The police operation targets all illegal immigrants and has already netted some 2,000 arrested, who face immediate deportation. The door-to-door tactics have again revealed the deep penetration of the city’s center section by at least 100,000 illegal aliens, which is only a small part of the estimated 1.5 million largely undocumented persons who illegally reside in Greece.

Citizen’s Protection Minister Nikos Dendias used unusually harsh language to describe the illegal migrant crisis as threatening the very foundations of the country; illegal immigration, Dendias underlined, “ a bomb placed in the foundation of society and state” and has brought Greece “on the verge of collapse”.

The only argument against the police operation came, not unexpectedly, from the SYRIZA leftwing party, which has a long history of agitating in favor of illegal immigrants, and advocating open borders and the mass naturalization of all undocumented aliens via cursory processes.

Greek governments since the fall of communism, and the opening of borders across the former eastern bloc, failed disastrously to stem illegal arrivals in Greece – first, by doing little to stem the early Albanian invasion, which transformed an estimated half of the Albanian population of roughly 3 million into casual border crossers with at least 500,000 establishing permanent residence within Greece; and, secondly, by failing to oppose another invasion began in the early years of the 21st century, this time one of Afro-Asians, over the country’s eastern border, with Turkey acting as a facilitator of undocumented aliens from the crisis areas of Asia and Africa seeking to reach Europe.

At the root of the illegal immigration crisis is a complex set of factors including the failed policies of “multiculturalism” and “tolerance” promoted by the European Union; the refusal of Greece’s “partners” to provide effective aid to the Greek government in order to combat the onslaught; the equally hypocritical and politically motivated criticism from European countries concerning the “unacceptable” conditions meeting illegal aliens once they have become unwanted “guests” in Greece to be provided with the essential by spending Greek taxpayers’ money; the appalling Dublin II agreement that has effectively turned Greece into a repository of illegal aliens; and the burgeoning networks of human traffickers who work in profitable relation with Turkey in pushing an estimated 100,000 illegals over the border with Greece each year.

However, the current attempt to clean up Athens, and the perceived willingness of the Samaras government acting to stem the invasion and roll back the throngs, represents a step that is more likely too little too late. The illegal immigration crisis, Minister Dendias suggested, threatens the country with collapse and is “perhaps” more serious than the economic crisis that is currently unhinging Greece. In other words, Minister Dendias recognized in all but in specific wording that illegal immigration has become the key national security threat facing Greece today. The pattern of behavior of Greek governments to date though demonstrate that the fact hasn’t sunk in and, even worse, that the willingness to adopt methods appropriate to the significance of the threat is currently lacking. 

Calling things by their true names is not a prominent characteristic of Greek politicians, and that is why the Dendias urgent call acquires added importance: the situation, the minister’s words suggest, has literally gotten out of control to the point where even the traditionally inactive Greek political class, or at least part of it, now sees a clear and present danger that must be tackled right away.

In an ideal world, shaping a posture of “zero tolerance” to illegal immigration would have been the least that Greece could do in order to begin an effective defense against the throngs rolling across the border. But Greece now lies bankrupt and broken, her sovereignty effectively abolished by the “bailout” terms that methodically destroy the country’s economy and society. In such a wonderfully “democratic world” defending one’s own home has become problematic.

The Research Institute of European and American Studies has never stopped highlighting illegal immigration as the primary national security threat of current times. But this is not the occasion to say “I told you so.” The occasion rather calls for action, even within a field of national initiatives dramatically hamstrung by the Troika’s own deliberate assault against Greece.

In the opposite case, expect illegal immigrants, restricted inside Greece by Dublin, to grow quickly into a desperate mob willing to take things to extremes. And with Greek society reduced daily to desperation and agony, the situation could develop in a way that will require a lot more than sermons by “human rights” activists to bring under control – if, of course, control remains a possibility.

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