SOE in Greece

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S.O.E in Greece: C.M. Woodhouse and British Interests 1 “I hold no brief for the Macedonians, the Bulgarians or any of the other semi- civilised races inhabiting the Balkan peninsula. Sentiment is out of place in dealing with these races.” Rowland Sperling, FO minute of 1928, cited by Livanios, p. 70. The story of the Greek resistance to the occupation of the Italians, Bulgarians and Germans during WWII (from April, 1941 to September, 1944) remains difficult to recount. Excluding the Aegean islands and Crete, the Axis essentially divided Greece into three parts, the north (excluding Epiros), Thrace (except for the land along the Ebro), and the rest of the country. 2 At various times multiple Greek cadres operated within these areas, few of which had viable contact with others within or without their operational districts. Moreover the enduring political split between monarchists and Venezilists in Greece was immensely destructive especially to the effectiveness and continuity of any of the smaller groups. There prevailed practically to the end of the war on the British side a plethora of alphabetic organizations (nine secret), military or quasi- military 3 with potentially overlapping charges and varying numbers and quality of 1 This essay assumes acquaintance with Greece, Greek politics of the 1940s, SOE Greece, and the situation in Southeastern Europe during WW II. Few concessions have been made for the parvenu. I have on occasion reminded readers of particular circumstances (e.g. Kosovo"s status during the occupation) simply to drive home a point. I present this essay to Professor Roy Arthur Swanson in recognition of his 75th birthday, a friend and colleague for thirty years. 2 On the consequences of this division, see Mazower, passim , but especially pp. 15-22. A very precise, closely documented discussion is to be found in Hionidou, pp. 11-14 wherein the author describes how such a chaotic division played out in the reality of the distribution of food during the terrible famine that gripped all Greece in the winter of 1941-1942. In fact her book is in many respects an exegesis on ill-conceived and incompetent occupation of a conquered country and just what can result from such, especially when the occupiers are intent on plundering foodstuffs and raw material as well as controlling the local population. The famine of 1941-1942 did not have to take place. Though focussed on the islands, her Chapter 8, “Population movement during the occupation” applies, mutatis mutandis , to the mainland as well. 3 A compact list for reference can be found in Seaman, Special Operations , pp. xii-xv, wherein a quick perusal will ferret out the non-British entries.

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S.O.E in Greece: C.M. Woodhouse and British Interests1

! I hold no brief for the Macedonians, the Bulgarians or any of the other semicivilised races inhabiting the Balkan peninsula. Sentiment is out of place in dealing with these races. ! Rowland Sperling, FO minute of 1928, cited by Livanios, p. 70.! ! The story of the Greek resistance to the occupation of the Italians, Bulgarians and Germans during WWII (from April, 1941 to September, 1944) remains difcult to recount. Excluding the Aegean islands and Crete, the Axis essentially divided Greece into three parts, the north (excluding Epiros), Thrace (except for the land along the Ebro), and the rest of the country.2 At various times multiple Greek cadres operated within these areas, few of which had viable contact with others within or without their operational districts. Moreover the enduring political split between monarchists and Venezilists in Greece was immensely destructive especially to the effectiveness and continuity of any of the smaller groups. There prevailed practically to the end of the war on the British side a plethora of alphabetic organizations (nine secret), military or quasimilitary 3 with potentially overlapping charges and varying numbers and quality of

This essay assumes acquaintance with Greece, Greek politics of the 1940s, SOE Greece, and the situation in Southeastern Europe during WW II. Few concessions have been made for the parvenu. I have on occasion reminded readers of particular circumstances (e.g. Kosovo"s status during the occupation) simply to drive home a point. I present this essay to Professor Roy Arthur Swanson in recognition of his 75th birthday, a friend and colleague for thirty years.1

On the consequences of this division, see Mazower, passim, but especially pp. 15-22. A very precise, closely documented discussion is to be found in Hionidou, pp. 11-14 wherein the author describes how such a chaotic division played out in the reality of the distribution of food during the terrible famine that gripped all Greece in the winter of 1941-1942. In fact her book is in many respects an exegesis on ill-conceived and incompetent occupation of a conquered country and just what can result from such, especially when the occupiers are intent on plundering foodstuffs and raw material as well as controlling the local population. The famine of 1941-1942 did not have to take place. Though focussed on the islands, her Chapter 8, Population movement during the occupation applies, mutatis mutandis, to the mainland as well.2

A compact list for reference can be found in Seaman, Special Operations, pp. xii-xv, wherein a quick perusal will ferret out the non-British entries.3

personnel, for any consistent policy, military or political, to be easily carried out.4 To add to this confusion Athens and Piraeus occupy a distinct position with respect to the rest of Greece: as its capitol it is its political and economic center; but its spiritual hold on the country is even deeper and more important. Yet Athens remained, as it does today, a world unto itself. The occupation tended to make this separation of Athens/Piraeus from the rest of the country starker: for instance, communication with Cairo could well be easier and quicker than with any of the the resistance groups in the countryside. ! The consequences of such a fragmented landscape have made for many difculties in the study of the resistance. Personal memoirs can only present a worm"s eye view of a whole far larger than the individual. Histories of specic units, authorized / ofcial or not, are similarly limited. Since the principal actors in this story are the British and the Greeks themselves, one would think that some kind of agreement might be possible with respect to the basic issues involved and the events themselves. No such luck. Consequently denitions are required. I believe that there are basically four versions of the Greek resistance, that of 1) EAM/ELAS (which would include the KKE), 2) the British5 , 3) the nationalist, non-monarchist center right (Rigopoulos" 5-16-5 and EKKA"s 5/42 6 resistance groups), and 4) the monarchy under king George II (the Tsouderos #government" in Cairo). These groupings are political, not military. What seems to have happened inspires interest. The accounts of EAM/ELAS and the British have remained distinct and generally hostile to each other; those of the center-right have coalesced with internal disputes acknowledged but generally passed over in discreet silence. The problems that this latter circumstance created even during the war can be clearly seen in Rigopoulos" accounts of persons he recruited into his organization.7 The grand British conspiracy to hobble the nationalist/non-communist right as perceived and adumbrated by Rigopoulos remains a curiosity for most rightist historians and a subject for derision by the British and the left.8 Nevertheless what his argument does reveal is the truly awesome cleavage between Athens and the rest of For S.O.E. see Mark Seaman, #A new instrument of war#; the origins of the Special Operations Executive, pp. 7-21 and David Stafford, Churchill and SOE, pp. 47-60; both in Seaman, Special Operations. A thumbnail sketch of some of the problems encountered within the British bureaucracy can be read in Andrew Roberts" Introduction to Garnett; for the dreary detail Garnett"s wonderful text will more than do (see pp. 35-40 and 68-73 in particular). There is a succinct review on the web:

Which would include amongst others EAM/ELAS, EDES. SOE/MO4, PWE, and OSS, as well as the FO, the British military, and the PM.5

In full: 5/42 Regiment of Evzones, the military wing of Psarros" EKKA which was formed in early 1943 and disbanded three times by ELAS, for good in April, 1944.6

Pages 38 and 48; note the slight but signicant shift in perspective. Rigopoulos himself is a paradigmatic example: a non-monarchist, republican center private person who had moved into the monarchist right by the end of the war.7 8

See Rigopoulos, p. 172, etc. I cite Rigopoulos in summary for copyright reasons.

Greece during the occupation. This circumstance cannot be ignored. Since I am not concerned with the monarchist account and only tangentially those of ELAS/EAM and the non-monarchist right, I will refer to them as required. This essay is about what I perceive to be the standard history of the events of the Axis occupation of Greece in Western Europe and America, which is that of the British. ! I begin with George II"s unconstitutional act of 1936 9 and end pretty much with the Dekemvriana of 1944. Since I no longer have access to a scholarly library, I will be working with books in English which I own or have been able to acquire. I deplore this deciency, but there is not much I can do about it. In addition Modern Greek history has always taken a back seat to Ancient, as any student of that country knows-- there"s a reason why we add medieval and modern when we talk about post-classical Greece ; moreover, only very recently have contemporary Greek scholars been able (or, perhaps, willing) to undertake the study of this period with a minimum of parti pris. My understanding is that there has been a !"#$%& '&()* of recent work on the 1940s that has been prompted by and brought to light much new material that exists in spite of the notorious state of affairs in the National Archives and the seemingly unending destruction of documents (see infra, n. 57). In addition HMG has released to the PRO (now renamed the National Archives) a mass of papers relating to SOE and its activities during the war years in Greece. These do not include all extant SOE archives, however, and, strangely, there has apparently been some censorship even now. ! In 1936 king George II of Greece prorogued the Assembly and handed effective power to Ioannis Metaxas, a very good staff ofcer during the Balkan Wars of 1912-13 who was trained in Berlin (where he was known as the Young Moltke), who stayed out of the 1919-1922 Greek invasion of Asia Minor (the Katastrophi), and who pretty much retired after that asco, only heading up a minor right-wing monarchist party in the early 1930s. What caused the king to act unconstitutionally was the result of the January 26,1936 elections, in which a virtual tie between the Monarchist Right and the Republican (Venezilist) Left left the balance of power to the Communists (KKE; a.k.a. Popular Front) who received 15 seats.10 Metaxas was granted dictatorial powers by the king"s suspension of several articles of the constitution and by his being permitted to rule by decree (with the king and the army behind him); until his death he was the Greek government.11 His appointment presented all Greeks with an insoluble problem. If you were a monarchist, you couldn"t go along with a dictator who, though he might rule with the king"s support, was still a living deance of the principles of a constitutional King George"s decision to suspend Parliament in 1936 had clearly been unconstitutional. Mazower, p. 98.9 10

For the numbers, see Hondros, pp.16-17.

