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Euro crisis sparks anti-German sentiments
Photo: DPA

Euro crisis sparks anti-German sentiments

Published: 26 Mar 2013 16:11 GMT+01:00
Updated: 26 Mar 2013 16:11 GMT+01:00

The tough terms of the bailout hammered out early on Monday bear a distinct German signature, which Chancellor Angela Merkel hailed as a "fair" deal that held those responsible for the crisis to account. But commentators fretted Tuesday that the political toll of the brutal negotiations was still being counted.

"The battle to save Cyprus inflicted deep wounds on the eurozone," the influential news weekly Der Spiegel said on its website. "The price of rescue is high: Germany is again the whipping boy," it said, citing a pattern of recriminations seen in Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Greece and Cyprus as the debt turmoil has whipsawed through Europe.

Each time a eurozone country has sought help from international creditors, Germany as Europe's top economy and effective paymaster has come to the rescue, but prescribed bitter pills as part of the treatment.

In the case of stricken Cyprus, a €10-billion lifeline came at the price of depositors in the two biggest banks – many of them Russian – paying huge levies on deposits over €100,000 ($130,000). The deal also effectively shuts down the island's second-largest lender as part of an overhaul of what German politicians, among others, called a "casino" financial sector.

That plan came after massive uproar over a preliminary agreement a week earlier which would have taken the axe to the savings of much smaller account-holders that was widely seen as German-engineered, though hotly denied by Berlin. It prompted irate demonstrators to take to the streets of the Cypriot capital Nicosia with signs showing Merkel with a Hitler moustache and hundreds

of Twitter users to equate today's Germans with the Nazis.

Respected Spanish daily El Pais went as far as to publish an editorial Sunday stating that Merkel "like Hitler, has declared war on the rest of the continent." It later withdrew the column amid a furious outcry over the inappropriate Nazi comparison.

There are growing signs that Germany, whose taxpayers foot the bulk of the bailout bills, is growing testy over the mudslinging.

"It's always the Germans' fault!" the leading tabloid daily Bild said last week. "Yet of all people, we Germans are the target of criticism, even outright hatred, in crisis-plagued countries."

But the Munich-based daily Süddeutsche Zeitung warned on Tuesday that Germany was walking a fine line politically.

"Careful, careful: Nobody should cave to the populist reflex to apply the same recipe in Cyprus elsewhere, such as in Spain. Germany certainly profits because without the currency union it would slide into crisis. Secondly, if the country continues to be so coldhearted it will pay an immeasurable political price."

German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle lamented Monday that the "complex negotiations (over Cyprus) were accompanied by shrill slogans in the public arena and the media that were often unjust and hurtful."

Wolfgang Schäuble, Germany's powerful finance minister, offered a bit of schoolyard psychology as an explanation for the Germans being seen as the "bad guys."

"It's like in school when you get better grades and those having a harder time get a little jealous," he told public television late Monday with a nod to Germany's relative economic strength.

Merkel, who is vying for a third term in September elections, has tried to maintain an above-the-fray stance, calling the sniping the price of power. Senior German officials note that the United States also garners hatred for its huge global footprint.

The opposition has struggled to find a line of attack against her in the crisis, with her main challenger Peer Steinbrück this week zeroing in on the old agreement for Cyprus that had already been jettisoned.

Yet commentators note that Merkel, who routinely breaks popularity records thanks to her stout defence of German interests, had also been guilty of stirring the pot on occasion.

At the height of the Greek misery, Merkel chided southern Europeans for allegedly retiring at a younger average age than Germans while their governments were seeking a handout.

AFP/DPA/The Local/mry

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

17:26 March 26, 2013 by wethepeople2012
Although I am against the banks stealing money from their depositors, called (bail in), I am more against æquot;LL" taxpayers (bailing out), the banks. At least in the (bail in) plan...only those that invested in those banks are affected. Which would in the future, more directly affect those banks since only "their" shareholders and depositors are affected and not æquot;LL" taxpayers are stuck with the burdon of bailing out the banks. Those affected in the (bail in) plan, will have to more carefully plan where they put their money since it will be they that will pay the price and not everyone else!
17:29 March 26, 2013 by manosd73
One small correction....

