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Encyclopedia > Axis occupation of Greece during World War II
German soldiers raising the Reich War Flag over the Acropolis. It would be taken down in acts of resistance throughout the occupation.
German soldiers raising the Reich War Flag over the Acropolis. It would be taken down in acts of resistance throughout the occupation.

This article is part of the series on: Image File history File links Akropolis_german_flag. ... Image File history File links Akropolis_german_flag. ... Kaiserliche Marine War Ensign (Reichskriegsflagge) 1871–1892 Kaiserliche Marine War Ensign (Reichskriegsflagge) 1903–1919 Die Reichskriegsflagge (Reich War Flag) was the official name of the war flag used by the Wehrmacht from 1871 to 1945 and Kriegsmarine from 1892 to 1945. ... Image File history File links COA_of_Greece. ...


History of Greece This article covers the Greek civilization. ...

Prehistory of Greece
Cycladic Civilization
Minoan Civilization
Mycenaean Civilization
Greek Dark Ages
Ancient Greece
Ancient Greece
Hellenistic Greece
Roman Greece
Medieval Greece
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Ottoman Greece
Modern Greece
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Axis Occupation of Greece
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The Axis occupation of Greece during World War II (Greek: Η Κατοχή, I Katochi, meaning "The Occupation") began in April 1941 after the German invasion of Greece. It lasted until the German withdrawal from the mainland in October 1944. In some cases, such as in Crete and other islands, German garrisons remained in control until May or even June 1945. Aegean civilization is a general term for the Bronze Age civilizations of Greece and the Aegean. ... Cycladic civilization (also known as Cycladic culture or The Cycladic period) is an Early Bronze Age culture of the Cyclades in the Aegean Sea, spanning the period from approximately 3000 BC-2000 BC. // Cycladic marble figurine of the Keros Culture type The significant Late Neolithic and Early Bronze Age Cycladic... The Minoans (Greek: Μινωίτες) were a civilization in Crete in the Aegean Sea. ... Mycenaean Greece, the last phase of the Bronze Age in ancient Greece, is the historical setting of the epics of Homer and much other Greek mythology. ... The Greek Dark Ages (ca. ... The Temple to Athena, the Parthenon Ancient Greece is a period in Greek history that lasted for around three thousand years. ... The Temple to Athena, the Parthenon Ancient Greece is a period in Greek history that lasted for around three thousand years. ... The Hellenistic period of Greek history was the period between the death of Alexander the Great in 323 BC and the annexation of the Greek peninsula and islands by Rome in 146 BC. Although the establishment of Roman rule did not break the continuity of Hellenistic society and culture, which... Roman Greece is the period of Greek history following the Roman victory over the Corinthians at the Battle of Corinth in 146 BC until the reestablishment of the city of Byzantium and the naming of the city by Emperor Constantine I as the capital of the Roman Empire (as Nova... Roman Greece The Greek peninsula became a Roman protectorate in 146 BC, and the Aegean islands were added to this territory in 133. ... Byzantine Empire at its greatest extent c. ... Greece was part of the Ottoman Empire from the 14th century until its declaration of independence in 1821. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Combatants Greek revolutionaries United Kingdom France Russian Empire Ottoman Empire Egyptian troops Commanders Theodoros Kolokotronis, Alexander Ypsilanti Omer Vryonis, Dramalis, Ibrahim Pasha of Egypt. ... Official Tourist Site HR-Net (Hellenic Resources Network)/ comprehensive Greek news site Official Greek Statistics Site Ask for Greece/ A volunteer community for Q&As about Greece Greece Museums/ Museum directory of Greece Take a short virtual tour of Athens Take a long virtual tour of Athens Greece Webcam Radio... German soldiers raising the Swastika over the Acropolis. ... Combatants Hellenic Army, Royalist forces, Republicans, British troops Communist guerillas (ELAS, DSE) Commanders Alexander Papagos, Thrasyvoulos Tsakalotos, James Van Fleet Markos Vafiadis Strength 100,000 men 20,000 men and women[] Casualties 12,777 killed 37,732 wounded 4,527 missing 38,000 killed[] 40,000 captured or surrendered The... The Phoenix and the silhouette of the soldier bearing a rifle with fixed bayonet was the emblem of the Junta. ... The history of the Hellenic Republic constitutes three discreet periods in Greek History: 1827 - 1832, 1924 - 1935 and 1974 - present. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000... For the movie, see 1941 (film). ... Combatants Germany, Italy, Bulgaria Greece, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand Commanders Wilhelm List, Maximilian von Weichs Alexander Papagos, Henry Maitland Wilson, Thomas Blamey Strength Germany: 680,000 men,[1] 1200 tanks, 700 aircraft, Italy: 529,000 men Greece: 350,000 men, British Commonwealth: 58,000 men Casualties Italy: 13,755... 1944 (MCMXLIV) was a leap year starting on Saturday. ... For the famous World War II battle, see: Battle of Crete For other uses, see Crete (disambiguation). ... 1945 (MCMXLV) was a common year starting on Monday. ...


Italy had initially invaded Greece in October 1940, and after their failure to conquer Greece, the German Führer Adolf Hitler turned his military focus to the southern Balkans. A rapid German Blitzkrieg campaign followed in April 1941, and by the middle of May, Greece was under joint occupation by three Axis powers: Germany, Italy and Bulgaria. Combatants Italy Greece Commanders Sebastiano Visconti Prasca Ubaldo Soddu Ugo Cavallero Giovanni Messe Alexander Papagos Strength 529,000 men Under 300,000 men Casualties 13,755 dead, 50,874 wounded, 25,067 missing, 12,368 incapacitated by frostbites, ca. ... Hitler redirects here. ... Insert non-formatted text here This article is about the military term. ... Combatants Germany, Italy, Bulgaria Greece, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand Commanders Wilhelm List, Maximilian von Weichs Alexander Papagos, Henry Maitland Wilson, Thomas Blamey Strength Germany: 680,000 men,[1] 1200 tanks, 700 aircraft, Italy: 529,000 men Greece: 350,000 men, British Commonwealth: 58,000 men Casualties Italy: 13,755...