The establishment of the dictatorship lay not in the threat of communism but in the King"s and Metaxas" rejection of parliamentary government and in the disruptive consequence of returning any republican ofcers to the army. Hondros, p. 22; Hondros" analysis pulls no punches and is by far the best short description of the Metaxas takeover I have read. See the brief but incisive discussion of Mazower, Balkans, pp. 129-130, which encompasses all of Southeastern Europe11

monarchy; if you were a Republican, you couldn"t support either the king or Metaxas. What happened could be predicted: the schism in Greek society which had existed since before WWI between the monarchists and republicans was both exacerbated and confused and ultimately transformed into something much more lethal than any previously experienced. ! Metaxas was an anti-communist au point de la lettre. He saw communists everywhere, and his Internal Security man, Konstantinos Maniadakis, was right in there with him. Metaxas created a regime which was not actually fascist but had many of the trappings of the fascist state12; in Maniadakis he found the right man to suppress dissent wherever it popped up, especially such that might be attributable to the dreaded Bolshevik13 . The consequence was that the KKE as a viable political organization was destroyed; but it went underground and survived in a way-- cells were independent so that the destruction of one was not necessarily fatal to another. Moreover members of the KKE, real or imaginary, were incarcerated in the same prisons as other #miscreants"; thus the prisons themselves became notorious recruiting and training grounds for the KKE14. A slender, but shall we say meaner KKE was preserved. Metaxas and his

Fascism is a political and social phenomenon far too large and difcult a subject. A recent study is Mabel Berezin, Making the Fascist Self. The Political Culture of Interwar Italy (Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell U.P., 1997), in particular her rst chapter, Interpreting Fascism/Explaining Ritual in which she discusses (amongst other aspects of the problem) #generic" as opposed to #national" fascism, an important distinction often neglected. Indirectly she has a good deal to say about Metaxas" Greece. Hondros" discussion, pp. 23-24, homes in on the revolutionary side of fascism and its middle class roots but fails to note the essential connection between the fascist state and large business corporations which was crucial for the political success of fascism in Italy and Germany. In Greece, the labor unrest, in some cases violent, that preceded the August 4th regime played a critical role in the political solution of the king and Metaxas. The problem then faced by both was their utter lack of popular support and a political base as well as at best a muddled, inconsistent idea of what they should do.12

...the undesirable effect on British opinion of M. [i.e. Constantine] Maniadakis, the #Himmler" of Greece. Michael Paliret, February 1940; cited by Barker, p. 96.13

See P. Voglis in Carabott and Skas pp. 151-155, who, though he describes a later period, might as well be talking about the Metaxas era. Smith (p. 232) quotes a retired Greek colonel as saying after the war: Prisoners go in as ordinary people and come out as Communists. He doesn"t give the source for this bon mot, but then there are no notes at all in his book.14

regime15 and the man who caused it to come into being, the king 16, were scorned if not hated by the Greek people. ! Metaxas, however, had his one moment of greatness. When presented with an ultimatum from Mussolini on 28 October, 1940 which, had he accepted it, would have made Greece an appendage of Italy, Metaxas at 3AM that morning said Ochi, No. He became an overnight hero, much to his delight17. The Italian army invaded Greece from Albania. The Greek army, poorly equipped and trained, defeated the Italians and pushed them back into Albania, whereupon the Greeks were stymied for the winter around Vlor, which the Italians were able to hold and resupply. In this unexpected victory very few of the Republican ofcers who had been cashiered by Metaxas and the king were permitted to ght; nor were communists, leftists, union organizers and anybody else who ran afoul of Maniadakis and his police. Hitler was apparently (in private rather than in public) furious at Mussolini, especially as he recognized that he was going to have to save his ally"s skin. In the meanwhile Metaxas had suddenly died18, and Greece was left without an effective leader: the king was hopeless and despised, army ofcers were suspect and parliament discouraged and oundering. Metaxas had assiduously refused to give leave to the British to bring in signicant Some historians use the phrase were indifferent to with respect to Metaxas, but those are weasel words: ...although all the evidence examined reveals that Metaxas was an unpopular leader, more evidence coming from the same sources suggests that contrary to his unpopular image, the public reaction was one of passive tolerance and general apathy., Petrakis, p. 189. Greek indifference amounts to contempt and hatred.15

...the King"s unpopularity with the majority of his subjects..., Smith, p. 117, an understatement to say the least. Hondros, pp. 22-23, supplies some very revealing statements from the king regarding Greece and the Greeks. See George Taylor"s long comment in Auty and Clogg, pp. 261-263; I think it fair to say, as a sort of summary conclusion, that this information built up a picture which showed that in the total eld of resistance in Greece, in the mountains and in Athens and other cities, there was an absolutely unanimous attitude of hostility and distrust of the Royal Hellenic Government and of the King. It was quite unmistakable. (p. 262)16

It was at this time that Metaxas achieved his life"s dream and was able to overcome his past insecurities and become a beloved leader and an accepted politician. The feelings of his people towards him in the nal months of his life are reected in his lament: #They accused me, exiled me, sentenced me to death (in absentia incidentally) but nally even for me there came in my seventieth year the moment of recognition." Petrakis, p. 197; the direct quotation is cited from Vatikiotis, Panagiotis, Popular Autocracy in Greece 1936-1941, A Political Biography of General Ioannis Metaxas, the Metaxas Dictatorship. ELIAMEP-Vryonis Center, Athens, 1993, p. 203. Woodhouse"s #obituary" in Apple, p. 9 is nicely phrased and dead accurate.17

It is astonishing how many of the old-line Greek politicians died between 1935 and 1945, thus potentially at least leaving the country to younger men; Papandreou was a real dinosaur when he returned to Greece in 1944, and yet he lasted twenty years longer; George himself died on 1 April 1947.18

military support, both men and materiel, on the grounds that such permission would give Hitler an excuse to move against Greece. He and his fellow countrymen felt condent ghting the Italians but the Germans were a different matter19 . His successor, Alexander Koryzis, (who actually took Metaxas" place as dictator because Metaxas" mandate had not been cancelled by George upon the dictator"s death) had no such scruples if only because it was clear in January of 1941, at the time of Metaxas" death, that the Germans were going to have to come in or possibly see the Italians thrown out of Albania20 . Yet even so General Alexandros Papagos and king George were hesitant to grant the RAF use of Greek airelds, even for bombing Rumania (see Berker, p.43). The British nally did respond to a Greek appeal and sent in about 50,000 men21 , some equipment and a few airplanes. But the Germans moved too quickly and with professional tactical assurance. The invasion of Greece started at the beginning of April and was over during the third week; Crete was taken shortly afterwards 22. ! The Germans dictated the terms of the occupation. Italy, scorned by the Greeks, was given control of the country outside the Piraeus, Macedonia, the Turkish border area, and a few of the Aegean Islands and most of Crete, all of which were to be under the Germans; the Bulgarians were given Thrace and eastern Macedonia to rape 23. The king, his entourage, and many ofcers were evacuated rst to Crete, then to Cairo, and thence they were sent to South Africa, and nally to London. George left his country in the lurch, having given no instructions to anybody about resistance or indeed anything

At the onset of the Italian invasion of Greece Metaxas asked for help from the British in supplies and material, in particular air support. A very modest contribution of two Blenheim squadrons was sent in November, and not much more. Barker (p. 100) quotes Lord Halifax: ...the difculty was to nd a way of heartening the Greeks without disclosing our weakness in the Middle East. And when Archibald Wavell went to Athens in January, 1941 to offer a modest contribution of men, Metaxas made no bones about his needs: it would take nine British divisions to beat back an invasion by the Germans. Metaxas refused anything less than that. (See Barker, p. 101-102.)19 20

See Mazower, pp. 15-16; Hondros, pp. 48-50. 102) Mostly Anzacs-- Churchill seemed to have specialized in killing them .


For the invasion of Greece , the campaign that followed, the capitulation, the battle for Crete, and subjects related to them, any one of the standard histories of Modern Greece should sufce. For the British side, see Smith, pp. 39-67. The main bones of contention do not engage attention in this essay, in particular the contribution of king George which Barker nds perhaps signicant (p. 103)22

See the ne contribution of Xanthippi Kotzageorgi-Zymari (with Tassos Hadjianastassiou), Memories of the Bulgarian Occupation of Eastern Macedonia: Three Generations, in Mazower, After, pp. 273-192.23

else and leaving no legitimate government intact24 . An early act of the Germans, oddly enough, was to free many of the political prisoners held by the Metaxas regime; Nikos Zachariades, however, the rst secretary of the KKE was sent to Dachau where he spent the entire war. Many freed KKE members claimed Bulgarian citizenship and were supported by the Bulgarian government-- hence their release. The Germans, for their part, were trying to pin the disaster that befell Greece on Metaxas, the king, and their policies. The freed communists for the most part immediately headed for the mountains and/or went into hiding. Far more quickly than could be imagined, they founded and organized a political organization (EAM) and, later, a resistance army (ELAS). These men were well trained, tough, and resourceful25 . The KKE as a body was at that time Stalinist to the core; ssures in its politics only arose much later. ! As the occupation settled in resistance became evident. The British had been Greece"s sole ally (after the fall of France) and vice-versa. The English had a longstanding friendship with Greece that was really that of a master-client, and it soon became evident that England would do all it could to assure itself of the continuation of this fealty after the war. Moreover Churchill, when he became PM, took a particular interest in Greece and especially in the restoration of the king, and he communicated such to the Foreign Ofce which was inhabited de natura by men of a like mind. But Churchill had also caused to be created the Special Operations Executive (SOE) which he instructed to set Europe ablaze (famous phrase); this organization was to have minimal direct operational contact with any other, military or civilian, government ofce26. Greece and Turkey were originally regarded as Mediterranean countries and not part of Southeastern Europe (See Barker, p. 6) by HMG, but eventually these became part of the Near Eastern desk and headquartered in Cairo, along with the rest of Southeastern Europe. Soon thereafter the king and his fellow refugees were sent to Cairo. So Cairo became the cockpit (or cesspool) of the Greek resistance. Or so the British thought. ! Early efforts at organizing a Greek resistance by the British were, to be blunt, pathetic, and in one outstanding case actually so disastrous that the result was the break-up of the entire existing network in Athens and environs27 . The rst group of British operatives to go into Greece was code named #Harling", and its objective was to blow up one of the three single track railroad bridges in Central Greece that connected See Mazower, Chapter 8; with almost no encouraging news from abroad, what Theotokas called the #grim ugliness of foreign subjection" seemed to have subdued the Greeks. They were leaderless and confused, neither King George in exile nor Tsolakoglou offering anything to rally round. p. 89.24

See Woodhouse, Struggle, pp. 17-20. On the rise of EAM see Mazower, Chapter 9, which details the collapse of the traditional political parties in the face of the defeat and occupation.25 26

For the story of the founding of SOE, see supra, note 3.

