CULTURE

Wishes for peace in the new year and beyond

The first Olympic victory for Greece is surely the signing by 190 member states of the United Nations of a resolution, submitted by Greece at the initiative of Foreign Minister George Papandreou, for an Olympic Truce in accordance with ancient practice, on November 3, 2003 in New York at the UN headquarters during the 58th General Assembly. This great 1,200-year-old tradition has inspired a greeting card sending «Wishes for Peace in 2004 and Beyond,» from the International Olympic Truce Center based in Olympia, Lausanne and Athens (address Zappeion Hall, 105 57 Athens, Greece, tel 0030-210.331.6136). The subtitle of the greeting reads: «Sport will not impose peace. But it might inspire it,» with the hope that «if we can have peace for 16 days, then maybe, just maybe, we can have it forever.» We hope that the five Olympic circles will put an end to the smoke and destruction. Meanwhile, scenarios regarding the successor to Prime Minister Costas Simitis as head of PASOK point to George Papandreou becoming the country’s next prime minister as well. In politics, and ahead of the elections, truces are not usually successful.