The Jam-on-it professionals and BoG fifth columnists did for Greece in the end
After all the raised expectations of recent weeks, the Hellenic flag appears to have been lowered…and replaced with the white flag of surrender. Nothing is ever entirely as it seems, but ranging across all the issues brought into focus by this cynical exercise in Might-is-Right diplomacy, the best one can do at this stage is offer some mind-concentrating conclusions about what the outcome has really been.
1. Effectively, the eurogroupies (and we must include Draghi in their number, however rarely he appears onstage) have demanded nothing less than the surrender of Greek sovereignty in return for more bailout monies which will not, of course, bail them out. The medium by which the EU will ensure value for money is the straightforward introduction of a secured loan process: the setting up of an asset-filled bank account. The bank involved, KfW, is owned entirely by the German government; it operates out of Luxembourg – a blatant tax-evasion regime controlled by EC boss Jean-Claude Juncker. Thus both factions in the egroupe v EC squabble have obtained equal pounds of Hellenic flesh.
2. Like Luxembourg itself, the KfW bank has a somewhat cloudy horizon of financial history. On October 22nd 2008, the bank transferred €319m of funds to US bank Lehman Brothers in what many have since characterised as a Washington plea to help help save Lehman, and thus avoid the meltdown that swiftly followed. Like the dutiful American vassal it is, the Bundesgovernment sent the cash…but it was too little too late. Police raided the KfW bank at the time, but charges
were never brought.
3. The KfW lack-of-trust fund was set up jointly by the Troika and BoG boss Yannis Stournaras during his disastrously spineless spell as Finance Minister under the ND/PASOK coalition of collaboration. Thus Syriza’s freedom of movement has been curtailed by the Greek Central Bank, in the same way that the European Parliament has been usurped by Draghi’s
all-powerfully unelected ECB.
4. Like every peacetime politician in history, Syriza leader Alexis Tsipras overpromised and paid the price. He thought a bluff would work with Troika2, and it didn’t. My view has never differed: from the moment he was ambushed last February by the Draghischauble mafia, the polite retreat of Varoufakis – under orders, it seems, from Tsipras – was all the data the Troikanauts needed to conclude that Syriza was piss and wind. Had Yanis Varoufakis arrived at the meeting with a mandate to play the “f**k you, I’m walking out” card, the bullies would’ve been found out.
5. Do we therefore blame Syriza’s failure on a lack of guts by Tsipras? Perhaps, but the realities of Greek society were in his mind at all times: Tsipras never had a mandate to quit the eurozone – and he knew it.
6. Somebody – or bodies – on the EU side were shrewd enough to see that the smug professional classes in Greece had done well out of the euro, and thus (as usual) wanted jam and cream on the bread and butter: “yes, by all means resistance, but keep us in the eurozone”. Two years ago, The Slog berated Tsipras for dropping his commitment to euro-exit; but his own
polls told him he would never gain power without doing just that. In the end, it has come back to first haunt and then destroy him. The Syriza leader simply didn’t have the voter support he needed to walk away. The second you don’t walk away from the unacceptable, you are sleepwalking into control by the merciless.
7. The very well-heeled smuggies who wouldn’t give Syriza the silver bullets will of course now have a field day giving all of us who had faith in Tsipras what-for on the grounds of believing in the ‘gutless Left’. I’ve been trolled by these insufferably cheerful Charlies for the last six days. But as a veteran observer of Greek haut-bourgeois double standards (and having once been on the emotional receiving end of its ruthless materialism) I know well enough who to blame for the
failure to face out Brussels-am-Berlin. And that’s the same bunch of whores who – come Ottomans, Nazis and Draghis – take the brown envelopes while looking the other way….to ensure nobody is watching their treason.
At the start of this marathon circular journey, Varoufakis boasted that his Party was “going to take down and destroy the privileged élites who really hold Greece back”. Troika2 ensured that, from Day 1, Syriza would be far too busy with its homework ever to achieve that goal. Corrupt to the end, the EU prefers to do business with the corrupt.
We can only hope that enough neutrals will take that conclusion away from this mess, and remember the truth when their turn comes.