BosniaFacts Logo

The Bosnian Serb "capital" of Pale was not the only place where the fall of Srebrenica in July, 1995, was greeted with joy and jubilation. More subdued, yet hardly dissimilar, were the proud feelings for the “brave Serbs” expressed in Athens, Salonika, Larissa, and many other Greek cities. This was a fight between us (the Orthodox commonwealth) and them (Muslims, Catholics, Protestants, and the West),and we won. [1]

One could sense the excitement in the voices of Greek television news casters as they reported the “fall” of Srebrenica and the “total defeat” of the “Muslims.” Their excitement was understandable. After all, this victory was a combined Greek-Serbian achievement, epitomized, according to media reports, by hoisting the Greek flag alongside Serbia’s in defeated Srebrenica. Placed there by Greek paramilitaries who were fighting alongside the Bosnian Serbs, this surreal scene underlined the fact that there existed a single country in the European Union that did not share the same perceptions with the West concerning the conflict in Bosnia.

The same night the Bosnian village fell, the Greek national television station MEGA conducted a telephone interview with a brave Greek from Srebrenica: “After the artillery stopped its bombardment we moved in and ‘cleaned up’ the place!” he informed the audience, his voice trembling from excitement.

According to the Greek daily Ethnos, four flags were raised in the ruins of Srebrenica's Orthodox Church: the Serb, the Greek, that of Vergina, and that of Byzantium. “They are flying now side by side,” reported Ethnos, “a living proof of the love and solidarity of the two peoples and of the gratitude which the Serb soldiers feel for the help from the Greek volunteers who are fighting on their side.” [2]

The Greek paramilitaries and Serbs who fought there together celebrated the withdrawal of UN forces, which in effect gave the victors total control of the city. Left behind unprotected were women, children, and elderly Bosnian Muslims. The Greek volunteers fought hard in Srebrenica, and three were wounded in the process. [3] They thus had every reason to celebrate. After the victory, the Greek fighters raised the flags and sang the national anthems of the two countries at the top of their voices. [4]

Formed in March, 1995, at the request of Gen. Ratko Mladic, the “Greek Volunteer Guard”-sporting as its insignia a white double-headed eagle on a black background-quickly became a regular fighting unit. Four of its members were decorated with the medal of the “White Eagle” by Radovan Karadzic in September, I995. [5] A total of one hundred Greeks fought with the Serbs, and their main camp was in Vlasenica near Tuzla. According to spokesman George Mouratidis, the force was fully integrated into the Army of the Republika Srpska and led by Serb officers. [6] By 1996, stories about the Greek volunteers commanded one- and two-page spreads in major Greek newspapers. At the same time, some of the men became frequent guests on television talk shows. The Greek public seemed mesmerized by their stories of the hardships of military life, the danger involved in fighting the “insidious” Muslims, and the bravery of their Serb “brethren.”

When the newspaper Ethnos ran a two-page spread about their heroic exploits in Srebrenica and elsewhere in August, 1995, the popular response was overwhelming. “Our telephone lines,” wrote an editor the next day, “were constantly busy from the calls of scores of youths who were asking for information concerning the Greek force that was fighting together with the Serbs.” [7] What were these brave lads fighting for? Definitely not money; it was ideology that drew them to the battle zone. “Our religion” was the most frequent answer they gave when asked about their motives. “I am an Orthodox and I must help my Serb brethren against the Muslims,” said twenty-four-year-old Vagelis Koutakos. [8] Some attributed their service to geopolitics:“I gave my blood to fight the Muslim arc,” said Trifon Vasiliadis. [9] Others had still grander visions: “We are fighting for a Greater Greece in a Europe free from Muslims and Zionists,” proclaimed Apostolos Bambos in a television interview. [10] By fighting with the Serbs they were, in effect, fighting for the defense of their own Fatherland: “The Vatican, the Zionists, the Germans and the Americans conspire against the Orthodox nations. Their next target after Serbia will be Greece!” exclaimed volunteer Spiros Tzanopoulos. [11]

If they felt any sorrow for the slaughtered men, women, and children they must have stumbled upon in their fight for country and religion, they did not show it. But then, few of their countrymen back home showed any signs of remorse for those who were displaced, raped, or killed in Bosnia. Indeed, throughout the war there, not a single major Greek political party; not a single prominent Greek politician, businessman, priest, artist, film director, author, or trade unionist—in other words, not a single public figure of any renown—had the courage, the will, or the inclination to stand up and publicly condemn the shelling of Sarajevo or the Serb atrocities in Srebrenica, Foca, Zvornik, or anywhere else for that matter. Whereas many public events were organized in solidarity with the suffering Serbs, not a single public event was staged to protest the murderous ethnic cleansing by the Serbs in Bosnia and elsewhere.

An example of the selective sensitivities exhibited by Greek artists were the concerts Greek singers organized in Belgrade to express their solidarity with the Serb war effort. Two such concerts were particularly important. The first, held December 12, 1992, was sponsored by the Greek-Serb Friendship Association. This concert featured popular Greek singers Maria Dimitriadi and Kostas Thomaidis. [12] The second concert was held on June 30,1994, at the Sava Center in Belgrade. It featured the extremely popular Greek singer Giorgos Dalaras. The next day, Minister of Culture Nanta Popova Pertsits invited Dalaras to the ministry to congratulate him. [13]

Throughout Karadzic’s five-year effort to seize Sarajevo, not a single Greek artist or musician visited the city to express solidarity with a people who had come to represent in the West the symbol of the fight against the terror of forced ethnic homogenization. In fact, the overwhelming majority of Greek political, cultural, and business elites carefully refrained from publicly voicing anything that could be construed as even a mild criticism of Serbian human rights violations.

Whenever a Greek politician voiced criticism during the war in Bosnia it was, in most cases, directed against the occasional NATO air strike and the machinations of the West. It was the West, after all, which according to local perceptions had been responsible for the mayhem in the former Yugoslavia. Even as late as April, 1994, when the Serb atrocities had been established beyond any reasonable doubt, the only critical remarks Prime Minister Andreas Papandreou made when he met with Vladislav Jovanovic, foreign minister of the Former Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY), in Athens in April, 1994, were directed against NATO “for the policies it follows in Bosnia.” As far as the Yugoslav official was concerned, “the Greek and the Serb people are united like a fist.” [14]

Throughout the recent war in the Balkans, Athens and Belgrade were indeed united, as Jovanovic put it, “like a fist.” Those ties were a reality and they operated on all levels, although they were never formalized in a treaty or military alliance. Only once did the question of formalizing those ties appear as a real and imminent option. That happened in December, 1994,when Serbian president Slobodan Milosevic proposed, during one of his visits to Athens, the creation of a confederation between Greece and Serbia that would also include the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia(FYROM). The Greek government’s reaction to Milosevic’s proposal was positive—at least in words. Prime Minister Papandreou declared his support in principle for the proposal during a press conference: “We think that the proposal is a pioneering and interesting one which however we have not examined yet.” [15]

