Greek military junta of 1967–1974

Greek military junta of 1967–1974
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The Greek military junta of 1967–1974, alternatively "The Regime of the Colonels" (Greek: Το καθεστώς των Συνταγματαρχών, To kathestos ton Syntagmatarhon), or in Greece "The Junta", (English pronunciation: /ˈdʒʌntə/ or /ˈhʊntə/; Greek Χούντα, [ˈxuda]) and "The Seven Years" (Greek: Η Επταετία, I eptaetía) are terms used to refer to a series of right-wing military governments that ruled Greece from 1967 to 1974. Rule by the Greek military started in the morning of 21 April 1967, with a coup d'état led by a group of colonels, and ended in July 1974.



The 1967 coup and the following seven years of military rule were the culmination of 30 years of national division between the forces of the Left and the Right that can be traced to the time of the resistance against Axis occupation of Greece during World War II. After the liberation in 1944, Greece descended into a civil war, fought between the communist forces and the now returned government-in-exile.

American influence in Greece

The Phoenix rising from its flames and the silhouette of the soldier bearing a rifle with fixed bayonet was the emblem of the Junta. On the header the word Greece (Ελλας) and on the footer 21 April 1967, the date of the coup d'état, can be seen in Greek.

In 1947, the United States formulated the Truman Doctrine, and began to actively support a series of authoritarian governments in Greece, Turkey and Iran, in order to ensure that these states did not fall under Soviet influence.[1] With American and British aid, the civil war ended with the military defeat of the communists in 1949. The Communist Party of Greece (KKE) was outlawed and many Communists either fled the country or faced persecution. The CIA and the Greek military began to work closely, especially after Greece joined NATO in 1952.[citation needed] Greece was a vital link in the NATO defense arc which extended from the eastern border of Iran to the northern most point in Norway. Greece in particular was seen as being at risk, having experienced a Communist insurgency. In particular, the newly-founded Hellenic National Intelligence Service (KYP) and the LOK Special Forces (later actively involved in the 1967 coup) maintained a very close liaison with their American counterparts. In addition to preparing for a Soviet invasion, they agreed to guard against a left wing coup. The LOK in particular were integrated into the Gladio European stay-behind network.[2] Although there have been persistent rumors about an active support of the perpetrators of the coup d'état by the US government there is no evidence to support such claims.[3][4] It is however likely that the US military was informed of the coup a few days in advance by Greek liaison officers.[5]

The Apostasia and political instability

After many years of conservative rule, the election of centrist Georgios Papandreou, Sr. as Prime Minister was a sign of change. In a bid to gain more control over the country's government than what his limited constitutional powers allowed, the young and inexperienced King Constantine II clashed with liberal reformers, dismissing Papandreou in 1965, causing a constitutional crisis known as the Apostasia of 1965.

After making several attempts to form governments, relying on dissident Center Union and conservative MPs, Constantine II appointed an interim government under Ioannis Paraskevopoulos, and new elections were called for 28 May 1967. There were many indications that Papandreou's Center Union would emerge as the largest party, but would not be able to form a single-party government and would be forced into an alliance with the United Democratic Left, which was suspected by conservatives of being a proxy for the banned Communist Party of Greece. This possibility was used as a pretext for the coup.

A "Generals' Coup"

The junta principals in one of their earlier outings together as they appeared on Greek newspapers such as Vradini. Later these joint appearances would become much more rare and the military uniform would be discarded for civilian clothes, in an ultimately unsuccessful bid to look like, and become, mainstream politicians. Left to right: Pattakos, Papadopoulos and Makarezos

Greek historiography and the press have also hypothesized about a "Generals' Coup",[6] a coup that would have been deployed at the behest of the palace,[7] under the pretext of combatting communist subversion.[8] In the confusion of the first few hours it was actually thought by many outside observers that the King was behind the coup and many European newspapers carried headlines accusing Constantine of being the mastermind behind the events in Greece.[citation needed]

Before the elections that were scheduled for 28 May 1967, with expectations of a wide Centrist victory, a number of National Radical Union politicians feared that the policies of leftist members of the Center Union, such as Andreas Papandreou (the son of Georgios Papandreou, Sr.) and Spyros Katsotas, would lead to a constitutional crisis. One such politician, George Rallis, has recounted he had proposed that, in case of such an "anomaly", the King should declare martial law, as the monarchist constitution permitted him. According to Rallis, Constantine was receptive to the idea.[9]

According to US diplomat John Day, the Americans also worried that due to the old age of Georgios Papandreou, Andreas Papandreou would have a very powerful role in the next government. According to Robert Keely and John Owens, American diplomats attached to the US Embassy in Greece at the time, Constantine asked US Ambassador Philip Talbot what would be the attitude of the US government to an extra-parliamentary solution to this problem. To this the embassy responded negatively in principle, adding however that "US reaction to such move cannot be determined in advance but would depend on circumstances at time". To this day, Constantine denies this.[10]

According to then US Ambassador Philip Talbot, after this communication, Constantine met with the army generals, who promised him that they would not take any action before the coming elections. However the proclamations of Andreas Papandreou made them nervous, and they resolved to re-examine their decision after seeing the results of the elections.[10]

In 1966 Constantine II of Greece sent his envoy Demetrios Bitsios to Paris on mission to convince Constantine Karamanlis to return to Greece and resume a role in Greek politics. According to uncorroborated claims made by the former monarch, in 2006 and after the deaths of the two men involved, Karamanlis replied to Bitsios that he would only return if the King imposed martial law, as was his constitutional prerogative.[11]

US journalist Cyrus L. Sulzberger has separately claimed that Karamanlis flew to New York to lobby US support from Lauris Norstad for a coup d'état in Greece that would establish a strong conservative regime under himself; Sulzberger alleges that Norstad declined to involve himself in such affairs.[8] Sulzberger's account, which unlike that of the former King was delivered during the lifetime of those implicated (Karamanlis and Norstad), rested solely on the authority of his and Norstad's word. When, in 1997, the former King reiterated Sulzberger's allegations, Karamanlis stated that he "will not deal with the former king's statements because both their content and attitude are unworthy of comment".[12] The deposed King's adoption of Sulzberger's claims against Karamanlis was castigated by the left-leaning media, typically critical of Karamanlis, as "shameless" and "brazen".[12] It bears noting that, at the time, the former King referred exclusively to Sulzberger's account, to support the theory of a planned coup by Karamanlis, and made no mention of the alleged 1966 meeting with Bitsios, which he would refer to only after both participants had died and could not respond.

As it turned out, the constitutional crisis did not originate either from the political parties, or from the Palace, but from middle-rank army putschists.

The coup d'état of 21 April

The junta members.

On 21 April 1967, (just weeks before the scheduled elections), a group of right-wing army officers led by Brigadier Stylianos Pattakos and Colonels George Papadopoulos and Nikolaos Makarezos seized power in a coup d'etat.[13] The colonels were able to quickly seize power by using surprise and confusion. Pattakos was commander of the Armour Training Centre (Greek: Κέντρο Εκπαίδευσης Τεθωρακισμένων, ΚΕΤΘ), based in Athens. The coup leaders placed tanks in strategic positions in Athens, effectively gaining complete control of the city. At the same time, a large number of small mobile units were dispatched to arrest leading politicians and authority figures, as well as many ordinary citizens suspected of left-wing sympathies, according to lists prepared in advance. One of the first to be arrested was Lieutenant General Grigorios Spandidakis, Commander-in-Chief of the Greek Army.

The conspirators were known to Spandidakis. Indeed, he was instrumental in bringing some of them to Athens, to use in a coup he and other leading Army generals had been planning, in an attempt to prevent George Papandreou's victory in the upcoming election and the Communist takeover that would, supposedly, follow it. The colonels succeeded in persuading Spandidakis to join them and he issued orders activating an action plan (the "Prometheus" plan) that had been previously drafted as a response for a hypothetical Communist uprising (see Operation Gladio). Under the command of paratrooper Lieutenant Colonel Kostas Aslanides, the LOK (see above) took control of the Greek Defence Ministry while Brigadier General Stylianos Pattakos gained control over communication centers, the parliament, the royal palace, and according to detailed lists, arrested over 10,000 people.[14]

By the early morning hours the whole of Greece was in the hands of the colonels. All leading politicians, including acting Prime Minister Panagiotis Kanellopoulos, had been arrested and were held incommunicado by the conspirators. At 6 a.m. on the day of the coup Papadopoulos announced that eleven articles of the Greek constitution were suspended.[14]

One of the consequences of Papadopoulos' annulment of the eleven key articles of the Greek Constitution was that anyone could be arrested without warrant at any time and brought before a miltary court to be tried. Yannis Ladas the then director of ESA in an interview referring to the coup said: "Within twenty minutes every politician, every man, every anarchist who was listed could be rounded up... It was a simple, diabolical plan".[14]

Georgios Papandreou was arrested after a nightime raid at his villa in Kastri. Andreas Papandreou was arrested at around the same time after seven soldiers with fixed bayonets and one with a machine gun forcibly entered his home. Andreas Papandreou escaped to the roof of his house but surrendered after one of the soldiers held a gun to the head of his then 14-year old son George Papandreou.[14]

U.S. critics of the coup included then senator Lee Metcalf who criticised the Johson administration for providing aid to a "military regime of collaborators and Nazi sympathisers". Phillips Talbot, the US ambassador in Athens, disapproved of the military coup, complaining that it represented "A rape of democracy", to which Jack Maury, the CIA chief of station in Athens, answered, "How can you rape a whore?"[14] The Papadopoulos' junta attempted to re-engineer the Greek political landscape by coup.

