Du tonneau des danaïdes au supplice de tantale, en passant par le rocher de Sisyphe ou au talon d'Achille, les images ne manquent pas pour illustrer certains maux qui frappent la Grèce actuellement, et la presse ne s'en prive d'ailleurs pas.
À ce sujet, j'appelle solennellement les manifestants à écrire les dates des jours de manifestation en gros sur leurs banderoles, cela permettra peut-être d’identifier les images qui semblent tourner en boucle.
Plus léger, "20 minutes" a dû doubler l'interview d'une Française qui répondait en anglais à un journaliste qui ne travaillait vraisemblablement pas pour un journal francophone.
Autre point remarquable, qui m'a été confirmé par mon professeur de grec, le seul commerce florissant sur Athènes en ce moment, c'est les boulangeries. Pour un Français comme moi, qui ne conçoit que très difficilement un repas sans pain, cela semble plutôt être une bonne nouvelle. Mais quand je me rappelle du dernier pays dans lequel j'ai vécu et où on m'a confié un jour "le pain, c'est tout ce qu'on avait pendant la crise, alors maintenant, si je peux, je n'en mangerais jamais plus", je me dis que ce n'est pas bon signe. Ce pays, c'était le Zimbabwe.
L'avenir, plus personne n'ose l'envisager ici. Chaque mesure est annoncée au dernier moment, chaque décision est remise à plus tard. Le gouvernement comme les bailleurs cachent leur jeu. On navigue à vue.
Et quand on navigue à vue, on ne voit pas les obstacles, ou on les voie trop tard. Entre le peuple qui n'a plus rien à perdre, la police et l'armée qui se radicalisent et les plus riches qui sont prêts à quitter le pays du jour au lendemain, la situation pourrait dégénérer du jour au lendemain. Ce scénario est d'autant plus probable que de nombreux protagonistes ont tout intérêt à annoncer de mauvaises nouvelles, et ne s'en privent pas. Ils devraient prendre garde et se souvenir de la voile noire du navire de Thésée ; même fausses, les mauvaises nouvelles peuvent être source de grand malheur.
From the bottomless pit to torment tantalum through the rock of Sisyphus and Achilles' heel, there are enough allegories to illustrate some of the ills afflicting Greece now, and the press is not the last one to use them.
This is not the most famous myth that I chose to illustrate this post, but I found that the Theseus' ship's black sail, which causes the bad news because of it's announcement is particularly appropriate to explain what is happening here now.
The situation recently more chaotic last week, because two forces are playing at loser chess.
Government managers, set up by international agencies and neighbor States has want nothing to change, because the subsidies given by the creditors are the only way to keep the country alive, even if it does not move.
Where the situation becomes grotesque is that most creditors have no desire to change things either. Bankruptcy could lead to an exit from the eurozone and have the debt financed by other forces (China and Russia, to name just a few), not to mention the political instability that is already strong in the area and turns closer and closer to Europe. Besides, canceling the debt, would be a way to lose a lot of money, and would be admitting the weakness of the euro who would surely collapse.
Then, as the protagonists don't want to take advantage on their opponent, the government and the creditors are tempted to stay still, even to reverse ... After all, as Greece may borrow on private markets, even at exorbitant rates, this will only dig their deficits and put a little more pressure on the people who will eventually agree to the setback what they're imposed.
And on the ground, what's going on?
Recent events should have been peaceful, but the Greeks did not appreciate that the government went back on the repeal of the privileges of staff employed by the Parliament, just because they threatened to block the passage of the law by technical ways. Violence erupted, and police flooded the Constitution Square in tear gas to calm everyone. Nothing really unusual, except that this time the riots have not occurred under the windows of journalists and I suspect they have emerged archival images for their articles.
In this regard, I ask the protesters to write the dates of the event on their banners, it will perhaps permit to identify images that seem played in a loop.
Less seriously, "20 minutes" had to cover the voice of a French woman who answered in English to a journalist who worked unlikely for a French newspaper.
I'm not sure they would have admitted she was French if this tourist didn't get such a Frenchy accent.
Another remarkable point, which was confirmed to me by my professor of Greek, is that the only thriving business in Athens at the moment is bakeries. For a French like me, who conceives very difficult meal without bread, it seems to be rather good news. But when I remember the last country in which I lived and where I was once told "the bread was everything we had during the crisis, so now if I can, I don't eat it no more", I realize that this is not a good sign. This country was Zimbabwe.
And the future?
The future, no one dares to consider it here. Each measure is announced at the last moment, every decision is postponed. The government and creditors hide their game. We play by ear.
And when you sail in the dark, you see no obstacle or you see it too late. Between people who have nothing to lose, the police and the army who become radicalized and the richest who are ready to leave the country fast, the situation could deteriorate overnight. This scenario is even more likely that many stakeholders have an interest in bad news, and do not hesitate to create and spread it. They should be careful and remember the Theseus' ship's black sail. Even false, bad news may be a source of great unhappiness.