The occupation brought about terrible hardships for the Greek civilian population. Over 300,000 civilians died from starvation, thousands more through reprisals, and the country's economy was ruined. At the same time, one of the most effective resistance movements in occupied Europe was formed. These resistance groups launched guerilla attacks against the occupying powers and set up large espionage networks, but by late 1943 began to fight amongst themselves. When liberation came in October 1944, Greece was in a state of crisis, which soon led to the outbreak of civil war. A female child during the Nigerian-Biafran war of the late 1960s, shown suffering the effects of severe hunger and malnutrition. ... 1943 (MCMXLIII) was a common year starting on Friday (the link is to a full 1943 calendar). ... 1944 (MCMXLIV) was a leap year starting on Saturday. ... Combatants Hellenic Army, Royalist forces, Republicans, British troops Communist guerillas (ELAS, DSE) Commanders Alexander Papagos, Thrasyvoulos Tsakalotos, James Van Fleet Markos Vafiadis Strength 100,000 men 20,000 men and women[] Casualties 12,777 killed 37,732 wounded 4,527 missing 38,000 killed[] 40,000 captured or surrendered The...

Contents

Fall of Greece

See also: Military history of Greece during World War II

In the early morning hours of October 28, 1940, Italian Ambassador Emmanuel Grazzi awoke Greek Premier Ioannis Metaxas and presented him an ultimatum. Metaxas rejected the ultimatum and Italian forces invaded Greek territory from Italian-occupied Albania less than three hours later. Mussolini launched the invasion partly to prove that Italians could match the military successes of the German Army and partly because Mussolini regarded south-eastern Europe as lying within Italy's sphere of influence. Greece dealt the first victory for the allies by resisting initial attempts of Italian invasion and pushing Mussolinis forces back into Albania. ... October 28 is the 301st day of the year (302nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar, with 64 days remaining. ... 1940 (MCMXL) was a leap year starting on Monday (the link is to a full 1940 calendar). ... Ioannis Metaxas (Greek Ιωάννης Μεταξάς, April 12, 1871 – January 29, 1941) was a Greek General and the Prime Minister of Greece from 1936 until his death in 1941. ... Combatants Italy Greece Commanders Sebastiano Visconti Prasca Ubaldo Soddu Ugo Cavallero Giovanni Messe Alexander Papagos Strength 529,000 men Under 300,000 men Casualties 13,755 dead, 50,874 wounded, 25,067 missing, 12,368 incapacitated by frostbites, ca. ...


The Greek army proved to be a more able opponent than Mussolini or his generals thought. The Greek forces counterattacked and forced the Italians to retreat. By mid-December, the Greeks had occupied one-quarter of Albania, before Italian reinforcements and the harsh winter stemmed the Greek advance. In March 1941, a major Italian counterattack failed, humiliating Italian military pretensions. The Greek defeat of the Italians is considered the first Allied land victory of the Second World War.


On April 6, 1941, Nazi Germany reluctantly came to the aid of Italy and invaded Greece through Bulgaria. Greek and British Commonwealth troops fought back courageously, but were overwhelmed. The Greek capital Athens fell on April 27, and after the capture of Crete, all of Greece was under Axis occupation. April 6 is the 96th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (97th in leap years). ... For the movie, see 1941 (film). ... Combatants Germany, Italy, Bulgaria Greece, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand Commanders Wilhelm List, Maximilian von Weichs Alexander Papagos, Henry Maitland Wilson, Thomas Blamey Strength Germany: 680,000 men,[1] 1200 tanks, 700 aircraft, Italy: 529,000 men Greece: 350,000 men, British Commonwealth: 58,000 men Casualties Italy: 13,755... The Commonwealth of Nations (CN), usually known as The Commonwealth, is a voluntary association of 53 independent sovereign states all of which are former colonies of the United Kingdom, except for Mozambique and the United Kingdom itself. ... Athens (Greek: Αθήνα - Athína) is the largest city and capital of Greece, located in the Attica periphery of Southern Greece. ... April 27 is the 117th day of the year (118th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar, with 248 days remaining. ... Combatants Greece United Kingdom New Zealand Australia Germany Italy Commanders Bernard Freyberg Kurt Student Strength United Kingdom: 15,000 Greece: 11,000 Australia: 7,100 New Zealand: 6,700 Total: 40,000 (10,000 without fighting capability. ...


The Triple Occupation

Map showing the three occupation zones. Blue indicates the Italian-occupied areas, red the German-occupied areas and green the Bulgarian-occupied ones.
Map showing the three occupation zones. Blue indicates the Italian-occupied areas, red the German-occupied areas and green the Bulgarian-occupied ones.

The occupation of Greece was divided between Germany, Italy, and Bulgaria. German forces occupied the strategically more important areas, namely Athens, Thessaloniki with Central Macedonia, and several Aegean islands, including most of Crete. Northeastern Greece (Eastern Macedonia and Western Thrace with the exception of the Evros prefecture) came under Bulgarian occupation and was annexed to Bulgaria, which had long claimed these territories. The remainder of Greece was occupied by Italy. After the Italian capitulation in September 1943, the Italian zone was taken over by the Germans, often accompanied by violence towards the Italian garrisons. There was a failed attempt by the British to take advantage of the Italian surrender to reenter the Aegean, resulting in the Battle of Leros. For Greece, the strength of the Axis occupation forces always owed more to the threat of invasion than to active resistance. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (899x917, 107 KB) Map showning the zones of control of the three occupying powers in Greece during WW2, from 1941 to 1944. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (899x917, 107 KB) Map showning the zones of control of the three occupying powers in Greece during WW2, from 1941 to 1944. ... Athens (Greek: Αθήνα - Athína) is the largest city and capital of Greece, located in the Attica periphery of Southern Greece. ... Thessaloniki, (Greek: Θεσσαλονίκη), is Greeces second-largest city and the capital of the Greek region of Macedonia and the periphery of Central Macedonia. ... Central Macedonia is one of the thirteen peripheries of Greece, being the central part of Greek Macedonia. ... Western or Greek Thrace is the part of Thrace located between the rivers Nestos (Bulgarian Mesta) and Evros (Bulgarian Maritsa, Turkish Meriç) in northeastern Greece. ... Evros (Greek: Έβρος) is one of the fifty-one prefectures of Greece and is the northernmost. ... The Armistice with Italy is an armistice that occurred on September 8, 1943, during World War II. It was signed by Italy and the Allied armed forces, who were occupying the southern half of the country at the time. ... 1943 (MCMXLIII) was a common year starting on Friday (the link is to a full 1943 calendar). ... Combatants Great Britain Germany Commanders Brig. ...