WE DO NOT HATE GERMANY!!

WE DO NOT HATE THE GERMAN PEOPLE!!

But you Germans seem to forget that before the "Nazi German" was the "Lazy Greek"

It was the German Government that started the game of stereotypes...and im sorry to say that,but now, you reap what you sow...
17:42 March 26, 2013 by sonriete
Not everyone agrees with Merkel that the people who deposit money in a bank are "responsible" for a banks failure, In this case the crisis did not originate with offshore capital, but rather with the troika demanding large " haircuts" on Greek government sovereign bonds on the Greek bailout last year. The Cypriot banks invested in those bonds because they reasonably thought there was solidarity in the EU, especially since all the EU politicians (including German ones) said it was so over and over again. The haircut forced on investors in Greek sovereign bonds surprised a lot of sophisticated finance people, if anything the Russians can be blamed somewhat for not seeing handwriting on the wall after that happened. There is no solidarity in the EU, it is every man for himself, and God against all.
19:14 March 26, 2013 by Kennneth Ingle
When sonrite writes : "Not everyone agrees with Merkel that the people who deposit money in a bank are responsible for a banks failure", this is bang on the spot. Nevertheless the Nazi insults are completely out of place. It is Merkel and Co., who are responsible for policies, which for years now have cost the German taxpayers millions of Euros, in the vain attempt to buy the friendship of other nations.

To say that there is no solidarity in the EU, it is every man for himself, is however not quite true. Many of us have been working for years in the hope of real unification. It is the national governments, not the normal people, who have ruined the good idea of a Europe living in peace and co-operation to the benefit of all.

Introducing a common currency, before a harmony of laws, taxes and social insurance had been agreed to among member states, was one of the greatest economic blunders ever to have been made since 1945. However, the Euro is not Europe, we could all do quite well, if not better, without it.

Ordinary Germans have gained nothing by its introduction! Apart from the civil servants, who have the advantage of their own system of pensions, retired workers have lost more than a fifth of their purchase power during the last 10 years.

The demands for Germany to pay for countries, which have done nothing to sustain the value of the Euro, is therefore not only unfair, it is ridiculous. One country cannot pay for everybody else, nobody was forced to live beyond their means. The only blame Germany has, was to introduce the Euro before the conditions for it had been efficiently created.
20:21 March 26, 2013 by antistar
Depositors may not be responsible for the failure of a bank, but they do take risks. The interest rates on Cypriot bank accounts were twice what German banks were paying in order to encourage people to deposit in risky banks. If the Cypriot banks weren't being saved these investors, who knew the risks, would have lost all their money, not just 40%. There are no guarantees for deposits over 100k in the EU, so it would just be gone.
21:44 March 26, 2013 by sonriete
We are always being told the Russians deposited money in Cyprus for the very high interest, but their rates were really quite low by worldwide and historical European standards, averaging 4%. I get higher dividends on stocks I own in blue chip American companies. Yes it is true that is twice what you get in Germany, but after inflation the German rates are actually negative, (you are paying the bank to hold your money for them) and the Cypriot rate nets out to barely more than 1% . Considering the German banks aren't in the greatest shape either, I wonder why anyone would keep large sums in euro zone banks at this point.
22:17 March 26, 2013 by ChrisRea
@ sonriete

Why are you comparing apples and oranges (bank deposits and stocks)? And from stocks you pick only the winning ones, the blue chips.
22:30 March 26, 2013 by jg.
@sonriete Well said - for both your comments.

A precedent has been set in Cyprus. Individuals and companies with substantial bank deposits in all EZ countries where banks are in difficulties must assume that their money is at risk. This is not limited to Spain, Italy and other PIIGS. French banks have substantial exposure to Greek sovereign debt and the balance sheets of some German banks aren't that rosy. It will be interesting to see how much money leaves Cyprus when account holders are finally allowed access to their remaining cash. It will also be interesting to see capital flows for all EZ countries at the end of this quarter.
22:37 March 26, 2013 by sonriete
My point is the safest blue chip stocks can pay out over 5% dividends, one would expect them to pay less than deposits in "risky" banks. The Cypriot interest rates of 4% , 1% after inflation are peanuts compared to other solid investment vehicles. people invested there in the belief that all those statements by Draghi et all this past year had meaning, I guess they were fools for believing.

