This year’s events marking the anniversary of the November 17, 1973 Athens Polytechnic student uprising against the military dictatorship have given us food for thought.
A well-thought-out and well-implemented plan by the authorities to guard the area around the Polytechnic and the big annual march had an evident upshot: It allowed thousands of citizens to take part in the commemoration march. They were able to march without being interrupted or threatened by the usual troublemakers who usurp such peaceful events to their own ends.
The phantasmagoria of violence we have seen in previous years tended to take all of the public’s attention away from the main event, poisoning the memory that it is intended to mark.
What this year’s measures achieved was to safeguard the anniversary.