Cooper Agreement Greece 1940


The alternatives proposed to Athens – but perhaps to all other European countries – between exiting the euro and not keeping its election promises have been interpreted in Greece as an obligation to sacrifice national sovereignty under pressure from Europe. The aggressive rhetoric of the Athens platform and some extremely harsh tones of the Eurogroup`s Greek interlocutors have made the abandonment of national prerogatives even more painful – a consequence of the high level of debt and not of the European straitjacket. Ultimately, this tension will cast a long shadow over the implementation of the agreements. Even if a majority of Greeks preferred to abandon the euro rather than accept agreements that they rightly consider unfair, the assertion of a right to protect Greek democracy from the intrusion of European technocracy is debatable. Finally, Athens` position is based on Syriza`s domestic election promise to charge other European citizens to facilitate financial conditions in Greece. The democratic value of such a promise, made unilaterally without consultation with the European interlocutors who would pay the costs, is very controversial. The bitter struggle between Brussels and Athens actually ended ambiguously. The Greek government had to swallow specific commitments dictated by the partners, but from the beginning it tried to sell the deal as a victory at home. The political contradiction between international engagement and national consensus was immediately evident and will worsen in the coming months if words are followed by parliamentary decisions. The Greek state`s financial problems remain unchanged and, under this pressure, the Athens Parliament must translate the agreed reforms into law by the end of April. If the new Greek government respects the Brussels agreement, the internal cohesion of the ruling coalition will be severely compromised and its political aspirations weakened. If the government instead breaks the agreements, the European institutions will denounce Athens as an unreliable partner, push back the financial lifelines and eventually expel the country out of the eurozone. Tsipras must dispel the political contradiction he faces: he won the elections by promising to review the country`s existing agreements with the European institutions.

In the midst of a fierce confrontation with Europe, Tsipras reaffirmed last Tuesday that his government intends to keep these electoral promises. The Greek Parliament has been asked to vote on reform measures that deviate from past agreements with the troika. The contrast with the conditions imposed by other European governments through the Eurogroup is considerable. Athens was asked to maintain the reforms; accept new measures, even if they do not affect the deficit; ensure that it repays its debts; cooperate with the troika; and to implement the agreed agenda. Like so many public actions that we condemn today, not so long ago, ethnic cleansing was seen as a legitimate instrument of foreign policy. .