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    The Patriarchal Theological Seminary of Halki is located on the Turkish island known as Heyelbiada in the Bosporus straits. It was closed in 1971 by the Turkish government and is the subject of much controversy since it is the only seminary in Turkey and the position of Ecumenical Patriarch can only be filled by a Turkish citizen. Sign the petition to reopen it at www.greece.org

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05 June 2008

Comments

Hermes

Disapointing post really. Who has largely given the Albanians licence to behave like barbarians? Who has their largest base in the world stationed in an Albanian claimant?

Margaret

S,

Broadband playing up, so I'll keep it short. Off-post too, except for tenuous connection to Albania. Thought you might like to read about this team's trip to see ancient New Testament manuscripts on Patmos (and in Albania),

http://www.reclaimingthemind.org/blog/2008/06/07/a-week-on-patmos/

A follow-up from last year's vist,

http://www.reclaimingthemind.org/blog/2007/06/20/our-last-working-day-on-patmos/

when they showed the Abbot at the monastery the fruits of their work.

Links at the bottom of each post to other similar posts.

Stavros

Yes Hermes, I know, the big bad USA. Obviously I am in no position to defend the indefensible policies in the Balkans. Sadly, I don't see things changing irregardless of who is elected. Perhaps the Greek government could exercise some of its considerable clout in the region to support their Greek brethren in Albania??

Margaret, Anna & Nick are in Patmos right now to visit the same monastery. I didn't notice a link to the Powerpoint presentation. Will it become available eventually?

Margaret

No idea, Stavros. But how wonderful that Anna and Nick get to visit the monastery for themselves while the rest of us just get to read about it ... Funny old world. I hope they were far enough from the earth quake not to be too troubled by it.

Stavros

Quite a coincidence you mentioning that particular monastery. Luckily they were quite far from the epicenter and not affected.

Hermes

Stavros, sometimes I question your sanity. Greece cannot lift a finger. One only has to look at what happened to Serbia when they tried to protect their ethnic brethren.

Hermes

http://www.ardin.gr/blog/?p=162#comments

Please read this book review to begin to understand the framework most Greeks are now victim too.

Stavros

Hermes, you have often taken Greek-Americans to task for being ineffectual, apathetic and unable to influence their government. Now you are telling me that Helladic Greeks are helpless victims, ensnared in vast conspiracies they are unable to resist. Greece can help their brethren in Northern Epirus and in Cyprus if only they could muster the political will to do so.

http://rieas.gr/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=602&Itemid=66

Hermes

Don't worry I should have known there is no point. Continue reading Mark Steyn.

Stavros

Notwithstanding what the Greek elites have wrought in terms of the breakdown of traditional Greek society and mores, I don't think that absolves Greeks, no matter where they live, for their failures. I refuse to accept the role of helpless victim. Blame the US, Israel, Soros all you want. Greece does not have to complicit in its destruction. The Serbs are worthy of our continued support though not altogether blameless for their predicament.

As for Steyn, he is one of my favorite Anglo-Saxons and well worth reading, unlike some of the drivel one reads in the Greek press nowadays.

Lefteris

Hi all. It's been quite some time i didnt comment on this blog but i was quite often a visitor.
Now let me express my own thoughts on the subject.
It's always good to have the relieved feeling of "its not my fault". Well to my understanding (although might be questionable but thats the way i see things) if we have a look in the post WWII period, we should have gained some of todays Albanian territories but we did not why? well to that there is an unswer i gave a long time ago in this forum while talking abt Mr. Lalas. Greek foreign policy sucked from the very beginning. Money started puring in, according to the Truman "dogma" greedy Greek politics of the time & todays shipowners got the chance to get rich & step back to Greece's indisputable rights of the time. Thus today we have in down town Athens Albanians saying that we will run the show in Greece in 5 years time.
Dear Hermes although you are right abt Serbia i cannot agree with you that "we cannot lift a finger" WHY? whom should we afraid off? Americans?? well if they want to start a new bombing against us let them do so. I'm not playing the hero acting like "let them come & we gonna treat them well". But all i'm saying is that, we dont have to live in the fear of "what if" and "hell no, Americans will %^*@*& us).
To that i will remind everyone on the forum of an answer Mr Koumoutsakos (gen secretary of ministry of foreign affairs) It was the day when Turkey got a negotiations starting date for stepping in the EU, At that day we had something like 13 violations of the greek FIR. Mrs Houkli of NET asked Mr Koumoutsakos to comment on that. the answer was astonishing... quoting "can you thing of how many air violations we would have experienced if we didnt comply" end quote.
If we give in others will take, thats the rule. Lets stop giving first & then lets blame all of them.
A big thing is going on in Greece now abt fyrom!! why? who gave in first?? Americans? Israelis? Soros? Martians? NO, MITSOTAKIS and his govt gave in, i dont care if he was pressed to do so, at the end of the day he was elected Greece's PM, not US senator & ofcourse not the president of fyrom. He should have protected our own rights. Further more we all are idiots because we still have him & his family running the show together with the rest 300.