The role of the King

King Constantine II surrounded by the junta Government at the swearing-in ceremony of the dictators.

When the tanks rolled on to Athens streets on 21 April, the legitimate National Radical Union government, of which Rallis was a member, asked King Constantine to immediately mobilise the state against the coup; he declined to do so, and swore in the dictators as the legitimate government of Greece, while asserting that he was "certain they had acted in order to save the country".[citation needed]

The three plot leaders visited Constantine in his residence in Tatoi, which they circled with tanks, effectively preventing any form of resistance. The King wrangled with the colonels and initially dismissed them, ordering them to return with Spandidakis. Later in the day he took it upon himself to go to the Ministry of National Defence, located north of Athens city centre, where all the coup leaders were gathered. The King had a discussion with Kanellopoulos, who was detained there, and with leading generals. This was a pointless exercise, since Kanellopoulos was a prisoner whilst the generals had no real power, as was evident from the shouting of lower and middle-ranking officers, refusing to obey orders and clamouring for a new government under Spandidakis.[citation needed]

The King finally relented and decided to co-operate, claiming to this day that he was isolated and did not know what else to do. He has since claimed that he was trying to gain time to organise a counter-coup and oust the Junta. He did organise such a counter-coup; however, the fact that the new government had a legal sanction, in that it had been appointed by the legitimate head of state, played an important role in the coup's success. The King was later to regret bitterly his decision. For many Greeks, it served to identify him indelibly with the coup and certainly played an important role in the final decision to abolish the monarchy, sanctioned by the 1974 referendum.

The only concession the King could achieve was to appoint a civilian as prime minister, rather than Spandidakis. Konstantinos Kollias, a former Attorney General of the Areios Pagos (supreme court), was chosen. He was a well-known royalist and had even been disciplined under the Papandreou government for meddling in the investigation on the murder of MP Gregoris Lambrakis. Kollias was little more than a figurehead and real power rested with the army, and especially Papadopoulos, who emerged as the coup's strong man and became Minister to the Presidency of the Government. Other coup members occupied key posts.

Up until then constitutional legitimacy had been preserved, since under the then Greek Constitution the King could appoint whoever he wanted as prime minister, as long as Parliament endorsed the appointment with a vote of confidence or a general election was called. It was this government, sworn-in during the early evening hours of 21 April, that formalised the coup. It adopted a "Constituent Act", an amendment tantamount to a revolution, canceling the elections and effectively abolishing the constitution, which would be replaced later. In the meantime, the government was to rule by decree. Since traditionally such Constituent Acts did not need to be signed by the Crown, the King never signed it, permitting him to claim, years later, that he had never signed any document instituting the junta. Critics claim that Constantine II did nothing to prevent the government (and especially his chosen prime minister Kollias) from legally instituting the authoritarian government to come. This same government formally published and enforced a decree, already proclaimed on radio as the coup was in progress, instituting military law. Constantine claimed he never signed that decree either.

The King's counter-coup

From the outset, the relationship between King Constantine II and the Colonels was an uneasy one. The colonels were not willing to share power with anyone, whereas the young King, like his father before him, was used to playing an active role in politics and would never consent to being a mere figurehead, especially in a military administration. Although the colonels' strong anti-communist, pro-NATO and pro-Western views appealed to the United States, fearful of domestic and international public opinion, President of the United States Lyndon B. Johnson told Constantine, in a visit to Washington, D.C. in early autumn of 1967, that it would be best to replace that government with another one.[citation needed] Constantine took that as an encouragement to organize a counter-coup, although no direct help or involvement of the US was forthcoming.

The King finally decided to launch his counter-coup on 13 December 1967. Since Athens was effectively in the hands of the junta militarily, Constantine decided to fly to the small northern city of Kavala. There he hoped to be among troops loyal only to him. The vague plan he and his advisors had conceived was to form a unit that would advance on and take Thessaloniki. Constantine planned to install an alternative administration there. International recognition, which he believed to be forthcoming, as well as internal pressure from the fact that Greece would have been split in two governments would, the King hoped, force the junta to resign, leaving the field clear for him to return triumphant to Athens.

In the early morning hours of 13 December, the King boarded the royal plane, together with Queen Anne-Marie of Greece, their two baby children Princess Alexia of Greece and Denmark and Pavlos, Crown Prince of Greece, his mother Frederika of Hanover and his sister, Princess Irene of Greece and Denmark. Constantine also took with him Prime Minister Kollias. At first, things seemed to be going according to plan. Constantine was well received in Kavala which, militarily, was under the command of a general loyal to him. The Air Force and Navy, both strongly royalist and not involved in the 1967 coup, immediately declared for him and mobilised. Another of Constantine's generals effectively cut all communication between Athens and northern Greece.

However, the King's plans were overly bureaucratic, naïvely supposing that orders from a commanding general would automatically be obeyed. Further, the King was obsessive about avoiding "bloodshed", even where the junta would be the attacker. Instead of attempting to drum up the widest popular support, hoping for spontaneous pro-democracy risings in most towns, the King preferred to let his generals put together the necessary force for advancing on Thessaloniki in strict compliance with military bureaucracy.[citation needed] The King made no attempt to contact politicians, even local ones, and even took care to include in his proclamation a paragraph condemning communism, lest anyone should get the wrong idea.

In the circumstances, rather than the King managing to put together a force and advancing on Thessaloniki, middle-ranking pro-junta officers neutralised and arrested his royalist generals and took command of their units, which subsequently put together a force to advance on Kavala to arrest the King. The junta, not at all shaken by the loss of their figurehead premier, ridiculed the King by announcing that he was hiding "from village to village". Realising that the counter coup had failed, Constantine fled Greece on board the royal plane, taking his family and helpless Prime Minister with him. They landed in Rome early in the morning of 14 December. Constantine remained in exile all through the rest of military rule (although nominally he continued as King until 1 June 1973) and was never to return to Greece as King.

The Regency

The flight of the King and Prime Minister to Italy left Greece with no legal government or head of state. This did not concern the military junta. Instead the Revolutionary Council, composed of Pattakos, Papadopoulos and Makarezos, issued a notice in the Government Gazette appointing another member to the military administration, Major General Georgios Zoitakis, as Regent. Zoitakis then appointed Papadopoulos Prime Minister. This became the only government of Greece after the failure of the King's attempted coup, as the King was unwilling to set up an alternative administration in exile. The Regent's position was later confirmed under the 1968 Constitution, although the exiled King never officially recognised, or acknowledged, the Regency.

In a legally controversial move, even under the junta's own Constitution, the Cabinet voted on 21 March 1972 to oust Zoitakis and replace him with Papadopoulos, thus combining the offices of Regent and Prime Minister. It was thought Zoitakis was problematic and interfered too much with the military. The King's portrait remained on coins, in public buildings, etc., but slowly, the military was chipping away at the institution of the monarchy: the royal family's tax immunity was abolished, the complex network of royally managed charities was brought under direct state control, the royal arms were removed from coins, the Navy and Air Force were no longer "Royal" and the newspapers were usually banned from publishing the King's photo or any interviews.

During this period, resistance against the colonels' rule became better organized among exiles in Europe and the United States. In addition to the expected opposition from the left, the colonels found themselves under attack by constituencies that had traditionally supported past right-wing regimes: pro-monarchists supporting Constantine; businessmen concerned over international isolation; the middle class facing an economic downturn after 1971.[citation needed] There was also considerable political infighting within the junta. Still, up until 1973 the junta appeared in firm control of Greece, and not likely to be ousted by violent means.

