Revista de prensa | 03/07/2015



IMF: Athens needs a third bailout


The IMF estimates in its latest analysis that Athens will need around 52 billion euros in new loans until 2018, as well as debt relief. Instead of talking about bailouts the Euro Group should finally talk about a debt write-down and Eurobonds, also commentators warn, pointing to how Argentina once solved its debt crisis.

De Morgen - Bélgica

No improvement without debt relief

The debt relief taboo must finally be broken, the centre-left daily De Morgen demands: "This is not the first time the IMF has argued in favour of debt relief as the key component of a solution. But it is highly remarkable that the international creditor has come now of all times with a recommendation that deviates gingerly from [IMF chief] Lagarde's unbending stance and presents something that until now had been a major political taboo as an absolute necessity. Up to now the IMF's calls for debt relief have always met with opposition from the European governments. In its latest analysis the IMF ignores this. The situation is now so bad, the economists say, that the one-sided method of 'sink or swim' won't work any more, even if the political leaders continue to support it." (03/07/2015)

The Economist - Gran Bretaña

Eurobonds instead of bailout programmes

The euro will only remain viable after the Greek crisis if member states share the burdens of risk and responsibility, the liberal business weekly The Economist warns: "To protect against downturns, euro-zone members must create automatic mechanisms, such as collective unemployment insurance, that channel extra funds to countries in recession. Instead of bail-outs, the single-currency area needs more joint pooling of risk and responsibility - some form of 'Eurobonds' or jointly guaranteed sovereign debt - governed by fiscal rules more binding than today's. ... The moral of Greece's disaster is that Europeans must face up to the euro's contradictions now - or suffer the consequences in more ruinous circumstances." (02/07/2015)

El Huffington Post - España

There is life after default

Greece is in a similarly difficult situation to the one Argentina faced in 2001, economists Joseph Stiglitz and Martin Guzman point out in the centre-left web paper El Huffington Post: "In both countries, recessions turned into depressions as a consequence of austerity policies - making the debt even more unsustainable. In both cases, the policies were demanded as a condition for assistance. Both countries had rigid currency arrangements that gave them no possibility for running expansionary monetary policies during the recession. In both countries, the IMF got it wrong, providing alarmingly flawed forecasts of the consequences of the imposed policies. Unemployment and poverty soared, and GDP plummeted. ... Defaults are difficult. But even more so is austerity. The good news for Greece is that, as Argentina showed, there may be life after debt and default." (03/07/2015)

The New York Times - EE.UU.

Global perspectives: Tsipras's campaign against austerity has failed

The Greek government's negotiating style has alienated all the Eurozone countries, the liberal daily The New York Times observes: "Alexis Tsipras, the Greek prime minister, has spent the last six months, since his left-wing Syriza party came to power, trying to shift the entire political framework of his country's bailout negotiations. That effort has failed. ... The Greek government was surely hoping that by walking away and calling a referendum, the creditors would rethink their intransigence, fearful of the economic and geopolitical consequences of letting Greece leave the eurozone. If anything, it pushed Germany and France, as well as Spain and Italy, closer together, full of exasperation with the Greeks' negotiating style and aggressive demands." (02/07/2015)

Wiener Zeitung - Austria

Greek government sullying left ideals

Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis are betraying the ideals of the left, journalist Werner Stanzl criticises in the liberal daily Wiener Zeitung: "The editors of almost all German-language newspapers, radios and television stations have rushed to present the empty verbiage of Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and his Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis as leftist thought - or even as its elixir. Nothing does more to disqualify this view than the in part intentional, in part naive lack of criticism with which the half-truths and falsehoods from Athens have been cast as part of a pan-European socialist programme. .. Leftist politicians would never have taken risks with such catastrophic repercussions for the entire populace. Syriza's gamble is a display of contempt for human lives, and has completely besmirched the ideas of the left." (03/07/2015)

