The emotional handicap of the entire government and it members made an awful impression over the last days.
Last Monday they were confronted with one of the worst tragedies in the post-junta era, and they acted as rulers made of stone, or rather “people made of marble”, as depicted by Andrzej Wajda, when he wanted to describe the harshness of the Warsaw regime in the first post-war years.
There are about 100 of our unjustly lost fellow citizens, and government members do not even offer a word of consolation, any assumption of responsibility. They only offer excuses about the speed of the winds, the bad weather conditions and references to arsonists who were allegedly uncovered by Minister Nikos Pappas’ satellite company.
Government members have even accused the victims over illegal structures and the chaotic construction in the area, even though it was the government a few months ago which advertised the opportunity to legalise illegal structures nationwide.
Everything for those in power was well done. They say everyone acted according to plan, and that there was no negligence. The say they were overcome by the circumstances and that is why there is no apology or resignation or a shred of sensitivity, but only displays of callousness , which the people can see right away. People see it and understand it at first glance, looking at their awkward gazes and listening to the awkward words of the prime minister and his associates, during the televised meeting of the Fire Service Coordinating Centre in Halandri.
Undoubtedly, the entire reaction and effort of the government from the first moment aimed at reducing negative impressions, and dealing with the general outcry in an absolutely cynical manner. The idea was to shift public debate to other topics that are less troublesome for Mr. Tsipras and his entourage.
By all accounts, after the first signs of disaster, the government conducted a communications campaign, and did nothing else.
Under the weight of responsibilities and the palpable rage of Greek society, the prime minister attempted to shift stance by assuming the political responsibility for the tragedy.
He asked in a self-critical manner, “if we reacted correctly during the critical hours, if we could have done something more, if we could have saved even one more soul of all those that left unjustly”.
Despite any self-criticism, the event is a tremendous burden. As such, it highlighted all the hidden administrative weaknesses, the problematic, partisan choices of people, the staffing of important services with employees without experience and without knowledge, and above all without pain in their heart for their work and mission.
Watching those who handled the wildfire in a parody of a news conference last Thursday, everyone could see the deficit, the void, and the weakness.
Now, a wind of condemnation blows across the country. Since 2015, one has seen countless images of disaster. There are even more cases of a problematic management of the country’s issues, which leaves no room to misinterpret the capabilities of the Tsipras-Kammenos coalition government.
They have exhausted any remaining reserves of trust.
As long as those in power insist on a communications-type crisis management, the more the lack of trust will grow.
Truly, how will the prime minister go the annual Thessaloniki International Trade Fair to proclaim the end of the bailout memorandums? How will he address the Greek people? What kind of hope can the government imbue in citizens after all the tragic events in Eastern Attica?
The impasse is obvious. All that is left for Mr. Tsipras to do is to organise his departure from office. The sooner he realises that, the better it will be for him and for the country.