Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.

For The Record  

FTR #855: Greek Tragedy, Part 3

Dave Emory’s entire life­time of work is avail­able on a flash drive that can be obtained here. The new drive is a 32-gigabyte drive that is current as of the programs and articles posted by late spring of 2015. The new drive (available for a tax-deductible contribution of $65.00 or more) contains FTR #850.  (The previous flash drive was current through the end of May of 2012 and contained FTR #748.)

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This program was recorded in one, 60-minute segment.

Introduction: Beginning with analysis from German Foreign Policy, we note the reaction in Europe and elsewhere to German economic dictatorship and hegemony as seen in practice against Greece in the recent referendum. Of particular significance is the CV of German finance minister Wolfgang Schauble. Among the figures implementing the institution of German economic domination of Europe, Schauble employed Theodor Veiter, a Third Reich veteran and specialist in cross-border subversion.

“. . . In the 1990s, Wolfgang Schäuble, who, today, administers the austerity dictate as German Minister of Finances, had also played a role in creating the German power base, which has permitted Berlin’s consistent clean sweep. In the early 1980s, as Chair of the Association of European Border Regions (AEBR), Schäuble had organized the first economic initiatives [and not just] toward France. Theodor Veiter [6] a former Nazi specialist for border subversion was one of Schäuble’s advisors as chair of the AEBR. . . .”

The information here might be weighed against the material presented in FTR #s 99802.

A telling, accurate assessment of the nature of the Brussels Settlement was presented in an article in the Huffington Post.

” . . . . And on Sun­day night, it marched into Athens with an offer to Greece that would end the idea that cap­i­tal­ism and democ­racy can sur­vive together there. [Italics mine–D.E.] Reads the offer, pro­vided by a source close to the talks, from the Euro­pean finan­cial elite, which call them­selves the insti­tu­tions: “The [Greek] gov­ern­ment needs to con­sult and agree with the insti­tu­tions on all draft leg­is­la­tion in rel­e­vant areas with ade­quate time before sub­mit­ting it for pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion or to Par­lia­ment.” It would be a gov­ern­ment in name only. Not only would the Greek peo­ple be forced to accept the kind of deal they rejected over­whelm­ingly at the polls just a week ear­lier, but they’d be blocked from imple­ment­ing any future poli­cies Ger­many dis­ap­proved of. . . .”

Numerous observers feel that the German goal is actually the humiliation/subjugation/destruction of Greece.

Austerity advocates inspecting Greek assets

” . . . . . The prob­lem is that Greece’s econ­omy is in so much worse shape now than it was even a few weeks ago that the tax hikes and spend­ing cuts, which would have pro­duced a 1 per­cent bud­get sur­plus before, won’t any­more. That’s what hap­pens , after all, when the Euro­pean Cen­tral Bank pulls enough of the plug on your banks that they have to close their doors for now to avoid hav­ing to close their doors for good. Busi­nesses can’t get the credit they need to, well, stay in busi­ness, and will then default on the banks that are about to go out of busi­ness them­selves. The entire econ­omy, in other words, shuts down. . . .”

Paul Krugman’s observations about the “coup” have been widely quoted“. . . . This goes beyond harsh into pure vin­dic­tive­ness, com­plete destruc­tion of national sov­er­eignty, and no hope of relief. It is, pre­sum­ably, meant to be an offer Greece can’t accept; but even so, it’s a grotesque betrayal of every­thing the Euro­pean project was sup­posed to stand for,” he said.”

Over the years, we have been privileged to feature Lucy Komisar as an expert commentator on matters economic, “offshore” business matters, in particular. At a recent address by German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schauble (given to the Council on Foreign Relations) Lucy braced the veteran politician over Germany’s hypocrisy concerning Greek debt.Schauble’s equivocation on the issue did not shake Lucy’s efforts to pin him down. In the article below, do note the observations of Albrecht Ritschl, professor of economic history at the London School of Economics.
” . . . .  Ritschl said, “If we accept that Germany’s national product is somewhere to the tune of over 2 trillion euros, which is beyond 2.5 trillion U.S. dollars, we would be talking about a default and debt forgiveness of somewhere in the range of 10 trillion dollars. I would tend to think that this is probably unrivaled in 20th century history. . . . .”

Some background information to flesh out listeners’ understanding of these issues can be found in an introduction to the anti-fascist books available for download on this website. Other posts and programs have dealt with the issue of Germany, the EMU, Greece’s debt and the Third Reich’s economic exploitation of “the cradle of democracy.” The political, historical and economic dynamics underlying Greece’s perils exemplify why we so often cite the primary importance of the Bormann capital network. Be sure to click on the link below to hear Lucy’s question at the CFR talk, as well as links to an important interview with Albrecht Ritschl.

Much of the program highlights the continuity of German, political, military and economic policy through the late nineteenth century, the two World Wars and the “Post-wars” that followed them.

Program Highlights Include: 

  • The plan formulated by Friedrich List in the nineteenth century, projecting German european and world hegemony through a German-dominated European economic union.
  • The continuity of that plan through German prosecution of the First World War.
  • The development of that plan on the eve of World War II.
  • The evolution of the plan through World War II.
  • The Third Reich’s stated goal of a German-dominated European union as detailed in a captured document.
  • The troika’s imposition of a fascist party as part of a provisional government installed in Greece–this without the permission of the Greek people.
  • Discussion of the difference in German corporations’ approach to cartel agreements and those of their competitors and cartel partners in foreign countries.

1. Beginning with analysis from German Foreign Policy, we note the reaction in Europe and elsewhere to German economic dictatorship and hegemony as seen in practice against Greece in the recent referendum. Of particular significance is the CV of German finance minister Wolfgang Schauble. Among the figures implementing the institution of German economic domination of Europe, Schauble employed Theodor Veiter, a Third Reich veteran and specialist in cross-border subversion.

“The Brussels Agreement”; german-foreign-policy.com; 7/15/2014.

In several western and southern European countries, the agreement on Greece reached in Brussels signals a looming collapse of the continental post-war order and Germany’s revival as an ostentatious dictatorial power. Whereas social-democratic observers do not exclude an attenuation of the contradictions, southern European conservative media are among those who speak of a revival of German hegemonic ambitions, which had largely determined or triggered the First and Second World Wars. The consequences of the French-Italian submission during negotiations in Brussels are generating those fears, because Paris had not succeeded to and Rome had not even seriously attempted to thwart the German dictates of sovereignty over Greece. Both, Italy and France are aware of the dangers of becoming the next victim of German financial dictatorship. They are competing for admission in a northern European core Europe, whose membership will be decided by Berlin, in the case of a possible collapse of the European Union. Current events are directly linked to German foreign policy endeavors in the 1990s and the territorial expansion of Germany’s economic basis through the so-called reunification.

The Burden of History

Commentators of diverse political orientations speak of a revival of German hegemonic ambitions. In Italy, for example, following the negotiations in Brussels, the liberal “La Repubblica” carried the headline “Greece has its back to the wall” and noted, “the Eurogroup” is “in the hands of German hawks.” Athens is confronted with “a series of dictates, one harsher then the other.” “Hawks are triumphantly circling in the European skies,” the article continues, “and impose an impossible ultimatum on Tsipras similar to the one Austria imposed on the Serbs, which triggered the First World War.”[1] “The end of innocence has been reached, because everyone [in the EU, gfp.com] knows, without a doubt, who the real ring master is,” the Italian conservative “Il Messaggero” wrote. “The real ring master is Germany.” The paper continues, “Sedan is returning, when Germany trampled on France in 1870” – and later – “did not follow Bismarck’s advice,” not to make enemies, both in the West and the East at the same time. In fact, Germany made “enemies everywhere” after WW I, “Il Messaggero” recalled – except perhaps in northern Europe’s “vassal states” or in the 1930s, temporarily Poland, “which, because of its own painful history, thought it could not act otherwise than direct its hatred toward the Russians.” The commentator concluded, “the burden of history has returned and seems insurmountable.”[2]

The Same Arrogance

Warnings, based on historical experience, can also be heard in France. “Germany wants to smash Greece by forcing it, under threat of the Grexit, to accept a deadly plan of total submission,” Jean-Luc Mélenchon, the head of the Parti de Gauche, twittered on the weekend.[3] On TV, he had already expressed himself in greater detail. “For the third time in history, the stubbornness of a German government is in the process of destroying Europe.” Of course, one cannot insinuate that today’s Federal Republic of Germany is ideologically on the same level as its predecessor regime. Still Berlin displays “the same arrogance, the same blindness” as in earlier phases of its historical reign.[4]

Aggressive Financial Policy

However, the fact that Berlin had not begun only in 2015 to threaten with a further radicalization of its aggressive economic and financial policy has remained largely in the background. In fact, current events are directly linked to German foreign policy endeavors in the 1990s and the territorial expansion of Germany’s economic basis through the so-called reunification. According to a popular myth, the latter was bought by German Chancellor at the time, Helmut Kohl’s consent to the introduction of the uniform EU currency – the Euro. In fact, Bonn had only consented to the common currency under the condition – as a contemporary observer of the event remembers – that “the rules governing the monetary union and the European central banking system be primarily oriented on the model of German rules and the German Federal Bank.” “The Euro speaks German,” declared the then German Minister of Finances, Theo Waigel in 1998.[5] Thanks to the Euro, with its specifically German patent, the Federal Republic of Germany has been able to take full advantage of its economic strength in relationship to the other countries in the Eurozone and drive many of them into a – debt inducing – excessive foreign trade deficit. In 2014, approximately 34.5 billion Euros flowed from France to Germany, and Greece was still transferring more than 3.2 billion Euros. The German austerity dictate, which ultimately insures the flow of currency into the Federal Republic of Germany, are a result of the German patent on the Euro, imposed back in the 1990s.

