Alexis Papachelas ALEXIS PAPACHELAS

Worrying scenario

COMMENT

TAGS: Politics

It would be laughable, were it not so tragic. Greece’s leftist-led government is battling against imaginary enemies which, it says, seek to destabilize it.

Sure, the administration has good reason to be concerned. Some of the media that supported SYRIZA while it was still in the opposition have now turned against its government.

The once all-powerful officials are now caught up in anguish. This is not a strange pattern in politics. The difference is that Greece’s political-business-media system is not becoming of a normal European country but rather is uncomfortably reminiscent of the Wild West.

Also, since the start of the country’s debt crisis, political time has become extremely dense.

Behind the curtain and the official pledges to curb corruption, this government handed out different promises to different people. It made a number of dodgy alliances that left several interests satisfied – but not all. The former operate in the usual greedy fashion, and continue to ask for more. The latter know how to exert pressure to pursue their own ends.

Meanwhile, ruling officials are demonizing the escalating protests and assaults against their fellow MPs and ministers.

When they encouraged or even participated in similar demonstrations, it was all about defending free speech (for example in the protests against the education system reforms put forward by former New Democracy minister Marietta Giannakou four years ago).

Are they sensing that the virus of unchecked frustration and violent behavior has escaped the lab and is no longer containable? Are they concerned because the orchestrators of indignation, as it were, are no longer on their side? And if the nascent wave of reaction is being instigated by specific interests, could we not assume that the same applies to the big wave of indignation that brought the country so close to exiting the euro area? All these are fair questions, and demand answers.

Above all, however, this is about our democracy. I may disagree on every level with this government, but I do not believe it would be good for the country if it were to fall under pressure from some strong interests or a domino effect of uncontrolled barracking.

Any opposition party that dares play this game will be shooting itself in the foot. It will only become prey to vested interests. The country will degenerate into an ungovernable “jungle.”

It is not as a remote scenario as it may at first appear.

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