The Greece-France security agreement signed last week is expected to lead to the establishment of French naval bases in Greece and Cyprus, according to a security analyst. Dr Ioannis Mazis believes that expanding military collaboration with France will make Greece more secure.
Dr Mazis, professor of economic geography and geopolitical theory at the National and Capodistrian University of Athens and chairman of the Department of Turkish Studies and Modern Asian Studies, has been a supporter of the agreement for many years.
He uses the term “merry carom billiards” to describe the defense agreement between Greece and France, born out of the recent AUKUS defense agreement between the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia.
Greece and France united by a diplomatic “merry billiard table”
Mazis says the AUKUS defense pact is a nuclear pact, created to stand up to China, the Asian superpower. He believes that, in a diplomatic “merry billiard pile-up”, AUKUS accidentally provoked the need for the Greece-France defense pact, “as it should be”.
“The United States has been the main protector-guarantor of peace in the Mediterranean and the Middle East, ”he said. “But now he has to focus on the Pacific, so France, the only nuclear and military superpower in Europe, can now take his place. “
Mazis believes the defense agreement should be extended to French military bases in Greece and Cyprus. He says it is a choice that would guarantee peace and stability in both countries.
“France needs to create bases in the Mediterranean, in order to serve its own strategic interests in the region,” he said. “Greece and Cyprus should take advantage of their geostrategic positions. They should cement the agreement, to include permanent French air bases with soldiers on their soil ”.
France can guarantee peace and stability in the Mediterranean
The professor even suggests certain areas where these French bases should be built. “They should be on one of the Dodecanese Islands in the Aegean Sea and in the (unoccupied) northern part of Cyprus. “
He also believes that Greece and Cyprus are not the only countries that need France’s defense capabilities, saying even Israel could benefit from such a pact with France. “Israel’s existence is constantly threatened and it needs France,” he adds.
The new defense and security agreement between Greece and France was signed by the Greek prime minister and the French president last week. It includes an agreement for the sale of three frigates, with the option for a fourth.
Under the terms of the agreement, France pledged to provide immediate military assistance to Greece – and vice versa – in the event of an attack by a third country. This also includes countries from one of their alliances (such as Turkey, which is a member of NATO).
From another perspective, in an exclusive interview with Greek Reporter, diplomatic, defense and geostrategic analyst Athanasios Drougos was quite critical of the deal. He speaks of puzzled “shadows” and thinks that this runs counter to transatlantic treaties – in particular NATO.