Varoufakis: I Won’t Support Tsipras, But I Hope We’ll Remain Friends

Varoufakis_Supreme CourtGreece’s outspoken former finance minister Yanis Varoufakis said that he will not support SYRIZA and Alexis Tsipras in the upcoming elections, but he hopes they will remain friends.

Speaking to CNBC on Friday morning, Varoufakis said he doesn’t believe in the third bailout program Greece has signed and he cannot support the party that signed the deal. “I can’t look my voters in the eyes and tell them to support a failed policy,” he said.

Regarding his work with Tsipras, Varoufakis said: “I wish him the best and I continue to consider him a friend. I hope our friendship remains, despite our political differences. If that doesn’t happen, then we would have failed on a human level.”

When asked about the now infamous Plan B, Varoufakis replied that he never planned to pull Greece out of the euro nor did the Greek government. “We couldn’t do that. What we could do though, was to formulate a plan that would give us a “breathing” period of liquidity inside the euro when the Europeans would decide to close our banks. And that’s what we did,” he said.

Varoufakis said that in essence Plan B was preparing for the worst case scenario. “We had to be prepared for the worst. Not that we wished for the worst to come.”

The former minister blamed creditors for their hard stance. “The other side did not want a viable solution. They wanted to deprive us of liquidity and we tried to form a plan that would increase liquidity in order to stay in the euro, not to leave the euro. Under that plan, when the banks would close, we would survive for a reasonable period of time so that negotiations would recommence.”


  1. If Varoufakis did not support a Memorandum, why was he negotiating one for so long, and if he believed in the drachma from the outset, why was he supposedly defending Greece remaining in the Euro?

    The Europeans were ready to help us on much easier terms. It is Varoufakis that sank Greece into this mire through his conceited attitude and his insistence on giving lessons to people who understood the issues much better than him.

    That he is now considered persona non grata on the world stage is no problem, good riddance, but that he undermined the nation’s credibility and brought us and the banks to the brink of despair is not acceptable. May he be gone from the political scene forever more.

  2. This guy will say anything to stay relevant. Newsflash Varoufakis: no one likes nor cares about you. GO AWAY.

  3. Ridiculous accusations and conclusions.
    And if you believe that Troika/Quadriga is seriously willing to help Greece, you need your head examined.
    Their goal is a leveraged buy-out of Greece.

  4. Yanis Varoufakis usually speaks perfect idiomatic English as a result of his long residence in England, Australia and the USA.
    In the above article, you quote him saying: “… when the Europeans would decide to close our banks.” This is wrong. A native speaker would say “… when (if?) the Europeans decided to close our banks.” In a sentence where something happens depending on something else happening, (a conditional sentence), the main clause stating the result may contain “would”, but the subordinate clause which expresses the condition never contains “would”, but is shifted back a tense compared to the main clause. In the example, main clause is in the present, the subordinate clause in the past, and both refer to something which will (might?) take place in the future.
    This is a common error made by foreigners, especially Germans. When I was teaching English in Germany years ago, I spent ages trying to ensure my students understood this point. To no avail. Because their teachers. without exception, made the same error.
    I have never heard Varoufakis make an uncorrected error in his many online videos, so I suspect he has been misquoted here.

  5. His next career will require him wearing pointed ears a toupee and knowledge of Vulcan…..;-)

  6. Yes, they are willing to help. why else do you think that citizens just like you and me from all over Europe are sacrificing their income in order to send it to us?
    I have friends in France, Germany, Finland .. they are ALL paying for us and instead of showing some gratitude, we spend our time writing silly, ignorant slogans like your contribution above. It is shameful and I am often embarrassed as a Greek to read such things.

  7. Utter nonsense, Prof. Varoufakis was the strong link in a very weak chain in the negotiations, recent revelations prove that the EU committee tried to undermine Prof. Varoufakis because he knew what he was doing. Indeed, they told Tsipras that they didn’t want him there, in effect saying..”If he plays-I won’t play”..astonishing behaviour from the EU ministers. Tsipras is a spineless coward who gave up the soverignty of our country, and if you truly believe the Troika and the creditors have the best interests of Greece at heart…you are seriously deluded. Every toxic loan from Germany and France went to Greece. 9 out of 10 euros lent to Greece go back to the EU banks, we are left with 1 euro to run the economy, and are told to sell our utilities and Island to German private firms(ie: the airports)..86 billion Euros debt and roughly 6 million eligible tax payers. Do the math…any fool can see that this is IMPOSSIBLE to pay back. You are delusional if you truly believe the EU has helped Greece. Why would the Germans buy out the debt from the private banks and transfer this to state run banks..?..they built a firewall and sacrificed a generation of Greeks for their banks. A recent study calculated that Germany had profited by over 100 billion dollars on the Greek crisis….Wake up and study the facts, Greece needs to get back it’s sovereignty. bring back the Drachma, and get out of the toxic union that is bleeding us to death.

