Greece, officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country in Southern Europe. Modern Greece traces its roots to the civilization of ancient Greece, generally considered the cradle of Western civilization. As such it is the birthplace of democracy, Western philosophy and the Olympic Games. Greece was part of the Byzantine Empire from around 395 A.D. to 1453 A.D. and after that it was part of the Ottoman Empire, or until 1821. The modern Greek state had its origins in the Greek War of Independence (1821 – 1832). Greece has 11.3 million inhabitants (m.i) in a country covernig 132.000 square kilometers (51.000 square miles). The population is ethnically homogenous. Greece has borders with Albania (3.2 m.i.), the Republic of Macedonia (2.0 m.i.) and Bulgaria (7.6 m.i) to the north, and Turkey (71.0 m.i.) to the east. The Aegean Sea lies to the east of mainland Greece, the Ionian Sea to the west, and the Mediterranean Sea to the south. Greece has the 11th longest coastline in the world at 13.700 km (8,500 mi) in length, featuring over 1.400 islands - one fifth of which is inhabited. Eighty percent of Greece consists of mountains, of which Mount Olympus is the highest at 2,917 m (9,570 ft). Athens is the nation‘s capital and largest city. Greece is a developed country with a high income level (€21.900 per capita) in a global comparison and amounting to 91% of the average level of the EU (€24.000). The income is twice the amount of the poorest EU member state, Bulgaria (€10.700), but only a third of the richest, Luxembourg (€66.000). The distribution of income is one of the most unequal in the EU. Greece is a member of the European Union since 1981 and the Euro-Area since 2001. It is the largest economy of the Balkans but less than one third of the size of the Turkish economy. At the same time, there is a less flattering side to the economy, which is discussed below.
Founding of modern Greece
The culture of Greece has evolved over thousands of years, beginning in Mycenaean Greece, continuing most notably into Classical Greece, through the influence of the Roman Empire and its Greek Eastern successor the Byzantine Empire. Other cultures and states such as Latin and Frankish states, the Ottoman Empire, the Venetian Republic, Genoese Republic, and British Empire have also left their influence on modern Greek culture, but historians credit the Greek War of Independence with revitalising Greece and giving birth to a single entity of its multi-faceted culture. The first revolt of the Greek War of Independence began on 6 March 1821 in the Danubian Principalities, but it was soon put down by the Ottomans. As the civil war dragged on assistance arrived from several European powers, Russia, United Kingdom and France against the Ottoman Empire. With the Treaty of London on 3 February 1830, Greece was recognized as an independent State. However, it did not have a government until one year later. After years of negotiation, Greece was finally recognized as an independent nation with set borders in May 1832. As co-guarantors of the monarchy, the Great Powers also agreed to guarantee a loan of 60 million francs to the new king, empowering their ambassadors in the Ottoman capital to secure the end of the war. Under the protocol signed on 7 May 1832 between Bavaria and the protecting powers, Greece was defined as a "monarchical and independent state" but was to pay an indemnity to the Ottoman Porte. One historian notes that while the creation of the state was a success the ideals of a Greek nation, within and beyond the borders of Greece, were not realised.
Birth of modern Greece
A very plausible candidate for a national horoscope for Greece has come to light. The date is January 13, 1822 and the place is Epidaurus, Greece (37N38, 23E08). The event is the formal written declaration of independence from the Turks by the Greek assembly. The astrological significance of this event was first recognised by Greek astrologer Thomas Gazis, who rectified the time to 10.00 a.m. on that day giving 26° Aquarius rising (sidereal) and introduced the horoscope thus:
"Which is Greece’s birth date? Some 20 years ago it came to my attention the copy of an old document, that I felt very significant! It was entitled «Declaration of the Political Existence and Independence of the Greek Nation». Let us see what this document says: «In the name of the Holy and Indivisible Trinity, the Greek Nation that in the last 4 centuries has been under the horrible Turkish rule, unable to bear any more the heavy and unprecedented tyranny, which we have finally thrown off with huge sacrifices, proclaims today - through its legitimate delegates here assembled - in front of all humans and God, its political existence and Independence! Epidaurus January 1st 1822 [in the Julian calendar]». There is no doubt that this declaration constitutes the birth certificate of modern Greece! It fulfils all the criteria we set up and unambiguously states the creation of the modern country of Greece. The birthday of Greece is on the 13th of January [in the Gregorian calendar]." 