Now they say the Cypriot banking sector was 'bloated and unsustainable" at 8 times the countries GDP and that this was a terrible flaw. Well, lets look right next door, the Luxembourg banking sector is equal to 20 times their GDP ! And as we all know the vast majority of it is also overseas money, in Cyprus it was Russian money, in Luxemburg it is overwhelmingly German money. Wonder what Merkel and Schauble will do if there is a run on Luxembourg banks? And whether they will say the sector there is " bloated and unsustainable"
00:25 March 27, 2013 by Navigator_B
Merkel was chancellor for the past eight years while it was obvious that the problems in Cyprus and other Eurozone countries were getting out of control. Germans should remember that before they put all the blame for the Euro crisis on the other countries. If they think she has the right to impose widespread austerity to solve the crisis now, they should admit that she must take responsibility for allowing the crisis to happen in the first place.

Wolgang Shaüble is probably the best example of the hypocrisy and self-rightiousness of the German government. It's bad enough that he's been saying that the blame lies entirely with counties like Cyprus and Greece and had nothing to do with Germany's negligence. Now he's even lecturing them about German superiority with its "better grades" as quoted in the article above. It's no wonder that the German government is hated so much in those countries.      
00:42 March 27, 2013 by antistar
We are always being told the Russians deposited money in Cyprus for the very high interest, but their rates were really quite low by worldwide and his…
Bloomberg calculated that if you put your money in a Cypriot bank account after the crash in 2008 you would have earned 12% interest OVER AND ABOVE what you would have earned in a similar German account. With the original rescue deal, depositors putting their money into a doomed bank after the crash would have still made a profit compared to other Eurozone members, and those tax payers would have to pay these risk taking depositors their profits.

Comparing stocks isn't sensible: Compare like for like. Stocks over the same period paid good interest - but it would have been impossible to know that at the time the investment was made! You could have made a profit, you could have lost the lot. Banks guarantee a rate of interest. The two things are not the same.

German, French, or other Eurozone deposit accounts, those you can compare. These investors put their money into the Cypriot bank deposits because they paid a good rate of interest, and they thought it was a safer, more profitable bet than stocks or other Euro bank accounts. They probably assumed that Eurozone tax payers like me and you would pay to save their money after they'd earned a nice profit at our expense.
02:48 March 27, 2013 by sonriete
It is not that they "assumed" there would be unlimited euro solidarity, it is that they were PROMISED there would be. All of the previous bailouts that involved insolvent banks, Ireland and Spain in particular did not involve depositors losing a cent. It is reasonable that depositors in euro zone banks would believe the precedent would be respected, particularly since Draghi and all the Brussels crowd swore up and down that it would, over and over. People are being punished because they believed the lies of EU officials, how sad. All I can say is they got away with it this time, but what happens next? They have created circumstances where it is inevitable that huge sums will be leaving banks in several large euro countries that were barely hanging on as it was.

By the way, since the German accounts pay negative interest, it is nearly impossible not to beat their returns, one pays German banks for the priveledge of being their depositor but if you compare to what you would have gotten in Beirut 120km away from Limassol, you would have double the return the Cypriots offer and no one would be seizing your money, yes your money is safer in Lebanon than in the Euro zone!
09:58 March 27, 2013 by Firmino
lolz.... Here we go again..... O.o
10:01 March 27, 2013 by vogel
It is very easy to blame "Angie" or the germans, BUT first the "lazy people" should go to work (and I mean real work), make their countries prosperous and forget the conspiracy theory.
10:21 March 27, 2013 by sonriete
^^^ They can't go to work because there are no jobs and no credit to start or expand businesses, they are stuck and everything will just get worse and worse. Welcome to the EU.
10:44 March 27, 2013 by vogel
aaahhhh...and by the way, I'm not german.

I don't speak about this moment (of course now it's pretty tough), but what about the previous years when the credits were available?