Core Europe

In the 1990s, Wolfgang Schäuble, who, today, administers the austerity dictate as German Minister of Finances, had also played a role in creating the German power base, which has permitted Berlin’s consistent clean sweep. In the early 1980s, as Chair of the Association of European Border Regions (AEBR), Schäuble had organized the first economic initiatives [and not just] toward France. Theodor Veiter [6] a former Nazi specialist for border subversion was one of Schäuble’s advisors as chair of the AEBR. On the reinforced basis following the collapse of Europe’s socialist system and the annexation of the German Democratic Republic, Schäuble assisted in imposing the EU’s eastward expansion.[7] This initiative had placed Germany at a clear advantage over France, whose traditional zone of influence, around the Mediterranean Basin and in Francophonie Africa cannot be comparably affiliated with the EU. It was also Schäuble, who, in the mid 1990s, developed the “core Europe” concept, meaning “a strong focal point” within the EU centered on Germany, which will form a tight-knit “core,” that will not only hold the EU together, but actually should determine EU policy.[8] Today, part of that core is represented by the Eurogroup, which Sunday reached very sweeping decisions, on no less than the continuation of the EU in its current form. Nine EU member nations – including Great Britain, Sweden, and Poland – could not participate in these decisions. The Eurogroup core is one of the formats allowing Berlin to place its seal on this confederation.

Nothing Accomplished

 The hopes of being able to have an impact on “Europe’s” history, by being a member of the EU’s “core,” should there be a breach with individual or a group of Eurozone members – for example, Greece or several other southern European countries – has characterized the policies of France and Italy to the present. Both countries are economically increasingly losing ground to Germany and must – particularly in the case of Italy – fear being drawn further downward under austerity conditions – similar to those in Greece. Therefore, France’s President François Hollande had announced several times previous to the Eurogroup Summit, last Sunday, that he would seek mitigations and a partial debt remission for Greece. Italy’s Prime Minister Matteo Renzi had declared, “I say to Germany, enough is enough.”[9] Ultimately, both had to submit to German pressure. They accomplished nothing. It is doubtful that their caving in to Berlin will shore up their long-term positions in light of the economic developments of their countries. This would also not be new in history. Hopes of avoiding German aggression had also been the motivation behind the September 1938 Munich Agreement, when Great Britain, France, and Italy, seeking to appease the German Reich, acquiesced to the latter’s occupation of the “Sudeten territories.”[10] It did not take long before they too were victims of German aggression.

Without or Against the USA

“Il Messaggero” commented on Italy’s perspective of the results. “Today, the loss of innocence was accompanied by [Italy’s] horrific silence in the international arena.” On the other hand, Germany “believes it can assume the reign over Europe.” In reference to Berlin’s global political perspective, the commentator of “Messaggero” noted that this takes place, “without or against the USA.”[11]

Please read also The First Defeat and Austerity or Democracy.

[1] Andrea Bonanni in: La Repubblica 13.07.2015.
[2] Giulio Sapelli in: Il Messaggero 13.07.2015.
[3] Grèce: quand l’Allemagne de Merkel est comparée à celle d’Hitler. www.lefigaro.fr 13.07.2015.
[4] Mélenchon: “Pour la 3e fois, un gouvernement allemend est en train de détruire l’Europe”. bfmbusiness.bfmtv.com 12.07.2015.
[5] Beat Gygi: Der Euro spricht neudeutsch. www.nzz.ch 28.09.2013.
[6] See Hintergrundbericht: Arbeitsgemeinschaft Europäischer Grenzregionen (AGEG).
[7] In a paper published on the 55th Anniversary of the German invasion of Poland, Wolfgang Schäuble justified as follows his demand that German concepts be applied: “Without such a further development of (west) European integration, Germany could be called upon or be tempted, out of its own security imperatives, to undertake alone the stabilization of eastern Europe and do it in the traditional way.” Wolfgang Schäuble, Karl Lamers: Überlegungen zur europäischen Politik. 01.09.1994.
[8] Wolfgang Schäuble, Karl Lamers: Überlegungen zur europäischen Politik. 01.09.1994.
[9] See Die Politik des Staatsstreichs.
[10] In reaction to the Munich Agreement, the Czechoslovak Foreign Minister at the time, Kamil Krofta, declared: “On behalf of the President of the Republic, as well as my government, I declare that we submit to the conditions of the Munich Agreement which has come into being without Czechoslovakia and against her […] I do not want to criticize, but this is a catastrophe, we do not deserve. We submit and will endeavour to secure our people a peaceful life. I do not know if the decisions taken in Munich will be advantageous to your countries. Besides, we are not the last ones, others will be affected after us.” Quoted from Boris Celovsky: Das Münchener Abkommen 1938. Stuttgart 1958
[11] Giulio Sapelli in: Il Messaggero 13.07.2015.

2.  Say hello to the new meme that sym­bol­izes the state of affairs for one of the most impor­tant demo­c­ra­tic projects in his­tory: #Thi­sIsACoup:

“German-Led Eurogroup Launch­ing Coup Against Greek Government” by Ryan Grim ;The Huff­in­g­ton Post; 7/12/2015.

After the fall of the Berlin Wall and the col­lapse of the Soviet Union, Fran­cis Fukuyama famously declared an end to his­tory. Things, of course, would con­tinue to hap­pen, he said, but the clash of rival ide­olo­gies was over with the “unabashed vic­tory of eco­nomic and polit­i­cal liberalism.”

It was 1992, and it was a time to cel­e­brate. “What we may be wit­ness­ing is not just the end of the Cold War, or the pass­ing of a par­tic­u­lar period of post­war his­tory, but the end of his­tory as such: that is, the end point of mankind’s ide­o­log­i­cal evo­lu­tion and the uni­ver­sal­iza­tion of West­ern lib­eral democ­racy as the final form of human gov­ern­ment,” he wrote in his land­mark essay-turned-book.

With Ger­many and its Euro­zone squeez­ing the life out of Greece on Sun­day night — and the hash­tag #Thi­sIsACoup trend­ing — it became clearer than ever that only one half of that bar­gain — the eco­nom­ics — remained alive.

Within just a few years of Fukuyama’s pro­nounce­ment, pro­test­ers in West­ern nations, and gov­ern­ments and peo­ple in the global South, began sug­gest­ing that the new demo­c­ra­tic sys­tem was, in the end, per­haps not so demo­c­ra­tic. The Inter­na­tional Mon­e­tary Fund and other global cred­i­tors began writ­ing laws, mostly for Third World coun­tries, enforc­ing what they called “struc­tural adjust­ment” — which was blood­less bureau­cratic lan­guage refer­ring to the pil­lag­ing of a nation’s assets and resources, cou­pled with the gut­ting of its social ser­vices, pen­sions and other advances that came in the 20th Cen­tury. The first major protest to cap­ture global atten­tion was in Seat­tle, Wash­ing­ton, in 1999, at a World Trade Orga­ni­za­tion meet­ing. The move­ment spread around the globe, with protests hit­ting cap­i­tal after cap­i­tal, wher­ever eco­nomic lead­ers gath­ered, until the attacks of Sep­tem­ber 11, 2001. A planned protest in Wash­ing­ton, D.C., against the IMF and World Bank was sup­planted by a peace march.

The world’s rich nations assumed that what insti­tu­tions like the IMF did in the South wouldn’t hit the North. Cap­i­tal, how­ever, marched on. And on Sun­day night, it marched into Athens with an offer to Greece that would end the idea that cap­i­tal­ism and democ­racy can sur­vive together there. Reads the offer, pro­vided by a source close to the talks, from the Euro­pean finan­cial elite, which call them­selves the insti­tu­tions: “The [Greek] gov­ern­ment needs to con­sult and agree with the insti­tu­tions on all draft leg­is­la­tion in rel­e­vant areas with ade­quate time before sub­mit­ting it for pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion or to Par­lia­ment.” It would be a gov­ern­ment in name only. Not only would the Greek peo­ple be forced to accept the kind of deal they rejected over­whelm­ingly at the polls just a week ear­lier, but they’d be blocked from imple­ment­ing any future poli­cies Ger­many dis­ap­proved of.

“The tri­umph of the West, of the West­ern idea, is evi­dent first of all in the total exhaus­tion of viable sys­tem­atic alter­na­tives to West­ern lib­er­al­ism,” Fukuyama wrote. But, instead, the absence of a viable alter­na­tive embold­ened cap­i­tal: with the threat of social­ism gone, there is less need for either half of what’s known in Europe as social democ­racy. In a pre­vi­ous inter­view with Huff­Post, French econ­o­mist Thomas Piketty high­lighted the inter­ac­tion. “The exis­tence of a counter model was one of the rea­sons that a num­ber of reforms or poli­cies were accepted,” he said argu­ing that peo­ple in cap­i­tal­ist coun­tries fared bet­ter thanks to the threat of com­mu­nism. “In France, it’s very strik­ing to see that in 1920, the polit­i­cal majori­ties adopted steeply pro­gres­sive tax­a­tion. Exactly the same peo­ple refused the income tax in 1914 with a 2 per­cent tax rate. And in between, the Bol­she­vik rev­o­lu­tion made them feel, after all, that pro­gres­sive tax­a­tion is not so dan­ger­ous as revolution.”

Dur­ing nego­ti­a­tions over the future of Greece, the Greek Syriza gov­ern­ment repeat­edly offered such pro­gres­sive tax­a­tion as a way of achiev­ing some of the bud­get sur­pluses the insti­tu­tions were demand­ing. The offer was rejected, how­ever, with the insti­tu­tions argu­ing that higher taxes on the rich might slow growth. With no fear of rev­o­lu­tion, the inter­est in pro­gres­sive tax­a­tion is gone.

Paul Krug­man, under the head­line “Killing the Euro­pean Project,” put the blame squarely on Ger­many::

The trend­ing hash­tag Thi­sIsACoup is exactly right. This goes beyond harsh into pure vin­dic­tive­ness, com­plete destruc­tion of national sov­er­eignty, and no hope of relief. It is, pre­sum­ably, meant to be an offer Greece can’t accept; but even so, it’s a grotesque betrayal of every­thing the Euro­pean project was sup­posed to stand for.

Rena Dourou, a mem­ber of Syriza, wrote for Huff­Post Greecet hat the next few days and hours “will either meet the goals of its founders — Democ­racy and Sol­i­dar­ity for the pros­per­ity of the peo­ple of Europe — or enter on a path of decay.”

Yanis Varo­ufakis, the econ­o­mist who was until recently Greece’s finance min­is­ter, said in a blog post Sun­day that his Ger­man coun­ter­part, Wolf­gang Schäu­ble, flat-out told him that his end goal was to ease Greece out of the Euro­zone in order to teach a les­son to other nations that might want to pur­sue polit­i­cal paths at odds with his vision. Fox Busi­ness reported Sun­day that the IMF was demand­ing Greek Prime Min­is­ter Alexis Tsipras resign, a claim the bank later denied...

