50 Years Ago Today
GREEK CHILDREN: Paris, 10 – The General Assembly of the United Nations has convened to take emergency measures to repatriate abducted Greek children. The move was proposed by UN Secretary-General Trygve Lie, who asked the Assembly to make a direct request to the governments of Eastern Bloc countries, with the exception of Yugoslavia, to discuss the best way to repatriate the children. Lie also reported on the issue to the international committee of the International Red Cross, noting that approaches by the Red Cross and diplomats to Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, Romania and Hungary had either been ignored by the governments concerned or were fruitless. CONCERNING AVIATORS: The Air Force General Staff yesterday released the following statement concerning reports of the discovery of a gang of saboteurs in the Royal Air Force: These reports are a tissue of unrelated events which took place in the past and which have no connection with escapes to countries behind the Iron Curtain, or with sabotage to aircraft leading to aviation accidents. A SINGLE TRANSACTION: The money market was very cautious all this week. The water utility gold loans of 1914 and 1925 came under pressure and prices fell. There were few transactions in National, Athens and Commercial Bank stock. Yesterday there was a single transaction, for two National Bank shares. In the light of this dire state of affairs, responsible officials have resorted to the extended use of makeshift works which are somewhat reminiscent of open book fairs or the festivals of youth party organizations. Even if the country finally manages to avoid ridicule, the cost of the Olympic Games is expected to exceed the original budget by more than three times, reaching the breathtaking amount of 3 trillion drachmas. As for Athens, it seems that it will definitely miss the historical opportunity exploited by other countries such as Barcelona, which is to exploit the Games for the purpose of essentially upgrading the infrastructure and the citizens’ quality of life. There is a legend that the Thousand and One Nights were devised by an odalisque in an effort to keep her husband from killing her by entertaining him with a tale a night for 1,001 nights. In the rational West, however, the tricks of the mystic East are in vain. The responsible officials for the 2004 Olympics and, above all, the government which bears the political responsibility will need something more than beautiful fairy tales over the next thousand and one nights if they wish to avert the heavy repercussions of a looming failure.