Papandreou, like Constantine Mitsotakis before him, was an admirer of the Serb president and never made any effort to hide it. He was always full of praise for Milosevic, whom he considered “a man of peace who plays the most important role in the pacification of the region.” [16]

George Mangakis, who a few months later became the Greek deputy foreign minister, was even more enthusiastic about Milosevic’s proposal. He saw it as a step in the formation of an Orthodox alliance—an “orthodox arc” as it was called—that would effectively protect Greece’s national interests from the “insidious powers” promoting Turkish and Muslim interests in Europe. [17]

However, the net result of Milosevic’s proposal was a serious rift in the pro-Serb policies of the Greek political establishment. A very strong reaction came from the aging conservative Greek president, Constantine Karamanlis. It took the form of leaks by “anonymous sources close to the president” who characterized Milosevic’s proposal as “unrealistic” and “dangerous.” Although it would do nothing more than provide a formal mantle to an already existing state of affairs, its acceptance would almost certainly get Greece into serious trouble with its allies in NATO and the European Community. President Karamanlis, who had had been one of the main protagonists of Greece’s entry into the EU, would never allow that to happen, so the proposal was subsequently shelved. [18]

The attitude of turning a deaf ear to Serb human rights violations also characterized the Greek Orthodox Church’s reaction. “The Orthodox Church is on the side of the Orthodox Serb people,” declared Archbishop Serapheimin May, 1993. [19] A year later, when no one doubted that the Serbs were committing massive crimes in Bosnia, the Orthodox Church leader reiterated his denomination’s unconditional support for its Orthodox brethren: “Greece should always keep in mind that our natural ally is Serbia.” He argued that the nation’s history, tradition, and ties to Serbia should determine Greece's foreign policy-even if it conflicted with the policy of Greece’s European allies. [20]

The attitude of the Greek Orthodox Church was understandable. Having been one of the most ardent supporters of the military junta that ruled Greece from 1967 to 1974, it relished its newfound role as the vanguard of this epic “clash of civilizations.” [21] Not only did the church abstain from criticizing Serb atrocities, some of its clergy also travelled regularly to war-ravaged Bosnia to provide spiritual succor to the Bosnian Serb army and to conduct church services with Serb priests in the presence of Serb officers. [22] They also visited Serb army barracks, prayed with the soldiers for final victory, and posed with them for pictures that were widely distributed in Serbia.

Such was the case with a delegation from the Greek Church that visited the Serb side of Sarajevo in early February, 1995. Led by Archimandrite Ignatios of the Diocese of Piraeus, representatives of the Greek Church met with Radovan Karadzic and visited and gave their blessings to Serb troops who had been shelling the Bosnian capital daily since April, 1992.The troops’ efforts resulted in the death of twelve thousand civilians, including seventeen hundred children. However, there was not a single mention of those tragic events in the report of the priests’ visit that appeared in a monthly journal published by the Diocese of Piraeus. On the contrary the report was full of praise for the “brave Serbs soldiers, the best in the world” who “are struggling and sacrificing themselves for their faith and their country” [23]

Occasionally Greek Orthodox priests would visit the sites of ethnic cleansing and other crimes committed against Bosnians and perform church services with their Serb brethren. Such was the case in December, 1993, when a delegation of Greek Orthodox priests from Salonika visited the Bosnian city of Zvornik. There, together with Bishop Basil of the Serb church, they conducted the Christmas liturgy in the church of Saint Nikolas, the protector of Zvornik. [24] A year earlier, a paramilitary unit known as the “Tigers,” led by Serb warlord Arkan, engaged in indiscriminate killings and other human rights violations while “cleansing” Zvornik of its Muslim population. José Maria Mendiluce, the most senior official from the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in the former Yugoslavia, who was passing through Zvornik the day it fell, said he “was detained for two hours before I realized that I was at serious risk. I could see trucks full of dead bodies. I could see militiamen taking more corpses of children, women, and old people from their houses and putting them on trucks. I saw at least four or five trucks full of corpses. When I arrived the cleansing had been done. There were no people in the streets. It was all finished” [25]

They raised the Greek flag in Srebrenica
“They raised the Greek flag in Srebrenica.” Photo from Srebrenica by Antixcholia (Athens: Carthago, ippp).

In January, 1995, the municipality of Kalamaria in Salonika declared itself a sister city to Zvornik. By that time Zvornik had been thoroughly "cleansed” of its Muslim population. [26] However, the event that defined in the most characteristic way the nature of relations between Greek political and religious leaders on one hand and Serb war leaders on the other, was the open-air mass meeting organized in Piraeus Stadium in the summer of 1993 to honour Radovan Karadzic. Invited personally by Archbishop Serapheim, Karadzic met formally with Prime Minister Constantine Mitsotakis, who at the time was the leader of the conservative New Democracy Party. He also met with Andreas Papandreou, leader of the socialist PASOK Party.

What was especially noteworthy about the event was the fact that the Greek Orthodox Church organized it. [27] This went far beyond the church's usual expressions of solidarity with the Serb Orthodox Church and the Serb people. Inviting the Serb warlord to Greece and staging celebrations in his honour were not religious acts. They were purely political acts signifying, in effect, the recognition of the Republika Srpska as a legitimate political entity with Karadzic as its prime minister. Even more serious were the moral implications of this act. The identification of the Greek Church with the Bosnian Serb leader meant the endorsement of the politics of ethnic cleansing directed against the Bosnian Muslim civilian population, as well as the practice of shelling Sarajevo daily.

The support and endorsement of Karadzic’s policies by the Greek Orthodox Church was also evident in statements made after the meeting between the Bosnian Serb leader and the head of the Greek Church. “I have to stress that both the Greek and the Serbian churches are deeply patriotic, ”Karadzic told Archbishop Serapheim, who replied that the Greek people were watching the Serbs’ struggle with great interest and were on their side.“The Greek Church,” he added, “cannot but support together with the Greek people the struggle of the Serbs.” [28] The Greek-Serb Friendship Association and its president, Aris Mousionis, were also instrumental in bringing Karadzic to Greece. Formed in 1992, this group played a pivotal role in propagating the Serb view during the wars in the former Yugoslavia. Mousionis, who was present at the meeting between the Greek Orthodox prelate and the Bosnian Serb warlord, told me some years later that Archbishop Serapheim "was ecstatic at having met Karadzic. At one point in the meeting Karadzic tried to kiss the archbishop’s hand, but the latter pushed him gently away saying, ‘It is I who must kiss your feet!’” [29]

Radovan Karadzic awarding the medal of the “White Eagle” to Greek paramilitaries in SeptemberRadovan Karadzic awarding the medal of the “White Eagle” to Greek paramilitaries in September, ippf. Photo from the author’s private archive.

Aris Mousionis was also present in the meeting between Karadzic and PASOK leader Andreas Papandreou, who a few months later again became the Greek prime minister. “Papandreou was a great admirer of Karadzic, "he later told me. “However, he was not very knowledgeable about what was going on in the war in Bosnia nor did he have any historical knowledge of Yugoslavia and the crisis. It is indicative of his ignorance that throughout the meeting he kept calling Karadzic “Comrade,” as if the latter were a communist partisan!” According to Mousionis, Papandreou’s warm support for the Bosnian Serbs derived primarily from his irritation concerning theWest’s lack of support for the Greek claims vis-à-vis Turkey and Macedonia.