Italy’s Prime Min­is­ter, mean­while, begged Ger­many to call off the dogs. “Now com­mon sense must pre­vail and an agree­ment must be reached. Italy does not want Greece to exit the euro and to Ger­many I say: enough is enough,” Ital­ian Prime Min­is­ter Mat­teo Renzi said.“Now that Tsipras has made pro­pos­als in line with the Euro­pean demands, we must absolutely sign a deal. Humil­i­at­ing a Euro­pean part­ner after Greece has given up on just about every­thing is unthinkable.”

The United States has done pre­cious lit­tle to sup­port Greece or the prin­ci­ple of democ­racy in Europe. The Soviet Union may be gone, but the U.S. reluc­tance to inter­venecomes largely from the desire tokeep Ger­many as a strong ally while the U.S. wages a proxy war against Rus­sia in the Ukraine.

If Euro­pean his­tory is any guide, the too-clever cal­cu­la­tions and the petty vin­dic­tive­ness will back­fire in a bad way.

3. It’s cer­tainly look­ing like Wolf­gang Schaeuble’s plan will indeed end up being the plan guid­ing the fate of the Euro­pean project dur­ing the crit­i­cal junc­ture. But what we’ve seen so far doesn’t make Greece’s time in the euro­zone seem like it can go on for much longer because, as Matt O’Brien points out, the offer Ger­many wants to impose on Greece is so bad for Greece that it’s an offer it can’t pos­si­bly accept.

Greece has offered an almost uncon­di­tional sur­ren­der on its bailout, but Ger­many might not accept any­thing less than a Carthagin­ian peace. In other words, a deal that not only forces Athens to sub­mit, but also humil­i­ates it in the process.

This lat­est melo­drama, play­ing out in Brus­selsas Euro­pean finance min­is­ters meet to dis­cuss whether or not to approve a new Greek bailout, appears so non­sen­si­cal that it can be hard to believe these peo­ple are decid­ing the future of Europe. Although you wouldn’t know it from the head­lines, the truth is that Greece and Europe have been close to a deal for awhile now. Both sides agreed about how much aus­ter­ity Athens should do, but dis­agreed about how Athens should do it—at least until last Thurs­day. That’s when Greece came up with an offer that was not only nearly iden­ti­calto Europe’s, but also to the one its peo­ple had just rejected in a ref­er­en­dum. French Pres­i­dent François Hol­lande, whose gov­ern­ment helped put the pro­posal toge­hter, called it a “seri­ous” and “cred­i­ble” one. At the very least, it seemed like the basis for new negotiations.

But maybe not. The prob­lem is that Greece’s econ­omy is in so much worse shape now than it was even a few weeks ago that the tax hikes and spend­ing cuts, which would have pro­duced a 1 per­cent bud­get sur­plus before, won’t any­more. That’s what hap­pens , after all, when the Euro­pean Cen­tral Bank pulls enough of the plug on your banks that they have to close their doors for now to avoid hav­ing to close their doors for good. Busi­nesses can’t get the credit they need to, well, stay in busi­ness, and will then default on the banks that are about to go out of busi­ness them­selves. The entire econ­omy, in other words, shuts down. And that’s why Europe esti­mates that Greece would actu­ally need an 82 bil­lion euro bailout—with 25 bil­lion of that going to its banks—instead of the 53.5 bil­lion euros Athens is ask­ing for. So Greece would have to do more aus­ter­ity than Europe wanted before to get more money than Europe was offer­ing before.

If, that is, Europe is even offer­ing Greece any money any­more. It might not be. The sim­ple story is that Ger­many and the other hard­line coun­tries don’t trust Greece’s anti-austerity Syriza party to actu­ally imple­ment, well, aus­ter­ity. And so rather than cough­ing up another 60 or 70 or 80 bil­lion euros, they seem to want to push to kick Greece out of the com­mon cur­rency instead. That, at least, was the plan that leaked on Sat­ur­day. And now it’s part of the actual plan on Sun­day. Indeed, it’s ten­ta­tively been includedin the Euro­pean finance min­is­ters’ lat­est joint state­ment. This isn’t just what Ger­many is con­sid­er­ing. It’s what Ger­many is try­ing to get the rest of Europe to go along with.

Under the plan, the only way Ger­many would let Greece stay in the euro now is if it sells 50 bil­lion euros of “very valu­able Greek assets,” allows inter­na­tional observers to mon­i­tor its bailout, and puts auto­matic spend­ing cuts in place in case it misses its deficit tar­gets. Oth­er­wise, Ger­many wants Greece to take at least a five year “time­out” from the euro, dur­ing which time its debts could be restruc­tured and it could receive human­i­tar­ian aid. The entire pro­posalwas less than a page long.

In case there was any doubt, this is an offer Greece can’t accept. Sure, sell­ing assets would lower Greece’s debt today, but it would make the rest of Greece’s debt harder to pay back tomorrow—which, accord­ing to the Inter­na­tional Mon­e­tary Fund, is already unpayable. It’s the kind of thing you ask for if you want Athens to say no.

But does that mean Ger­many really wants to get rid of Greece or is this just a ploy to get more con­ces­sions out of Greece? Yes. The prob­lem is it’s hard to know what Chan­cel­lor Angela Merkel really wants. Up till now, she’s been will­ing to do what­ever the least is to keep Greece in the euro, but her finance min­is­ter Wolf­gang Schäu­ble has been push­ingher to give them the boot. That’s let them play a pretty effec­tive good-cop, bad-cop to get the most out of Athens, but this time that’s turned into bad-cop, worse-cop. Schäuble’s plan—and it is his plan—for Greece to “tem­porar­ily” exit the euro report­edly has Merkel’s back­ing. There are even rumorsit has Fin­land, the Nether­lands, Esto­nia, Lithua­nia, Slo­va­kia, and Slovenia’s sup­port as well.

If Greece does leave the euro, though, it will only be tem­po­rary in the sense that all life is tem­po­rary. Bring­ing back the drachma would either be such a boon to Greece’s econ­omy that it’d never want to go back to the euro, or be such a dis­as­ter that Europe would never want to invite it back. But in either case, Greece and Europe’s trial sep­a­ra­tion would turn into a divorce. That might actu­ally be bet­ter for Greece now that it’s already gone through a lot of the pain of ditch­ing the euro—like a finan­cial crisis—but it could be a cat­a­stro­phe for Europe. It wouldn’t just show that coun­tries can leave the euro, but maybe that coun­tries have to leave the euro to recover. So the next time an anti-austerity party wins power, it might decide to do the same, at which point the euro zone would be more like a north­ern euro zone, if that. Espe­cially if France decides that this makes the euro not worth sav­ing anymore.

4.  Big news for Europe and the world today: The euro­zone lost a mem­ber state but gained a brand new vas­sal state! Yes, instead of head­ing out the ‘Grexit’, the Greek gov­ern­ment chose to accept a set of terms that were not only much worse than the aus­ter­ity pack­age Greek vot­ers rejected last week, but basi­cally end the notion of Greece as a nation. But the deal has been reached! Greece gets to stay in the euro­zone. All it needs to do is give up it’s sov­er­eignty and let its new troikan tech­nocrats impose an unstop­pable aus­ter­ity regime that’s worse than any­thing the Greeks have expe­ri­enced thus far. That’s seri­ously the deal.

Note this key point in the new terms that make Greece new troikan-straighjacket so much more dan­ger­ous than the one it’s cur­rently wear­ing: Under the new terms, if Greece’s manda­tory sur­prluses ever fall behind and pre­vent it from fully mak­ing the sched­uled debt repay­ments, a quasi-automatic mech­a­nism will step in to force addi­tional spend­ing cuts…and since those repay­ment short­falls are most likely to hap­pen dur­ing an eco­nomic down­turn, those auto-cuts are likely going to just lead to more auto-cuts!

“Greece Is Being Treated like a Hos­tile Occu­pied State” by Ambrose Evans-PritchardThe Tele­graph; 7/13/2015.


A new deal for Athens is the worst of all worlds and solves nothing

Like the Neapoli­tan Bour­bons – benign by com­par­i­son – the lead­ers of the euro­zone have learned noth­ing, and for­got­ten nothing.

The cruel capit­u­la­tion forced upon Greece after 31 hours on the diplo­matic rack offers no con­ceiv­able way out the country’s per­pet­ual cri­sis. The terms are harsher by a full order of mag­ni­tude than those rejected by Greek vot­ers in a land­slide ref­er­en­dum a week ago, and there­fore can never com­mand demo­c­ra­tic assent.

They must be car­ried through by a Greek par­lia­ment still dom­i­nated by MPs from Left and Right who loathe every line of the sum­mit state­ment, the infa­mous SN 4070/15, and have only agreed – if they have agreed – with a knife to their throats.

EMU inspec­tors can veto leg­is­la­tion. The emas­cu­la­tion of the Greek par­lia­ment has been slipped into the text. All that is miss­ing is a unit of EMU gendarmes.

Such terms are unen­force­able. The cred­i­tors have sought to nail down the new mem­o­ran­dum by trans­fer­ring €50bn of Greek assets to “an inde­pen­dent fund that will mon­e­tise the assets through pri­vati­sa­tions and other means”. It will be used in part to pay off debts.

This fund will be under EU “super­vi­sion”. The cos­metic niceties of sov­er­eignty will be pre­served by let­ting the Greek author­i­ties man­age its day to day affairs. Nobody is fooled.

In other words, they are seiz­ing Greece’s few remain­ing jew­els at source. This is not really dif­fer­ent from the Inter­na­tional Com­mit­tee for Greek Debt Man­age­ment in 1898 imposed on Greece after the coun­try went bank­rupt fol­low­ing a dis­as­trous Balkan war.

A six-power league of bond­hold­ers, led by British bankers, impounded cus­toms duties in the Port of Piraeus, and seized rev­enues from stamp duty, tobacco, salt, kerosene, all the way down to play­ing cards. But at least there was no hum­bug about sol­i­dar­ity and help­ing Greece on that occasion.

“It is the Ver­sailles Treaty for the present age,” said Mr Varo­ufakis this morn­ing, talk­ing to me from from his island home in Aegina.