Dear Stavros.
I want to comment on your statment of "The Serbs are worthy of our continued support though not altogether blameless for their predicament." what do you exactly mean??
do you still believe Mrs Albraight's invention on "ethnic cleansing"? Serbs did not do anything more or less than to protect their territory which nowadays is a dismembered country. And what support do you mean? the independence Kosovo maybe? lets face it Stavros US lit a fire in balkans & only god knows what will be the outcome of that.

Stavros

Hi Lefteris, welcome back. It is always good to hear from those in the Patrida. Your words speak for themselves and I heartly agree with you.

American foreign policy in the Balkans is a disaster. I am not proud that we have abandoned loyal allies in favor of narcotrafiking terrorists in exchange for short-term and illusory gains. Personally I hope that Greece plays a more assertive role in the region and uses it's substantial economic power to protect its interests and those of its brethren in Northern Epirus. I welcome its approach on FYROM. It is long overdue.

I would recommend reading the following analysis:

http://www.serbianna.com/columns/michaletos/033.shtml

As for the Serbians, I think they have been demonized and blamed almost exclusively for too long for the breakup of Yugoslavia. All the parties involved however, have blood on their hands including Milosevic.

I have written previoulsy about the dangers of Kosovo independence so I won't repeat myself.

Hermes

The root of the problem lies in the appropriation of certain Greek elites by foreign powers, who used these Greek elites to further their own ends. This problem stretches back even further than WWII. But to keep the discussion bounded by something comprehesible then Lefteris is correct that the carrots that were dangled by the Americans to certain Greek elites over the last 50 years. The outcome of this strategy were both good and bad. It probably helped in keeping Greece out of the Soviet fold but it also resulted in national disasters like Cyprus. It may surprise some people that up until the last few years the Left in Greece was generally more patriotic - but we should not overexaggerate this. More recently, American administrations have used various leverage points against Greece. Obviously, the insistence on almost acting as Turkey's ambassador in Europe despite the exhaustion of the Papandreou-Simitis doctrine is a result of US pressure. Other pressure points in regards to FYROM, Annan Plan etc are used to push Greece into a certain direction. What about those appropriate Greek elites? Do they have agency? They might but it appears much more expedient for them to accept the directives but appear strong for the electorate. For Bakoyiannis, the idea of mixing in the corridors of global power with US and EU diplomats and statesmen, far outweights potentially messy negiotations over "dusty border lands with local despots and terrorists". Can you imagine Bakoyiannis gunning for a showdown with US diplomats and government over Northern Epirus. Greece will not do anything. In the meantime US government departments in an alliance with human rights lobbies do their work across the region. Whilst Israel conducted military exercises in Larissa last week. And everyone knows that some of those Turkish pilots that conduct the fly overs are actually Israelis. And I wonder if the Israelis would let the Greeks bomb parts of the Negev desert? Not a chance. You see we are, and have let ourselves, be caught in a cruel nation defeating matrix. And what about the Diaspora. For one thing reflex actions in response to criticisms reveal a certain embarrassment. At a higher level the Diaspora "lobby" groups are just as appropriated as the Greek elites. Nothing makes them happier than having their stupid faces photographed next to George Bush or cocktail parties in Manhattan with Greek ambassadors in an orgy of self congratulation. It makes these peasants overjoyed that they can run back to the village in Chicago or Sydney and show everyone they are real deal makers. However, why don't they work closer with the patriots on the ground in Greece. Why? Exactly for the same reasons that Bakoyiannis will not.