  8. You really are delusional and are in complete denial of the facts. I think I see your right wing sentiments showing around your red neck

  9. I would vote for Prof. Varoufakis ANY day over Nea Democratia or PASOK, or ANY party, that for last thirty years has lied and stolen from the Greek people. SYRIZA was the BEST option, based on their pledges. Tsipras turned out to be a right wing clone who helped the right wing opposition in both countries..(Greece and Germany). Prof. Varoufakis was the only intelligent technocrat, who knew what he was doing..the Germans also recognized this..and undermined his ability in the negotiations, Tsokolatos the new Fin Minister was a push over and easy pickings for the Germans….news flash..not only is Prof. Varoufakis staying in Greek Politics, but God willing, he will one day lead Greece out of the toxic EU Zone.

  10. A vote for varoufakis us a wasted vote! He supports no one and only has unworkable theories. He wants to be a professional politician.

  11. The ECB on the order of Eurogroup closed down the Greek banking system by cutting off ELA. Therefore the Europeans closed the banks and shocked the world through this action.

    Tsipras was forced to impose capital controls to prevent the greek banks from crashing.

  12. There is so much wrong with what you said. Where to begin?

    “SYRIZA was the BEST option, based on their pledges.”
    It is never a good idea to base your vote solely on what magic things a politician says he is going to do. And in Syriza’s case, there was never any serious plans and all they offered were meaningless promises (or pledges as you call them).

    “Tsipras turned out to be a right wing clone who helped the right wing opposition in both countries.”
    And can you guess who was calling out not only Tsipras but all of Syriza as a sham anti austerity from the beginning? Golden Dawn. And let me save you the disappointment right now and let you know that the rebels of Popular Unity are not going to be any different.

    “Prof. Varoufakis was the only intelligent technocrat, who knew what he was doing..the Germans also recognized this..and undermined his ability in the negotiations”

    I’ll give you this much: Varoufakis is smart man when it comes to economics and game theory and what not. I’ll even agree that the other Economic ministers were and are bullheaded. But to say Varoufakis knew what he was doing is an absolute joke. He doesn’t know the first thing about negotiating or leading in any serious fashion. The guy belongs in a college campus, arguing with all the other crackpot marxists. He does not belong in any position of power.

    “Prof. Varoufakis staying in Greek Politics”
    God help us if he is any position of power ever again.

  13. You have obviously been misinformed.
    Euro group has no power over the ECB otherwise capital controls would have been applied much earlier. Just after Feb 20th would have made more sense and saved Greece from the bank recapitalisation that it now faces and the destruction of the Greek small business economy which we about to see over the next few months. No wonder Tsprisas wants an election by Sept 20th; thanks to him the true cost of his adventures don’t kick in until October.
    Also ELA is a credit line limited to bank assets. That asset list includes deposits. When the enevitable bank run started in January following Tsipras’s election, withdrawals by Greeks steadily increased to to a point where assets decreased to the point where the ELA credit limit was reached which automatically forced him, not the ECB or the Eurogroup, to impose capital controls.
    For your information, all 4 Greek banks have been technically bankrupt for years. I suggest you might wish to thank the ECB for allowing the Greek people to draw 40 billion Euros out of the system for eight months from an already crashed greek banking system.

  14. It is the Greeks that sent their money abroad (billions of Euros), not the foreigners, and it is they who will return it to buy out Greece on the cheap
    Surely this is easy to understand, whatever politics one believes in.
    We cannot go through life wearing shields over our eyes like horses do in order not to see what goes on at each side.

    PS. it’s strange, but any comment regarding the billions sent abroad is always censored and removed by the administrators .. are we so ashamed to face the truth. These are the people that will return their money and buy Greece on the cheap, not the foreign satans.

  15. Love what you write about Varoufakis .. at last some common sense in these discussion pages.

    I try to be critical on occasion, taking care never to be offensive, yet my remarks often get censored and removed. It is a shame that we Greeks are not open to dialogue and self criticism, it is so distant from our origins in which we take such pride. Some people should should read Plato to refresh their memory.

  16. Return to the drachma.
    Do you really want Greeks to earn 30euro a month for a generation?
    Take a close look at the Cuban economy because that is where sudden exit from the euro will take Greece.

    For Greece to successfully return to the drachma Greece needs around 40 billion euro cash in foreign exchange AND a stable growing economy to support the transition for the drachma to float successfully. Now for the paradox, if Greece was in this position there would be no need for the drachma.

  17. The main point is to always be sure you are attacking the person’s argument and not the person himself. So long as you do not resort to ad-hominem attacks, there is in almost all cases no excuse for censorship. This type of thing is important to remember whenever you see either the media or government itself attempting to silence Golden Dawn.

    In what is now the most recent example, they have not been invited to a simple debate. The very fact that they would prevent a group from entering a conversation reflects the lack of, in your words “open dialogue and self criticism.” Them simply not being allowed to be there says many things about the people who oppose them and this is regardless of whether or not you like Golden Dawn.

  18. You’re probably right. Venezuela had 30 billion in foreign reserves but also had loads of oil.

  19. It is the Greeks Danae that removed their money abroad from Greece and will come back to buy it cheap .. not the foreigners.