I don't throw the rock because I'm also from East-Europe, but I like the german working&living style. They built what they have through hard work...
13:44 March 27, 2013 by antistar
It is not that they "assumed" there would be unlimited euro solidarity, it is that they were PROMISED there would be.
Can you show me where anyone promised that depositors over 100k euros would never lose a penny when Banks collapsed (and were rescued)?
By the way, since the German accounts pay negative interest, it is nearly impossible not to beat their returns, one pays German banks for the priveled…
Again, you are not comparing like for like. There is more risk putting deposits in a Lebanese bank account because:

a. The government is unstable - it can and has fallen into civil war in recent memory.

b. The currency is unstable - it could collapse and you will lose lots of money. When I was living in Hungary the currency collapsed even though they were paying me 11% interest. In fact they paid that much to keep money in and prevent the currency collapsing further.

The Cypriot banks were paying more because that's the only way they could get people to deposit money with them when they were a relatively risky investment compared to other Eurozone banks. The depositors took the interest and assumed European tax payers to pick up the bill when things went wrong. That didn't happen, and I can't say I'm shedding tears that my taxes aren't bailing them out.

I put my savings in German and British accounts - they pay less interest but they are much safer. If I put my money in stocks and the companies I invested in went broke like the Cypriot banks, should I expect taxpayers to pay me the money I lost?
17:04 March 27, 2013 by sonriete
^^^ I think you missed my point in bringing up Lebanon. Yes, this is a small country with a totally oversized banking sector, yes they have been plagued by on and off civil war for the last 40 years, yes they have car bombing in the streets, yes there are proxy wars being fought on their territory between Israel and Iran. Yes their politics are highly unstable, weak governments falling suddenly and then taking months to regroup.

But that was exactly my point, in comparing Lebanon to Cyprus, which is in the EU with all its supposed protections, it is Cypriot accounts that are raided by the government, essentially on the orders of the troika, not the Lebanese ones, I was pointing out the irony in this, not comparing Lebanon to Germany but rather to Cyprus. What have we come to when money is safer in Lebanon than in the EU?

I agree there is nothing in any EU treaty guaranteeing your savings won't be seized, people relied on precedent and public statements from officials, and of course the fact that they voted just last June to set up the multi billion fund to directly re capitalize banks without the monies being added to the sovereign debt of the host country, if this were not the perfect example of where that fund could be deployed, what is? The trouble started with the troika bailout of Greece, where they forced a dramatic devaluation of sovereign bonds of an EU member state.
20:57 March 27, 2013 by antistar
People relied on precedent you say? So you mean they *assumed* that the taxpayer would protect their profits if the risky high-interest paying banks collapsed. So I pay high taxes while earning less money in safe British and German banks, while Russians and other tax evaders make a profit and you think my high taxes should pay for their losses?

What's your argument for why I should have to pay these people? Should we also compensate people when a currency crashes or stock markets go bust?

I can see the reasoning behind protecting small savers (sub 100k) on an ethical and rational level. You don't want bank runs like the 1930s. But if you put lots of money in a bank on the assumption that it's low tax/high interest profits will be protected by taxpayers like you and me, then you should sometimes have to pay the price. That's what risk is all about.

Do you really think money is safer in Lebanon than in Germany? I can only think you don't understand risk, and base it purely on short-term historical results, rather than future possibilities. You seem to think stocks are a safe bet because they have recently been on the up. Just because Lebanon has been safe so far doesn't mean it always will be. I certainly wouldn't put money there unless there was a good rate of interest to make the risk worth it.

And how is it "raiding" these deposits, when the money is being used to prevent the bank from collapsing and thus costing these people ALL of their money? That's like saying to someone who spends his money to prevent your house from being repossessed for "stealing" money from you when he asks you to put up half the funds.
22:07 March 27, 2013 by sonriete
Well yes, people did rely on precedent, but also strong statements made by EU politicians that this would never happen, again I say these Russians biggest mistake was trusting the word of the EU politicians, if it were me, I would have pulled my money from there as soon as the Greek sovereign bond haircut was announced.

