Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Greece's downward spiral

Half of Greek police force voted for Golden Dawn, Digital Journal, June 21 2012:

Greece's far-right Golden Dawn party maintained seven percent of the vote in the June 17 elections, winning 18 seats in the Greek parliament. Support held strong in one sector as figures show that half of Greece's police force voted for Golden Dawn.

To Vima published figures showing half of Greece's police force voted for Golden Dawn (Chrysi Avgi), a figure unchanged since the failed May 6 elections. The paper says this phenomenon raises "numerous questions about the political perceptions and choices of uniformed official."

Greek police send crime victims to neo-Nazi 'protectors', Guardian, 28 September 2012:
Greece's far-right Golden Dawn party is increasingly assuming the role of law enforcement officers on the streets of the bankrupt country, with mounting evidence that Athenians are being openly directed by police to seek help from the neo-Nazi group, analysts, activists and lawyers say.

In return, a growing number of Greek crime victims have come to see the party, whose symbol bears an uncanny resemblance to the swastika, as a "protector".

One victim of crime, an eloquent US-trained civil servant, told the Guardian of her family's shock at being referred to the party when her mother recently called the police following an incident involving Albanian immigrants in their downtown apartment block.

Greek anti-fascist protesters 'tortured by police' after Golden Dawn clash, Guardian, 9 October 2012:
Fifteen anti-fascist protesters arrested in Athens during a clash with supporters of the neo-Nazi party Golden Dawn have said they were tortured in the Attica General Police Directorate (GADA) – the Athens equivalent of Scotland Yard – and subjected to what their lawyer describes as an Abu Ghraib-style humiliation.

Members of a second group of 25 who were arrested after demonstrating in support of their fellow anti-fascists the next day said they were beaten and made to strip naked and bend over in front of officers and other protesters inside the same police station.

Several of the protesters arrested after the first demonstration on Sunday 30 September told the Guardian they were slapped and hit by a police officer while five or six others watched, were spat on and "used as ashtrays" because they "stank", and were kept awake all night with torches and lasers being shone in their eyes.

Some said they were burned on the arms with a cigarette lighter, and they said police officers videoed them on their mobile phones and threatened to post the pictures on the internet and give their home addresses to Golden Dawn, which has a track record of political violence.

Thanks to Germany, Greece is heading towards actual fascism, with an actual Nazi party organising attacks on immigrants and using its police proxies to torture and intimidate its political opponents. The spiral needs to be stopped - but instead Germany is tightening it with more grinding austerity.