Horoscope of Greece
26° Aquarius rises in the ascendant of this tentative horoscope of Greece. This sign would be expected to describe the main traits in the collective personality of the nation. Aquarius is an air sign and is ruled by Saturn. This sign signifes dutifulness and responsibility. Those with Aquarius in the first house tend to be independent and willing to buck the trend if they think it is the right thing to do. The sign impels towards industriousness, perserverance, focus and forethought. There is an urge to help the underdog. The sign predisposes to new ideas, with an emphasis on humanity and science. The sign can also predispose to unconventional, stubborn, rigid or impractical ideas. If Saturn is weak in the chart there may be a tendency for suspiciousness and lethargy. Aries, ruled by Mars, falls into the third house of this horoscope. This gives a tendency for a focus on communications and new ideas. Libra, ruled by Venus, falls into the 9th house, which promises good fortune. By comparison, Cancer rises in the ascendant of the USA horsocope, giving a regal and caring nature to the collective personality of Americans. Virgo rises in the British horoscope imbuing the collective personality with analytical acuity and discrimination. Taurus rises in the horoscope of India, giving a earthy and sensate nature to the collective personality.
As Aquarius is in the 1st house of the Greek horoscope, the financial position is seen to be ruled by the following houses and their lords:
- 6th lord Moon indicates financial position.
- 9th lord Venus indicates fortune.
- 11th lord Jupiter indicates income and hopes.
- 8th lord Mercury indicates easy gains.
Saturn as 1st lord is placed in the 2nd house, giving status associated with the self. As Saturn is in old age, the dynamism is reduced. Moreover, the status is linked to ancient things, as that is a general indication of Saturn. Further, as Saturn is in the most effective point (MEP, or near the rising degree) of the 2nd house, its influence is greater. It is thus favourably influencing also the 4th house of assets, the 8th house of easy gains and 11th house of income. The influence is further helped by the good placement of 9th lord Venus in the 1st house of self. While Rahu, the lord of manipulation, is also there, bringing some problems, its influence is minimal in the horoscope.
6th lord Moon is badly placed in the 8th house, creating obstructions for the financial position. This placement will be tested in the coming five months.
9th lord Venus is well placed in the 1st house, receiving an aspect from Mars as 3rd lord of initiative in the 7th house of foreign agreements. Good luck is seen for Greece from an enterprising tourism sector and foreign involvements.
11th house Jupiter is well placed in the 3rd house of initiative. However, its power is very limited as it is in deep infancy. Fortunately, Jupiter is conjunct the 1st lord Saturn and is within the MEP of the 2nd house, also giving a moderate beneficial influence on the 2nd house of wealth, but also on the 6th house of financial position and conflict, 8th house of easy gains, and 10th house of position in the world. However, Jupiter is further undermined by an afflicting aspect from Ketu in the 7th house. Jupiter‘s 11th house is further afflicted by 8th lord Mercury, creating obstructions and endings for income and hopes. Mercury also afflicts the 5th house of speculation. Mercury is also harmed by its own destructive power, being placed in the MEP. Hence, the easy gains are reduced. The horoscope is running the Mercury-Mercury period since August 2011, suggesting that obstructions and endings involving incomes & hopes and speculation & management have intensified since then.
The strength of Jupiter and Sun, the dual indicators of banking, is not good at all in this chart. This is consistent with what we know about the the Greek banks: they are technically bankrupt but have been kept afloat by loans from the EU. The 11th lord Jupiter, Sun and Moon are the indicators of currency strength in this horoscope. The drachma was always a weak currency and if Greece were forced to leave the Euro-Area and take up the drachma again, it would likely collapse in value. The weakness of Sun and Moon, the indicators of government also suggest weakness on this front. In fact, the present administration of professionals has been appointed without democratic legitimacy to clean up years of accounting gimmicks and bad governance. As the Moon is also representing democratic government, the coming stationary aspect of Ketu in the 4th house of communal harmony suggests sudden upset over this state of affairs, the lack of democratic legitimacy. There are elections now scheduled for April 2012, when the aspect of transit Ketu to natal Moon will be applying. Ketu rules a sense of isolation and estrangement, which can result in sudden violent or unexpected acts.
3rd lord Mars is well placed in the 7th house in mutual aspect with the lord of luck, which is a very helpful combination. It gives fortune from taking action and gives opportunities for the same. It is a good aspect for the military, police and athletes and artists and women. However, the beneficience of this yoga is somewhat reduced by the bad placement of 7th lord Sun in the 12th house of losses. The weakness of the Sun suggests foreign agreements can lead to losses. The placement of Mars explains the Greek show of military bravery even in the face of being massively outnumbered.