Personally I invest similarly to how you do, I have money in the UK and in the US. I only keep a checking account in euro's to pay my day to day bills. Not sure I agree that German banks are as strong as you seem to think.

I think there is a very long term track record in Lebanon as an off shore money center, going back to the 1960's, I see the weakness in German banks as their exposure to the euro, Deutsche is up to its eyeballs with Italian debt, I would not be comfortable with that at all.
14:06 March 28, 2013 by antistar
Again: Where are these "strong" statements about protecting deposits over 100k?

I agree that smaller deposits should have been protected, and now they have, but a guarantee of protection is only as strong as the government that backs it. With Cyprus you would have been a fool to think they could protect deposits. With Germany, UK and US I'd be pretty confident my deposits are safe.

It was up to the Cypriots whether they protected those sub 100k deposits, and they decided to make them pay in order to protect the richer investors. Thankfully their parliament voted that down. I'm not sure why the EU is to blame for that.
16:34 March 28, 2013 by Andreas77
I am LAUGHING at Frankfurter Allgemeine said. ¦quot;Because Germany¦#39;s economy is so strong and because the distance between it and its partners is growing, so is the jealousy.¦quot;LOL - I am Greek Cypriot and I have lived both in germany and the US of A. Cypriots are usually NOT jealous of other countries but IF there is ONE country they area bit jealous of, that is America! Beautiful country, well organized, nice people, diverse, and cool. Not too many sketchy issues and past like the germans. I can assure you that NO ONE is jealous of Germany. I mean, why would anyone like the gray streets of berlin, looking at scary faces like Schäuble (who, you have to admit, looks schockingly identical to Gollum from the Lord of the Rings) and eating sausages at 7pm? Yiaiiks! If we could pick a country to mess us up, we would IN A HEART BEAT prefer to have Obama do it in a suave way or a tall, blond sun-burned cowboy take our gas reserves. Not Gollum! Wouldn't you? Jealous of Germany... LOL.

(P.S. I hope my comment does not get moderated because I am Cypriot bashing Germany. By publishing my comment The Local will show that it allows balanced opinions to the comments bashing the Greek lazies etc. BTW, it is a bit sad that no one recognizes that Cyprus has managed to survive so many years of oppression, wars etc given its size and the non-existent industry. Really, people, we are VERY small with NO political influence. And Cypriots are really very different from the Greeks in Greece. But you wouldn't care. So I stop here.).
16:48 March 28, 2013 by alf2
Socialists eventually run out of other people's money - Margret Thatcher.
22:08 March 28, 2013 by jack_kerouac
Alf2 said it all with the Margaret Thatcher quote, and it touches the essence of the problem here. It is aso ironic that they are protesting the very people who are footing their bail out bill (German citizens) - how disrespectful and ignorant. Why don't the people of Cyprus and Greece protest their own irresponsible, corrupt governments for their country's problems? It is them, after all, who are ultimately responsible - the Germans are the only one's actually helping! Unbelievable.
23:36 March 28, 2013 by JDee
""It's like in school when you get better grades and those having a harder time get a little jealous," he told public television late Monday with a nod to Germany's relative economic strength.

arrogant, conceited, naieve and insensitive, just like the good old days!
01:00 March 29, 2013 by lenny van
2 queations. Is pot better if it is boiled and why does Mrs. Merkel get to stir it?
02:46 March 29, 2013 by savethedustbunnies
Andreas77 - Love the Gollum comparision! I admit that I am touched that you would prefer us Americans to mess you up - we've got a great knack for it, at least that's what the rest of the world tells us! For the record, I'd choose the tall, blond sun-burned cowboy (preferrably Texan) over Obama though.

To the average German citizen:

You're d*mned if you do and d*mned if you don't. Welcome to the club!

From an average American citizen
08:57 March 29, 2013 by ovalle3.14
The EU is a funny thing. Your country messes up and yet someone offers to clean whatever mess you did... and you still get angry at them?

Some people have been used to confort for way too long...
20:20 March 29, 2013 by sonriete
The only crime of the Cypriot banks is that they believed the lies of the Eurocrats, about solidarity and that sovereign EU country bonds would always be protected. They invested in those and we now have all this.
14:58 March 30, 2013 by antistar
Again: Where are these statements, or "lies" as you call them?

