The big gamble

With the advertisements relating directly or indirectly to our lives during the Olympics multiplying in the countdown to the Games, I remembered a recent conversation I had with the Israeli ambassador to Greece on the subject. As a representative of another demographically small country, he spoke neither from a position of strength nor didactically regarding the organization of the Games. But he made a very interesting observation. He maintained that the Olympics represent a unique opportunity for Greece (irrespective of the impact of their great expense on the country) to show the world that it is more than just a pleasant holiday destination, and that it is capable of organizing a complex venture. If Greece does succeed, it will be sending out the message that it is able to do serious business – that it is dynamic and ready for fruitful cooperation with foreign investors. In this way, it will be able to lay claim to a portion of international investment which it has been trying to attract for many years but with little success. So, irrespective of critical reports in the foreign press, delays to project completion, and the billions of euros which have been wasted, the goal remains the same – to ensure that there are no serious problems over the 20 days of the Olympic Games…

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