(Image from MYSA)
I’m not an economist.
So to be quite frank, I shouldn’t be talking about the Greek Debit Crisis in depth and about the impact it will have on the global economy, particularly here in Europe. But I am a human rights defender and I am as well, by profession and training, a development and foreign policy specialist. And if there is one thing I can say about this crisis is that it spells doom for not just Greece, but the European Union as a whole, should Greece exit from the Eurozone.
The main ingredients of turmoil are stewing in this caldron of Greek mess; a racist political party (aka Golden Dawn) has gained dominance in the political arena. Like the Germans to the Jewish community pre-WWII, immigrants and foreigners are seen as the blame for economic woes and job loss in Greece, spreading xenophobia via hate crimes conducted by Golden Dawn supported police officers.
The Greek people are being marginalised by both an inadequate government, riddled with corruption and self-interest, and by the international community, as lame duck in the global arena.
I’ve been to Greece. I have friends who are Greek, both in and out of the country. I say this because those who’ve truly been to Greece (beyond Mykonos, the tourist sites in Athens and Santorini) know for a fact that Greeks are an incredibly hardworking people. Proud of their heritage and the cultural contribution it has provided to modern civilisation, they are a passionate people whom I at times find far more passionate and enthusiastic for life than my own Italian compatriots. Like their philosophical ancestors before them (Plato, Aristotle, Socrates, etc.), their passion for life gives them an amazing authority over life’s lessons and insights. You could learn more about life by sitting at a table and sharing a meal with Greeks for one lunch or dinner than you could in your entire lifetime.
The comments that Greeks are lazy and overindulgent shows a complete and utter lack of knowledge for their love and appreciation of life.
If Greece were to exit from the Eurozone, I predict internal civil rife would follow suite. People will take to the streets in violent protest – looting and wreaking havoc in the same manner that people took to the streets in Argentina in the early 2000’s at the collapse of its economy. Greeks will flood into neighbouring EU countries to escape the calamity for despite their Euro exit, a member of the EU the country shall continue to remain. A brain drain like never before will hit Greece and EU countries will have to deal with the high influx of Greek migrants at their borders – not very appealing for the UK government which already complains of the current influx of EU migrants to the country. Hospitals will be bare of skilled doctors and universities denied of their brightest students as they rush out in search of a better life and a future – albeit always with a heavy heart for remember, Greeks are proud of Greece.
As with Syria, Greece will experience a lost generation of youths that are robbed of their future and injected with pessimism and bleak opportunities at home.
There will be no choice but to declare a state of emergency in Greece.
The Euro crises has made Europe forget about the importance of unity. Greece was never able to pay its debits – it was obvious from the get-go when the EU and IMF continued to loan money, dragging the country into a downward spiral of financial failure. Instead of plaguing it with more bills than it could handle, the Troika should’ve offered to clear half of the Greek debits but be firm with the only condition being complete restructuring of Greek economic policy, proposing a complete cabinet change that wipes away the current corrupt scheme, and provides a new outward plan to invigorate the Greek economy by exporting and creating sustainable partnerships that would ensure long-term investment for the country.
That should have been done instead of this.
You can’t help someone with aid – you help them by working together to solve the problem and seek resolutions with the initiative coming from the person with problems. If the person with issues doesn’t want to be helped, then we can lay blame on them. Instead, this crises has resulted in a clash of egos (apparent with Prime Minister Tispiras’ new proposal for a referendum this week and the EU’s “tough luck, you-won’t-screw-us-over” attitude).
But what do I know? In the end, I’m not an economist.
But from what I do know is that if GRExit happens, we can only brace ourselves for the worst.
I'm not the only one who believe disaster will ensue should Greece leave the Eurozone. Foreign Policy take a more academic look into the possibilities and the implications the exit could have on the state of Greece and the global economy.