Σάββατο, 3 Μαρτίου 2012

The Modern Thermopylae

History is a strange thing, indeed. It has the annoying habit to repeat itself. The historical repetition may appear transformed, either with different people or with altered context than the original fact, but the story remains the same. The battle of Thermopylae is the historical event that affirms the rule, in regard with the Greek debt crisis. During that battle, 300 Spartans stood their ground, and fought against the hordes of Persia, with the certainty of death not proving enough to discourage them, in their struggle to secure the freedom of Greece and the safety of their homes and families. They were led by a magnificent leader, Leonidas, under whose banner the Spartans fought heroically. The Spartans may have won the battle if it wasn't for Efialtes, a traitor who showed the Persians a path that led them behind the Spartans' lines.

How is this related to the Greek situation?

Due to the debt crisis, the Greeks were summoned to fight to save their country. Once again they answered to their call of duty to defend their homeland, and they fought like heroes. Greeks during the last two years, for a debt that was caused by corrupted politicians, suffered massive cuts on salaries, pensions, have been deprived of many fundamental rights, by losing many advantages that consolidate the social obligation of a democratic society against its citizens. Most importantly, the Greeks were deprived of their pride and their dignity, after being insulted many times by foreign mass media, and politicians and sometimes by their own government. Greeks fought at first with their government in order to rescue the Greek economy. When the Greeks realized that their government was not striving to save Greece, but our loan givers, when they realized that their government was a modern Efialtes, they started a fight against the puppets of the IMF. Then the police violence and the suppression of peaceful demonstrations, became an everyday phenomenon. Many videos show undercover policemen dressed up as hooligans, causing widespread damage to shops, and cars, making Athens a warzone. The suppression went on, by framing innocent people, by spraying everyone with chemicals, even an 85-year old symbol of Resistance against the German occupation.

Greeks continue to suffer; the austerity measures still impose, leading Greeks to unacceptable levels of poverty with the homeless people increasing in a frenzy rate, and people having to stand in lines for some crubles. Is this your way of interpreting the term "rescue"? Is this what you call "Europe"? Greeks don't feel rescued. Greeks feel betrayed, humiliated, angry and actually bankrupt. If you disagree, I challenge you to search for a job in Greece, and if you succeed which is highly unlikely, I then challenge you to make ends meet, with Greece's new basic salary (approximately 400 euros). We lost everything we had, and still Greece will face bankruptcy.

Sir Winston Churchill said that: "Hence we will not say that Greeks fight like heroes, but that heroes fight like Greeks"

We would really have no problem to suffer all these, even for a debt that was not created by us, if the sacrifices we made, were indeed to save our country. They are unfortunately fruitless, since the only efforts made by our state, is to sell out our country. People in Greece treat the politicians as traitors. The reason is simple. The word “Greek” used to lie next to terms like “Philosophy”, “Democracy”, “Theater”, “Arts”, “Revolution”. Now it lies only next to “Debt”. Another reason that Greeks are betrayed, is that the politicians have created a system, through which they can embezzle money, and never face any consequence. Is it reasonable, in a state that corruption is evident, that nobody is liable for these crimes?

It is an irony that democracy dies in the state that it was born. The IMF and the EU, behave as the modern colonial powers. They demand of the political parties to commit that they will impose the measures of the memoranda, and that they will continue the ongoing policy. WHAT IS THE POINT OF CONDUCTING ELECTIONS IF WE ARE NOT ABLE TO CHANGE ECONOMIC POLICY? This road is mistaken. It has been followed in many countries and it failed with disastrous effects for the countries that implemented measures imposed by the international organizations. They create debts, by giving loans to states that cannot repay them, and then using the international organisations, set impossible salvation goals, so that the countries seem like constantly failing. The goals the IMF set for Greece, were unrealistic, and even if they were realistic, they were on the wrong direction, since the austerity measures, stopped the fund fluctuation in the market, with the consequent reduction of incoming funds of the State.

People of the world, in this fight for democracy, in this fight for freedom and independence we want you on our side. We don't want your pity. We don't want your mercy. We need you on our side to fight together. We are the nation that overturned the political status of the world by establishing democracy. . When the birthplace of the finest civilization the world ever experienced, the country to which we ought what makes life superior and more beautiful, faces such an attack, the place of all real people is by her side. (Henry Miller)

We led by example, we gave you the light; we showed you the way to think and the way to fight. Now it's your turn!

If you don't want to fight on our side, as an amortization of the debt the world owes to the Greeks, just realize that Greece is now an ongoing experiment. When they are done with us, they will need some new toys. And then you will want us on your side ,as we will have the experience to help you fight the capitalistic forces of enslavement. If the people of the world don't unite, then we endanger the rights earned since the age of French Revolution. Capitalism enslaves many countries with the army of austerity and police violence. Solidarity is no longer an option. It is a duty.

We will emerge victorious once again. Against all odds, as we always did, we will overthrow this tyranny, with or without you. The enemy is united by profit. We must be united by solidarity and the will for freedom and self-determination. In these Thermopylae, there is no room for Efialtes. It's only us, and a historical duty for resistance.

"First Greece taught us that free men can be brave, and that no defeat is meant to last forever." (Albert Camus)

Liberté, égalité, fraternité for a world that belongs to its people.

Spiros Papadas


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