OPINION

The real challenge for PASOK

The need for a modern and powerful center-left party in the Greek political spectrum has been repeatedly highlighted by this newspaper.

Socialist PASOK is facing a major identity crisis at this point in time.

It would be a huge mistake, both for PASOK as well as for the country in general, if the principal target of the party?s newly appointed leadership were to rally its hard-core grass-roots electoral base only.

Under the leadership of George Papandreou the Socialists paid a hefty price for being held hostage by the party?s hard-liners, who undermined every single effort for reform.

The country?s main parties need to modernize the way they work and follow the example of a number of their European counterparts who managed to wean their parties from unions and vested interests, and detach themselves from a paleolithic dedication to family. By doing so they succeeded in winning over dynamic figures of society and the business world.

This is the challenge facing Evangelos Venizelos today, as opposed to winning back PASOK?s faithful.