Last Letter of Aris Velouhiotis to the Central Committee of the KKE

Date: 24 March 1945; 
Source: Grigoris Farakos, Aris Veluhiotis. The lost archive — Unknown Documents pp. 400-404
Translation/Transcription: VN Gelis 
HTML: MIA Volunteer; 
Public Domain: Marxists Internet Archive (2013). You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit “Marxists Internet Archive” as your source. 

Aris Velouchiotis
Aris Velouchiotis

Dear Comrades,

With this note I am trying to get your attention to the things below.

1. I believe you are convinced that the Greek reactionaries and British occupiers have no desire to impose the non-negotiable and non-agreed conditions in the Varkiza accords, which go against our interests and that of the people. Serious breaches to those accords occur daily. You know them better than I so I don't need to recount them.

2. Were it once difficult to know the perspectives and desires of Greek reaction and the British enemies of Greece, I believe you can now see them. Their desire is not to fulfil the demand for a stable development of our political life and to accept your efforts in such a direction. On the contrary they, with all the means at their disposal, seek to organise and carry out a civil war in which all the conditions are to their advantage.

3. The conference at Yalta and the agreements reached there: you must not have any illusions about depending on that to decide the fate of this country as you permitted of the English. The Soviet Union is making policy for the World Revolution and so, as you know, cannot energetically intervene in the drama of Greece. Nor can it do so for Serbian, Bulgarian or even Russian politics. With its World Revolutionary perspective, it is unable to rescue this small part of humanity called Greeks but will, slowly but surely, lead us to the total victory of the politics of the world revolution. In this they cannot but be on the side of socialism.

4. If we, that is, you, through the exercise of a more correct and continuous policy, not one full of left and right opportunist errors, might be able to create in Greece a situation analogous to that of Yugoslavia. The possibilities certainly exist for the creation of such a situation in our country. Whoever doesn't see that must be, to say the least, lacking in Marxist understanding. Were these conditions to apply then the SU could intervene more 'actively' and indeed so might the USA.

It was clearly put forward by cde Giannis via Zisis (Giannis Ioannidis, Zisis Zografos) that there was a 'clear intervention' of the Russian comrades urging the KKE to complete the Varkiza agreement. But this does not change anything. After the endless opportunistic tactical mistakes from the beginning of 1943 and their criminal negligence in the battle of Athens they lost their trust and were forced to retreat so as not to lead to bigger disasters and to give in and close the Varkiza agreement. The views of the General Directorate of ELAS about the possibilities of continuing the struggle weren't made available to them and consequently the Russian comrades didn't know on which forces another set of politics could be based.

5. Until Lebanon the EAM followed an ascending line of development. From then on it started its downward spiral. From the battle of Athens and its defeat and even more so after the Varkiza agreement, it started to rapidly lose its influence. I foresee it's possible split in the period leading up to the referendum and the elections.

6. The KKE and the forces concentrated inside EAM lost their image amongst the people. It even lost much from its own members and close followers. You hold the figures but I am sure that you will have realised a serious number of departures. My perspective is that this percentage will be greatly increased.

7. The enlightenment of the people and the members and followers of EAM and the KKE arising from the 'necessity' of the Varkiza policy is a ridiculous joke and no member of the KKE believes it. What education can occur? Which magical manoeuvre could make black white? I leave the followers of EAM and the KKE as there is no member, secretary of a cell, or regional member, apart from a few exceptions, where the power of habit and routine does not allow them to see this as they pass every village with dread. When I pass the questions are more numerous than raindrops: Why did you do this? Where are we going? Why did we shed so much blood? Why did they burn our houses for three years? Why are you handing us over without a battle? What are we going to do now? Where is our popular justice our self-government? They will once more declare our lives illegal and charge us 2,000 drachmas for a cigarette. What will we do with the National Guard - those dumbasses who are carrying out inspections, beatings, have banned demonstrations, meetings etc. What will we do with the reaction in our villagers who have raised their voices and are openly threatening to kill us all? How will we protect ourselves? With the national army? How can it be a national army when we aren't accepted in it and the committees, using thousands of fraudulent justifications, consider us incapable? Don't you see that in the area of Karditsas from the class of 1939 they didn't even get near 20% from those who weren't their direct followers? All of this would become a storm directed against you had I not done all I could to try to avoid splits, refusing to go out and openly raise my views in case the issue could be solved by the party, and I didn't take our 200 or so guerrillas which had been in the mountains and start a war?

8. Everywhere our organisations had gone numb. Reaction has raised its head: our passing creates enthusiasm and heartfelt feelings shown when women come out and greet us saying 'good luck with the freedom you'll get from the new occupier'. Many leave for the cities. The EDES-ites from Euritania who had come with the clear order to create armed reactionary groups were supported by all. To the party people in the villages we say that we aren't able to show ourselves. We walk all night and hide in the day so as to be in line with what you agreed to. But the party people in the villages say to the villagers: 'our guerrillas have come out into the open. Soon we will all hit the streets, Aris is here so don't be frightened, we will prevail over the Greek reactionaries and English occupiers'.

9. You don't see any of this. You have been isolated from the popular masses and you have lost their pulse. Wake up. Even at this late stage it's not too late, but soon it will be and we will then need massive sacrifices in blood and toil. Don't let reaction permanently gain a foothold. Dispel your illusion that the 'National Guard' is truly a national army. Don't allow the people to accept that the 'Bourantades' are 'sons of the people', even as they beat them up. Don't commit the crime of allowing the National Guard to impose itself everywhere and play the role of the old National Guard.

10. Don't deceive yourselves that the guns you have hidden will be able to be used later. No! Soon the national guard will find at least a part of them and use them against us. Send out at least a few guerrillas, at least one group to the country. Don't label them as yours or a continuation of ELAS but keep it hidden. If it is that you don't want me in charge — then find someone else. But don't commit the crime of delaying but act immediately.

11. I am continuing the journey to the Ipiros bureau and from there abroad. But with some delay as we are travelling in the same manner I explained above.

Due to all the above reasons I expect a written answer and a special meeting before I reach the office in Ipiros. I expect you to think maturely up till that moment.

On the way

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