The German occupation zone

Economic exploitation and the Great Famine

Greece suffered greatly during the Occupation. The country's weak economy had already been devastated from the 6-month long war, and to it was added the relentless economic exploitation by the Germans. Raw materials and foodstuffs were requisitioned, and the collaborationist government was forced to pay the cost of the occupation, giving rise to inflation, further exacerbated by a "war loan" Greece was forced to grant to the German Reich. Requisitions, together with the Allied blockade of Greece and the ruined state of the country's infrastructure, resulted in the Great Famine during the winter of 1941-42 (Greek: Μεγάλος Λιμός), when an estimated 300,000 people perished, despite aid from neutral countries like Sweden and Turkey (see SS Kurtuluş). The great suffering and the pressure of the exiled Greek government eventually forced the British to partially lift the blockade, and from the summer of 1942, the International Red Cross was able to distribute supplies in sufficient quantities. [1] This article is about the Turkish freighter SS KurtuluÅŸ. For Ä°stanbul neighborhood of the same name, see KurtuluÅŸ. SS KurtuluÅŸ was a Turkish cargo ship that became famous for her humanitarian role in carrying food aid during the great famine that Greece suffered under the Occupation of Greece by Nazi... The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement is the worlds largest group of humanitarian non-governmental organizations, often known simply as the Red Cross, after its original symbol. ...


Nazi atrocities

German soldiers of the 117th Jäger Division in the burning town of Kalavryta.
German soldiers of the 117th Jäger Division in the burning town of Kalavryta.

Increasing attacks by partisans in the latter years of the Occupation resulted in a number of executions and wholesale slaughter of civilians in reprisals. The most famous examples being those of the village of Kommeno (August 16, 1943) by 1.Gebirgs-Division, where 317 inhabitants were murdered and the village torched, the "Massacre of Kalavryta" (December 13, 1943), in which Wehrmacht troops of the 117th Jäger Division carried out the extermination of the entire male population and the subsequent total destruction of the town, and the "Massacre of Distomo" (June 10, 1944), where an SS Police unit looted and burned the village of Distomo in Boeotia, resulting in the deaths of 218 civilians. Image File history File links Kalavryta_massacre. ... Image File history File links Kalavryta_massacre. ... Kalalvryta or Kalavrita (Greek: Καλάβρυτα) is a town, a province and a municipality in the eastcentral part of the prefecture of Achaia. ... Kommeno (Κομμένο) is a community in the prefecture of Arta, Greece. ... August 16 is the 228th day of the year (229th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1943 (MCMXLIII) was a common year starting on Friday (the link is to a full 1943 calendar). ... Mountain Brigade 1. ... The Holocaust of the city of Kalavryta or Massacre and Annihilation of Kalavryta refer to the extermination of the male population and the subsequent total destruction of the town of Kalavryta, in Greece, by German occupying forces during World War II on 13 December 1943. ... December 13 is the 347th day of the year (348th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1943 (MCMXLIII) was a common year starting on Friday (the link is to a full 1943 calendar). ... Wehrmacht   (armed forces, literally defence force(s)) was the name of the armed forces of Nazi Germany from 1935 to 1945. ... June 10 is the 161st day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (162nd in leap years), with 204 days remaining. ... 1944 (MCMXLIV) was a leap year starting on Saturday. ... The SS Polizei Division was one of the thirty-eight divisions fielded as part of the Waffen-SS during World War II. The division was formed in 1939 as part of the SS Police, and was transferred to the Waffen-SS in 1942. ... Distomo (Δίστομο) is a municipality in the Boeotia Prefecture, Greece. ... Boeotia or Beotia (//, (Greek Βοιωτια; see also list of traditional Greek place names) was the central area of ancient Greece. ...


Two other notable but almost unknown acts of brutality were the massacres of Italian troops at the islands of Cephallonia and Kos in September 1943, during the German takeover of the Italian occupation areas. In Cephallonia, the 12,000-strong Italian 'Acqui' Division was attacked on September 13 by elements of 1.Gebirgs-Division with support from Stukas, and forced to surrender on September 21, after suffering some 1,300 casualties. The next day, the Germans began executing their prisoners and did not stop until over 4,500 Italians had been shot. The ca. 4,000 survivors were put aboard ships for the mainland, but some of them sunk after hitting mines in the Ionian Sea, where another 3,000 were lost.[2] The Cephallonia massacre serves as the background for the novel Captain Corelli's Mandolin.[3][4] Kefalonia also known as Cephalonia, Kefallinia, or Cefalonia (Ancient Greek: Κεφαλλήνια Modern Greek: Κεφαλλονιά), is the largest of the Ionian Islands in western Greece. ... Port and city view of Kos town on the island Kos. ... 1943 (MCMXLIII) was a common year starting on Friday (the link is to a full 1943 calendar). ... September 13 is the 256th day of the year (257th in leap years). ... Mountain Brigade 1. ... Junkers Ju 87 Dive-Bombers The Junkers Ju 87 or Stuka was the most famous Sturzkampfflugzeug (German dive bomber) in World War II, instantly recognisable by its inverted gull-wings and fixed undercarriage. ... September 21 is the 264th day of the year (265th in leap years). ... The Ionian Sea. ... Spoiler warning: Captain Corellis Mandolin is a novel by Louis de Bernières. ...


