German Occupation 2.0 – Can Greece avoid the infinite cycle of doom?

by Gregory Frye

A few days ago I started research on the World War II occupation of Greece, a book called Inside Hitler’s Greece by Mark Μazower. It is amazing albeit ghastly to learn all the details about what happened – and how. That’s the interesting thing about the study of history, sorting through either first-hand references or narrative accounts such as Mazower’s, who had access to a great many sources in piecing his book together. Studying history, putting the puzzle pieces together, knowing what happened and how people reacted clarifies our own vision, prevents us from repeating mistakes in an otherwise infinite cycle of doom.

Presently Germany has reoccupied Greece, this time instead of with guns they’re ravaging us economically, going straight for throats and hearts of Greeks who never did anything except try to work and raise a family (obviously not everybody is so innocent). Like the previous occupation the Greek people show no sense of unity or central organization against this growing weight of oppression. Allowing whoever is plucking Angela Merkel’s puppet strings to have carte blanche is an easy mistake to  make because the memory of WWII nightmare was squabbled and faded, older generations wanting to forget and doing just that, our lack ouf historical perspective, among other shortcomings, has turned into another generation of all-accepting dupes.

Greece has always had a weak political system and now is no different, which is another similarity with the German invasion of 1941: we currently even have a caretaker government in place, and soon, it wouldn’t surprise me if the Axis powers assembled their own government in Athens, to handle the country during occupation. Should this motif of historical repetition continue, Greece is looking at a complete breakdown of administration and proper authority, the broken system giving way to food panics, widespread famine in largely populated areas, black market trading and inflation of basic items such as flour, butter, oil and cigarettes. These extreme circumstances will create seething political and social polarizations among Greek people, so that when the dust finally clears and the Eurozone Soldiers finally leave us alone, Greece will be looking at its second civil war in less than a century.

The further I get into my research of the initial occupation of Greece by the Germans (Italy and Bulgaria also occupied parts of the country), the more concerned I am at the parallels found in the continual flow of headlines involving Greek economic recession, most of them loosed from the dark of some gaping sphincter absurdity – who is controlling this machine? – never-ending greed power mongering that has plagued mankind since primitive cavemen discovered how to throw a rock, and then the big stick, walking softly, or is that marching I hear? No this invasion is occurring through the television and through economic scheming. When are people going to stop putting up with these circle jerk backroom smoker oligarchy demon money fools, stop giving them our blood, sweat, and tears, turn off the TV get outside and dance, smile, say hello – get high on the beauty that surrounds you. That’s true rapture, is what separates the positive thinkers from the negative, the ecstasy and clarity of beauty from the blinding darkness of anger and fear.

I’m not saying I hate Germany, but the measures they’ve imposed on Greece are not working, people here are so destitute that we have a new phenomenon of public suicides, and we really are headed toward a class warfare should poverty continue to increase. It is not implausible to suggest that the controlling interests already know this.

This notion of positive thinking is what Greece needs in order to finally restructure a system for itself that works and that will sustain the country and its people for the next several decades. The people must be given enough breathing room to be happy, to work, contribute to community, innovate, raise family, and prosper. Simultaneously, Greece must enhance its educational system, equipping the youth not with useless knowledge spouted out by underpaid teachers but a sense of creativity, a sense of ownership in any task they choose to embrace, allowing within the country, starting now, an atmosphere of growth and development.

The question is not the validity of these simple solutions, but how do we get there when everybody’s talking at the same time?

Gregory Frye

Athens, Greece

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