Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Cockroaches out of the shadows

You know they're there, but when they come out into the light, you know you have so many that they can't any longer stay in the shadows. You have an undeniable problem that will not go away on its own. Cockroaches.

You start by cleaning up your own mess that they feed on.

Greek New Dawn's Ilias Kasidiaris sues women over TV row
The spokesman for Greece's far-right Golden Dawn, who slapped a left-wing politician and threw water over another on a TV debate, is suing his victims.

Ilias Kasidiaris went to an Athens court to announce he would sue the women for defamation.

Mr Kasidiaris is also suing the TV station, Antenna, for illegal detention after staff tried to stop him leaving following the incident last Thursday.

Golden Dawn will be contesting a critical Greek election this Sunday.

Mr Kasidiaris avoided an arrest warrant for the attack, lying low until it expired.

Under Greek law, the arrest warrant for a minor crime must be carried out by midnight the day after the incident took place for an immediate trial - otherwise it goes to judicial procedure and a much later trial date is set.

"I did what millions of Greeks would have done - when you get hit in the face you have to defend yourself," he said.

His Golden Dawn party garnered 7% of the vote in Greece's inconclusive May election, campaigning on an anti-immigrant platform.

Among other policies, it has proposed planting mines along Greek borders to prevent the entry of migrants.

The party has been accused of violent attacks against immigrants in Athens, but denies the claims.

Greek neo-Nazi MP presses charges against his victims
He further laid charges against a journalist present at the time, who called up a prosecutor asking for action to be taken against him.

The prosecutor had ordered Kasidiaris' arrest on the grounds of attempted grievous bodily harm. But a 48-hour deadline for his arrest on sight expired on Saturday, meaning he is entitled to walk free until his trial.

The latest polls indicate Golden Dawn will remain in parliament after the June 17 elections, despite a slight drop.

Greeks seek better terms after Spanish rescue
With days to go before the June 17 election which could decide Greece's future in the euro zone, the Spanish accord has been dragged into a campaign being fought largely over the harsh conditions imposed under Greece's own 130 billion euro bailout.

The radical leftwing SYRIZA party, which has campaigned on a pledge to scrap the Greek bailout altogether and demand better terms, said the Spanish deal proved that the austerity imposed by international lenders had failed.

"Developments in Spain fully vindicate us in our reading of the crisis: this is a deep structural crisis of the eurozone itself," SYRIZA spokesman Panos Skourletis said on Monday. "The discussions in Europe open new perspectives for Greece and the euro zone."

SYRIZA is running neck and neck with the conservative New Democracy party which helped pass the bailout in parliament and says it can improve the terms without ditching it. Conservative leader Antonis Samaras said the Spanish deal was proof that Greece had more to gain by negotiating with its European partners than by falling out with them.

"Just think about it, at a time when a country like Spain negotiates, some argue that we have to clash with Europe," he said.

The overwhelming majority of Greeks want to keep the euro currency but want to be freed from the harsh austerity measures imposed as part of the bailout that rescued Athens from bankruptcy in March.

With Greece now in its fifth year of deep recession, unemployment running at almost 22 percent and a growing threat of social breakdown, there is pressure from all parties to ease the tough conditions of the March bailout.

"I'm not afraid we will be forced to leave the euro zone. I'm tired of being afraid. I only hope that we will have jobs, a way to make ends meet after June 17", said Eleni Karakoussi, 31, a saleswoman, who said she intended to vote for SYRIZA.

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