The Italian occupation zone

The Bulgarian occupation zone

Bulgaria joined World War II siding with the Axis in an attempt to solve its "national question", or the unification of all Bulgarian-inhabited lands into a single nation-state, which had failed in the Balkan Wars due to conflicting interests with Greece and Serbia with regard to the borders in Macedonia. Bulgaria became part of the Axis on 1 March 1941, threatened with Nazi invasion and explicitly requesting German support for its territorial claims. Combatants Ottoman Empire Balkan League Bulgaria Commanders Nizam Pasha, Zekki Pasha, Esat Pasha, Abdullah Pasha, Ali Rizah Pasha Bulgaria: Vladimir Vazov, Vasil Kutinchev, Nikola Ivanov, Radko Dimitriev Serbia: Radomir Putnik, Petar Bojović, Stepa Stepanović Greece:Crown Prince Constantine, Panagiotis Danglis, Pavlos Kountouriotis Nikola Ivanov, Vasil Kutinchev, Radko Dimitriev The outcome... March 1 is the 60th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (61st in leap years). ... For the movie, see 1941 (film). ...


The Bulgarian Army entered Greece on 20 April 1941, at the heels of the Wehrmacht and eventually occupied the whole of northeastern Greece east of the Strymon River (eastern Greek Macedonia and Western Thrace), except for the Evros prefecture, at the border with Turkey, which was occupied by the Germans. Unlike Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy, Bulgaria set out to annex the occupied territories, with the result that the Bulgarian occupation was far harsher [5] than the Nazi and Italian ones. A massive campaign of "Bulgarisation" was launched[6] which saw all Greek officials (mayors, school-teachers, judges, lawyers, priests, gendarmes) deported, a universal ban placed on the use of the Greek language even on a private basis, the names of towns and places changed to the forms traditional in Bulgarian, land and housing expropriated and Bulgarian settlers introduced. A spontaneous and badly organized uprising around Drama in late September 1941 was crushed by the Bulgarian Army. By late 1941, more than 100,000 Greeks had been expelled from the Bulgarian occupation zone.[7] April 20 is the 110th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (111th in leap years). ... For the movie, see 1941 (film). ... For an explanation of terms related to Macedonia, see Macedonia (terminology). ... Western or Greek Thrace is the part of Thrace located between the rivers Nestos (Bulgarian Mesta) and Evros (Bulgarian Maritsa, Turkish Meriç) in northeastern Greece. ... Evros (Greek: Έβρος) is one of the fifty-one prefectures of Greece and is the northernmost. ... Nazi Germany, or the Third Reich, commonly refers to Germany in the years 1933–1945, when it was under the firm control of the totalitarian and fascist ideology of the Nazi Party, with the Führer Adolf Hitler as dictator. ... Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler Fascism (in Italian, fascismo), capitalized, refers to the right-wing authoritarian political movement which ruled Italy from 1922 to 1943 under the leadership of Benito Mussolini. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Drama (Greek: Δράμα) is a town in northeastern Greece. ...


The advance of the Red Army into Bulgaria in 1944, the withdrawal of the Wehrmacht from Greece in October and the Percentages Agreement between Winston Churchill and Joseph Stalin, meant the Bulgarian Army had to withdraw from Greek Macedonia and Thrace, leaving Greece with the difficult task of post-occupation reconstruction. Red Army flag The Workers and Peasants Red Army (Russian: Рабоче-Крестьянская Красная Армия, Raboche-Krestyanskaya Krasnaya Armiya; RKKA or usually simply the Red Army) were the armed forces first organized by the Bolsheviks during the Russian Civil War in 1918 and that in 1922 became the army of the Soviet Union. ... Sir Winston Leonard Spencer-Churchill, KG, OM, CH, TD, FRS, PC (Can) (30 November 1874 – 24 January 1965) was an English statesman, soldier, and author. ... “Stalin” redirects here. ...


Collaboration

General Georgios Tsolakoglou, who had signed the armistice treaty with the Wehrmacht, was appointed as chief of a new Nazi puppet collaborationist regime in Athens. He was succeeded as Prime Minister of Greece by two other prominent Greek collaborators: Konstantinos Logothetopoulos first, and Ioannis Rallis second. The latter was responsible for the creation of the Greek collaborationist Security Battalions. As in other European countries, there were Greeks eager to collaborate with the occupying force. Some because they shared the National Socialist ideology (for instance members of ultra-nationalist political factions and parties), others because of extreme anti-Communism, and others because of opportunistic advancement. The Germans were also eager to find support from the ideologically-similar Greeks, and helped Greek fascist organizations such as the infamous EEE (Ethniki Enosis Ellas), the EKK (Ethnikon Kyriarchon Kratos), the Greek National Socialist Party (Elliniko Ethnikososialistiko Komma, EEK) led by George S. Mercouris and other minor pro-Nazi, fascist or anti-Semitic organizations such as the ESPO (Hellenic Socialist Patriotic Organization) or the Sidira Eirini ("Iron Peace"). Georgios Tsolakoglou (Greek: , Agrafa, April 1886 - Athens, May 1948) was a Greek military officer who became the countrys first quisling Prime Minister during the Axis Occupation in 1941-1942. ... Wehrmacht   (armed forces, literally defence force(s)) was the name of the armed forces of Nazi Germany from 1935 to 1945. ... Collaboration, literally, consists of working together with one or more other people. ... Note on Greek names: There is no firm convention for the rendering of Greek personal names into English. ... Konstantinos Logothetopoulos was a distinguished Greek medical doctor who became Prime Minister of a quisling government during the Axis occupation of Greece. ... Ioannis Rallis (1878-1946) was the third Nazi collaborator prime minister of Greece, from 7 April 1943 to 12 October 1944, succeeding Konstantinos Logothetopoulos in the Nazi-held puppet government in Athens. ... The Security Battalions (Greek: Τάγματα Ασφαλείας, Tágmata Asfalías) were Greek collaborationist military groups, formed during World War II in order to support the German occupation troops. ... The National Union of Greece (Greek: Εθνική Ενωσις Ελλάς, Ethniki Enosis Ellas EEE) was an anti-Semitic nationalist party established in the Thessaloniki, Greece, in 1927. ... The Greek National Socialist Party was a minor Nazi party founded in Greece in 1932 by George S. Mercouris, a former Cabinet minister. ... George S. Mercouris (1886-December, 1943) was a Greek politician who founded the Greek National Socialist Party Born in Athens, he studied politics and economics there, Paris, and London. ...


