European Union - The Trawler.org
Dyer is responding to German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s assertion that “if the Euro collapses, Europe collapses.” He points out, however, that the EU functioned very well for 40 years without a common currency. Attempts to maintain the Euro, in fact, have led to depression era levels of unemployment and a sharp decline in incomes for the population of Greece. In the recent election, Greek political parties that agreed to the austerity measures that are a condition of continuing EU financial support were abandoned by voters. Instead, people voted for parties on the extreme left and extreme right, promising further political instability. Dyer compares the situation of Greece to Argentina’s default in 2001. He notes that Greece already is facing conditions similar to Argentina’s immediately following its default, yet, unlike the South American nation, it has no prospect of improving conditions. Argentina, after a period of extreme economic contraction and high unemployment, was able to rebound without an onerous level of national debt. As a result, its economy has grown by 8 percent per year for the past nine years. Dyer predicts that Greece, Italy, and Spain will need to reintroduce national currencies to handle their economic crises. The Euro may then become the common currency only of the northern nations. This, however, does not necessarily mean the end of the EU. (link to article)
L. Offeddu writes for Il Corriere della Sera about the case of Tymoshenko that is creating tension just a few weeks before the European football Championship of 2012.
Yulia Tymoshenko was the Prime Minister of Ukraine in 2005 and from 2007 to 2010, and the protagonist of the Orange Revolution that showed a lot of claims for more democracy in the country. She was the Prime Minister when the organization of the European Football Championship was awarded by Ukraine (and Poland). However, today we find a country which is far from the period of the Orange Revolution: the hopes that were generated were not realized. The actual President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych, who defeated Tymoshenko during the elections of 2010, has to deal with a lot of problems during these days. Cases of corruption and abuse of office opened against Tymoshenko in 2010 and she was subsequently arrested; photos which show the suffering and bruises she acquired from prison are now circulating.
Offeddu stresses that many European leaders have expressed their concern of the situation. Governments of Austria and Belgium have decided to boycott Euro 2012. The German Chancellor Angela Merkel has stated she will take a decision at the last moment, and other representatives have shown concern.
Obviously we know that it ia not the first time that sports and politics have mixed. Yanukovych denounces “the climate of the Cold War” but there is no need to go back that far: still today many people wonder about the before and the after of Beijing 2008. A lot of promises on human rights have remained just promises.