By Fareed Zakaria
"Any economist will tell you that part of the reason the economy hasn't recovered more quickly and that consumers and businesses aren't spending is that they're scared," argues Ezra Klein. "They're scared that the economy will crater again, that the euro zone will fall apart, that Bank of America will go down, that we'll dip back into recession. And Washington is scaring them further. At a time when our politicians might be called upon to solve extraordinarily difficult problems, they can't even be trusted to pay the bills."
“The bulk of Greek debt is now in the hands of official creditors, and many thought that with elections in the rearview mirror Germany would show some flexibility – after all, Merkel strongly opposed the private sector restructuring until she turned around and made it happen,” writes
Charles Wyplosz for Bloomberg. “In brief, the time has clearly come for creditor countries to forgive part of Greece’s debt, because nobody believes that the government can bring it to a sustainable level on its own.”
“The Egyptian army has intensified the blockade along Egypt’s single short border with Gaza. Over the past weeks, the army has destroyed hundreds of tunnels through which Palestinians smuggle fuel and other necessities in short supply because of Israel’s siege,” writes
Jonathan Cook in The National
. “Egypt has established a 'buffer zone,' as Israel did inside Gaza a decade ago when it was still occupying the enclave directly, to prevent more tunnels being dug.”
“That has plunged Gaza’s population into hardship and dealt a severe blow to the tax revenues Hamas raises on the tunnel trade. Unemployment is rocketing and severe fuel shortages mean even longer power cuts.”