In Nazi ideology, the Greeks were regarded as a German-friendly nation and were above Slavs in their racial scale. Adolf Hitler personally admired the ancient Greek civilization, the Spartan model and Hellenic classicism, which inspired many building and artistics endeavours in Nazi Germany. Hitler had no plans to occupy Greece either, and also resisted Italy's plans to invade Greece, which in the end were for this reason enacted without Benito Mussolini consulting Hitler. Also the fact that Greece in the 1930s had a fascist regime lead by the germanophile Ioannis Metaxas placed Greece on Hitler's list of potentially friendly nations. Furthermore, the Italians' failure to conquer Greece after their October 28, 1940 ultimatum and attack gained the Greeks the respect of Germany. For this reason Hitler ordered the Wehrmacht not to take Greek prisoners and allowed them to carry weapons, something no other defeated army was allowed to do. Hitler redirects here. ... Sparta (Doric: Spártā, Attic: Spártē) is a city in southern Greece. ... Benito Amilcare Andrea Mussolini (July 29, 1883 – April 28, 1945) was the prime minister and dictator of Italy from 1922 until 1943, when he was overthrown. ... Ioannis Metaxas (Greek Ιωάννης Μεταξάς, April 12, 1871 – January 29, 1941) was a Greek General and the Prime Minister of Greece from 1936 until his death in 1941. ... October 28 is the 301st day of the year (302nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar, with 64 days remaining. ... 1940 (MCMXL) was a leap year starting on Monday (the link is to a full 1940 calendar). ...


Resistance

Main article: Greek Resistance

However, most Greeks did not cooperate with the Nazis and chose either the path of passive acceptance or active resistance. Active Greek resistance started immediately as many Greeks fled to the hills, where a partisan movement was born. One of the most touching episodes of the early resistance took place just after the Wehrmacht reached the Acropolis on April 27. The Germans ordered the flag guard, Evzonas Konstandinos Koukidis, to retire the Greek flag. The Greek soldier obeyed, but when he was done, he wrapped himself in the flag and threw himself off of the plateau where he met death. Some days later, when the Swastika banner was waving on the Acropolis' uppermost spot, two patriotic Athenian youngsters, Manolis Glezos and Apostolos Santas climbed by night on the Acropolis and tore down the flag. It was one of the first actions of Greek resistance and among the first in Europe, and therefore inspired not only Greeks but also other Europeans under German domination. An ELAS soldier The Greek Resistance is the blanket term for a number of armed and unarmed groups from across the political spectrum that resisted the Axis Occupation of Greece during World War II. // The rise of resistance movements in Greece was precipitated by the invasion and occupation of Greece... The Acropolis of Athens is the best known acropolis (high city, The Sacred Rock) in Greece and in the world. ... Konstandinos Koukidis was the Greek Evzonas on flag guard duty on the 27th of April 1941 at the Acropolis during the Axis occupation of Greece during World War II. Koukidis obeyed, took the flag down, wrapped himself in it and jumped from the Acropolis to his death. ... Kaiserliche Marine War Ensign (Reichskriegsflagge) 1871–1892 Kaiserliche Marine War Ensign (Reichskriegsflagge) 1903–1919 Die Reichskriegsflagge (Reich War Flag) was the official name of the war flag used by the Wehrmacht from 1871 to 1945 and Kriegsmarine from 1892 to 1945. ... Manolis Glezos Manolis Glezos (Greek: Μανώλης Γλέζος) is a Greek left wing politician, notable for his participation in the World War II resistance. ...


The greatest source of partisan activity were the Communist-backed guerrilla forces, the National Liberation Front (EAM), and its military wing, the National People's Liberation Army (ELAS), which carried out operations of sabotage and guerrilla attacks against the Wehrmacht with notable success. A right-wing partisan organization, the National Republican Greek League (EDES), led by a former army officer, Colonel Napoleon Zervas a well-known Republican, and the National and Social Liberation (EKKA), led by Colonel Dimitrios Psarros, a Royalist. These groups were formed from remnants of the Hellenic Army and the conservative factions of Greek society. Starting in 1943, on a number of cases EDES and ELAS fought each other in a sort of prelude to the civil war that sprang up after the German departure in 1944. EAM alleged that EDES was aided by the German occupying forces and by the Nazi-supported puppet regimes of Tsolakoglou, Logothetopoulos and Rallis. This situation led to triangular battles among ELAS, EDES and the Germans. At the same time, ELAS attacked and destroyed Psarros' military formation, the "5/42 Evzones Regiment". The National Liberation Front (EAM) (Greek: , Ethniko Apeleftherotiko Metopo) was the main movement of the Greek Resistance during the Axis occupation of Greece during World War II. It was founded in 27 September 1941 by representatives of four left-wing parties : Lefteris Apostolou for the Communist Party of Greece (KKE... This article does not cite its references or sources. ... The National Republican Greek League (Greek: , Ethnikos Dimokratikos Ellinikos Syndesmos, abbreviated EDES) was a World War II Greek resistance movement. ... Napoleon Zervas (1891 - 1957) was a Greek general and resistance leader during World War II. He organized and was the leader of the National Republican Greek League (EDES), a resistance organization against the Nazi occupation of Greece. ... National and Social Liberation (Greek: , Ethniki Kai Koinoniki Apeleftherosis), also known by its initials EKKA, was the Greek Resistance movement founded by Colonel Dimitrios Psarros during Axis occupation of Greece. ... Dimitrios Psarros (Greek: ) was a Greek army officer and resistance leader. ... The Hellenic Army (Greek: Ελληνικός Στρατός) is the land force of Greece (The Hellenic Republic). ... 1943 (MCMXLIII) was a common year starting on Friday (the link is to a full 1943 calendar). ... Combatants Hellenic Army, Royalist forces, Republicans, British troops Communist guerillas (ELAS, DSE) Commanders Alexander Papagos, Thrasyvoulos Tsakalotos, James Van Fleet Markos Vafiadis Strength 100,000 men 20,000 men and women[] Casualties 12,777 killed 37,732 wounded 4,527 missing 38,000 killed[] 40,000 captured or surrendered The... 1944 (MCMXLIV) was a leap year starting on Saturday. ...


