Feb 25, 2012

Iceland Compared with Greece against the Crisis: Why & How Greece was Led to Give Away Sovereign Rights

This just might be the most important post I will write on the Greek Outlook for some time, so pay attention.

Greek prime minister G.A.Papandreous hanging from a noose as a clown during protests in front of Parliament, 2011

"You can say with certainty that Iceland has the world record in remission households out of the crisis. The country has done everything needed in a crisis, following the book. Any economist would agree" said Lars Christensen, chief emerging markets economist at Danske Bank in Copenhagen.

The measures taken by Iceland to revive the crisis of 2008, when the banks went into bankruptcy for the amount of 85 billion dollars, were supremely effective resulting in freeing the burden of debt once and for all.
Of course, to do all these Iceland played very intelligently its geostrategic "ace": When it bankrupt and rioting began in the peaceful country, when none of its Western allies give any assistance (Iceland being in NATO) the country began "courting" with Russia for a month.
Once the Prime Minister of Russia V.Poutin announced a program of economic assistance worth tens of billions of dollars to rescue the Icelandic economy "within 24 hours Britain and Norway said they will directly aid Iceland " as they eventually did.

To transport the issue from Iceland to the Crisis in Greece and to compare how differently the crisis was purposefully handled here:

I am reminding you that Greece had flirted with Russia indeed, closing the deal of the Burgas-Alexandroupolis natural gas pipe line, during the administration of Kostas Karamanlis. The then prime minister was soon cut short of his 4-year-spanning elected administration by the sudden eruption of the Vatopedi scandal in spring 2008 (and which has been contested successfully as fabricated, as you can see for yourself in multiple-sides testimonies). The Vatopedi scandal was communicated in the Greek media as causing a tremendously large damage to state funds, an image that was then transplated as such to the international media, but the official investigators appointed by the Greek state have not discovered any real Greek state monetary loss in the transactions.

The administration of George Papandreou was forwarded, winning the elections in autumn 2009. I use "forwarded" purposefully: An article in the New York based Greek newspaper “Ethnikos Kirikas” (National Messenger) was claiming back then that the #3 in power at the US Whitehouse was in Athens in the summer prior to the 2009 federal elections to make sure that Papandreou won the election from the then prime minister of the ND party Kostas Karamanlis! Why were the US interested in securing Papandreou on the seat of prime-minister?
Karamanlis had already vetoed FYROM's entrance in NATO alliance on grounds of national name dispute and false ethnic minorities claim arising from it. He had also rejected the UN's proposal on the Cyrpus issue (a proposal that would arguably bear a heavy toll on the divided island for the price of closure in the almost 40-year long division; a Carthaginian peace, if you will). Karamanlis was not the most well liked man in Washington, let's just say. Even democratic elections can be swayed by the power of the media and the media, local and international, were opposing Karamanlis right & left during that eventful period, probably directed by some higher power in cahoots with political and financial nuclei. (Greeks were furious at the spending of state money by corrupt politicians. The subsequent trials and proceedings have since resulting in absolving then ministers of punible blame, even though I'm absolutely certain there has been corruption that hasn't been tackled yet; but in other areas than those brought out to the light, which I find -shall we say- telling...).

This autumn-2009-emerging G.A.Papandreou administration was already in communications with the International Monetary Fund for a bailout and financial aid, according to Dominique Strauss-Khan himself (then head of IMF), even before they had got hold of the economical figures, before the elections!! Strauss-Khan is quoted by a French reporter on French TV as saying that: “when I say that the IMF came to Greece and we wrapped things up in 15 days I am obviously exaggerating. We wrapped things up in 15 days because we worked for months before that with Greek authorities" (watch the admission video in its entirety here, putting the frame of the talks in autumn 2009). Coincidence?

Essentially Papandreou therefore flat out LIED to the Greek people telling them repeatedly "there IS money!" pre-electorally to win the popular vote in autumn 2009, while simultansously speeding up processes that led up to the open intervention of the IMF in Greece months after it was secretly agreed upon. Why? Several VERY intriguing questions pop up!

