chapter  4
58 Pages

Democratization and the Greek State

In recent times Greek political developments have offered many surprises. A military coup d’etat in 1967 by relatively obscure army colonels abolished parliamentarism. The junta rebuffed a counter coup led by King Constantine late in that year and forced him into exile in England. In 1973 a coup within the junta replaced the original coup leaders. In 1974 the new military regime collapsed. The conservative civilian government that took over restored democratic norms. In a national referendum late in 1974, voters overwhelm­ ingly opted for a constitutional republic, thereby electorally voiding the al­ most 150-year tradition of monarchical rule. In 1981 Andreas Papandreou’s Pan-Hellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK), a self-proclaimed Marxist-So­ cialist party proposing to lead Greece on a democratic road to socialism, came to power. Its election interrupted a long succession of rule by con­ servative governments and military regimes, and its tenure in the 1980s raised important theoretico-praxis questions regarding the realization of its pro­ posal.