It was once a tribe, a nation, ανάδελφο (without a brother nation), as was once said, one that would never exist again in history. A nation of people who were mixed in the depths of the ages with other tribes, who arrived either peacefully or as conquerors. So many races that it would have been reasonable to expect the nation to lose its identity, its language, and all that united it.
And yet, contrary to any logic, it always managed to overcome even the toughest moments of his existence. It was saved by the “God from the machine,” the “Deus ex machina,” something much bigger than mere chance, something that touches to the limits of the supernatural, of the Divine.
This God saved it from the Persians, saved it from the Venetians, the Saracen pirates, the Crusaders, the Turks, the Italians, the Germans, and many other conquerors. He saved it even from total destruction when a Greek was killing a fellow Greek.
This God, however, has resided inside the hearts and minds of the people of this nation. For centuries, they have carried this God within them, manifested through their education, their language, their love for their neighbor, their friend, their relative, the foreigner next to them, their dignity, their pride, their hospitality, their sense of justice, their pride.
But times were bad, and the traitors who were previously unable to harm Greece began to chew at everything that made this nation possible to exist. It took some years to complete what they did not succeeded in doing for centuries.
They had to degrade education first, to transform universities that were previously a place of education and though into spaces for the growth and development of partisan hacks and future political party personnel.
It took years, over a whole generation, to corrupt society via bribery and the giving away of massive amounts of public funds.
Another, foreign way of life, one of laziness, easy money, and decadent pseudo-culture was systematically promoted through the miserable lifestyle magazines and through trash TV programming.
The same people that were once proud and stoic, have been transformed via a paradigm shift, a degradation of values. Today, what’s applauded is winning a prize on a televised reality show.
Once these foreign influenced managed to mislead this nation, they started to steal what they could. And the theft kept growing. But stealing the country’s economic resources was not enough for them. They had to steal the Greek people’s future too. In the end, they managed to steal 100 years of financial resources, almost two lifetimes, dooming four generations to indebtedness.
All this has taken place while the people have remained numb. And when they have reacted, the system has responded by cheating the populate with corrupt and rotten leaders, or quite simply by terrorizing the public, going as far as to burn people alive.
Nothing remains for those people but their dignity. They prefer to die of hunger instead of standing in a queue for two hours for a bag of oranges. They commit suicide in order to escape humiliation in the eyes of society, or barring that, they emigrate.
But even there, living in a foreign country thousand of miles away, Greece continues to hurt you with all the misery and pain that you continue to see in your homeland.
As for those who govern? They ship in immigrants from all parts of the world, unhappy and desperate people, Islamists, fundamendalists, whatever they may be. The powers that be do not care; they just count heads so that they can turn the country into a parody of a state, a protectorate, a “wild west” for every kind of criminal, where the most brutal villains remain free because prisons are overcrowded for years now.
And the rest of us? Those who did not leave the country or die?
Today they vainly await a Deus ex machina, sitting on their sofas or in front of the television. They are arguing if the currency, which they soon will not have in their pockets, is a drachma or a euro.
Some of them are becoming poorer day by day, others continue to resist even as they become increasingly impoverished, while a few have become richer during the crisis and believe they will manage to weather the storm. The latter is as likely as someone believing that because they purchased a ticket for a luxury cabin, they will be saved when the ship is sunk.
And yet it’s so simple. If we look deep inside, Deus ex machina still resides within each of us. It is our inheritance, one that we have carried for thousands of years and which has not been lost despite of the stubbornness of each traitor and each conqueror. Our pride, our Greek “filotimo,” our rights, these are values that cannot be stolen, no matter how many taxes the powers that be impose. Let’s fight for these values. The few who are wealthy and well-fed are afraid of the hungry masses, for it is the hungry who always win in the end.
Today, on this March 25th, let’s not complete their job for them. Let’s not shut our eyes and surrender to our chains.
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