Costly denial of the obvious

Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras’s administration took way too long to accept what everyone else saw as obvious, and it has cost the country dearly.

At first, the government didn’t want to hear about undocumented migrants and how they need to be distinguished from refugees. It wouldn’t even discuss building holding facilities for those who don’t merit protection. It reacted against NATO’s involvement in Aegean Sea patrols and was opposed to the armed forces having any role in helping with the refugee crisis.

Eventually, it woke up to reality. It now sees the need for differentiating refugees and migrants and for closed facilities. It now knows that only the military has the organizational skills required to put together complicated operations.

But many months passed before the government matured on this issue, as was the case with the negotiations with the country’s creditors. And the reason for that is Tsipras cannot control his most reactionary ministers.

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