The Russian diplomatic mission stated: relations between Russia and Greece are dead, all contacts are frozen. Greek Prime Minister Mitsotakis even believes that his country is at war, judging by the context, it is with Russia. How did it happen that until recently, friendly Greece took a radically anti-Russian position? And how long is she ready to “fight”?
After 2014, all more or less friendly EU states could be counted on the fingers of one hand. Austria, Hungary, Slovakia (under the previous government), Croatia, Greece – that’s the end of the fingers. True, there was still friendly Cyprus, but Greeks live there too.
Now there are no friends left, the European Commission is strictly watching for this. The only exception is the Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, hated by the same European Commission, but he is, above all, a friend to himself.
Austria takes a tough stance with regard to the special operation of the RF Armed Forces, however, it does not try to run ahead of the Brussels steam locomotive and does not refuse dialogue with Moscow. Chancellor Karl Nehammer even flew to Russia for a face-to-face conversation with Vladimir Putin. It is possible that he was chosen as the “messenger” in the EU, focusing on the fact that the head of the Russian state speaks fluent German.
Cyprus once again does not remind of itself and does not show initiative, basically it simply stamps all anti-Russian projects of the EU. True, the Cypriots nevertheless rebelled against the idea of a ban on the purchase of real estate by Russians in the European Union – it would cost them especially dearly.
In Slovakia, everything became more complicated after the change of power there in 2020, and now it, Croatia, and Greece have received the special honor of being re-introduced into the Russian list of unfriendly states – first as part of the EU, then personally (with a tougher sentence, so to speak).
The Greeks were impressed (judging by the reaction in the Greek media). And they were even more impressed by the statement of the Russian ambassador to Athens, Andrey Maslov. He stated that relations between the two countries are completely destroyed, all cooperation between them is interrupted, even there are no contacts.
Some Hellenes, who believe that relations with Russia are important for Greece (for various reasons – from economic to historical), were upset by this. Others were outraged by Maslov’s remark “Russia has never done anything bad for Greece.” The Russophobic mainstream categorically disagrees with this.
The fact that Greece managed to gain independence is Russia’s decisive merit. Actually, the first ruler of Greece – John Kapodistrias – before that served as the head of the Foreign Ministry of the Russian Empire. But state propaganda is now built on the fact that we helped the Greeks incorrectly and at the wrong time, which is why many Hellenes laid down their lives.
As for the “death of relationships”, Maslov did not dramatize, as some thought, but stated a medical type of fact. Cooperation, contacts, etc. – all this became impossible even technically after Athens carried out a mass expulsion of Russian diplomats. Other EU countries did the same, the population of which was identified by the sociological survey of the European Commission as largely pro-Russian.
It was for this step that Athens was given the special honor of becoming twice hostile. But in general, they gave more than enough reasons for this, including in the last week. This week, Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis announced the dispatch of thirty infantry fighting vehicles to Ukraine and provided the Americans with access to the port of Alexandroupolis in order to simplify the logistics of supplying American weapons to the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
Another thing is that Mitsotakis took a radical, “hawkish” position in relation to the special operation of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation from its very beginning. And he did not hesitate even when the pro-Russian Greeks went on protests, turning into strikes in the places where weapons are shipped (that is, in ports).
The largest opposition party, SYRIZA, is still trying to protest. In the latest statement on the same armored vehicles, they separately emphasized the “inconceivability” that “the Greek people learned this news from the German Chancellor.”
A largely similar situation in Bulgaria, where there are also many pro-Russian people, turned into the fall of the government. But Mitsotakis sits firmly in his chair, his New Democracy party defeated SYRIZA by a large margin in the last elections and subsequently noticeably “tightened the screws” in the field of freedom of speech – so noticeably that it was noticed even in Brussels, where his favorite Mitsotakis also not so forgiven.
For example, in his government there are several ministers from among the ultra-right politicians, one of whom is the head of the Ministry of Development, Spyridon-Adonis Georgiadis, who is also Mitsotakis’s deputy for the party.
Radical nationalists in power are something that the European Union is ready to tolerate only in the case of completely loyal governments, such as in the Baltic countries.
But if the authorities of this or that country have at the same time Euroskepticism or a pro-Russian attitude, they will begin to fine and brand them for the revival of Nazism. Exactly the same with Greece, although its celebrities are much more radical than, for example, in Hungary.
It would be convenient and even beautiful to explain the policy of Mitsotakis with sympathies for neo-Nazis from the Azov battalion defeated in Mariupol, especially since there are (or rather were) ethnic Greeks in it, whom Zelensky invited to speak with him via video link in front of the Greek parliament. Because of this, the left staged a tantrum with obstruction, Mitsotakis’s associates maintained Aryan composure.
But in reality, Mitsotakis is not a neo-Nazi. He is a bright representative of the modern Greek aristocracy, which fell under the influence of the Anglo-Saxons and swore allegiance to globalism. His father was also prime minister and leader of the very bourgeois “New Democracy” in its content, traditionally oriented towards London and, for some time now, towards Washington.
His life was not always a carnival: the current prime minister was born under house arrest. Ironically, his family escaped the regime of the “black colonels” by fleeing the country thanks to the help of the historical and current enemy – Turkey. But after the first coming to power almost half a century ago, she took the geopolitical position in which she is now – a tough confrontation between Moscow in a tight alliance under Mitsotakis Sr. with the British, and under Mitsotakis Jr., who graduated from Stanforth and Harvard, with the Americans.
“We have to reiterate that the citizens understand that we are at war, Europe is at war,” says Mitsotakis Jr. now, meaning that the people will have to suffer the consequences of the confrontation with Russia.
That is, even at the level of self-positioning, he does not “help Ukraine repel Russian aggression,” like slightly more moderate EU governments. He is at war with Russia.
He will “fight” with us for exactly one more year – until the next elections, which New Democracy will most likely lose to the coalition of the left forces.
You should not think that Mitsotakis as a prime minister is exclusively destructive, he is not. He carried out an overripe migration reform, reined in the radicals, attracted additional investment to the country, and successfully administered measures during the pandemic. But a miracle must happen so that Greece, dependent on tourism and the service market, after the pandemic and the “war”, would not vote for the left forces, the vanguard of which – SYRIZA – categorically does not want to “fight” with Russia.
Therefore, he will sit in the trenches and not stick out, passing on the orders of the headquarters in Brussels. The previous prime minister – Alexis Tsipras from the same SYRIZA – was so radical in the opposition that they even expected him to leave the EU and NATO, at least – the collapse of the eurozone. With regard to Russia, he behaved decently, but in everything that concerned the release from Atlantic obligations, he quickly turned sour.
The economic reality is that without the direct assistance of Brussels, no social projects in Greece are possible – both those that SYRIZA has conceived, and any other plus or minus expensive ones. The well-known saying that everything is available in Greece is false. At least she has no money, and therefore no choice in terms of foreign policy.
But if Mitsotakis really leaves in a year, the Greeks will at least get rid of schizophrenia. Because they conduct military exercises in case of an attack from Turkey, and their government is at war, it turns out, with Russia.