Proto Thema - Grecia

Angela Merkel coordinating a putsch

The European Commission and European politicians have warned the Greeks in recent days not to vote against austerity in Sunday's referendum. This provokes harsh criticism from the liberal anti-government weekly Proto Thema: "What we are now seeing is a post-modern putsch coordinated by Berlin and aimed at toppling the left-leaning government. [German Chancellor] Merkel said yesterday that the current differences of opinion were of a political nature and not about money, 400 million euros, or any other sum. It was for this reason that [german finance minister] Schäuble rejected the Greek government's last proposal for compromise. It's clear that what Berlin wants is not an agreement but the fall of the government and the unconditional surrender of the country. If this government can be accused of one thing it's that it has allowed itself to be dragged into a war that it wanted to avoid." (03/07/2015)


Sözcü - Turquía

Far-right MHP cozying up to AKP

The former Turkish defence minister İsmet Yılmaz was elected as the new speaker of the country's Grand National Assembly on Wednesday. The far-right MHP gave the AKP candidate its support in the fourth round of voting. The anti-government daily Sözcü is bitterly disappointed: "With their tricks in this vote, MHP leader Devlet Bahçeli and his party have told their million voters a huge lie. ... And only recently at their electoral rallies they were still yelling that they would settle their accounts with this 'corrupt, bribing, government that cuts deals with a terrorist organisation. ... But instead of settling accounts, they handed the position of parliamentary speaker to the AKP on the very first day! .. Have no doubts that they will soon form a new government with the AKP and once again behave like a tame cat and loyal slaves of the governing party." (03/07/2015)

Gazeta Wyborcza - Polonia

PiS candidate slips up on foreign policy

In view of the Greek crisis Beata Szydło, the national-conservative PiS party's candidate for the office of Polish prime minister, has called for Poland to abandon plans to join the Eurozone. Such unnecessary provocation shows her incompetence, the left-liberal daily Gazeta Wyborcza comments: "If Mrs. Szydło meant that seriously, then she lacks all competence to hold this office. ... By signing the EU treaties we committed ourselves to introducing the single currency, even if we haven't yet named a date. If the government now announced that Poland will never enter the Eurozone it would stir up a completely unnecessary conflict with the EU and our trading partner Germany, for whom the euro is very important. ... If this is what the foreign policy of a future PiS government would look like, we'd be in for quite a fandango." (03/07/2015)

L'Hebdo - Suiza

Swiss democracy losing legitimacy

Switzerland's direct democracy is in crisis due to low voter turnout, warns European studies professor Gilbert Casasus in his blog for the weekly magazine L'Hebdo: "A minority of Swiss citizens decide over their country's political future. And not even 50 percent of those entitled to vote take part in the elections for the National Council. That is far fewer than in parliamentary or presidential elections in other European states. ... Swiss politics faces a double crisis which it is deliberately covering up. The first crisis is that of political legitimacy. Even if the voting results are perfectly legal, they rarely represent the will of the majority of Swiss citizens. The second crisis is of a civic nature. If less than one in two Swiss citizens are going out to vote, it means that they are failing to make full use of the civil rights the state has granted them." (02/07/2015)


Avvenire - Italia

Fulvio Scaglione on the fear of the Islamist Hydra

In the aftermath of the series of attacks on the Sinai Peninsula, Egypt has toughened its anti-terrorism laws to counter the IS. The fight against this terrorist group must begin in Syria and Iraq, writes journalist Fulvio Scaglione in the Catholic daily Avvenire: "The Sinai Peninsula shares borders with Israel, Jordan and, on the Gulf of Aqaba, with Saudi Arabia. That is reason enough to fear an earthquake. Egypt, which has yet to solve its own problem with Islamism, can hardly accept the IS setting up a base on Egyptian territory. Israel for the first time feels really threatened by the jihadists. Jordan, which threatens to collapse under the burden of refugees from Syria, fears an attack from behind. … And Saudi Arabia, which is already caught up in a war in Yemen, is eyeing the deeds of the evil genie it itself helped out of the bottle with distrust. All these states face one and the same problem: to stop the Islamist Hydra they must cut off its head - that means they must fight it in Syria and Iraq. But there are hardly any countries willing to do so. They are less numerous and also less resolute than those who fear Iran and the Shiites more than the IS." (03/07/2015)