Under the new terms, Greece must tighten fis­cal pol­icy by roughly 2pc of GDP by next year, push­ing the coun­try fur­ther into a debt-deflation spi­ral and into the next down­wards leg of its six-year depression.

This will cause the gov­ern­ment to miss the bud­get tar­gets yet again – prob­a­bly by a large mar­gin – in an exact repeat of the self-defeating pol­icy that caused Greek debt dynam­ics to spin out of con­trol in the last two Troika loan packages.

As the Inter­na­tional Mon­e­tary Fund acknowl­edged in its famous mea culpa, if you mis­judge the fis­cal mul­ti­plier and force aus­ter­ity beyond the ther­a­peu­tic dose, you make mat­ters worse. The debt to GDP ratio rises despite the cuts.

EMU lead­ers have an answer to this. Like Canute’s courtiers, they will sim­ply com­mand the waves to retreat. The text states that on top of pen­sion cuts and tax increases there should be “quasi-automatic spend­ing cuts in case of devi­a­tions from ambi­tious pri­mary sur­plus targets”,.

In other words, they will be forced to imple­ment pro-cyclical con­trac­tionary poli­cies. The fis­cal slip­page that acted as a slight cush­ion over the last five years will be not be tol­er­ated this time.

And let us not for­get that these pri­mary sur­pluses never made any sense in the first place. They were not drawn up on the basis of macro-economic analy­sis. They were writ­ten into prior agree­ments because that is what would be needed – ceteris paribus – to pre­tend that debt is sus­tain­able, and there­fore that the IMF could sign off on the accords. What a charade.

Nobel econ­o­mist Paul Krug­man says the EMU demands are “mad­ness” on every level. “What we’ve learned these past cou­ple of weeks is that being a mem­ber of the euro­zone means that the cred­i­tors can destroy your econ­omy if you step out of line. This has no bear­ing at all on the under­ly­ing eco­nom­ics of aus­ter­ity,” he said.

“This goes beyond harsh into pure vin­dic­tive­ness, com­plete destruc­tion of national sov­er­eignty, and no hope of relief. It is, pre­sum­ably, meant to be an offer Greece can’t accept; but even so, it’s a grotesque betrayal of every­thing the Euro­pean project was sup­posed to stand for,” he said.

Yes, Syriza has blinked, though there are many chap­ters in this sorry saga yet to come.

The Greek banks are on the verge of col­lapse. There is not enough cash left to cover ATM with­drawals of €60bn each day through this week, or to cover weekly pay­ments of €120 to pen­sion­ers and the unem­ployed – that is the to say, the tiny frac­tion of the job­less who receive any­thing at all.

Cap­i­tal con­trols have led to an eco­nomic stand-still. Almost noth­ing is com­ing into the coun­try. Firms are run­ning down their last stocks of raw mate­ri­als and vital imports. Hun­dreds of fac­to­ries, mills, and pro­cess­ing plants have already cut shifts and are prepar­ing to shut down oper­a­tions as soon as this week.

Late tourist book­ings have crashed by 30pc. Syriza faced a seri­ous risk that the coun­try would run out of imported food stocks by end of this month, with calami­tous con­se­quences at the peak of the tourist sea­son. So yes, faced with the full hor­ror of what is hap­pen­ing, they recoiled.

There is no doubt that Syriza sold the Greek peo­ple a false prospec­tus with its incom­pat­i­ble promises both to tear up the Troika Mem­o­ran­dum and to keep Greece in the euro. They have learned a hor­ri­ble lesson.

Yet that is only half the story. We have also watched the EMU cred­i­tor pow­ers bring a coun­try to knees by cut­ting off the emer­gency liq­uid­ity (ELA) to the bank­ing system.

Let there be no doubt, it was the deci­sion by the Euro­pean Cen­tral Bank to freeze ELA at €89bn two weeks ago that pre­cip­i­tated the final cri­sis and broke Syriza’s will to resist. The lines of author­ity on this episode are blurred. Per­son­ally, I do not blame the ECB’s Mario Draghi for this abuse of power. It was in essence a polit­i­cal deci­sion by the Eurogroup.

But how­ever you dress it up, the fact remains that the ECB is by its acts dic­tat­ing a polit­i­cal set­tle­ment, and serv­ing as the enforce­ment arm of the cred­i­tors rather than uphold­ing EU treaty law.

It took a stand that fur­ther desta­bilised the finan­cial sys­tem of an EMU mem­ber state that was already in grave trou­ble, and arguably did so in breach of its pri­mary treaty duty to uphold finan­cial sta­bil­ity. It is a water­shed moment.

What we have all seen with great clar­ity is that the EMU cred­i­tor pow­ers can sub­ju­gate an unruly state – pro­vided it is small — by shut­ting down its bank­ing sys­tem. We have seen too that a small coun­try has no defences what­so­ever. This is mon­e­tary power run amok.

To make mat­ters worse Greek pre­mier Alexis Tsipras can­not make a plau­si­ble case to his own peo­ple that he has secured debt relief, the one prize that could have saved him. Ger­many blocked even this.

It did so despite mas­sive pres­sure from the Obama White House and the IMF, and even though France, Italy, and the lead­ers of the EU Com­mis­sion and Coun­cil accept that a hair­cut of some sort is necessary.

The IMF says debt relief must be at least 30pc of GDP. Even this is too low. Given the dam­age done by six years of eco­nomic implo­sion, a lost decade of invest­ment, chronic hys­tere­sis, youth unem­ploy­ment of 50pc or higher, a brain drain of the edu­cated, and a ruined bank­ing sys­tem, it would still be inad­e­quate even if the entire debt was writ­ten off. That is what this EMU exper­i­ment has done to the country.

Yet all the Greeks get is vague talk of a “pos­si­ble” exten­sion of matu­ri­ties, at some point in the future, once they have jumped through umpteen hoops and passed their exams. This is what they were promised in 2012. It never happened.

“If the specifics of debt relief are not writ­ten clearly into the over­all pack­age, this is not worth any­thing,” said Mr Varoufakis.

The sum­mit doc­u­ment asserts with self-serving dis­hon­esty that Greece’s debt has come off the rails due to the fail­ure of Greek gov­ern­ments to stick to the Mem­o­ran­dum over the last year. Had this not occurred, the debt would still be sustainable.

This is a lie. Pub­lic debt bal­looned to 180pc late last year – long before Syriza was elected – and even though the New Democ­racy gov­ern­ment had com­plied with most Troika demands.

The truth is that Greece was already bank­rupt in 2010. EMU cred­i­tors refused to allow a nor­mal debt restruc­tur­ing to take place because it would have led to instant con­ta­gion to Por­tu­gal, Spain, and Italy at a time when the euro­zone had no lender-of-last resort or defences.

Leaked doc­u­ments from the IMF leave no doubt that the res­cue was intended to save the euro and Euro­pean banks, not Greece. More debt was shov­eled onto the Greek tax­pay­ers in order to buy time, both in 2010 and again in 2012, stor­ing up the cri­sis that Europe faces today.

In an odd way, the only Euro­pean politi­cian who was really offer­ing Greece a way out of the impasse was Wolf­gang Schauble, the Ger­man finance min­is­ter, even if his offer was made in a grace­less fash­ion, almost in the form of diktat.

His plan for a five-year vel­vet with­drawal from EMU – a euphemism, since he really meant Grexit – with Paris Club debt relief, human­i­tar­ian help, and a pack­age of growth mea­sures, might allow Greece to regain com­pet­i­tive­ness under the drachma in an orderly way.

Such a for­mula would imply inter­ven­tion by the ECB to sta­bilise the drachma, pre­vent­ing an over­shoot and dan­ger­ous down­ward spi­ral. It would cer­tainly have been bet­ter than the atro­cious doc­u­ment that Mr Tsipras must now take back to Athens.

The crushed Syriza leader must sell a set­tle­ment that leaves Greece in a per­ma­nent debt trap, under neo-colonial con­trol, and so eco­nom­i­cally frag­ile that it is almost guar­an­teed to crash into a fresh cri­sis in the next global down­turn or Euro­pean recession.

At that point, every­body will blame the Greeks again, unfairly, and we will go through yet another round of bit­ter nego­ti­a­tions, until some­thing finally breaks this grim cycle of fail­ure and recrimination.

For the euro­zone this “deal” is the worst of all worlds. They have solved noth­ing. Ger­many and its allies have for the first time attempted to eject a coun­try from the euro, and by doing so have vio­lated the sanc­tity of mon­e­tary union.

I will return to the behav­iour of Ger­many and the diplo­matic dis­as­ter that has unfolded over com­ing days. For now let me just quote the ver­dict of his­to­rian Simon Schama.

“If Tsipras was wear­ing the crown of King Pyrrhus this time last week, Merkel is wear­ing it now. Her ulti­ma­tum the begin­ning of the end of the EU,” he said. Exactly.

Under the new terms, Greece must tighten fis­cal pol­icy by roughly 2pc of GDP by next year, push­ing the coun­try fur­ther into a debt-deflation spi­ral and into the next down­wards leg of its six-year depression.

This will cause the gov­ern­ment to miss the bud­get tar­gets yet again – prob­a­bly by a large mar­gin – in an exact repeat of the self-defeating pol­icy that caused Greek debt dynam­ics to spin out of con­trol in the last two Troika loan packages.

As the Inter­na­tional Mon­e­tary Fund acknowl­edged in its famous mea culpa, if you mis­judge the fis­cal mul­ti­plier and force aus­ter­ity beyond the ther­a­peu­tic dose, you make mat­ters worse. The debt to GDP ratio rises despite the cuts.

EMU lead­ers have an answer to this. Like Canute’s courtiers, they will sim­ply com­mand the waves to retreat. The text states that on top of pen­sion cuts and tax increases there should be “quasi-automatic spend­ing cuts in case of devi­a­tions from ambi­tious pri­mary sur­plus targets”,.

In other words, they will be forced to imple­ment pro-cyclical con­trac­tionary poli­cies. The fis­cal slip­page that acted as a slight cush­ion over the last five years will be not be tol­er­ated this time.

5. Far too little, much too late. The IMF has relented on austerity for Greece, much too late.

Greeks reacted with an air of vin­di­ca­tion and out­rage at the Inter­na­tional Mon­e­tary Fund’s admis­sion it erred in its han­dling of the country’s bailout, berat­ing an apol­ogy that comes too late to sal­vage an econ­omy and count­less lives in ruins.

