GREECE EXCLUSIVE: Sabotaging the other Troika in Greece’s future?

Athens sources accuse ‘Coalition partners’ of plot to sabotage alliance with Israel and Cyprus

Venizelos….Fifth Columnist?

Sources close to a senior Opposition Greek politician today accused elements within Pasok of plotting to undermine the progress of the energy and exploitation deal between Athens, Tel Aviv and Nicosia.

Extract from a recent Slogpost:

‘Everything is connected. Greece is connected to Cyprus, which is connected to Turkey – and massively connected to EU debt and the Aegean, which is connected to energy and rare earths, which is connected to Israel, which is unpleasantly connected to Syria and Iran, which are connected to the American desire for Sunnis to triumph, which is connected to the fact that Saudi Arabia is overwhelmingly Sunni.’

From the Greek mainstream newspaper Katherimini today:-

‘The governments of Greece, Cyprus and Israel will begin discussions in September about the exporting of natural gas quantities to western
European countries, Cypriot Commerce and Industry Minister Neoklis Sylikiotis announced on Thursday in Nicosia.

The Cypriot official told state RIK television that he has received a positive response to his invitation to his Greek and Israeli
counterparts for a meeting next month. Sylikiotis also said the meeting will also discuss the formation of a working group to examine the creation of common infrastructures for the electricity interconnection of the three countries of the eastern
Mediterranean. Nicosia is already expecting revenues of some 300 million euros next year from the signing of contracts with the consortiums to be chosen for the new surveys for hydrocarbons in the Exclusive Economic Zone of Cyprus.’

The other Troika – the Eastern Mediterranean Energy Exploitation Troika (EMEET) is not a daft conspiracy theory, it is a fact. It is the ace is Antonis Samaras’s hand.

So this afternoon, The Slog is asking this question: why does a tendency within Pasok stand accused by senior elements within Tsyriza of plotting to undermine EMEET?

I have an open mind on why the mischief is being made and who is making it. This is the Tsyriza-connected source’s version:

“If the deal with Israel and Cyprus goes through, the EU will be weakened in its bargaining position. If it doesn’t, Antonis Samaras has no bargaining position. A Samaras failure would damage his political position in Greece massively. Those with their noses in the Belgian and German graft trough have everything to gain from retaining a close EU relationship, everything to lose from the development of this [Cyprus/Israel/Greece] thing, and much to gain from Samaras’s failure.”

The source accused Evangelos Venizelos directly. That’s a national sport now in Greece – but on the other hand, Venizelos is and has been implicated in corruption scandals over the last decade or more in Greece. As a younger MP, he personally drafted the law to make Ministers immune from graft prosecutions.

After starting this piece, another more centrist-right source in Athens – when confronted with the story – added this:

“I’ve heard similar rumours, but have nothing in the way of serious validation….I am convinced that Pasok’s top people had ulterior motives for trying to undermine the Samaras position [on further austerity cuts] though. Venizelos in particular is a two-faced sh*t. He’s made worse cuts than that in the past, but suddenly he has a conscience. Yes, I do think he’s trying to make life hard for Samaras, and yes, everyone knows he is playing on both sides between Brussels and Athens. So it is a credible story, yes.”

If any of the usual or new Slog sources in Greece know more or wish to comment discreetly the email remains