The whole business has always presented in the same tone: "we are going to help 'save" Greece'. To which Greeks mutter between themselves: "please, don't save us any more!" Finally the international press is seeing how there is truth in that, comparing the Greek bailout to the Afghan War: "In Greece as in Afghanistan, there are profound negative consequences associated with both action and inaction. It's not clear that a good solution exists, but everyone feels compelled to muddle on anyway. There's a suspicion that, at best, all our planning will only delay the inevitable to a more convenient time: don't let Afghanistan collapse until the Taliban are a bit weaker, don't let Greece collapse until the rest of Europe is in recovery and able to absorb it." Interestingly Afganistan and Greece are two territories where opposition is difficult to curb; the first due to terrain and intricasy of local leaders nuclei, the second due to a long tradition of resistance & disobediance amongst the people.

The Burgas-Alexandroupoli project was eventually dropped, for reasons that appear unrelated to political machinations at first sight, at the end of 2011 (The official reason is declared as Bulgarian opposition of environmentalists).Though a project that was in talks since the mid-1990s, and several deals & details were signed collaterally by all countries involved during the mid-2000s (when Karamanlis was prime-minister), the construction of the actual pipe-line was scheduled to begin in October 2009. Coincidence? 
G.A. Papandreous was always very opposed to it, despite it being a project that would generate thousands of jobs in Northern Greece and would boost the economy tremendously. Why then? What did he discuss with Putin when abandoning the project in a visit to Moscow in 2010? The data linked talk about offers of financial aid by Putin at interests as low as 2-3%, investments throughout the country and benefits arising from the use of Neorion shipbuilding yard on Syros island. All these were rejected by Papandreou! Obviously no association with Russia whatsoever was intended, sought or evaluated positively by the Papandreous administration, despite being the leader of the Greek Socialist party (PASOK) nonetheless.

Proposals by China and the Arab world regarding huge investements in Greece that would have resulted in a tangible boost in the economy have ALSO mysteriously been rejected by the G.A.Papandreous administration without further justification. Coincidence?

The words "high treason" are on many Greeks' lips regarding the people involved.

G.A Papandreou (bottom left) and A.Samaras (upper right), mates in the same band.

Let's see the revealing timeline for a clarification of my point:

September 2007: Winning the elections for the second time, means another term of Kostas Karamanlis as Greek prime minister (scheduled span of administration: till early autumn 2011, i.e. 4 years, as per Greek constitution).

Spring 2008: The Vatopedi scandal erupts. Agressive local media coverage on claims of state being at a loss & implication of ministers.This is tranmitted as such through the international media as well.

October 2009: Karamanlis announces elections just one year and a month after being elected, is defeated by PASOK leader George A. Papandreou and resigns from the leadership of his party after 12 years.

November 2009: Papandreou definitely in talks with Dominique Strauss-Khan over intervention of IMF in Greece (according to Strauss-Khan'sown admission on video as detailed above)

February 2010: The Greek people is told that intervention from the IMF must be sought at all costs: "we're sinking", the prime minister says. Assurances that the package will ensure getting out of the crisis by 2011 are given.

Spring 2010: The IMF and the Troika arrive in Athens. An unprecented in the Western world in its severity austerity measures package is proposed and immediately implemented by the government. This isn't the last one: two more follow, the latest in February 2012, dropping the quality of living by a steep 50% for most people, leaving 1:3 of Greek living below the limit of poverty.

October 2010: Visit of Papandreou to Moscow when every proposition of aid/investing is rejected. Abadonment of the gas pipeline project.

June 2011: Strauss-Khan, head of IMF, is abruptly charged with a rape charge in New York city; he's prosecuted and sent to trial. The reactions are spanning the whole spectrum. (The case is eventually dropped because of lack of evidence, as per his lawyer Ben Brafman: "What happened in that room, so long as we have now confirmed that it wasn't criminal, is really not something that needs to be discussed publicly." Is it a coincidence it happened in New York? To a poor hotel worker of coloured skin too? The Wikileaks creator is also charged with rape in Sweden? Coincidence? Is -a foregone conclusion- the feminist protestation regarding issues of such sensitive nature (and of coloured rights against discrimination) an assured means to press -and press hard!- on certain public figures?
Straus-Khan is let off all too late: He has already lost the leadership of the IMF and has been absent from the crucial late-July 2011 Greek bailout decisions, plus he has damaged every chance of filing for French presidency in the elections against Sarkzy. Strauss-Khan incidentally is a philleline.)