On the Atkinson-Grammatikakis operation, see Gerolymatos, pp. 222-228; it was this debacle that forced Kanellopoulos to decamp to the Near East. See too Bickham Sweet-Escott in Auty and Clogg, p. 18.27

Thessalonike with Piraeus and helped to supply Hitler"s Afrika Korps. At the time it was sent in the British were reeling back towards Cairo-- people were burning papers right and left, including the early records of SOE-- and their army needed all the help it could get. In the event the group successfully blew the Gorgopotamos Bridge in late November, three weeks too late to help Montgomery who had already won at El Alamein. The original plan called for everybody in the unit to be evacuated by submarine from the west coast of Central Greece except for C.M. Woodhouse and a radio man who were to stay behind and remain with a not so amiable rascal named Napoleon Zervas who supposedly had collected together an #army" in western Greece and was the leader of a movement with the acronym EDES 28. The British had heard of it and gured it might be made into a pro-monarchy national movement, but this was pure moonshine. Zervas was a petty dictator who could never delegate authority; moreover, his republican credentials were very suspect, but he was at that time not about to come out in support of the king. In fact at no time during the occupation was there any resistance organization anywhere in Greece that fought openly for the monarchy 29. ! The story of the #Harling" operation in Greece is to say the least peculiar30 . It took over ve weeks for the men who rst parachuted in to nd themselves and their Greek allies (or enough of them to pull the mission off); the reason: they had been dropped at the wrong place. As it turned out, however, Woodhouse walked across Greece in early winter, by himself, hunting for Zervas (who of course had waited at the correct drop point). He found him and brought him back with some of his men. In the meanwhile Aris

No good biography of Zervas exists in English; the history of EDES itself is completely tied up with the resistance-- it did not survive the war for long-- and is covered by any number of books on that subject. There is a good summary of EDES and its leader in Hondros, pp. 104-107. Livanios (p. 148), in his brief discussion of the formation of a JGHQ in Greece, describes Zervas as a right-wing guerilla leader, a phrase that carries a little too much baggage for my taste28

I am cognizant of the existence of non-Republican/leftist resistance groups in Athens as well as the #Six Colonels" and the mission of Ioannis Tsigantes; Hondros, p. 103f. These groups did not ght openly for the king. Hondros" statement (p. 101) stands: The most effective internal political, social and economic force emerged in the form of an anti-monarchist resistance which seized the initiative in Greek affairs by the early months of 1943.29

Condit provides a good, concise overview of this mission, pp. 29-32; Myers" book is fullest and most detailed account of all.30

Velouchiotis31 of the then nascent ELAS had found the remaining British and with them joined the main #Harling" group. When Aris and Zervas met chez les British polity was the order of the day; but they hated and mistrusted each other, and for good reason. Aris was a ve star thug. He was also one of the founders of ELAS. There"s a contemporary drive afoot in Greece to make him a great hero of the war; he was hardly that, especially after 1943. After the success of Gorgopotamos, Aris went his way, and Zervas and the British went theirs. The success, however, caused Cairo to think again about the Greek resistance, and after a harrowing hike across Greece to the Ionian Sea, the leader of the group, Eddie Myers, and his miserable men on St. Stephen"s Day while freezing in hiding along the west coast, found out that Cairo had ordered the lot of them to remain in Greece and form a British Liaison Group (BLG). Myers was Jewish (mentioned only once in my reading-- see Endnote, infra-- but not unimportant when dealing with the mandarins of the FO and the British Army) and his chances of surviving the tender mercies of the Gestapo were slim, a trained engineer and no politician; he was put in an impossible position since not only did he not speak Greek but he also had had no brieng at all on the then-existing political situation in Greece, even though SOE and the FO knew quite a lot about EAM/ELAS and EDES. So here these British SOE operatives were, surrounded by hostile Italians and Germans in the midst of a bunch of slippery characters right out of the grand 18th/19th century tradition of the Greek bands that robbed, raped, destroyed, and and played fast and loose with their loyalties 32. Under the circumstances Myers did a brilliant job 33.

There is a good deal of #information" about Aris to be found on the web-- YouTube for instance-- and in print. See Hamson, pp. 98-99 (It is indicative of the depth and range of misinformation in E. D. Smith"s book that Hamson"s name is misspelt throughout as #Hanson".) ; Myers, pp. 71-73; Hammond, p. 126; and Woodhouse Struggle, pp. 3-6. All these are British eye-witnesses and refer to him repeatedly, of course. Mazower, pp. 125-125; Hondros, pp. 133-134; Gerolymatos, pp. 209-210 with note 99. These are all modern assessments. For Aris" end, see Woodhouse, Struggle, pp. 140-141; the actual circumstances of his death are unclear. (Smith"s account, pp. 233-234, is the standard vague report.)31

Koliopoulos, passim, and read with an eye towards the resistance and compare Mazower, p. 129 and ibid., Balkans, pp. 107-108. Compare S.W. Bailey"s comments on the difference between Tito"s Partisans and Mihailovi$"s Chetniks in Auty and Clogg, p. 64 (in his British Policy Towards General Dra%a Mihailovi$).32

See Mazower, Chapter 13, one of the sanest and most consistent analyses of Myers" achievement I have found, brief but compelling. Woodhouse, who clearly respected Myers as a person and an ofcer, stood by him and later, as an example, in EAM and the British Connection (Iatrides, p. 101) commented: What was inexcusable was that they [i.e. the FO] vented their indignation on Myers personally. Later in this paragraph he uses the word vendetta.33

! The crunch came quickly 34. It became very clear that few Greeks would give any trust to anybody who was perceived to support the monarchy. Outside of Athens, soon enough fear of ELAS (present almost from the very beginning, if only because of such armed personnel as Aris) was matched by fear of the Italians, Germans and later in the war the Security Battalions and the #X" [i.e. chi] organization. When not under attack by the Axis or, in late 1943 and 1944, the Right, villages and towns beyond its control would be taken over by ELAS and its governmental structure imposed. These local administrations were very often respected and endured. In fact, by the end of 1943 much of non-urban Greece (most of the country) was controlled in some way by EAM/ ELAS and supported the resistance. Myers had long before faced up to this fact and did his damnedest to put its reality across to his bosses, namely SOE Cairo, Baker Street and a fortiori the FO (even Smith admits as much, p. 107). None would listen willingly to the truth, although SOE (conscious that there was war going on) did inconsistently and grudgingly give some support to EAM/ELAS. Myers had no doubt that the KKE controlled EAM and through it ELAS, but he wanted to kill Germans and Italians and not worry about the far off future-- and in 1942 and much of 1943 the future was a long way off35. The central person with respect to what happened in Greece is Woodhouse who turns out to be a very cagey character in his own right. The FO became so angry with SOE and with Myers36 , who was working with ELAS as an (albeit difcult) ally, that it arranged to have David Wallace dropped into Greece (in mid 1943) to become Myers" political advisor (a.k.a. commissar; see Myers in Auty and Clogg, p. 268) and to report on the situation there. Wallace apparently reported (twice) that Myers was right in his analysis of the actual circumstances of the Greek resistance: nothing could be done without ELAS, which by this time (mid 1943) virtually controlled the interior of Greece. But a strange thing happened when Wallace returned to Cairo; he

I now enter the most difcult part of this essay. I have tried to incorporate as much detail in this account as I can, but inevitably some will be omitted.34 35