Lefteris

Hermes: 100% true, i didnt want to go further downt to WWI, the balkan wars, & the war for independence. But yes you are right on that one as well problem lies way back than WWII.

Stavros:You say abt Milosevic's hands,
1. Slobo was just a man
2.well you got him, he was jailed and faced the international tribunal. He died mysteriously i dont know how.
3.what abt mr. Rugova the kosovar leader of the time? didnt he had blood on his hands?
4.What abt KLA? didn't they commit attrocities?
5. What abt haradinaj?? he was charged with war crimes, but he was acquitted a couple of months ago.
6.I saw a video some time ago i think it was Alex Papahelas's "fakeloi" but cant recall now. It clearly showed x-KLA leaders now working in US and in a meeting they had very warm handshaking's & talks with former nato supreme commander Gen. Wesley Clark and the abomination of politics Mr Richard Holbrooke
Let us be frank, the "punishment" was only "one way".

Hermes

Lefteris, largest US base in the world now in Kosovo. Why would they bother going after the terrorists?

Stavros, there are plenty of good things to read coming out of Greece. I find Greek discourse much more daring and independent than the trite ideas we read in the supposed West. Maybe click on some of the links at legein.

Stavros

Lefteris,

Game, set, match. Of course you are right and I cannot argue with the points you make.

Hermes,

In my opinion the Greek press is as bad as our own here in the US. Its leftward tilt is unmistakable. I'll take your word on this since you are probably more familiar with the subject. This guy Legein is a rather interesting Greek writer although I don't agree with him.

Hermes

http://strategy-geopolitics.blogspot.com/2008/06/blog-post_17.html

Stavros?

Stavros

http://www.intellectum.org/articles/issues/intellectum3/en/ITL03p005013_the_Impact_of_Greek_Americans_on_U.S._Greek_Relations_Nicholas%20Gage.pdf

Hermes?

The situation in Thrace does deserve a post.

Hermes

Interesting magazine. I am trying to work out if there is any affiliation; formally or informally, with disgusting SYRIZA types.

Nikolas Gage raises good points. Some of which are self evident and others which are not well known. Overall, the circulation of talent has not occured. Our lobby groups have been ossified in the past due to the lack of turnover. The same thing has happened here. You have some very talented and experienced people at helm. That is good. But the problem is that they do not allow new talent to come through which will bring new ideas. And there is plenty of talent. For example, using PR firms. If I raised that idea to some of the lobbyists I know over here they'll faint. So we are left with an ageing elite that are increasingly out of touch with new politics, communication methods and their own youth constituency.

Stavros

Like you I don't like what SYRIZA (Synaspismos tis Rizospastikis Aristeras or the Coalition of the Radical Left) stands for. They are the youthful products of decades of Leftist indoctrination in Greek schools. We have a similar phenomenon in the US and of course many of these young voters are supporting Obama. SYRIZA, despite its ideological drawbacks has attracted new blood to the political process, although their ideas constitute the usual warmed over Marxist legacy of the past.

I would agree with you that Greek organizations consist too often of an old boy network that is averse to working together, let alone bringing in younger people. Too many egos. Let's face it we Greeks have never been very good at getting organized and presenting a united front. When we do we perform miracles.

When you consider the dormant political and economic might of the Greek Diaspora it boggles the mind to think that we have so little clout. After a hundred years the Greek-American community still does not a world class institution of higher learning on which to hang its hat. Recently Michael and Mary Jaharis gave Hellenic College five million dollars. Well done, BUT where are the other Greek billionaires?

http://www.hchc.edu/hellenic/about/news/news_releases/MARYandMICHAELJAHARISRECEIVEHONORARYDOCTORATESFROMHELLENICCOLLEGEandHOLYCROSSANDGRANTTHE.html

Hermes

SYRIZA is completely different from what we have seen before. I can say I have a tiny bit of sympathy for contempary KKE (note the word tiny) but nothing for SYRIZA. Nothing at all. They are lunatics. The following link is a good one:

http://syriza-watch.blogspot.com/

Another problem in the Diaspora is the Greek Nietzchean Hellenistic-Byzantine King of Kings mentality which results in silly little fiefdoms which invariably becomes obstacles to new ideas and fresh faces. I have met old men who steadfastly refuse any debate to protect their tiny bit of power rather than benefit of the common good. Over here we have two independence day marches because the Patriarchate and the Greek Orthodox Community do not get along. You would think we were Chinese, had 1 billion people and could afford disunity.

