[German Chancellor Angela Merkel
Rages Against Greece]

"We're right to tell the Greeks: you have to save money, you have to be candid and you have to work on your honesty, otherwise we can't help you."

Nicholas Kulish of the Guardian reports that on the day when Standard & Poor's downgraded Greece's bonds to junk status on the 28th of April, Chancellor Angela Merkel was in the city of Bocholt. A medium-sized town with about 70,000 inhabitants, it might appear as a somewhat strange place to be at a time of crisis for the head of government of Europe's biggest economy.

But Bocholt belongs to the state of North Rhine Westphalia, Germany's most populous state, where Merkel's Christian Democrats are facing a regional election on 9 May. It became most obvious that the regional election campaign was on Merkel's mind when she reacted to the crisis in Greece:

"We're right to tell the Greeks: you have to save money, you have to be candid and you have to work on your honesty, otherwise we can't help you."

NOTE: On Monday, 10 May 2010, German Chancellor Angela Merkel admitted her coalition suffered a "bitter defeat" in the elections in North Rhine-Westphalia (noted above). Most analysts believe Merkel's defeat was in large part due to her government's recent decision to contribute to a huge rescue package for Greece a rescue package that most German voters want nothing to do with. The fear among Germans is that by contributing billions to the Greek bailout they will have to suffer wage cuts and tax freezes in the future to pay for it.

Now it's one thing to ask Greece for strict austerity measures in return for a bailout deal, but when Merkel implicitly said that the Greeks weren't honest and had poured money down the drain, Merkel was simply reacting to anti-Greek prejudices apparently shared by great numbers in Germany these days. Germany's biggest tabloid, Bild, screamed:

"You Greeks are getting nothing from us."

And when young policymakers in Merkel's Christian Democrat and Liberal coalition in a newspaper article asked Greece to sell a few of their islands to solve the problem, it was only the beginning of a series of rather unhelpful proposals.

Naturally enough, Germans know that they are being cast as the stingy villains in the financial drama over Greece. But in the struggling industrial cities in western Germany, they see themselves as victims of endless demands inside and outside the country for dwindling resources.

Gordon Welters for The New York Times writes:

"The Ruhr has declined as a prosperous industrial region, and many beleaguered former West Germans, the stalwarts of European integration before the country's reunification, are increasingly asking what is in it for them. The repercussions for Europe and the stability of financial markets worldwide could be enormous.

"Even before the drama in Athens, local residents' fatigue was evident from helping to shoulder the financial burden of rebuilding eastern Germany, as the heavy industry they depended on bled away.

"Germany's nearly $30 billion share of the bailout deal for Greece - and with it the fear that other countries on the periphery of the euro zone like Portugal and Spain will not be far behind - comes after the country spent an estimated $2 trillion to build up the former East Germany since the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. 'It's been like this for 20 years', said Walter Schmidt, 71, a retired mechanic who is opposed to helping Greece. 'Germany has its own debts. And the Ruhr is now very poor'.

A closed factory in the Ruhr - shadows of Detroit

"The recent plunge in stock markets and the fall of the euro against the dollar have been driven in large part by the fear that Germany would not help cover the debts of overburdened euro zone members, given how grudgingly and slowly the assistance for Greece came. 'I've lived in this state for 20 years and I've never seen the people so concerned about the future, about the economic and the social situation', said Franz Lehner, professor of applied social science at the Ruhr University of Bochum. 'The capability to survive in these cities is really at stake'.

"Bochum's Nokia cellphone factory picked up stakes two years ago and moved to Romania, with more than 2,000 jobs melting away in its wake. The carmaker Opel, which once employed 25,000 people in the city, today provides work for around 5,000 people, jobs that are also in jeopardy as Opel's corporate parent, General Motors, restructures its subsidiary.



Hannes Wader (born Hans Eckard Wader on 23 June 1942) is a German songwriter (Liedermacher), singer and guitarist. He is an important figure in German leftist circles; he writes songs covering such themes as socialist and communist resistance to oppression in Europe and other places like Latin America. WADER IS GERMANY'S VERSION OF PETE SEEGER


"Unemployment is 10.2 percent in Bochum, lower than in nearby Essen or Dortmund, but well above the national rate of 8.1 percent. 'You wouldn't believe how many old people, normally dressed, are collecting bottles in front of the train station', said Johannes Henke, 40, a taxi driver standing under a shopping center overhang to stay out of the rain."

NOTE: Germany counts unemployment much in the same fashion that the United States does, so one must double the official figure of 10.2 percent to 20.4 percent to get the real unemployment rate in Germany.

Welters continues:

"Like municipalities throughout the Ruhr, the city government is in deep fiscal trouble. According to Paul Aschenbrenner, the Bochum city director, the city was $1.8 billion in debt, or $4,700 for each resident. The government has been forced to cut municipal jobs, raise fees at music schools and reduce hours and increase prices at sports facilities. 'Yet last year the city paid $11.6 million to help with projects in the former East Germany, part of the $290 million it has paid since the fall of the Berlin Wall', Mr. Aschenbrenner said.

"Christian Haardt, a Bochum City Council member said: 'We're barely able to fill potholes in Bochum, and yet we are being asked to bail-out Greece'."

We need your help to spread the word concerning Antipas Ministries and the eschatological viewpoint it represents; WE NEED YOUR HELP BECAUSE WE DO NOT "LINK" WITH OTHER SO-CALLED "CHRISTIAN" WEBSITES which are, for the most part, "in the tank" insofar as their loyalty to the United States is concerned - a loyalty that has made them partners in the BLOODY trail the American military has left in its TERROR-RIDDEN rampage throughout the world, as well as making them partners in the abject poverty that American corporations have imposed on the peoples and nations the American military machine has ravaged - A BLOODY, TERROR-RIDDEN RAMPAGE THAT HAS TO A LARGE DEGREE BEEN CARRIED OUT IN THE NAME OF THE "PRINCE OF PEACE." [Please see our articles, "The Third World as a Model for the New World Order," Inside the American New World Order System" and "The American Empire: The Corporate / Pentagon / CIA / Missionary Archipelago."]



© Antipas Ministries