The Greeks knew at least locally who had the power: see e.g. Mazower, 133

Clogg (Anglo-Greek Attitudes, p. 83): What is rather surprising is the extent to which the documents reveal the depth of the bitterness, already known from other sources, felt by the Foreign Ofce for SOE, as presumably those of SOE, if they were made available, would reveal similar attitudes on the part of SOE towards the Foreign Ofce/ There are innumerable references to the #ramps" being perpetrated by SOE, to telegrams from SOE being #Pearls from Swine", to SOE"s inevitable preference for the #cranky and unorthodox", to the purported lack of political nesse of their operatives. Leeper, for instance, described Brigadier Myers as #a complete disaster", #a very dangerous fool", and a #fanatic #with a very strong streak of megalomania", while he found General Gubbins to be #a very difcult man." For more on Leeper see next note. Barker calls attention to the unfortunate position of SOE in relation to the FO and the Military, a sort of unwanted step-daughter, p. 149-150 and 165. I guess it is only fair to point out that Churchill once called Giorgios Papandreou an old fool (Barker p. 169); proximity to Hellenic matters can bring out the worst in anybody.36

changed his mind after talking with Reginald Leeper37 , the British Ambassador to the Greek government in Cairo (i.e. the king). Wallace, by the way, was embarrassed about the whole thing38, but unfortunately he was killed later in the war in Western Greece so his version of these events cannot be recovered39. In August, 1943 Myers came out of Greece to Cairo with some of the principal leaders of the resistance, including KKE members representing EAM/ELAS. Though the FO and SOE wanted this famous powwow (#the Cairo Conference") to be about military matters only, they failed to pull it off. The only issue was the king. The Cairo meeting was an unmitigated disaster, and the resistance people were insulted40. Myers himself was shipped off to England where he was reassigned and did not return to Greece for the duration of the war. Woodhouse took over from Myers. Relations between the British and the Greek resistance, now virtually ELAS, remained rocky to say the least. The Greeks (and the Americans in OSS) thought, quite rightly in my view, that the British, pushed by Churchill and the FO, I wish I could say something really positive about Leeper. As all modern commentators note, it was he who really went after Myers from the time of the Cairo conference in August, 1943 until he nally managed to get rid of him (with a little help from the FO) later that year. He was also behind the Wallace mission which turned out to be a hatchet job on Myers (in spite of all of Wallace"s words to the contrary) and which resulted in the ascendancy of Woodhouse coupled with the taming of SOE. This part of the story has a rancid smell about it; see Hondros, pp. 167-168; Clogg, Anglo-Greek Attitudes, Chapter 5. There is a fascinating exchange of thoughts about Leeper in Auty and Clogg, pp. 259-279.37

On no occasion did he [i.e. Wallace] indicate to me that he had been brainwashed in the way that Leeper"s account suggests. But he was a very embarrassed man in my company when talking about subjects which we had previously agreed. I would put a more generous interpretation on it, as has been suggested by Woodhouse just now, that he was torn between two loyalties, one to me, who had been his temporary commander in the mountains, and secondly to his actual bosses in Cairo. When Leeper changed his mind Wallace was placed in a very invidious position as regards me. (Myers in Auty and Clogg, pp. 270-271)38

The document usually reprinted is his version dated and signed Cairo, 29 August 1943. There is a complete text available in Clogg, Greece 1940-1949, pp. 118-152. Pages xxx-xxxiv in Baerenzen, British Reports, comprises a brief overview of Wallace"s army life and of his unfortunate death in action. See Clogg"s discussion: The Foreign Ofce... in Anglo-Greek Attitudes, especially pp. 86-99.39

A lot of controversy surrounds this meeting, most of which was caused by Leeper. See the detailed, sober account of Clogg, The Foreign Ofce, SOE, and the Greek Resistance, in Anglo-Greek Attitudes, pp. 90-100, with references. There is also a good account in Hondros, pp. 163-169. See too: Myers, Chapter 16, far more decent and generous than is perhaps required under the circumstances (as is his account in Auty and Clogg, The Andarte Delegation to Cairo: August 1943, pp. 147-166; see n. 33 supra) and the magisterial review of the whole debacle by Woodhouse, Summer 1943: The Critical Months, in Auty and Clogg, pp. 119-146.40

were going to force the king on Greece after the war. But the British were supplying much of the resistance with material and money. So ELAS and its leaders were restrained, so to speak, at least until the Italians dropped out of the war. At that time EAM/ELAS got most of their equipment and supplies, by hook and by crook, and this fortuitous bounty gave it a good deal of freedom41 -- but not enough to operate without A lot of controversy surrounds this meeting, most of which was caused by Leeper,42 the support of the AMM and the BLOs who still held the purse strings and had the contacts outside Greece. Until the very end, in fact, EAM/ELAS sought to maintain ties with the Allies in some way while retaining its freedom of action. That this is true EAM/ELAS demonstrated later during the Dekemvriana when it restrained its ghters for as long as possible from shooting at British troops. ! The king was a man of limited intellect and very stubborn43. He wanted back. He refused any kind of compromise until late December, 1944 when Churchill met for the rst time and nally agreed to install Archbishop Damaskinos as Regent and verbally forced the king to accept a fait accompli. When Zervas at long last showed his true colors and came out in favor of the king (and lost support in Greece and among the Greek soldiers in the Near East), George was the more convinced of his position44 . The

On the Italian surrender see Mazower, Chapter 14; Myers, pp. 266-268; Woodhouse in Auty and Clogg, pp. 245-246.41

See the detailed and sober account by Clogg, The Foreign Ofce, SOE, and the Greek Resistance, in Anglo-Greek Attitudes, pp. 90-100, with references. There is also a good account in Hondros, pp. 163-169. See too: Myers, Chapter 16, far more decent and generous than is perhaps required under the circumstances (as is his account in Auty and Clogg, The Andarte Delegation to Cairo: August 1943, pp. 147-166; see n. 33 supra) and the magisterial review of the whole debacle by Woodhouse, Summer 1943: The Critical Months, in Auty and Clogg, pp. 119-146.42

Everybody who has written on this period has an opinion of George II. Two British documents are printed by Clogg, Greece, pp. 159-162-- both positive, of course-Mazower, p. 98; Hondros, Chapter 1 and passim. Woodhouse, Struggle, p. 73, partially quotes the king"s statement of 8 November 1943: ...when the desired moment of liberation of our country comes, I will examine afresh the question of the date of my return to Greece, in agreement with the Government, in the light of the prevailing political and military conditions. The phrase in agreement with the Government was added by Tsouderos; take it away and the real meaning of the statement is clear. Barker devotes some space to the king"s character and cites the British Minister of State in Cairo as writing of the king"s intense blindness which one might suppose to have been an inheritance from the Stuart family. (p. 155)43

On this volte-face by Zervas see Woodhouse, Struggle, pp. 37-38, Clogg, AngloGreek Attitudes, p. 85; Hondros, pp. 135-136.44

FO, SOE, and the rest of the British were also delighted45. George"s brother, Paul, and Paul"s wife Frederika (a grand-daughter of Kaiser Wilhelm and a former member of a Nazi Bund) were both prominent in the rallies and meetings of Metaxas" various social action and athletic groups (some of which actually did good), as were two of their children, Irini and Konstantinos46 . The whole lot of them were compromised and bigoted, and many Greeks, Americans and British knew it. The king in fact had missed his one great chance at national reconciliation when, after Metaxas" death, he failed to bring the country together or to leave it with dignity. But the FO plugged on, railing at the communists, claiming that good old Uncle Joe was behind ELAS/EAM, and nally that the only government t for Greeks was a constitutional monarchy 47. The Greeks required a Constitutional Monarchy to govern themselves but the Albanians and Yugoslavs did not? George had long ago in 1936 made a mockery of the very idea of a #constitutional" monarchy, and in fact had only restored the awed and superseded constitution of 1912 in February, 1942, and then only under pressure. The constitutional question is complex but so integrated into the actual events of the resistance that it is Myers devotes a chapter (12) to the formation of the #National Bands", pp. 187-201, the negotiations for which may be called Byzantine. On the reaction of the Whitehall mandarins to Zervas" letter to the king, see amongst others Clogg, Anglo-Greek Attitudes, pp. 86-87.45

The subtitle to Petrakis" book is Dictatorship and Propaganda in Greece, and her references to the participation of George"s brother"s family are passim.46

Information concerning deliberations between the Balkan communist parties [i.e. in 1944-1945] was scanty and fragmentary, leaving the impression that Balkan communism should be treated as a monolithic world with no internal strife and conict. Such a view led to another received wisdom: that every Balkan initiative was instigated by Stalin, who, in turn, seemed to entertain predatory aspirations regarding an outlet to #warm waters". As a result a bleak prospect haunted the Foreign Ofce: Slavdom, with its headquarters in Moscow, had been concocting the destruction of Greece, posing a grave danger to British communications in the eastern Mediterranean basin. So Livanios (p. 173) sums up the the view of Southeastern Europe from Whitehall. It seems dead accurate. Pierson Dixon (of the Southern Department) wrote to Henry Hopkinson 9 September 1942 (draft letter, cited by Clogg, Anglo-Greek Attitudes, pp. 157-158): There is no question of imposing the King on the Greek people by British bayonets. At the same time, we owe the King a great deal for holding the nation together at the time of the German attack, and it would probably suit British interests best that he should return to his throne after the war. Furthermore, it is generally agreed that a liberal constitutional monarchy is the regime which best suits the modern Greeks and that the peculiar demagogic Greek temperament is not ideal for democracy in its most advanced form. I see no reason to dilate upon the extraordinary number of presuppositions and misapprehensions that this most patronizing of statements contains and in such an abbreviated text no less. On this issue see Barker, p. 10, whose long parenthetical paragraph provides a succinct summary of British and Churchillian thinking on the (non)restoration of pre-war monarchies.47

impossible to separate it out and treat it as a subject in itself. Perhaps no other single fact brings into focus the disintegration and consequent viciousness of the long-standing political schism between Republicans and Monarchists48 . As for George himself Churchill was adamant on his return as the #legitimate" ruler of Greece 49. In this Woodhouse was the key man as far as the FO was concerned, I believe. So came about the Civil War that every independent observer and most British in Greece predicted if the king returned -- in fact there were three of them, the bloodiest and longest of which was the last and began not only after king George II had returned but was dead. ! Richard Clogg, the current British doyen of Modern Greek studies, wrote in his Introduction to a new edition of Woodhouse"s The Struggle for Greece 1941-1949 (2002) It is difcult to conceive of circumstances arising in the future in which a nonGreek would ever play such a critical role in Greek affairs as C.M. Woodhouse did between 1942 and 1944. Not only did he help to shape the history of Greece at one of the most critical junctures in its independent history, but he also made a major contribution to the historiography of the country.(p. xxiv) So who was he? Some years ago I read his autobiography, Something Ventured, and what a curious document that is. There are, I believe, no more than a half dozen mentions of his father and three of his mother; life, as he tells it, only began for him in Oxford, and really only after the beginning of the war. But after the war, when he decided to go into politics, he gives himself away: he found he had to choose between the Conservatives and Labour. Here"s what he says: The guiding light for Conservatives was freedom, while for the Labour Party it was compassion. Freedom proved a sounder basis in practice, for compassion could easily lead to dictatorial socialism... (Something Ventured, p. 138)The tension in his position arises when these sympathies are placed against his statements respecting his activities in Greece while with SOE. Woodhouse"s perception48