The Jaharis's contribution is good. They should be recognised. But five million dollars in the big scheme of things is nothing. That is what Paris Latsis spends in one night with Paris Hilton. I have heard of Jewish American hedge fund managers giving away over one hundred million dollars to some silly outreach program that teaches their culture and helps Jews marry other Jews.

demonax

Stavro
How do you square your support for McCain (I'm presuming this) with the fact that he's a raving Turkophile, who supports Albanian nationalism in the Balkans and can't even find it within him to back the rights of the Ecumenical Patriarch and those of the Greeks of Constantinople, issues close to your heart, I know?

Hermes

demonax, you are really asking the wrong question.

I'll explain. Regarding the Iranian nuclear weapon threat, the average Greek American will rabidly be for neutralising the Iranian threat in order to protect Israel and further American oligarchic interests in the Middle East and Central Asia. The idea that Iran developing nuclear weapons may precipitate Saudi Arabia and then Turkey in developing nuclear weapons, and the resultant negative impact on Greece's position vis a vis Turkey, would not enter the mind of the average Greek American because the national interests of Greeks are never put forward in American media nor web news outlets. This is probably the first time a Greek American has heard how McCain's election would negatively impact Greek national interests. Also, a quick survey of Greek American websites shows no mention of the looming Pax Turkoamericana planned for the Eastern Mediterenean.

This is one of the reasons we have become the koroido of the world.

Stavros

Hi Demo,

Glad to have you commenting again on MGO. Sorry for the delay in responding. Luckily Hermes wasted no time answering on my behalf. You are correct to presume that I am going to vote for McCain. I am less than enthusiastic about his candidacy for a variety of reasons however it is a choice quite frankly of the lesser of two evils. Perhaps one day I will write a post about it. As a Greek-American I do not base my vote strictly on "Greek" issues. I vote based on what I think is good for the country that I and my family live in. Our concerns are not relegated only to what Greeks in Greece consider of paramount importance. A Greek in Greece couldn't care less about who that next President nominates to the Supreme Court. I do. On many of the issues that concern us mutually (keep in my mind that I have a much stronger connection to Greece than many other Greek-Americans) such as the Greek minority in Turkey, the Patriarchate, Cyprus, Northern Epirus, Kosovo, FYROM, etc I am willing and able to advocate for the Greek side because it is not only good for Greeks but also because it is the right thing to do in terms of an effective American foreign policy that ultimately benefits ALL Americans and the region as well.

Most Greek-Americans tend to vote traditionally for Democrats and I would daresay that many prominent Greek-Americans support Obama. Senator Obama is a flawed candidate for a variety of reasons. Voting for him and his party does not mean that we will see any significant changes in American policy vis a vis the Balkans, Turkey or Cyprus. A Democratic victory in November returns to power many of the same people that created the current mess in the Balkans. I might add that there are many Philhellenes on both sides of the aisle.

No one candidate is going to change the fundamental basics, even when they tout "hope and change." In order for the Greek Lobby to become effective, it must address the pervasive organizational, educational, public relations and economic issues preventing it from achieving greater influence in both political parties.

Sometimes candidates we support end up on the wrong side of an issue. It is incumbent on us to help set them straight and pressure them to change. They work for us. It is very seldom that I agree across the board with people I vote for. Am I concerned about McCain's ties to the Albanians, his support for Kosovo independence and Turkey? Of course I am. So should we all go out and vote for Obama because he is pandering by voting for meaningless resolutions? Barack is an unknown quantity, Please enlighten me if you actually know what it is he stands for since that seems to change daily.

As an aside, how do you explain Cypriots voting in a party (AKEL) that actively worked against the independence movement lead by Grivas? I am not trying to throw this in your face or change the subject, only attempting to show that sometimes we have to make difficult choices as voters. Despite my misgivings about Communists like Christofias (an ingrained trait given my background) I am actually rooting for him in the current talks.

