Athens Saturday Update: Polling, Rioting, Rallying, Repression, International Attention & Meddling

NOTE: If you want to comment or contact me regarding this update please do so through Reddit or Twitter as the comment system on my blog is not really functional or useful

Might end up being a longer update. Thanks for the kind words and thanks on the last one. These past few days have been intense and busy as you can imagine.

1. International meddling in the crisis and referendum is at a fever pitch. I can’t even begin to detail the obvious propaganda aimed at Greece right now. The idea that we are having food shortages is a lie. ATM’s are all functioning with a limit for citizens with local banks. The ‘YES’ vote clearly has an international media company managing their campaign. The Youtube videos are ridiculous and look like something a USA media yuppie firm would create. What will happen next week is of course an open question but I will get to that in a moment.

2. Some truths. The air is thick with extreme tension everywhere. Even on the streets you see patience snap with fighting and pensioners upset at the money situation. There was a very depressing picture posted the other day that showed an older man crying outside an ATM. This isn’t hyperbole, people are afraid of what is coming.

3. So many foreign journalists are here. I keep running into them over and over and most are of course total idiots. Some are OK but even my friends who are journalists foreign and local are losing patience with some of them. A known holier than thou USA anarchist from USA showed up in Exarchia over the past few days and has almost gotten beaten up twice for different idiocy. This shit makes me and other internationals look bad and I beg anyone coming here to screw your fucking head on straight. Which knowing most USA radicals is near impossible.

4. The police have basically fanned out all through Athens. Acting how they did prior to Syriza being elected. Following alongside demonstrations, harassing people, checking papers, standing outside the Polytechnic gates, coming far into Exarchia in order to provoke clashes. It’s been bizarre though, the feared and hated DELTA squads are seemingly not around at night. Although yesterday a motorcycle demonstration was straight up attacked for no reason. It’s been nonsense and confusing as the police have mostly stood down the past few months. Life is scary and the air is thick. Rioting has been breaking out nightly in Exarchia and lasted till almost 6 AM this morning. There was clashes earlier yesterday on the edge of Syntagma when the motorbike demonstration was attacked.

5. On Wednesday there was a larger demonstration for YES than the previous NO demonstration. Last night there was a final NO demonstration which I guess could be thought of as a response to that YES demonstration. There were so many people, thousands and thousands.

6. The polling for the referendum is incredibly close. At this point it is too close too call but most people think the NO vote still has it. Check here for polling: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greek_bailout_referendum,_2015

Here is the link for the Greek elections site, if you are a nerd like me you will be able to watch them all roll in and it will be pretty clear by 9 or so Greek time what the result is
http://ekloges.ypes.gr/current/e/public/index.html?lang=en#{“cls”:”main”,”params”:{}}

Lastly, I am not going to lie. People fear what would happen if YES wins. Anarchists are somewhat split on whether to vote or not. I can personally see both sides and to be honest, my personal feeling is that most people can see both as well. What will happen after is really the question and I am not sure if anyone can answer it. Something feels different, it is in the air and to deny it is impossible. The past year in Greece has been a struggle and this may be part of the culmination. But there is a big question as to what it really means, what it signifies and how it will fit into a bigger picture.

Lastly let me wish my Greek friends luck, this isn’t “my fight” as much as it is theirs and there is no other position other than support, solidarity and risk. Fuck the international capitalists, the state apparatus and all of their supporters.

Thanks.

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