For a right-wing view, see Rigopoulos, p. 172ff

#Legitimate is a favorite word of the monarchists: see, e.g. Rigopoulos, p. 48, Gerolymatos, p. 161: The underlying factor inuencing British foreign policy was that the Greek monarchy represented legitimacy; a variant, #lawfully constituted", Smith p. 255, alii alia. Churchill could be very reasonable on the subject-- see Gerolymatos, p. 161-- but there"s no doubt whatsoever that his heart and mind were with the king: see ibid., p. 165: ...SOE should always veer in the direction of groups willing to support the King and Government and furthermore impress on such other groups as may be antimonarchical the fact that the King and the Government enjoys the fullest support of HMG Government. (Churchill to SOE, April, 1943) See below , note 41 on Albania. E.D. Smith has produced the worst and most dangerous book on this period in my experience. I cannot take the time here to document its travesties of fact and its defamation of person and character (EAM/ELAS men under Aris are ...hunting down policemen and members of the Security Battalions, the so-called traitors...) Throughout his book it is taken for granted that the Royal Hellenic Government is the only legitimate government in Greece; in believing this Smith fails completely to understand and consequently falsies the political situation in Greece during the occupation and its aftermath.49

of his status in Greece by Greeks was: Every left-wing Greek #knew for a fact" that I had been sent to Greece in 1942 not to organize resistance but to undermine the #people"s struggle" of EAM as an agent of British imperialism, which meant the Foreign Ofce, the Intelligence Service and the City. (Something Ventured, p. 137) This is both overstatement and understatement, and I hope to make that clear. Woodhouse claimed later that: I had attered myself that Myers and I between us were on the right course to avert a civil was in Greece, until the Foreign Ofce wrecked our progress by insisting that SOE should sack Myers. (Something Ventured, p. 101) This is a possible scenario, but since Woodhouse took over from Myers there"s a slight (but obvious) problem that cannot be ignored. ! Woodhouse landed on the side of a mountain in central Greece on a cold, wet night; he immediately conversed with a shepherd, organized and hid himself and those others who turned up or whom he found. Shortly thereafter he walked across occupied Greece alone. In Cairo he had spoken to Panaghiotis Kanellopoulos, a prominent Greek politician (who had just barely escaped from Greece, see n. 21, and who opposed the king), before he left for Greece. He claims that he knew nothing about the Greek political scene when he hit the soil of Greece, and though it is certain that the other members of the #Harling" mission were utterly ignorant of Greek politics, it is not altogether clear to me what he spoke to Kanellopoulos about if not that. Moreover, Woodhouse was a junior ofcer at the time. How is it he could contrive to speak with a bigwig like Kanellopoulos, even in the more casual world of Cairo?50 Moreover, as far as I can ascertain Kanellopoulos was not uent in English, so they had to communicate in Greek. Even after the war he and Kanellopoulos communicated in Greek, or so it would appear (Something Ventured, p. 174) Nowhere in his putative autobiography is there any indication of any connection with Greece prior to WWII (a Battle of Navarino stamp?, Something Ventured, p.174). Americans and Greeks in Greece practically to a man believed that he had personal interests in Greece 51; logically his Greek had been learnt young. Whatever else sessions in Oxford with a tutor in modern Greek for a year were not going to teach him enough to communicate freely and easily with a Greek shepherd on a mountainside in the middle of a freezing night in occupied Greece.

. Rigopoulos describes breaches of hierarchical formality among the members of the Greek community in exile in Cairo (p. 170) that allowed him to meet with Tsouderos so easily. But the Woodhouse-Kanellopoulos-Pirie meeting is quite a different matter; and the formalities of hierarchy were never dispensed with by the British in Egypt or anywhere else.50

Gerolymatos discusses his meeting with Kanellopoulos and makes some of these points, p. 145; he notes too that Ian Pirie, then head of the Greek section of SOE, was also present. (Pirie was recalled by Lord Selborne in late 1942 on the grounds that he was anti-monarchist; see Barker, p. 156.) See the letter of R.L. Wolff to W.L. Langer in Clogg, Greece 1940-1949, pp. 177-178. The statement His [i.e. Woodhouse"s] family is said to possess large interests in Greece. is atly denied by Clogg (note 7, ad loc.) and Woodhouse.51

Woodhouse is an enigma. He was acknowledged by the members of #Harling" to be the resident political expert, but you wouldn"t know it from him52. ! I feel certain that the Greeks in the resistance or just living in Greece during the war and the Americans were right. From the beginning the British intended to bring back the king and his government53 . Once the resistance became directly associated with the KKE everything was done to undermine EAM/ELAS just short of outright rejection. When in 1944 EAM/ELAS set up a government, PEEA, in northern Greece, the monarchy and the #government" in Cairo (not to mention the FO and SOE) became apoplectic and tried in every way to discredit it54. But EAM/ELAS had revolutionized the countryside. It had established courts, collected taxes, provided police, administered medical services, set up schools, and above all brought women and girls into every facet of governance and services. It was far from perfect, and all too often extremely brutal55 , but it had fought the common enemy and done so bravely 56. The transformation of ELAS into the National Democratic Army that fought the long civil war from 1946 to 1949 was an easy and logical result of the return of the king. The USA got to clean up after the British-- because it was so scared of Soviet communism. Now the messenger from the Athens [wireless] set arrived and conferred with Harry and Chris. Chris was the expert on Greek politics and certainly most able. On him fell all the more delicate tasks of diplomacy, and as politics were the mainstay of such Greek resistance as existed, he had a number of these tasks. Hamson, p. 80, evidently written after their jump into Greece but before the blowing of the Gorgopotamos bridge.52

There is a delicate analysis of British vocabulary to be found in R.L. Wolff"s abbreviated letter of 8 July 1944: see Clogg, Greece 1940-1949, p. 176. The nadir of British semantic sophistry is to be found in Smith"s book (see supra, n. 48).53

One of the more interesting contemporary comments about PEEA on the British side can be found in Hammond, pp. 132-135 and 144-146. Hammond was a determined critic of EAM/ELAS, but his assessment of the creation of PEEA is very fair.54

Stathis N. Kalyvas, in Mazower, After the War, published a long article, Red Terror: Leftist Violence during the Occupation, (pp. 142-183) which helps a great deal to understand the feelings of the Greek on the street towards EAM/ELAS and the OPLA organization. To the outsider, the intrusion of family feuds and of revenge in the battle against the German occupiers in the Argolid is very disturbing, but well-documented elsewhere in Greece and Albania. See also in the same volume Mazower"s Three forms of political justice: Greece, 1944-1945.55

Unlike Tito"s Partisans, however, EAM/ELAS had not fought set battles involving large numbers of troops against the Germans. This point is briey made by Seton-Watson in Auty and Clogg, p. 293 and can be veried by the record. Tempo"s (Svetozar Vukmanovi$) activities to galvanize the KKE into full-scale operations against the Germans later in the war put the Greeks in an impossible situation: the British were fully supporting Tito by that time while giving less and less to EAM/ELAS: Barker, p. 190. On the questions of Macedonians living in Greece and the tensions between EAM/ELAS and YCP see Barker, pp.197-103.56

! The irony is that Stalin was uninterested in Greece and the KKE. He had given up on the country during the war and remained very cool to any proposals from the KKE after the war, in particular refusing to send the Red Army into Greece in September, 1944 (and ever after keeping the KKE at arms length: see Livanios, p. 139) . Churchill and Stalin had carved up Southeastern Europe between themselves. The KKE was not told 57. The KKE made one tactical error after another, most egregiously when it wafed on the creation of an independent Macedonian state58. In itself such a proposal Barker, p. 139, cites a particularly direct statement Molotov made in April, 1943, in which he virtually comes right out and says that Russia has no interest in internal Greek affairs. See Woodhouse, Struggle, pp. 85-86, 92-93; Clogg, The Greek Government in Exile, in Anglo-Greek Attitudes, pp. 163-164. As Clogg points out not only was the KKE ignored but so was the Greek #government" and the king. Tito was not very happy either: see F. Maclean and F. Deakin, in Auty and Clogg, pp. 246-247. (Churchill"s sophistry about this #deal" is pathetic.) Interestingly, Mark Wheeler, in Seaman, p. 107, describes a British mission to Moscow in which something like a draft treaty (later signed but never observed) was negotiated with respect to resistance activities that included a geographical distribution of responsibilities bearing a startling resemblance to Churchill"s proposal. The #Percentages Agreement" turns up like a bad penny continuously in Part II of Livanios" book wherein the author makes very clear that except for Greece it was meaningless: seems plausible to suggest that Stalin did not consider Greece to fall within his sphere of inuence, a fact clearly shown in the -cynical but effective-- Percentages Agreement. In contrast to his Greek policy, Stalin"s Balkan objectives appeared to be much more obscure. (p. 173) The suspicion arises that Churchill made this wholly cynical deal only to retain Britain"s hold on Greece after the war. Barker devotes a section of her book to this subject, pp. 140-147. On Britain"s Mediterranean strategy during 1943 and its consequences, see Barker, p. 125: the contrast between American and British policy towards Southeastern Europe is made most clear. British and European readers should remember that for Americans there was no theater of war in Southeastern Europe of any signicance.57

