Editorial: Days of tensions
Meeting places and bases for illegal forays that operated within universities and in Athens neighbourhoods were reclaimed.
These and the coming days will be tense, as the commemoration of the 1973 Athens Polytechnic student uprising has traditionally offered opportunities to incite such tensions.
There are mainly marginal circles which remain charged up and imagine uprisings even today.
They remain deluded in an entirely different environment that cannot be compared with the dark years of the colonels’ dictatorship.
They are the same unrepentant circles that never reconciled themselves with democracy and its conventions and continue to battle it and treat it as a continuation of the “junta of ‘73”.
Today’s conditions, however are entirely different and Greek society – especially after the bitter conditions of the great economic crisis – is directly opposed to such absolutely problematic approaches that reveal an ignorance of history.
Over the last days these circles were pressured in an organised manner by authorities.
University buildings that for years had been occupied by marginal groups were reclaimed. Meeting places and bases for illegal forays that operated within universities and in Athens neighbourhoods were reclaimed.
At the same time, a terrorist group directly linked to these circles was rooted out.
The organised operational plan of authorities stirred an intense reaction from the groups and forces that were under scrutiny but also groups from the extra-parliamentary left, which insist on considering university asylum, which they themselves trampled over, to be inviolable.
Unfortunately, a segment of the main opposition which until yesterday opposed these circles was drawn to this paroxysm of conflict.
Guilt and other syndromes as well as political affinities imposed a stance of support or even exploitation by SYRIZA cadres, who were denounced as foreign and hostile elements by the occupiers and the supporters of these ossified and marginal circles.
It was a lesson for many of the cadres of the until recently ruling left who saw the contradictions of their policy unfolding before their eyes.
In any event, long-term tensions were triggered and the coming days will not be easy. Everyone must act with prudence and calm.
What everyone, whether they are involved in the issue or not, must realise is that the economic crisis has changed everything including people’s consciences.
The endurance and toleration of Greek society are becoming exhausted.
Citizens want universities that are open and in operation.
They will not tolerate sacrificing resources and energy to send their children to university when they realise that some people out there are not disposed to reconcile themselves with the democratic status quo and want to forcefully impose their views or because they have become habituated to such behaviours or believe that everyone should live like that.
Greece has entered another phase in which everyone must recognise – especially those who act in the name of liberty – that one cannot ignore or trample over the freedoms of others.