Illegal immigrants and Turkey
I will not deny that political games between Ankara and Athens regarding illegal immigrants may exist, but I am far away from believing any conspiracy theories of a controlled and forced destabilization of Greece by Turkey.
It is like in so many other cases in Greece, no conspiracy theory is absurd enough as long as it means that the fault lies with the others.
Turkey is maybe just doing what Mr. Salamouras would obviously do as well. Sending the migrants where they want to go!
So, no reason to blame Turkey. The migrants want to go to Europe so why should Turkey deal with that problem?
Why should Greece deal with that problem? Why Germany, why the Netherlands? Why anyone?
Greece has 206km of direct border with Turkey. As everyone agrees, these 206km are the main gateway for illegal imigrants to Greece.
Obviously Greece with its incredibly expensive Army is not able to protect these 206km even with the support of Frontex.
Let?s take a look at Turkey then, because, surprise, also Turkey has borders. Just with Iran, Iraq and Syria, Turkey shares almost 1700km of direct borders -- 1700km that have a similar or worse topography than the Greek-Turkish border.
If Greece is not able to control its 206km of border with Turkey, how can you expect that Turkey can control a 1700km long borderline with states that are all considered conflict states and then additionally also protect the Turkish-Greek border?
While in Greece until now not even one camp exists that fulfills at least minimum standards, Turkey has just established with help of the Red Cross and Halfmoon camps for 50,000 Syrian refugees even though Turkey itself has still to fight with thousands of people that lost their homes during the 2011 earthquakes.
In the position of Ankara I would be fed up by now with the EU and the US, which have for decades been playing their political games with Turkey?s direct or close by neighbours in the name of peace and freedom, continously supporting and demounting their respective despots just the way the want it.
The Greek left
Does Mrs. Papariga consider that we are experiencing a Greek spring? Unfortunately most of us are living in a Greek fall. I can never understand why over all these years none of the left-wing parties in Greece formed any rational program except as others have commented, to assist in the destruction of our economy, by relentless strikes and demonstrations which damage our tourist industry. Our education and health services are a shambles and have been for years and yet none of these so-called socialist parties have attempted to promote a program except to assist teachers and medical staff to strike for rises in wages. How any Greek citizen can continue to vote for these parties I cannot understand. They can?t even work together and do nothing whatsoever for the wages that they take from us, the tax payers. Who has suppooirted Greece throughout time, the West. Have they forgotten the promises made by Russia at the end of the Second World War which never materialised? Today KKE was at a Greek junior school, handing out leaflets, some of the children made paper planes with them, obviously they have more common sense than their Greek supporters. There is hope.
A hell of a job
In my opinion, Mr. Papademos is doing a hell of a job as an interim political crisis manager.
After ten years, those who critize him now will understand this.
And maybe some do before the coming election.
Hans van der Schaaf
Please, not another Greek whinge -- to add to Smyrna (Greece?s fault), Cyprus (Greece?s fault) and Macedonia. The ?war damages' issue was regarded as settled, as evidenced by the 20 years or more of Greek inaction -- but Greece is never happy unless it has a few open sores running, and the more intractable, the better. Cyprus has been costing us all, via the UN, since 1974; and Macedonia is heading that way -- all pointless in the current climate.
No civil servants? perks until 2014
Civil service employees get bonuses. Good God! Salaries paid to these people should be appropriate to ensure good performance. Those who provide bad performance or are incompetent for the position they hold should be fired. Promotion across grades should be strictly on the basis of merit and depend on open competition controlled by an independent civil service commission -- as in many countries! If performance is satisfactory, an annual increment would seem appropriate but not if performance has been in adequate.
This poor Thomsen. Who the hell has a grudge against him at the IMF and EU?
Straws must have been drawn at the IMF/EU offices the day they decided who would be the poor bastard to take on Greece?s massive problems of corruption and bureaucracy, and in trying to get an utterly pathetic, useless, incompetent political elite to work for once!
Seems poor Thomsen drew the short straw! Better luck next time! The least we can do as a nation is give this guy a month?s paid holiday. At least he tried taking on the corruption and bureaucracy!
Re: Klaus Boetig
The cabal of lawyers who filed the lawsuit against Klaus Boetig should be dragged before the court themselves for heaping international ridicule on the country. If that is not a punishable offense, it should be!
Re: Illegal immigration
I want to congratulate ekathimerini?s editorial team for raising the serious issue of tackling illegal immigration. Illegal immigration is costing Greece millions each year in illegal street trading, high crime, remittances going the other way, high medical costs and above all a security threat.
I am a bit sceptical as to why all this is happening now just prior to the elections. Chrysi Avgi, which has an anti-immigrant agenda, is now polling at 3.5-4% nationally; this may have caused ND and PASOK to take action. The question remains: Where were ND and PASOK in the last 20 years? I hope this campaign does not run out of steam once the elections are over. As for the minority who want no detention centres, what better options do they offer?
Traffic accidents down
Our premises are on Kifissou Avenue and from my office window I have noticed far less traffic on the main highway this year. This is probably due to fewer cars as many citizens have kept their cars off the roads due to insurance and road tax costs. Petrol is too expensive to use for joy riding and with sales down in shops and stores and factory production down, for sure there are fewer containers and lorries needed to supply goods. Frankly, I haven?t noticed any difference in the driving skills.