There are many sides to this question. For the Yugoslavs, see Woodhouse, Struggle, 159-161(also 66-68); for Bulgaria and Yugoslavia, pp. 188-189; for all the parties involved and Tito"s split with Moscow, pp. 252-254. I discuss Albania and Yugoslavia in Endnote 2, infra. See too Minehan, What was the Problem in Greece?, in Carabott and Skas, pp. 44-45 and p. 53. The document in which the KKE tried to dissociate itself from its own stated policy is reprinted in Clogg, Greece 1940-1949, p. 213 (dated 7 March 1949). Livanios" book takes up this question in detail, Chapters 5-7. For the British, the unwavering concern was for Greece (and Bulgaria) to retain their pre-war boundaries and to thwart at all costs a Pan-Slav union controlled by Tito"s Yugoslavia and incorporating all of the south Slavs, including #Macedonia" as well as any recognition of a Macedonian people: In the preceding decades the Balkan specialists of the Central Department [i.e. of the FO] were of the view that the #Macedo-Slavs" had no national consciousness whatsoever. During the 1940s the Foreign Ofce continued to approach that question with extreme caution, mainly due to their anxiety to preserve the territorial integrity of Greece. (Livanios, 9. 165)58

revealed the extreme schizophrenia of the KKE. It had always been strongest in Macedonia, especially amongst the tobacco workers (whence came many high-ranking KKE members), and since many of these people were Macedonian or Bulgarian and not ethnic Greek, the KKE found itself pulled between Greek nationalism and Macedonian irredentism. To square this circle proved impossible for the KKE, and every attempt to address it pulled it further into self-contradiction and disrepute59. In this debilitating confusion, the KKE was caught with its pants down when Tito broke with Stalin. Yet it dutifully continued to support Stalin, whereupon Tito closed the Yugoslav border to the Greeks. That act led to the end of the civil war, though in fact it had already been lost when the leader of the KKE Zachariades (who had returned to Greece after liberation) had ousted Markos Vaphiadis as general and decided to ght a regular war of set battles instead of a guerilla war that had been going on for years and was the only sort of war ghtable by his men. The KKE was beaten on the eld, but it had a lot of help behind the lines60. ! Over the years I"ve come to mistrust the British in Southeastern Europe in general and Greece in particular; as for the Near East my lack of faith is almost complete. My father, a good leftist of the time, worked with UNRRA for most of WWII; he was in Greece in November, 1944 and subsequently evacuated after the Dekemvriana. His brownie black and white photographs, now lost, and his stories were horric for me to see and hear. And he was scathing on the British military and political authorities. Yet, for most of my life I"ve accepted the British account of what happened in Greece during the 1940s; now I am absolutely convinced that I was wrong and my father and so many others right. I do not believe Greece would have been a better country or better off under the Communists of the KKE, but I do believe that there were other ways for the country to go. The absolute prerequisite, however, was not within the moral or ethical

There is a very precise notice in Barker (p. 163) in which she quotes Richard Casey, Minister of State in Cairo, in a telegram to Churchill wherein he asks for Churchill"s personal views on the situation in the Balkans. What makes her paragraph so piquant is the explicitness of his analysis of the British dilemma in Southeastern Europe. The KKE and the British had a not dissimilar problem. In her subsequent discussion (pp. 166-168) she recounts just how Eden posed this abnormal circumstance to Churchill.59

Woodhouse in Struggle is at his best on the failure of the SU to offer any support to the KKE and EAM/ELAS, even after they were welded together as the National Democratic Army. See Struggle, pp. 284-289, but really passim. In fact, the SU for much of the war could offer the resistance in Yugoslavia, Albania, and Greece very little in the way of men and material. The arrival in Albania in August, 1944 of a Soviet mission (of two men, headed by a Major Ivanov)) was unexpected but well-received; but it embraced nothing other than words. See Bailey, pp. 285-286.60

reach of the British. Had the British junked the king from the beginning and worked with the communist resistance61, all would have been different, and not of necessity worse. ! Who were the real losers? Greece was left in 1950 desolate. Much of it was still that way when I rst went to Greece as a young student in 1961. It was not merely that the economy had been eviscerated; that could have been ameliorated or even obviated had the Americans worked harder at ridding the country of the corruption of a venal, selsh upper class. More the loss of self-esteem, of pride, and of a sense of the future seemed to debilitate the country. Post-war Greece experienced a mass movement of people, especially the young, from the countryside to Athens/Piraeus and Thessalonike. And what did these people do? They found work as best they could, of course, but they also formed the basis for a strong, dedicated left wing political activism. The destruction of an organized labor movement (by Metaxas and the occupation) in a country that had little heavy industry (and that controlled by a very few) and a large agricultural labor group that was destined to migrate to the cities 62 for jobs and a future was perpetuated by the British and, later, the Americans. The people themselves had to rectify this grievous wrong. The political resurgence and even success of the center-left after the war attests to the need workingmen (and women: between the war and EAM/ELAS they were now an essential part of the economy) felt for protection from the oligarchy that

And that could have been done. The policy of His Majesty"s Government for promoting and organising resistance to the Axis in Albania is to support all anti-Axis element, wherever they may be, subject to the availability of aircraft and other resources, provided always that they continue to combat the Axis actively and wholeheartedly. SOE directive to Brigadier E. F. Davies, October, 1943; cited by Bailey, p. 92. In Yugoslavia in January, 1944, the British broke with Mihailovi$: The British were committing themselves to a powerful, communist-led guerrilla movement bent on being in the driving seat politically when the war was over; they were also abandoning a rival, royalist party with which they had associated for over two years. (Bailey, p. 130) Gerolymatos (p. 161) asks whether HMG had any choice other than to support the king and his #government-in-exile": ...[they] were the internationally accepted representatives of the Greek state. Consequently, British denial of the legality of the Greek government would have given some credibility to the puppet regime in Athens. I believe this nonsense, and certainly events in Albania and Yugoslavia, not to mention the hostility of the Greeks to their own regime, show how little the Tsolakoglou/Logothetopoulos/Rallis #governments" mattered to anybody in Athens or anywhere else. Moreover the essential point is that what came out of Occupied Greece was so consistently hostile to the Royal Hellenic Government and the king, that the FO and the Greek government did everything it could to suppress that reality; see Taylor in Auty and Clogg, p. 264.61

. Or to Western Europe or the U.S. When my wife and I were leaving Greece in May, 1962 we spent much time on deck with a mass of young men, all of whom were going to Belgium to work in the coal mines. We asked why they were going. &'( )* +,-.*/0)0; 10/ 230' 405)( 6),/ 744.8.. That is the story of Modern Greece and the Greek diaspora.62

controlled Greece for so long before and after the war63 . It was the Greeks who suffered for the obsessions of Churchill and his minions64 in Whitehall. Woodhouse, I"m convinced, was the man they put their trust in, and he performed very well. ! The British did refuse to support king Zog in Albania and worked with Enver Hoxha and his communists through SOE65. It is, however, questionable whether any cohesive analogy can be drawn between these two countries or between them and Yugoslavia. In 1989 the Reconciliation law was passed. At the same time 17,500,000 les of people on the left were burned. Close, p. 274 (in Carabott and Skas), quotes a reporter"s comment that locked away were ...the whole democratic movement of the town, which for sixty long years had struggled against established authorities for the attainment of trade union rights. Full discussion, pp. 272-275. Woodhouse has some pertinent observations on the position of the trade unions in 1946, but for the later history of the union (non)movement see Wittner"s Chapter 7, #Taming the Greek Labor Movement 1947-1949." This chapter, as well as the whole book, make hard reading for Americans, but it is pleasure to afrm that it was written by an American. One key issue was the unionization of the workers associated with the seaports at Piraeus, Thessalonike, Patras, and Kalamata, as well as the tobacco workers in Kavala and Macedonia and Thrace in general. Indeed it was the rioting of these workers that gave so much impetus to the king"s abrogation of legal government in 1936.63

This responsibility was perceived by some members of SOE. In Albania David Keswick told Gubbins that we may well have created just such another situation in other Balkan countries-- an especially close parallel is Greece-- and may well have fomented an acute civil war without in any way increasing the discomture of the enemy-- if anything on the contrary. (Colonel D. Keswick to Major General C. Gubbins, 25 February 1944; cited by Bailey, p. 154) Keswick later that year returned to the subject, again writing to Gubbins: Our political unwisdom has got us into the most unholy mess in the Balkans...We do not want bigger and better civil wars, and this eternal tinkering with both sides in order to match them up one against the other will in my opinion prove disastrous. (Colonel D. Keswick to General C. Gubbins, 8 July 1944; cited by Bailey, p. 266) Keswick was proven right in Greece; in Albania and Yugoslavia actual civil war was brief. Livanios (pp.112-113) is very sharp on British (that is, FO) policy: British wartime planning regarding the future of the Balkans, apart from the customary Great Power arrogance [see too p. 162] which enabled Balliol [the reference is to pp. 88, n.26 and especially 109] to make and unmake frontiers, and to transfer regions from one federal unit to the other at a stroke of a pen, suffered from two fundamental weaknesses. First, the assumption, never stated, but implicitly accepted, that dispassionate reason, as understood in London, would be the only force which would dictate the foreign conduct of the countries concerned. Secondly, the hidden hope that Russia would possibly be prepared to extend her support to a scheme that was ultimately directed against her. The latter point dealt British plans a deadly blow; but it is beyond doubt , that, in the long run, the former would have done the same.64 65

See Bailey, pp. 92, 130, 140, 318-319.

