Open brief uit Griekenland aan de leiders van Europa
Roos Mavrikou-Zevenhuizen, geboren en getogen in Rotterdam en sinds een aantal jaren woonachtig op het Griekse eiland Skyros ondervindt met haar man en kinderen dagelijks de ellende waarin de Europse bezuingingspolitiek de Grieken heeft gestort. Zij stuurde een brief aan een aantal leiders van Europa. Een brief die vermoedelijk zal verdwijnen in de bureaulade van een of andere ambtenaar. Vandaar dat ik hem, met toestemming van Roos, hier publiceer als open brief:
Skyros, Greece, 05-02-‘15
Sincere mr. Dijsselbloem, mr. Junckert, mr. Schauble, mr. Schultz, mr. Draghi and anyone else responsible for European policies,
I suspect it will take a lot for this letter to actually reach any one of you, but I hope this cry of the heart eventually will.
My name is Roos Mavrikou, born and raised in the Netherlands and since 2007 living in Greece, with my Greek (hardworking) husband and our two small daughters of six and three years old.
Every single one of you is aware of the problems in Greece and still some facts seem to reach you and your colleges in Brussels only as such. Facts. That around 27% of the working population is without a job seems only a percentage in your eyes. For us it is reality. Life. That not even 10% of those people may apply for government help for less than 400 Euros per month, for no longer then a year, also seems to reach you only as a statistic. While behind those statistics are families living in this country with the same costs of living as example in the Netherlands, or in Germany. That statistics has pushed a large part of them into poverty.
I am a higher educated, realistic and critical person, but Greece couldn’t continue like it has been the last five years and therefore I understand and support the Greek government in all its requests for renegotiation. That is not radical for a country that after so many years of misconduct –and I do not mean only the Greek government(s), but certainly also the extreme reforms imposed by the troika, which the country, contrary of public believe, has mostly followed through on- have brought only depression.
I could make this letter even longer by describing why this country reached a certain point, but it is fighting huge prejudices.
However, when my daughter of not even seven years old, has to go to school in the winter and comes home with the message she wore her jacket all day, due to lack of heating, and the same thing happens to us, when we have to go to the local hospital, where the limited personnel also walks around in their jackets, for the same reason, I fear that in Brussel people do not realise how dramatic life has gotten here and Greek people are not ungrateful (as media has pictured us now), but mostly desperate. That’s why I see it as my obligation as a citizen of Greece, and even more so as a mother of two young children, to write this letter in the hope all of you will rethink how you view this situation in Greece and the rest of Europe. Nobody can allege with dry eyes that the approach of Greece’s crisis has worked.
People here deserve more than continuing forms of threats and oppression. We at least deserve dignity and good functioning pillars of society; such as education and healthcare. Those have crumbled down due to strong austerity measures imposed by you and your colleagues from Brussels. Something that can only be considered as shameful.
I am asking you for understanding, for reasonability, and I am asking you to look deep into your hearts and stop looking at us as the black sheep of Europe, or mere statistics, but as people such as you and your family and friends, who only want a normal live for themselves and their loved ones.
Awaiting your reply,