Greece: Profile of a Failed State
Greece is corrupt, dysfunctional and repressive.
by Stephen Lendman
Greece exhibits failed and rogue state characteristics. It governs irresponsibly. It's beholden more to foreign interests than its own. Banker needs are prioritized. Ruling authority outside Greece dictates terms.
The country's unable or refuses to provide public services. It threatens the welfare of its people. It spurns legitimate rule. It's bankrupt but won't declare it.
Governance in Greece combines travesty, tragedy and shame. Democracy's birth place spurns it. It also displays an unprincipled disregard for human need at a time of rampant corruption and prioritized military spending.
In 2011, seven billion euros went for arms. Greece is the tenth largest weapons importer. It's one of 28 NATO countries. Collective defense requires member states to purchase arms and buy them from alliance partners.
As a percent of GDP, Greek defense spending is nearly double that of other EU nations. Germany is one of Athens' main creditors. It's also one of its largest arms suppliers. They account for 15% of Berlin's weapons exports.
No justification exists. Greece has no enemies. It's also broke. It can't or won't provide public services. It borrows hugely to repay and service debt, and rampant corruption is out-of-control.
Transparency International (TI) says "Greek people live in a state of 'corrupt legality,' meaning that the law often condones or even fosters corrupt practices. Corruption is endemic: not limited to any party or social class, nor to the public sector."
"The public sector suffers from substantial gaps in both law and practice, thus allowing corruption to thrive. Public officials have been allowed to act for decades without any transparency or effective oversight."
"As a result, lack of integrity, tendency to demand and accept bribes, and unfaithfulness to public service have proliferated. Wrongdoing has eroded the rule of law and facilitated a culture of impunity."
Privileged elites hide wealth in favored tax havens. Doing so explains part of the problem.
Unaccountability lets them get away with what no one should tolerate. It's especially outrageous at a time of economic crisis and appalling human deprivation. Force-feeding more pain exacerbates deplorable conditions.
Last May, dominant parties polled poorly. Voters rejected austerity. Many voted with their feet and opted out. Ordinary Greeks are beset by crushing wage, benefit, and other social cuts.