Delo - Eslovenia

Slovenians shouldn't pay for German banks

A Greek state bankruptcy could cost Slovenian taxpayers up to 1.6 billion euros, the centre-left daily Delo writes angrily and calls for the Western European banks to pay for their own bad decisions: "It would be far fairer for the citizens of the Eurozone if the founding fathers of the euro, for instance the Germans or the French, forced their banks that have lost money on Greece to pay for their own recapitalisation. Certain Slovenian banks also made bad investment decisions here in Slovenia or in other Balkan countries. But in Slovenia we paid for the recapitalisation of our banks right down to the last cent. We have also, by providing guarantees and loans for Greece, done our bit to improve the balance sheets of a few Western, mostly private banks. That too, is the reality of the single currency, in which the rules are determined above all by the egoism and interests of the big players." (03/07/2015)

SOCIEDAD - Alemania

Euthanasia debate a great moment in politics

The German Bundestag debated a new law on euthanasia on Thursday. Four draft laws presented by groups that cross party lines were up for discussion. The public service news website praises this as a constructive debate: "There is no wrong or right, no black or white, on the subject of euthanasia. It's the in-between tones that count. And because it was precisely those tones that could be heard in the Bundestag today we can safely hail this as a great moment in political Berlin - that circus that so often pursues rigid rules. Today they didn't matter - and that's how it should be. Because the debate about euthanasia is above all about the following questions: What kind of society do we want to live in? How self-determined, and therefore also independent? There can be no simple answers that can be squeezed into the constraints of parliamentary group interests here. For that reason this was a dignified, important debate. More of this, please! Because the parliament has shown today what it is capable of: high-level, realistic debate and the struggle for positions and solutions." (02/07/2015)

De Telegraaf - Holanda

Police chokehold should be banned

A man from the Caribbean island of Aruba who died on Saturday following his violent arrest in The Hague died of suffocation, according to the latest media reports. Five police officers had used a chokehold to restrain him during arrest. The right-wing daily De Telegraaf calls for chokeholds to be banned: "At the request of our newspaper a forensic pathologist examined the shocking images of the fatal arrest and drew shocking conclusions. He talks of disproportional use of force by the police and even accuses the five police officers of murder because they failed to stop their aggressive tactics even after realising that the Aruban was in distress. This raises the question of why the harsh method of chokeholds is still allowed here while in other countries it is banned. … In view of the high risk of it causing permanent damage or death, the chokehold must be banned." (03/07/2015)


Adevărul - Rumania

Tabloids defame Romania's women politicians

The Bucharest tabloid Ciao has alleged that Alina Gorghiu, co-chair of the strongest liberal opposition force in Romania, had an abortion for career reasons. Such assaults on the private sphere of female politicians are becoming increasingly brazen, the daily Adevărul writes indignantly: "Gender stereotypes, misogynous attacks and dirty slander are nothing new. But what is new is the way the journalist has condemned Gorghiu from the pulpit of moral sovereignty for having an abortion solely to climb a rung or two higher on the otherwise so rusty political career ladder in Romania. We naively assumed that such impertinent meddling in a woman's decisions regarding her body had disappeared together with the ban on abortion. ... These twaddle-mongers, however, show us that they can invade the privacy of a politician without having anything to fear." (03/07/2015)

La Montagne - Francia

France's TV distances itself from spirit of 68

The French TV station Canal Plus may soon take its cult programme Les Guignols de l'Info (the news puppets), which pokes fun at politicians using puppets, off the air, according to media reports. That would be the end of a beacon of freedom, the regional daily La Montagne sighs: "Not just because it's a symbol of impertinence in the satirical tradition going back to the cabaretists of the 19th century, but also because it stands for the grand liberalisation of the audiovisual media in our country in the 1980s. ... With their joyful political leg-pulling, the puppets often made the news understandable in many respects, and even turned some French politicians into popular figures. Canal Plus was created in a very liberated society, ten years after the 1968 movement. Today French society has taken refuge in morals, prejudices and fears. So it's no surprise that Canal Plus, the station that took the most liberties, is cowering like a scared animal." (03/07/2015)

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