When a country goes through an economic and political crisis, the culture, the morals and the environment are also at risk. For this reason I was not surprised by the introduction of a new law in Parliament (23 July) on environmental upgrading, private urbanization and changes in forest law. Through those changes, the government proves that it lacks any environmental sensitivities whatsoever. But it is not the first time that this has happened in Greece.
In 1970 the junta signed a contract with Onassis in which it ceded him an area of 10,000 acres in Eleona - a region within Eleusis, for the purposes of the aluminum industry, This ended a few kilometers from the center of Athens and was close to the Saronicos Sea. In 1971 there was a dispute between Onassis and the junta so the land passed into the hands of the Greek Bank of Industrial Development. In 1973 the junta sold 2,500 acres (through the Bank) to the ship-owner Stratis Andreadis so he could build a refinery. The residents appealed to the Council of State, which delayed the trial because it served the interests of the owner.
And while the residents were in Athens for trial, the bulldozers invaded the olive groves without legal cover (on 13 April 1973) and began their destructive work, extirpating a large number of olive trees and demolishing livestock and poultry farms in the region.
The same violent images of expropriation occurred in other areas of Attica, such as Skaramagas, Menidi, Maroussi and Spata. The junta and Andreadis promised compensation, but they never gave any money to the people.
In those days the dictator Papadopoulos insisted that Greece belongs to the people, but at the same time he was selling out parts of Attica. Today Prime Minister Antonis Samaras is doing the same thing. He is selling territories without contests (for example the old airport of Athens, Piraeus port, the old Hippodrome). These two regimes (the seven-year junta and the government of Samaras) are similar in several ways.
The fact is that the junta has sold a scenic and historic place. It sacrificed this area in the name of "development". This development had an expiration date. While the disaster for nature and for archaeology is irreversible.
The criminal act of the junta took place shortly before their fall. They did not care that they destroyed the country. And today's right-wing patriots sell out our country even as we are ready to hand over power at the elections.
Today's objective is the beaches and forests. With the new draft law, each investor will be able to do whatever he wants in the forests, ignoring the conditions and the regulations that once existed. This will allow the construction and operation of tourist activities, oil tanks (!), and even power generation plants...
The ecological crime is enormous. What will be left of our forests when along with the already existing illegal buildings there are further structures added?
How will our children enjoy our wonderful beaches when the government wants to fill them with cement in the name of progress and development?
Unfortunately when a regime dies it leaves behind scorched earth. The Junta destroyed Eleusis and the neoclassical style which beautifies Athens. Samaras will leave behind “built forests” and beaches of cement. All this happens with the connivance of the European Union.
Do you want it?
Would you allow it?
Edited by Ivan Botoucharov