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A Modern Greek Tragedy

03/07/2015 17:20 BST | Updated 03/07/2016 10:59 BST

The current Greek government won the elections under the slogan "Hope is Coming".

Is "hope" seeing our grandparents crying and dying in front of ATM machines? Is "hope" people literally threatening to kill their brothers over political disagreements? Is "hope" a government that cannot take responsibility for their mistakes?

Judging by the way they've behaved in recent months, if the current Greek government were in charge of the Titanic, they'd probably ask the passengers to operate the ship the moment they saw an iceberg heading towards them.

I was born in Athens 25 years ago. I moved to the UK five years ago to study for my Bachelors and Master's degree, before finding a job as Digital Marketer. All my family and friends are still in Athens, and what's happening back home is pure madness.

My father used to work on the private sector, and my mother was working in the public sector. They're both pensioners, so they're precisely the sort of people who've been hit hardest by this crisis.

During the last five months, everything that could go wrong went wrong. Now people are literally dying because of our government's inability to protect their own people and to safeguard the stability of their country.

We recently saw the first casualty of the situation, when a 59-year-old pensioner died while waiting in line to withdraw 60 euros of his pension from an ATM in Larissa.

I fear he won't be the only casualty: there's a referendum due this Sunday, and the country's polarised. Many fear that, whatever the outcome, Greece may be on the brink of another civil war.

Lifelong friendships have been broken, families have been torn apart, and people have received death threats for simply daring to hold a different opinion. Many of the battles have taken place on social media, and at times my Facebook feed has read like a grim Homerian account of massacre.

Due to government capital controls, people have been left without the cash they need to buy food or medicine. These capital controls have ensured that, even if they wanted to, foreign investors would not be able to support Greek businesses.

We can't even look to tourism to save us, which has long been the number one source of revenue in Greece, as thanks to the overall air of chaos, confusion, and fear, thousands of holidaymakers have cancelled their travel plans.

The country needs hope, and the government that promised to provide it is acting like a spoiled child, petulantly holding its breath until it gets its own way.

With the banks closed and the referendum looming, many Greeks have found themselves stranded in other countries, with no means of paying for hotels, food, or flights. They're terrified, and they have no idea how they will ever get home. In order to survive, these capital controls must be lifted. Yet their government is ignoring their pleas.

But if things are bad now, there's no telling to what depths the country will sink should the "No" vote win the referendum. And it won't just be Greece that will suffer.

If the "Grexit" comes to pass, all Greeks will lose their EU rights, which means that any Greeks based in the UK will be forced to leave. This will have a devastating effect on the UK economy: Overnight, the UK will lose the business and the revenue of thousands of active tax payers. Properties will be abandoned, and many rents, mortgages, loans, and credit cards will go unpaid - not because the Greeks will refuse to pay, but because they'll have no choice but to leave the country.

Even people like me - the Greeks who had to leave Greece in order get a chance to a better quality of life - now live in fear of what the consequences of this referendum will be. I am lucky enough to work for Hallam Internet, a digital marketing agency. But "digital marketer" is a job that simply doesn't exist in Greece and there is no digital services sector. For me, returning doesn't feel like an option.

The government promised hope. Instead, they've laid the foundations for a disaster of truly epic proportions. If the Greek people vote "No" in the referendum, the "Grexit" will loom, and our future will be dark and full of terrors.

This crisis has all the makings of a modern Greek tragedy. All Greeks may soon feel like Odysseus: wandering through a hostile land in search of home. But this time, there may be no Ithaca on the horizon.