Greeks are not the first ones to protest about austerity measures – however it is the first “first world” country to go through it in the last decade.
If anyone is paying attention to the news in Athens, there is growing social unrest and we are just at the tip of the iceberg. If the Greeks have to do one more bailout in the near future (which is more likely than not – as the Greeks will need more money just to pay its interest payments and tax revenues are down, since the economy has stalled), then we will see growing nationalistic movements in the Greeks. As mentioned in earlier posts, other European countries will also face bailouts. However we will see when/how they react (Italy, Spain, France and Germany will follow – with Germany being the last country to fold its hand).
Greek lawmakers approve austerity (Reuters)
Greece’s parliament approved a deeply unpopular austerity bill Monday to secure a second EU/IMF bailout and avoid national bankruptcy, as buildings burned across central Athens and violence spread around the country.
Cinemas, cafes, shops and banks were set ablaze in central Athens and black-masked protesters fought riot police outside parliament before lawmakers voted on the package that demands deep pay, pension and job cuts – the price of a 130 billion euro bailout needed to keep the country afloat.
State television reported the violence spread to the tourist islands of Corfu and Crete, the northern city of Thessaloniki and towns in central Greece. Police said 150 shops were looted in the capital and 34 buildings set ablaze.
This is chilling news infact. More to follow…