Friday, July 17, 2015


The Greek crisis has laid bare a serious fault line in the European workings.  Difficult monetary and financial problems need therapy. Although the Greek patient had to pay for his own wrongdoings, he was also allowed to enter the Emergency Room.  Nevertheless, the ailing one appears at times more eager to shoot the (German) doctor with live ammunition rather than with rubber bullets.  As a consequence, the almost structural meltdown in Europe as a whole needs to be attended to without further delay. Fractured personal relations must be repaired.

The situation started to deteriorate before, when the EU found itself besieged externally by an assertive Russia and internally by growing disenchantment related to immigration and slow growth.  The EU machinery failed on all accounts. The claims for solidarity and closer cooperation started to sound hollow before Greece entered Dante's inferno. The former acted as an accelerator of all things going wrong.

Old demons have long shadows. Having to witness how former prejudice and antipathy are played out so shamelessly should be a wake-up call. The German philosopher Jurgen  Habermas wrote a devastating  J'accuse regarding Europe's sad return to divisions which are dangerous because the ruling mediocracy--contrary to what happens in the IMF--often acts as if it were solely preoccupied with backroom deals rather than with facing the abyss.

Immigration, terrorism, cowardice have infected the core of the former European ideal. The negative Zeitgeist could paralyze further indispensable creative thinking. Personal chemistry amongst Europeans is a quality on the verge of extinction. Instead, one is confronted with opportunistic alliances which further undermine the cohesion of all. 

The EU can only regain some of its credibility if it becomes again an "enlightened republic" rather than an employment bureau for all "have beens". The Commission is bloated because the choice was made that member states needed a turf, even on the back of the believable. The ECB chair is equally shadowed by the representatives of the national banks in the euro zone. And one could go on...

The Greek crisis is bad for the Greeks but it has also shown the EU at its worst. We haven't seen the end yet and the dreaded "Grexit" is still on all parties' minds.  
Band-aids don't last!

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