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Not the same codes, not the same referents, not the same ways of behaving … To say that ‘there is a’ clash Varoufakis’ on stage very “civilized” major European bankers. And this “culture shock” will again Friday, February 20 in the afternoon, one of the key elements of the Eurogroup meeting (the body that brings together the finance ministers of the euro area), which must decide what action to give the Greek request for an extension of the aid plan which Athens has
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“If he had had a more conciliatory attitude, less arrogant, he might have already won, the green light to an extension of the aid plan,” slips a European senior source about the Finance Minister Alexis Tsipras, hours before the start of the third Eurogroup high voltage on Greece, Friday, Feb. 20.
In Brussels, the attitude of the Greek-Australian, brilliant economist, ultra-present on social networks is considered aggressive. And considering that it did not help, in recent days, with the resolution of the conflict between Greece and the rest of Europe on the renegotiation of the huge debt of the country.
It plays, at least today, as a foil for the German finance minister, Wolfgang Schäuble, who obviously has no confidence in his Greek counterpart, and indicated abruptly Thursday 19 February, he rejected demand of Athens, to extend the Europeans aid plan.
A publicized tour missteps resounding
The first “faux pas” awarded Mr. Varoufakis is the hospitality extended to the Dutch Jeroen Dijsselbloem, just four days after his appointment as Minister in Athens. The President of the Eurogroup (the body that brings together the finance ministers of the euro area) had nevertheless taken the first step, by “rushing” in the Greek capital, to make contact with this new minister wishing “redefine the deal between Greece and its creditors. “
The interview was ” constructive “ by Mr Dijsselbloem entourage. But the final press conference was calamitous. Before the Greek cameras, Mr. Varoufakis announced, without warning, “the end of the troika” , the body that represents the country’s creditors (European Central Bank, European Commission, International Monetary Fund) . He even took the liberty of making fun of the Netherlands, live. A slight, very badly in Brussels and the Netherlands.
Following the tour of European capitals conducted by Mr. Varoufakis, starting with London, has also been little appreciated. Too “show off”. Too noisy. Too many tweets. Too many cameras … Proposals also all round to renegotiate the debt, but nothing concrete on the table, it remarks in Brussels.
The fact that Mr. Varoufakis end this crazy week in Berlin Instead of having started there, while Germany is by far the largest creditor of Greece, also cringe. As the remarks during a press conference with Mr Schäuble, one facing camera confessing: “ We are agreed on the fact that we do not agree .” And Greek, very comfortable, replying: “ we are not even agreed on the failure to agree …”
A” look “serving
The very rock look of Mr. Varoufakis, meanwhile Bruce Willis – shaved head, athletic build, open shirt and jacket collar turned – with air get in the ring every time he comes to the meetings of the Eurogroup, the dessert too.
His European counterparts, experienced in this highly codified exercise of ministerial meetings have difficulty accepting the About intruders and deemed too “faculty” . “It’s a lesson to his counterparts instead of giving figures, concrete things,” denounce several European sources. Who do not understand this attitude, while “it was the Greeks who need us, not the opposite. “
Trust was initiated at the first meeting of the Eurogroup to which Mr. Varoufakis, 11 February. Nearly six hours discussing. For nothing. The Minister had reneged on its agreement at the last moment, after a phone call to Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, while Mr. Schäuble had already left for Berlin, thinking that a compromise had been reached.
Leaks organized by the Greek delegation in the press room at the second Eurogroup, Monday, February 16, are also gone wrong. A “draft” agreement was generously distributed to journalists, the Greeks explaining that it was a text proposed by the European Commissioner for Economic Affairs, Pierre Moscovici, Mr Varoufakis was prepared to accept, but This text was rejected in favor of a draft much harder to Mr. Dijsselbloem.
This version of events was challenged by the European Commission and the rest of the Eurogroup. “None text has been officially discussed, this is not a way to negotiate, “ testified several European sources afterwards. “The Germans are exasperated,” for his part emphasized a diplomat.
Criticism that mask a share of bad faith
Behind the accusations against Mr Varoufakis, there sometimes a share of bad faith. In Brussels, the one points “lack of preparation” Mr Varoufakis and its teams, the fact that they come in meeting “ almost records” “ without numbers. “
But we admit that with only fifteen days to three weeks of preparation, with a director of the treasure that has also changed in recent weeks, it is logically very Mr. Varoufakis difficult not to make some odd
Officials and the European political readily admit. European matter is complicated decisions are made at 19 (in Eurogroup), or 28 (the European Council). Even European Commissioners when they arrive on the job, need a few weeks or a few months to understand the springs of the Brussels office.
Mr. Varoufakis anticipating undoubtedly the German resistance. But he did not necessarily measured the positions adopted by the government as ail the Austrian, Latvian, Estonian, Slovak or …
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The Eurogroup meeting on Friday 20 February, which must rule on the request for an extension of the plan to help the Greeks, promises to be, once again, very tight for the Greek Minister.
On Thursday night on his Twitter account, Mr. Varoufakis said he had gone to see, two days earlier, that is to say in the aftermath of the Eurogroup of 16 February the piece Happy Days , Samuel Beckett, at the National Theatre in Athens. “A comfort compared to you know what …” , has he wrote. It will certainly need Friday.