In a letter to the editor of The New York Times, the chief executive of the American Jewish Committee, David Harris, and the executive director of the Hellenic American Leadership Council, Endy Zemenides responded to an op-ed earlier in the week titled “The Adults Are Back in Charge of Greece. And They Are Really Right-Wing” and written by Matthaios Tsimitakis, a journalist who worked in the press office of former prime minister Alexis Tsipras under the previous SYRIZA administration.
In their letter, the writers take issue with Tsimitakis' accusation that the recently elected New Democracy administration “far from being a moderate, liberal force, seems to be a right-wing party with pronounced authoritarian tendencies,” responding that “Kyriakos Mitsotakis, the right-of-center Greek prime minister in office for four weeks after decisively winning a national election, deserves the opportunity to govern before being judged,” and accusing Tsimitakis of denying the prime minister that opportunity.
They also dismiss the journalist's accusation of nepotism as “disingenuous,” reminding that Mitsotakis' nephew, Kostas Bakoyannis, was elected mayor of Athens a month before the general elections brought ND to power.
They also take issue with Tsimitakis' barbs against Agriculture Minister Makis Voridis, stressing that Voridis has twice apologized to the Jewish community for past comments regarding the Holocaust.
“At a time when inward-looking populism is making inroads in Europe and beyond, a pro-European and pro-American leader was elected in Greece. He should be judged based on actual performance, not politicized prognostication,” write Harris and Zemenides.