How Things Change…

I'm annoyed by how often we use the word 'historic’ – this event is historic, that event is historic – slowly, the word loses some of its value. It is degraded. It loses its meaning.

However, the characterization of U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s trip to Greece as ‘historic,’ with visits to Thessaloniki and Chania, is fully justified.

It drastically changes the relationship between the two countries.

It puts Greek-American relations on a unique level in their history. For the benefit of both.

At Souda Bay, Greece offers a valuable base to the U.S. Navy while the United States directly or indirectly undertakes the security of Greece and promotes its general upgrading. It attaches to Greece the label of a stable, pro-western country. That has positive consequences for investment and tourism alike.

It would be absurd for Erdogan to think of undertaking military operations in the region where there is a U.S. base with members of America’s armed forces.

The Greek armed forces will also benefit from their closer cooperation with the American military and will have easier access to the military equipment market of America.

It is indeed a new day for the security of the country, a promising start to a possible new chapter for Greece.

How the years bring change! Who could have imagined, at the time of Andreas Papandreou, that these things would happen? In those days people were going wild, shouting “take out the death bases.” When Papandreou signed the agreement to remove them, he supposedly mouthed the slogan "the bases are leaving, the fight is now justified." Who would have imagined then that the day would come when not only Chania – Souda – would host an American base, but that the people would accept them with relief?

This is largely due to the realization that anti-Americanism was detrimental to the country's interests.

However, it is also due to the visible, immediate danger coming from Turkey, as a result of which the Greek people understand the need for the establishment of close, allied relations with the leading military force in the world.

"Today I am in Crete," Pompeo said, "to showcase one of America’s strongest military relationships throughout all of Europe. And we are incredibly proud to support the country's leadership."

Both are strong statements.

Erdogan, eat your heart out!


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