Apart from the Greek Orthodox Church, which was the main organizer of the festivities honouring Karadzic, leading Greek politicians representing the nation’s entire political spectrum also took part. There to honour the Bosnian Serb leader were Kostas Karamanlis, leader of the New Democracy Party, and Minister of Defense Akis Tsochatzopoulos of the PASOK Partyas well as leading politicians from the smaller parties. In response to the thunderous applause of the masses of people who had come to see him, Karadzic declared: “Everybody is telling us to lay down our arms because we are alone. We say no, we are not alone. We have with us God and the Greeks.” [30] Taking the floor after the Serb leader, the representative of the Greek Orthodox Church replied: “Greece is on the side of its Orthodox Serb brethren who are suffering trials and humiliations. We have a holy duty to help our brethren to face this ordeal” [31]

What was interesting about this event was not only the fact that official Greece-its church, political class, trade unions, and so forth-organized festivities for someone suspected of being responsible for serious crimes, but also that the Greek state forcibly tried to keep citizens from protesting Karadzic's presence. The same day the festivities were being held, four members of the small Maoist group OAKKE were arrested by police in Athens for putting up posters that read: “Throw the butcher Karadzic out of Greece.” [32] This political group, consisting of just a handful of people, was the only force that tried to stage a public protest during the Serb warlord’s visit.

But the honours that Greece bestowed on Karadzic, did not end with these celebrations. In August the municipality of the island of Zakinthos decided to make the Bosnian leader an honorary citizen of the community. This event was to take place in the context of the celebrations for the protector of the island, Saint Dionisius. [33] The decision by a municipality of no particular political or economic importance was significant in that it showed the spontaneous feelings of approval, if not adoration, for Radovan Karadzic that existed throughout the country. In fact, none of the events honouring Karadzic evoked negative reactions other than those of a handful of intellectuals and journalists who had adopted dissenting positions at the very outset of war in the former Yugoslavia. They were considered natural expressions of the solidarity Greek citizens were supposed to feel and show for their fellow Orthodox Christians.

However, outside Greece the activities raised a storm of protest. Especially strong were the protests organized in Germany by the “Society of Threatened Peoples” and its leader, Tilman Zuelch, who had taken a very active part in past demonstrations against the military dictatorship that ruled Greece from 1967 to 1974. He had also organized protests against the Turkish invasion and occupation of the northern part of Cyprus in 1974. In that sense, he could by no means be accused of harbouring anti-Greek feelings.

In March, 1994, Zuelch, together with thirty Bosnians and some German women, occupied the Greek section of the International Tourist Fair in Berlin. The occupiers raised a banner that read: “Greece supports Serb war criminals.” He explained the reasons for the action in an interview with a Greek newspaper: “We are protesting about Bosnia. We accuse Greece for cooperating with the Serb government in order to annihilate the Bosnians.”According to Zuelch, Greece, by supplying the Serb war machine with petroleum products from Salonika, was violating the international embargo. Moreover, war criminals like Milosevic and Karadzic were being treated like heroes in Greece. [34]

Radovan Karadzic next visited Greece at the end of January, 1994, when he met with Andreas Papandreou-who had again become prime minister. He also met with Foreign Minister Karolos Papoulias. The official reason for his visit was to attend a medical conference on “The effects of the embargo and the war on the health of the Serb people.” [35]

What the Bosnian Serb leader enjoyed most about Greece was visiting the little harbour near Piraeus formerly known as Turkolimano (“the harbour of the Turk”) but which had recently been linguistically “cleansed” and renamed Mikrolimano (“the small harbour”). There he would sit, sipping ouzo while regaling the company of intellectuals, journalists, and politicians who had gathered to see him with stories about the unjust war the “foreigners” had imposed upon his country.

“Passersby taking their stroll this warm summer night,” read a typical newspaper report of Karadzic’s outings, “would stop to shake hands with the Serb leader. The fact that they could not speak his language did not seem to matter. The warm handshake, the expressions in their eyes, were enough to express their solidarity” [36]

Karadzic came and went. And so did Milosevic, who visited Greece in January and April, 1991, and March, 1992. The above, of course, refer only to official visits made by the two leaders. [37] One can only speculate on their reputed incognito visits. Other dignitaries from Belgrade and Pale regime visited Greece during this period as guests of the Greek government, the church, trade unions, political parties, and student unions. Those official invitations rarely included members of the hard-pressed antiwar opposition in Serbia, and never, of course, any Bosnians. “The Greek Embassy in Belgrade was unwilling to grant visas to members of the Serb democratic opposition,” said Milan Protic, a leading figure in the opposition. “We never felt welcome in the Greek Embassy.” Protic became mayor of Belgrade after Milosevic's fall in October, 2000. [38] For the majority of Greeks, the only Serbia that existed was that of Milosevic, Karadzic, and Mladic.

The role of the Greek media in downplaying or even failing to report Serb atrocities cannot be underestimated. “People in Greece were not informed about the crimes committed in Bosnia,” said Athanasios Papan-dropoulos, former president of the European Union of Journalists. “The way most media downplayed or failed to mention the horrors of Srebrenica and other sites of crimes reminds me of the way some neorevisionist historians downplayed or denied the existence of Auschwitz.” [39]

Throughout the war in the former Yugoslavia one would have been hard-pressed to find mention in a Greek newspaper of a single editorial condemning the crimes against the Bosnian Muslims (Bosniaks). Moreover, reports of Serb atrocities by the United Nations, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and others would rarely command more than a few lines in the inside pages of most newspapers-and then only to be dismissed as part of the Western "propaganda campaign” aimed at discrediting Orthodoxy.

On the contrary, what one found was a steady diet of horrid Muslim atrocities. Let us consider the four-month period September through December, 1992. In September, the Greek people were informed that basements in Sarajevo had been transformed into torture chambers in which more than ten thousand Serbs were being maltreated. The news in October concerned two poor Serbs who had been roasted alive after being tied on aspit by evil Muslims. That same month, the Greek public was horrified to hear that the Bosnians were getting ready to use deadly toxic gases against advancing Serb forces. In December, Greek readers saw pictures of Muslims posing with big grins on their faces while holding in their hands the heads of three decapitated Serbs. [40]

The war in Bosnia was covered almost exclusively by correspondents reporting from Pale, Belgrade, or the Serb part of Sarajevo. Not a single Greek journalist was accredited by the legal government of Bosnia-Herzegovina. Nor was a single Greek journalist based in the real Sarajevo during the war. This meant, Ios pointed out, that the totality of the reporting in Greece from the war originated from the Serb side of the war front. As a result, Ios concluded, “the reporting reproduced to a large extent the Serb view of events.” [41] Although Greek correspondents covered the expulsion of Krajina Serbs in the minutest detail, no Greek news organization deemed it worthwhile to send its journalists to cover the horrors of Srebrenica, Gorazde, Foca, Zepa, or the concentration camps.