Characteristics of the Junta


The colonels preferred to call the coup d'état of 21 April a "revolution to save the nation" ("Ethnosotirios Epanastasis"). Their official justification for the coup was that a "communist conspiracy" had infiltrated the bureaucracy, academia, the press, and even the military, to such an extent that drastic action was needed to protect the country from communist takeover. Thus, the defining characteristic of the Junta was its staunch anti-Communism. They used the term anarcho-communist (Greek: αναρχοκομμουνιστές, anarchokommounistes) to describe all leftists. In a similar vein the junta attempted to steer Greek public opinion not only by propaganda but also by inventing new words and slogans, such as old-partyism (palaiokommatismos) to discredit parliamentary democracy, or Greece for Christian Greeks (Ellas Ellinon Christianon) to underscore its ideology.

The junta's main ideological spokesmen included Georgios Georgalas and journalist Savvas Konstantopoulos, both former Marxists. Its propaganda often relied on fabricated evidence and fictional enemies of the state.[citation needed] Atheism and pop culture, such as rock music and the hippies, were also seen as parts of this conspiracy. Nationalism and Christianity were widely promoted.

Civil rights

As soon as the coup d'état was announced over the radio on Friday, 21 April 1967, martial music was continuously broadcast over the airwaves.[15] This was interrupted from time to time with announcements of the junta issuing orders that always started with the introduction "We decide and we order" (Greek: Αποφασίζομεν και διατάσσομεν). Long standing political freedoms and civil liberties, that had been taken for granted and enjoyed by the Greek people for decades, were instantly suppressed. Article 14 of the Greek Constitution which protected freedom of thought and freedom of the press was immediately suspended.[16][17] Military courts were established, and political parties were dissolved. Legislation that took decades to fine tune and multiple parliaments to enact was thus erased in a matter of days. The rapid devolution of Greek democracy had begun.

In fact the junta crackdown was so fast that by September 1967, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and the Netherlands went before the European Commission of Human Rights to accuse Greece of violating most of the Human Rights protected by the European Convention on Human Rights.[18] Following the 21 April coup, 6,188 suspected communists and political opponents were imprisoned or exiled to remote Greek islands.[19]

Under the junta torture was a deliberate practice carried out both by the Security Police and the Greek Military Police, as portrayed in the film Your Neighbor's Son,[20][21] with an estimated 3,500 people detained in torture centres run by ESA.[18][19]

Examples of the types of torture commonly used include (amongst others):[22]

  • Beating the soles of people's feet with sticks and pieces of metal pipe.
  • Sexual torture such as shoving objects into people's vagina/anus and twisting them violently, or hoses shoved into the anus and forcing water in at high pressure.
  • Choking people and shoving rags soaked in urine and excrement down their throats
  • Ripping out hair from the head and pubic regions.
  • Jumping on people's stomachs
  • Pulling out toenails and fingernails

According to a human rights report by Amnesty International, in the first month of the 21 April coup an estimated 8,000 people were arrested.[18][19] James Becket,[23] an American attorney and author of Barbarism in Greece,[24][25] was sent to Greece by Amnesty International and wrote in December 1969 that "a conservative estimate would place at not less than two thousand" the number of people tortured.[18]

The citizens' right of assembly was revoked and no political demonstrations were allowed. Surveillance on citizens was a fact of life, even during permitted social activities. That had a continuously chilling effect on the population who realised that, even though they were allowed certain social activities, they could not overstep the boundaries and delve into or discuss forbidden subjects. This realisation including the absence of any civil rights as well as maltreatment during police arrest, ranging from threats to beatings or worse, made life under the junta a difficult proposition for many ordinary citizens.

Following the junta's logic, one was allowed to participate in a rock concert, as an example, but if any misbehaviour occurred during that activity that was not up to junta's standards, the resulting arrest, coupled with the complete absence of any civil rights, could easily lead to beatings and labelling of the individual as an anarchist, communist, a combination of these terms, or worse. The absence of a valid code of jurisprudence led to the unequal application of the law among the citizens and to rampant favouritism and nepotism. Absence of elected representation meant that the citizens' stark and only choice was to submit to these arbitrary measures exactly as dictated by the junta. The country had become a true police state.[26]

Complete lack of press freedom coupled with nonexistant civil rights meant that continuous cases of civil rights abuses could neither be reported nor investigated by an independent press or any other reputable authority. This led to a psychology of fear among the citizens during the Papadopoulos dictatorship, which became worse under Ioannides.

External relations

The military government was given support by the United States as a Cold War ally, due to its proximity to the Eastern European Soviet bloc, and the fact that the previous Truman administration had given the country millions of dollars in economic aid to discourage Communism. US support for the junta, which was violently anti-communist, is claimed to be the cause of rising anti-Americanism in Greece during and following the junta's undemocratic rule.[27]

Greece's allies in Western Europe were split in their attitudes toward the Junta. The Scandinavian countries as well as the Netherlands took a very hostile stance towards the Junta and filed a complaint before the Human Rights Commission of the Council of Europe in September 1967. Greece however opted for leaving the Council of Europe voluntarily in December 1969 before a verdict was handed down.

Countries such as the United Kingdom and the Federal Republic of Germany on the other hand were voicing criticism about Greece's human rights record but supported the country's continued membership in the Council of Europe and NATO because of the country's strategic value for the western alliance.

Sociocultural policies

To gain support for his rule, Papadopoulos projected an image that appealed to some key segments of Greek society. The son of a poor but educated rural family, he was educated at the prestigious Hellenic Military Academy. Papadopoulos allowed substantial social and cultural freedoms to all social classes, but political oppression and censorship were at times heavy handed, especially in areas deemed sensitive by the junta, such as political activities, and politically related art, literature, film and music. Kostas Gavras's film Z and Mikis Theodorakis's music, among others, were never officially allowed even during the most relaxed times of the dictatorship, and an index of prohibited songs, literature and art was kept.

Western music and film

Remarkably, after some initial hesitation and as long as they were not deemed to be politically damaging to the junta, junta censors allowed wide access to Western music and films. Even the then racy, West German film Helga (German: Helga. Vom Werden des menschlichen Lebens, Greek: Helga, η ιστορία μίας γυναίκας), a 1967 sex education documentary featuring a live birth scene, had no trouble making its debut in Greece just like in any other Western country.[28] Moreover, the film was only restricted for those under 13 years of age. In 1971 Robert Hartford-Davis was allowed by the junta to film the classic horror film Incense for the Damned, starring Peter Cushing and Patrick Macnee and suitably featuring Chryseis (Χρυσηίς), a beguiling Greek siren with vampire tendencies, on the Greek island of Hydra.[29][30][31] In 1970 the film Woodstock was shown all over Greece, with reports of arrests and disturbances especially in Athens as many youths flocked to see the film and filled theatres to capacity, while many others were left outside.[32][33]

Meanwhile at Matala, Crete, a hippie colony which had been living in the caves since the 1960s, was never disturbed. Singer songwriter Joni Mitchell was inspired to write the song "Carey" after staying in the Matala caves with the hippie community in 1971. Hippie colonies also existed in other popular tourist spots such as "Paradise Beach" in Mykonos.[34]

Greek rock

Western music broadcasts were limited from the airwaves in favour of martial music, but this was eventually relaxed. In addition, pop/rock music programmes such as the one hosted by famous Greek music/radio/television personality and promoter Nico Mastorakis were very popular throughout the dictatorship years both on radio and television.[35] Most Western record sales were similarly not restricted. In fact, even rock concerts and tours were allowed such as by the then popular rock groups Socrates Drank the Conium and Nostradamos.[36][37][38][39] Another pop group "Poll" was a pioneer of Greek pop music in the late 1960s.[40] Its lead singer and composer was Robert Williams, who was later joined, in 1971, by Kostas Tournas.[41][42] Poll enjoyed a number of nationwide hits, such as "Anthrope Agapa (Humankind Love One Another)", an anti-war song, composed by Tournas and "Ela Ilie Mou (Come, My Sun)",[43] composed by Tournas, Williams),[44][45] Tournas later pursued a solo career and in 1972 produced the progressive psychedelic hit solo album Aperanta Chorafia (Greek: Απέραντα Χωράφια, Infinite Fields).[46] He wrote and arranged the album using an orchestra and a rock group ("Ruth") combination.[46][47] In 1973 Kostas Tournas created the album Astroneira (Stardreams) influenced by David Bowie's Ziggy Stardust.[48][49]

While the lyrics of "Poll" were composed exclusively in Greek, the band's name was an English word rendered in Greek characters, Πολλ. The dictionary definition of poll, a sampling or collection of opinions on a subject or the voting at an election, apparently did not register with the Greek military junta censors.

