Newsday, Long Island’s main newspaper, published an extensive and positive article about George Tsunis, the new American ambassador to Greece.
That in itself is important. It shows the respect he enjoys in his area, in his ‘village’. But the article also revealed some facts, which as far as I know, were published for the first time and are interesting.
It reveals that Tsunis, as a child of Greek immigrants, first learned the Greek language and then English. He is not the only child of expatriates who first learned Greek, but he is the only ambassador to Greece who began his life that way.
The article also published statements by New York’s U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer: “I called him at about 8 o’clock and said, ‘It’s getting done tonight.’ Whoa. He didn’t know.”
Schumer told Newsday, “I pushed hard for him from the beginning because he’s the perfect guy to be ambassador to Greece,” Schumer said. “He knows Greek history. He knows the Greek language. And I don’t think anyone in America has better ties to the Greek American community than him.”
New Jersey’s U.S. Senator Robert Menendez, who also chairs the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, also played a key role in his candidacy.
And, of course, on top of that, Tsunis has maintained a friendly relationship with President Biden over the past 20 years.
Why is all this important? Because in case of a crisis, Tsunis can pick up the phone and talk to them. Something, of course, that no ordinary career diplomat can do.