Throughout this period, three things stand out that were emblematic for the questionable nature of the media coverage of the war. The first was the fact that war reporting was in most cases filtered through incessant pro-Serb editorializing. The second concerned the coverage of the daily shelling of Sarajevo. Whenever they were reporting the news from Sarajevo, one journalist noted, the majority of the Greek media always omitted two very central facts: “That the victims in most cases were unarmed civilian residents of Sarajevo and that the killers are in most cases Serb nationalist paramilitaries (Chetniks) that occupy the surrounding hills.” [42] The third characteristic of media manipulation consisted of showing the horrors committed by the Serbs but then attributing them directly or indirectly to the Croats or Bosniaks.

One such case happened during a visit to the destroyed city of Vukovar organized by the Serbs for the benefit of some Greek journalists. In most of the stories that appeared in the Greek press reporting the visit, one could hardly find a single line indicating that it was the Serbs that had caused the massive destruction. Indeed, the impression the reader was bound to form in many cases was that the Croatians had bombed themselves! [43]

A similar event occurred on June 19,1995, during a broadcast of the state-run television channel ET-2. That evening, the station aired a French documentary on the tragedy of Sarajevo. However, the station followed up this excellent documentary with telephone calls to viewers asking them to contribute money to a bank account belonging to the Greek- Serb Friendship Association, the chief promoter of Serb views in Greece!

Leonida Chatziprodromidi, the leading Greek analyst of the war in the Balkans, says that the Greek media in many cases consciously engaged in what Stjepan Mestrovic calls “postemotionalism.” According to Chatzi-prodromidis, “The Greek media tried not to see what was actually happening by escaping into the past, into history, into the myths they were creatingin order to justify or hide the crimes.” [44]

Take the seizure of Vukovar. During the Yugoslav army’s three-month bombardment of that city, the Greek media kept informing its audience about the massacres the Ustashi had committed in 1941. Another example is the events in Bosnia. While the forces of Mladic, Seselj, and Arkan were killing innocent civilians in Bijeljina, Brcko, Zvornik, Foca, Prijedor and many other places in Bosnia, the Greek media kept describing events as the “advance of the Serb army” and reminding their audience about the proud partisan tradition of the Serbs and their fight against the Nazis during World War II. [45]

The majority of Greek reporters were more interested in presenting the views of the Belgrade regime than the actual events. This opinion was shared by Serb opposition figures. “We learned much more about the activities of the Milosevic regime from the media in the West than from the Greek media,” said Sasa Mirkovic, vice president of radio station B92. [46] Zoran Mutic, a Serb intellectual and translator of Greek literature in Serbo-Croatian, was even more blunt in his assessment of the situation: “The Greek media are carrying out a naive pro-Serb disinformation campaign. In no other country in the world has something similar happened.” [47]

What was equally distressing was the fact that the Greek media unwittingly became part of the power struggle that was going on in Belgrade. Serb authorities were using pro- Milosevic articles written in the Greek press in their fight against the Serb democratic opposition. According to Petar Lukovic, who at the time was deputy editor of the Belgrade weekly opposition paper Vreme, the Milosevic regime was “using the Greek media in order to strengthen its power.” [48]

One of the worst cases of misuse of the Greek media by the Milosevic regime happened in the early 1990s when a Greek weekly published a European Community document stating the names of Serb opposition political organizations that were being financed by Brussels. For Sasa Mirkovic, “this act constituted one of the most serious and dangerous attempts at undermining the efforts of the Serb opposition by presenting its members as being in the payroll of foreign powers.” An attitude of neglect verging on contempt characterized relations between the Greek government and the independent media in Belgrade. “The Greek governments,” added Mirkovic, “refused to recognize the role of the independent media in Serbia. They did not know and they did not want to know what was happening in our country” [49]

Of course, not everybody shared those negative feelings about the Greek media's coverage of the war. The Serb authorities were thrilled and would go out of their way to praise Greek reporters for their “constructive” and “objective” accounts of events. “The Greek journalists,” said Press Minister Pavlovic in March, 1993, “showed great strength in resisting the false accusations against the Serb people and Serbia that are being fabricated abroad.”He added that Greek journalists could be counted on to objectively report the facts. [50] Serb warlords were equally grateful for the role of the Greek media. “I want to thank the Greek press for their support,” warlord Arkan told a group of Greek journalists visiting him in Bosnia in 1993. [51]

In some cases, Greek officials reportedly tried to prevent Western journalists based in Greece from contacting Muslims in “ethnically cleansed ”areas in Bosnia. This was the case with Dutch journalist Ingeborg Beugel, who in the fall of 1994 travelled with a Greek humanitarian aid convoy whose destination was, as was nearly always the case, the Bosnian Serbs. The convoy was organized by Greek trade unions and its destinations were Banja Luka and Doboj. As she reported in the Dutch weekly Elsevier and in her radio news program in Amsterdam, Greek officials physically prevented her from talking with Muslims who were too old or too sick to leave the area. “When I tried to talk to a Muslim family in a Red Cross Center, the Greek organizer grabbed my tape recorder and pulled me forcibly out of the room while shouting: ‘Don’t you know that you should not be talking to them!’” [52]

The Greek-Serb Friendship Association and its president, Aris Mousionis, organized many of the visits to Bosnia’s ethnically cleansed sites by Greek journalists. In the spring of 2001, when I asked him why Greek reporters never mentioned the fate of the Bosnians, he said: “The media wanted stories of Serb bravery not of Muslim suffering. We were only too happy to oblige. As for the journalists, they were behaving in exactly the same way as the rest of the Greek population.”

Throughout the war in Bosnia, the Serb propaganda machine exploited the traditional fears and prejudices the majority of Greeks entertained about Turkey [53] Thus, in their interviews and statements to the Greek media, Serb dignitaries would repeat the same message: Greece is facing a Turkish- Muslim threat; a Muslim arc is encircling Greece. This message soon achieved the status of a mantra in Greek public discourse as the media conjured up a powerful picture of bloodstained mujahideen of preferably Turkish descent ready to swarm into Greece. [54]

Slobodan Milosevic was one of the first to realize the powerful appeal this message would have on the Greek psyche. On his visit to Greece on March 16, 1991-just before he ordered the attack on Bosnia-he declared that “the spirit that united us during the period of Turkish rule” once again united Greeks and Serbs. It is noteworthy that he made this statement during his visit to the Holy Mount of Athos, a major center of the Eastern Orthodox spiritual tradition. [55]

The message of the common Turkish-Muslim threat the two nations faced was cleverly reinforced by various Serb leaders during the frequent inter-views they gave to a Greek media only too eager to publish them. In 1996,General Mladic told journalist Theodoros Rousopoulos that if war broke out between the Greeks and Turks, Greece could count on having “50,000 Serbs on her side.” [56] In a similar vein, Radovan Karadzic declared in front of a Greek delegation visiting Pale that the Serbs would fight on the side of the Greeks if the latter were to face a Turkish attack. [57] On another occasion, the Bosnian Serb leader stressed that he was in contact with members of the Kurdish national patriotic movement, who were “ fighting for their freedom.” [58]

