Greece: The Pearl Cast Before Swine
• JULY 7, 2015
Greece is the pearl of Mediterranean, the place generations of
foreigners from Lord Byron to Graves to Fowles have
fallen in love with. From philosophy to feta, from history to yoghurt,
from poetry to honey they provided the example to follow. Their priests
preserve the pristine faith; their fighters defeated Mussolini; their
Helen is the epitome of female beauty. They also make lousy wine called retsina and
listen to loud dreadful music called bouzouki so
we would temper our Hellenophilia.
Now they have given us another example to follow: how to beat banksters
at their own game. The spectacular victory of the Syriza government in
Greece at the national referendum was quite unexpected: the polls
wavered between an indecisive result and straightforward support of the
EU plans around 51:49. However, the Greeks strongly confirmed the
mandate of the government. The main problem was and remains the Syriza’s
resolve and determination.
The ruling party took an unnecessary risk while calling for referendum,
for they had already won the elections under their own slogans just a
few months ago. This implied their wobbliness, as if they would prefer
to lose and pass the hot potato to somebody else. Moreover, they did not
try to win the referendum: no campaign for NO, no media coverage of
demos for NO. Did they wish to lose or to win with a slightest possible
margin? Possibly. The Greek people rejected the stratagem and called
upon them to proceed.
Now it is the business of the government to organise a smooth and fast
Grexit from the Eurozone and switch to the new Drachma. A really
decisive government would leave the EU and NATO, turning the tables
completely. Refusing the bailout is good but not enough.
The Greeks were right to reject paying the debts, for these debts were
forced upon them by the giant vampire squid, Goldman Sachs, in words of Matt
Taibbi. “The first thing you need to know about Goldman
Sachs is that it’s everywhere. The world’s most powerful investment bank
is a great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity,
relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like
money”. As we now know, Goldman Sachs (you do not have to be an
anti-Semite to hate them) cooked the book,s falsely pretending Greece
had a high credit rating though they knew of its huge debts. When the
debts snowballed, they pulled the rug and collapsed Greece’s rating,
bailing out banks at the expense of the European taxpayer.
Out of €320 billion, Greece received and used about €20 billion, while
the principal sum went to the banksters. Greece could not pay it off:
after five years of trying, the country is in worse shape and in deeper
debt than it ever was. Austerity has destroyed lives and infrastructure.
The bankers planned to sell all Greek assets: harbours, railways, lands;
and you can envisage yourself who would buy it. The negotiations between
the EU, IMF and Greece were dishonest, explains Ashoka
Mody in widely read and technical essay. That’s why the
Greeks elected the far-left party Syriza and its far-right counterpart
INIL to break the rules of the rigged game.
Greece is a small country and it could not take on the whole EU banking
and political establishment on its own. Fortunately, there is a country
able and willing to help. That is its sister in faith, Russia. Greece
for Russia is like Italy for Catholics, like England for the US: the
source of culture and religion. The Greek priests had brought their
faith to what was to become Russia. Greece and Russia share the same
Byzantine legacy. Arnold Toynbee, the British scholar of history, spoke
of few European civilisations, some abortive (Far Western and
Scandinavian), and two fully developed: Western European, based on the
Church of Rome, and Orthodox Christian, based on the Church of
Constantinople. Russia and Greece belong to the last one.
The EU is a reincarnation of the Roman Empire and that of Charlemagne.
It is at home in France and Germany, but completely foreign for Swedes
and Greeks, for Letts and Bulgars, for Ukrainians and Russians. It has
over-extended itself and brought huge calamities upon its people and on
Mind you, this is not the first time the people of the West have
colonised the Orthodox Christian East: in 1204, they smashed the
Byzantine Empire and established their kingdoms and duchies, eventually
erased by the Turks. After Greece was restored in 1821, it went back
under the Western tutelage, and remained there. In 1945, the Greeks made
a heroic effort to liaise with Russia, but Churchill employed the
defeated German troops to smash the Greek independence movement and
installed his agents in Athens. Soviet Russia did not object much, as
under the Yalta agreement Greece was going to the West, while Poland was
going to the East. Now the West has both Poland and Greece. The Greeks
were frog-marched to NATO and to EU, and they would have remained
forever captive but for the bankers’ greed.
