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ITHAKA ON THE HORIZON: A Greek-American Journey



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07 January 2012


Simon Baddeley

Stavros. 'For brave men any land can be their grave.' Indeed. What an astonishing moving story. I feel privileged to have read this account by the late Professor Stavrou. I wish my late father, John Baddeley CMG, a very junior MI6 officer in 1949 stationed in Athens (having been severely wounded fighting in northern Europe), could have read this. He died in 1972. For obvious reason's we know nothing about his work, then or since 1949, but my friends say he spoke 'mountain Greek' , He was married in the little church Hermou Street to Maria Roussen, so I enjoy four Greek half-siblings. I know he, with none of the devastating implications for Grigorios Stavrou, was also betrayed by Philby. Often when I'm in beloved Greece, in Corfu (where I shall be in a few days) I gaze across the straits towards Saranda, below it's snow covered mountains. Now I will know that 'in some corner of that foreign field' under that cruelly sullied soil, there's 'a richer dust concealed'. Simon Χρόνια Πολλά



Thucydides was right of course but it remains up to us to remember and honor their deeds. I have been itching to see this moving account more widely disseminated not only because of what it says for a man like Grigorios but what it says about the present day political situation.

Memory eternal to them all.

Simon Baddeley

I think of Prof Stavrou's tears. They recall words of Shakespeare
MALCOLM Dispute it like a man.
MACDUFF I shall do so; But I must also feel it as a man: I cannot but remember such things were, That were most precious to me. Did heaven look on, And would not take their part?

The usefulness of Philhellenes is that they want to know. They listen. They learn. This story is as complex and yet as simple as a classic tragedy. Perfidy, Honour, treachery, murder, betrayal, perfidy, grief. As yet no catharsis. This is an individual series of events unique to individuals, specific places and a moment in recent history - yet it contains universal witness to the heights and depths of the human spirit.

Irelene P. Ricks

I will always treasure my time as a graduate student of Professor Stavrou. He took time to teach us about the often insane political conflicts that turn sane people into savages. And he did while serving us very thick, very strong Turkish coffee. I will miss my old professor and scholar, but know that he lives on in her hearts and the work he has left behind.

Irelene P. Ricks, Ph.D.

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Searching for Ithaka

  • Keep Ithaka always in your mind. Arriving there is what you're destined for. But don't hurry the journey at all. Better if it lasts for years, so you're old by the time you reach the island, wealthy with all you've gained on the way, not expecting Ithaka to make you rich. Ithaka gave you the marvelous journey. Without her you wouldn't have set out. She has nothing left to give you now. And if you find her poor, Ithaka won't have fooled you. Wise as you will have become, so full of experience, you'll have understood by then what these Ithakas mean. C. P. Cavafy


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