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Home / News / Economy / Ops! The Bismarck spotted! IMF describes “Greece as the most unhelpful client in history”

Ops! The Bismarck spotted! IMF describes “Greece as the most unhelpful client in history”

After the heavy artillery with the giant mortars and the Stukas it’s time for battleship Bismarck to take position in the grand battle against Greece. Earlier in the afternoon, I thought I spotted Christine Lagarde as crew member of the legendary WWII warship as it was sailing the Saronic Gulf between the island of Aegina and the Greek capital.

“International Monetary Fund officials told their euro-area colleagues that Greece is the most unhelpful client their organization has dealt with in its 70-year history, according to two people familiar with the talks.

In a short and bad-tempered conference call on Tuesday, officials from the IMF, the European Central Bank and the European Commission complained that Greek officials aren’t adhering to a bailout extension deal reached in February or cooperating with creditors, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the call was private.” (Bloomberg)


legendary battleship Bismarck

PS I think some submarines are been missing and the big bang can start…

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  1. They really mean it’s the first time a ‘client’ refused to be pushed around.

  2. Ωστόσο, όπως εξηγεί η κυρία Κλάιν, μετά και την εμπειρία της Αργεντινής, «το ΔΝΤ ήταν έτοιμο κυριολεκτικά να χρεοκοπήσει,τόσο ιδεολογικά όσο και χρηματικά. Σε αυτό είχε βοηθήσει και η οικονομική κρίση μετά το 2008. Μην ξεχνάτε ότι το ΔΝΤ είχε αναγκαστεί να πουλήσει ακόμη και χρυσό από τα αποθέματά του. Και βέβαιαη εικόνα του στον αναπτυσσόμενο κόσμο ήταν τόσο κακή που οι ηγεσίες των χωρών αυτών δεν ήθελαν να το δουν μπροστά τους». «Τώρα όμως» επισημαίνει «το ΔΝΤ βρήκε μια νέα “αγορά”:την Ευρώπη.Κατά έναν περίεργο τρόπο,σώσατε το ΔΝΤ από τη χρεοκοπία».
    As Naomi Klein explains, after studying the Argentina case, “IMF was ready for bunkrupty, ideologically and as a fund. The 2008 econ. crisis led them to this situation. IMF had been forced to sell gold from its reserves. Its image throughout the developing world had been damaged and the leaders of developing states were against it. Now, IMF found a new market in Europe. In a distorted way Greece saved IMF.

  3. 18 Euro memberzone countries, the IMF (188 countries) and the ECB are all remotely controlled by Schäuble from his magic wheelchair?

    70 years after the war you intend to let the grandchildren pay for the crimes of their ancestors and capitalize on the suffering of yours?

    Not with me. – I do not beleive in the concept of ‘Originial Sin’ and your are clearly stuck in the ages before the enlightment.

    Your ridiculous and tasteless Nazi allusions are only a sign of immaturity and paranoia and contribute towards the tippimg of the public sentiment in Germany towards a Wish for a Grexit. From 40% earlier this year to over 60% now.

    P.S. Syriza had 2,2 Million votes, buyed with unfulfillable promises. Merkel had over 20 Million (and no promises)… – Should we resolve this matter in a good democratic matter?

    • 70 years after the war you intend to let the grandchildren pay for the crimes of their ancestors and capitalize on the suffering of yours?

      But it is ok to capitalise on the greed of Siemens, Rheinmetall, Atlas, Thyssen, Ferostahl, Airbus, Ericsson, and convict many future Greek generations to poverty because of the crimes of the mainly German corporate world?

      • “Fakelaki” is a Greek word, not a German one and there is a sound reason behind it, why.

        Bribes are first demanded, then paid.

        Keep going in alienating foreign investors and they will create jobs elsewhere.

        The biggest enemy of Syriza is – by the way – not the German finance minister, but the Greek taxpayer. Your primary surplus is gone (missing tax revenue due to tax fraud) and this leaves your nation at the goodwill of the creditors. – Only alternative: Drachme and unprecedented austerity for decades. Your call.

        • keeptalkinggreece


        • Bribes are first demanded, then paid.