Songwriter and troubadour Dionysis Savvopoulos, who was initially imprisoned by the regime, nevertheless rose to great popularity and produced a number of influential and highly politically allegorical, especially against the junta, albums during the period, including To Perivoli tou Trellou (Greek: Το Περιβόλι του Τρελλού, The Madman's Orchard), Ballos (Greek: Μπάλλος, Name of Greek folk dance) and Vromiko Psomi (Greek: Βρώμικο Ψωμί, Dirty Bread).[33]


Concurrently, tourism was actively encouraged by Papadopoulos' government and, funding scandals notwithstanding, the tourist sector saw great development. With tourism came the nightlife. However, under Papadopoulos, in the absence of any civil rights these sociocultural freedoms existed in a legal vacuum that meant they were not guaranteed, but rather dispensed at the whim of the junta. In addition any transgressing into political matters during social or cultural activities usually meant arrest and punishment. Although discos and nightclubs were, initially, subjected to a curfew, partially due to an energy crisis, this was eventually extended from 1.00 a.m. to 3:00 a.m. as the energy crisis eased.[34] These freedoms were later reversed by Dimitrios Ioannides after his coup.


The farmers were Papadopoulos' natural constituency and were more likely to support him, seeing him, because of his rural roots, as one of their own. He cultivated this relationship by appealing to them, calling them the backbone of the people (Greek: η ραχοκοκαλιά του λαού) and cancelling all agricultural loans.[50] By further insisting on promoting, but not really enforcing for fear of middle-class backlash, religion and patriotism, he further appealed to the simpler ideals of rural Greece and strengthened his image as people's champion among farmers, who tended to ridicule the middle class. Furthermore, the regime promoted a policy of economic development in rural areas, which were mostly neglected by the previous governments, that had focused largely on urban industrial development.

Urban classes

Papadopoulos was less likely to appeal to the largely civilian and city-oriented middle class, since he was a military man from a rural background. In addition, he had promised from the beginning that the dictatorship would not be permanent, and that when political order was established democratic rule would return.[51] On top of that, his promotion of tourism and other beneficial economic measures and the fact that, with the notable exceptions of political freedoms and press censorship, he did not otherwise substantially restrict the middle class, had the effect of assisting the junta in establishing its control over the country by gaining, at least initially, the reluctant acquiescence of some key segments of the population.

Economic policies

The 1967–1973 period was marked by high rates of economic growth coupled with low inflation and low unemployment. GDP growth was driven by investment in the tourism industry, loose emigration policies, public spending, and pro-business incentives that fostered both domestic and foreign capital spending. Several international companies invested in Greece at the time, including the Coca-Cola Corporation. Economic growth started losing steam by 1972.[51] In addition, large scale construction of hydroelectric dam projects, such as in Aliakmon, Kastrakion, Polyphytos, the expansion of Thermoelectric generation units and other significant infrastructure development, took place. The junta used to proudly announce these projects with the slogan: "Greece is a construction zone" (Η Ελλάς είναι ένα εργοτάξιον). The always smiling Stylianos Pattakos, also known as the first trowel of Greece, (Το πρώτο μυστρί της Ελλάδας), since he frequently appeared at project inaugurations with a trowel in hand, starred in many of the Epikaira propaganda documentaries that were screened before feature film presentation in Greek cinemas.[52]

Financial scandals

Cases of non-transparent public deals and corruption allegedly occurred at the time, given the lack of democratic checks and balances and the absence of a free press. One such event is associated with the regime's tourism minister, Ioannis Ladas (Greek: Ιωάννης Λαδάς). During his administration, several low-interest loans, amortized over a twenty-year period, were issued for tourist development. This fostered the erection of a multitude of hotels, sometimes in non-tourist areas, and with no underlying business rationale. Several such hotels were abandoned unfinished as soon as the loans were secured, and their remains still dot the Greek countryside. These questionable loans are referred to as Thalassodaneia (Greek: θαλασσοδάνεια), or "loans of the sea", to indicate the loose terms under which they were granted.[53]

Another contested policy of the regime was the writing-off of agricultural loans, up to a value of 100,000 drachmas, to farmers. This has been attributed to an attempt by Papadopoulos to gain public support for his regime.

The Italian connection

At the time, the Italian far right was very impressed with the methods of Papadopoulos and his junta. In April 1968 Papadopoulos invited fifty Italian members of the far right including Stefano Delle Chiaie on a Greek tour with the purpose of demonstrating to the Italians the methods of the junta. The Italians were sufficiently impressed that upon return to their country, the operatives of the Italian far right escalated the political violence in their country to a new level embarking on a terror campaign of bombings and other violence which killed and injured hundreds. Afterwards, the right-wing instigators of this violence blamed the communists. The Greek junta was so impressed with the manner their Italian counterparts were paving the way toward an Italian coup d'état that on 15 May 1969 Papadopoulos sent them a congratulatory message stating that "His Excellency the Prime Minister notes that the efforts that have been undertaken by the Greek National government in Italy for some time start to have some impact".[14]

Anti-Junta movement

Alexandros Panagoulis on trial in front of the junta justice system

The democratic elements of the Greek society were opposed to the junta from the start. In 1968 many militant groups promoting democratic rule were formed, both in exile and in Greece. These included, among others, Panhellenic Liberation Movement, Democratic Defense, the Socialist Democratic Union, as well as groups from the entire left wing of the Greek political spectrum, including the Communist Party of Greece which had been outlawed even before the junta. The first armed action against the junta was the failed assassination attempt against George Papadopoulos by Alexandros Panagoulis, on 13 August 1968.

Assassination attempt by Panagoulis

The assassination attempt took place in the morning of 13 August, when Papadopoulos went from his summer residence in Lagonisi to Athens, escorted by his personal security motorcycles and cars. Alexandros Panagoulis ignited a bomb at a point of the coastal road where the limousine carrying Papadopoulos would have to slow down, but the bomb failed to harm Papadopoulos. Panagoulis was captured a few hours later in a nearby sea cave, as the boat that would let him escape the scene of the attack had not shown up.

Panagoulis was transferred to the Greek Military Police (EAT-ESA) offices, where he was questioned, beaten and tortured (see the proceedings of Theofiloyiannakos's trial). On 17 November 1968 he was sentenced to death, and remained in prison for five years. After the restoration of democracy, Panagoulis was elected a Member of Parliament. Panagoulis is regarded as an emblematic figure for the struggle to restore democracy.

Broadening of the movement

The funeral of George Papandreou, Sr. on 3 November 1968 spontaneously turned into a massive demonstration against the junta. Thousands of Athenians disobeyed the military's orders and followed the casket to the cemetery. The government reacted by arresting 41 people.

On 28 March 1969, after two years of widespread censorship, political detentions and torture, Giorgos Seferis, recipient of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1963, took a stand against the junta. He made a statement on the BBC World Service,[54] with copies simultaneously distributed to every newspaper in Athens. Attacking the colonels, he passionately demanded that "This anomaly must end". Seferis did not live to see the end of the junta. His funeral, though, on September 20, 1972, turned into a massive demonstration against the military government.

Also in 1969, Costa-Gavras released the film Z, based on a book by celebrated left-wing writer Vassilis Vassilikos. The film, banned in Greece, presented a lightly fictionalized account of the events surrounding the assassination of United Democratic Left MP Gregoris Lambrakis in 1963. The film captured the sense of outrage about the junta. The soundtrack of the film was written by Mikis Theodorakis, who was imprisoned by the junta and later went into exile, and the music was smuggled into the country to be added to the other inspirational, underground Theodorakis tracks.

A lesser known Danish film, in Greek, Your Neighbor's Son, detailed the subordination and training of simple youths to become torturers for the junta.

International protest

The junta exiled thousands on the grounds that they were communists and/or "enemies of the country". Most of them were subjected to internal exile on Greek deserted islands, such as Makronisos, Gyaros, Gioura, or inhabited islands such as Leros, Agios Eustratios or Trikeri. The most famous were in external exile, most of whom were substantially involved in the resistance, organising protests in European capital cities, or helping and hiding refugees from Greece. These included: Melina Mercouri, actor, singer (and, after 1981 Minister for Culture); Mikis Theodorakis, composer of resistance songs; Costas Simitis, (prime minister from 1996 to 2004); Andreas Papandreou, (prime minister from 1981 to 1989 and again from 1993 to 1996); and Lady Amalia Fleming, (wife of Sir Alexander Fleming, philanthropist, political activist). Some chose exile, unable to stand life under the junta. For example Melina Mercouri was allowed to enter Greece, but stayed away on her own accord. Also in the early hours of 19 September 1970 in Matteotti square in Genoa, Geology student Kostas Georgakis set himself ablaze in protest against the dictatorship of George Papadopoulos. The junta delayed the arrival of his remains to Corfu for four months, fearing public reaction and protests. At the time his death caused a sensation in Greece and abroad as it was the first tangible manifestation of the depth of resistance against the junta. He is the only known anti-junta resistance activist to have sacrificed himself and he is considered the precursor of later student protest, such as the Athens Polytechnic uprising. The Municipality of Corfu has dedicated a memorial in his honour near his home in Corfu city.

