OPINION

Commentary

Developments on the military front in Afghanistan are dramatic as the Northern Alliance and US air strikes have forced the Taleban forces into a disorderly retreat. The cities fell almost bloodlessly amid a wave of desertions; resistance was scarce and anxious calls for help fell on deaf ears. The collapse of the theocratic regime was so swift that it even took the Americans by surprise. A war which had originally appeared to be drawn out will probably be decided within a few days. Clearly, events have shown once again that myths are disproportionally more potent than reality. Facts show that the Taleban regime, which was based on crude violence, fear and prohibitions and which was connected to atrocious acts such as the one on September 11, was veiled with a mythical cloak and as it bragged, invoking God, it induced awe and seemed powerful. Like the military dictatorship in Greece, the Taleban regime collapsed under the first strikes, after it experienced the first attack, for it was nothing but an armed and fanatical theocratic junta that used crude oppression and violence to control a population of 26 million that later showed no sign of mercy. One could say that such conspiratorial, oppressive and terrorist systems are surrounded by a huge myth mainly because of the unbelievable events from which they emerge. Their violent methods and strange and irrational practices shock and instill fear among their people. Shock and fear are enough to create a myth which then gets propagated, becomes ever more distorted and complicated, and which grows in size as it spreads from mouth to mouth over the course of time. Many people believe that a similar myth also surrounds the action of terrorist organizations in Greece. This is a myth based on exceptional events and a mysterious plot which, combined with political and ideological elements, takes on an unprecedented dimension beyond the understanding of common people. When their identities are disclosed, if this ever happens, we might be surprised by the small size, the simple structure, the tactics and, of course, the faces.