View Full Version : Greece (catch all)

08-09-2010, 03:33 AM
Struggling under massive debt and squeezed by sweeping spending cuts, Greeks are relying on the tourist trade to help give its economy a much-needed bump. So the last thing they need right now is a terrorist group threatening to turn Greece into a "war zone." But when the Sect of Revolutionaries recently warned that "tourists should learn that Greece is no longer a safe haven of capitalism," keeping the country crippled was clearly one of their goals.

In a CD containing a proclamation sent to the center-left newspaper Ta Nea on July 27, the group promised "arson, sabotage, violent demonstrations, bombings and assassinations."

http://news.yahoo.com/s/time/20100808/wl_time/08599200920400;_ylt=Aojc0Dft60.8ifvoPBJC81VvaA8F;_ ylu=X3oDMTJsdWM4cDEyBGFzc2V0A3RpbWUvMjAxMDA4MDgvMD g1OTkyMDA5MjA0MDAEcG9zAzgEc2VjA3luX2FydGljbGVfc3Vt bWFyeV9saXN0BHNsawN3aG9pc3RoZW5ld2c-

08-09-2010, 05:14 AM
This is Old Hat for Greece because Communists causing trouble there has been going on ever since 1945.

It may be too long ago for folks to remember it now, but in 1947 when the British pulled out of the civil war in Greece between the the Royalists and the Communists the U.S. Army moved in with a military advisory command and helped them fight against the Reds. The trouble in Greece was what caused President Truman to announce the "Truman Doctrine," the American policy of assisting governments that were fighting internal Communist subversion. For a period the commander there was Gen. James Van Fleet, who also served in WW II and Korea. There is a fictionalized account of the civil war in Greece in the W.E.B. Griffin novel The Lieutenants.

I could be mistaken but Ken White probably remembers when this happened.

08-09-2010, 07:46 AM
Adam G,

Greece has a long standing problem with extremist groups, as the November 17th group showed and I suspect the causes are more than poor governance and incompetent security agencies - hopefully the later is history. On a quick read no-one is able to estimate the size of the group(s), their intent is partly in the open - with statements published and what is their real capability? Yet again proof that a small minority can have such an impact.

BBC 2009 comment:http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/7872214.stm


The recent crisis in Greece could, dangerously IMHO, give a spurious legitimacy to such protests and a "blind eye" by some to their activities. Have a look at Stefan Aust's book on the Baader-Meinhof gang (Post 691 on What are you reading thread) and 'Europe's Last Red Terrorists and The Revolutionary Organisation "November 17" By George Kassimeris.

08-09-2010, 04:01 PM
Thanks for directing the answer to me by name, but I merely posted the interrogative as written in the headline.

We've all read about the post-WWII fun-fest in Greece, I'm sure, but I found this passage to be the foot-stomper in the article:

"This is the first time we have ever had a terror organization in Greece saying they plan to target innocent bystanders and even tourists," says Mary Bossis, a security expert and professor at the University of Piraeus. "It's a change in mentality that's very troubling."

nb : a year ago, they were refered to as the 'Sect of Rebels'.
Must have gotten a new drummer.

08-09-2010, 04:05 PM
Dean Acheson's book Present at the Creation is worth reading for background on the early days of the Cold War. As Secretary of State under Truman he was the main architect of the Containment policy.

11-02-2011, 09:40 PM
As Greek politics grew ever more chaotic strong political protests erupted as the government moved to replace military chiefs with officers seen as more supportive of George Papandreou, the prime minister.


11-03-2011, 09:00 PM
(Reuters) - Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou defied demands on Thursday that he resign over his decision to hold a referendum on the nation's euro zone bailout deal, calling instead for his party to unite for a confidence vote in the government.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/11/03/us-greece-referendum-idUSTRE79U5PQ20111103?feedType=RSS&feedName=topNews&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+reuters%2FtopNews+%28News+%2F +US+%2F+Top+News%29

(Reuters) - The Greek government's sacking of its military brass at the height of the debt crisis may signal that the cabinet sees its own days as numbered, but the outside world need not worry about the army installing a junta as it did four decades ago.

Greeks have largely shrugged off suggestions that appeared in foreign media that the firing on Tuesday of top generals might have been aimed at thwarting a coup. The military is nowhere near the formidable political force that seized power in 1967 and held it for seven years.


11-04-2011, 10:51 AM
Not much good can come of this. I thought the European countries were beyond this sort of nonsense.

11-04-2011, 11:16 AM

The WW2 motto 'Keep Calm and Carry On' appears to fit the situation in Greece, as regards this story and this sentence from the original story posted helps and with my emphasis:
the sudden, sweeping changes, which were scheduled to be considered on November 7 as part of a regular annual review of military leadership retirements and promotions. Usually the annual changes do not affect the entire leadership.

