James McCormick, a professor of political science at Iowa State University, is available to comment on the debt crisis in Greece. McCormick says the stability of the euro and the European Union is at stake making this a crisis that affects the global community.

“Witness, for example, the impact of the crisis last week when major stock markets around the world suffered 2 to 3 percent declines when it became evident that Greece would not pay its $1.72 billion debt payment by June 30. Moreover, a Greek default on its burgeoning debt, which is currently about $350 billion, would likely cause an immediate rise in global interest rates and might invite other debtor nations in Europe, such as Portugal and Italy, to follow that route as well. In this sense, it would endanger the future of the euro and the EU more generally, since most of Greece's debt is held by the EU, European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund.”

The impact of this crisis on the U.S. is more indirect, because only a limited amount is held by U.S. banks, McCormick said.

“Still, the uncertainty in the global markets and the importance of U.S. trade with Europe—about 40 percent of global trade—would affect the U.S. economy. From a national security perspective, the Greek debt crisis is also important. It affects major NATO members in southern Europe and the stability of the EU. The EU, of course, has been a major partner in dealing with Russia over Ukraine and several key members of the EU are crucial to the talks with Iran over its nuclear ambitions.”

McCormick has done numerous interviews with radio, television and print reporters and has written extensively on foreign policy issues. To arrange an interview, you can contact McCormick directly at 906-644-2395 or [email protected]. Angie Hunt in the ISU News Service office, 515-294-8986 or [email protected], can also assist with interview requests.