David Keswick (cited in Bailey, p.153), Director of Mediterranean Operations (of SOE) likened the #pattern of disunity" in Albania to that seen in Yugoslavia and Greece. But in Greece the SOE did not see eye to eye with Churchill, the FO and even some SOE administrators, and in this case the results were disastrous. As Bailey (p. 317) puts it: Only where Greece was concerned were the British prepared to divert forces from the nal battle against the Germans in order to prevent a communist coup. Moreover, in the division of Southeastern Europe that Churchill made with Stalin no mention of Albania is made. Albanian security of boundaries was not guaranteed by the British or the Allies66 (see n. 69 and Barker, pp. 177-179); Greece, which had claims to Southern Albania, was promised nothing also. (In the event Greece only obtained the Dodecanese after the war.) King Zog had long been resident in England and was hardly given a thought with respect to the resistance especially since his support inside the country was slight and in the south (a.k.a. Northern Epirus, almost as sensitive to the Greeks as Kosovo is to the Albanians and the main base of LNC"s power). What happened in Albania is not comparable to what happened in Greece (on this, see Endnote 2 infra), where a good number of royalist ofcers had come out during the April, 1941 collapse and very many Venezilists had ended up joining the monarchists when the political position of EAM/ ELAS had become clear. ! It is a fact that most Greeks did not like and even feared the communists, long before but especially after the events of December, 1944 which involved, among other things, the killing of many hostages by ELAS, most of whom were middle-class, basically plain people, not collaborators or #monarcho-fascists", as the KKE was wont to describe them. The rebels failed because the mass of the Greek people was against them (Woodhouse, Struggle, p.233) EAM/ELAS was not a monolithic Stalinist organization if only because most of its ghting men and women were not communists and had no intention of supporting a post-war communist government. The National Democratic Army, however, which fought the Civil War (1947-49), was most certainly a Stalinist communist revolutionary organization, and everybody knew as much. ! The creation of SOE constituted a political act. Astonishingly there appears to have been no recognition that political circumstances, necessities, and/or desires dictate the formation of armies. To achieve a separation of the military from the political requires a discipline on both sides that is often lacking. In my own lifetime in the USA I have watched military personnel engage in political activity with varying degrees of success, but almost never when they are actually serving in the military. To recall General MacArthur in Korea and Colonel North in Central America is sufcient. Yet both these men were placed by their political leaders in ambiguous positions which gave them the opportunity to act as they did. How could an SOE be formed to go clandestinely into occupied (and unoccupied) countries in a time of war and be expected to know when and how to act politically or apolitically? And in Southeastern Europe of all places? Of This was a major sticking point for both the LNC and BK and is a recurrent topic in Bailey"s book. The issue had been neatly confused by the Germans who incorporated most of Kosovo into Albania for administrative purposes during the occupation (with the BK controlling the government). As Barker (p. 13) puts it: The British plan for #a Balkan bloc" was undermined from the start by the territorial disputes of the area... On all this see Endnote 2.66

the characters in this paper Myers is the one person who performed his duty as a military man as far removed from politics as is humanely possible. His eyes were open; he told the truth as he saw it; and he killed the enemy and destroyed their materiel. That it was Whitehall and the FO and a Leeper that caused him to be removed reveals the confusion, suspicion and ignorance that infected HMG for the entire war. Churchill quite literally created SOE by amalgamating three separate quasi-military/quasi-political organizations, and he did so, I believe, without thinking through what he was doing. Indeed PWE had to be organized to handle #political warfare" to sanitize SOE"s brief. (And that"s another story, well told by Barnett.) SOE was yet another manifestation of Churchillian romanticism. One might say that its achievement in Southeastern Europe was a communist Yugoslavia, Romania, Hungary, Bulgaria, and Albania, and in Greece a vicious monarchy. All lasted too long and blighted the lives of too many. But these failings here hyperbolically ascribed to SOE must be placed at the door of a Churchillian HMG and its contempt for the dictum that war is an extension of politics. The policies adopted by HMG were ad hoc (and propter hoc), as Barker so clearly enunciates (p.9): The story of Britain"s relations with South-East Europe during the Second World War was for the most part a story of last-minute improvisation and the undertaking of commitments without the resources to full [sic] them. Policies, if that is the right name for them, were largely dictated by negative outside factors: rst, fear of annoying Mussolini, then fear of provoking Hitler prematurely, after that fear of irritating Stalin; there was later the wish to avoid trouble with nagging exiled governments. Positive policies, when committed to paper, were often documents designed to justify or defend actions already taken for urgent short-term reasons, against attack by critics or opponents either inside the British War Cabinet or within the anti-Hitler alliance. ! Finally, I don"t like anti-Americanism; I know where it comes from and have some sympathies with it. But when taken to an extreme I reckon it the other person"s problem, not mine. To revile the USA for the post-war ills of Greece is a travesty of reason and analysis. Wittner has detailed with scholarly care the powerful case against American intervention. Americans do not have much to be proud of. Very slowly in Greece attitudes have been changing with the pace picking up since 1980 as a younger generation of scholars has come into its own, and the 1940s are no longer a source of instant contention. Someday, I"d like to see people in Greece recognize that what happened to their country was their own responsibility, but not necessarily the consequence of their own decisions or predilections. Most of all, I"d like to see the cause of the disastrous return of the king put where it belongs. The monarchy lasted until 1967 when the colonels" coup drove the playboy Konstantine out forever. The one

law passed by the colonels that was retained by the restored Republic in 1974 was that outlawing the monarchy 67.

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I am going to give the last word to Harry Fultz, OSS" Albanian ofcer: We should not be surprised if later we nd that these people have no love left for the Allies. [We] cannot hope to promote condence if we state that we favor and help those who ght [the Germans] and at the same time do things which cause injury to those who ght the Germans. We should not expect to have people believe us if we state that we will not meddle in the internal affairs of a country if at the same time we try to manipulate events to achieve predetermined results. (H.T. Fultz to P. Adams, 24 February 1944; cited by Bailey, p. 319).67









Only in reading Woodhouse"s Something Ventured (pp. 22-23) did I discover that Eddie Myers was Jewish; I"ve only seen that in print this one time. He was not one of us, as the English would say. Woodhouse on the other hand was: he was to the manor born-he inherited his father"s title-- as were the FO people. Robert Carver, in a letter to the TLS (25 July 2008) relates an apposite story from Norman Lewis. When I interviewed Lewis at his home in Essex for the #Scotsman" circa 1997, he was much more precise and vehement about his looks: #I have always been mistaken for a Jew throughout my life-- much to my disadvantage", he told me. #Regardez ce type-l-- typiquement juif", he overheard a woman refer to him in a Belgian nightclub in the 1930s. #It was why I was never given a commission in the British Army in the Second War", he went on to explain, something he touched on obliquely in both his autobiography and in Naples "44. Leeper, a really sinister guy, was oddly enough Australian. But then so is Murdoch, come to think of it. In the corpus of memoirs by the SOE people in Greece, Denys Hamson"s We Fell among Greeks is by far the most idiosyncratic, interesting and revealing. To this day I do not understand why the FO or the military allowed it to be published. But then they probably gured it would be ignored, as it is for the most part.







! It has been the contention of this paper that the long-term interests of the FO, Churchill, and SOE London and Cairo were realized when George II returned to Greece after WWII and his brother, Paul, succeeded him when he died shortly thereafter. I also argued that the English pro-monarchy group found its SOE man in Greece in C. M. Woodhouse, who proved to be a very effective head of the AMM and well-deserving of the accolades he received, but who was miraculously able to act without stirring up a political hornet"s nest in London or anywhere else. That he was pushed aside at the time of liberation and treated as redundant is merely the obvious manifestation of what the regular British military and Whitehall really thought of SOE and its operatives. ! The tendency to treat Southeastern Europe as something of a unied geopolitical unit seems to have stuck right up to contemporary times. The Balkans is xed in the minds of most Western Europeans and North Americans as a specic term encompassing not only a geographic area but also, and more importantly, a mentality 68 . I suspect it is this very conuence of the physical and intellectual that has allowed ne scholars to draw extensive comparisons between what happened in occupied Greece and in Albania and Yugoslavia.

There is an excellent book on this subject: Todorova, Maria N. Imagining the Balkans. New York: Oxford U.P., 1997. Sadly, Livanios is prone to employ the usual stereotypes: e.g. typically Balkan coup (p. 117).68

! I briey discussed this matter with regard to Albania in my essay, but I think that the topic needs more elucidation than I chose to give it; and since Greece and Yugoslavia are so frequently thought of together in histories of the resistance in Southeastern Europe and, moreover, since Yugoslavia plays a critical role in the history of the 1947-1949 Greek civil war, its circumstances require discussion as well. ! That Greece lacked an Enver Hoxha or a Tito requires no real elaboration. Of the many higher-ups in the KKE, including Yioryos Siantos, Petros Roussos, Markos Vaphiades, Andreas Tzimas, Nikos Zachariades, Khrysa Khatzivasiliou to name but a few-- none had that quality of leadership necessary to bring order and discipline to a national resistance organization and to retain a rm grip on it over the long haul69 . Indeed the failure of the KKE to nd a viable, charismatic substitute for (a dull, doctrinaire and compromised) Zachariades during the war remains a most damning fact of its lack of mass appeal. An observer from the outside has a great deal of difculty understanding how Zachariades could return to Greece after four years in Dachau and pick up right where he left off. Greece in 1945 was a very different country than that in 1940, especially as it had been transformed by EAM/ELAS/KKE. Zarchariades should have been revered (perhaps) but irrelevant. ! More than a leader, however, separates Greece from Albania and Yugoslavia, and with the opening of most of the existing SOE les there is now an ongoing reassessment of both the position of SOE in the latter two countries and their #national" resistance groups. Roderick Bailey"s new book on Albania represents one signicant beginning of this scholarly enterprise which eventually ought to cover not only the three occupied countries but also Bulgaria, Romania, and Hungary 70. ! Albania as a nation came out of the two Balkan Wars (1912-1913), though to describe it simply as a creation of the Great Powers neglects the very real existence of an Albanian language and people. Albania had indeed previously supported the Ottoman Empire and wished to remain within it. But then, faced with the disintegration of Turkey in Europe consequent upon the Balkan Wars, it at rst tried to opt for the status of an autonomous state within the Empire; but nally, in December, 1912, the Great Powers recognized an independent Albania and, in 1913 after the second Balkan War (which lasted one month), xed its borders. The borders were a Solomonian compromise: Kosovo (then inhabited mainly by Albanians} was claimed by Serbia, and the northern border was xed to accommodate Montenegro and Serbia; in the south, however, the new state acquired Northern Epirus which Greece had claimed on ethnic


This point is well made by Woodhouse, Struggle, pp. 6-7, 18-20.