There are different ways of interpreting these moves, notably that Greece is in a bad predicament and if emergency civilian rule is required a new set of fresh, younger military leaders could be a wise move.

Looking back at recent history, when Greece had military rulers so did for far longer Portugal and Spain. Europe I hope has moved a long way from that.

From my limited viewing of events in Greece the violence is very limited, with the focal point being the national parliament and this week I've seen footage of the Greek PM arriving at the parliament in an unescorted car (unlike David Cameron in the UK, even when driving the half mile or less to parliament).

11-04-2011, 11:42 AM
I suppose I should clarify that I see the sweeping replacement of all the heads of the service branches as an unwise move. Admittedly, I am neither Greek nor in Greece at the moment.:D

I'm mostly stumped that a sitting government would even have "some of their own" to be able to install when they are on the cusp of leaving. Then again, I've never even paid attention enough to American politics in terms of heads of service branches and the JCS, and their tours of duty, to ascertain if they are shifted around in a cycle similar to what is going on in Greece.

Still seems odd to change military leadership like that. Doing it during trying times like this seems bizarre.

12-05-2013, 05:57 PM
The Greek terrorist group 17N or 'Revolutionary Organization 17 November' was remarkable for eluding detection for so long, twenty seven years from foundation in 1975 and the first, critical arrests in 2002. Wikipedia shows:
The group assassinated 23 people[3] in 103 attacks on U.S., British, Turkish and Greek targets.Link:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Revolutionary_Organization_17_November

A new, exceptionally well reviewed book has been published 'Inside Greek Terrorism' by George Kassimeris, this comment is by Bruce Hoffman:
This is both an important and a timely work, especially given the recent re-emergence of extremist violence in Greece. Kassimeris is without any doubt the leading analyst today on Greek violent extremism and one of the leading younger scholars in the field of terrorism and political violence.From the publisher's website:
The long story of Greek terrorism was meant to have ended in the summer of 2002 with the collapse of the country’s premier terrorist organisation and one of Europe’s longest-running gangs, the notorious 17 November group (17N). However, rather than demoralising and emasculating the country’s armed struggle movement, the dismantling of 17N and the imprisonment of its members led to the emergence of new urban guerrilla groups and an upsurge in and intensification of revolutionary violence.

Given the sheer longevity of the 17N terrorist experience, George Kassimeris sets out to analyse the life histories of the group’s imprisoned members. Their stories, told through their own words, offer us a clearer picture than we have ever had of the political and ideological environment that provided the foundations upon which revolutionary terrorism took root in the mid-1970s. This book also brings up to date the gritty story of Greek terrorism by analysing the country’s post-17N generation of urban guerrilla groups, placing their extremism and violence in a broader political and cultural perspective.

Link to publisher's website:http://us2.campaign-archive2.com/?u=a3800e1d3d40b72dd38ebbd1a&id=bfc97c3da8&e=80d42c7c0a

03-08-2014, 11:50 PM
I finally got to read this book whilst commuting this week.

It is a slim book, 176 pgs and is easy to read. 17N is not the only group examined, indeed Greece has had a plethora of small terrorist groups; one killed two and then was never active again. The group is mentioned in the footnotes at the rear of the book - a reminder to me to check them as reading, not at the end.

How the Greek state failed to counter terrorism is not included - which is a weakness. The state certainly contributed to the radicalisation of tiny groups. Several times the police's propensity to accidentally fire shots during protests added "petrol to the fire" and I do not overlook the murder of police officers and others.

Well worth reading, especially how a small group can escape detection and fail to be successful - except to themselves.

03-24-2014, 03:22 PM
Greece has a long history of what many regard as extremist political activity and in recent years a new political party, New Dawn, has emerged on the right, gaining electoral support - with MPs elected - and street-level activity.

Now it appears under judicial direction New Dawn is being investigated and maybe banned:http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/mar/23/golden-dawn-women-greece-neo-nazis

Last week one Golden Dawn MP resigned, citing ignorance of the party's activities. Another was expelled after indicating that he, too, was about to leave.....The loss of its deputies reduces to 16 the number of seats the neo-Nazis control in the 300-member house – although nine MPs already face charges and six have been jailed pending trial. In February (the judicial figures) Klapa and Dimitropoulou proposed that politicians lift the immunity of another nine MPs who have so far escaped prosecution. A parliamentary vote is expected in the coming weeks.

04-03-2015, 10:07 AM
An article in The Guardian, the author is unknown to me and her mini bio says:
She was previously executive editor and managing editor of Le Monde.This article could sit in the more active thread on Russian flirting if not subversive activities with the extreme right and nationalists in democratic Europe. See Posts 64 onwards:http://council.smallwarsjournal.com/showthread.php?t=20681&page=4

Since it is about Greece it is here:http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/apr/02/tsipras-moscow-risks-putin-useful-idiot?

01-06-2017, 08:56 PM
On Friday, the anarchist leader, Panagiota Roupa, was charged with theft, forgery and participating in a terrorist organization.

Greek officials called Ms. Roupa, 47 — known by her nickname, Pola — the country’s “No. 1 most-wanted” terrorist. With her partner, Nikos Maziotis, she was a leader of Revolutionary Struggle, which carried out a string of bombings and shootings targeting the police and others starting in 2003, and fired an antitank grenade (http://www.nytimes.com/2007/01/13/world/europe/13athens.html?fta=y) at the United States Embassy in Athens in 2007. The attacks caused several injuries, but no deaths.Link:http://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/05/world/europe/panagiota-roupa-arrested-athens.html? (http://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/05/world/europe/panagiota-roupa-arrested-athens.html?smid=tw-nytimesworld&smtyp=cur&_r=0)

01-27-2018, 10:18 AM
The wheels of justice move slowly and I'd nearly forgotten members of the party were arrested; the account is not impartial and opens with:
The Golden Dawn trial, held in Athens, started in April 2015: a unique penal trial of 69 defendants, among them 18 members of the Greek Parliament, all elected on the Golden Dawn ticket. The major accusation is based on Article 187 par. 1 of the Greek Criminal Code that defines the nature of a criminal organisation. Besides this, three more serious criminal offenses are also bought before the court: the murder of Pavlos Fyssas, an anti-fascist rapper; an assassination attempt on Abuzid Embarac, an Egyptian worker; and assassination attempts on members of the Greek Communist Party.Link:https://www.opendemocracy.net/dimitris-christopoulos/he-golden-dawn-trial-major-event-for-democracy-in-greece-and-beyond?

The party had 7% support in the 2015 elections and remain the third largest political party in parliament. For background see:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_Dawn_(political_party)

03-06-2018, 02:48 PM
A swift CT police response:
Greece's counter-terrorism squad on Tuesday announced that its investigations have led to the discovery of a criminal organisation allegedly linked to the extreme right that may be involved in explosions, raids and arsonist attacks. It announced that coordinated operations were launched on Tuesday morning in Attica and other areas of Greece.

According to the police, quoted by the Ana-Mpa agency, six persons were detained and will later be placed under arrest as suspected members of the organisation, as well as for their suspected participation in a series of attacks involving explosions, firebombs and raids on locations frequented by migrants and members of anti-establishment groups.

If law enforcement is the route taken, the test will be if they are charged with offences and later convicted.

03-11-2018, 02:34 PM
An update on the arrests:
Seven suspected members of the far-right group Combat 18 Hellas testified on Saturday after defending themselves on charges of running a criminal organization. Four of the seven were remanded in pretrial custody after confessing guilt to some of the charges levelled against them, while the other three were granted conditional release.

01-19-2019, 06:54 PM
An overview of why Greece suffers from left-wing terrorism:https://newrepublic.com/article/152918/greece-hot-spot-left-wing-terrorism

06-08-2019, 07:43 PM
For the original pointer see Post No.15 on this terrorist and a new commentary by a Greek academic (based in the UK) who has written on Greek terrorism. The main article is behind a pay wall, but I use the Abstract:
Pola Roupa’s arrest in 2016 was the final nail in the coffin of Revolutionary Struggle, the first guerrilla group to emerge on Greece’s terrorist landscape after the 2002 collapse of 17 November, the country’s premier terrorist organisation for almost three decades and one of Europe’s longest-running terror gangs. Drawing on the judicial investigation findings, courtroom testimonies, RS communiqués and interviews with counter-terrorism officials, this article tells the story of Pola Roupa, the first female leader of a Greek terrorist group in an attempt to understand the political reasons and motivational factors that led to her involvement in terrorism. At the same time, the article hopefully contributes to the study and understanding of women and terrorism by providing an insight into the role and experience of a female militant inside Greece’s gender-conservative and overwhelmingly male-dominated armed struggle movement.
Link to main article:https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/1057610X.2019.1620470?journalCode=uter20

The commentary refers to longevity of Greek terrorist groups:
Roupa’s arrest was the final nail in the coffin of RS, marking the end of a 15-year campaign of politically motivated violence by the first guerrilla group to emerge on the country’s terrorist landscape after the 2002 collapse of 17N, Greece’s premier terrorist organisation and one of Europe’s longest-running terror gangs.