Greek debt was part of the problem, other massively important factors:

Firstly, Cypriot banks got greedy and took on deposits totalling over 700% of Cypriot GDP. That's unbelievably bad management from the banks and the government. In contrast US banks have deposits that total less than the country's GDP.

Secondly the government didn't have enough reserve cash to cover the debts the banks ran up.

The fact that they invested heavily in Greek bonds was a mistake that the banks made, not the EU. The fact that those bonds failed is the fault of the corrupt, poorly managed Greek government, no the EU. These people in the Cypriot banks and government are not robots - they are able to make their own choices and must take responsibility for them.
22:03 March 30, 2013 by wxman
Hey Germany, welcome to the same ingratitude we've experienced for the last 65 years! Welcome to the party.
08:28 March 31, 2013 by ChrisRea
Funny how sonriete forgets to back up his/her statements when asked to. Saying the same thing twice does not make it true.
08:46 March 31, 2013 by Wolfgang Fritz
Who would be jealous of some one who benefits from an others misfortune with callous disregard, This is not the new Germany.

Misleading the public only supports failure and isolation again.

.
21:00 April 1, 2013 by sonriete
"The ECB stands ready to do whatever it takes to preserve the euro" Mario Draghi, London, 25/07/2012
14:22 April 2, 2013 by Phelps
From today's Guardian:

"The great historical irony is that Greece was among the countries that signed the 1953 Agreement on German External Debts, which erased Germany's debt in order to prevent a repeat of Versailles.

In other words, barely a decade after Greece was annihilated by the Nazis (losing its entire economy as well as a million people from war and starvation), the Greeks found it in themselves to forget and forgive, so that Europe could hope for a better future.

I think our sins (i.e. a very badly managed public sector and a broken tax collection system) pale in comparison, so I do hope that Germany also finds it in itself to act in a similar manner, so that we can all have a chance to move on and build a better Europe.'
15:36 April 2, 2013 by sonriete
@Phelps,

Keep dreaming.
16:41 April 2, 2013 by raandy
Cyprus is not the only country where its banking system is much larger than its economy.

This should be a wake up call for Luxembourg and Malto both of which have banking systems much larger than their respective economies.

Luxembourg's banking system is a shocking 22% higher than its economy where Malta is eight times.Granted the IMF believes they are healthier than Cyprus but they have raised concerns about the countries ability to monitor them. The IMF is aware that should they run into trouble a bailout from the EU would be necessary.
22:00 April 2, 2013 by Leo Strauss
For all of you voyeurs and purveyors of pessimism porn out there during this time of (pre-programmed) crisis, here are some beautiful photos of our Angie gracing the island of Cypress with her beauty:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/expd/8607443240/

und noch wieder...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/expd/8610273495/

Enjoy!
22:50 April 2, 2013 by ChrisRea
@ sonriete

"solidarity and that sovereign EU country bonds would always be protected." is something different than "The ECB stands ready to do whatever it takes to preserve the euro". The markets has shown that the decision in the Cyprus case was correct, so the Euro was successfully preserved. So again, where are the lies you pretend you heard?
23:11 April 2, 2013 by Beachrider
Conventional wisdom is that the German PM underestimated the need for pumping-up the EU economies to help with the debt issue.

I get it that she disagrees, but that doesn't address the empirical evidence that pumping-up the economies needs to accompany more sound fiscal decision making.
23:53 April 2, 2013 by Leo Strauss
The main thing to take away from the financial crisis in Cypress is that the 'bail in' option is the template that will be used in the future to deal with the crises in lands like Italy and Spain. This was publicly admitted by the Dutch Finance Minister, who has since retracted this statement under pressure (Shhhhh, keep it down, buddy, Mr. Rothschild is on line one!). The banksters are simply going to steal the depositors money- Cypress was only the Beta Test. This is not just going to happen in the EU, but also in countries like Canada, so don't get all hung up on the Germans because 'the Germans' are simply the goats here. Last week it was revealed that the Harper government's 2013 budget shall institutionalize the 'bail in' option for troubled Canadian banks deemed too big to fail. Oh, Canada! My point is that this is not the Germans but rather the international banksters who are behind this swindle of global proportions- so don't be drawn into their psyop of nation vs nation (although as an aside, you could make the case for Harper being a Nazi if you like, but that is a tale for another time).
00:12 April 3, 2013 by sonriete
@Leo Strauss, very well put.

