Antonis Samaras, prime minister of Greece, admitted that he was worried by the calls for a military coup coming from paramilitary organizations, staffed with former officers who have served in the country’s elite military units. A post published on the website of the Special Forces Reserve Union called for the creation of a government “guaranteed by the armed forces”. Simos Kedikoglu, government spokesman, told the Guardian that “the overwhelming majority in the armed forces are devoted to our democracy. The few who are not will face the consequences.”
The recent legal actions against the radical Golden Dawn party and arrests of its leaders could have played a role in the radicalization of the army’s reservists.
A recent report commissioned by the European Parliament noted that Greece was the most corrupt state in the 28-nation bloc and voiced fears over the rise of far-right extremism in the country. The report’s conclusions are grim: “Researchers found Greece overwhelmed by high unemployment, social unrest, endemic corruption and a severe disillusionment with the political establishment”.
It is obvious that such an environment is perfect for a military coup. Some unofficial reports claim that the radical Golden Dawn party has tremendous support within the military and law enforcement agencies. The government’s crackdown on the Golden Dawn may have prompted the radicals within the military to look for nondemocratic and nonpolitical options of obtaining power.
German’s finance minister has admitted that Greece will need a new IMF bailout in the next several months. IMF bailouts are always accompanied by budget cuts and unpopular political measures. It is possible that the next Greek bailout will have to be supported by the German army, because the Greek army is on the verge of turning against the Greek government.