Russia is the only part of the Byzantine world that remained independent
and adhered to its faith. Russia is a natural partner for Greece and its
Balkan neighbours. Now Russia can help Greece: by buying its wine,
cheese and olives that do not sell well in the West, by sending pilgrims
to venerate shrines under its cruel blue sky, by encouraging its
industries, by giving its youth a meaning of life beyond caring for
German tourists. And the Greeks are fond of Russians, so their
sympathies are mutual.
The Syriza party, and its partner ANEL were famous (some would correct
it to ‘notorious’) for their pro-Russian sympathies. However, since they
were elected, they began a game of playing Brussels against Moscow, like
a young tease who encourages two suitors to keep both in her thrall. The
Greek expert and London Lawyer Alexander Merkoulis listed the
Russian attempts to help Greece. They offered five billion euros to
build a gas pipeline to Greece, and Greece would be able to sell gas to
Europe. Miller of Gazprom went to Athens with prepared documents, and
came back empty-handed.
Tsipras promised to come to Moscow for the May 9 celebrations, and
failed to show up at the last moment. He agreed to extend anti-Russia
sanctions while sitting at the St Petersburg forum. This undermined
Russian trust. “The Russians must be getting increasingly fed up with
someone who repeatedly takes them to the Church door – and then at the
last moment runs away”, said Merkoulis.
It appears that the Ukraine story has repeated itself. Russia offered
huge credits to the Ukraine in 2013, it could buy its industrial output,
invigorate its industry and agriculture, but the then President
Yanukovych did not dare. He ended in exile, his country ruined; it will
take them 20 years to regain the positions they had in 2013, say the EU
Greece is not likely to go for a civil war: they had it in 1945, but the
old wounds may reopen. The most pro-Russian area of 1945 insurgency –
the Isle of Crete – heavily (75%) voted against the EU in the recent
referendum. The Syriza government will try to renegotiate with the IMF
and the EU by bluffing them with the Russian alternative. Even if they
will get relief, their economy is not likely to come back to normal.
The problem is not Greece, the problem is the EU. This body has a triple
purpose. It is (1) a union of bankers against people, (2) a harness with
which the US can drive colonised Europe, and (3) a tool for
de-industrialisation and de-education of this most developed continent.
Under the EU, masses of beggars from Romania and African refugees
descend on the North. Under the EU, once-industrial Latvia and Hungary
became basket-cases, their high tech moved elsewhere. Under the EU, the
social welfare system has been dismantled, while sexual education of
children and gender games have gone into a high drive. That is why
nations – from Sweden to Italy, from England to Spain – call to break up
Greece would be better off out of the EU. Everybody would.
Distressingly, its Minister of Finance Yanis Varoufakis, a stubborn
negotiator, a son of 1945 fighter, who could lead his country to
freedom, has been dismissed following the referendum. Alexis Tsipras
will try to negotiate himself, and he is a smooth operator, say the
There is just one problem, that of guts and their lack thereof. Too many
leaders hesitate and contemplate instead of acting. We mentioned
Yanukovych, but this is a long list of names, beginning with Allende, a
man of peace killed in a coup. The leaders that stood up to the vampire
squids – from Nasser to Putin – were branded “a new Hitler”, but
actually managed better. The US always dares: to conquer Panama and
Granada, to attack Afghanistan and Iraq, and this daring is a secret of
Still it is too early for despair. The referendum was a victory, and a
victory can do wonders even to wet and wobbling leaders. It would be a
shame to cast the pearl of Greece to the banker swine.
First published in The
Israel Shamir can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org