Threatening clouds, once again, begin to cover the political sky in Athens. A climate of increasing political tension threatens to disorient part of the Greek people and return Greece to old unpleasant times.
The opposition is creating political tension so anachronistic in its perceptions and enactment that it seems to have emerged from a historical ‘time warp’.
No, I have no inside information. But you don’t need that to grasp the obvious.
One look at the headlines of the ‘progressive’ newspapers, which I only read out of journalistic duty, and a look at the texts of the speeches of some politicians, will throw you into deep depression.
But if someone responds to them, or attacks them as the prime minister finally did – he called them “underworld” … then the defenders of freedom of the press will be ‘tearing their robes.’
But with this kind of ‘journalism’ the time is approaching when society itself will demand control of the media. (Here in New York, the Federal Court is the scene of a libel lawsuit filed by Sarah Palin – the former governor of Alaska and U.S. Presidential candidate John McCain’s running mate – against the New York Times. The case may eventually reach the Supreme Court).
Also, looking at the deeds and words of certain politicians in Parliament, one wonders if they are consciously trying to discredit the institution itself. That is why its president was right to take action recently.
Obviously these people are either unable to live in ‘today’, or they have decided they want to return to ‘yesterday’.
And to think that these are young people who would be expected to look at the life and interests of the country with a different eye.
This picture reality was drawn in the most vivid way by the contrasting presentations of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and the leader of the official opposition last Sunday night, during the debate on the motion of censure against his government tabled by the latter.
“On Thursday morning,” Mitsotakis said, “one of the biggest banks – JPMorgan Chase – announced the acquisition of part of a Greek company valued at more than 1 billion. At the same time, its CEO announced his intentions to invest even more in Greece. Another vote of confidence.”
A little later, a few hundred meters away, Mr. Tsipras submitted a motion of censure against what he called the worst government since the junta.
What worries me is not that the government is in danger. After all, in a democracy it is normal for governments to change.
What worries me is the damage that can be caused by the unjustified tension, by the shameless and dishonest personal attacks and the effects that they have on the unity of the people at a time when:
– The Turks are continuing their provocative course in the Aegean and in Cyprus.
– The impact on the international scene and more specifically in Greece that the Ukrainian crisis will have, whatever happens, will be substantial.
– The coronavirus continues to affect society and the economy.
– And, of course, the economy is still vulnerable to shocks.
The country’s debt, under the circumstances, is rising. Inflation is rampant in the Eurozone – and in the United States – and is ripping up the budgets of the most economically weak households.
And this, of course, makes society ‘boil’. This, in turn, creates a time bomb in politics and also undermines the foundations of the system.
Let the political confrontations focus on these problems, instead of being done in such a way that acts as a brake on development, weakens national defense, and degrades the public life of the country.