“In Bosnia, 10,000 Turks are fighting on the side of the Bosniaks,” warlord Arkan told another interviewer. “We must bring about the union of all the Orthodox peoples. It is not only Serbia that is threatened by Turkey but also Greece.” [59]

Sometimes Serb officials went so far as to claim that they were fighting the Bosnians because they wanted to protect Greece. This was the case with the "defense minister” of the Serb Republic, Dusan Kovacevic, who stated that the war in Bosnia stemmed from the fact “that the Turks want to encircle Greece through the creation of a Muslim state in the area with the intention of isolating Greece from its Orthodox neighbours.” [60] The Serb leaders were also adept at exploiting the Greek Orthodox penchant for conspiracy theories. One of the most talented in this respect was Radovan Karadzic, who in February, 1992, revealed a “satanic” German plan to colonize Bosnia with Turkish immigrants from Germany in an effort to facilitate the spread of Islam throughout the Balkans. [61] He also thanked the Greek journalists interviewing him for their support.

Occasionally racial arguments were advanced in an effort to promote Greek-Serb unity. In December, 1993, Dusan Kanazir, a member of the Serb Academy of Science, told a Greek audience that they “and the Serbs share a common genetic inheritance.” The only reaction to this statement came from the Athens Academy and the Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which decorated him for it. [62]

The Serbs’ unparalleled sophistication in trying to sell their message to the Greeks was matched only by the latter’s occasionally impressive naiveté and inability to see through the Serb gimmicks. The following incident is indicative of this state of affairs. According to reports in the Greek media, members of a team of Greek actors visiting the Serb- occupied part of Sarajevo were particularly impressed by indicted war criminal Ratko Mladic, who gave them a welcoming speech. What impressed them most, they declared afterward, was Mladic’s knowledge of classical Greece. [63]

The constant repetition of the theme of the “Muslim threat” repeated in innumerable articles in Greek newspapers was extremely effective. It thus was not surprising that the majority of the Greek population looked favourably upon Serb attempts to eliminate this “threat” in Bosnia. A May 1994,poll showed that 72 percent of Greeks (as opposed to the European average of 32 percent) favoured the withdrawal of “foreign [peacekeeping] forces "from Bosnia. The consequence of such a move would have been the annihilation of the seriously under armed Bosniaks. It is perhaps worth noting that there were no Greek troops in Bosnia at the time, so it cannot be argued that the poll expressed a desire to bring home Greek soldiers.

“From the moment the Bosniaks were demonized by the mass media, the church and the politicians as being ‘infidels,’ ‘friends of the Turks,’[and] ‘Muslims’,” explained Ilias Katsoulis, a political science professor at Panteion University in Athens, “every crime committed against them was justified in the eyes of the average Greek.” [64]

The same attitude was reflected in the humanitarian assistance Greece was providing to the war-torn region. Despite the fact that the ethnic group that suffered most in the war was the Bosnian Muslims, they received little of the semi-official Greek aid to the former Yugoslavia. The final destination of nearly all the humanitarian convoys starting from Greece was either Serbia or Serb-held areas in Bosnia, where the shipments ended up in the hands of the Serbs—or rather in the hands of the local Mafia, which had the first saying the way the food was distributed. [65]

Moreover, the Greek government was also accused of reneging on its 1993 promise to the UNHCR to accept 150 former inmates of Bosnian concentration camps. It did this by imposing conditions that disqualified Bosnian Muslims. A representative from the UNHCR said that they believed “Greece placed those terms on purpose to avoid having Muslim refugees.” Greek authorities denied the allegation. [66]

Perhaps the saddest aspect of the anti-Muslim prejudice was the “ethnicfiltering” Greek authorities employed when they invited children from Bosnia too visit Greece as a humanitarian gesture. In almost all cases, the so-called Bosnian children turned out to be ethnic Serbs, in many cases not even from Bosnia. [67]

It may be of some interest to note that the anti-Muslim fears did not abate-even after the Dayton agreements. At that time they were being fuelled by secret intelligence reports that were being “leaked” to the media. These reports predicted attacks by ferocious Islamic mujahideen against the Greek soldiers stationed in Bosnia as part of the UN peacekeeping force (IFOR). In February, 1996, a purportedly classified report by the Greek Intelligence Agency (EYP) “leaked” to the media stated that the Greek military mission in Visoko would probably be attacked by Muslim forces and the act attributed to the Serbs. This would provide the IFOR with an excuse to intervene. [68] The attack never materialized.

But it was not only the message of the Muslim threat that helped cement the Greek-Serb alliance. An equally powerful message concerned the threat to the Greek Orthodox people posed by the Vatican. Some claimed that the Pope's incessant scheming was the main factor in the dissolution of Yugoslavia and the ensuing bloodshed. Archbishop of Greece Christodoulos, who at the time was the Bishop of Dimitrias, voiced one of the most representative expressions of this view: “We saw the Vatican siding with the international forces of Evil in order to implement the New Order of things which prefigures Antichrist.” [69]

However, representatives of Greece’s established church were not the only ones to promulgate the anti-Catholic message. The country’s political leadership voiced similar views. During the period of the New Democracy government (1991–93) Deputy Defense Minister Spilios Spiliotopoulos, who was reportedly very close to President Karamanlis, stated that the Vatican was financing the Bosnian Muslims in their fight against the Serbs. [70] During a meeting of the Western European Union in Paris in December, 1992,the Greek official stated that the Bank of the Vatican had given the Bosnians $200 million, which the latter used to buy arms. This statement by the Greek minister alarmed Greece’s small Catholic community and led to strong protests by its religious leaders. [71]

In the same vein, PASOK’s deputy, George Romaios, who later became the minister of public order, argued that the Vatican had placed its political and economic power at the service of the Bosnian Muslims, the aim being "the weakening of Orthodox Serbia and the strengthening of the Vatican's role in the ‘New Order’ that is being planned for the Balkans.” [72]

However, the most significant statement in this torrent of official anti-Catholic discourse belonged to PASOK Party leader Andreas Papandreou. In an analysis of the crisis in Yugoslavia published in Ta Nea a few months before he again became Greece’s prime minister, Papandreou laid the blame for Yugoslavia’s dissolution squarely at the feet of the Vatican and Germany, while making no mention of Milosevic’s role in fermenting ethnic unrest and nationalist feelings in his thousand-word article. The crisis in Yugoslavia, wrote Papandreou, “was nurtured by the two old friends from the Second World War: Germany and the Vatican.”

