The crisis itself erupted more than a year later, in 2010.
There is some similarity between the euro crisis and the subprime crisis that caused the crash of 2008.
In each case, a supposedly riskless asset - collateralized debt obligations (CDOs), based largely on mortgages, in 2008, and European government bonds now - lost some or all of their value.
Unfortunately, the euro crisis is more intractable.
In 2008, the US financial authorities that were needed to respond to the crisis were in place; at present in the eurozone one of these authorities, the common treasury, has yet to be brought into existence.
This requires a political process involving a number of sovereign states.
That is what has made the problem so severe.
Image: A policeman clashes with an anti-austerity protester near the Italian Parliament building in downtown Rome Wednesday, September 14, 2011.