The Economy and its problems
Greece's main industries are tourism, shipping, industrial products, food and tobacco processing, textiles, chemicals, metal products, mining and petroleum. Tourism accounts for around 15% of the national GDP, with close to 20 million foreign visitors in 2009. The shipping industry has also been a successful sector in the economy. Greek agriculture employs 12% of the total labor force and produces 3.6% of the national GDP. The big secret of Greek economy is that with EU funds, civil service jobs have increased sharply. Apparently, the development aid and loans have raised the income level above its natural state. This seems to be the reason behind the fact that there is little impetus for people to plan for their future and there seems to be a lack of vision for the country by the politicians. The Greek economy has suffered from external imbalances, which is traced to a lack of flexibility in both product and labour markets. There is a lack of innovation, such that overall productivity growth is sub-standard. As a result, inflation has been higher in Greece than in the euro area, which explains the erosion of competitiveness. Unemployment, especially of the young, is very high in Greece. Greeks are well educated by international standards. Nevertheless, there are labour shortages in specific sectors. It seems the Greeks are not educating themselves for the jobs on offer. Due to labour market rigidities, the reallocation of labour between sectors keeps unemployment high. The problem could be linked to skill mismatches, between the skills in supply and what skills the firms need. Incomes in Greece are fairly low compared to many other well to do EU countries. The dispersion of incomes in Greece is also wide. In other words, there is a high degree of income inequality. There is a link between the two, such that the greater the inequality the lower the income level. Such a situation breeds discontent and extremism in the social outlook. The labour force participation is low by EU standards, especially of women.  .
In 1981 Greece joined the EU. With the Maastricht Treaty, EU structural funds have flowed into the Greek economy with the aim to lift its low income level and bring it closer to the EU average. On January 1, 2002, the Euro replaced the drachma as the currency in circulation in Greece. In 2004 December, the European Commission issued a formal warning after Greece was found to have falsified budget deficit data in the run-up to joining Euro-Area. On April 22, 2010, Greece announced that its budget deficit figures for 2009 had been underestimated, with the deficit and debt levels increasing significantly. The revelation caused the debt crisis in the Euro-Area to sharply deepen. Such problems are consistent with the influence of Mercury in the horoscope and the weakness of Sun and Moon, indicating poor governance of the country.
Debt crisis and civil unrest
Greece also has a history of borrowing large amounts of funds abroad. This is reflecting the good fortune seen in the horoscope for Greece from international involvements. At the same time, there are problems linked to the debt and Greece's international obligations. The debt crisis is not only linked to bad management of public finances but importantly it is linked to the government support of a failing banking system. However, the associated rise in debt made fiscal austerity ever more important to assure international creditors that the government could service its debts. In January 2010, the government announced a second round of tough austerity measures, including public sector pay cuts, fuel increases, and a crackdown on tax evasion. In February 2010, the government austerity measures prompted a series of general strikes and protests that continued into March. In March 2010, PM George Papandreou likened the budget crisis to "wartime situation", announcing a third round of tax rises and spending cuts totaling €5 billion. In April/May 2010, fears of a possible default on Greece's debts prompted Euro-Area countries to approve a €110 billion rescue package for the country. As part of the bailout deal, PM Papandreou announced a round of even more stringent austerity measures. Trade unions called a general strike in protest. In October 2010, the government announced new, tougher, austerity measures in the 2011 draft budget, including new taxes and higher rate of VAT. In February 2011, international lenders said austerity measures so far implemented did not go far enough, and that Greece must speed up reforms to get its finances back on track. In June 2011, there was another 24-hour general strike. Tens of thousands of protesters marched on parliament to oppose government efforts to pass new austerity laws. In July 2011, the crisis began to deepen. European Union leaders agreed a major bailout for Greece over its debt crisis by channeling €109 billion through the European Financial Stability Facility. The solution assumed “voluntary writedowns“ of the debt held by private banks, which ended up being equivalent to 70%. All three main credit ratings agencies cut Greece's rating to a level associated with a substantial risk of default. In September 2011, the credit rating agency Moody's downgraded eight Greek banks due to concerns over Greece's ability to pay back its debts. In October 2011, Eurozone leaders and private banks agreed to a 50% debt write-off for Greece in return for further austerity measures. PM Papandreou cast the deal into doubt by announcing a referendum on the rescue package. In November 2011, faced with a storm of criticism over his referendum plan, Mr. Papandreou withdrew it and announced his resignation. A government of national unity was formed after talks between leaders of the governing Socialist Pasok, the center-right New Democracy party and the nationalist Laos party. Lucas Papademos, a former head of the Bank of Greece, became interim prime minister with the task of getting the country back on track in time for elections scheduled provisionally for the spring of 2012. In January 2012, debt rescheduling talks with Greece's private creditors faltered, endangering the €130 billion EU/IMF rescue package that Greece needs to meet its next debt repayment deadline in March. In February 2012, against a background of violent protests on the streets of Athens, the Greek parliament approved a new package of tough austerity measures agreed with the EU as the price of a €130 billion bailout. At the same time, political determination to avoid the stigma of default appears to have waned as the Greek government retroactively inserted collective-action clauses into the bond terms, suggesting the government will demand further writedowns. As a consequence, Standard & Poor’s and Moody's downgraded the nation's credit rating in late February and early March 2012 implying the government is officially in default. The Greek economy has been in recession for five years and the ongoing cutbacks in public services and benefits in recent years have resulted in recurring bouts of civil unrest, sometimes violent.
