It sounds irrational, as irrational as war is: a country in the deepest economic crisis, which for the last eight years has been living on loans from its partners and the IMF, because of its inability to borrow from the markets, is going forward with a defence expenditure which even the richest economy would covet.

So the question that arises is, is there money for military spending? One poses the question not in order to probe where every last euro to buy four frigates will come from, but rather because, at a time of obvious weakness, and shortly before the completion of the bailout programme, a decision of high cost and questionable utility is being made.

This does not mean that a country that wants peace should not prepare for war, as the ancient Roman treatise on war taught us.

The defensive posture of a country that is a member of strong, transnational organisations, such as the European Union and Nato, must have different characteristics. The Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDB) of the EU may be in its nascent stages, but with the proper diplomatic manoeuvres, it could yield desired results.

Why does Athens feel so isolated as to pursue a solution that brings to mind the previous century’s sense of insecurity?

This is a question that the government, which steadily downgraded the geopolitical environment, and now suddenly dons the admiral’s uniform, must answer.