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Thread: The Greek Civil War 1946-1949

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    Default The Greek Civil War 1946-1949

    The Greek people have unfinished business with British and US imperialism which crushed the Greek anti-fascist forces in the aftermath of the second world war and ensured that right wing reaction remained in power there.

    More than 65,000 communists and other fighters and supporters of EAM and DAG were forced to leave Greece and seek refuge in the Socialist countries (around 20,000 of them were deprived of their citizenship), 40,000 were sent to the prisons and concentration camps such as Makronnissos. The executions of resistance fighters continued until 1955 (at least 5000 were executed including the famous case of Nikos Belogiannis member of the PB of the KKE). The monarchy was re-established along with a reactionary regime notable for its subservience to Anglo-American imperialism, its repression of the left, economic mismanagement, its political and cultural bankruptcy. It reached its apogee with the notorious 7 year US-backed dictatorship of the Colonels
    A short summary of the Civil War from the KKE:

    http://inter.kke.gr/News/2006new/2006-09-civil1/
    Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the (female dog) that bore him is in heat again. Bertolt Brecht

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    Default Re: The Greek Civil War 1946-1949

    Quote Originally Posted by Sam Lord View Post
    The Greek people have unfinished business with British and US imperialism which crushed the Greek anti-fascist forces in the aftermath of the second world war and ensured that right wing reaction remained in power there.

    A short summary of the Civil War from the KKE:

    http://inter.kke.gr/News/2006new/2006-09-civil1/

    It's clear from events in Greece, Italy, Indonesia and elsewhere that any serious prospect of a communist party coming to power electorally were suppressed by the big "democratic" powers.

    (Edit - removed unsourced, anonymous anti-communist allegations referred to in the thread)
    Last edited by C. Flower; 08-06-2011 at 08:01 PM.

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    Default Re: The Greek Civil War 1946-1949

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    It's clear from events in Greece, Italy, Indonesia and elsewhere that any serious prospect of a communist party coming to power electorally were suppressed by the big "democratic" powers.

    A counterview on the civil war is given here -






    http://www.oocities.org/greek_civil_war/1.html.tmp
    Nice anti-communist account. Who wrote it? The CIA?
    Last edited by Sam Lord; 08-06-2011 at 01:21 PM.
    Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the (female dog) that bore him is in heat again. Bertolt Brecht

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    Default Re: The Greek Civil War 1946-1949

    Quote Originally Posted by Sam Lord View Post
    Nice anti-communist account. Who wrote it? The CIA?
    Very likely an intern.

    The KKE account is impressive in conveying the scale of the civil war and of the repression of communists and progressives, but is lacking in explanation of the wider political background and in particular the Tito - Stalin split.

    The Wiki entry gives a summary.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greek_Civil_War

    The KKE also emphasises the British role but doesn't make it very clear that the US took over from Britain as the main backer of counterrevolution in Greece.

    http://library.thinkquest.org/10826/greek.htm

    There are consistent accounts that Stalin gave no support to the Greek communists, in spite of the fact that they backed him in his split with Tito and as a result had to do without the support of Tito which they had previously received.

    http://www.coldwar.org/articles/40s/...r1945-1949.asp
    Last edited by C. Flower; 08-06-2011 at 02:26 PM.

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    Default Re: The Greek Civil War 1946-1949

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    Very likely an intern.
    Really, I'd like to know the name of the author ...

    Can you stand over it?
    Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the (female dog) that bore him is in heat again. Bertolt Brecht

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    Default Re: The Greek Civil War 1946-1949

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    There are consistent accounts that Stalin gave no support to the Greek communists, in spite of the fact that they backed him in his split with Tito and as a result had to do without the support of Tito which they had previously received.
    So this is why you posted some fascist propaganda in response to the OP?
    Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the (female dog) that bore him is in heat again. Bertolt Brecht

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    Default Re: The Greek Civil War 1946-1949

    Quote Originally Posted by Sam Lord View Post
    Really, I'd like to know the name of the author ...

    Can you stand over it?
    I have no wish to "stand over it". It's not my view.

    I would be interested in your views on why Stalin didn't back the Greek revolution though.

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    Default Re: The Greek Civil War 1946-1949

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    I have no wish to "stand over it". It's not my view.
    You considered it important enought to post in its entirety.

    Can we at least have an attribution? Do you actually know who wrote it?
    Where did you find it?
    Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the (female dog) that bore him is in heat again. Bertolt Brecht

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    Default Re: The Greek Civil War 1946-1949

    Quote Originally Posted by Sam Lord View Post
    So this is why you posted some fascist propaganda in response to the OP?
    I posted it as it provided a diametrically opposed view to the KKEs. There are numerous claims of communist "terror" and executions, best known being Gage's book "Eleni". I have no idea whether or not the claims are true, complete falsifications or are interpretations of justifiable acts taken in a ferocious civil war.

