Ein griechischer Arzt berichtet : „Wer kein Geld hat, der stirbt“


Griechenland muss sparen, und das sieht so aus: Krebskranke bleiben ohne Hilfe, Polio kehrt zurück, Diabetiker erblinden. Georgis Vichas berichtet aus der Praxis.

GIORGIOS VICHAS, 53, ist Arzt und Herzspezialist in einem Athener Krankenhaus. Nebenbei leitet er seit vier Jahren eine Poliklinik, wo Ärzte und andere medizinische Fachkräfte in ihrer Freizeit allen Patienten ohne Krankenversicherung kostenlos Hilfe bieten. Vichas ist verheiratet und hat zwei Töchter.

Herr Vichas, müssen Sie fürchten, bald einen Herzinfarkt zu bekommen?


400 US mercenaries ‘deployed on ground’ in Ukraine military op


Ukrainian troops outside the town of Andreyevskoe near Slaviyansk, Donetsk Region, where local residents blocked a column of Ukrainian Army armored personnel carriers. (RIA Novosti / Mikhail Voskresenskiy)

Ukrainian troops outside the town of Andreyevskoe near Slaviyansk, Donetsk Region, where local residents blocked a column of Ukrainian Army armored personnel carriers. (RIA Novosti / Mikhail Voskresenskiy)

About 400 elite mercenaries from the notorious US private security firm Academi (formerly Blackwater) are taking part in the Ukrainian military operation against anti-government protesters in southeastern regions of the country, German media reports.

The Bild am Sonntag newspaper, citing a source in intelligence circles, wrote Sunday that Academi employees are involved in the Kiev military crackdown on pro-autonomy activists in near the town of Slavyansk, in the Donetsk region.

On April 29, German Intelligence Service (BND) informed Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government about the mercenaries’ participation in the operation, the paper said, RIA Novosti reported. It is not clear who commands the private military contractors and pays for their services, however.


Grèce : un ancien diplomate grec prédit l’insurrection sociale et des manifestations sanglantes

Les révélations explosives d’un ancien diplomate grec.

Un ancien diplomate grec, Leonidas Chrysanthopoulos, s’est confié depuis qu’il a démissionné de son poste aux ministère grec des affaires étrangères. Notamment avec des journalistes de Newstatesman et Millstonenews. Il prédit une insurrection sociale et des manifestations violentes en Grèce et indique que le gouvernement aurait engagé BlackWater, l’entreprise américaine militaire privée tristement célèbre pour ses activités en Irak, pour protéger le parlement. S’il semble être rassuré sur les forces armées grecques et un éventuel coup d’Etat, il ne mâche pas ses mots sur le gouvernement, l’UE et le futur sombre qui attend le pays.
Leonidas Chrysanthopoulos était un diplomate du ministère grec des affaires étrangères. En tant que jeune officier en service dans les années 1970, il a contribué à assurer l’adhésion de la nation alors fraîchement démocratique à l’Union Européenne (à l’époque la CEE). Il a été ambassadeur d’Athènes en Pologne, en Albanie et au Canada, et, enfin, le directeur général des affaires européennes au sein du ministère.

L’an dernier, il a finalement démissionné en tant que secrétaire général de l’organisation de coopération de la mer Noire, est parti dans le secteur privé, et se sent désormais libre de parler ouvertement de sa fureur sur ce que font l’Europe et les prêteurs internationaux à son pays.

“A un certain moment, très bientôt, il y aura une explosion des troubles sociaux. Cela sera très désagréable” dit-il. Dans les dernières semaines, les bureaux des partis au pouvoir ont été incendiés, ainsi que les maisons de journalistes pro-gouvernementaux. Le siège du parti de la Nouvelle Démocratie au pouvoir a été mitraillé et quelques jours plus tard, une bombe a explosé dans un centre commercial appartenant au 2ème citoyen le plus riche du pays. Personne n’a été gravement blessé par les attaques. (more…)

Greece: “A promise from the army has been obtained to not intervene against a civil uprising” Explosive revelations from a former Greek diplomat.

It is always enlightening to hear the frank assessment of a diplomat upon leaving the service, once unshackled from “the patriotic art of lying for one’s country”, as 19th Century American journalist Ambrose Bierce described the craft.

Leonidas Chrysanthopoulos was a career diplomat with the Greek foreign ministry. As a junior officer with the service in the 1970s, he helped assure the then freshly democratic nation’s accession to the European Union (at the time the EEC). He was at different times Athens’ ambassador to Poland, Albania and Canada, and finally the director general of EU Affairs in the ministry.

Last year, he finally resigned as secretary general of the Black Sea Cooperation organisation, and entered the private sector, and now feels free to speak openly about his fury at what he says Europe and international lenders are doing to his country.