          Like Schaueble did with Schreiber then, is it? See, here’s the difference. The very corrupt Greek minister for defense Akis Tsochatzopoulos is in jail. The equally corrupt, by his own admission, W. Schaueble running the most powerful ministry in Germany. And you think you have any right to pontificate about corruption, fakelaki etc.?
          Tell us, why is it that the EU (including Greece) and 164 states have ratified the United Nations Convention against Corruption, but Germany hasn’t? And why is it that forty two members of the Council of Europe have ratified the Criminal Law convention on Corruption, but Germany hasn’t?
          Wouldn’t you think that with all the accusations about corruption and bribery being committed elsewhere, Germany itself might just start implementing some of this, 10 years after agreeing with it and doing nothing?

          • Do you understand the difference between a party donation and a bribe?

            Obviously not.

            In Germany, already a party donation (nothing illegal) brings you into trouble.

            United Nations Convention against Corruption? – A farce: Syria, Somalia, North Korea and Monaco have signed it. – But not a single European country. – One exceptio: the safe tax harbour Monaco.

            Guys, I am afraid that YOU have to clean house – not the rest of the world and the constant lecturing which you perceive is the direct result of your constant denial of this.

          • keeptalkinggreece

            LOL, there are also illegal party donations for example by an arm dealer.

          • Wrong. The famous arms dealer donation was not illegal by default and in fact Schäuble was not involved in the illegal part. Horst Weyrauch, Kiep and Uwe Lüthje had distributed the money without the knowledge of the party among themselves. Schäuble had given the money that was handed to him to the dedicated secretary. The money then was illegally distributed among the three mentioned before, according to the court’s report.

            The contribution was perfectly legal, what Weyrauch, Kiep and Lüthje did on the other hand was not. At least tell the whole story and not this half-boiled nonsense.

            And while this affair is indeed something bad, it is not NEARLY as bad as it is in Greece and the numbers form e.g. Transparency International do back that up nicely. Not to mention that you do not have to bribe anyone in Germany to get anything done.

          • keeptalkinggreece

            I didn’t know that Germany invented a Briberometer differentiating between good and bad bribery. (ops! Max Schreibl/Edmund Stoiber/Amigo Affair, Lambsdorff/Flick Affair!). But Germans knwo how to nicely cover up and put the sh** under the carpet. Not to mention SIEMENS etc. In one thing you’re right though: in Germany when bribery is BIG , while in Greece it can refer also to small amounts of 50-100 euro.

          • You should check the data first because you blow things out of proportion.

          • keeptalkinggreece

            aha! Amigo & other affairs never happened? Vergagenheitsbewaeltigung has erased everything from the mind of the average German?

          • Do you understand the difference between a party donation and a bribe?

            What I do understand from you and your fellow all-is-well in Germany colleagues is that it is VERY obvious that what is good for the gander is not necesserally good for the goose. The gander being Germany, the goose being everybody else…
            As for this comment

            Bribes are first demanded, then paid.

            , how idiotic can the defense get??? What you are really saying is that those who “ask” are criminals, those who “pay” aren’t at fault at all, and nothing should be done about them. Which part of the word “NO” do these people not understand? Go and check the biggest corruption scandals in the US and in Europe. You will invariably find your German corporate flagship SIEMENS there, fined to the tune of billions. Which of course, is pocket money compared to the profits they make from this practice. Oh, and don’t forget your other flagship of dirty tricks, Deutsche Bank…
            This is very much so a case of pots calling the kettle black…

          • Control of corruption in Germany (2010) according to Transparency International

            PERCENTILE RANK:

            BRIBE PAYERS INDEX Germany (2011)
            SCORE: 8.6/10

            Now onto Greece.

            CONTROL OF CORRUPTION (2010)
            PERCENTILE RANK:


            Control of corruption reflects perceptions of the extent to which public power is exercised for private gain. This includes both petty and grand forms of corruption, as well as “capture” of the state by elites and private interests.

            Control of corruption is one of the six dimensions of the Worldwide Governance Indicators.


            Point estimates range from about -2.5 to 2.5. Higher values correspond to better governance outcomes.