When Italy surrendered to the Allies in the fall of 1943, German forces actively hunted down and, in some cases executed, the Italian soldiers and simultaneously began serious attacks on EDES. There is evidence that Zervas then struck a deal with the German army. The right-wing partisans and Germans agreed not to attack each other. This truce left the Germans free of sabotage in some areas and allowed EDES to suppress local Communist rivals. The EDES-German truce ended in 1944, when the Germans began evacuating Greece and the British agents in Greece negotiated a ceasefire (the Plaka agreement).[8] 1943 (MCMXLIII) was a common year starting on Friday (the link is to a full 1943 calendar). ... 1944 (MCMXLIV) was a leap year starting on Saturday. ...


The stage, however, was already set for the next period of Greek history: the Greek Civil War. Combatants Hellenic Army, Royalist forces, Republicans, British troops Communist guerillas (ELAS, DSE) Commanders Alexander Papagos, Thrasyvoulos Tsakalotos, James Van Fleet Markos Vafiadis Strength 100,000 men 20,000 men and women[] Casualties 12,777 killed 37,732 wounded 4,527 missing 38,000 killed[] 40,000 captured or surrendered The...


Liberation and aftermath

Greece was one of the few European countries to gain territory from the Second World War when the formerly Italian Dodecanese became part of Greece in 1947. The Dodecanese (Greek: Δωδεκάνησα, Dodekánisa, meaning twelve islands; see also List of traditional Greek place names) are a group of Greek islands in the Aegean Sea, off the southwest coast of Turkey. ...


The Holocaust in Greece

See also: History of the Jews in Greece

Prior to the Second World War, there existed two main groups of Jews in Greece: the scattered Romaniote communities which had existed in Greece since antiquity; and the approximately 50,000-strong Sephardi Jewish community of Thessaloniki, originally formed from Jews fleeing the Spanish Inquisition in the Middle Ages. The latter had played a prominent part in the city's life for five centuries, but as the city had only been included in the modern Greek state during the First Balkan War, it was not as well-integrated. There have been organized Jewish communities in Greece for more than two thousand years. ... Mushroom cloud from the nuclear explosion over Nagasaki rising 18 km into the air. ... The Romaniotes are a Jewish population who have lived in the territory of todays Greece for more than 2000 years. ... Sephardim (ספרדי, Standard Hebrew Səfardi, Tiberian Hebrew ardî; plural Sephardim: ספרדים, Standard Hebrew Sfaradim, Tiberian Hebrew ) are a subgroup of Jews, generally defined in contrast to Ashkenazim and/or . ... Thessaloniki, (Greek: Θεσσαλονίκη), is Greeces second-largest city and the capital of the Greek region of Macedonia and the periphery of Central Macedonia. ... The Spanish Inquisition was established in 1478 by Catholic Monarchs Ferdinand and Isabella to maintain Catholic orthodoxy in their kingdoms and was under the direct control of the Spanish monarchy. ... The Middle Ages formed the middle period in a traditional schematic division of European history into three ages: the classical civilization of Antiquity, the Middle Ages, and modern times, beginning with the Renaissance. ... // Combatants Ottoman Empire Balkan League: Bulgaria Montenegro Greece Serbia Commanders Nizam Pasha, Zekki Pasha, Esat Pasha, Abdullah Pasha, Ali Rizah Pasha Bulgaria: Vladimir Vazov, Vasil Kutinchev, Nikola Ivanov, Radko Dimitriev Serbia: Radomir Putnik, Petar Bojović, Stepa Stepanović Greece:Crown Prince Constantine, Panagiotis Danglis, Pavlos Kountouriotis Strength 350,000 men Bulgaria...


When the occupation zones were drawn up, Thessaloniki passed under German control. Although they gave initial assurances, the Nazis gradually imposed a series of anti-Jewish measures. Jewish newspapers were closed down, local anti-Semites were encouraged to post anti-Jewish notices around the city, Jews were forced to wear the Star of David so they could be easily identified and further isolated from the Greeks. Jewish families were kicked out of their homes and arrested while the Nazi-controlled press turned public opinion against them. By December 1942, the Germans began to demolish the old Jewish cemetery so the ancient tombstones could used as building material for sidewalks and walls. [9] The Star of David The Star of David in the oldest surviving complete copy of the Masoretic text, the Leningrad Codex, dated 1008. ...


