French press review 21 August 2018

A new chapter in Greece's Homerian odyssey, after some painful eight years of bailouts come to an end. And the Pope urges Catholics to stand up and weed out the "culture of death" following revelations of child sex abuse atrocities committed by US clergymen.


Greece’s financial situation emerges as the hottest issue in today's papers. This as the EU nation turned a page on Monday following eight years of harsh austerity and three international bailouts.

Le Parisien reports that the country, which saw a quarter of its GDP evaporate over eight years and unemployment soar to more than 27 percent, was rescued by a loan worth 289 billion euros from the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund.

Républicain Lorrain invites the Greek people to cheer up, as their big brothers in Brussels under the leadership of Germany have promised to continue watching over them.

But the publication warns that any further missteps, like the temptation to correct longstanding social injustices, will not serve their immediate interests.

For Le Journal de la Haute-Marne, all the talk about the self-finance capabilities of the Greek economy in the markets is meaningless.

In the daily's view, even if Greece's economy is no longer in the red, the country's unemployment rate remains at a very high 20 percent. What that means, it argues, is that the country will have to remain on some form of life support for a few more years.

Est Républicain agrees, arguing it would be pretentious to think that everything has been resolved and that Greece has seen the end of the tunnel.

The newspaper believes they need to tighten their belts a little longer. Particularly in regards to pensions and the budget, which will be subjected to heavy constraints.

The paper says only the 2019 general elections will determine whether the Greek people are ready to make the new sacrifices needed to keep the economy afloat.

And it’s not as if the crisis came tumbling on their heads by accident. So says Les Dernières Nouvelles d'Alsace. The publication points out that everyone knows the extent to which successive governments falsified state accounts and violated basic accountancy rules.

For La Presse de la Manche, the time to face the music is not yet over, as they must continue swallowing the pills even if they are more painful than the disease.

Yet another church paedophilia scandal

The Pope's condemnation of child sex abuse "atrocities" committed by clergymen in the US state of Pennsylvania is the front-page story in today's La Croix.

The Vatican letter published Monday follows last week's devastating US grand jury report decrying the abuse of thousands of children by paedophile priests and the scandal’s systematic cover-up by the Catholic Church.

According to La Croix, Francis appealed to the faithful to "fast and pray", "open our ears to the victims’ silenced pain” and “join forces in uprooting this culture of death".

La Croix says the tough battle to be waged will strengthen God's people, as long as it’s fought against clericalism and not the clergy.

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