Greece’s Trump Card, Russia’s Ace
Speculation of Greece’s exit from the Euro mounts every day. Corps are pulling their cash holdings out daily now. There is an ongoing bank run being conducted over the Internet as we write this.
High drama no doubt but not the focus of this piece. Has anybody thought about what happens next?? Oh yes the Drachma will rise again, but that is already baked. No. Anybody thought about the political situation?? Greece had elections and could not agree to a coalition government so they are having elections again. But what if no government can be formed? What then?
The Dog’s food bowl, paltry as it is, says Russia steps in. Nothing gaudy as tanks or planes. The logistics are not favorable, just like they are not for America to assist Georgia. But they will step up to shouldering the propping up of the Drachma and attempting to forge political and economic ties. And why would Russia do this?
1) Geopolitical. It would be favorable to Russia to have at least one favorable partner leaning against one edge of the Bosphorus Strait. Turkey is increasingly drifting into the Islamic sphere and becoming less cooperative with Moscow. Its a hedge.
2) The bigger one is religious. Scratch out the 80 years of the Communist Mistake and one sees a huge interlink between the Greek and Russian Orthodox Church. Whereas the Greeks were the fountain of the ROC, Russia of yesterday and today sees its role as the muscular son protecting the mother religion. On that basis alone Russia will see a humanitarian interest in Greece distinct from its geopolitical concerns.
Some will say Putin the strongman won’t care. I beg to differ. I watch the Easter Procession with my wife every year on TV. Putin has not missed a procession since he first became president the last time around. The man knows the power of the ROC in his country and he follows behind dutifully.
Russia will make it’s move within months after the Greek exit. All I can say is — watch for it.