ATHENS – Former Greek Prime Minister and one-time PASOK Socialist leader Costas Simitis, who ushered his country into the Eurozone, now says it’s been sacrificed to preserve the financial bloc and said that the debt – to which his party contributed with needless hirings – can’t be sustained.
In an interview with the newspaper To Via, Simitis, whose administration was also wracked by scandals, said Greece was the “Iphigenia of Europe,” referring to the ancient Greek play in which King Agamemnon sacrifices his daughter to appease the goddess Artemis so that he would provide winds for Greek ships to sail to Troy.
He said the goal of Greece’s lenders, the Troika of the European Union-International Monetary Fund-European Central Bank (EU-IMF-ECB) that is putting up $325 billion in two bailouts, and wants the debt cut to 124 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by 2020 is an illusion that can’t be met.
“The Eurozone is an incomplete economic and monetary union of member-states with different structural characteristics. When the Union was founded, there was no plan for economic governance that would deal with the inequalities between the core and less well developed periphery,” he noted.
“The objective is to make the Union a force for the progress of its people. To that end it should aim towards consolidation in economic, social and political terms, while at the same time redefine its goals based on the current condition of the international economy.”
Two years ago, angry Greeks demonstrated outside his house in Athens, casting some of the blame on him for the country’s crushing economic crisis.
Last month, a makeshift bomb detonated outside his summer homein Aghioi Theodoroi, near Corinth, causing widespread damage but no injuries.