Hermes,

Thank you for pointing out that Greek and American interests often coincide as in the case of the threat of a nuclear Iran.

The reason we have become the koroido of the world is not because of what Greek-Americans do or do not do. It is because of the image the "genuine" Greeks in the Patrida portray to the world and because we spend most of our time arguing with each other.


demonax

As you say, ultimately, on issues relating to US foreign policy and Greece, I wouldn't expect there to be much difference between a Republican and Democrat administration; but it does seem to me that McCain is more ideologically committed to the 'Turkey is a pre-eminent US ally' thesis and an opponent of Greek interests in the Balkans, whereas Obama, because of his personal connections to prominent Greeks in Chicago and his known record, might be more amenable to at least listening to the Greek point of view. I don't like Obama either, but he seems no more evasive and vacuous to me than most politicians in Europe and the US. Personally, I don't vote in UK elections and don't care that much who gets in. Actually, because my taxes are too high and have been squandered these last 10 years on ridiculous socialist and liberal fancies, I hope the Tories win the next election in 2010, but I'd never dirty myself by voting for this anti-Hellenic mob.

Regarding Cyprus, Grivas was not the leader of the Cypriot struggle for enosis, Makarios was, and AKEL backed Makarios in the 1960s and 1970s. Nevertheless, it is true that AKEL has always been lukewarm in its support for union with Greece – but this is for obvious reasons. If Cyprus had achieved enosis in the 1950s, AKEL would have been banned by the Greek government and its leaders arrested and carted off to Makronissi or Ikaria or wherever. Similarly, from 1967-74, how on earth could AKEL back union with Greece with the military junta in power in Athens? AKEL has often found itself in an invidious position, and though there is a great deal of deserved criticism that could be levelled at it, accusations of treachery are hard to make stick. The traitors in the Cyprus story, as I keep saying, are EOKA B – the Grivas/junta/CIA outfit. The status of Grivas is a touchy subject on the island, and I certainly wouldn't go round expressing support or admiration for him willy nilly.

Stavros

Makarios was the face of the struggle but Grivas was the sword. Without Grivas Cypriots would not have achieved their well deserved independence. There are no traitors in the Cyprus story, only flawed players in the struggle to achieve enosis. I'm willing to give AKEL the benefit of the doubt although some are not quite as forgiving as you or I:

http://www.noitikiantistasis.com/wordpress/?p=643

demonax

I don't agree with you about Grivas or about traitors, and I reckon EOKA B's crimes far outweigh those of AKEL. Regarding Obama: since, as you say, it's not worth bothering too much about his stated positions on Greek issues and connections to Chicago Greeks and expecting this to make a difference, if he should win, to US foreign policy in the Balkans and East Med. and since, again as you say, most Greek Americans aren't that interested in or aware of Greek issues which the US has influence in anyway – Cyprus, Kosovo, Albania/N.Epirus, the Ecumenical Patriarchate, etc – then why, as you say, will most Greek Americans be voting for Obama?

Is it because they know, subconsciously even, that as hyphenated Americans they don't quite fit into the Republican or dominant definitions of what it is to be an American and still see themselves as underdogs and outsiders, natural Democrat constituents? In which case, why be a second class American when you could be a first class Greek?

Stavros

I didn't think you would agree but I defer to you superior knowledge about Cypriot history. (I am being sincere here.)

As for Greek-Americans, keep in mind that Greek immigration has slowed to a trickle. My wife is considered one of the "new" arrivals and she has been here for over twenty years. That means that most Greek-Americans are second and third generation. Probably don't speak Greek, and most likely have never been to Greece. Their connection with Greece is increasingly tenuous. I am not happy about this but there you have it.

I am not sure how many vote Democrat or Republican. Greeks were traditionally Democrats, like most working class ethnic voters. That has changed to a degree but old habits die hard. Greek-Americans don't see themselves as second class citizens nor do they like playing the victim. I certainly never felt that way, in fact, my parents made us think we were "special" because we were Greek. If the history of Greek America teaches us anything it is that Greek-Americans despite being outsiders and underdogs were extremely adept at realizing the American dream.

Perhaps some Greeks that vote for Obama do so because they are believe "hope and change" means a new foreign policy that is not anti-Hellenic. They have been conned into thinking that Obama is not just another politician and that OBAMTOPIA is at hand:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XIRaFfMGNSc

Unfortunately, historically the Democrats have not been any better on these issues than the Republicans, often worse.

