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Greek PM: It’s Everybody’s Duty to Preserve Democracy

An important message and measures against violence were announced by Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou on Wednesday. Speaking at the Ministers’ Council, Papandreou urged all political forces and all citizens to guard the democratic normality and the unimpeded functioning of the Republic. “It’s not just the crisis that generates the phenomena of violence against politicians  or even  ordinary citizens. They are encouraged and motivated by extreme political groups, by those seeking political role and are supported by media. We must all take responsibility.”

The Prime Minister pointed out that the phenomena of violence, whether organized or spontaneous, are not accepted by the state and noted that historically, whenever the was an anti-parliament movement it led to  undemocratic aberration.

Mr. Papandreou stressed that “the effort of ideological terrorism has no place anywhere, neither in universities or at the squares.”

Papandreou announced the establishment of cross-party committee to discuss policies and measures to safeguard the institutions, to  co-ordinate the operation of state, to prevent the violence and target the strengthening of democratic institutions. 

“The state can not accept either organized or spontaneous violence. These phenomena maim democracy and create conditions for more violence and injustice against the citizens, “noted the Prime Minister and wondered whether to accept the force of violence. “This is not Democracy, this is barbarism.” 

Greece’s Prime Minister stressed also that “the basic task of all is to guard the democratic normality, the unimpeded functioning of democracy, reason, dialogue and freedom of society.” At this point Papandreou quoted Voltaire and said ” “I may disagree with what you say, but I will  defend until death your right to express your views freely.”  Papandreou said also other important things about democracy, you can read the rest of his speech in in.gr .

Translating and editing Papandreou’s  speech against violence and the necessity to defend the Democracy (incl his historical examples) I must ask: Is our precious Greek Democracy in danger? By whom? By the violent extremists? Why arent’ they arrested then? I assume this can be quickly done long before any cross-part committee can be set. Or not?

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4 comments

  1. Perphaps Papandreou should have this conversation with the police. Naturally, he wants to blame “extreme political groups, by those seeking political role and are supported by media.” That way he can hang onto power as the only reasonable alternative. Who has committed more violence this past month than the police (protecting the passage of his midterm plan)?

  2. This is a joke, isn’t it?

  3. No no, arrests are not in the interest of… yes of whom? Good question. But great GREAT initiative to set up a cross-part committee to… talk? To walk away from? To do what? Play more political games? “You don’t participate so you are…?”

    WE are The State. He, you, me… all together. When a Prime Minister starts talking about what “The State” can or can not tolerate, he is guilty of depersonalization of Greece or he is talking in the third person singular about himself, but either way we are in deeper sh** than I thought…

  4. Several questions

    1. Does ‘everybody’s duty’ include the PM’s? This government was not elected on a mandate of austerity measures and continues to ignore the wishes of its own electorate? Preserved what democracy?

    2. Is parliament merely rubber-stamping decisions decided elsewhere? Does it have any power or authority left to make decisions? What democracy is he preserving?

    3. What is democratic normality? Is he implying we should guard against democratic extremism? Too much democracy is dangerous?

    4. “The state can not accept either organized or spontaneous violence”. So why does he ignore the statements made by Amnesty International about policing?

    5. What the hell is ideological terrorism? Am I an ideological terrorist for disagreeing? Is it a thought that terrorises a dogma? Next step,thought police?

    He quoted Voltaire: “I may disagree with what you say, but I will defend until death your right to express your views freely.” Disagree with me but stop defending and gassing me to death.