OPINION

The Empire strikes back

The way in which the local media have presented the exertion of American pressure on Greece’s prime minister may have contained elements of exaggeration but it has not been the product of journalists’ imagination. The fact is that the recent CBS television program was not an isolated incident but rather one in a long line is demonstrated by similar mud-slinging attacks in the past. It is manifest that the negative view of Greece is the rule and not the exception in the United States. There is no doubt that it is offensive and deeply irritating to have to prove the obvious, but even the most ridiculous allegations acquire political weight when leveled by the American «empire.» This is even more the case after the terrorist blitz of September 11 which included, among other repercussions, the loss of influence of more sober voices within the American government. This was also highlighted by the fact that the Republican government readily succumbed to the temptation of adopting a grossly hegemonic policy, even toward its NATO allies. Similarly, it is worth noting that the EU has clearly avoided distancing itself from US policy and resisting US interference in its affairs. Developments concerning the nascent Euroforce are a clear indication of this. The current period witnesses a process of imposing an imperial model on the handling of global affairs. It is no coincidence that Washington is no longer interested in preserving a polite facade even in cases where it can do so without harming its interests. Similarly, it is no coincidence that the USA is more and more unwilling to accept international rules and legal commitments even if, at this point, they actually serve its policies. Washington wants a completely free hand at all times so that it can act as it sees fit. It is essentially trying to conclude the process of establishing a pax americana. It is obvious that, faced with this grim situation, Greece cannot merely engage in rhetoric on respect for international law and non-intervention in domestic affairs. Unfortunately, this rhetoric is growing feebler. Instead, Greece needs a flexible policy to promote its national interests which will take new developments into serious consideration and which will shed its normal, childish illusions.