Despite warnings of impending deportations, most Jews were reluctant to leave their homes, although several hundreds were able to flee the city. The Germans began mass deportations in March 1943, sending the Jews of Thessaloniki to the Auschwitz death camp on a long journey, packed in box-cars like sardines. By the summer of 1943, the Jews of the German and Bulgarian zones were gone and only those in the Italian zone remained. Jewish property in Thessaloniki was distributed to Greek 'caretakers' who were chosen by special committee, the "Service for the Disposal of Jewish Property" (YDIP). Instead of giving apartments and businesses to the many refugees, however, they were most often given to friends and relatives of committee members or collaborators. [10] Auschwitz, in English, commonly refers to the Auschwitz concentration camp complex built near the town of Oświęcim, by Nazi Germany during World War II. Rarely, it may refer to the Polish town of Oświęcim (called by the Germans Auschwitz) itself. ...


In September 1943, after the Italian collapse, the Germans turned their attention to the Jews of Athens and the rest of until then Italian-occupied Greece. There their propaganda was not as effective, as the ancient Romaniote Jewish communities were well-integrated into the Orthodox Greek society. Thus they could not easily be singled out from the Christians, who in turn were more ready to resist the German auhorities' demands. The Archbishop of Athens Damaskinos ordered his priests to ask their congregations to help the Jews and sent a strong-worded leter of protest to the collaborationist authorities and the Germans. Many Orthodox Christians risked their lives hiding them in their apartments and homes, despite threat of imprisonment. Even the Greek police ignored instructions to turn over Jews to the Germans. When Jewish community leaders appealed to Prime Minister Ioannis Rallis he tried to alleviate their fears, by saying that the Jews of Thessaloniki had been guilty of subversive activities and that this was the reason they were deported. At the same time, Elias Barzilai, the Grand Rabbi of Athens, was summoned to the Department of Jewish Affairs and told to submit a list of names and addresses of members of the Jewish community. Instead he destroyed the community records, thus saving the lives of thousands of Athenian Jews. He advised the Jews of Athens to flee or go into hiding. A few days later, the Rabbi himself was spirited out of the city by EAM-ELAS fighters and joined the resistance. EAM-ELAS helped hundreds of Jews escape and survive, many of whom stayed with the resistance as fighters and/or interpreters. The Armistice with Italy is an armistice that occurred on September 8, 1943, during World War II. It was signed by Italy and the Allied armed forces, who were occupying the southern half of the country at the time. ... The Romaniotes are a Jewish population who have lived in the territory of todays Greece for more than 2000 years. ... Statue of Archbishop Damaskinos near the Athens Cathedral. ... Eastern Orthodoxy (also called Greek Orthodoxy and Russian Orthodoxy) is a Christian tradition which represents the majority of Eastern Christianity. ... Ioannis Rallis (1878-1946) was the third Nazi collaborator prime minister of Greece, from 7 April 1943 to 12 October 1944, succeeding Konstantinos Logothetopoulos in the Nazi-held puppet government in Athens. ...


In total, at least 81% (ca. 60,000) of Greece's total pre-war Jewish population perished, with the percentage ranging from Thessaloniki's 91% to 'just' 50% in Athens, or even less in other provincial areas such as Volos (36%). In the notable case of the Ionian island of Zakynthos, all 275 Jews survived, being hidden in the island's interior.[11] Coordinates 39°22′ N 22°56′ E Country Greece Periphery Thessaly Prefecture Magnesia Population 82,439 source (2001) Area 26. ... The island of Zakynthos (NASA World Wind satellite picture) Zakynthos (Greek: Ζάκυνθος), the third largest of the Ionian Islands, covers an area of 410 square kilometers and its coastline is roughly 123 kilometers in length. ...


Influence in post-war culture

The Axis occupation of Greece, specifically the Greek islands, has a significant presence in English-language books and films. Real special forces raids e.g. Ill Met by Moonlight or fictional special forces raids The Guns of Navarone, Escape to Athena and They Who Dare (1954) or the fictional occupation narrative Captain Corelli's Mandolin are eminent examples. Poster for Ill Met by Moonlight. ... The Guns of Navarone is a 1957 novel about World War II by British thriller writer Alistair MacLean that was made into a film in 1961. ... Escape to Athena is an adventure war film (with the elements of comedy) made in 1979, directed by George Pan Cosmatos. ... Spoiler warning: Captain Corellis Mandolin is a novel by Louis de Bernières. ...


Notable personalities of the Occupation

Greek collaborators:

Greek Resistance leaders: Georgios Tsolakoglou (Greek: , Agrafa, April 1886 - Athens, May 1948) was a Greek military officer who became the countrys first quisling Prime Minister during the Axis Occupation in 1941-1942. ... Konstantinos Logothetopoulos was a distinguished Greek medical doctor who became Prime Minister of a quisling government during the Axis occupation of Greece. ... Ioannis Rallis (1878-1946) was the third Nazi collaborator prime minister of Greece, from 7 April 1943 to 12 October 1944, succeeding Konstantinos Logothetopoulos in the Nazi-held puppet government in Athens. ... Colonel Georgios Poulos was a Nazi collaborator during the Axis occupation of Greece during World War II. He participated in Sonderkommando 2000, a German plan which aimed at infiltrating the Greek resistance movement. ... An ELAS soldier The Greek Resistance is the blanket term for a number of armed and unarmed groups from across the political spectrum that resisted the Axis Occupation of Greece during World War II. // The rise of resistance movements in Greece was precipitated by the invasion and occupation of Greece...

