There doesn’t seem to be much union in the European Union. Greek politicians are wetting their pants that Germany isn’t bending over fast enough to provide bailout money, so they pulled out the Nazi card. I’m sure the Germans raped Greece during World War II, but that does not explain why German taxpayers are responsible for the fiscal incontinence of Greek politicians 60 years later. The Guardian reports:
Tens of thousands of striking Greek workers took to the streets today, some throwing stones at police, in a defiant show of protest against austerity measures aimed at averting the debt-plagued country’s economic collapse. Riot police responded with teargas when, in sporadic bursts, masked youths charged them in Athens city centre. The violence coincided with a general strike that shut down public services and closed off Greece to the outside world. For trade unions the mass show of force was a warning shot to a government struggling to satisfy its eurozone partners with policies deemed vital for the nation’s fiscal health while appeasing angry workers at home. …The protests came against a backdrop of mounting Greek hostility towards the EU, with particular venom reserved for Germany, which has pressed for harder measures to be forced on Athens. Greece’s political elite has been outraged and hurt by hard-hitting German media coverage of the debt crisis. The cover of a German magazine, Focus, which showed the Venus de Milo making a less than complimentary finger gesture under the headline “Swindlers in the eurozone” has triggered widespread fury. In an extraordinary tirade, the deputy prime minister, Theodore Pangalos, said Germany had no right to judge Greek finances after wreaking havoc on the economy during the four years that the country was under Nazi occupation in the second world war. Worse still, he said, Germany had failed to make adequate compensation. …Berlin hit back with a tart reminder that Greece had received 115m deutschmarks in compensation by 1960. “I must reject these accusations,” said Andreas Peschke, a spokesman at the German foreign ministry. Greece, he said, had also received around €33bn in aid from Germany “both bilaterally and in the context of the EU”.