The German writer, investigative reporter and journalist Günter Wallraff traveled to Greece in May 1974. While in Syntagma Square, he protested against human right violations. He was arrested and tortured by the police, as he did not carry, on purpose, any papers on him that could identify him as a foreigner. After his identity was revealed, Wallraff was convicted and sentenced to 14 months in jail. He was released in August, after the end of the dictatorship.[55]

The Velos mutiny

VELOS D16 (Greek: ΒΕΛΟΣ, "ARROW"), now a museum in the Gulf of Faliron in Athens

In an anti-junta protest, on 23 May 1973, HNS Velos, under the command of Commander Nicholaos Pappas, refused to return to Greece after participating in a NATO exercise and remained anchored at Fiumicino, Italy. During a patrol with other NATO vessels between continental Italy and Sardinia, the captain and the officers heard over the radio that a number of fellow naval officers had been arrested in Greece. Cdr Pappas was involved in a group of democratic officers, who remained loyal to their oath to obey the Constitution, which was planning to act against the junta. Evangelos Averoff also participated in the Velos mutiny, for which he was later arrested as an "instigator".[citation needed]

Pappas believed that since his fellow anti-junta officers had been arrested, there was no more hope for a movement inside Greece. He therefore decided to act alone in order to motivate global public opinion. He mustered all the crew to the stern and announced his decision, which was received with enthusiasm by the crew.[citation needed] Pappas signalled his intentions to the squadron commander and NATO headquarters, quoting the preamble of the North Atlantic Treaty, which declares that "all governments ... are determined to safeguard the freedom, common heritage and civilisation of their peoples, founded on the principles of democracy, individual liberty and the rule of law", and, leaving formation, sailed for Rome. There, anchored about 3.5 nautical miles (6 km) away from the coast of Fiumicino, three ensigns sailed ashore with a whaleboat, went to Fiumicino Airport and telephoned the international press agencies, notifying them of the situation in Greece, the presence of the destroyer, and that the captain would hold a press conference the next day.[citation needed]

This action increased international interest in the situation in Greece. The captain, six officers, and twenty five petty officers requested and remained abroad as political refugees. Indeed, the whole crew wished to follow their captain but were advised by its officers to remain onboard and return to Greece to inform families and friends about what happened. Velos returned to Greece after a month with a replacement crew. After the fall of junta all officers and petty officers returned to the Navy.[citation needed]


The collapse of the junta both ideologically and politically was triggered by a series of events which unfolded soon after Papadopoulos' attempt at liberalisation, with ideological collapse preceding its eventual political collapse. During and following this ill-fated process the internal political strains of the junta came to the fore and pitted the junta factions against each other, thus destroying the seemingly monolithic cohesion of the dictatorship. This had the effect of seriously weakening the coherence of the political message and, consequently, the credibility of the regime, a fatal blow from which, as later events would show, it never recovered. At the same time, during Papadopoulos' attempt at liberalisation, some of the junta constraints were removed from the body politic of Greece and that led to demands for more freedoms, and political unrest, in a society well used to democratic action prior to the dictatorship.

Normalization and attempts at liberalization

Papadopoulos had indicated as early as 1968 that he was eager for a reform process and even tried to contact Markezinis at the time. He had declared at the time that he did not want the "Revolution", (junta speak for the "dictatorship"), to become a "regime". He then repeatedly attempted to initiate reforms in 1969 and 1970, only to be thwarted by the hardliners including Ioannidis. In fact subsequent to his 1970 failed attempt at reform, he threatened to resign and was dissuaded only after the hardliners renewed their personal allegiance to him.[51]

On 10 April 1970 Papadopoulos announced the formation of the Simvouleftiki Epitropi (Συμβουλευτική Επιτροπή) translated as the Advisory Council (Committee) otherwise known as Papadopoulos' (pseudo) Parliament.[56][57] Composed of members elected through an electoral type process but limited to ethnikofrones only, it was bicameral, composed of the Central Advisory Council and the Provincial Advisory Council. The Central Council met in Athens in the Parliament Building. Both councils had the purpose to advise the dictator. At the time of the announcement of the formation of the council, Papadopoulos explained that he wanted to avoid using the term "Vouli" (Parliament) for the Committee because it sounded bad.[57] The council was dissolved just prior to Papadopoulos' failed attempt to liberalise his regime with Markezinis.As internal dissatisfaction grew in the early 1970s, and especially after an abortive coup by the Navy in early 1973,[51] Papadopoulos attempted to legitimize the regime by beginning a gradual "democratization" (See also the article on Metapolitefsi). On 1 June 1973, he abolished the monarchy and declared himself President of the Republic after a controversial referendum, the results of which were not recognised by the political parties. He furthermore sought the support of the old political establishment, but secured only the cooperation of Spiros Markezinis, who became Prime Minister. Concurrently, many restrictions were lifted, and the army's role significantly reduced. Papadopoulos intended to establish a presidential republic, with extensive powers vested in the office of President, which he held. The decision to return to political rule and the restriction of their role was resented by many of the regime's supporters in the Army, whose dissatisfaction with Papadopoulos would become evident a few months later.

The uprising at the Polytechnic

Papadopoulos' heavy handed attempt at liberalisation did not find favour among many in Greece. The stilted democratisation process he proposed was constrained by multiple factors. His inexperience at carrying out an unprecedented political experiment of democratisation was burdened by his tendency to concentrate as much power in his hands as possible, a weakness he exhibited during the dictatorship years when he would sometimes hold multiple high echelon government portfolios. This antagonised many but especially the intelligentsia whose primary exponents were the students. The students at the Law School in Athens, for example, demonstrated multiple times against the dictatorship prior to the events at the Polytechneion.

The tradition of student protest was always strong in Greece, even before the dictatorship. Papadopoulos tried hard to suppress and discredit the student movement during his tenure at the helm of the junta. But the liberalisation process he undertook allowed the students to organise more freely and this gave the opportunity to the students at the Athens Polytechnic to organise a demonstration that grew increasingly larger and more effective. The political momentum was on the side of the students. Sensing this the Papadopoulos junta panicked and reacted violently.

On the early hours of Saturday, 17 November 1973 Papadopoulos sent the army to suppress the student strike and sit-in of the "Free Besieged" (Ελεύθεροι Πολιορκημένοι), as the students called themselves, at the National Technical University of Athens which had commenced on November 14. Shortly after 03:00 am and under almost complete cover of darkness, an AMX 30 tank crashed through the rail gate of the Athens Polytechnic with subsequent loss of life. The army also occupied Syntagma Square and for at least that day. Even the sidewalk cafes were closed.

Ioannidis' involvement in inciting unit commanders of the security forces to commit criminal acts during the Athens Polytechnic uprising, so that he could facilitate his upcoming coup, was noted in the indictment presented to the court by the prosecutor during the junta trials and in his subsequent conviction in the Polytechneion trial where he was found to have been morally responsible for the events.[58][59]

The Ioannidis Regime

The uprising triggered a series of events that put an abrupt end to Papadopoulos' attempts at "liberalisation".

Taxiarkhos Dimitrios Ioannidis, a disgruntled junta hardliner, used the uprising as a pretext to reestablish public order, and staged a counter-coup that overthrew Georgios Papadopoulos and Spiros Markezinis on 25 November. Military law was reinstated, and the new Junta appointed General Phaedon Gizikis as President and economist Adamantios Androutsopoulos as Prime Minister, although Ioannides remained the behind-the-scenes strongman.

Ioannidis's heavy-handed and opportunistic intervention had the effect of destroying the myth that the junta was an idealistic group of army officers with exactly the same ideals who came to save Greece by using their collective wisdom. The main tenet of the junta ideology (and mythology) was gone and so was the collective. By default, he remained the only man at the top after toppling the other three principals of the junta. Characteristically, he cited ideological reasons for ousting the Papadopoulos faction, accusing them with straying from the principles of the Revolution, especially of being corrupt and misusing their privileges as army officers for financial gains.

