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How Will He Play This?

Αssociated Press

Greece's newly-elected prime minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, background, looks on as outgoing prime minister Alexis Tsipras, leaves the Maximos Mansion in Athens, Monday, July 8, 2019 (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)

Democracy is a tricky business. There are actually very few true democracies in the world. Instead we have widely adopted a republic system whereby the people elect officials to pass and nix laws based on the ideals of that representative who most represents the views or is able to convince the most people they are the right person to place at the helm of government or in parliament.

For the first time since 2015, SYRIZA’s Alexis Tsipras finds himself as opposition leader in Hellenic Parliament once again. It is much too soon after his Premiership for history to judge Alexis Tsipras. When the dust settles on the Greek crisis which spanned the better part of a decade, then historians will be more able to accurately gauge his work and pass judgement accordingly.

What Alexis Tsipras has now is a chance to affect the present. The Greek people, in July, overwhelmingly voted to elect Kyriakos Mitsotakis in a bid to fully put the crisis behind them once and for all and to start anew. From his position as leader of the opposition, Tsipras has a golden opportunity to promote himself and in fact do some much-needed damage control on the image of himself and his party by engaging with Mitsotakis’ ND party and driving Greece forward in a spirit of unity.

The last time that Alexis Tsipras was in a similar position to the one he finds himself today, he was younger and hungry for a chance at the big chair of the premiership. Now, he is faced with a choice: Does he go back to the divisive politics that polarized the Greek people and toppled the Samaras government which was just starting to show signs of turning around the Greek economy in 2015?

Or will he go along with progressive legislation proposed by Mr. Mitsotakis such as the vote for Greeks abroad, infrastructure upgrades, and a new national plan on how to be more inclusive to those that are physically disabled.

There are two choices, with one clearly the correct one for the betterment of a beleaguered and weary nation still struggling with the effects of an economic depression.