Other Greek personalities Aris Velouchiotis (Άρης Βελουχιώτης), (August 27, 1905-June 16, 1945, real name Thanassis Klaras/Θανάσης Κλάρας) was a prominent leader of the communist segment of Greek guerrilla resistance during World War II which was followed by the Greek Civil War. ... This article does not cite its references or sources. ... Napoleon Zervas (1891 - 1957) was a Greek general and resistance leader during World War II. He organized and was the leader of the National Republican Greek League (EDES), a resistance organization against the Nazi occupation of Greece. ... The National Republican Greek League (Greek: , Ethnikos Dimokratikos Ellinikos Syndesmos, abbreviated EDES) was a World War II Greek resistance movement. ... Dimitrios Psarros (Greek: ) was a Greek army officer and resistance leader. ... National and Social Liberation (Greek: , Ethniki Kai Koinoniki Apeleftherosis), also known by its initials EKKA, was the Greek Resistance movement founded by Colonel Dimitrios Psarros during Axis occupation of Greece. ... This article does not cite its references or sources. ... Giorgios Siantos (-1947) was a Greek communist and acting general secretary of the Communist Party of Greece and a leader of the National Liberation Front (ELAS) and Greek National Liberation Army (ELAS) during the German occupation. ... The National Liberation Front (EAM) (Greek: , Ethniko Apeleftherotiko Metopo) was the main movement of the Greek Resistance during the Axis occupation of Greece during World War II. It was founded in 27 September 1941 by representatives of four left-wing parties : Lefteris Apostolou for the Communist Party of Greece (KKE... Markos Vafiadis. ... This article does not cite its references or sources. ...

German officials: Statue of Archbishop Damaskinos near the Athens Cathedral. ... Manolis Glezos Manolis Glezos (Greek: Μανώλης Γλέζος) is a Greek left wing politician, notable for his participation in the World War II resistance. ...

  • Ambassador Günther Altenburg, German Plenipotentiary
  • Hermann Neubacher, Reich Special Envoy, 1942-44
  • Jürgen Stroop, HSSPF August-October 1943
  • Walter Schimana, HSSPF October 1943-October 1944
  • General Alexander Löhr, C-in-C South-East
  • General Hubert Lanz, Commander, XXII Army Corps
  • General Helmuth Felmy, Military Commander, Southern Greece
  • General Walter von Stettner, Commander, 1.Gebirgs-Division
  • General Karl Le Suire, Commander, 117th Jäger Division
  • General Friedrich-Wilhelm Müller, Commander, "Fortress Crete"
  • Dr. Max Merten, Chief of Military Administration, Salonika
  • Dieter Wisliceny, responsible for the deportation of Salonika's Jews

Italian officials: Jürgen Stroop in custody for war crimes Jürgen Stroop, (born Josef Stroop, September 26, 1895 in Detmold – March 6, 1952 in Warsaw), was an SS-Gruppenführer und Generalleutnant der Waffen-SS und Polizei, who served as the SS and Police Leader of the Poland-Warsaw area during... SS and Police Leaders were senior Nazi Party officials that commanded large units of the SS during and prior to the Second World War. ... SS and Police Leaders were senior Nazi Party officials that commanded large units of the SS during and prior to the Second World War. ... Alexander Löhr (May 20, 1885–February 26, 1947) was an Austrian Air Force commander during the 1930s before the Anschluss and, later on, a Luftwaffe Commander during the Second World War. ... Mountain Brigade 1. ... For the famous World War II battle, see: Battle of Crete For other uses, see Crete (disambiguation). ... Dieter Wisliceny (? 1911 - February 1948) was a member of the German Schutzstaffel, and a key executioner of the German Final Solution. ...

  • Ambassador Pellegrino Ghigi, Italian Plenipotentiary 1941-43
  • General Carlo Geloso, Commander, Italian 11th Army

British agents:

The Special Operations Executive (SOE), sometimes referred to as the Baker Street Irregulars after Sherlock Holmess fictional group of spies, was a World War II organization initiated by Winston Churchill and Hugh Dalton in July 1940 as a mechanism for conducting warfare by means other than direct military engagement. ... Christopher Woodhouse might refer to: Christopher Montague Woodhouse, 5th Baron Terrington (1917–2001), Conservative Member of Parliament for Oxford 1959–1966 and 1970–1974 Christopher Woodhouse, 6th Baron Terrington (born 1946), urologist Category: ... The Special Operations Executive (SOE), sometimes referred to as the Baker Street Irregulars after Sherlock Holmess fictional group of spies, was a World War II organization initiated by Winston Churchill and Hugh Dalton in July 1940 as a mechanism for conducting warfare by means other than direct military engagement. ... Sir Patrick Michael Leigh Fermor, known as Paddy, (born 11 February 1915, London) is a British author, scholar and soldier, who played a prominent role behind the lines in the Battle of Crete during World War II. He is famous in the genre of travel literature. ... The Special Operations Executive (SOE), sometimes referred to as the Baker Street Irregulars after Sherlock Holmess fictional group of spies, was a World War II organization initiated by Winston Churchill and Hugh Dalton in July 1940 as a mechanism for conducting warfare by means other than direct military engagement. ...

References

  1. ^ Mazower (1995), p.44-48
  2. ^ Chronik des Seekrieges 1939-1945, Württembergische Landesbibliothek, Section "War Crimes", entry on "23.9.— 19.10.1943"
  3. ^ Axis History Factbook
  4. ^ Reproduced articles from The Times and The Guardian
  5. ^ Xanthippi Kontogeorgi-Zymari "The Bulgarian Occupation of eastern Macedonia and Thrace in 1941-44", IMXA Publications, Thessaloniki 2002
  6. ^ Xanthippi Kontogeorgi-Zymari "The Bulgarian Occupation of eastern Macedonia and Thrace in 1941-44", IMXA Publications, Thessaloniki 2002
  7. ^ Mazower (1995), p.20
  8. ^ Twenty-Five Lectures on Modern Balkan History, by Steven W. Sowards
  9. ^ Mazower (2004), p. 424-28
  10. ^ Mazower (2004), p. 443-48
  11. ^ The Holocaust in Greece, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

Sources

  • Mark Mazower (1995). Inside Hitler's Greece: The Experience of Occupation, 1941-44. United States: Yale University Press. ISBN 0300089236. 
  • Mark Mazower (2004). Salonica, City of Ghosts. United Kingdom: Harper Collins. ISBN 0-00-712022-2. 

 
 

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