On ABC Radio National’s ‘Big Ideas’ program: ‘The Dirty War for Europe’s Integrity & Soul’

ABC Radio National’s ‘Big Ideas’ program has now broadcast my talk entitled The Dirty War for Europe’s Integrity & Soul (original broadcast: 30th October, 20.05 Sydney time). [Click here for details of the lecture.]

For the complete transcript click here – please note that the ABC (to fit in both the talk and the discussion the followed in 55 mins) edited out an important analytical part concerning the history of the European Union (which I use to explain why the current crisis is not resulting in a move toeard further union/integration). 

Lastly, here is an earlier interview on the contents of the same lecture with Philip Adams on the ABC RN’s Late Night Live (recorded on the eve of my talk). 

5 thoughts on “On ABC Radio National’s ‘Big Ideas’ program: ‘The Dirty War for Europe’s Integrity & Soul’

  1. Dear Yanis

    Your views are insightful and well supported, truly an innovative analysis in the sense that it combines “geo-economics”, geopolitics and humanistic values pursuit in a unique way. But it is reality itself that will be putting all these to the test. And reality, for now and the foreseeable future, is not pointing at the direction that you advocate.

    Apparently, there are three leading economic powers in the Eurozone: Germany primarily, and France & Italy secondarily. The German elite is perfectly happy with the status quo because they and their country are the big winners (to the detriment of all the rest) and thus they will never be convinced to change course just for the sake of “enlightened hegemony”. The only way for them for Germany to compromise away from their current positions is to be forced to do so. Due to the current balance of power, the only way for Germany to listen to the “voice of reason” is to be faced by a solid and determined Franco-Italian coalition. There is no other alternative, for obvious reasons: France or Italy alone simply do not have the power or the “guts” to stand up against the “Reich”, Spain is clearly not a major economic power, other Southern countries including Greece, besides being weak, will not be taken seriously since they are viewed as “beggars” and the United Kingdom is not trusted since it is aiming full force at the dismantling of the Eurozone because its elite has decided that a World without the Euro is better for British overall strategic interests.

    So, to make my point, do you really see a possibility for such a Franco-Italian coalition to materialise? Do you even see any signs or indications in this direction? Can French and Italian elites, thinkers and opinion makers overcome their respective national “ego” and muster enough will power to discuss a joint strategy and action plan along the lines that you suggest?

    Since I am Greek and I live in Greece, I feel compelled to ask you another practical question, since I respect you as a distinguished and honest thinker: Under the above conditions of unwillingness of the French and Italians to take a stance opposite to Germany, is it really prudent for Greece to stick its neck out alone above the trench line and be exposed to the overwhelming “fire barrage” of Germany? Do you think that, if we seriously challenge the Reich, they will hesitate even for a split second to order “Feuer”, just like they did in the case of Cyprus a few months ago? Would it not be wiser to keep our head down for a few more months or even a couple of years until a more favourable power balance is formed within the Eurozone?
    I would appreciate very much your reply on these.

    • Crucial questions. On the first, I very much fear that France cannot be relied upon. France is more of an impediment to a rational solution than even Germany is. Italy on the other hand is another story. It can be the power that effects change. On the second question, Greece just does not have the luxury of hanging in there, doing as it is told and waiting for someone else to effect a U turn at the European level. Will Germany throw a ‘recalcitrant’ Greece out? There is always a risk of an irrational response from Berlin even to the most rational of Greek demands. However, if Germany could have ridden itself of Greece it would have already done so. Secondly, the more rational, sensible and appealing to the average German the Greek negotiating position the less the chance of a German backclash. In any case, even if we choose the wait and see strategy you are recommending, we will eventually need to put our foot down. The longer we wait the more wretched and weak we shall be when the moment of truth comes.

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