            Source: World Bank

            The Bribe Payers Index ranks the world’s wealthiest and most economically influential countries according to the likelihood of their firms to bribe abroad.


            Scores range from 0 to 10, indicating the likelihood of firms headquartered in these countries to bribe when operating abroad.

            The higher the score for the country, the lower the likelihood of companies from this country to engage in bribery when doing business abroad.

            Source: Transparency International

            The country review is based on the progress of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions, requiring each party to make foreign bribery a crime.


            Countries are evaluated and classified into four categories:

            Active enforcement
            Moderate enforcement
            Little enforcement
            No enforcement

            Source: Transparency International

          • Oh and of course.

            OECD ANTI-BRIBERY CONVENTION Germany (2011)

      • So profiting from companies that do business with people, something nobody is forced to do, is the same as military occupation under the third reich? You can’t be serious.

        How about Greece starts to address it’s truckload of domestic problems that lead to the involvement of foreign powers in the first place? You know corruption, tax evasion, red tape etc, even the Greek politicans understand this has to be done. Once these things are finnaly done the country will recover, right now the chances for that are low.

      • About time someone said this! Why aren’t the German people angry that their politicians are making the German people pay for those crony corporations?

        By the way, I don’t agree with using war metaphors but it’s not my website.

      • “…mainly German corporate world…” ??? You should not confuse “corporate headquarter” and “majority shareholder residence”.

    • @KTG: Of course they did happen, so? Does it have any impact on the fact the Greece is far more corrupt? Not just because I say so, but also because the data from e.g. Transparency International does confirm this.

      What is your point?

      • keeptalkinggreece

        diverting the discussion you have started does not add to your argumentation.
        my point is: who without sin throw the first stone. and lower your Oberlehrer-Finger.
        BTW: I think to remember that some 800 Germans were on the Lagarde list of HSBC clients suspected of tax evasion.

        • Diverting? From what? You are going on about how Germany is soo corrupt, but ignore reality. There is no data that would hold up to any scrutiny that would confirm your claim.

          Being suspected of anything does not mean guilty.

  4. EU institutions by their own hand are committing a kind of suicide of the EU by defending austerity against the people.

  5. I have followed this blog since the beginning of the crisis.
    It is interesting to see how the tone changes over the years.

    Initially the posts were all about what was wrong with Greece.
    Then it shifted towards what was wrong with Germany in respect to Greece.
    Now it shifted towards what is wrong with international organizations in respect to Greece, flavored with German WWII weapons.

    What will the next shift be?

    • keeptalkinggreece

      thanks for following KTG in all its shift!
      BTW: Enough is enough and that’s enough after 5-6 years of austerity…

      • That comment from Jan made me plow through the KTG archive and it made me curious:
        Since you shifted the tone through the years do YOU think the matters that were the center of KTG in the beginning are solved?

        • keeptalkinggreece

          nothing has been solved after 5 years of bailout adjustment program and debt increase. therefore, change of approach to the Greek problem is needed.

          • What do you expect?
            3-4 decades of debt aggregation cannot be resolved in 5 years of austerity.

          • Well I guess the Greeks did expect, with good reason that they would not have to starve.

            For me that is a thing that we as the european partners should be concerned with. Of course they need to fulfill their financial obligations towards us, but at least we could allow them to help the starving people.

    • The real problem, and this is the same all over the “developed” world is fractional reserve banking.

      Fractional reserve banking is what allows a small number of “elites” to control all the people. It’s what makes the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. It’s what causes financial crisis like in 2008 and crisis in Greece now.

    • I think the story is rather much more banal than a war – it seems to be just a trivial alternative: to lend or not to lend more money to Greece (or creditors of Greece – Greeks will not see much of this money, of course). And for Tsipras : to accept the conditions of Troika (oops, sorry, of the Institutions) or … (here the story starts being very interesting – what is after or…)
      Hm, so Germany and France and IMF maybe will give to the Greeks money that will allow to repay the Greek debt to … Germany and France and IMF. This is a funny problem : should they lend the money to get it again or not ?
      But honestly, I like somehow this militaristic and warlike style of presentation – it is bringing some amusement to visitors of the blog.