Such a statement originating from the leader of an EU and NATO country was remarkable not only for its allocation of blame for the mayhem in Yugoslavia, it was also remarkable in its insinuation that the Vatican had been allied with Nazi Germany during the War World II and that the present relationship between the two was based on the same ties that had defined their relationship during the period of Nazi rule. [73]

Not only did the majority of Greeks fail to shed any tears for the victims of Serb aggression in Bosnia, many rallied in support of the indicted perpetrators of the crimes. Thus, within a few weeks after the announcement by the War Crimes Tribunal of the indictments of Radovan Karadzic and Ratko Mladic, the Greek-Serb Friendship Association was able to collect two million signatures for a declaration asking the tribunal to stop the prosecution of the two Serbs. [74] “We collected signatures everywhere,” said treasurer Lykourgos Chazakos. “In the factories, in the offices, in the streets, in the neighbourhoods. The reaction of the people was overwhelming. We met with representatives of all political parties. They all showed tremendous understanding for our views. Especially encouraging were the people at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.” [75]

It may be of some interest to note that the Greek-Serb Friendship Association was subsidized by the Greek state. Thus, a list including the names of the nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) funded by the Greek Foreign Ministry that was published in January, 2001, revealed that during the previous year this organization received $200,000-a significant sum by Greek standards. [76]

With respect to the issue of human rights violations in Bosnia, both the New Democracy government and the PASOK government that succeeded it followed a two-faced policy. On one hand, Greece signed the various resolutions in the UN Security Council, NATO, and the EU condemning the human rights violations that were taking place. On the other hand, however, all Greek governments made certain that those decisions received little publicity in Greece. In most public statements and interviews, the Greek ministers at best attributed the blame for the mass atrocities in Bosnia equally to all the participants in the war or at worst avoided any mention of them—as if they had never taken place. “Greece,” writes Alexis Heraklides, who at the time was employed at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and is currently a senior lecturer at Panteion University in Athens, “showed indifference and failed to condemn the merciless bombing of civilian populations (Vukovar, Sarajevo) or the practice of ethnic cleansing simply because those acts happened to be committed by the Bosnian Serbs.” [77] The Greek authorities stuck to the “everyone is equally to blame” line, even in the cases where the audience was Muslim and pro-Bosnian. The Greek ambassador to Tehran John Thomoglou, when asked in an interview with the Iranian daily Resalat, July 24, 1995, whether the Serb conduct was violating human rights, replied: “The war between the Serbs and the Muslims is a full-fledged war. Heinous acts have been committed by both sides. Sometimes one side commits a heinous act and sometimes it is the other side who commits a more heinous crime.” In the few cases where the Greek government had no alternative but to condemn the Serbs for their atrocities, it resorted to an extreme legalese that was incomprehensible to most people.

Such was the case with Srebrenica. When Foreign Minister Karolos Papoulias learned that the city had fallen into the hands of the Bosnian Serbs, he condemned the act because it violated “Articles 819, 824, and 836 of the Security Council Resolutions.” [78] Nevertheless, Papoulias voiced no concern about the atrocities that were almost certain to happen. Nor did any of the other Greek political parties, with the exception of the small left-wing party Sinaspismos, which condemned the event in the strongest of terms.

On 11 July 1995, ten members of the Greek Volunteer Guard and an eleventh Greek serving in a death squad unit invaded Srebrenica, along with Ratko Mladic’s troops and paramilitaries. Five of them can be seen in this photo. Their names are Spyros Tzanopoulos (EEF sergeant and member of the central committee of the neonazi Golden Dawn ), Dimitris Zavitsanos (EEF master sergeant), Anna Florin, Schisas Vasilis, Kyriakidis, G. Lymperidis and Charalambos Dimoulas.

Belgrade understood perfectly well that the Greek signing of various EU,UN, and NATO communiqués condemning Serb human rights violations in reality meant nothing. Foreign Minister Jovanovic revealed this during a visit to Greece in February, 1994. When asked by a journalist whether he was uncomfortable with the fact that Greece had signed some NATO and EU statements critical of Serbia’s policies, he excused the Greeks by saying that they had been “forced” to sign those statements by their partners. “We understand,” he said, “that although Greece signed those declarations, her heart lay elsewhere.” [79]

The Greek government never protested Jovanovic’s assertion that it was not acting of its own free will. Nor did the Greek government take exception to Jovanovic’s statement that Greece’s heart “lay elsewhere.” The FRY foreign minister was right, though. The heart of Greece’s political class did not lie in the killing fields of Srebrenica or Zvornik. Its heart indeed lay elsewhere. When Prime Minister Mitsotakis returned from a failed peace mission to Pale in April, 1993, he was reportedly ecstatic after having met Ratko Mladic and Radovan Karadzic all dressed up in battle gear. Mitsotakis told close relatives that they reminded him of the heroes of the Greek war of independence. His successor, Andreas Papandreou, who publicly called Radovan Karadzic “a peace fighter,” was equally touched. [80]

Although both Mitsotakis and Papandreou paid scant attention to the issue of human rights violations in Bosnia, their reasons for doing so were different. As far as Mitsotakis was concerned, the few times I had the chance to raise the issue with him I got the impression that he was aware that atrocities were taking place. However, he seemed to consider this fact peripheral, something to be expected in a Balkan conflict. Papandreou’s attitude was different. “Papandreou never raised the issue of human rights violations in our discussions,” said Aris Mousionis, one of his advisers. “He believed that the reports about the atrocities the Serbs had committed were prefabricated and that in any case atrocities are parts of a war. We all believed at the time that the Serbs were the bearers of the international struggle against the New World Order and the plans of the imperialists. We believed that the fight of the Serbs didn’t aim at the annihilation of the other ethnic groups but that it was directed against the forces of imperialism in the region.” [81]

The charge of “duplicity” against the policies of the Greek governments vis-à-vis their partners in the European Community and NATO was a common one in the early 1990s. One of the main critics of Greece’s policies was Daniel Cohn-Bendit, a member of the “Greens” in the European Parliament and one of the leading figures of the student uprising in Paris in May, 1968.

According to Cohn-Bendit, the Greek governments were playing a double game in the case of Serbia. To the West they stressed that Greece’s traditional friendship with Serbia allowed it to act as a mediator. To the Serbs, on the other hand, they said that their good relations with the West allowed them to represent them. “I think,” Cohn-Bendit concluded, “that what we are dealing with here is an extreme case of Levantine duplicity” [82] In the same vein, noted analyst Jacques Amalric also questioned the credibility of the Greek governments. Writing in the French daily Liberation, he posed the question as to whether “one would ever be able to forgive [French president] Valerie Giscard d’Estaing for letting Greece into the European Community?” Moreover, he continued: “We have known for quite some time the sympathies of Greece for Mr. Milosevic’s Serbia and the violation by Greece of the embargo that has been imposed against the Belgrade regime even if the Western powers prefer to close their eyes. But today Greece by the very statements of some of its leaders dispels the myth concerning its purportednon- involvement in the Balkan crisis and is thus destroying a priori its credibility as a mediator.” [83]

Perhaps the duplicity did not remain only at the level of words. According to Aris Mousionis, Prime Minister Andreas Papandreou was leaking NATO military secrets regarding the air strikes the alliance had initiated on August 30, 1995, to the Bosnian Serb leadership and especially to General Mladic. Mousionis, a doctor, in addition to being the founder and president of the Greek-Serb Friendship Association, advised Prime Minister Papandreou on the Bosnia war and was his personal intermediary with Radovan Karadzic and Slobodan Milosevic. This fact has been widely reported in the Greek media. [84] In addition to having a Greek diplomatic pass issued to him on the personal orders of the prime minister, he also possessed a document carrying the signature of General Mladic guaranteeing him safe conduct in the area controlled by the Bosnian Serbs.