Anger was pal­pa­ble on the streets of Athens, where the EU-IMF aus­ter­ity recipe that the Washington-based fund says it sharply mis­judged has left rows of shut­tered stores and many scroung­ing for scraps of food in trash cans.

“Really? Thanks for let­ting us know but we can’t for­give you,” said Apos­to­los Trikali­nos, a 59-year old garbage col­lec­tor and a father of two.

“Let’s not fool our­selves. They’ll never give us any­thing back. I’m sorry for all the peo­ple who killed them­selves because of aus­ter­ity. How are we going to bring them back? How?”

The IMF acknowl­edged on Wednes­day that it under­es­ti­mated the dam­age done to Greece’s econ­omy from spend­ing cuts and tax hikes imposed in a bailout, which was accom­pa­nied by one of the worst eco­nomic col­lapses ever expe­ri­enced by a coun­try in peacetime.

A report look­ing back on the bailout said the Fund veered from its own stan­dards to over­es­ti­mate how much debt Greece could bear, and should have pushed harder and sooner for pri­vate lenders to take a “hair­cut” to reduce Greece’s debt burden.

Prime Min­is­ter Anto­nis Sama­ras told reporters the acknowl­edg­ment jus­ti­fied his posi­tions. He had crit­i­cized from the out­set “what the IMF has called mistakes”.

“And we have been cor­rect­ing those mis­takes over the past year,” Sama­ras told reporters dur­ing a visit to Helsinki.

Greeks have seen their incomes plunge by about a third since the debt cri­sis erupted in 2009 and prompted Greece to seek two bailouts from the EU and the IMF. The unem­ploy­ment rate has hit nearly 27 per­cent and sui­cide rates have soared. Worst hit have been the youth, nearly 60 per­cent of whom are unemployed.

“The IMF admits to the crime,” the left­ist Avgi news­pa­per declared on its front page. Top sell­ing news­pa­per Ta Nea branded it an “admis­sion of failure”.

In the cor­ri­dors of power, some offi­cials sug­gested the admis­sion could strengthen their hand in future talks with the IMF, Euro­pean Union and Euro­pean Cen­tral Bank, col­lec­tively known as the troika, on debt relief or new aus­ter­ity measures.

“It is pos­i­tive that the report rec­og­nizes that there were mis­takes in Greece’s pro­gram in the past and we hope that they will not be repeated in the future and then cre­ate the need for cor­rec­tive action,” a senior gov­ern­ment offi­cial told Reuters.

The crushed Syriza leader must sell a set­tle­ment that leaves Greece in a per­ma­nent debt trap, under neo-colonial con­trol, and so eco­nom­i­cally frag­ile that it is almost guar­an­teed to crash into a fresh cri­sis in the next global down­turn or Euro­pean recession.

At that point, every­body will blame the Greeks again, unfairly, and we will go through yet another round of bit­ter nego­ti­a­tions, until some­thing finally breaks this grim cycle of fail­ure and recrimination.

For the euro­zone this “deal” is the worst of all worlds. They have solved noth­ing. Ger­many and its allies have for the first time attempted to eject a coun­try from the euro, and by doing so have vio­lated the sanc­tity of mon­e­tary union.

6. Over the years, we have been privileged to feature Lucy Komisar as an expert commentator on matters economic, “offshore” business matters, in particular. At a recent address by German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schauble (given to the Council on Foreign Relations) Lucy braced the veteran politician over Germany’s hypocrisy concerning Greek debt. Schauble’s equivocation on the issue did not shake Lucy’s efforts to pin him down. In the article below, do note the observations of Albrecht Ritschl, professor of economic history at the London School of Economics.” . . . .  Ritschl said, “If we accept that Germany’s national product is somewhere to the tune of over 2 trillion euros, which is beyond 2.5 trillion U.S. dollars, we would be talking about a default and debt forgiveness of somewhere in the range of 10 trillion dollars. I would tend to think that this is probably unrivaled in 20th century history. . . . .” Some background information to flesh out listeners’ understanding of these issues can be found in an introduction to the anti-fascist books available for download on this website. Other posts and programs have dealt with the issue of Germany, the EMU, Greece’s debt and the Third Reich’s economic exploitation of “the cradle of democracy.”The political, historical and economic dynamics underlying Greece’s perils exemplify why we so often cite the primary importance of the Bormann capital network. Be sure to click on the link below to hear Lucy’s question at the CFR talk, as well as links to an important interviewwith Albrecht Ritschl.

German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble spoke at the Council on Foreign Relations on Wednesday. With a politician’s practiced spin, he declared that Germany didn’t owe any money from billions it had extorted from Greece during its World War II occupation, because for a period after the war, it had no sovereign government. WHAT!

Lucy asks Schäuble to explain difference in morality of Germans and Greeks repaying debts.

According to Forbes, the amount owed to Greece, without interest, in today’s money, would amount to $14 billion. With interest at 3% over 66 years, that would come to at least $95 billion.
The Greek debt is $341 billion. The latest cliff-hanger debt repayment to the IMF was $486 million. Done with money that could have gone to health care, pensions, jobs. Do the math.
I asked Schäuble: “What is the moral distinction between the obligation of Greece to pay back loans that were negotiated by previous corrupt governments and Germany’s obligation to pay back the loan that the Nazi government extorted from Greece?”

GOVTS HAVE TO PAY PAST GOVT DEBTS, EXCEPT IF THEY ARE NAZIS

On Greece paying its debts, he said: “The problem of Greece is not the problem of whether former Greek governments have been a better legitimization than the given government. That is always in democracies. The people elect in a parliament or a president and then this is a given government, and the next government has to take liability from the former government. Otherwise, you can’t—it’s difficult to get the world in a—in a civilized—(inaudible).

“Whether Greek governments have been corrupt or not, it’s not the subject to be judged by others. And of course, we know fighting corruption is not only in Greece a problem, but in a lot of member states.

“But having said this, the problem of Greek is not the loans given. The problem of Greece is the lack of competitiveness. And the problem of Greece is that Greece has enjoyed, since having joined the Eurozone, low interest rates. And they didn’t use this opportunity to increase their competitiveness, what has been the assumption in joining the Eurozone.”

Wolfgang Schäuble answers Lucy’s question.

But on Germany paying its debts, everything was reversed. “So what is the German, you can’t—would you really compare a former Greek government with the Nazi—with the Nazi times? It makes no sense.”

Does he mean that if a government is really bad, criminal, murderous, genocidal, it doesn’t have to pay its debts?

Schäuble: “And having said, I would like—I have been born in 1942. I have the memory that in—since 1945, Germany had not any sovereignty. We had—it was—in some way it was something like—(chuckles)—the end of German history as a state. And we only regained our full sovereignty in 1990—in 1990—on the start of October, 1990.

“And what we have to—what we have—how we had to deal with our ongoing responsibility for our past. And I feel strongly responsible for the heritage of German history, to be very clear. But you can’t mix it, the one with the other. And we have international rules. We have international law. We have international courts. We accept all decisions of international courts, even the criminal court.

“Not any well-admired member state does accept membership in the International Criminal Court, by the way. For example, we do—of course, we do, German. But having said this, it’s nothing to be compared. I’m sorry. I have no idea to compare this.”

I have been reading and rereading his answer. And I am dizzy. Are you dizzy yet?

The idea is that because Germany was defeated in 1945 and was no longer a state, its debts until 1990 don’t count. So what happened about the part that a government takes liability from the former government? Except for Germany? Remember that the Nazis were elected. Not to mention that now the Germans are very rich and one of its victim countries, which suffered massive destruction by the Nazis, is very poor.

GET OUT OF DEBT FREE CARD

And there are “international law” and “international courts” — which have conveniently been used to absolve Germany of its debts. The best explanation of the “get out of debt free” card I’ve seen is by Albrecht Ritschl, professor of economic history at the London School of Economics. He says this in an interview with Michael Nevradakis, a U.S. Fulbright Scholar in Athens.

Albrecht Ritschl, professor of economic history at the London School of Economics.

After WWII: “The first thing the occupation authorities did was to block all kinds of claims by and against the German government, under the legal fiction that that the German government and the German state didn’t exist anymore.”

The U.S. blocked claims on the German war debt “through an ingenious and slightly malicious device: Whichever country wanted to receive Marshall aid from the Americans under the Marshall Plan had to sign a waiver waiving all kinds of financial claims against Germany from World War II against Marshall aid.

“This means that it would not be entirely blocked, but it would have to [be] put on hold until postwar Germany had paid off its Marshall aid from the United States.

“In technical terms what that did was to make reparation and credit claims against Germany from World War II junior, second rank, lower in rank to Marshall assistance to Germany. And since everybody wanted to get Marshall aid from America, everybody grudgingly signed these waivers. So the situation during the Marshall Plan period was that all these debts still existed on paper, but they were worthless in the sense that the debt was blocked.”

The London Agreement on German Debt continued to block claims. “In the early 1950s, negotiations were started between West Germany and the creditor countries about what to do with all of this. A solution was found – basically imposed again by the Americans and to some extent by the British – that did two things. First, it lumped together the war debts with the reparations – which is not an innocuous step to take. Second, it used slightly fuzzy language, which is open to interpretations, which said that settlement of these issues would be postponed until after future German reunification.”

Reunification happened in 1990. But still no payment. Circle back to the first point. The Germany that incurred the debt no longer existed. And forget the part about countries being liable for the debts of former governments.

The money Germany would owe is huge. Ritschl said, “If we accept that Germany’s national product is somewhere to the tune of over 2 trillion euros, which is beyond 2.5 trillion U.S. dollars, we would be talking about a default and debt forgiveness of somewhere in the range of 10 trillion dollars. I would tend to think that this is probably unrivaled in 20th century history.”

