It’s Not Easy Being Greek in Germany

Socratis Papastathopoulos plays soccer for the Greek national team, but also for the German team Werden Bremen as a defender, skills he has to use these days not in his game, but defending his country against animosity by many Germans.

He told German media that a barrage of negative stories about Greeks – that they are lazy, indifferent and need bailouts because they don’t like to work – hurt him and he finds himself trying to explain why the stereotype isn’t accurate.

“It is definitely hard to be Greek in Germany nowadays, especially when having so much heard about Greece. Now Germans needn’t to tell us what to do as we Greeks, we’re already aware of the fact that some things didn’t operate as they should in our country. However, things as presented in the press have nothing to do with the Greek reality,talking ’bout bad press.This problem doesn’t only concern Greece but the whole Europe as well. We were just more vulnerable to the economic crisis than others,” he said.

The international player seems to be really optimistic that the Greek national team will make the World Cup field for 2014 in Rio De Janeiro. “So far, we are doing very well in the club. Except for the talent and the experience, the national team provides a family atmosphere and all the guys will give their best shot for Greece ‘s sake so as to make Greeks proud and happy,” he said.


  1. Greece was more vulnerable because it screwed up for 40 years, because it produces nothing or little, because it is the most corrupt of all OECD countries (see Wikipedia), because its elites behaved even more shameful than in other countries and Greeks still kept voting for them. The list in endless. Why should others feel sorry or guilty? Greeks have to grow up.

  2. I agree, there is nothing to feel sorry about Greece. The country is souvereign as any other EU member and could decide to leave.

    However, democratic countries usually consist of 3 relevant powers: politicians, voters, great entrepreneurs. Therefore it is more precise to say Greek politicians screwed up.
    They introduced the country into EEC (1981) although the voters said
    “no”. Their new European competitors “invested” hundeds of millions of €
    to build their lobbies in the Athenean parliament. Imported bribery in
    Greece developed to such an extend that Greek entrepreneurs could not compete anymore. French and German companies were fighting each other on a level Greek justice had never experienced before. Germany even legalized bribery in other countries. See parliament debate 1995:

    OECD resolutions critized for many years the big European countries (and US) for fostering bribery in small countries like Greece. Unfortunately there was almost no Greek lobby in Athens and Brussels to support that because of their conflicts of interest.

    You see, it is easy to blame the loser but in this game there are more players active.

  3. The usual: Greeks blame others. Nothing will ever change until Greeks accept responsibility for their actions.

    What a laughable thought that corruption in Greece is imported. The opposite is the case. And by the way: These international companies were corrupt in Greece, not in Sweden. Or in Greece, not in France. Why: They learnt: “If in Rome, do as the Romans”. They learned that in Greece, you have to bribe a lot more than in ANY other OECD country. So they did.

  4. Greece seemed to be doing just fine before it joined the EU.
    Greece has also recently discovered that it sits upon Europe’s biggest gold deposits & Europe’s and potentialy the worlds biggest Oil & Gas deposits. We shall see how Greece is doing in 10 years time.

  5. correction. I should be more specific. I meant to say before it joined the “eurozone”.

  6. Greece wanted to join the EU, because otherwise it would have been bankrupt. Greece wanted to join the EZ, because again it had maneuvered itself into a corner. In spite of all the subsidies it had received for many years from the EU, it was effectively bankrupt again (overspending, tax-dogding, unproductive). It was in so much need to join the EZ (so it could benefit from lower interest rates and borrow more) that it lied and falsified statistics. So, joining the EU and then EZ delayed the day of reckoning for a society that was and is built on bribes, clientelism, nepotism – more than any society in Western Europe. The Greeks have to stop kidding themselves. Face the truth, please.


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