July 2011: Large protests in Athens, the Greek capital, oppose the augmented demands of the IMF and the EuroGroup resulting in significant "hair-cutting" part of the debt, thus meaning Greece won't be able to get out in the free market to borrow money any time soon. The measures are passed through a flood of Greek "indignandos" at Syntagma square in front of the Parliament, protesting peacefully from all walks of life, the size of which Greece hasn't seen since probably the re-establishment of democracy in 1974.
Officials insist the measures are necessary if painful and by 2014 Greece will be out in the markets again, if they're implemented.

November 2011: In an unprecedented confusion about what will happen about the continuation or not of the course already taken, Papandreou throws everyone off with a suggestion of a Referendum of the Greek people as to whether they will vote "Yes" to austerity measures & thus stay within the Eurozone or "No" and therefore exit the Eurozone (and effectively the European Union as well, a situation dreaded by at least 75% of Greeks) He retracts the proposition in a matter of 24 hours, claiming he proposed it fearing of a military coup in Greece. This weirdly coincides with the long-scheduled change of military heads in all Greek arms. Coincidence? Papandreou manages to be therefore hurriedly invited at the Cannes G20 meeting, where further actions are decided for the "saving" of Greece by the powerful of the world and he has personal meetings with Sarkozy and Merkel.

December 2011: A new coalition government is enstated, not out of elective processes, but thanks to Papandreou finally stepping down from prime-minister (absorbing the public anger) in favour of Europe-&-US-approved & assigned Lukas Papademos. Papademos is the banker of the National Bank who was cognizant (and some say complicit!) to the machinations of former prime-minister Kostas Simitis who ~assisted by Goldman Sachs~ "cooked" the national economic figures at the time in order to meet EU standards and enter the Eurozone in 2001. What do Papademos, Mario Draghi (of the European Central Bank) and Mario Monti (assigned Italy PM) have in common? A connection to Goldman Sachs, as reported by London correspondent Marc Roche in French paper Le Monde. Coincidence?
Is Greece serving as the Trojan Horse for Goldman Sachs to destroy the European countries' solidarity? (as reported by Russian Pravda). That would be poetic justice. Or just the canary in the coal mine?

February 2012: A 3rd severe austerity measures package is sanctioned by the EuroGroup, in attendance of the infamous PSI (the acceptance of losses by private creditors holding Greek debt) and implemented in Greece amidst angered protests with the threat of imminent bankruptcy and exit of the Eurozone: This is the second Memorandum and its text effectually forsakes sovereign rights to just about any income-producing sector of the country (state companies, land, oil reserves, rights to potential exploration of natural resources etc) for the forseeable future ~a special bank account to creditors is opened that will be paid first before the state meets ANY other of its own needs (i.e. pensions, salaries, state work, medical needs through social security etc). The Eurogroup Memorandum in February 2012 is estimating Greece's sovereign debt by 2020 to be equal to the amount of debt the country had in 2009!!! A more permanent position of European officials supervising measures implementation is effectuated and FOUR more such job positions are announced! [Rejoice European Brussells clerk, you too can take your holidays ad inifinitum in sunny, beautiful Greece and get paid for it!!]

Bottom-line: Greece is officially becoming a protectorate of the European powers and the USA through a scheme that is just now becoming quite evident.

Kostas Karamanlis is totally silent for every matter of the political life in Greece and Europe ever since and rumour has it that he has been threatened by external political forces (as of yet unknown) for his and his family's lives. Coincidence? This rumour is as yet unsubstantiated but sounds logical enough; a vast amount of Greeks consider it a very plausible train of events and an explanation to the whole situation: ousting the undesirable for the puppet. 

Interesting factoid for further thought: The opposition leader Antonis Samaras, leader of the New Democracy party and successor to Kostas Karamanlis, although severely opposing the memorandum, in the end voted for it in February 2012. Samaras and G.A Papandreou not only are both Harvard School alumni and friends at the time of their student days, they were also roommates at Amherst College. They also played in the same band, as attested by the photo above. Coincidence?

The conclusions, your own...

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