“At the end of August, 1995, I was staying in a villa in Bosnia near the Serb border, which belonged to former prime minister Bjedic,” Mousionis recalled during the interview. “I was guarded by about sixty soldiers-even my secretary and my cook were military people. During that period I was receiving messages from the Greek military headquarters in Athens which I was passing on to General Mladic. The information concerned the air strikes that NATO had initiated against the Bosnian Serbs. Only Andreas Papandreou knew the content of those messages-neither his minister of defense nor the chief of staff of the Greek armed forces [knew]. The sealed envelope containing the details of the planned NATO air strikes was directly delivered from the NATO’s headquarters in Naples to Prime Minister Andreas Papandreou. He then gave the envelope with the plans to a person of his absolute confidence-whom only he and I knew-who took it to the military headquarters in Athens from where its contents were relayed to me. We used three codes because we had learned that the Americans had broken one. I received and immediately decoded the messages. I then gave them to Ratko Mladic's deputy commander, who delivered them personally to the General. Later, during the bombings, NATO intelligence found out that its plans were being leaked to the Bosnian Serbs and they stopped informing the Greeks, an event which led to strong protests by the latter.” [85]

Let me stress here that I have not been able to obtain independent confirmation regarding Mousionis’s claims. In May, 2001, former Greek defense minister Gerasimos Arsenis, who served in that capacity during NATO’s air campaign in Bosnia, said that although he was aware of rumours that Greece was leaking NATO flight plans to General Mladic, an investigative committee he appointed to examine whether there was any truth to the allegations was unable to confirm them. When I asked him if it was possible Prime Minister Papandreou had personally transmitted the information without anybody knowing about it, he replied: “I doubt that Papandreou himself could have done such a thing. By that time his health was in a very poor state. He was extremely dependent on the people who were around him. I knew that he had independent channels of contact with General Mladic through a personal intermediary, a Greek doctor.”

The Greek state’s approach to the deliberations of the War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague can at best be characterized as dismissive. From the very beginning, the court was met with distrust. For example, PASOK government spokesman Evangelos Venizelos said: “The problem of Bosnia can only be solved by political means. It would be an unforgivable legalism to try to solve the problem with judicial means.” [86] The Greek government's attitude toward the War Crimes Tribunal found its clearest expression in a statement by Theodore Pangalos, who at the time was the acting foreign minister of the PASOK government in power. After a meeting of European foreign ministers, he expressed strong objections to the deliberations of the tribunal because it was negatively predisposed toward the Serbs. He argued that because all sides had committed crimes, “it would be irrational to condemn Mr. Karadzic without looking for the corresponding leaders that have tolerated or promoted analogous acts. It is essential that we should stop demonizing only one side if we want peace and fairness.” [87] This marked the first time the foreign minister of an EU or NATO member country made a statement challenging the impartiality of the UN War Crimes Tribunal. Moreover, the statement lent legitimacy to similar arguments used by Bosnian Serbs war criminals to justify their lack of cooperation with the tribunal.

Another fact revealing the Greek state’s lack of interest in the subject of human rights violations and its unwillingness to assist the tribunal, was its failure to take action against the Greek paramilitaries who, some of their members admitted, were fighting alongside the Bosnian Serbs. During the war in Bosnia, Greek authorities ignored the open recruitment of people in Greece to fight against the legal government of Bosnia. They also did nothing to prevent the publicly organized collection of material help to support members of this fighting unit. In other words, the Greek government tolerated activities that arguably constituted acts of aggression against the sovereignty of a UN-recognized country and its government.

The “Greek Volunteer Guard,” by the open and proud admission of its own members, took part in the events that led up to the murder of eight thousand innocent civilians in Srebrenica. Whenever the issue of the participation of Greek paramilitaries in the Srebrenica slaughter was raised, the Greek authorities kept feigning ignorance. When the Greek ambassador to Tehran John Thomoglou was asked about this incident by the Iranian daily Resalat, July 24, 1995, he replied, “Personally, I have not heard that Greek volunteers entered Srebrenica and hoisted the Greek flag.”

In 1996 I asked a government spokesman whether the Greek government intended to investigate the activities of the individuals who had participated with the Bosnian Serb forces in the operations in Srebrenica and elsewhere. In the written reply I received, it was asserted that “Greece does not have any evidence concerning the involvement of Greek citizens in war-crimes in Bosnia-Herzegovina.” I returned to this issue in January 2000, when I sent a letter to Minister of Justice Evangelos Yannopoulos inquiring what step she was thinking of taking in this matter. The reply I received from his spokesperson, a Mr. Georgoulis, the next day was: “The issue does not concern the minister.”

In 1996 I asked Christos Rozakis, who later served as vice president of the European Court of Human Rights, to evaluate the Greek government’s positions on the issues of human rights violations in the wars in the former Yugoslavia. Rozakis, who is also a close friend and senior adviser to Prime Minister Kostas Simitis replied: “At least the present [Simitis] government keeps a constructive silence. This is a big advance in relation to the previous ones that celebrated every time our Serb brethren committed a new horror.” [88]

Christos Rozakis’s story is particularly instructive. A professor of international law at the University of Athens, Rozakis had, since 1987, served as a member of the European Commission of Human Rights in the Council of Europe. After the fall, 1996, elections in Greece, Prime Minister Simitis appointed him deputy foreign minister. What was noteworthy about the appointment was that Rozakis was the most consistent and sophisticated critic of his country’s foreign and human rights policies. [89] He had repeatedly argued that Greece’s pro-Serbian attitude would result in its marginalization in the international community and he had also disagreed strongly with Greece’s aggressive policies toward Macedonia. From the very moment Rozakis set foot in the Foreign Office he became the object of virulent attacks from the nationalist elements within his own party and the conservative opposition. The most obnoxious attack came from a deputy from the conservative New Democracy Party who asked the government to investigate Rozakis’s Jewish origins because he thought they might “indicate suspect connections to enemy foreign powers.” The reaction of the majority of the Greek political class was muted and the leader of the Greek Jewish community, Nasim Mais, expressed his “deep worry and disappointment.”Rozakis stayed at the Foreign Office for five months. By early February1997, he felt he had had enough. He resigned and left Greece. [90]