GOVTS HAVE TO PAY PAST GOVT DEBTS, EXCEPT IF THEY WERE NAZIS

At reunification, Germany got another “get out of debt free” card. Ritschl says, “In 1990. Germany received this kind of baptism certificate for a unified Germany which is incredibly subtly worded and whose only purpose was, apparently, to prevent reparation or restitution claims against unified Germany being raised on the grounds of the fact that there is a unified German state now and that something like article 5 of the London debt agreement could all of a sudden be reactivated.
“The German point of view is essentially that the so-called 2+4 treaty of 1990 is not making any mention of any reparations or wartime debts of Nazi Germany, and given the fact that this issue is not covered by the treaty, the issue is essentially dead. This has consistently been the position of the German government. The German position has so far been quite successful . . . several attempts to challenge it in the European court have been unsuccessful, and it seems to me that from a legal standpoint, there is relatively little chance that this will be successfully challenged.”
Power trumps morality every time.

7. The rest of this program description presents information set forth in previous broadcasts about the Greek tragedy. As noted in FTR #788, in late 2011, the Troika (the IMF, European Commission and ECB–read “Germany”) imposed the inclusion of an outright fascist party headed by a Holocaust denier as part of the imposition of EU/EMU “Clausewitzian economics” on Greece.

. . . Recently, a rightwing extrem­ist party was again made a direct coali­tion part­ner in a country’s gov­ern­ment — in Greece. The newly installed tran­si­tional gov­ern­ment — imposed under the super­vi­sion of Berlin and Brus­sels — includes not only the con­ser­v­a­tive and social demo­c­ra­tic par­ties but also the LAOS Party (Laikós Orthó­doxos Synager­més, “Ortho­dox People’s Alarm”). The LAOS Party musters also par­ti­sans of the for­mer mil­i­tary dic­ta­tor­ship and is known for its racist and anti-Semitic invec­tives. Gior­gos Karatzaferis, LAOS Party Chair­per­son, is quoted to have pro­claimed that he is proud “not to be Jew­ish, homo­sex­ual and com­mu­nist,” which “only few can claim.“[5] He is said to have called out to the Israeli ambas­sador: “Jew ambas­sador, watch out where you tread! Let’s dis­cuss the Holo­caust, let’s talk about all the fairy tales about Auschwitz and Dachau.“[6] Makis Voridis, a mem­ber of the LAOS Party and min­is­ter of trans­porta­tion in the Greek gov­ern­ment, imposed by Berlin and Brus­sels, began his polit­i­cal career as the leader of a youth orga­ni­za­tion of the party presided over by Geor­gios Papadopou­los. Papadopou­los had been the mil­i­tary com­man­der of the junta. He founded that party after he had been released from prison, in the after­math of the over­throw of his dic­ta­tor­ship. The Ger­man gov­ern­ment evi­dently con­sid­ers the LAOS Party help­ful for imple­ment­ing its aus­ter­ity dictate. . . .

8. “The Ham­mer” is back. Makis “The Ham­mer” Voridis is Greece’s new Health Min­is­ter.

In FTR #788, we noted the joint progress of German/EU-imposed “austerity” and fascism in Greece.

With the country’s poverty-driven health care approximating a lethal, slow-motion eugenics program, Greece’s “Clausewitzian Economics” figures to accelerate with the appointment of Makis Voridis, a doctrinaire Nazi, to administer the Greek Health Ministry.

As the German-dominated EMU and EU “bring the hammer down” on the European economy and citizenry, it is grimly fascinating to watch this hands-on application of Von Clausewitz’s theoretical principles.

Generally considered in the context of military strategy and tactics, Von Clausewitz’s concept of Total War lends itself readily to economics and social policy.

Having Voridis as Greece’s Health Minister reminds us of Josef Mengele, selecting those fit for work from those designated for immediate gassing at Auschwitz.

“Yacht Apps and Anti-Semitic Min­is­ters in the Birth­place of Democracy” by Mark Ames; Pando Daily; 6/15/2014.

Good and bad eco­nom­ics news out of the birth­place of democracy.

The good news: Accord­ing to the Wall Street Jour­nal, Greece is see­ing a boom in tech star­tups. Of course, that boom starts from a very low num­ber, as the Jour­nal reports:

“there were 144 star­tups in Greece in 2013, up from just 16 in 2010. The money invested in them has climbed to €42 mil­lion ($57 mil­lion), com­pared with just €500,000 three years ago.”

Most of the fund­ing is geared towards ser­vic­ing the sec­tor of Greece that hasn’t been ruined by the past few years of EU-imposed aus­ter­ity, which rules out a large per­cent­age of under-35s, the pre­sumed Inter­net gen­er­a­tion. The unem­ploy­ment rate for young Greeks aged 15–24 is 58.3%, while for 25–34 year old Greeks, the unem­ploy­ment rate is 35.5%. Excit­ing new Greek star­tups attract­ing out­side VC cap­i­tal, like incred­i­blue— an online yacht book­ing ser­vice — and Tax­ibeat, a mobile taxi­cab hail­ing app — aren’t going to be much use to them.

Still, Greece’s “boom­ing” tech sec­tor is the good news.

Now, the bad news: Greece’s pro-EU rul­ing con­ser­v­a­tive party, the New Democ­rats, just named an actual neo-Nazi, Makis “The Ham­mer” Voridis, as Greece’s new Health Min­is­terJew­ish groups are outraged over the news that Voridis—a long­time neo-fascist activist and anti-Semite who has pub­licly pro­moted the Pro­to­cols of the Elders of Zion as wor­thy of schol­ar­ship, and doubted the authen­tic­ity of the Diary of Anne Frank—is serv­ing as a promi­nent min­is­ter in the rul­ing party’s cab­i­net, in charge of an impor­tant min­istry at a time when Greece has been gutting its health care bud­gets, caus­ing wide­spread misery.

I wrote about Voridis in Novem­ber 2011, because I was shocked that a gov­ern­ment coali­tion essen­tially imposed on Greece by the EU and West­ern cred­i­tors would demand that the allegedly tech­no­cratic “aus­ter­ity coali­tion” included mem­bers of Greece’s anti-Semitic, neo-fascist LAOS partyInclud­ing Makis “The Ham­mer” Voridis, who served as min­is­ter of infra­struc­ture and trans­port.

I call him “The Ham­mer” because photographs sur­faced show­ing Voridis as a Uni­ver­sity of Athens law stu­dent, car­ry­ing a makeshift stone ham­mer in hand which he used to bash sus­pected left­wing stu­dents with. That was in 1985, when Voridis was in a fas­cist group called “Stu­dent Alter­na­tive” which sup­ported Greece’s bloody mil­i­tary coup and mil­i­tary junta that ruled from 1967–1974.

Voridis was expelled from law school for club­bing left­ist stu­dents, and went on to Big Things in the world of neo-fascist Greek pol­i­tics. In 1994, he founded the far-right Hel­lenic Front, which in 2004 formed a coali­tion with a self-described Nazi, Kon­stan­ti­nos Plevris, who openly advo­cated for the exter­mi­na­tion of Greece’s remain­ing Jews. In 2005, Voridis merged his party into the LAOS party, whose leader, Geor­gios Karatzaferis, pub­licly mocked Auschwitz and Dachau death camps as “myths,” blamed Jews for 9/11 dur­ing a speech in par­lia­ment, and said “the Jews have no legit­i­macy to speak in Greece.”

In late 2011, as Greece pol­i­tics col­lapsed under the weight of its debts and the harsh EU-imposed aus­ter­ity mea­sures, the EU imposed a new “aus­ter­ity” gov­ern­ment that included “The Ham­mer” Voridis and other mem­bers of the neo-fascist LAOS party. The aus­ter­ity gov­ern­ment ran Greece until new elec­tions were called in mid-2012. In those interim months, the aus­ter­ity coali­tion pushed through rad­i­cal aus­ter­ity mea­sures that caused LAOS’ fas­cist vot­ers to desert them for an even more vio­lent, more extreme neo-Nazi party, the Golden Dawn Party. One would’ve thought that’d be the end of Makis Voridis.

But Voridis is one of the slyer fas­cists. He joined the aus­ter­ity cab­i­net and served from Novem­ber 2011 through June 2012. In the June 2012 elec­tions, after LAOS was oblit­er­ated for par­tic­i­pat­ing in the aus­ter­ity gov­ern­ment, Voridis aban­doned LAOS and joined the new rul­ing party that won the elec­tions, the respectable right-wing New Democ­racy party.

And now New Democ­racy is pay­ing back the favor to their favorite aus­ter­ity fascist.

9. The program reviews the European Monetary Union as the realization of the theories of Pan-German theoretician Friedrich List.

Writing in 1943, Paul Winkler foresaw that the Prusso-Teutonics would realize their goals through the creation of a German-dominated central European economic union (bearing a striking resemblance to today’s European Monetary Union.) One of the principal influences on List’s thinking was the “continental” concept of Napoleon, who attempted to economically unite Europe under French influence.

The Thousand-Year Conspiracy; by Paul Winkler; Charles Scribner’s Sons [HC]; 1943; pp. 15-16.

Charles Andler, a French author, summed up certain ideas of List in his work, The Origins of Pan-Germanism, (published in 1915.) ‘It is necessary to organize continental Europe against England. Napoleon I, a great strategist, also knew the methods of economic hegemony. His continental system, which met with opposition even from countries which might have profited from such an arrangement should be revived, but, this time, not as an instrument of Napoleonic domination. The idea of united Europe in a closed trade bloc is no longer shocking if Germany assumes domination over such a bloc—and not France. [Emphasis added.] Belgium, Holland, Switzerland, willingly or by force, will enter this ‘Customs Federation.’ Austria is assumed to be won over at the outset. Even France, if she gets rid of her notions of military conquest, will not be excluded. The first steps the Confederation would take to assure unity of thought and action would be to establish a joint representative body, as well as to organize a common fleet. But of course, both the headquarters of the Federation and its parliamentary seat would be in Germany. [Emphasis added.]”

10. List’s doctrine was in full swing during Germany’s prosecution of the First World War:

“WW1 Cen­te­nary — His­tor­i­cal Revi­sion In British Gov­ern­ment Cir­cles”; Ger­many Watch; 6/11/2013.

. . . . This is a direct trans­la­tion of [Ger­man Chan­cel­lor] Bethman-Hollweg’s inter­nal memo on Germany’s war aims, from Sep­tem­ber 1914. . . .