“At a certain moment, quite soon, there will be an explosion of social unrest. It will be very unpleasant,” he says, referring to 15 armed incidents in the previous ten days. In the past few weeks, offices of the governing parties have been firebombed as well as the homes of pro-government journalists. The headquarters of the prime minister’s conservative New Democracy party was machine-gunned, and days later a bomb exploded at a shopping mall belonging to the country’s second wealthiest citizen, although no one has been badly injured by the attacks.

“It is an escalation of activities,” he worries, adding that he expects the “explosion” to occur sooner rather than later. He predicts the spark will be when new, retroactive and sizeable tax bills come due in the coming months that people simply cannot pay. “There will be further increases in armed actions. There will be bloody demonstrations.” (more…)

Muddy Water in Greece: Millstone Interview Makes a Ripple


By Barbara Van Haute

In December, Millstone published my interview with former Greek Ambassador to Canada, Leonidas Chrysanthopoulos. The interview was initiated because I was curious about the impact of financial austerity policies on a struggling populace and Greece was the most obvious place to look for evidence.

I published the Ambassador’s responses verbatim. I believe the overall content of his answers gave us a clear understanding of just how and why Greek society, and perhaps culture, was changing as a result of the long standing economic crisis. For almost six weeks, the interview seemed to be an interesting analysis but just one of many opinion pieces on the Greek crisis, consigned to the loyal readership of Millstone News with perhaps the occasional outside foray from Ottawa.

However, this was simply the calm before the storm. Greek bloggers and newspapers started picking up the interview around February 1st. Within a week, the article’s publication proved to have ripple effects beyond what I could have ever imagined. The European interest has focused on the Ambassador’s comment about a private security firm, ACADEMI (yes, the organization is officially spelled in all caps and, ironically for this story, is consciously modeled on the Greek philosopher Plato’s Academy), formerly Blackwater, being hired to protect the Greek Parliament from civil unrest. Based on virtual ‘hit’ statistics, the interview has been read by at least 2000 people in Greece alone. Ambassador Chrysanthopoulos also received numerous requests for interviews from the Greek, German and British media to confirm some of his statements. [For readers interested in more observations from the Ambassador, check the German media source ‘heise online’ for February 7th.] (more…)

A MERCENARY FORCE TO PROTECT POLITICIANS Excerpts from an interview given by Ambassador Leonidas Chrysanthopoulos to the German TELEPOLIS (Vasilis Asvestopoulos) on February 7, 2013

On the occasion of recent developments in Greece, Telepolis spoke to the Greek Ambassador Leonidas Chrysanthopoulos. The restless diplomat has been involved since some time with EPAM, one of the many organizations that have been fighting against the austerity measures. The leader of EPAM, the economist Dimitris Kazakis speaks on a daily basis on radio broadcasts, providing an analysis of the existing situation, with very high ratings, but has not yet convinced many voters.

Chrysanthopoulos was responsible for an issue that made news in the Greek press last week. In an interview that he gave to the Canadian Electronic Newspaper Millstone, he announced in December 2012,that the Greek Government had signed a contract with the American security firm Blackwater-which has been renamed to Academi, by which it would protect the Government and Parliament against civil unrest. It probably represents the first use of mercenaries outside an official war zone.

Only then did the topic became an issue in Greece. From the blogs it found its way to the printed press. Further Reports are expected in the weekend press as well as in the New Statesman.

What do you have to say about this?


Ambassador Leonidas Chrysanthopoulos on the Greek economic crisis: could this Greek Tragedy lead to civil war?

By Barbara Van Haute

Editorial Note:  Of all the nations experiencing traumatic economic difficulties during the course of the current Great Recession, Greece has suffered the most adverse consequences.  The country’s five year economic problems have been longer and deeper than that of any developed country.  In fact, Greece has gone through a catastrophic depression otherwise unknown in the West.

The  standard of living has dropped drastically; unemployment has reached 26%; the debt to GDP ratio  is over 180%; the country’s “fiscal cliff” is looming bankruptcy;  social spending and the “safety net” have been eviscerated; while demonstrations and riots target both domestic debt reduction measures and the financial institutions  of the European Union power brokers. In response, the European Union and the IMF have authorized a bail-out of 240 billion Euros, some debt relief, and longer repayment schedules in exchange for severe austerity legislation and economic restructuring.

As of last month, the European Union signed off on a further agreement, with mixed benefits and results, to address the crisis.  As one analysis put it, “This deal provides little ‘free’ cash for the government to spend.  The vast bulk of the package provides for further recapitalization of the banks, repayment of arrears and maturing debt, and a debt buyback from private holders.  That leaves only a modest amount of discretionary fiscal spending for the next few months. As before, Greece will depend importantly on sales of government debt to Greek banks to finance itself, which in turn is made possible by liquidity from the ECB. That’s a new definition of recycling, whereby the monetary authority is the ultimate provider of financing to service official debts.” [Council on Foreign Relations website, Nov. 27, 2012: “Greece Gets Its Deal”] (more…)