The topic is unescapable. Since more than a 100 publications from all around the world —including France’s Le Monde— revealed the existence of the #PanamaPapers, large scale corruption from athletes, heads of state, political parties and various crooks is back on the news.
And with good reason! The #PanamaPapers are the biggest leak in the history of leakages: a staggering 11,5 million files from the archives of Mossack Fonseca, a Panama-based firm specialized in the domiciliation of offshore companies.
Nothing new under the sun, then. Corruption being as old as time, it’s no novelty that the rich and powerful are doing their best to contribute as little as possible. What is, though, is that so many people who claim to have polar opposite values walk hand in hand and practice tax fraud to such an extent. Ukraine, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, the UAE, Georgia, Argentina, Iceland, Syria, Morocco… 128 high ranking officials from those countries and more, according to Le Monde, found a sudden love for Panama and are very motivated partners in crime.
For optics, most of them pretend to hate each other, they even make it difficult to meet one another for diplomatic talks in front of the camera. But behind closed doors, they go to the same lawyers and find themselves represented by the same firm to hide their assets.
What’s hard to swallow in that scandal is that a lot of countries are plagued by austerity measures right now. Middle classes are being squeezed out of their cash when their leaders hide billions upon billions in tax havens.
There probably will be consequences. The scandal is young, we might find out more in the coming days. Aren’t we living an interesting time?
© Panama papers