“. . . . We must cre­ate a cen­tral Euro­pean eco­nomic asso­ci­a­tion through com­mon cus­toms treaties, to include France, Bel­gium, Hol­land, Den­mark, Austria-Hungary, Poland and per­haps Italy, Swe­den and Nor­way. This asso­ci­a­tion will not have any com­mon con­sti­tu­tional supreme author­ity and all its mem­bers will be for­mally equal, but in prac­tice will be under Ger­man lead­er­ship and must sta­bi­lize Germany’s eco­nomic dom­i­nance over ‘Mid­dle Europe’ . . .”

11. The Listian model was put into effect by the Third Reich, as can be gleaned by read­ing Dorothy Thompson’s analy­sis of Germany’s plans for world dom­i­nance by a cen­tral­ized Euro­pean eco­nomic union. Ms. Thomp­son was writ­ing in The New York Her­ald Tri­bune on May 31, 1940! Her com­ments are repro­duced by Tetens on page 92.

Germany Plots with the Kremlin; T.H. Tetens; Henry Schuman [HC]; 1953; p. 92.

. . . . The Ger­mans have a clear plan of what they intend to do in case of vic­tory. I believe that I know the essen­tial details of that plan. I have heard it from a suf­fi­cient num­ber of impor­tant Ger­mans to credit its authen­tic­ity . . . Germany’s plan is to make a cus­toms union of Europe, with com­plete finan­cial and eco­nomic con­trol cen­tered in Berlin. This will cre­ate at once the largest free trade area and the largest planned econ­omy in the world. In West­ern Europe alone . . . there will be an eco­nomic unity of 400 mil­lion per­sons . . . To these will be added the resources of the British, French, Dutch and Bel­gian empires. These will be pooled in the name of Europa Germanica . . .

“The Ger­mans count upon polit­i­cal power fol­low­ing eco­nomic power, and not vice versa. Ter­ri­to­r­ial changes do not con­cern them, because there will be no ‘France’ or ‘Eng­land,’ except as lan­guage groups. Lit­tle imme­di­ate con­cern is felt regard­ing polit­i­cal orga­ni­za­tions . . . . No nation will have the con­trol of its own finan­cial or eco­nomic sys­tem or of its cus­toms. [Italics are mine–D.E.] The Naz­i­fi­ca­tion of all coun­tries will be accom­plished by eco­nomic pres­sure. In all coun­tries, con­tacts have been estab­lished long ago with sym­pa­thetic busi­ness­men and indus­tri­al­ists . . . . As far as the United States is con­cerned, the plan­ners of the World Ger­man­ica laugh off the idea of any armed inva­sion. They say that it will be com­pletely unnec­es­sary to take mil­i­tary action against the United States to force it to play ball with this sys­tem. . . . Here, as in every other coun­try, they have estab­lished rela­tions with numer­ous indus­tries and com­mer­cial orga­ni­za­tions, to whom they will offer advan­tages in co-operation with Germany. . . .

12. The European Economic Community was formally articulated by Reich officials during the war, with the clear design to extend and amplify the arrangement after the war. Below, we quote Gustave Koenigs, Secretary of State at a 1942 conference about the European Economic Community.

Europaische Wirtschafts Gemeinschaft (European Economic Community–translation).

. . . At the moment the so-called “European Economic Community” is not yet fact; there is no pact, no organisation, no council and no General Secretary. However, it is not just a part of our imagination or some dream by a politician – it is very real. . . .

. . .  Its roots are in the economic co-operation of the European nations and it will develop after the war into a permanent European economic community. . . .

13. A  captured German document from April of 1945–a few weeks before the end of World War II–that very succinctly lays out the plans for postwar Europe.

Germany Plots with the Kremlin; T.H. Tetens; Henry Schuman [HC]; 1953; p. 240.

Document II

THE EUROPEAN PEACE-ORDER

1. Liberation of the German people from suppression and occupation.

2. Repatration of the expellees (Heimholung der Verschleppten) [These are the vertriebene groups and the German ministry for Expellees–D.E.]

3. An integral German racial community.

4. Elimination of all arbitrary acts by the enemy.

5. European Union on a federalistic basis. [That IS the EU–D.E.]

6. Right to racial autonomy. [Note that, in the most recent German election, Polish citizens of German extraction were allowed to vote–D.E..]

7. European Common-Weal (“Gemeinnutz”).

8. European Court of Arbitration [The ICC is funded by Germany and is essentially a realization of this!–D.E.]

9. Community of related peoples with the final aim to create a Germanic Reich.

10. Common-wealth between Germany and Bohemia and Moravia.

11. Guaranteed protection of racial groups (“Volksgruppen-recht”).

12. Economic integration of Europe. [That is the EMU–D.E.]

13.  Underlying Germany’s dominance of Europe is well over a century of applied Von Clausewitzian ecnomics.

Authors Borkin and Welsh analyze how the Nazis took advantage of the budding globalized economy to restrict both their enemies’ strategic production and their access to critical raw materials. The same cartel agreements gave the German war economy access to technological know-how and raw materials vital to the successful prosecution of modern industrial warfare. Learning the lessons of defeat from World War I, the German military-industrial complex also sought to use technological innovation to make up for key areas of shortfall. Utilizing leading-edge technology to great advantage, companies such as I.G. Farben developed processes to synthesize oil, rubber, narcotics to treat casualties and other innovations that greatly aided the German wartime economy.

Key to the German industrial offensive was the doctrine of the famous Prussian military philosopher Karl von Clausewitz—the first strategic thinker to formalize the concept of “Total War.” On pages 16 and 17, Borkin and Welsh discuss von Clausewitz’s analysis of the relationship between war and peace, essential to understanding the concept of Total War.

By contrast, the German firms’ foreign cartel partners looked on these relationships as mere vehicles to maximize profits by eliminating competition and limiting production.

Germany’s Master Plan–The Story of An Industrial Offensive by Joseph Borkin and Charles A. Welsh; Duell, Sloan and Pierce 1944 [HC]; pp. 16-17.

 . . . . Germany has long understood this strategy of total war. Karl von Clausewitz, the father of modern German militarism, set out its major premise when he said, ‘War is no independent thing; the main lineaments of all great strategic plans are of a political nature, the more so the more they include the totality of War and the State.’ To von Clausewitz, peace was a continuation of war by other means. In effect, he said to Germany, ‘Disarm your enemy in peace by diplomacy and trade if you would conquer him more readily on the field of battle.’ This philosophy of war-in-peace became the keynote of Germany’s political and economic intercourse with other nations. These tenets explain why, twice within a generation, we have entered war not only facing the might of German armies, but shackled by economic bondage to German industry. German-controlled cartels were at all times the servants of German interest. That their loyalty to Germany was undivided explains the uniformity of the agreements which they made. Germany’s industrial attack had as its cardinal purpose the reversal of blockade. Patents and secret ‘know-how’ were used to bar our access to our own technology. . . .

. . . To businessmen in the United States, England, and France, international cartels were an efficient means of guaranteeing monopoly. Industrialists outside of Germany thought in terms of low output, high prices, and maximum profits. They regarded divisions of both territory and fields of production as comfortable and easily policed methods by which they could free themselves from competition and create spheres of monopoly. . . .

15. As a result of this sharp disparity in the viewpoints of the German and Allied industrialists, the armies facing the Third Reich’s soldiers on the field of battle were placed at a fundamental disadvantage. On pages 13 and 14, Borkin and Welsh highlight the military results of the cartel agreements:

Germany’s Master Plan–The Story of An Industrial Offensive by Joseph Borkin and Charles A. Welsh; Duell, Sloan and Pierce 1944 [HC]; pp. 13-14.

 . . . Wherever there was a cartel before, in 1942, there was a military shortage. The Army and Navy petitioned civilians to turn in binoculars and lenses. The Baruch Committee reported that if we do not solve the synthetic rubber problem, we face a ‘civilian and military collapse.’ The gallant stand of MacArthur’s men on Bataan became more desperate because they found themselves without quinine. The growing priority lists of chemicals and plastics were an inventory of cartels. When we tried to tool up our new factories, with every second of passing time working against us, the lack of tungsten carbide blunted the edge of our effort. This roster of scarce materials and the absence of substitutes have a common cause.”

These shortages speak volumes for the brilliant planning of the German offensive. The first ‘Report to the Nation,’ issued January 14, 1942, by the Office of Facts and Figures, says: ‘[The enemy] has worked for many years to weaken our military potential. Through patent controls and cartel agreements he succeeded in limiting American production and export of many vital materials. He kept the prices of these materials up and the output down. He was waging war, and he did his work well, decoying important American companies into agreements, the purpose of which they did not sense. . . . The list of materials affected is long—beryllium, optical instruments, magnesium, tungsten carbide, pharmaceuticals, hormones, dyes, and many more. When you match each product with its military use, the significance of the attack becomes clear. Beryllium is a vital element for alloys that make shell springs; magnesium makes airplanes and incendiary bombs; tungsten carbide is essential for precision machine tools. Concealed behind dummy corporations, the enemy went unchecked for years, using our own legal machinery to hamstring us. [Italics added.]’ During the past twenty years, this cartel device has been the first line of German assault. . . .

15. Actualizing the von Clausewitz doctrine that “war is a continuation of policy by other means,” the Third Reich and its Axis allies used their military onslaught to drastically exacerbate the imbalance in strategic industrial production. On pages 15 and 16, the authors write: “The effect of Axis victories, in Europe and in the Pacific, give them an advantage which we will spend many thousands of lives to overcome. The reversal of position is starkly evident in the following figures on some of the major resources: ”

Germany’s Master Plan–The Story of An Industrial Offensive by Joseph Borkin and Charles A. Welsh; Duell, Sloan and Pierce 1944 [HC]; pp. 15-16.

 

PERCENTAGE OF AXIS CONTROL OF WORLD PRODUCTION

 

Discussion

One comment for “FTR #855: Greek Tragedy, Part 3”

  1. Is the European Union (EU) is a continuation of a power structure designed to benefit German based or controlled multi-national corporations through a cartel system that was originally identified by Prussian Economist Frederick Von List then formalized with a plan by Frederick Naumann during World War I in his 1915 publication Mitteleuropa?” see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mitteleuropa. The articles states:
    “The Mitteleuropa plan was to achieve an economic and cultural hegemony over Central Europe by the German Empire[11][12] and subsequent economic and financial exploitation[13][14] of this region combined with direct annexations,[13] settlement of German colonists, expulsion of non-Germans from annexed areas, and eventual Germanization of puppet states created as a buffer between Germany and Russia. The issue of Central Europe was taken by German thinker Friedrich Naumann in 1915 in his work Mitteleuropa.

