Sunday, December 28, 2014

Greece: Here we go again

 ATHENS — The long-dormant euro crisis could come roaring back to life Monday with a vote in the Greek Parliament that is expected to bring down the pro-austerity government and open the way for a radical leftist party to take power for the first time in the history of the European Union.

The vote will be watched closely around the continent as a marker of economic peril in the year ahead as Europe gazes into the abyss of another recession. But it could also be a key political milestone as the center gives way to forces that were once relegated to the European fringe and are now buoyed by a populist, anti-austerity backlash.

For Greece, the expected collapse of the government comes just as the economy here had begun to stabilize. Now, with the far-left Syriza Party forecast to win the elections that would follow at the end of January , all bets are off.

The party has vowed to halt payment on Greece’s debt until the terms of the country’s $284 billion bailout agreements can be renegotiated, and it says it will thumb its nose at international lenders by ramping up public spending.

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