freedom than 40 years of slavery,” which is what Papandreou, Samaras and Tsipras are now subjecting Greece to as its 21st Century fate.
So Tsipras will go to Berlin, get his ass whipped and claim he won because, in the SYRIZAN language, he got a “warming glow,” and return home to implement all the reforms he said he never would, raise his weak arms in real surrender but mock victory and say he – as did Papandreou and Samaras who came under the German jack boots – has saved Greece.
It is Germany that has all the weapons in this fight, mostly because they were put there by successive Greek leaders who plundered the country for the profit of themselves and their parties, not their country which they betrayed for gain.
So unless someone stands up like Glezos, we have to get ready to say that, “From now on we shall say Greeks don’t fight at all.”