The Agora


Planes, frigates and assistance clauses - Greece's new defence deals and the Turkish reaction

Season 3, Ep. 3

Greece recently signed two major defence deals, one with France and another with the USA. On this episode, Nick Malkoutzis and Phoebe Fronista examine the significance and implications of these agreements.

MacroPolis foreign policy analyst Alexandra Voudouri explains why we should take note of these pacts, which include the purchase of at least three new French frigates. Alexandra also looks at some of the criticism about the accords and takes a broader look at the direction of Greek foreign policy.

When signing both defence agreements, Athens clearly had its relations with Turkey in mind. To get a better understanding of how these developments have gone down in Turkey, Nick spoke to Aydin Selcen, an Istanbul-based commentator and former diplomat.

Also, Turkish journalist and writer Mehves Evin spoke to The Agora about the domestic difficulties troubling President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and how this may feed into Ankara's actions in the Aegean and beyond.

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The lives and legacy of Mikis Theodorakis

Season 3, Ep. 2
Earlier this month, Greece lost one of the most emblematic figures of its modern era, composer Mikis Theodorakis, who died on September 2 at the age of 96.Theodorakis was a multi-talented and multi-faceted figure who left his mark due to his radical politics and public interventions as well as his ground-breaking music, which blended Greek popular sounds with classic elements.On this show, we take a closer look at the influence of this prolific, towering figure. Phoebe Fronista speaks to Dr Panos Stavrianides, an entrepreneur, educator and active member of the Greek American diaspora about the impact Theodorakis’s music and political stance had on him and other Greeks living abroad.Also, Nick Malkoutzis speaks to Dimitris A. Sotiropoulos, a Professor of Political Science at the University of Athens and senior research fellow at the ELIAMEP think-tank, about what impact Theodorakis had on the public sphere and shaping modern Greece’s identity. Their discussion also touches on whether the composer’s passing marks the end of the public intellectual in Greece, and whether this matters.This episode also is interspersed with Theodrakis’s music, much of which is played by the Mandragoras group in Frankfurt, Germany and Achilleas and Nino Anastasiades.Mandragoras: and Nino Anastasiades: background on TheodorakisBBC documentary by Maria Margaronis: Mikis Theodorakis Remembered: Guardian obituary by Gail Holst-Warhaft:, a Greek for all by Nikos Konstandaras: