Saturday November 1, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
18o C
13o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
For the Germans, a Pyrrhic victory

By Nikos Xydakis

Cyprus’s ongoing crisis has confirmed an old principle: Alliances are dynamic in nature. They are constantly defined and redefined depending on the interests of the various players involved.

The Eastern Mediterranean island nation’s recently elected President Nicos Anastasiades and his predecessor, Dimitris Christofias, made the opposite mistakes. The latter overestimated the Russian factor, while the former underestimated the price of unconditional compliance.

Both of these politicians for that matter underestimated their historic responsibility toward the people who voted them into power. At the same time, most people on the continent somehow failed to notice the increasing Germanization of the European Union – and particularly of the eurozone, where Berlin has basically felt free to impose its own policy mix (or, in some cases, its survival rulebook) on the other weaker members of the common currency area.

The above was recently described by Malta’s finance minister, who was sitting between his German and Cypriot counterparts during the crucial Friday meeting. Similar comments were made by the ministers of Spain and Luxembourg.

So long as once-dominant France keeps silent and Italy remains without a government, Germany will be able to impose its will and national interest as an ad hoc European rule. The fundamental European principles of peace and solidarity, of equality before the law and the value of convergence are now being interpreted from within the prism of economic power.

Three years into the eurozone crisis, the crucial power shift on the continent is clear: The Commission and the European Parliament have been substituted by the Eurogroup, the European Central Bank and Berlin – and even the International Monetary Fund. Big decisions are no longer made by elected or accountable bilateral bodies and institutions.

Euro Commissioner Olli Rehn, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso and European Council President Herman van Rompuy are no more than straw men. They represent the self-reproduction of the Eurocrats in Brussels, but remain a far cry from the historic principles of European integration and democracy – and feel intimidated by the German hegemon.

Keep in mind however that the crushing of this tiny island is not a victory for Germany in the long term. It’s a rupture in the euro area and more cause for euroskepticism and suspicion of Germany.

ekathimerini.com , Friday March 22, 2013 (23:50)  
Checks and balances
Opening hours on the agenda
The judiciary’s responsibility
Findings raise eyebrows
Ministry swap halts talk of reshuffle as reforms eyed
Prime Minister Antonis Samaras on Friday appointed Nikos Dendias as defense minister, replacing outgoing Dimitris Avramopoulos, who assumes the European Commission’s immigration portfolio ne...
Turkish-Greek cooperation in Aegean helps stem flow of migrants
Closer cooperation between Greek and Turkish coast guard authorities has led to 11,000 undocumented migrants being prevented from entering Greek borders and returned to the neighboring count...
Inside News
Disposable income of households fell 10.3 pct in one year
The reduction of Greek households’ disposable incomes in 2013 compared with 2012 amounted to a total of 14 billion euros, the biggest since the start of the crisis according to data released...
Banks unhappy with bad loans bill
Bank officials are expressing serious reservations about the efficiency of the government’s bill regarding nonperforming corporate loans, arguing that the target set by the Development Minis...
Inside Business
BASKETBALL
Spanoulis played Zeus for Olympiakos against Neptunas
Captain Vassilis Spanoulis helped Olympiakos narrowly avoid an upset on Friday as it defeated Euroleague debutant Neptunas Klaipeda 85-81 in overtime in Lithuania to preserve its perfect sta...
BASKETBALL
Obradovic watches Greens thrash his Fenerbahce
The second homecoming of former Panathinaikos coach Zeljko Obradovic, now at Fenerbahce, was not as emotional as last year’s, but it was certainly was the night of an emphatic triumph for th...
Inside Sports
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Spanoulis played Zeus for Olympiakos against Neptunas
2. Disposable income of households fell 10.3 pct in one year
3. Banks unhappy with bad loans bill
4. State debtor numbers grew in September
5. Reform plan among conditions
6. Ministry swap halts talk of reshuffle as reforms eyed
more news
Today
This Week
1. Checks and balances
2. Opening hours on the agenda
3. Archaeologists find underground vault at Amphipolis tomb
4. Man shot dead, woman injured in Vathis square attack
5. Greek retail sales rise for third month in a row
6. Cyprus’s Georgiades bets on economy for Irish-style bailout exit
Today
This Week
1. Austria’s creative bookkeeping beats Greece on secret debts
2. End of reason, end of humanity
3. Clean bill of health for Greek banks from stress tests
4. Samaras pledges action after flash floods in Athens
5. Eurobank, National Bank restructurings eliminate capital gap
6. Athens flood damage assessed, compensation payments to begin
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.