Today is one of the greatest moments in post-dictatorship modern history. Our government has to decide whether or not Greece will go bankrupt and avoid bankruptcy or fall off the cliff and die. As we witness the events unfold, we now finally know who the patriots are who support the will of the people -as well as Greek national interests-, and which groups have a plan to destroy everything we have come to know.
Here is where it really gets funny: All of those who for years suffered political and social criticism are now assisting the government from crumbling. The "German-tsoliades" (or German Greek traditional soldiers) are today giving Tsipras their vote, while his own deputies are playing it safe. These are the very same people who for years suffered brutal attacks on street corners, were insulted, mocked and at times even terrified to step out of their homes. All of this so that Greece does not wither and die; and yet Tsipras does not have the political courage to send all these wannabes to the Tartarus. This is indeed, another shameful page in the history of the Greek left. They are once again, placing the interests of their party over the will of the Greek nation.
At a time when this country’s finances are vulnerable, and the political climate is unstable, Tsipras has to pass legislation that he doesn’t even believe in to avert a Grexit and enter a new agreement with the Troika. His biggest challenge: Dealing with the Radical Left elements within his own party.
The first part of the deal involves passing several measures that are designed to help stabilize Greece and put an end to the prospect of a Grexit. Following this, a government reshuffle is sure to follow since a number of SYRIZA MPs have expressed their opposition to the last-ditch deal (namley Zoi Kostantopoulou, Yianis -with one 'n'- Varoufakis, Panagiotis Lafazanis, Dimitris Stratoulis and Kostas Isihos, etc.) Other SYRIZA MPs. Other MPs who expressed their disagreement have resigned include Foreign Affairs Minister Nikos Choundis, Alternate Finance Minister Nadia Valavani and the General Secretary of the Ministry of Infrastructure, Transport and Network Manos Manousakis.
In fact, dozens of MPs, including senior SYRIZA figures and the government's junior coalition partner, may partially or fully reject the bailout, forcing Tsipras to rely on the opposition to carry the vote, which is expected a little after midnight on Wednesday.
With this in mind, Tsipras knows that he is quickly losing the 162 seat majority that he holds in the Greek Parliament so there are two scenarios at play at the moment: He will either return to the polls by creating a new government alliance, or he will step down and allow someone else from his party to take the reigns of Greece into their hands.
Protests have so far been relatively mild, but civil servants, pharmacists and protest marches by left wing anti-bailout groups (including extreme far left ANTARSYA and anarchist groups) which are planned for Wednesday night could turn violent.
And if that wasn't enough, 107 members of SYRIZA’s Central Committee, out of a total of 201, have signed a declaration expressing strong opposition to the bailout deal.
Those who will be voting for these measures have already denounced the agreement in advance, even Tsipras himself.
If this climate prevails, then our country will quickly reach another impasse and then, the Grexit will not just be a plan or the desires of some drachma or hard German circles, but a visible reality.
On Tuesday evening, and during a live interview to state broadcaster ERT, Tsipras said that he has the historic responsibility of safely leading Greece out of this current impasse, and an obligation to take all the necessary initiatives to implement this promise. We hope he makes good on his pledge, because the captain of a ship is not just a captain to his inner circle of friends, but of all the passengers on the ship.