Greece between Brussels and Berlin

Greece between Brussels and Berlin

Brussels and Berlin found themselves at the centre of the Greek political scene because of the Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras’ visits to both capitals. On December 14th there was Alexis Tsipras’ meeting with Cypriot President Nico Anastasiades on Cyprus, and on Wednesday, December 15th he participated in the EU Summit, where he had the opportunity to meet the leadership of the institutions and EU leaders on the margins of the Summit.

The Greek programme for the debt, the refugee crisis and the Cyprus issue were all on the agenda of the Greek Prime Minister’s talks with his interlocutors. In a Europe that continues to raise multiple barriers, with Germany’s stifling economic tutelage, the refugee crisis not yet resolved and Brexit a taboo in many discussions, as well as the confusion within the EU itself, it seems that they cannot or do not want to find the necessary resolve to take the final decisions needed to solve problems.

Stuck in the developments of their own countries and the elections that will follow in 2017, leaders of EU members, are marginalising the structural problems of the Union, increasing the uncertainty within the EU.

Unable to understand the changes that affect the global community, Brussels bureaucrats, watch as outsiders and react spasmodically to developments, sweeping problems under the carpet rather than resolving them. The dissolution of the Union appears to be closer than ever, and this political climate prevails in the EU institutions, where everyone seems to be trying to salvage the achievements of his political career.


In this political climate Alexis Tsipras, is almost alone in seeking solutions to his own problems, of debt adjustment, exit to the markets and a return to economic growth as well as a political climate shift in the internal political situation in order to improve citizens’ daily life.

His allies in this effort are the European Socialists, who at this point are involved in the selection process for a replacement to Martin Schulz, with Gianni Pittella hoping, without much chance, for the position of the President of the European Parliament.

The bipartisanship prevailing in EU institutions seems to be cracking in the search for a President of the European Parliament. This on the one hand is probably good for Alexis Tsipras, as every vote for the election of the President, acquires value. The European Left and the Greens with 102 votes are now a significant player and can shape the new landscape within the EU. Alexis Tsipras’ participation as an observer during sessions of the European Socialists, as IBNA has often mentioned,  is no coincidence, if anything it strengthens the position of the Greek Prime Minister.

This is after all what the European Socialists reaction showed after the freezing of the short-term debt relief measures from the ESM, due to the special supplement Tsipras distributed to pensioners after the 2016 budget surplus.


On the other hand, the election in September in Germany, has a new parameter, which may partly and under certain conditions, help Alexis Tsipras. Discussions, between the Socialist Party Die Linke and the Green Party, concerning a possible cooperation as well as a possible government coalition if the election results confirm this possibility, have already began.

Socialists in Germany have already understood that embracing Angela Merkel’s CDU party, is something which is diminishing their electoral power and cannot be widely accepted, members of the SPD told IBNA.

This is of course a good scenario for Alexis Tsipras. But of course there is another scenario, which is making the rounds in Brussels: Greece will once again become a target of publications aiming to draw people away from the actual problems the EU is having and seeking to make Greece the Union’s sacrificial lamb..ΙΒΝΑ

Photos: IBNA/Spiros Sideris