Papadopoulos and his junta always claimed that the 21 April 1967 "revolution" saved Greece from the old party system. Now Ioannidis was, in effect, claiming that his coup saved the revolution from the Papadopoulos faction. The dysfunction as well as the ideological fragmentation and fractionalisation of the junta was finally out in the open. Ioannidis, however, did not make these accusations personally as he always tried to avoid unnecessary publicity. The radio broadcasts, following the now familiar coup in progress scenario featuring martial music interspersed with military orders and curfew announcements, kept repeating that the army was taking back the reins of power in order to save the principles of the revolution and that the overthrow of the Papadopoulos-Markezinis government was supported by the army, navy and air force.[60]

At the same time they announced that the new coup was a "continuation of the revolution of 1967" and accused Papadopoulos with "straying from the ideals of the 1967 revolution" and "pushing the country towards parliamentary rule too quickly".[60]

Previous to seizing power, Ioannidis preferred to work in the background and he never held any formal office in the junta. Now he was the de facto leader of a puppet regime composed by members some of whom were rounded up by ESA soldiers in roving jeeps to serve and others that were simply chosen by mistake.[61][62] The Ioannides method of forming a government dealt yet another blow to the rapidly diminishing credibility of the regime both at home and abroad.

The new junta, despite its rather inauspicious origins, pursued an aggressive internal crackdown and an expansionist foreign policy.

Sponsored by Ioannidis, on 15 July 1974 the EOKA-B organisation took power on the island of Cyprus by a military coup, in which Archbishop Makarios III, the Cypriot president, was overthrown. Turkey replied to this intervention by invading Cyprus and occupying, after heavy fighting with the Cypriot and Greek ELDYK Forces (Greek: ΕΛΔΥΚ, Ελληνική Δύναμη Κύπρου, Greek Force for Cyprus), the northern part of the island. There was a well-founded fear that an all out war with Turkey was imminent.

The fall of the Junta and the restoration of democracy

The Cyprus fiasco led to senior Greek military officers withdrawing their support for Junta strongman Brigadier Dimitrios Ioannides. Junta-appointed President Phaedon Gizikis called a meeting of old guard politicians, including Panagiotis Kanellopoulos, Spiros Markezinis, Stephanos Stephanopoulos, Evangelos Averoff, and others.

The agenda was to appoint a national unity government that would lead the country to elections. Although former Prime Minister Panagiotis Kanellopoulos was originally backed, on 23 July, Gizikis finally invited former Prime Minister Constantine Karamanlis, who had resided in Paris since 1963, to assume the role.[63] Karamanlis returned to Athens on a French Presidency Lear Jet made available to him by President Valéry Giscard d'Estaing, a close personal friend, and was sworn-in as Prime Minister under President Phaedon Gizikis. Karamanlis' new party, New Democracy, won the November 1974 general election, and he remained prime minister.

Parliamentary democracy was thus restored, and the Greek legislative elections of 1974 were the first free elections held in a decade.

While the physical collapse of the junta as a government was immediately caused by the Cyprus debacle, its ideological collapse was triggered by the 1973 Athens Polytechnic uprising. The uprising at the Polytechneion was the event that discredited the military government most and acted as a key catalyst for its eventual demise by exposing the internal contradictions and stresses of the regime thus destroying the myth of the political cohesion of the junta and, therefore, irreparably damaging the political credibility of the "Ethnosotirios Epanastasis" and its message.

The trials of the junta

The Junta on trial. Front row (from left): Papadopoulos, Makarezos, Pattakos. Ioannides can be seen on the second row, just behind Pattakos

In January 1975 the junta members were formally arrested and in early August of the same year the government of Konstantinos Karamanlis brought charges of high treason and insurrection against Georgios Papadopoulos and nineteen other co-conspirators of the military junta.[64] The mass trial was staged at the Korydallos Prison. The trial was described as "Greece's Nuremberg".[64] One thousand soldiers armed with submachine guns provided security.[64] The roads leading to the jail were patrolled by tanks.[64] Papadopoulos, Pattakos, Makarezos and Ioannides were sentenced to death for high treason.[65] These sentences were later commuted to life imprisonment by the Karamanlis government. A plan to grant amnesty to the junta principals by the Konstantinos Mitsotakis government in 1990 was cancelled after protests from conservatives, socialists and communists.[66] Papadopoulos died in hospital in 1999 after being transferred from Korydallos while Ioannides remained incarcerated until his death in 2010. This trial was followed by a second trial which centered on the events of the Athens Polytechnic uprising and a third called "The trial of the torturers".

Legacy and Greek public opinion

The historical repercussions of the junta were profound and are still felt to this day in Greece. Internally the absence of civil rights and the oppression that followed created a sense of fear and persecution among many in the population creating trauma and division that persisted long after the fall of the junta. The Cyprus debacle created a tragedy that is still unfolding.[67][68][69][70] While the Cyprus fiasco was due to the actions of Ioannides,[71] it was Papadopoulos who started the cycle of coups. Externally the absence of human rights in a country belonging to the Western Bloc during the cold war was a continuous source of embarrassment for the free world (considering Greece is seen as the inventor of democracy) and this and other reasons made Greece an international pariah abroad and interrupted her process of integration with the European Union with incalculable opportunity costs.[67]

The 21st of April regime remains highly controversial to this day, with most Greeks holding very strong and polarized views in regards to it. According to a survey by Kapa Research published in the center-left newspaper To Vima in 2002, the majority of the electoral body (54.7%) consider the regime to have been bad or harmful for Greece while 20.7% consider it to have been good for Greece and 19.8% believe that it was neither good nor harmful.[72]

In 1999, President Bill Clinton apologised on the behalf of the US government for supporting the military junta in the name of Cold War tactics.[73][74]

See also


  • Blum, William (1995). Killing Hope: U.S. Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II. Monroe, ME: Common Courage Press. ISBN 1-56751-052-3. 
  • Woodhouse, C.M. (1998). Modern Greece a Short History. London: Faber & Faber. ISBN 978-0-571-19794-1. 
  • Woodhouse, C.M. (1985). The Rise and Fall of the Greek Colonels. London. 

