Don’t Forsake Europe — Robert Samuelson

WASHINGTON — The European Union’s decision to rescue Greece and to create a massive financial safety net for its other vulnerable debtors is a momentous event — though success is hardly guaranteed. Contrary to popular belief, the main purpose was not to save Greece but to prevent another financial panic, a la Lehman Brothers in late 2008, that might plunge the world economy back into recession. Sagging stock prices and a falling euro are warning signs.

How could tiny Greece (population 11 million with an economy one-40th that of the United States) trigger such a dreadful chain reaction? Simple.

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