There’s an interesting historical reason why it might be tough for Germany to play hardball with Greece — German-imposed Greek austerity has a charged past:Marginal Revolution:
In the first year of the German occupation of Greece, austerity and “wage cuts” were imposed on the economy; at least 300,000 Greeks died of hunger. … The IMF, on the other hand, can’t override EU strictures on currency policy and on fiscal policy. Who then will play tough guy with Greece?
France? Doubtful. Greece could get off relatively easy.
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