Gideon Rachman

    has been the chief foreign affairs commentator for the Financial Times since 2006. He began his journalistic career in 1984 at the BBC World Service. Between 1987 and 1988 he was a Fulbright scholar at Princeton University and after two years as the Washington correspondent for The Sunday Correspondent, he spent 15 years working for the Economist, stationed in Brussels (where he penned the Charlemagne European affairs column), Bangkok and Washington. His regular foreign affairs column for the Financial Times focuses on the US, European Union and globalization; he also has a foreign affairs blog, The World. „If you want to understand why the euro is in such trouble forget, for a moment, debt and sovereign bonds – and take a look at the bank notes. The images on euro notes are of imaginary buildings. While national currencies typically feature real people and places – George Washington on the dollar bill, the Bolshoi theatre on the Russian rouble – European identity is too fragile for that. Selecting a place or a hero associated with one country would have been too controversial. So the European authorities chose vague images that represented everywhere and nowhere.”