Chronicle of A Death Foreclosed
One year ago today, a seventy-seven year old pharmacist called Dimitris Christoulas took his own life. He shot himself in the head in Syntagma Square in front of the Greek Parliament. He left this note (translation follows):
“This Government of occupation and collaboration* has quite literally eliminated my ability to survive, based on a dignified pension into which, for 35 years, I alone paid (with no help from the state.
Since my age precludes me from personal, dynamic reaction (this is not to say that had a first Greek picked up a Kalashnikov, I wouldn’t have been the second one) I can find no solution other than a dignified ending, before I am reduced to looking through rubbish bins for food.
I believe that our youth with no future will take up arms one day and in this very Constitution Square will hang the nation’s traitors upside-down, like the Italians did to Mussolini in 1945 (in Milan’s Piazza Loreto).”
Commenting on behalf of the Government, Panos Mpeglitis MP said: “In such cases one must be cautious with one’s comments. I can say that this man was obviously brave and sensitive. However, we cannot connect irrationally this suicide with the country’s economic circumstances.”
* The original note refers to the “Tsolakoglou Government”, which was the Greek government during the WWII years of German occupation. It was appointed by and collaborated with Hitler. Recently, this has become a nickname for Greek coalition governments which have supported Troika imposed economic sanctions.