Ovi -
we cover every issue
Apopseis magazine  
Ovi Bookshop - Free Ebook
Ovi Greece
Ovi Language
Ovi on Facebook
WordsPlease - Inspiring the young to learn
Murray Hunter: Opportunity, Strategy and Entrepreneurship
International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement
BBC News :   - 
iBite :   - 
Proud to be Greek (?)
by Dimitra Karantzeni
2011-12-09 07:49:41
Print - Comment - Send to a Friend - More from this Author
DeliciousRedditFacebookDigg! StumbleUpon
The last months, every day in Greece, is a new day, but this comes with the worst meaning possible. And that is simply because, no one, and I’m talking about the citizens of my country, hardly knows whether new decisions, legislations or politics, announced as new mandatory and inevitable measures, arising from our debt obligations and in general, our economical and political dependency from the ‘so called’ Troika, will plunge him deeply in misery. This article neither aims to analyze once again the characteristics of this situation and judge the EU’s, or the IMF’s efforts to save Greece, nor to just describe the insufficiency of successive Greek governments to lead the country away from the impasse. My intention is to share with you the thoughts of everyone surrounding me here in Greece, and even more, to ask you to mentally put yourselves in our position, in order to better understand how it feels to come to the conclusion that you are so embarrassed of your national identity.

Greek people have already oppressed their needs and ambitions, forgotten their dreams and abandoned their beliefs in the name of financial salvation, living in a situation that they have never asked for, being parts of a unity that seems to have wasted their years of efforts in order to falsely present a ‘Europeanized’, developed Greece, a fictitious image, a ‘’bubble’’, structured on the basis of the arrogant will of the latest governments, since the early 1990s, as well as their provocative ambition to be recognized as equal members of the powerful, antagonistic Eurozone.

Today, the bubble has burst, in a way that no one expected or was even prepared to face. People protest every day, with every power and mean that has been left to them, as they see that everything they have safeguarded with collective struggles, such as their employment and educational rights, their ability to raise decently their children within a secure, free, democratic environment, has been literally stolen from them forever. The consequences of clientelism, of the endless exploitation of every kind of political power, the manipulation of voters and essentially, the complete humiliation of the institutions of the Greek political system, are easily recognizable in the way our politicians play hide and seek when it comes to undertaking responsibilities, or explaining why nothing is really viable today, or why our opportunities to recover vanish into thin air.

One could state that the crisis is global, that we are all parts of a ‘domino effect’ and that when strong economies such as the French and the German ones, are put in the question, then how could it be possible for Greece, to be able to react immediately and overcome the financial crisis. Nevertheless, in my opinion, this is only a shortsighted approach of the Greek problem. Greece is described by a number of specifities that make all its citizens, angrily doubt their right to be proud to be Greeks, to be able to answer vigorously to their critics, to all those who clearly laugh at ‘’poor disorganized, chaotic Greece’’ and offend our ancestors, to treat us more or less like beggars. It is impossible for Greeks to stand up for their nation, to protect their fundamental rights and beliefs as well as underline the limits of the outside intervention, concerning the country’s national solidarity. Greek politicians have not only defalcated the country’s wealth but also, they’ve taken away both the dignity and self-respect of its people. Greeks are not a strong entity anymore; they are just weak, puzzled, devastated units that cry for their uncertain future, for a prospect of life that everyone would admit that no one deserves. To be honest, I’m not quite sure whether I could enumerate five or more reasons why I should be proud of my country, why I should stay here and try hard to help my country, why should I trust anyone or anything that promises solutions or better days for us and our children. 

I may sound desperate, but I’m only realistic, describing the thoughts and anguishes of my fellow citizens, who feel completely abandoned, condemned to pay hard for their share of responsibility to this situation, to support and elect for lots of decades seemingly promising leaders that led Greece, within vicious circles of switches of political power, step by step, to suicide.

I guess that is, at last, the modern way of public oppression, not to directly violate our freedom, but subcutaneously destroy all the components who synthesize our common identity and all the things that represent us, as the only thing that commonly represents Greeks today is our unwillingness to belong, where we have to belong. So, no, the ugly truth is, that I’m not sure if I’m proud to be Greek right now, or whether I am going to be in the near future.

Print - Comment - Send to a Friend - More from this Author

Get it off your chest
 (comments policy)

Emanuel Paparella2011-12-10 02:54:45
On the other hand Ms. Karantzeni, one cannot be very proud either for the actions of E.U. leaders such as Sarkozi, Merkel, Cameron who are now trying to put humpty dumpty back together. Cameron especially has shown that when push comes to shove the union is expandable. It seems that the English are nostalgic for the good old days of colonialism and imperialism... Were these so called leaders who are in reality visionless political and intellectual pigmies, really interested in a viable union, they would be less concerned with protecting national sovereignty and special interests and the greedy banking system, and more interested in advocating the sharing of sacrifices. So, I would not feel ashamed of the people in any of the nations that comprise the EU union; they are the victims. I would rather feel ashamed and not particularly proud of those leaders who have deprived the people of leadership and vision, something that the EU founding fathers gifted Europe with and is now all but forgotten. That vision includes the idea that continual growth privileging the wealthy of our society is not sustainable given the global ecological and economic realities that confront us all. Had these leaders been real leaders they would have by now proposed a new social paradigm rather than fixing an unsustainable broken one. So, there is plenty of blame to go around and I for one would not focus on the people but on their leaders, that is where the crisis begins and ends.

Dimitra Karantzeni2011-12-10 12:19:11
Of course, Mr Paparella, I agree with your statement that the crisis derives from the leaders, which are nowadays characterised by controversial political gravity and quality, compared to the spiritual founding fathers of the EU. I'm not ashamed of the people, but of the reality that greek national leaders have deliberately created for decades, and its impact on the Greek people, which is crucial enough to focus on. Furthermore, as national political systems somehow consist a micrography of the international political scene, we should not treat them as victims,removing their great share of responsibility and denying that their political ''gluttony'' for power and personal wealth has contributed significantly to the the international instability we face right now.

© Copyright CHAMELEON PROJECT Tmi 2005-2008  -  Sitemap  -  Add to favourites  -  Link to Ovi
Privacy Policy  -  Contact  -  RSS Feeds  -  Search  -  Submissions  -  Subscribe  -  About Ovi