1. The quote used as the chapter title comes from a statement by Vladislav Jovanovic,foreign minister of the Former Republic of Yugoslavia, in Athens in April, 1994. [1]
2. Ethnos, July 13, 1995.
3. Ibid., Aug. 8, 1995.
4. Ibid., July 13, 1995.5. Ibid., Aug. 20, 1995.
6. Eleftherotypia, July 23, 1995.
7. Ethnos, Aug. 2, 1995.
8. Quoted in Eleftherotypia, July 8, 1993.
9. Quoted in Ethnos, Aug. 20, 1995.
10. Quoted on a talk show aired by popular television station SKY in August, 1995. Afull transcript was published in the weekly Christ Avgi, Sept. 8, 1995.
11. Quoted in Eleftheri Ora, Sept. 25, 1995.
12. Antischolio, Srebrenica, 199.
13. Ibid., 220.
14. Quoted in Eleftherotypia, April 17, 1994. Papandreou, leader of the socialist PASOKParty, served as Greece’s prime minister from 1981—89 and from 1993—96. He died in Athens in 1996 at the age of seventy-seven.
15. Quoted in Elefiherotypia, Dec. 21, 1994.
16. Quoted in Eleftherotypia, Dec. 20,1994. Mitsotakis was leader of the conservative NewDemocracy (ND) Party. He served as prime minister of Greece from 1990—1993, when his partylost the elections to PASOK. He considers himself to be one of Milosevic’s close friends.
17. Ibid., Dec. 27, 1994.
18. Ibid., Dec. 21, 1994.
19. Ibid., May 15, 1993. Archbishop Serapheim was the leader of the Greek OrthodoxChurch from 1974—1988. He died in April, 1988, while still in office.
20. Ethnos, May 9, 1994. 21. For relations between the Church and the military junta, see Giorgos Karagiannis, Eklissia kai Kratos, and Giorgos Moustakis, / Genesi toy Christianofasismoy stin Ellada.
22. Antischolio, Srebrenica, 220.
23. Piraiki Eklisia, Apr., 1995, 42—43.
24. Antischolio, Srebrenica, 208.
25. Quoted in Laura Silber and Allan Little, Yugoslavia, 246.
26. Eleftherotypia, Jan. 18, 1995.
27. Apogevmatini, June 15, 1993; Ta Nea, June 15, 1993.
28. Quoted in Eleftherotypia, June 15, 1993.
29. Axis Mousionis, taped interview with author, Salonika, Apr. 9, 2001.
30. Quoted in Eleftherotypia, June 15, 1993.
31. Quoted in Apogevmatini, June 15, 1993.
32. Ethnos, May 15, 1993.
33. Eleftherotypia, Aug. 10, 1993.
34. Ibid., Mar. 9, 1994.
35. Ibid., Jan. 21, 1994.
36. Eleftherotypia, June 16, 1993.
37. For Milosevic’s comings and goings to Athens, see Sabrina P. Ramet “TheMacedonian Enigma,” in Beyond Yugoslavia, ed. Ramet and Adamovic.
38. Eleftherotypia, Dec. 18, 2000.
39. Quoted in the Wall Street Journal (European ed.), Aug. 9, 1996 (hereafter WSJE).
40. Antischolio, Srebrenica, 191—203.
41. Eleftherotypia, May 23, 1995.
42. Ibid., Dec. 8, 1993.
43. Antischolio, Srebrenica, 209.
44. Leonidas Chatziprodromidis, I Dolofonia tis Yougoslavias, 23.
45. Ibid.
46. Sasa Mirkovic, taped interview with author, Nov., 2000.
47. Quoted in Eleftherotypia, Sept. 21, 1995.
48. Quoted in Chatziprodromidis, I Dolofonia tis Yougoslavias, 281.
49. Mirkovic interview.
50. Quoted in Antischolio, Srebrenica, 203.
51. Ibid.
52. Quoted in Takis Michas, “Greece Keeps Dismissing Serb Atrocities,” WSJE, Aug. 22, 1995.
53. For anti-Turkish views in the Greek educational system, see Anna Fragoudaki et al., Ti ine I Patrida Mas? Ethnokentrismos stin Ekpaidevsi; in Greek political culture, seeHeraklides, I Ellada kai 0 “Ex anatolon Kindinos”; in the Greek media, see John Carr,“Manufacturing the Enemy: Nationalism and Turkophobia in the Greek Media as a Cultural and Economic Phenomenon” (master’s thesis, Leicester University, n.d.).
54. See also Mark Almond, Europe’s Backyard War.
55. Elefiherotypia, Mar. 17, 1991.
56. Quoted in ibid., Mar. 8, 1996.
57. Quoted in ibid., Dec. 16, 1994.
58. Quoted in ibid., Dec. 4, 1994.
59. Quoted in Antischolio, Srebrenica, 198.
60. Ibid.
61. Elefiherotypia, May 23, 1995.
62. Ibid., Mar. 3, 1995.
63. Ibid.
64. Takis Michas, “Greece Questions the War Crimes Tribunal,” WSJE, Aug. 9, 1996.
65. Adesmefios Tipos, May 6, 1995.
66. Elefiherotypia, May 27, 1995.
67. Michas, “Greece Keeps Dismissing Serb Atrocities.”
68. Elefiherotypia, Feb. 29, 1996.
69. I Thessalia, Feb. 21, 1993.
70. Ependitis, May 30, 1993.
71. Kathimerini, June 7.6, 1993.
72. 7 o Vima, Mar. 31, 1993.
73. 7i Afoj , June 17, 1993.
74. Elefiherotypia, Dec. 21, 1995.
75. WSJE, May 9, 1996.
76. Elefiherotypia, Jan. 20, 2001.
77. Alexis Heraklides, I Ellada kai 0 “Ex anatolon Kindinos, ” 78—79. See also MishaGlenny, The Fall of Yugoslavia, 165.
78. Elefiherotypia, July 14, 1995. Papoulias, a close collaborator of Andreas Papandreou,served as foreign minister in the PASOK governments in 1985—89 and again in 1993—96.
79. Quoted in ibid., Dec. 2, 1994.
80. Quoted in ibid., June 14, 1993.
81. Axis Mousionis, taped interview with author, Thessaloniki, May, 2001. Mousionissays that his change of heart took place during the summer of 1995 while he was in Bosnia:“I had firsthand reports about what happened in Gorazde, Tuzla, and above all Srbrenica. Ifelt that after that there was no longer any higher anti-imperialist ideal that could justifythose horrors.”
82. Quoted in Eleftherotypia, Dec. 9, 1996.
83. Liberation, Nov. 30, 1993.
84. See, for example, Eleftherotypia, May 8, 1998.
85. Mousionis interview.
86. Quoted in Michas, “Greece Keeps Dismissing Serb Atrocities.”
87. Quoted in Michas, “Greece Questions the War Crimes Tribunal.”
88. Ibid.
89. See, for example, Christos Rozakis’s “Ta Adiexoda Stereotipa tis Ellinikis ExoterikisPolitikis” in Se Anazitizi Exoterikis Politikis.
90. Takis Michas, “Another Blow to Peace Prospects in Cyprus,” WSJE, Jan. 8, 1997.

Tags: Serbian agression, Greece, Greek Volunteer Guard, Ελληνική Εθελοντική Φρουρά

If you like our work and would like to support it, please consider becoming a patron. Thank you!