OPINION

Silent second wave

Government officials and those close to them are maintaining that a reshuffle to «radically» alter the government, bringing many old faces back to the fore, would neither be based on any political logic nor actually achieve anything. It is difficult to disagree with this assessment. The way things are in the ruling PASOK party today, what could even a sweeping reshuffle achieve? What contribution to the government could be made by any collective new face just a year before the end of a second four-year term of the «pro-reform» PASOK? And how much would this help the prime minister who is currently trying to check a tendency toward navel gazing in his party and to improve the performance of his ministers in sectors burdened with pending issues? All that is being said by close associates of Costas Simitis regarding so-called initiatives being planned by the premier strike us as so much hot air. As for Simitis himself, he is indignant about one thing and worried about another; he makes «recommendations» (and «stern» ones at that) to various government officials; he is not sure whether he wants a reshuffle; he refuses to be pressured. According to sources, Simitis is even eager to exchange ideas with members of a so-called second wave of reformists because these «new faces» belong to that small group of Simitis loyalists who sympathize with his conviction that nothing great can be achieved with the current PASOK.