"Euro is facing 'existential crisis' Merkel says"
German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Wednesday (19 May) called for tougher sanctions on deficit laggards and clear procedures for state insolvency if bail-outs do not work, as she defended her country's contribution to the €750 billion rescue package in what she called an "existential test" for the euro.
Admitting that a decision taken in 2004 to tolerate breaches of the eurozone's rules on deficits was a "big mistake", Ms Merkel vowed to push for sanctions, such as slashing EU funds and stripping voting rights, for countries who fail to get a grip on their public spending.
"The current crisis facing the euro is the biggest test Europe has faced in decades. It is an existential test and it must be overcome ... if the euro fails, then Europe fails,"
She said her government will on Friday present a set of nine measures aimed at limiting the "debt policy" of eurozone countries...
"Fears Intensify That Euro Crisis Could Snowball"
After a brief respite following the announcement last week of a nearly $1 trillion bailout plan for Europe, fear in the financial markets is building again, this time over worries that the Continent’s biggest banks face strains that will hobble European economies.
The president of the European Central Bank, Jean-Claude Trichet, in an interview published Saturday, warned that Europe was facing “severe tensions” and that the markets were fragile.
Investors fear that with many governments groaning under the weight of huge deficits, the debt of weaker nations that use the euro currency will have to be restructured, deeply lowering the value of their bonds. That would hit European financial institutions hard, and may ricochet through the global banking system.
That is not the only domino that could fall.
For example, Portuguese banks owe $86 billion to their counterparts in Spain, which in turn owe German institutions $238 billion and French banks $220 billion. American banks are also big owners of Spanish bank debt, holding nearly $200 billion, according to the Bank for International Settlements, a global organization serving central bankers.
Furthermore, financial policy makers find themselves running out of weapons in their arsenal.
After borrowing trillions to stimulate their economies and ease credit concerns during the last wave of fear in late 2008 and early 2009, governments cannot borrow trillions more without risking higher inflation and shoving aside other borrowers like individuals and companies. Short-term interest rates, already near zero in the United States, cannot be lowered any further. And vital steps like raising taxes or cutting spending increases could snuff out the beginnings of a recovery in northern Europe and worsen the pain in recession-battered economies like Spain, where unemployment recently passed 20 percent.
With the exception of wartime, “the public finances in the majority of advanced industrial countries are in a worse state today than at any time since the industrial revolution,” Willem Buiter, Citigroup’s top economist, wrote in a recent report.
European Single Currency Seen At A Turning Point"
The current international whirlwind over Greece's indebtedness has revealed the basic flaw in the single currency, namely how to coherently bridge with one monetary value the immense gap between the strongest and weakest economies of the eurozone.
But despite the packages, stock markets around the world have suffered severe falls on fears that Athens may eventually default on its international debts, and that other deeply indebted eurozone members like Spain and Portugal could fall into the same abyss.
But, looking at the broader picture, some European leaders are now saying there must be more central control over eurozone member states' fiscal policies, meaning national budgets.
Hints of a new order came from EU Monetary Affairs Commissioner Olli Rehn, who writes in a Finnish newspaper, the "Helsingen Sanomat," that in future "the development of state debt must be followed more closely than before [by Brussels], and possible downward spirals must be cut off in time."
"This calls for more regulation," Merkel said. "But unfortunately this speculation was, and is, only possible because there are considerable differences in economic strength and respective indebtedness between the member states of the euro."
A front-page article in the daily "Financial Times" on May 17 reported that Berlin is to press other eurozone countries to adopt their own versions of Germany's balanced-budget law.
If adopted by eurozone members, coupled with extra oversight by the EU at the center, the measure would bring a dramatic tightening of fiscal discipline across the bloc.
These articles underscore several important thoughts:
1. We are clearly in the middle of a world-wide financial crisis. As seen, all world-wide financial institutions are intertwined. What happens in Greece, for instance, affects all countries in the world either directly or indirectly. The same applies to the rest of the EU countries who are imminently facing collapse from the massive weight of government programs. There is no way to sustain this if these countries continue "business as usual". There just isn't enough money to recover from these huge debts and deficits, and printing more money will only lead to hyperinflation.
2. The EU is just at the beginning of their problems, as so many countries are rapidly facing the Greece crisis.
3. The U.S. is also significantly affected by these problems seen in Europe.
So what does this all mean prophetically?
It is clear from biblical prophecy that the growth of the EU will not stop - BUT - there are a couple of caveats:
We also know from biblical prophecy that the EU (aka "Revived Roman Empire") will, at some point, morph into "10 Kings".
The idea of the "10 Kings" is crystal clear and unambiguous from Daniel 2, 7 and Revelation 17, just to name a few scriptures. And looking at the order of events from Daniel's statue, we know that the 10 Kings comes AFTER the re-formation of the Roman Empire.
And it is after the formation of the 10 Kings, who's only purpose is to support the antichrist (Revelation 17:12-14), that the world domination will ensue. In fact, the Bible tells us that the antichrist comes from these 10 Kings. That is worth remembering at all times.
So the question becomes - what is the process for developing these 10 Kings, and how do they become an entity?
No one knows this answer and these details are not provided by biblical prophecy.
But the process leads to a number of obvious questions:
Given the uncertainty around how this transformation (EU-->10 Kings) takes place, any "big" development or "crisis" in the EU is worth watching, because perhaps the 10 Kings are formed out of necessity - stemming from this financial crisis(?)
Could this financial crisis lead to the formation of the 10 Kings?
Could the EU "shrink" (initially) into 10 Countries (Kings)? Perhaps those with some degree of financial security and then, from these 10 "Kings" the antichrist rises and assumes world leadership?
Will this world financial crisis lead to even more growth of the EU/Med Union?
(As seen above, in the quotes by Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel, the President of Europe's Central Bank, Jean-Claude Trichet, and the EU's Monetary Affairs Commissioner Olli Rehn - they are all calling for more control by the central EU government. This is also prophetic, as we know that individual nation's sovereignty is a thing of the past...Any greater EU domination of the various nations is both expected and increasing. The current financial crisis may simply feed the concept of centralized government.)
So there are several scenarios that could come into play, as a result of this "crisis".
We have seen first hand in the U.S. how quickly and draconian "change" can come from a "crisis", whether real or perceived. It doesn't matter. The governments of the world will use any such crisis as a rallying cry for more control. This may be the outcome in the EU: More central control.
Regardless, the bottom line is this:
There will be a huge change in the EU as things progress prophetically:
The EU will somehow morph into 10 Kings. That is a fact.
Change of this magnitude usually requires some sort of crisis to precipitate such change, and we are squarely in crisis mode around the world as this financial situation grows worsens by the day.
The bible doesn't describe a break-up of the revived Roman Empire - but it does describe a change. A change into 10 Kings, which will give "birth" to the antichrist and ultimately rule the world.
We may be in the early stages of this change. Its most certainly worth watching and watching closely.
God Bless and keep looking up - I believe our Lord and Savior is on the way.