National interest first

Late Greek statesman Constantine Karamanlis was the politician who proclaimed with absolute certainty that Greece is a part of Western Europe and actively lobbied for it to be inducted into what was then known as the European Economic Community (EEC).

Though fully committed to the country’s Western orientation, he was also the politician who made bold overtures to Moscow and also to French leader Charles de Gaulle at a time when a lot was hanging in the geopolitical balance both for Greece and the rest of the world.

Ever since, Greek governments have tended to pursue the same approach followed by Karamanlis back in the 1970s and 1980s. They allow policy to be shaped by the belief that Greece’s place in Europe is a fact but also that good ties with countries such as Russia, with which we share a close bond, and economic powerhouse China are imperative and serve the good of the national interest.

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