Citations and notes

  1. ^ Perkins, Bradford; Cohen, Warren; LaFeber, Walter; Iriye, Akira (1995). The Cambridge History of American Foreign Relations: Volume 4, America in the Age of Soviet Power, 1945-1991. Cambridge University Press.
  2. ^ Ganser, Daniele (2005). NATO's secret armies: Operation Gladio and Terrorism in Western Europe. Routledge. p. 216.
  3. ^ Moseley, Ray (November 17, 1999). Thousands decry U.S. in streets of Athens. The Chicago Tribune.
  4. ^ Kassimeris, Christos (2006). "Causes of the 1967 Greek Coup". Democracy and Security. 2(1), 61 – 72.
  5. ^ Miller, James Edward (1998). "The Rape of Greek Democracy: The American Factor, 1947-1967 (review)". Journal of Modern Greek Studies. 16(1), 162 – 166.
  6. ^ Marios Ploritis, "Διογένης και άνακτες", To Vima, 10 December 2000, (in Greek).
  7. ^ Stilis Alatos, "Tα καμπούρικα", Ta Nea, 15 February 2007, (in Greek).
  8. ^ a b C. L. Sulzberger, An age of mediocrity; memoirs and diaries, 1963–1972, New York: Macmillan, 1973, p. 575.
  9. ^ Alexis Papachelas, "Everything George Rallis recounted to me", To Vima, 19 March 2006
  10. ^ a b TV documentary "ΤΑ ΔΙΚΑ ΜΑΣ 60's — Μέρος 3ο: ΧΑΜΕΝΗ ΑΝΟΙΞΗ" by Stelios Kouloglu
  11. ^ Alexis Papachelas, "Constantine Speaks", To Vima, January 29, 2006.
  12. ^ a b Giannis Politis, "Συνεχίζει τις προκλήσεις Ο Κωνσταντίνος Γλύξμπουργκ", Ta Nea, 10 May 1997.
  13. ^
  14. ^ a b c d e f NATO's Secret Armies: Operation GLADIO and Terrorism in Western Europe. By Ganser Daniele (2005). pp. 220-223 ISBN 0714656070, ISBN 9780714656076
  15. ^ Obituary: George Papadopoulos Independent, The (London), Jun 28, 1999 by Robert Shannan Peckham Quote: "Greeks woke up on the morning of Friday 21 April 1967 with military marches and national folk music broadcast on the radio, and with the dictatorship a fait accompli."
  16. ^ Trial of the Junta Korydallos documentary
  17. ^ Greek Constitution (Syntagma). Retrieved 15 August 2008.
  18. ^ a b c d Third World Traveller (excerpted from the book Killing Hope: U.S. Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II, revised edition (Common Courage Press) ISBN 1-56751-252-6 by William Blum) Quote: " It was torture ... which most indelibly marked the seven-year Greek nightmare [under Papadopoulos]. James Becket, an American attorney sent to Greece by Amnesty International, wrote In December 1969 that "a conservative estimate would place at not less than two thousand" the number of people tortured. It was an odious task for Becket to talk to some of the victims:" and "So brutal and so swift was the repression, that by September, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and the Netherlands were before the European Commission of Human Rights to accuse Greece of violating most of the Commission's conventions. Before the year was over Amnesty International had sent representatives to Greece to investigate the situation. From this came a report which asserted that "Torture as a deliberate practice is carried out by both Security Police and the Military Police."
  19. ^ a b c Time Magazine archives Answering to History Quote: "Witness after witness testified that within a week of Papadopoulos' April 21, 1967, coup more than 8,000 had been arrested. Of these, 6,188 were banished into exile. Another 3,500 were subsequently sent to ESA torture centers. One prosecution witness, former Colonel Spyridon Moustaklis, 49, was unable to answer questions because brain damage caused by beatings had left him mute and semiparalyzed. Communicating by groans and gestures, glaring at the defendants, Moustaklis clumsily tore his shirt open to reveal the scars that marked his body. Said his wife: "We have a little girl who has never heard her father's voice." Verdicts on the 31 accused, which could lead to maximum sentences of 25 years, are due next month." Monday, Sep. 01, 1975 Retrieved 7 July 2008
  20. ^ Lawrence Van Gelder "Din nabos soen." The NY Times.
  21. ^ Lawrence Van Gelder (August 29, 1984). "DANISH 'PHOENIX' AND 'NEIGHBOR'S SON'." The NY Times.
  22. ^ Blum, William (1995). Killing Hope: U.S. Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II. Monroe, ME: Common Courage Press. p. 457. ISBN 1-56751-052-3. 
  23. ^ "James Becket bio from". IMDB. 1997-08-06. Retrieved 2009-04-18. 
  24. ^ Strand Bookstore Barbarism In Greece: A Young American Lawyer's Inquiry Into the Use of Torture In Contemporary Greece, with Case Histories and Documents by James Becket; (Foreword) Claiborne Pell PUBLISHER WALKER AND COMPANY ©1970 ISBN 1-399-77872-2 ISBN 09781399778725 ASIN B000MT61XO FORMAT Hardcover
  25. ^ Background to Contemporary Greece By Marion Sarafis, Marion Saraphē, Martin Eve p. 143 ISBN 0-85036-393-4
  26. ^ The Psychological Origins of Institutionalized Torture By Mika Haritos-Fatouros Published by Routledge, 2003 ISBN 0-415-28276-4, ISBN 978-0-415-28276-5 270 pages p. 28, Quote: "The country became a true military police state" By Google Books
  27. ^ The Poly-Papadopoulos Time Magazine archives Quote: "Many democratic-minded Greeks resent the open U.S. support of the Papadopoulos dictatorship. Last month Washington gave further evidence of its acceptance of his regime by negotiating for home-port rights in the bays near Athens for the Mediterranean-based Sixth Fleet. In addition, the Nixon Administration is trying to persuade Congress to up military aid to Greece from about $90 million to $118 million." Monday, 03 April, 1972 Retrieved 6 July 2008
  28. ^ "Helga on IMDB". Retrieved 2009-04-18. 
  29. ^ Summarised by the Horror Film Archive thus:"A young man finds himself turning into a bloodsucking monster. Set on the Greek island of Hydra. A must for all Cushing fans
  30. ^ Incense for the Damned on IMDB, which summarises the film as ""A group of friends search for a young English Oxford student who has disappeared whilst researching in Greece ..."
  31. ^ Review of "Bloodsuckers", New York Times
  32. ^ Woodstock, Greek blog site. Translation:...The beatings and arrests during the Woodstock showing in 1970....
  33. ^ a b Matt Barrett, The Rise of the Junta in Greece Quote1:In 1971 the movie Woodstock is shown in Athens, causing near riots. For young people it is one of the most exciting events of the period and when Jimi Hendrix appears on the screen the glow of a thousand bic-lighters and candles fills the theater. Quote2:Savopoulos becomes a hero of the youth. His album Vromeko Psomi (Dirty Bread) is a classic, a thinly veiled attack on the dictatorship, that if they heard it, must have had the colonels wringing their hands wondering what to do with this guy
  34. ^ a b Matt Barrett, November 17th, Cyprus and the Fall of the Junta Quote1:Because tourism is such an important part of the Greek economy, the bans on mini-skirts, long hair and other symbols of decadence are not enforced Quote2:Places like Paradise Beach in Mykonos and Matala, Crete become hippy colonies, made up mostly of foreigners and a handful of adventurous young Greeks
  35. ^ Nikos Mastorakis Museum of Broadcast communications: "Nikos Mastorakis was the TV personality sine qua non of the dictatorship years"
  36. ^ Nostradamos: Dos mou to heri sou (Give me your hand) on Youtube
  37. ^ Athens Guide on Socrates rock group "Socrates will probably never get inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. But while other groups were becoming well known in the free world, this Hendrix-style blues band was playing to standing-room-only crowds in a small club in Athens, during Greece's military dictatorship, a period when even Rolling Stone albums were hard to find, and for a time illegal"
  38. ^ "Millennium Top-1000: NOSTRADAMOS TA PARAMYTHIA THS GIAGIAS and DWS'MOY TO XERI SOY". Archived from the original on 2007-09-30. Retrieved 2009-04-18. 
  39. ^ Nostradamos Ta Paramythia tis yayas
  40. ^ Poll on Youtube
  41. ^ Greek forum for Kostas Tounas fans
  42. ^ "Kostas Tournas official website". Retrieved 2009-04-18. 
  43. ^ Poll Ela Ilie mou
  44. ^ Kostas Tournas article on Greek Wikipedia. "(The song) "Anthrope agapa" was motivated by an anti-war film"
  45. ^ Paul Williams: Anthrope Agapa on Youtube
  46. ^ a b Lost in Tyme. "After the split of "Poll", Kostas Tournas went on to record a great progressive-psychedelic concept solo album."
  47. ^ Greek Wikipedia article on Απέραντα Χωράφια
  48. ^ NME online music magazine
  49. ^ O Archon Nous (The Ruling Mind) from Astroneira
  50. ^ Recent Social Trends in France, 1960-1990 Michel Forsé Quote: "In addition the writing-off of agricultural debts, the gradual abolition of hard monetary policy and the supply of loans for opportunist investments created a climate of economic euphoria (mainly in 1970–1973). Although the way in which loans were being provided and their uncontrollable use constituted the introduction to the process of de-industrialization which begins with the Ioannides period. The collapse of the dictatorship, due to the nationalist fury of the last period, the Ioannides period, led to the collapse of the compulsive interconnections of power that the civil war and its consequences had shaped." p. 12 ISBN 0-7735-0887-2
