This week on our broadcast, the Dialogos Interview Series will be featuring an interview with the esteemed Greek economist Leonidas Vatikiotis. In this interview, Vatikiotis will discuss the recent “haircut” imposed on large bank deposits in Cyprus and the subsequent “bailout” that the country received from the European Union and the IMF. Vatikiotis will analyze these developments, and their potential impact on the economies of Cyprus, Greece, and the Eurozone more broadly.
The transcript of Dialogos Radio’s interview with the universally renowned scholar Noam Chomsky, on the latest political, economic, and social developments in Greece and in Europe, follows below. This interview aired on October 11-12, 2012. Find the podcast of this interview here.
MN: Professor Chomsky, thank you for joining us on Dialogos Radio. You have written and spoken extensively about the ongoing crisis in Greece and Europe, and about similar crises in the past. To begin, you’ve said in the past that the “troika”—the IMF, the European Union, and the European Central Bank—want to destroy Greece. Why do you believe Greece is the target, or the scapegoat if you will, when it represents such a small percentage of the world’s economy?
NC: Well, I’m sure I didn’t say “wants to destroy Greece,” I say that its policies are destroying Greece. What I presume they’re trying to do—actually, what was stated by the president of the ECB Mario Draghi—he didn’t state this as an intention, but as a description of what’s happening. He says the current policies will destroy the European social contract, the welfare state. That was in an interview in the Wall Street Journal. He wasn’t advocating it, he was describing it. And I think that’s probably pretty accurate. I don’t think they are picking on Greece specifically, it’s that Greece is the weakest link in the chain, so it will therefore suffer the most from these policies.