Response to “Greece’s perpetual crisis” (The New Times, December 23)



RE : “Greece’s perpetual crisis” (The New Times, December 23).

You don’t cure a man suffering from hunger—which is what ails the Greek economy and its people—by prescribing and imposing a strict starvation regime accompanied by medieval bleeding as the troika of the European Union, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund have done.

The Troika’s Great Greek Rescue program is nothing more than cover for bailing out the country’s major western creditors—mainly German and French banks and other financial institutions—that recklessly lent money to Greece fully aware of that country’s limited capacity to pay it back and which would themselves collapse into bankruptcy were the Troika’s game of pretend-at-rescuing-Greece not been used to repay them the money they had originally lent Athens (siphoned off by that country’s extremely corrupt political class and shipping magnates), while saddling the Greek people with additional unpayable debt.

Talk about odious debt; there couldn’t be a more stark illustration of that concept than what is happening to the Greek people, with the concord of their always venal or cowardly political class. And, some of us used to think that the structural adjustment programs (SAPs), or their extended versions (ESAPs), which ravaged Third World economies, and whose painful effects are still felt to this day, were reserved only for non-EU countries.

Apparently, they are actually equal-opportunity snake-oil medicine for all poor countries, including those whom we used to think of as members of an exclusive club of mostly rich countries comprising the center of the global economy.

Mwene Kalinda