    This site has a very interesting account of the experiences of a Sligo man who fought with British, and who witnessed one of the worst German atrocities in response to acts of resistance.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/ww2peopleswar/s...a3206837.shtml

    Also, a British Officer who directed firing on ELAS in Athens, from a Greek cruiser, to conceal British involvement.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/ww2peopleswar/s...a2002366.shtml
    Last edited by C. Flower; 08-06-2011 at 02:59 PM.

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    Default Re: The Greek Civil War 1946-1949

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    I posted it as it provided a diametrically opposed view to the KKEs. There are numerous claims of communist "terror" and executions, best known being Gage's book "Eleni". I have no idea whether or not the claims are true, complete falsifications or are interpretations of justifiable acts taken in a ferocious civil war.
    So because something from a communist perspective is linked you feel it necessary to immediately post an opposing fascist view even though you don't know who wrote it, you won't stand over it, and you have no idea if it is true or not.

    Is this to give "balance" to the site?
    Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the (female dog) that bore him is in heat again. Bertolt Brecht

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    Default Re: The Greek Civil War 1946-1949

    The KKE account is impressive in conveying the scale of the civil war and of the repression of communists and progressives, but is lacking in explanation of the wider political background and in particular the Tito - Stalin split.
    I had missed the second part of the KKE article, on a different page, which
    does cover in useful detail the international political context and the US role.

    I don't find it convincing in so far as it suggests that the Soviet Union was not in the position to provide any practical support to the Greeks, but it is a very short summary.

    http://inter.kke.gr/News/2006new/2006-09-ciivl2/

    So because something from a communist perspective is linked you feel it necessary to immediately post an opposing fascist view even though you don't know who wrote it, you won't stand over it, and you have no idea if it is true or not.

    Is this to give "balance" to the site?
    This version of the Greek civil war in that anonymous account has been put about widely - the book and film Eleni being one example. I had thought that you might be interested in tackling the issues, and clarifying what is untrue, but apparently not.

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    Default Re: The Greek Civil War 1946-1949

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post

    This version of the Greek civil war in that anonymous account has been put about widely - the book and film Eleni being one example. I had thought that you might be interested in tackling the issues, and clarifying what is untrue, but apparently not.
    I would have thought that the truth of what you chose to post on the site would be more of a responsibility for yourself.
    Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the (female dog) that bore him is in heat again. Bertolt Brecht

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    Default Re: The Greek Civil War 1946-1949

    The Greek communist resistance goose was cooked back in 1944 when Stalin and Churchill played their percentage game and Greece came down 10% - 90% in Britains favour when it came to spheres of influence - they never had a chance at the end of the day- there would be no help coming from the USSR - it was a quid pro-quo - Stalin got to decide the governments of Poland,Hungary,Romania,Bulgaria etc etc- basically anywhere that the Red Army had overrun while defeating the Axis nations in WWII in exchange for allowing Britain,France and the other allies deciding the government structures in the rest of Europe - Britain was heavily invested in the modern state of Greece since its foundation in the 1830s , had a strong philhellenic community who had access to highest offices of power and Churchill himself was never going to let the Greeks go to the left and threaten Cyprus - then a crown colony and a staging post for the Royal Navy and the Raj.

    That said - it could be argued that EAM and Elas could have won the day if they had advanced and taken Athens after the German surrender in late 1944 - instead for some reason they dallied (like why did Hitler stop before Dunkirk and let hundreds of thousands of British,French,Belgian and Dutch soldiers away to fight another day) and got absorbed in internal feuds and allowed the right wing resistance groups from the pelloponnese and the islands , the Cairo government in exile and the British to land in Pireaus and establish a beachhead in athens and the rest as they say is history.

    It was a brutal civil war - no question about it - it was total war in every respect and the country was split right down the middle and the scars are still there today for everybody to see.I wont into much detail on it as Wikis account is pretty fair in regard to the general gist of it.

    I spent the first of 4 -5 years in Greece teaching english in the little village of Loutra high in the Gramos Mountains in Epirus on the Albanian Border in 1992 - the Gramos Mountains were the last stronghold of the communist resistance in the civil war - its a wild place - absolutely beautiful and you will see golden eagles, Bears and wolves with soaring peaks, dark forests and plunging river georges - very sparsely populated -you can see why it took so long to dislodge them from here - it is perfect guerrilla war country and the DSE were hardened veterans - the scars of the government onslaught were still visible over 40 years later - deserted and destroyed remains of villages ,patches of forest where napalm and other defoliatants were used (for the first time in Europe) to burn them out of it - tunnels and caves that were used as camps and HQs and the secret paths and routes thru the mountains that they used to bring in supplies from Albania and that were used to finally melt away into Albania when they surrendered. I have to thank local postie and mad amateur historian Spiros Petropoulus and his family for adopting me for the best part of a year and bringing me around to all these places - I have photos somewhere - on ole 35mm film (remember that stuff!) - if I can find them I'll try and scan and throw them up here sometime.

