OPINION

Commentary

And now what? Where is the world heading? Everyone seems to agree that after September 11 the world’s political, economic and social landscape will be radically transformed. A new climate will gradually evolve around security issues which will extend far beyond American borders and spread across the world, affecting countless people’s lives. First, the nascent military operations will, according to current indications, be extensive and will target terrorists’ training camps not only in Afghanistan but also in other hostile states. This interventionism will have an obvious geostrategic impact, as it will give rise to new groupings and alliances. Furthermore, all countries will be pressed to adopt stricter police measures and, of course, join the US campaign against terrorism. Official circles in Athens believe that in the coming period they will be forced to follow very strict guidelines on airport security and, in general, measures concerning the movement of Greeks and foreigners, as our country is seen as a transit point for people that could include dangerous elements. Public Order Ministry officials have received clear signals. They realize that the US effort will be continuous and will aim at eliminating all sources of terrorism, which in turn will result in ever stronger pressure to deal with the issue of local terrorist organizations. Such activity seem to indicate the view that police measures will intensify. It follows that European Union officials believe that, from now on, the line of distinction between military and police activity will be blurred. The economic repercussions are already evident. Stock market losses worldwide are estimated at about 15 percent, and no one knows what will happen when Wall Street opens on Monday. Also, no one can foresee the consequences from the strain these events will put on the process of globalization, or the worsening of the climate of recession which is likely to prevail in the US. All indications are that the world we live in will change greatly. This fact leaves no room for relaxation. The political elite should prepare itself and the country before it’s too late.