The problem is a "big misunderstanding," he thinks, by Germany and the Netherlands about how things work in Greece. "Just because something is made law does not mean it's going to happen."
He worries Europe is forgetting the lessons of its own history—how Germany, for example, was plunged into violence and nationalism after WWI by the draconian terms of the Treaty of Versailles. Is Germany's treatment of Greece now inviting the same outcome?
For years, Greek politician Alexis Tsipras labored on the fringes of Greek politics, writes Spiegel Online International. Today as leader of SYRIZA, or the Coalition of the Radical Left, polls rank him the second most popular politician in Greece. Wearing a black suit and purple shirt, says Spiegel, he pounded a podium with his fist during a recent rally and inveighed against "foreign loan sharks" who have only one thing on their minds: "the impoverishment of the Greek people and the sellout of our country."
"For decades," says Ruparel, "Europe has been becoming more cohesive, moving closer and closer to integration. This is the first time our interests have diverged so much. By forcing the issue with Greece, we are creating a wedge between these [debtor] countries and the rest of Europe."