Astrology of significant historical events
DEFEAT IN WAR
During World War II, Greece was invaded and conquered by the axis powers. Perhaps the most dramatic event was the fall of Athens, which took place on 27 April 1941. The Sun-Venus period was operating. Transit stationary Ketu at 8° 25‘ Pisces and transit stationary Rahu at 8° 25‘ Virgo and 8th house were conjunct natal 6th lord Moon at 10° 31‘ Virgo. 8th lord Mercury at 3° Aries and 3rd house was afflicted by natal Ketu at 4° Leo and 7th house. Transit 7th lord Sun and transit 9th lord Venus were conjunct in the 3rd house, along with transit 6th lord Moon and transit 1st lord Saturn in the MEP. The Moon major period began in August 1941, which is consistent with Greece being under military occupation as Moon rules the 6th house of conflict. Moreover, Moon is placed in the 8th house of obstacles and this period involved much suffering by the Greek population. The occupation ended in October 1944, when the Jupiter sub-period was underway.
The outlook in coming months is anything but hopeful. In the horoscope, 6th lord Moon, which rules financial stability, is placed in the 8th house, suggesting that debt becomes a source of obstructions and endings. The coming station of transit Ketu at 10° 20' Taurus and 4th house, in aspect to natal Moon at 10° 30' Virgo and 8th house, promises to bring sudden, explosive events to Greece, involving the debts. As Moon is also the general indicator of the public mood, and is placed in the house of the belief of the public in its government, we may expect a violent rupture in this regard in coming months. As the Moon is a royal planet, it become the kings consort in the royal cabinet. Hence, this will likely be a very challenging time for the government.
As for the continued membership of the Greece in the Euro, that will certainly continue to be tested. It is good that natal 1st lord Saturn is not being tested in the forthcoming transits. Moreover, the cost of such a setback to the EU also needs to be considered. I have earlier predicted based on the tentative horoscope for the EU that "It would not surprise me if the EU would be down-scaled and its goals revised in the coming few years." However, it is hard to say if this involves Greece leaving the Euro zone, as there could be significant costs involved in that for other member countries. At present, I find it likelier that Greece continues in the Euro, by hook or crook, by being helped to avoid bankruptcy, in name at least, and thus be able to continue in the Euro-Area. The risk of some sort of social meltdown in Greece is, however, likely this summer. A new government could come to power later in the year and it could then decide to revise the country's foreign agreements and obligations. This, however, is all quite speculative.
“The chart can be considered for future predictions. Weakness of Jupiter and affliction to the eleventh house by a Rahu like planet speaks for the general belief of the people. Weak Sun and the Moon also speak for lack of organisation. As currently the sub period of Mercury is running in the main period of Mercury the outlook for Greece is not good.“
This horoscope seems to reflect well the events of Greek national life. At the same time, it does not paint a hopeful picture for the financial or political position of Greece in the summer of 2012 when the Mercury-Mercury period is operating and difficult transits are felt. Venus, Mars and Saturn are the helpful planets in this horoscope. Their placements suggest some amount of comforts, fortune, energy and status - all of which is consistent with what we know about life in Greece. Barring challenging transits, the Venus sub-period from January 2015, promises a fortunate change of events.
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*) BBC Timeline of Greek developments: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/1014812.stm