Actually, I have never been made to feel like a second class American in the United States whereas in Greece there have been a few instances where I was made to feel like anything but a first class Greek. I daresay there might even be a few Cypriots and Northern Epirots out there that have been treated like second class Greeks when in Greece.

I supported the candidacy of Dean Scontras (a Republican) here in Maine because he was strong on Greek issues as well as other issues I consider just as important. Alas he lost the primary. There are others like him that are worthy of our support throughout the US. If anyone can enlighten me on any concrete actions, now or in the future) Obama or his party have taken or would take, that would prove otherwise, I would be glad to hear them out. I am always willing to someone prove me wrong, as they often do.

demonax

The view that AKEL is an anti-Hellenic party whose aim is the dismantling of Hellenism on Cyprus is widespread on the island, and was the main line of attack against Christofias during the election campaign. I certainly have met leftwing Cypriots, particularly here in London, who want to deny or strip Cyprus of its Hellenic identity and construct a common ‘Cypriot’ identity with the TCs, but they are idiots – Obamians – though there are some significant supporters of what they would consider an anti-nationalist perspective, such as your friend Kyriakos Markides.

My own view is that Cypriots are not ready (and won't ever be ready) for AKEL's anti-hellenism and AKEL knows it would marginalise itself if it tried anything funny, but this doesn't mean that in the future, if the island is reunited, there won't be attempts to remove the Greek flag, the Greek national anthem, write Cyprus out of Greek history and the rest – which will polarise society and cause a lot of strife.

Anyway, my point is this: my view that Christofias is harmless and that EOKA B are the real Cypriot criminals is just that, a view; and your suspicion of the Reds is just as valid, as the Noitiki Antistasis article you linked to makes clear. These anti-AKEL sentiments are also expressed on this Cypriot blog: http://risenation.blogspot.com/.

My view remains, however, that EOKA B – which Grivas formed – is far more worthy of contempt than AKEL. Have you seen The Rape of Cyprus film I link to at Hellenic Antidote and which I've also uploaded to the Greek-Movies.com site? It is scathing of the EOKA B gangsters.
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=8259503203978535843

It is true that Greeks shouldn't expect any change in US foreign whether it's Obama or McCain; but I think the days are over anyway when Greeks waited on tenterhooks to see who got into the White House, when Greece only had America to turn to if it needed something sorting out with Turkey or others. The Fyrom veto is a case in point. Nor should we overstate the divergence between Greece and the US. I thought it was interesting this recent joint Greek-Israeli exercise over Crete taken by many as practice by the Israelis for bombing Iran. Interesting that this exercise was done with us, and not with the Turks, who obviously don’t want to get mixed up with the Iran business, which means the Israelis (and the US) had to turn to us.
http://www.metimes.com/International/2008/06/23/greece_israel_held_two_military_test_runs_for_attack_on_iran/5802/

Stavros

Demo,

Thanks for this very lucid response. I don't trust Communists, never will. As for EOKA-B, perhaps I don't know enough about this subject to speak authoritatively. I guess I grew up at a time when Enosis was more than a pipe dream. I realize that the future of Cyprus lies elsewhere and I genuinely wish all Cypriots well. They deserve better.

Lately I have been quite disgusted with both the Left and Right. I think that is why Obama caught the imagination of so many people desperate to believe in something worthwhile. He was going to be the guy who was going to take us to the next level in terms of race. He was going to reach out in a spirit of bipartisanship to solve the pressing difficult problems facing us. He was going to look at foreign policies problems in a new way. What we have gotten instead is someone who plays the race card, a politician who tells us anything we want to hear in order to get elected, an inexperienced charlatan who doesn't know what he is talking about most of the time and is a product of the machine politics of the past.

McCain despite our common background as military professionals, often disappoints me on so many issues not the least of which is his unsettling connections with the Turks and Albanians.

