HUFFINGTON POST
12/22/2014 12:03 pm ET Updated Dec 22, 2014

Between The Troika And France's Unemployment, Europe Didn't Have The Best 2014

There seems to be a general consensus among HuffPost editors around the world that Europe saw a tough year in 2014.

Take, for example, when the troika -- the International Monetary Fund, European Central Bank and European Commission -- went back on years of balancing the budget in Greece.

"The troika demanded Greece ... more and more austerity measures, meaning more budgetary cuts, balancing the budget even more, paying more and more of its ridiculous debt," Tom Dan, HuffPost's Senior International Editor, told HuffPost Live's Josh Zepps on Friday. "Bloomberg that day ... came out with a big editorial talking about how ridiculous those new claims were."

France won't be coming out of 2014 unscathed either, according to editor at large for HuffPost France Anne Sinclair. She described the country's swelling unemployment rate and the growing mistrust of parties that have governed France for years thus paving the way for more extremism.

"The real risk is that now we can say, that maybe not next term, which is 2017, but maybe the next one, which will be 2022, we can have an extreme right wing, president in France," Sinclair said. "That ... will be a real storm, a real danger, a real well something very ... annoying."

Huffington Post Media Group Editorial Director Howard Fineman weighed in on Europe's heightened sense of anxiety about its place in the world.

"You do have a time in Europe where there’s a real fear of the outsider, a real fear of losing their historic national identity and sort of the spirit of pan-Europe and world embrace is not there in Europe right now," he concluded.

Watch the clip above to hear about some of Europe's biggest stories from 2014 and click here to watch the full HuffPost around the world segment.

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