The Danaides Tribe

Article published on March 7, 2012
Article published on March 7, 2012
By Aris Kokkinos, Translated by Danica Jorden Do you remember Manau’s rap “Le tribu de Dana” ? Adapting the words to Greece, we could sing about the Danaides, daughters of King Danaus, condemned to eternally refill a bottomless well as punishment for their profanity. How long will Greece continue to demand last minute credits? How long will its partners find only temporary solutions?

There will come a time when responsibility must be taken for the disaster, but until then action must be taken, often urgently. Greece has been under intense criticism since February 27, when the Standard & Poor’s index lowered its rating to SD, selective default, further aggravating an already perilous situation.

The cancellation of the 2 March Euro zone summit, following Germany’s criticisms of the Eurozone firewall allocations reaching 750 billion euros in aid, reveals the latent panic attack reigning in Brussels. The IMF estimates that it is essential that the firewall problem be managed to avoid the spread of the Greek problem to other countries in financial straits. As for the Greeks, as much as they try to put out one fire, another one starts.

The Standard & Poor’s decision was expected. The agency already announced that they were about to lower Greece’s rating as an agreement was reached by private financial groups to write off the country’s debts. But following the decision, the Central European Bank added on 28 February that it would no longer accept Greek bonds as collateral. The suspension measure will be lifted on 20 March, at which time the second aid plan comes into effect, on condition that the banks underwrite the programme negotiated between Greece and private creditors. The Danaides haven’t stopped buzzing.