Flash-floods in the poor suburbs of Athens where illegal building and extremely deficient infrastructure reign left behind 20 dead and extensive material damage, opening a new round of contention and political uncertainty. This consequence of climate change, which has given to Southern Europe the new phenomenon of Medi-canes (the likes of West Atlantic and Caribbean hurricanes), is causing extensive political damage to the extremely fragile fabric of today’s Greece.
This must be cause of particular bitterness to the Government in place, since recent months have seen a clear – and to many observers as well as to the Greek Opposition, a largely puzzling - amelioration of the relations with European partners and of the image of Greece at large. Negotiations for the third review of the current Adjustment Programme are visibly easier than earlier rounds; a copious Greek bond swap, whereby some 20 series of scattered paper will be regrouped in five 5 to 6 bn series, is underway so as to provide a deeper market as well as a more predictable yield curve – thus helping Greece to access again global markets to refinance its mountain of debt with the new money under favourable terms.
While the country’s creditors seem eager to support such cutting loose from the helpline provided for the last six years, internal stability of the Greek political system is still lacking. “When the gods wish it so…” remains a major component of Greek political life in late 2017.