Berlin Greece has long been at the very center of the world's civilization. The land of Aristotle, classical literature and democracy, may now be an economic minnow: a peripheral European country buckling under a financial crisis, but geopolitically, it still punches way above its weight.
That is something European Union leaders will undoubtedly have at the back of their minds this week when they make a decision on its euro zone membership.
The country accounts for just 2 percent of the euro zone economy, but it also shores up the south-eastern flank of the European Union. It is the one stable anchor in the volatile Western Balkans region, where Russia is seeking to increase its influence. It also inches out into a Mediterranean that is increasingly fraught with problems and risks, from a mass movement of desperate refugees fleeing conflicts in Syria and elsewhere, to the threats of terror attacks via the failed state of Libya.
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