    Mitteleuropa was to be created by establishing a series of puppet states whose political, economic and military aspects would be under the control of the German Reich.[18] The entire region was to serve as an economic backyard of Germany, whose exploitation would enable the German empire to better compete against strategic rivals like Britain, the United States and Japan.[18]

    Political, military and economic organization was to be based on German domination,[19] with commercial treaties imposed on countries like Poland and Ukraine. It was believed that the German working classes could be appeased by German politicians through the economic benefits of territorial annexation, settlement of Germans in Central and Eastern Europe and exploitation of conquered countries for the material benefit of Germany.[20] Partial realization of these plans was reflected in the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, where guarantees of economic and military domination over Ukraine by Germany were laid out.[21] . “
    [11] A history of eastern Europe: crisis and change Robert Bideleux,Ian Jeffries, page 12,Routledge 1998
    [12] The Challenge of Hegemony: Grand Strategy, Trade, and Domestic Politics Steven E. Lobell, page 52, University of Michigan Press
    [13] “War and Punishment: The Causes of War Termination and the First World War” Hein Erich Goemans, Princeton University, page 116 Press 2000
    [14\ The First World War, 1914-1918 Gerd Hardach, page 235 University of California Press 1981…
    [18] Imanuel Geiss”Tzw. polski pas graniczny 1914-1918″. Warszawa 1964
    [19 ] Barry Hayes, Bismarck and Mitteleuropa, Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 1994, p. 16
    [20] “War and Punishment: The Causes of War Termination and the First World War” Hein Erich Goemans, page 115, Princeton University Press 2000
    [21]”Coalition Warfare: An Uneasy Accord”.Roy Arnold Prete, Keith Neilson 1983 Wilfrid Laurier University Press

    This plan was further developed by Dorothy Thompson in her May 31, 1940 article in the Herald Tribune. The article stated:

    “Germany’s plan is to make a customs union of Europe, with complete financial and economic control centered in Berlin. This will create at once the largest free trade area and the largest planned economy in the world. In western Europe alone-Russia is another chapter-there unify of 400,000,000 persons, skilled, civilized, white men, with a high standard of living. To these will be addled the resources of the British, French, Dutch and Belgian empires. These will be pooled, in the name of Europa Germanica.”…

    “The Germans count upon political power following economic power, and not vice versa.”…

    “The Nazification of all countries will be accomplished by economic pressure. In all countries contacts have been established long ago with sympathetic business men and industrialists, and those who have been openly hostile will be punished by boycott. The German occupation armies.”…

    “As far as the United States is concerned, the planners of the World Germanica laugh off the idea of any armed invasion. They say that it will be completely unnecessary to take military action against the United States in order to force it to play ball with this system. They point out that there will be no other foreign market for the raw materials and agricultural products of the United States, since these can hardly be sold in the Western Hemisphere. Here, as in every other country, they have established relations with numerous industries and commercial organizations, to whom they will offer advantages in co-operation with Germany. Certain conditions will have to be met. No orders will be taken from or given by personalities unfavorably regarded by the Nazis. No advertising contracts will be placed with newspapers directed by or publishing the work of pro-Ally or anti-Nazi editors or writers.”…

    “The German planners predict a stampede of the South to collaborate with this system. This stampede will be fostered and directed by their agents.”…
    “[T]he economic penetration has already been established in all South American countries and in Mexico, and will be accompanied by political ultimatums and propaganda activities.”…

    “To accomplish all this it is necessary to complete a total war against Britain and France.”…

    “The Nazis believe in the system of hostages. They tried it first with the Jews to see whether world-Jewry would buy out its co-religionists. They thus demonstrated that the humanitarian impulses of the world are one of their own most useful weapons”…

    “They argue that the tendency in all democracies demonstrate that workers only want to eat and have work, and care nothing for national matters or for individual liberty. What remnants are left of the pre-Hitlerian epoch myths will be terrorized out of the workers by the Gestapo. “And,” they add, nothing that capitalists will not do, if profitable. Democracies have taught their people, workers or corporation chiefs to believe only money.”…

    “And, finally, only the master the Germans, will be allowed to bear arms. If, however, the United States wants to concur, all armaments be radically reduced.”

    Is the European Union (EU) is a continuation of a power structure designed to benefit German based or controlled multi-national corporations through a cartel system that was originally identified by Prussian Economist Frederick Von List then formalized with a plan by Frederick Naumann during World War I in his 1915 publication Mitteleuropa?” see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mitteleuropa. The articles states:
    “The Mitteleuropa plan was to achieve an economic and cultural hegemony over Central Europe by the German Empire[11][12] and subsequent economic and financial exploitation[13][14] of this region combined with direct annexations,[13] settlement of German colonists, expulsion of non-Germans from annexed areas, and eventual Germanization of puppet states created as a buffer between Germany and Russia. The issue of Central Europe was taken by German thinker Friedrich Naumann in 1915 in his work Mitteleuropa.

    Mitteleuropa was to be created by establishing a series of puppet states whose political, economic and military aspects would be under the control of the German Reich.[18] The entire region was to serve as an economic backyard of Germany, whose exploitation would enable the German empire to better compete against strategic rivals like Britain, the United States and Japan.[18]

    Political, military and economic organization was to be based on German domination,[19] with commercial treaties imposed on countries like Poland and Ukraine. It was believed that the German working classes could be appeased by German politicians through the economic benefits of territorial annexation, settlement of Germans in Central and Eastern Europe and exploitation of conquered countries for the material benefit of Germany.[20] Partial realization of these plans was reflected in the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, where guarantees of economic and military domination over Ukraine by Germany were laid out.[21] . “
    [11] A history of eastern Europe: crisis and change Robert Bideleux,Ian Jeffries, page 12,Routledge 1998
    [12] The Challenge of Hegemony: Grand Strategy, Trade, and Domestic Politics Steven E. Lobell, page 52, University of Michigan Press
    [13] “War and Punishment: The Causes of War Termination and the First World War” Hein Erich Goemans, Princeton University, page 116 Press 2000
    [14\ The First World War, 1914-1918 Gerd Hardach, page 235 University of California Press 1981…
    [18] Imanuel Geiss”Tzw. polski pas graniczny 1914-1918″. Warszawa 1964
    [19 ] Barry Hayes, Bismarck and Mitteleuropa, Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 1994, p. 16
    [20] “War and Punishment: The Causes of War Termination and the First World War” Hein Erich Goemans, page 115, Princeton University Press 2000
    [21]”Coalition Warfare: An Uneasy Accord”.Roy Arnold Prete, Keith Neilson 1983 Wilfrid Laurier University Press

    This plan was further developed by Dorothy Thompson in her May 31, 1940 article in the Herald Tribune. The article stated:

    “Germany’s plan is to make a customs union of Europe, with complete financial and economic control centered in Berlin. This will create at once the largest free trade area and the largest planned economy in the world. In western Europe alone-Russia is another chapter-there unify of 400,000,000 persons, skilled, civilized, white men, with a high standard of living. To these will be addled the resources of the British, French, Dutch and Belgian empires. These will be pooled, in the name of Europa Germanica.”…

    “The Germans count upon political power following economic power, and not vice versa.”…

    “The Nazification of all countries will be accomplished by economic pressure. In all countries contacts have been established long ago with sympathetic business men and industrialists, and those who have been openly hostile will be punished by boycott. The German occupation armies.”…

    “As far as the United States is concerned, the planners of the World Germanica laugh off the idea of any armed invasion. They say that it will be completely unnecessary to take military action against the United States in order to force it to play ball with this system. They point out that there will be no other foreign market for the raw materials and agricultural products of the United States, since these can hardly be sold in the Western Hemisphere. Here, as in every other country, they have established relations with numerous industries and commercial organizations, to whom they will offer advantages in co-operation with Germany. Certain conditions will have to be met. No orders will be taken from or given by personalities unfavorably regarded by the Nazis. No advertising contracts will be placed with newspapers directed by or publishing the work of pro-Ally or anti-Nazi editors or writers.”…

    “The German planners predict a stampede of the South to collaborate with this system. This stampede will be fostered and directed by their agents.”…
    “[T]he economic penetration has already been established in all South American countries and in Mexico, and will be accompanied by political ultimatums and propaganda activities.”…

    “To accomplish all this it is necessary to complete a total war against Britain and France.”…

    “The Nazis believe in the system of hostages. They tried it first with the Jews to see whether world-Jewry would buy out its co-religionists. They thus demonstrated that the humanitarian impulses of the world are one of their own most useful weapons”…

    “They argue that the tendency in all democracies demonstrate that workers only want to eat and have work, and care nothing for national matters or for individual liberty. What remnants are left of the pre-Hitlerian epoch myths will be terrorized out of the workers by the Gestapo. “And,” they add, nothing that capitalists will not do, if profitable. Democracies have taught their people, workers or corporation chiefs to believe only money.”…

    “And, finally, only the master the Germans, will be allowed to bear arms. If, however, the United States wants to concur, all armaments be radically reduced.”

    Going to current events, it is interesting that Great Britain is challenging the power structure of the European Union and is requesting substantive reform – see the article “Cameron’s EU demands: Are they enough to appease europskeptics?”

    http://m.csmonitor.com/World/Europe/2015/1110/Cameron-s-EU-demands-Are-they-enough-to-appease-euroskeptics-video?cmpid=ema:nws:Daily%2520Newsletter%2520%2811-10-2015%29&utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=20151110_Newsletter:%20Daily&utm_term=Daily

    The articles shows how British Prime Minister Cameron wanted more protection for EU members outside the Eurozone, more competition and less bureaucracy, more sovereignty for national parliaments from Brussels mandates, and exemption from the EU commitment to an “ever-closer union.” He also called for restrictions on migrants from other EU nations coming to Britain for work or welfare. The British Prime Minister’s efforts were greeted with some unfavorable commentary “front-page headline of Liberation, a leftist French daily, screamed “Cameron’s blackmail.” Not even an hour after he wrapped up his talk at the think tank Chatham House in central London, the EU was calling some of the measures “highly problematic” and even “illegal.”

    Posted by Sojourner Truth | November 30, 2015, 6:08 am

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