Is Athens provoking a "Graccident"?
Despite the agreement with its creditors, the Greek government has questioned the repayment of government bonds and once again tabled the option of a debt cut. Athens' irresponsible behaviour will have it thrown out of the Eurozone, some commentators fear. Others believe Greece is simply a good negotiator.
Be careful to avoid a "Graccident"
Europe must avoid developments that could lead to a "Graccident" - Greece exiting the Eurozone for unpredictable political reasons -, journalist Vasilis Stefanikidis warns in the online edition of the liberal weekly newspaper Proto Thema: "If the government can't convince the creditors' representatives that it is able to implement reforms that immediately bring money into its coffers, I fear we could well be heading for a 'Graccident'. ... The political decisions that have been taken are good and legitimate, but we can safely assume that the creditors have already run out of patience. They're tired of hearing theories and seeing draft laws that don't replenish the treasury but even cost money instead."
More courageous than Madrid and Lisbon
Instead of complaining about the Greek government Portugal and Spain should copy Athens's successful negotiation tactics, the left-wing web portal eldiario.es admonishes: "It's clear that the new Greek government hasn't achieved what it had set out to do. But it's also clear that it has secured better conditions to pursue a policy that is at least a little less unjust. This may seem trivial to our insatiable masters and their politicians but for many people it means nothing other than food on the table, a roof over their heads, health insurance and education. It's as simple as that. Why don't the Portuguese and Spanish governments follow this example even though many of their citizens are suffering? Why are they instead torpedoing the Greeks' negotiations ?"
Athens unaware of its self-imposed isolation
Greece is doing its best to offend the Euro Group countries, the left-liberal Süddeutsche Zeitung writes and sees a Grexit as more likely for political than for economic reasons: "The Euro Group is more united than ever against the new Greek government, which refuses to see its self-imposed isolation. The outburst against the southern member states has shown that Greece's exit from the euro is no longer a matter of economic strategy - the danger of contagion is small, the collateral damage is probably controllable. Greece's future will be decided on the political level. ... One simple equation holds here: Athens can no longer expect help if the political price is unbearably high for the other euro states. If Greece strains the good will of its EU partner governments to such an extent that it only strengthens parties like Front National or Alternative for Germany or the Podemos movement the friendship will come to an end."
Greece comes across as entirely unreliable
In the negotiations on further financial aid the Greek government has shown little diplomatic skill, the liberal-conservative daily Jyllands-Posten writes, pointing out that like other countries Greece too must work seriously on its reforms: "To be fair it must be said that it's not just Prime Minister Tsipras and Finance Minister Varoufakis who are pursuing irresponsible policies in Greece. Both the social democratic and the conservative governments that came before them are guilty of scandalous management of the country. ... But Tsipras and Varoufakis are continuing this madness. Greece is not the only EU member in difficulties. But on the whole all the other countries - from Ireland to Portugal to the Baltic states - have focussed on getting their affairs in order, effectively and with dignity. Athens has failed to do so, although that's the least that could have been expected of it in polite society."