Running out of schemes to meet their massive debt repayment deadlines (short of implementing market reforms), Greece has decided to play the Nazi card.
In an obvious attempt to dig itself out of its deep debt hole, Greece is demanding €279 billion in World War II reparations for suffering and occupation from Germany.
“We will push for this as much as we can,” Costas Isychos, Greece’s deputy defense minister, said, describing the war reparations as “an open wound” for a country that had suffered one of the most brutal occupations under Hitler.
“We have to close this wound. It is not related, whatsoever, to Greek debt or any policies connected to the memoranda,” he said, referring to the deeply unpopular bailout accords. “They are two very different issues. The left has always been sensitive to this issue.”
While Greece continues to deny the Nazi reparations are linked to the country’s current economic plight and the tough austerity measures Berlin has pressed for in exchange for international aid, the timing is awfully convenient… Just days before Athens is scheduled to make a roughly $487 million payment on a loan from the International Monetary Fund, the cash-strapped country concluded that Berlin owes them $302 billion – a sum bigger than the $260 billion bailout Greece received from the European Union and IMF in 2010.
The German government says the issue was resolved legally years ago and bringing it up now is a “dumb” attempt to distract attention from Greece’s looming credit crunch. Berlin paid 115m Deutschmarks to Athens in 1960 in compensation but now Greece says it did not cover payments for damaged infrastructure, war crimes or the billions of dollars that the Bank of Greece was forced to lend to the enemy.
Good one Greece. What could possibly go wrong with a European nation demanding that Germany pay war reparations for a previous world war?