@ChrisRea, I don't know how to answer this, if you are serious in saying you are unaware that the people have been deliberately misled over and over you cannot be following the news at all. Even in these past few weeks, the constant statements put out that Cyprus is "unique" and this template will not be used again, when the Dutch finance minister slipped up and let the cat out of the bag, all the admonitions from all of the other leaders to walk back his true statements, I am not a journalist and don't have time to cite references for you, but I will say, read any serious newspaper, or better yet a few of them, it's all there.
08:02 April 3, 2013 by ChrisRea
@ sonriete

My bet is that I read at least as many "serious" newspapers as you, and I did not find the "lies" you cite. My guess is that you misread the statements made. Cyprus is most probably unique, as the idea is to introduce clear rules of how the bank investors and depositors will contribute to bailing out the bank. I expect also a rule limiting the exposure of the banks (for example, in relation to the national GDP). So Cyprus would be the prototype that leads to establishing sound(er) financial rules in the EU. There will be resemblances of the measures taken for Cyprus, but I am sure that they will still be different. So, again, who mislead who? And what was the relevance of your post #34?
14:01 April 3, 2013 by sonriete
@ChrisRea

You might take a frest look at Jean-Claude Juncker's interview in Spiegel of May 2011, in which the then head of the euro group admits and even boasts of how he frequently lies and lies by omission and in other was deceives in his public statements, in order to "protect" the euro currency.
22:26 April 3, 2013 by ChrisRea
@ sonriete

I read the interview. The big "lie" was that he kept secret the meeting of the finance ministers for two days, until the conclusion could be presented, so that the market would not panic. Indeed, shame on him. It is also clear that this led to the current crisis in Cyprus.

I am still curious: what was the relevance of your post #34?
02:06 April 4, 2013 by sonriete
@Chris Rea,

You demand proof these people are liars, post #34 is proof. The reason Mr. Draghi's remarks were highly relevant in this case is that they were made literally only a few weeks after the June 29th euro zone summit in which the governments agreed to create a multi-billion euro bail out fund to allow for direct recapitalization of euro zone banks that needed re-capitalization's. If Cyprus was not the text book case for where this type of bail out would be called for, what on earth is???

The reality is the German government, which could not stop creation of the fund, did however have the ability to block its use, and will do so forever. This was well known to Draghi, and everyone else at the table, they went on and on making these statements, which had the effect of stabilizing bank share prices, soverign debt bond yields, and forestalling bank runs. The time was well spent by the smart money, which of course slowly and quietly moved their money to Zurich, London and other safe havens.

Juncker did more than lie about the summit in Luxembourg. In fact he only came clean when presented with evidence that the finance ministers were videotaped arriving in their armored limousines

He also lied about the fact that a Greek exit from the euro was even discussed, once again he was forced to back down when he was presented with briefing papers taken by whistle blowers from the German finance ministers. Once again he was forced to admit the truth, but even at that point trying to obscure the truth by desperately making weak points that not everything in the briefing papers is discussed at the summits. I suppose if he were confronted with an audio tape of the summit, he would admit that was a lie also.

This exchange is starting to remind me of the story where a man's wife opens their bedroom door and finds him naked with another woman. The husband looks right at his wife and exclaims, honey, who do you believe, me or your lying eyes?. Lol.
07:25 April 4, 2013 by ChrisRea
So the EU says that will create a bail-out fund, it does create it and then contributes with a large chunk of money to the bail-out in Cyprus. Mario Draghi says that the ECB will do what is necessary to preserve the Euro and and indeed, the Euro was preserved. And you call that lies? Only because you disagree that bank investors and depositors should also contribute (contribute, not cover all the money needed!)?