Personally I am glad about Greece doing what it must to survive. Even if it means tweaking our nose when we do stupid things. The United States has abandoned it true friends in the Balkans/Eastern Mediterranean and I pray that we will recognize this fact before it is too late and the damage is irreparable. Even when American policies are anti-Serb and anti-Hellenic, those countries continue to be pro-American. I say this because the policies they pursue are more in keeping with our true interests in the region than those devised by our elites. The Serbs have been a bulwark against the encroachment of radical Islam into Europe. The Greeks are a stabilizing influence for the Balkans and exert a restraining influence on Albania, FYROM and Turkey as well as provide the economic engine for the region.

It's about time that Greece uses the Israeli's in the same way that the Turks have done in the past. It is a great move for a variety of reasons and means Greek foreign policy is increasingly anchored in realpolitik as the Russian pipeline deal and the military cooperation with the French make apparent.

Hermes

Stavros, what do you mean by "It's about time that Greece uses the Israeli's in the same way that the Turks have done in the past. It is a great move for a variety of reasons and means Greek foreign policy is increasingly anchored in realpolitik as the Russian pipeline deal and the military cooperation with the French make apparent"?

Before you answer please read this article. Ignore the website as they have only published it from the more sensible magazine Resalto.

http://www.e-grammes.gr/article.php?id=3169

Hermes

Perhaps you should read this as well.

I'd like your comments.

http://www.resaltomag.gr/216.mag

Lefteris

hi all,
Don't know where to begin.
Let me say a few words abt Christofias, Grivas , Papadopoulos, and generally Cyprus. As i have said in the past i leave now in Cyprus so i think i can contribute a few words of what is happening in the island. Demonax is right abt Grivas. Grivas was hailed as hero during the 1955-59 war for independence. His dark role in bringing EOKA back into arms as EOKA B resulting the coupe against Makarios is a FACT. also dont forget who was Grivas during WWII and his "ομάδα Χ" . abt Christofias: as i like to say opposition is always better place for judging the govt because all you do is... talk talk talk, and that was what AKEL was doing for quite some time. He removed his support to Papadopoulos's administration because "he didnt draw the red lines" on the map of settlement of the Cyprus problem. papadopoulos lost the battle & Christofias took over. Now i dont concider Christofias as a communist he is more or less center oriented with nice rhetoric to the left but besides that all the rest is center-center right (my opinion). He oppened the Lydras gate as a talking of will & friendship and on the other hand Turks did not agree to open the Limnitis roadblock "on the NW of the free areas" quoting Mehmet Ali Talat "for now the the opening of Limnitis is not in our interest".
Christofias is now president for 4 months i still havent seen drawing red lines he was so keen of.

Papadopoulos: His internal affair administration was, i wouldn't say a disaster but not in anyway good. As far as it concerns his foreign affair policy then yes he was good. For the first time i felt like hey at least one is standing up against the will of the west, during the 2004 referendum on the *B*Anan plan. After that Papadopoulos was a "persona non grata" for many western country's.

Now abt Iran.
I dont think that i'm against a country who is trying to produce nuclear facilities.
Lets see it like that. If the nuclear facilities are made for producing energy i guess no one will disagree on that so i will leave it aside. Lets see if these are made for producing nuclear weapons.
1. i read "The idea that Iran developing nuclear weapons may precipitate Saudi Arabia and then Turkey in developing nuclear weapons, and the resultant negative impact on Greece's position vis a vis Turkey" turkey has already announced their commitment to start a nuclear program.

2.again who is to decide who can & who cannot have nuclear power and /or weapons. a country of roughly 7.5 million can have and a country of 70+ cannot? it's unfair. is it because of the Islamic "danger"? well as i said again Pakistan is an Islamic fundamentalist country, ruled by a dictator, ally of of the united states & possesses nuclear technology. So the Islamic thing does not count. I'm not a pro nuclear weapon but lets be frank with ourselves no one wants Iran to posses such a technology because then becomes a dangerous threat to Israels views of the middle East. I dont believe Iran is a threat to us all. Iran is reach in Oil & that is the second or maybe the first key point that the west wants Iran to its knees begging.

Stavros

Lefteri & Hermes,

Apologies for not responding to your comments. I wanted to finish this new post on Kontoglou first. I will respond in the next day or two. You both bring up some interesting points and I owe you a thoughtful response at the very least.

Hermes

Greater Albania internal matter, US State Dep't. Read on (with horror)....

http://www.serbianna.com/news/2008/02702.shtml

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