    also Recent Social Trends in Greece, 1960–2000 By Dimitris Charalambis, Laura Maratou-Alipranti, Andromachi Hadjiyanni Translated by Dimitris Charalambis, Laura Maratou-Alipranti, Andromachi Hadjiyanni Contributor Dimitris Charalambis, Laura Maratou-Alipranti, Andromachi Hadjiyanni Published by McGill-Queen's Press — MQUP, 2004 ISBN 0-7735-2202-6, ISBN 978-0-7735-2202-2 701 pages Retrieved 15 August 2008
  51. ^ a b c d Ioannis Tzortzis, "The Metapolitefsi that never was" via the Internet Archive Quote: "The Americans asked the Greek government to allow the use of their bases in Greek territory and air space to supply Israel; Markezinis, backed by Papadopoulos, denied on the grounds of maintaining good relations with the Arab countries. This denial is said to have turned the US against Papadopoulos and Markezinis." Quote: "Thus the students had been played straight into the hands of Ioannidis, who looked upon the coming elections with a jaundiced eye." Quote: "The latter [i.e. Markezinis] would insist until the end of his life that subversion on behalf… Markezinis was known for his independence to the US interests." Quote: "In that situation Ioannidis was emerging as a solution for the officers, in sharp contrast to Papadopoulos, whose accumulation ‘of so many offices and titles (President of Republic, Prime Minister, minister of Defence) was harming the seriousness of the regime and giving it an unacceptable image, which was not left un-exploited by its opponents". Quote:"The first attempt of Papadopoulos to start a process of reform occurred in the spring of 1968. He was claiming that if the 'Revolution' stayed more than a certain time in power, it would lose its dynamics and transform into a 'regime', which was not in his intentions. He tried to implicate Markezinis in the attempt; however, he met the stiff resistance of the hard-liners. Another attempt was again frustrated in the end of 1969 and the beginning of 1970; Papadopoulos was then disappointed and complaining ‘I am being subverted by my fellow Evelpides cadets!’ As a result of this second failure, he considered resigning in the summer of 1970, complaining that he lacked any support from other leading figures, his own closest followers included. But the rest of the faction leaders renewed their trust to him." Quote: "The 1973 oil crisis finally dealt a real financial shock to the Greek economy, as it did to all non-oil producing countries, and marked the end of inflation-free growth in Greece for more than two decades."
  52. ^ KATHIMERINI. "Remember Pattakos, the striking baldie superstar of the junta, who never missed a chance to pose with a trowel at hand and never missed a documentary of Epikaira"
  53. ^ Elefthero Vima Quote: "Αλλά, για να έρθει και η ψυχική κάθαρση να βγουν τα κιτάπια των τραπεζών για τα θαλασσοδάνεια που πήραν επί χούντας οι ευυπόληπτοι πολίτες και αγόρασαν γη και οικόπεδα για να κτίσουν." Translation: .....for the loans of the sea which were received, during the junta years, by respected citizens and bought land and properties to build on"
  54. ^ John Karavidas, George Seferis and the BBC, BBC Greek service, translation by Google Retrieved 6 July 2008
  55. ^ "Biography of Günther Wallraff". 1969-12-09. Retrieved 2009-04-18. 
  56. ^ Το (πολιτικό) παρασκήνιο του τελικού στο Γουέμπλεϊ Ιούνιος 1971 Quote: "Δύο μεγάλα αθλητικά γεγονότα μέσα στην ίδια χρονιά, το 1971, έφεραν την Ελλάδα ξανά στο προσκήνιο μετά τη διεθνή απομόνωσή της για τρία χρόνια εξαιτίας του θλιβερού πραξικοπήματος του 1967. Θέλοντας να δημιουργήσει την εντύπωση μιας δήθεν φιλελευθεροποίησης στη λειτουργία του πολιτεύματος, ο Παπαδόπουλος «προκηρύσσει» μέσα στην ίδια χρονιά «εκλογές» για την ανάδειξη Συμβουλευτικής Επιτροπής, ενός είδους υβριδικής, μικρής Βουλής, και αδειάζει τα ξερονήσια και τις φυλακές από κάμποσους πολιτικούς κρατουμένους, μερικοί από τους οποίους παίρνουν διαβατήριο και αναχωρούν για το εξωτερικό. " ΦΩΤΕΙΝΗ ΤΟΜΑΗ | Κυριακή 20 Απριλίου 2008 Article: To Vima By Fotini Tomai 20 April 2008 (In Greek)
  57. ^ a b Ο κ. πρόεδρος και η χούντα from isopress "Mr President and the Junta" Ελευθεροτυπία, 30/9/2007 Eleftherotypia 30/9/2007 Quote: "Τη δημιουργία της «Επιτροπής» εξήγγειλε στις 10.4.70 ο δικτάτορας Γεώργιος Παπαδόπουλος σε συνέντευξη Τύπου, ως μέτρο φιλελευθεροποίησης του καθεστώτος. Οπως εξήγησε στους ξένους και Ελληνες δημοσιογράφους, ο Παπαδόπουλος χρησιμοποίησε τον όρο «Συμβουλευτική Επιτροπή», γιατί θεωρούσε τη λέξη Βουλή «ολίγον κακόηχον»."
  58. ^ Tsevas report Quote: "Οι Ιωαννίδης και Ρουφογάλης, δια των εις αυτούς πιστών Αξιωματικών και πρακτόρων, επηρεάζουν σοβαρώς και σαφώς την όλην επιχείρησιν, εξαπολύοντες κύμα βιαιοτήτων και πυροβολισμών, επί τω τέλει της δημιουργίας ευνοϊκών δια την προαποφασισθείσαν κίνησιν συνθηκών ασφαλείας, αναταραχής και συγκρούσεων."
  59. ^ Eleftherotypia Unrepentant for the Dictatorship Retrieved 15 August 2008 (In Greek)
    English translation by Google
  60. ^ a b BBC: On this day quote:A military communiqué announced the overthrow of the government was supported by the army, navy and air force and said it was a "continuation of the revolution of 1967", when the Greek colonels, headed by Mr Papadopoulos, seized control. The statement went on to accuse Mr Papadopoulos of "straying from the ideals of the 1967 revolution" and "pushing the country towards parliamentary rule too quickly".
  61. ^ "Greece marks '73 student uprising", and:the notorious Brigadier Dimitrios Ioannidis now serving a life sentence for his part in the 1967 seizure of power — immediately scrapped a programme of liberalisation introduced earlier and: His was but to do the bidding of a junta strongman who had never made a secret of his belief that Greeks were not ready for democracy. Athens News, 17 November 1999
  62. ^ Mario Modiano The Times correspondent in Athens, "A long, happy summer night 30 years ago", Athens News, 23 July 2004 quote1: My friend had been sworn in as a minister by mistake. After his coup, Ioannidis dispatched military policemen in jeeps to round up the people he needed to man a puppet government. When they turned up at my friend's home and ordered him to follow them, he was convinced that the soldiers intended to shoot him. quote 2: The meeting lasted five hours. Then there was a break, and by the time the meeting resumed, Evangelos Averoff, the former foreign minister, who was there, had already telephoned Constantine Karamanlis in Paris to urge him to return immediately and assume the reins of power.
  63. ^ "1974: Greek military rule gives in to democracy". BBC Online. 23 July 1974. Retrieved 23 July 2011. 
  64. ^ a b c d The Colonels on Trial Time Magazine Retrieved 15 August 2008
  65. ^ Monday, Sep. 01, 1975 (1975-09-01). "Answering to History".,9171,947162,00.html. Retrieved 2009-04-18. 
  66. ^ Greece Cancels Plan to Pardon Ex-Junta Members Time Magazine 31 December 1990 Retrieved 15 August 2008
  67. ^ a b Time magazine archives "I Am with You, Democracy Is with You" Quote: "Denied Benefits. When the Council of Europe tried to investigate charges that the regime was torturing prisoners, Athens quit the respected if powerless body rather than risk the inquiry. The Common Market was so repelled by the actions of the junta that it expelled Greece from associate membership in the EEC, thus denying the Greek economy some $300 million annually in agricultural benefits." and "Caramanlis called the crisis "a national tragedy" and appealed to Greece's armed forces to bring about a "political change" in a liberal and democratic direction." Monday, Aug. 05, 1974 Retrieved 6 July 2008
  68. ^ JSTOR Bitter Lessons: How We Failed in Cyprus Laurence Stern Foreign Policy, No. 19 (Summer, 1975), pp. 34–78 doi:10.2307/1147991 Quote: to crystallize as the Cyprus tragedy was enlarged by the Turkish invasion. ...
  69. ^ Coufoudakis, Van Recent Perspectives on Cyprus Journal of Modern Greek Studies — Volume 20, Number 1, May 2002, pp. 143–146 Quote: problem of Cyprus and might have spared the island from the tragedy of 1974.
  70. ^ Athens news online Quote: It was clear that this was a critical day for the future of Greece. Turkey had invaded Cyprus on July 20 while the general mobilisation ordered by the Greek regime turned out to be a major fiasco. The civilian government of Adamantios Androutsopoulos, appointed by the second junta under Military Police Brigadier Demetrios Ioannides, had suddenly vanished from public sight
  71. ^ Models of Transitional Justice — A Comparative Analysis Stephen A. Garrett International Studies Association 41st Annual Convention Los Angeles, CA March 14–18, 2000 Quote: Perhaps as important as anything else in establishing the vulnerability of that regime to prosecution was its total discreditation as an institution. Certainly the Cyprus fiasco played a key role here, but also important was the failure of the Papadopolous/Ioannides government ever "to consolidate, to institutionalize and to legitimate itself.
  72. ^ 20.7% of Electoral Body Sees 21/4 Dictatorship Positively, 21 April 2002
  73. ^ "Clinton lamenta el apoyo de EU a Junta Griega," La Opinión de Los Angeles, 21 November 1999, page A1.
  74. ^ Clinton concedes regret for U.S. support of Greek junta Topeka Capital-Journal, The, Nov 21, 1999 by TERENCE HUNT AP Retrieved 18 August 2008

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