Greece is in the middle of a slow but accelerating bank run, a political crisis and could default on its debt by the end of the month.
The atmosphere here four months ago was electric and full of hope.. “It’s time for dreams to take revenge” I was told in the Syriza campaign tent on the night they won. But many now wonder if these dreams will just be shattered.
People knew Tsipras had promised things he might not be able to deliver, but most told me they’d be satisfied if he accomplished just one in ten of his promises.
Four months and many concessions later, he is fighting with everything he has to uphold the mandate he was given by the public who elected him to abolish austerity.
“We will probably be the only country to pay with our own blood.. ” He once told me.
Since his win, the poorest of Greeks have seen food vouchers and electricity reinstated, but generally I’m beginning to see a loss of patience amongst people who tell me nothing much has changed since last year.
Thousands turned out on Wednesday to support their country and government against what they say is the blackmailing of Europe. The majority of greeks still want hope for a solution to be found within the union.
It’s the first outpouring of support I’ve seen in a while. Many are disappointed that not enough has been done at the negotiating table.. or blame the government for not been tough enough. The dockworkers who voted for Syriza to avoid privatisation now face a full privatisation of their port. Former right wing voters who supported syriza are still waiting for a determined crackdown on corruption.
“We lost the rendezvous with the revolution” a woman told me last week. She says she’s still waiting.
Over the last four months what I’ve witnessed inside the walls of the parliament and prime minister’s office is this: They don’t stop. There’ve been weeks of meetings, flights, press conferences, inquiries.. A determination to fight until the last minute for what they believe in. But time has finally run out.
Under the moonlight the ancient Acropolis looks down upon everything. She’s probably the only one who knows the true story of what happened in this greek tragedy. What she doesn’t know and what she’s probably never seen are the events that will follow in a Europe that’s never felt so fractured or appeared so drained of solidarity. At least that is to the Greeks.