November 23, 2017
..the Greek government too
Panos Kammenos, the Greek defence minister, is a weak link in Alexis Tsipras government. New Democracy called him for a Q&A session in parliament over his involvement in a failed munitions deal with Saudi Arabia. Tsipras upped the game by requesting to postpone the session, as he said he wants to be present at the debate but is not able due to a visit to Paris. New Democracy rejected his request for a postponement. They see the issue as a 'first class' scandal that could be used to pressure the government. A preliminary judicial investigation has been launched, too.
Kammenos has so far been able to fight off accusations of wrongdoing, but has had to call on the backing of Tsipras and his party. Some Syriza MPs are unhappy to be put into this position, which prompted a discussion about the alliance between Syriza and Anel, the junior coalition partner of which Kammenos is the leader. Though this discussion has calmed down, it could easily flare up again with new allegations.
Macropolis writes that the chances of the government falling over this are slim. It would take some very serious and credible revelations to trigger a potential split of the coalition.
But if the scandal continues, Syriza might have to reconsider its coalition partners. What about the new left alliance under Fofi Gennimata? Gennimata dismisses the idea of a coalition with Syriza at this stage. The founding congress of the new alliance party will not take place until January. But she does not completely rule out working with Syriza in the future. After the end of the bailout programme, when painful austerity measures no longer have to be agreed upon, a grand alliance of the centre-left and the left is indeed a real possibility.