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Fear-onomy 101

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Another day, another social presence for someone living in Greece to fear. As if there wasn't enough fear making the rounds already.

To take a leaf out of the quote bible of the esteemed Hunter S. Thompson: "fear of poverty, fear of getting downsized or fired because of the plunging economy, fear of getting evicted for bad debts, fear of terrorism."

That last little gem, fear of terrorism, is the latest addition to the list. So far, the street riots, the lootings, the destruction of public property and the random acts of police brutality stayed ever so slightly away from a large part of the population.

Sure, they were happening, but if you kept yourself at a safe distance, if you stayed behind a closed door and watched it all on television, then you were safe. And safety goes a long way in making sure you can sleep at night. Even if your pockets are increasingly empty.

That all came crashing down around our ears this past weekend when police and the ever so professional-sounding Anti Terrorism Task Force recovered a bomb from a metro train on Saturday afternoon. According to reports, the bomb would have gone off at the Aigaleo metro station but thankfully did not, due to faulty wiring.

What this effectively means is that its open season on all of us. You are no longer safe. Your life is in danger. At any moment, at any time, a bomb could go off while you are ordering a coffee, going to work, picking up your kids, meeting friends. At least that is what it's being promoted as. And let's face it, that is exactly what the message is. No two ways of looking at it, no alternate way of analysing it. A bomb on a public train, means that the internal strife in Greece, just moved up a notch on the brutality scale and is now out for the blood of the people.

Frankly, it all fits into place perfectly. Too perfectly one might say. On Monday, a new entry on the terrorist roster, announced that it had in fact placed the bomb on the train. "Antartiko Poleon", which roughly translates into "Urban Guerillas", had never before made its presence felt in the Athenian landscape. The shock value of its inaugural hit was the fact that unlike other terrorist units in the past, these urban guerillas were striking blind, caring little if their attempts at an explosive anti-state protest ended in massive civilian casualties.

If I was a conspiracy theorist, or a cynic, I would be smiling. I would also be thinking about the fact that a terrorist faction no one has ever heard of before, is jumping up and down and flailing its arms gingerly, hoping for attention, at a time when the internal political forces of Greece are striving to evade the blinding spotlight.

At a time when the internal political forces of Greece were hoping that their hilariously feeble cuts on their own state funded expenditure - duly agreed by all, political friends and foes alike - would not be weighed against the cuts they are asking the public at large to make, forcing many into poverty and despair.

At a time when the internal political forces of Greece are actively looking for something, anything, that would save their crumbling fa├žade, as more and more Greeks (nearly half the electorate) are actively stating that they do not trust any of the existing parties in parliament. A new enemy, a new common foe could be a masterstroke, a perfect smokescreen to further disorient a panicking people as we head ever closer to the general elections. And it's oh so much easier to handle someone in a slight fluster isn't it? He'll pretty much believe anything as long as it gets him back to calm waters.

That is, I would think all of the above if was a conspiracy theorist. But I'm not.

I'm just saying.

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