And yes, Junker should be ashamed for trying to avoid pressures on the participants of that meeting. They should announce the agenda publicly and well in advance, so that, just like it happened in Cyprus, companies can transfer their funds in other jurisdictions just before the banks are closed.
17:18 April 6, 2013 by KarOTTO
How unfair is that: Greeks are the laziest and messiest people in Europe yet they have the reputation of being the ones who gave birth to the western civilisation. On the other hand, we work hard, we are ethical, we help everyoneand everyone accuses us for having tried to destroy the western civilisation twice
18:20 April 6, 2013 by sonriete
everyone seems to be blaming everyone else. This euro is seeming to be as much a recipe for war rather than the peace we were promised. In the north they say the south makes sport out of tax evasion. Is that Greek money stuffed in those banks in Luxembourg? I guess we will soon find out.
04:08 April 7, 2013 by Wolfgang Fritz
Cyprus was just to show how they can take German depositors money too if contagion effects German banks.

Beware of the governments we praise.
19:56 April 15, 2013 by Englishted
Testing testing one two three.
Today's headlines
Glass memorial honours Nazi disabled victims
Floral tributes were laid on Tuesday at the new Holocaust memorial in Berlin. Photo: DPA

Glass memorial honours Nazi disabled victims

A 24-metre blue glass wall in Berlin has been unveiled to commemorate the systematic murder of up to 300,000 mentally ill and disabled people under Adolf Hitler. READ  

Germany to help with Mediterranean refugees
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Germany to help with Mediterranean refugees

Interior Minister Thomas de Maizière on Tuesday pledged support for his Italian colleague in the struggle to manage refugees trying to reach the European Union via its southern coast. READ  

Ice bucket challenge raises €500,000 in a week
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Ice bucket challenge raises €500,000 in a week

The coffers of the German Society for Muscular Disease (DGM) are overflowing with donations thanks to the viral craze for videos of donors dousing themselves with ice-cold water. READ  

Russian-German school opens in teeth of conflict
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Russian-German school opens in teeth of conflict

The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) is pressing ahead with its German-Russian Institute of Advanced Technologies (GRIAT) against a backdrop of international tensions over Ukraine. READ  

Schweinsteiger is new Germany captain: Löw
Photo: DPA

Schweinsteiger is new Germany captain: Löw

Bastian Schweinsteiger will replace fellow Bayern Munich player Philipp Lahm as captain of the German national football team, head trainer Joachim Löw said on Tuesday. READ  

Munich minister resigns in 'model car scandal'
Christine Haderthauer at her resignation press conference in Munich on Monday. Photo: DPA

Munich minister resigns in 'model car scandal'

Christine Haderthauer, head of the Bavarian state chancery, resigned “with immediate effect” on Monday evening over the so-called “model car scandal” in which her company sold scale models built by a man convicted of three sexual murders. READ  

Russia 'severed' from Europe: President Gauck
President Gauck stands shoulder to shoulder with President Komorowski of Poland in Gdansk on Monday. Photo: DPA

Russia 'severed' from Europe: President Gauck

Russia has "effectively severed its partnership" with Europe and wants to establish a new order, German President Joachim Gauck said on Monday. READ  

National Uber ban is revenge of the taxis
Taxis are a powerful trade lobby in Germany. Photo: DPA

National Uber ban is revenge of the taxis

The Frankfurt regional court has imposed a temporary nationwide ban on chauffeur car service Uber, saying that it must pay a €250,000 fine if passengers continue to book rides through its app. READ  

Sex party 'desecrates' Bavarian royal spa
The facade of the Bad Reichenhall Royal Spa Hotel.

Sex party 'desecrates' Bavarian royal spa

The Bavarian finance ministry has demanded a report from the company running a publicly-owned spa in the town of Bad Reichenhall after they rented the property out for a fetish party. READ  

Merkel details Iraq arms shipment to MPs
Angela Merkel addressing the Bundestag on Monday as her ministers look on. Photo: DPA

Merkel details Iraq arms shipment to MPs

UPDATE: Chancellor Angela Merkel addressed the Bundestag on Monday to explain her government's decision to send weapons to Iraqi Kurds fighting terrorist group Isis. READ  

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