OPINION

Realism and moderation

Before the Iraq war began, we said that the US-led campaign would cause a storm and bring about sweeping changes on the world scene. Developments so far have ushered in a new era, even if many in our country refuse to see the new reality. US imperium was imposed on Iraq and will quickly spread across the broader region, regardless of the complexities that the US military presence could cause in Iraq. The states in the West and the East are still trying to adjust to the new order which has affected their geostrategic interests. Turkey is the first to feel the consequences of this. Ankara’s role is compromised and is showing a reflex for spasmodic reaction. Syria is expected to come under pressure soon, and so are the other Arab countries. The Balkans will come back into the limelight under pressure from outstanding issues in Serbia, Kosovo and Skopje. Europe is also mobilizing. The British will take initiatives and seek a reinforced role in the relations between the EU and the USA. At the same time, the French, the Germans and the Russians are searching for ways to influence developments and to find a place in the nascent environment. The EU members will on Wednesday ratify the biggest wave of EU expansion in Athens, inheriting the divisions that were underscored by the Iraq war. Developments are coming down thick and fast, highlighting how many things this deeply divisive war has changed. This is the new reality – whether we like it or not. A reality that most of Greece’s political elite have failed to grasp, insisting on reacting as it did in the early days of the conflict. Some even reached the point of declaring next Wednesday as a «day of mourning,» ignoring even Cyprus’s historic EU accession. However, they are merely deluding themselves. The return to the path of realism and moderation is mandated, unpopular as it may appear.