Dr. Alex Bebler

Peace and Greece


Material Might vs. Democratic Determination

American General Livesay, and General Van Fleet, his successor, have several times tried unsuccessfully to achieve this. They thought they could crush the Greek Democratic Army by the sheer weight of hundreds of thousands of tons of war materials and American military equipment, as well as by a huge superiority in numbers, if not by their military skill and leadership. They boasted that the Democratic Army would soon be crushed, annihilated. The U.S. Ambassador in Athens, Mr. Grady, is again making such boastful predictions, having learned nothing from the experience of his military colleagues.

The Democratic Army not only escaped annihilation, but has come out of all the campaigns and battles more experienced, bigger and stronger, better organized, with bigger units and divisions. In view of the smallness of the country and its relative poverty, this struggle of the Greek people is one of the most beautiful examples of the heroism of which a proud people is capable, one of the most beautiful examples of the inexhaustible resources which a people fighting for a just cause discover within themselves.

The army of the Athens Government, armed with the most up-to-date American and British weapons, with jet planes, with the most modern artillery, with tanks and other arms, well supplied with food and equipment, commanded by American and British generals and other officers: nevertheless despite its superiority of ten to one in effectiveness, and of 50 to one in armaments, as well as its absolute mastery in the air and on the sea, not only failed in its task of crushing the Democratic Army of Greece, but even failed to prevent that army breaking through the ring on Grammos, making its way to the rear of the enemy, entering Rumelia and Thessaly, and expanding the liberated territory.

The offensive power of the Democratic Army of Greece is best illustrated by figures given out by the GHQ of that army for the period June 14–August 21, 1948, during the battle of Grammos:

"According to incomplete data the monarcho-fascists suffered the following losses: 512 dead, 16,000 wounded, 439 prisoners, 1,289 surrendered. In the same period the anti-aircraft defense of the Democratic Army shot down 35 planes. Eighteen tanks and five guns were destroyed, and large quantities of war material captured." Such were the results of the widely-advertised Summer offensive of the Athens forces, of that 'death blow' against the Democratic Army which was struck under American Military Mission leadership, headed by General Van Fleet, with hundreds of American and British officers actively participating. This has proved to the world that the Greek Democratic army has emerged from the Grammos operation stronger than ever, more organized, endowed with greater war experience and skill, and that it has attained in struggle a higher degree of military organization and has begun the organization of units capable of executing large-scale strategic operations.

The formation of the Provisional Greek Democratic Government with General Markos at its head, in December 1947, was a consequence on the one hand of the great successes achieved by the Democratic Army, and on the other hand of the failure of the Athens regime and foreign intervention. As in the program jnd activities of the Provisional Greek Democratic Government, we emphasize here, before the United Nations, its peaceful foreign policy, inspired by the principles of the United Nations charter; and especially its wish to solve the Greek problem by national reconciliation based on a democratic and loyal agreement," a wish which should find its best reception iii the United Nations, for its fulfillment would transform Greece from a hotbed of trouble into a factor for peace.

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