Euro Crisis

Europe Plays Blame Game on Cyprus Bank Mess

Nobody wants to take responsibility for move to tax deposits


o listen to the German and French governments, the European Central Bank and European Commission, no one was responsible for the Cypriot deposit tax that was unanimously endorsed in the early hours of March 16 and fell apart yesterday.

German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble opened the blame game on Sunday, telling ARD television that the commission, ECB and Cypriot government engineered the swoop on ordinary bank accounts and "now they have to explain it to the Cypriot people."

By then, the Cypriot people were lining up at cash machines and painting "No" on the palms of their hands to protest the levy that, even with a tax-free allowance built in for the smallest savers, didn't win a single "Yes" vote in the Cypriot parliament.