    BTW - I have a personal autographed version of "Eleni" ,lying around somewhere aswell - I met Gage or Gatzoyiannis when he gave a talk in the British council offices in Ioannina in the spring of 1993 - a more arrogant pompous self-righteous ass you could never wish to meet! - still fame is fame! - maybe my copy of his highly partizan and questionable novel might be worth something someday!

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    Default Re: The Greek Civil War 1946-1949

    Quote Originally Posted by Edo View Post
    The Greek communist resistance goose was cooked back in 1944 when Stalin and Churchill played their percentage game and Greece came down 10% - 90% in Britains favour when it came to spheres of influence - they never had a chance at the end of the day- there would be no help coming from the USSR - it was a quid pro-quo - Stalin got to decide the governments of Poland,Hungary,Romania,Bulgaria etc etc- basically anywhere that the Red Army had overrun while defeating the Axis nations in WWII in exchange for allowing Britain,France and the other allies deciding the government structures in the rest of Europe .....
    It wasn't all simply in the hands of the big powers. The Albanians managed to liberate their own country and there was no question of the US, Britain, France, Italy or anyone else deciding anything there.

    The Albanian communists would have got no more or less support from the Soviet Union than the Greeks did yet they always had the highest regard for the Soviet Union. Similarly the Greeks had no issue with a lack of support, believing that the Soviet Union was not in a position to do much more. Apparently the lack of support provided by the Soviet Union to the communists of the Balkans was and is only a matter of concern for anti-communists.

    Quote Originally Posted by Edo View Post
    That said - it could be argued that EAM and Elas could have won the day if they had advanced and taken Athens after the German surrender in late 1944 - instead for some reason they dallied (like why did Hitler stop before Dunkirk and let hundreds of thousands of British,French,Belgian and Dutch soldiers away to fight another day) and got absorbed in internal feuds and allowed the right wing resistance groups from the pelloponnese and the islands , the Cairo government in exile and the British to land in Pireaus and establish a beachhead in athens and the rest as they say is history.
    That is an interesting point. I wonder what held them back. But again it shows that everything was not necessarily in the hands of the big powers. It was really up to people to liberate and hold their own countries at the end of the day. "Stalin" was only one man and could not save the word as some would have us believe he should have.

    Quote Originally Posted by Edo View Post
    I spent the first of 4 -5 years in Greece teaching english in the little village of Loutra high in the Gramos Mountains in Epirus on the Albanian Border in 1992 - the Gramos Mountains were the last stronghold of the communist resistance in the civil war - its a wild place - absolutely beautiful and you will see golden eagles, Bears and wolves with soaring peaks, dark forests and plunging river georges - very sparsely populated -you can see why it took so long to dislodge them from here - it is perfect guerrilla war country and the DSE were hardened veterans - the scars of the government onslaught were still visible over 40 years later - deserted and destroyed remains of villages ,patches of forest where napalm and other defoliatants were used (for the first time in Europe) to burn them out of it - tunnels and caves that were used as camps and HQs and the secret paths and routes thru the mountains that they used to bring in supplies from Albania and that were used to finally melt away into Albania when they surrendered. I have to thank local postie and mad amateur historian Spiros Petropoulus and his family for adopting me for the best part of a year and bringing me around to all these places - I have photos somewhere - on ole 35mm film (remember that stuff!) - if I can find them I'll try and scan and throw them up here sometime.
    Thanks for the fascinating personal account. I'd love to see the photos.

    Quote Originally Posted by Edo View Post
    BTW - I have a personal autographed version of "Eleni" ,lying around somewhere aswell - I met Gage or Gatzoyiannis when he gave a talk in the British council offices in Ioannina in the spring of 1993 - a more arrogant pompous self-righteous ass you could never wish to meet! - still fame is fame! - maybe my copy of his highly partizan and questionable novel might be worth something someday!
    Famous because international reaction made him famous. It is all tiresome really. You bring up the Spanish Civil war and someone has to start banging on about Orwell. You mention the Greek Civil War and someone is bound to throw up Eleni in some sort of pavlovian anti-communist response.
    Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the (female dog) that bore him is in heat again. Bertolt Brecht

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    Default Re: The Greek Civil War 1946-1949

    Quote Originally Posted by Sam Lord View Post
    I would have thought that the truth of what you chose to post on the site would be more of a responsibility for yourself.
    That would be fair comment, if I made any claim that it was true. I don't.

    But given that it is, as you say, anonymous and unsourced piece of propoganda I am going to delete it.

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