Seaman"s book contains essays from a symposium held at the Imperial War Museum in 1998; the authors have returned to their papers as originally given and brought them up to date by incorporating material from the recently released SOE les.70

grounds71 . During WWI the country was literally dismembered by its neighbors under various pretexts, but nally its prewar borders were conrmed after WWI in the Versailles peace treaty 72. These have caused problems for all concerned ever since. The government of Albania, if it can be called that, was #republican" until 1925 when Ahmet Bey Zogu (n Zogolli), who had suppressed a revolt (led by Bishop Fan Noli) of June, 1924 by invading the country, became president. A new constitution was brought into force, but in 1928 Zogu made himself king Zog, and Italy virtually ran the country 73. ! Yugoslavia as an independent unied state had a suitably complicated history which can only be alluded to here74. In December, 1918, the existence of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes was announced at which time it had no denitively settled borders. By 1920, without a shot being red, the borders of the new state had been established and the new country recognized by all the great powers, including Italy (which had secured Fiume/Trieste for itself). The political settlement, a constitutional monarchy with a strong centralized administration in Belgrade, was in fact a Serbian diktat, conrmed by a rump parliament (mainly Serbian) in June, 1921. The result of the constitutional wrangling was an insecurely unied state with a weak monarch and a uid

On these borders there exists now a large literature. For the south the map in Winnifrith, p. 196 (Number 6), shows the various proposals and their relation to the modern border; Winnifrith himself comments: The difculty of further advance [i.e. by the Greek army in 1940] suggests that the frontier of 1914 was a more sensible strategic line than that settled by the Great Powers. (p. 136) Kosovo has been in the news for the last fteen years or so. Luckily I am not required to discuss Macedonia in this context, but it is worth noting that in 1925 IMRO resolved on the creation of a Balkan Federation with an autonomous Macedonia, on the report of which William Erskine appended a note: An autonomous Macedonia state from Kavalla to Ochrid and from Uskub [Skopje: WE"s addition; is this not Tetovo?] to Salonika will one day be evolved. With the addition of Bulgaria a vast Slav state will exist. This will not be wholly to our advantage but clearly we can do nothing to prevent it. This quotation is taken from Livanios, p. 76; see also p. 50 (for Allied offers to Bulgaria during WW I). Greece had reason to be chary of Great Power ddling in Macedonia. Barker devotes a full chapter (15) to The British, the Balkan Communists and Macedonia (pp. 184- 203). As she says (p. 185): As for Macedonia, the word alone seemed to send a shudder down Foreign Ofce backs; at best Macedonia would be a lynch-pin in a South Slav union which they did not want; at worst it would threaten their protg, Greece, and so undermine British inuence.71

For the melancholy history of Albania during WWI see Jelavich, pp. 316-318, short but very clear. For Northern Epirus during the war, Winnifrith, pp. 130-132.72

On (Zogolli)/Zogu/Zog see Bernd Fischer, Perceptions and Reality in TwentiethCentury Albanian Military Prowress, in Albanian Identities, pp. 134-139. This story is succinctly discussed by Bailey, pp. 13-16.73

There are many histories in English of Yugoslavia; for my purposes, the general one included in the narrative of Jelavich, is more than adequate.74

political scene 75. King Peter II, a rather feckless young man with little experience, was declared of age and installed on the throne after the Yugoslav deance of Hitler on 27 March 1941 (in which Peter himself played a minor role). He soon escaped to London where he proved to be a difdent and difcult subject for proper English training76. The government which succeeded his overthrow, however, did not revoke the recently made pact with Germany and gave no help to Greece in its struggle with Italy. General Du9an Simovi$ and his Foreign Minister, Mom:ilo Nin:i$ continued to play ball with Hitler (see Barker, p. 93 and 104) who wasted no time assuaging his anger at the Yugoslavs by invading the country. ! Yugoslavia was overrun by the Germans in less than two weeks; the Italians, once the Greek army had been outanked by the German army in its invasion of Greece and had surrendered, tightly controlled Albania for as long as it was in the war. After the Italian capitulation in 1943, the Germans moved very quickly to occupy all of Albania to protect its supply lines to Thassalonike and the rest of Greece as well as its communications with northwestern Greece. As in Greece, the German army proved a good deal more efcient and brutal (though more liberal in granting some autonomy to local government) than the Italian occupation force, and the resistance in Albania was never very effective (even from April, 1941 to 1943). Yugoslavia was quite a different matter. ! Albania was denitively occupied by the Italians in August, 1939; king Zog ed to Greece and thence to London where he remained. As in Greece the king left behind no government and no instructions for resistance though he did have supporters in the north. Albania was left to the Italians to administer, but as the war caught up with the country, groups began to be formed (usually about a strong local leader) to combat the Italians. The Albanian resistance was composed basically of three groups: 1) men allied with Abbas Kupi that was in the (partially Catholic) north (of the Shkumbun River), 2) the Levicija Nacional lirimtar (LNC), led by Enver Hoxha and mainly in the south, and 3)

At the root of the problem of Yugoslavia"s defense strategy lay the Serb-Croat Problem. The voluntary union of independent Serbia with the Croats, Serbs, and Slovenes of the Austro-Hungarian empire in 1918 had saddled the new State with great difculties which only supreme political patience and exibility could have solved. Barker, p. 82: her subsequent discussion is well worth reading. I am not certain what she means by voluntary.75

For Peter"s personality, see Barker, p. 153-154. On Peter and the Yugoslav coup of 1941 see amongst others: Sweet-Escott in Auty and Clogg, p. 7. The #standard" history can be found in Barnett, p. 180, who also says: Thus the policy of Britain was, for a great part of the war, identied with the restoration of King Peter II and the voice of Britain was ineffectually devoted to urging a unity between irreconcilable elements. PWE also ran an RU, Y2 Shumadia, which was directed against the collaborationist government of Milan Nedi$ and was specically directed to Serbia and the citizens of Belgrade. (Barnett, p. 205) On prince Paul and his relations with Britain, see Barker, pp. 84-91.76

Balli Kombtar (BK), strongest in the Vlor region77 . Kupi was a royalist and loyal to Zog throughout the war; Hoxha was a Stalinist (as bets a leader of a party founded and controlled by the CPY; see Livanios, p. 145); the BK was non-royalist and nationalist. Put simply, the BK ended up a collaborationist group since for it the occupation by the Germans had in fact benetted the country and even expanded it so as to include Kosovo which the Germans had handed over to the BK to govern78 . Kupi"s group, never anywhere as large as he claimed it to be (ranging from 2,500 to 25,000), did not ght the Germans until the end of the occupation, and then only insignicantly 79. The LNC, later FNC (Fronti Nacional lirimtar), did not collaborate with the Germans to any great

For these groups see Bailey, pp. 61-65; Kupi was at rst on the LNC council but evidently broke away shortly after the arrival of the BLOs. But he was known to the British in 1940: see Bailey, pp. 21-22.77

The BK appears as a very sinister and dangerous (to the British) organization in the SOE reports: see Bailey, p. 100, etc. As for Kosovo Bailey says effectively Germany had minimised resistance by incorporating most of Kosovo into Albania and recognising Greater Albania"s independence. #The majority of Kosovars preferred a German occupation to a Serb, Kemp observed. #The Axis powers had at least united them with their fellow Albanians, whereas an Allied victory would, they feared, return them to Yugoslav rule." (p. 172)78

Kupi occupies a peculiar place in the history of British/SOE operations in Albania. As Barker puts it (p. 180)): It was never quite clear whether the main motive behind the British effort to mobilise Kupi was political or military, but on balance it seems to have been political. I would agree. She also cites (p. 181) a charming minute from Churchill to Eden regarding Kupi and LNC: ...let me have a note on this showing which side we are on. W.S.C. To which in 1944 no less Eden can reply: I still have some hope that we may be able to reconcile the two factions. Hope springs eternal. In Bailey"s book he appears passim since he was in Albania from the beginning of the occupation to the end of the war. But for the sad story of his dealings with the British and others, see Chapter 9: Colleagues in Conspiracy, which discusses in detail the pot-war claims made that SOE in Bari was a hot-bed of Commies, hence the rather shabby treatment of the Zogist Kupi. In mid-1944 the issue of continued British support for Kupi and his Nationalists was discussed; amongst other reasons given for continuing it the British Chiefs of Staff stated: ...our deception plan includes a notional assault on the Albanian coast. As long as this #idea" remained on the table, Kupi was not going to be dropped.79

degree and did ght them when it could do so in relative safety or when it had to80. Neither Kupi"s group nor the BK survive