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live Alexis Tsipras – the proletarian future prime minister

11 May 2012 / 21:05:05  GRReporter
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The young hope of the extreme left Alexis Tsipras was elected leader of SYRIZA in 2008. Then, his opponent for the post was Fotis Kouvelis, who later separated from it and created his own political organization called Democratic Left. Tsipras won in the party elections with a convincing 70% of the votes. In the period before the crisis, the media promoted him as the symbol of youth and change. Young, with a pure political past and a diploma of engineer, he became synonymous with hope in the political life of Greece. This bright image of the left representative did not remain pure for long after a journalistic investigation by showed that the young star with communist beliefs together with his cousin is the owner of a private construction company. It was established mainly to be assigned government procurements, which, as is known, are the sweetest morsel in the dish of construction entrepreneurs in Greece, as it is known.

The story has caused severe reactions and the leader of the extreme left party LAOS George Karatzaferis did not fail to show Tsipras that the ideology the extreme left representative supported and preached is largely at odds with his actual business activity (the way he is earning his money). Karatzaferis has also questioned the transparency of how Tsipras’ company has received government contracts. In a parliamentary debate on tackling rising unemployment in 2008, Karatzaferis told his opponent from SYRIZA Alexos Alvanos: "Can you send Alexis to explain to unemployed Mitsos, Thanassis, Prokopis or Dimitra how he has made a construction company for the performance of government contracts at this age."

Alexis Tsipras made his first steps in a political career at an early age. His political activity dates back to the period when he was not maybe shaving but was a tireless member of the Greek communist youth. In fact, he was still in high school when he took an active part in major student unrest in 1990-91. Then, teenagers were blocking the educational activities for months as a protest against the educational reform made at that time. Greek internet media have recently published an article by the communist at the age of 17, who commented on the inefficiency of the educational system in the newspaper "Youth of the Day". The teen-aged Tsipras said, "Unfortunately, the moment Greece changes its minister, it changes its national educational programme too. I do not remember when there was a constant line, in which a minister followed  the programme of his predecessor." In an interview with a national television during that period, the young man said something that he would repeat many times in the following 20 years, "There are no gains without struggles." Years later, LAOS deputy Adonis Georgiadis said that God should save Greece if the activist Tsipras assumed responsibility for the governing of the country.

Not much is known about Alexis Tsipras' private life. According to Counter TV, in the spring of 2003 he should have appeared in the land forces, but having "ties" in the then PASOK government, he managed to transfer into the navy, in the training centre "Palaska" in Skaramagas. He did his basic training there, which was 50 days and then, again with ties he was transferred to the headquarters of the General Staff of the navy, i.e. Ministry of Defence. Another curious detail, which is generally known, is that Tsipras is faithful and that he has been living together with his school love Peristera Baziana for more than 17 years now. He calls her Betty, they have a son - two and a half years old and now, they are awaiting their second child. She stays away from the spotlight, but sometimes accompanies him on his public statements. Apparently, Alexis Tsipras is ready to raise their two children in a country with a nationalized banking system and with the public sector replacing the private initiative. How many other Greeks are ready to follow him will become clear in the next elections in June.


Tags: PoliticsAlexis TsiprasSYRIZAElectionsBank nationalization
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