A) Political clowns and clownish acts were few and far between , which for me provoked a welcome surprise. Only Greek flags, few Pontiac ones and a few old banners of the Macedonian liberation war, nothing belonging to political parties.
B) The rally was organised by ‘ten nobodies’ as we joked with our friends at the end of the rally but they managed to bring in hundreds of thousands whatever the official msm states. People are longing for a spark to come out onto the streets.
C) Golden Dawn were there but not in an organised party block dispersed and in no way did their line pass and their voice wasn’t heard.
D) With the exception of General Frangos who spoke and raised the atmosphere from a nationalist perspective on the other hand he managed to explain fully the geopolitical dangers from conceding on the name, the other speakers kept a low tone and were in particular careful in what they said but some classic comments which the crowds love were unnavoidalbe.
I would like to add that the General is loved by the people and everyone wanted to listen to what he had to say and they turned on us when we were talking as they wanted to listen to his every word. From what I notice he has political aspirations and that he is preparing a new party. If he goes along that route whilst militant and honest he will burn himself. The crowd is always looking for a leader and a general in that position is what I am afraid required for that role. This is the eternal issue that the Left is abandoning the people from an abstentionist position of critique. Here they managed to call us all fascists.
E) The most positive of all is that I left with a feeling of satisfaction from the demo and that many of the speakers (one from Thrace, a pensioner from Crete and others) raised the social justice issues which we were concerned about: They spoke about Skouries, the ports, the airports, the Memorandums, the repossessions (even the General mentioned them) and they laid the base for a broader union of the social and patriotic struggle. The political regime was condemned as a whole and with joy I heard the speaker from Thrace call the politicians Kotzambasides (Greek quisling collaborators of the Ottomans).
The social justice issues easily were transferred to the people. In the discussions I had with the people for the necessary agitation I realised that we are getting a common consciousness, the people are ready from time.
It’s the first time in such a large rally the national and social issues went hand in hand and this I believe is what will grant success to our struggle. All those who will ridicule us and slander us will remain once more observers of developments that will surpass them.
F) The most negative was that the General and who spoke before him raised an issue of a Greek mionority in FYROM something which I believe is dangerous and which may open Pandoras box. Whilst those around me said that if you don’t make demands to balance out a situation you cant be defending yourself without taking an own goal. In short many believe the best form of defence is attack but I remain a skeptic on this issue.
G) One of the organisers of the rally Othon Iakovidis who spoke twice set a correct political framework fully adapted to the spirit of the Squares in 2011 which I will add as being a positive. He closed the rally stating today was the start, the Macedonian issue is only the tip of the iceberg and that all the issues of the anti-Memorandum struggle remain burning and open. He called for even a broader mobilisation for the liberation of the country from the Troikas control. The struggle continues.
H) Some say Anthimos appeared (Thessalonikis Church leader) but I didn’t see him nor did he speak for as long as I was there. There were three other Metropolitan Church leaders and few priests (I am not involved in ecclesiastical issues and don’t know them) who sat on the back of the platform in chairs and did not take an energetic part or speak in public. One of the organisers revealed to me that they hadn’t been invited and they came on their own despite the ban by the Archbishop of the Greek Church for attendance at the rally.
I) The ‘antiestablishment’ crowd were at the periphery of the. They circulated a picture of an attendee of the rally with a bloodied head wound. From the background the photo was from the rally. But there were no incidents despite the provocations. The people threw out the paramilitaries (people chanted ‘Traitors’ Traitors’ to them) they found it hard to do anything and they did what they know best in such circumstance, made a run for it. I didn’t see this with my own eyes but leave this out there as it could be false information…