By F. Stephen Larrabee and Charles Ries

高昂的防务支出是导致希腊遭遇经济困难的原因之一,事实上,该国家的军费支出占GDP比例是欧洲国家中最高的。而与土耳其关系的改善将可以令希腊总理乔治·帕潘德里欧——他将于本周与来访的土耳其总理雷杰普·塔伊普·埃尔多安会面——得以削减防务支出,并增加本国经济从破产边缘起死回生的可能性。

改善希-土两国关系不仅会受到外国投资者和欧盟官员的赞赏,更将得到希腊的北约盟国,尤其是美国的欢迎。在爱琴海上空,希腊和土耳其军机的摩擦时有发生,在2006年就有一名希腊战斗机飞行员在与土耳其对手的空中对峙中丧生。

此类事件将很可能导致这两个北约盟国之间擦枪走火,引发意想不到的军事冲突,而这类冲突在1996年2月的伊米亚岛(土耳其称之为卡尔达克岛,两国均宣称对该岛拥有主权)危机中就差点爆发。正当北约在阿富汗地区焦头烂额之际,爱琴海上的内乱自然是联盟最不愿意看到的。

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