November 4, 2015

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SPECIAL REPORT - There are reasons why Filis says the GENOCIDE of Greek Pontians never took place

By Marina Spanos
Editor in Chief HellasFrappe 

Famed philosopher George Santayana once said that "those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” Over the last one hundred years our world witnessed the Holocaust, countless wars and the genocide of millions of people. All these events noted above occurred in a short period proving that remembrance alone is not the issue, the aim is to stare at the root causes that led to these mass atrocities and raise awareness about them so that they will not be repeated.

As of today, the Greek Minister of Education Nikos Filis can be considered a persona non grata. During an interview on STAR channel late on Monday night, Filis refuted the occurrence of the GENOCIDE of the Greeks from Pontus which we all know involved the slaughtering of well over 350,000 thousand innocent men, women and children. He instead said that the butchering of the Greeks in the Black Sea region by brutal Ottoman Turks was simply a case of ethnic cleansing rather than genocide.
     "I said that as a historian, considering the positions of many historians and international relations experts. We made a distinction between bloody ethnic cleansing and genocide as a phenomenon. This does not mean that we do not recognize the blood, pain and everything that Pontic people have suffered due to the cruelty of Turks. But genocide, as a strictly scientific term, is something different," said Filis.
During the interview he noted that this was his personal opinion, because, as he so eloquently noted, he did not want to impose his personal opinion as a state policy. What a laugh. He thinks we are totally oblivious to history, as well as his party’s sins on this subject (which will be disclosed further below).

His opinion was obviously not received well, and many people took offense to his words and for good reason. So why is all of Greece so angry at him today? For one, his comments are aligned to those of the Turkish government which does not recognize any genocides (Greek, Armenian and Assyrian). Most importantly it is against Greek national interests.

What is worse is that there are already some reports circulating on the web today saying that he even did Ankara a diplomatic favor by saying this.

(If this fact alone does not ignite a nerve in you, then I really do not know what would. Personally I viewed it as a direct provocation and my nerves skyrocketed.)

In my opinion he repeats the views which have already been expressed by other neocon Greeks such as Maria Repoussi (former MP for DIMAR). Some may recall that a couple of years ago she attempted to make us believe that the massacre of Greeks in Asia Minor, or Smyrna, was nothing more than a gathering at a Turkish port. This scandalous view was even documented in school text books. Thankfully the textbooks stopped being circulated but her views and attempts to push her interpretations of history as truths never did. Not only did she provoke our sentiment in the past when she walked out of the Greek parliament when they held a moment of silence over the Greeks who perished in these genocides, but she has also proposed that Greeks forget about other historical events too!

An anti-Hellene by nature, Mrs. Repousi believes that Greeks should ignore commemorating the exodus of Missolonghi, they should also stop celebrating the Battle of Spetses (with the blowing up the Armata), totally ignore the events at Kougi and she also  believes that we should stop hailing the Revolutionary Flag of Agia Lavra when we commemorate Independence Day on March 25th.  This progressive neocon thinker, and pro-Turkey voice, says that all these commemorations and celebrations are "banal" and "nationalistically cheap", and adds that they provide nothing to our national expression as Greeks. (Read relevant story by clicking HERE)

Filis, just like Repoussi, forget that they both serve (served) the Greek Parliament of which has officially recognized this historical event as a GENOCIDE and  designated May 19 as an annual day of remembrance. Specifically, the decree was published in the Greek Government Gazette on March 8, 1994 and affirmed the genocide in the Pontus region of Asia Minor. A second decree followed affirming the genocide of Greeks in Asia Minor as a whole and designated September 14th as a day of commemoration. Both these laws were signed by the President of the Republic, however, they were not immediately ratified because of political interventions from (SURPRISE SURPRISE) SYRIZA's very own Avgi newspaper. (source Wikipedia )

Don't take my word for it, check out the information for yourself on Wikipedia: It notes that the SYRIZA Leftist newspaper "Avgi" had the initiative for freezing the application of this law. At the time, the subject became the center of a political debate between various Greek politicians, with the left being against it. The president of the left-ecologists coalition Synaspismos party Nikos Konstantopoulos and A. Elefantis, known for his books on the history of Greek communism, were some of the politicians who expressed their opposition to the decree. It should be noted that SYRIZA's previous title was Synaspismos.

Thankfully, not all Lefitsts agreed with their rhetoric. The non-parliamentary left-wing nationalist intellectual and author George Karabelias bitterly criticized Elefantis and others who opposed the recognition of genocide and called them "revisionist historians". He even accused the Greek main-stream left of a "distorted ideological evolution". He said that for the Greek left May 19 is a "day of amnesia". On its part, the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) has over the last decade adopted the term "Genocide of the Greeks of Pontus" in its official newspaper Rizospastis and since then it even participates in memorial events.

Therefore there is no room for excuses about so called "opinions" because we now know the stance that the SYRIZA party has had in the past on this very subject.

In any case, Filis and all of the SYRIZA party, have pledged an oath to respect the decisions of the Greek parliament. He should keep in mind that when he speaks he is not representing himself, his party's distorted ideological views, or the people who only voted for him, but he is instead representing the government of all of the Greek people (Pontian Greeks included).

As such, I decided that this would be another teachable moment, both for Repoussi and Filis, as well as all those who live in a make believe world that wants us to paint visions of sugar plums and rainbows when we refer to Turkey and its past crimes.

credit Wikipedia
     "According to various sources the Greek death toll in the Pontus region of Anatolia ranges from 300,000 to 360,000. Estimates for the death toll of Anatolian Greeks as a whole are significantly higher, a team of American researchers found in the early postwar period that the total number of Greeks killed may approach 900,000 people. Political scientist Adam Jones also suggests the figure of 750,000 casualties. Scholar Rudolph Rummel compiled various figures from several studies to estimate lower and higher bounds for the death toll between 1914 and 1923. His estimates ranged from 289,000 to 459,000 deaths in the Greek genocide throughout this period. According to the figures by the Greek government together with the Patriarchate, a total of one million people were estimated to be massacred. Source Wikipedia


According to Wikipedia, in December 2007 the International Association of Genocide Scholars (IAGS) passed a resolution (with an "overwhelming" majority) affirming that the 1914–23 campaign against Greeks who lived in the Black Sea region constituted GENOCIDE. Employing the term "Greek Genocide", it affirmed that this population of Greeks were subject to GENOCIDE alongside other groups, namely Armenians and Assyrians. The resolution was adopted on December 1, 2007 and the press release issued by the organization on December 16.

Greek communities began inhabiting Anatolia (Greek for “east”), otherwise referred to as the Asia Minor, since the 12th century BCE. Wikipedia notes that the Turks migrated into Anatolia over the first millennium CE and by the 14th century had established the Ottoman Empire.
     "The Pontic people lived in Turkey for well over 3000 years and are descendants of Greek colonists who arrived there long before the ancestors of present day Turks. The Turks, under the founder of modern Turkey, Kemal Ataturk, pursued a deliberate policy of "Turkey for the Turks." It was adopted against the backdrop of the Greek occupation of parts of Asia Minor as spelled out in the Treaty of Versailles. Its purpose was to rid Turkey of its Greek, Armenian and Assyrian Christians. The resulting Greek-Turkish War of 1919-1922 and the defeat of the Greek Army sounded the death knell for Christian minorities in Turkey. The process began with Christian owned businesses being boycotted, leading to bankruptcies and confiscation of property.  Eventually intellectuals and community leaders were rounded up and executed."

Surprisingly Wikipedia also notes the methods that were used in the massacres.
      "One of the methods used in the elimination of the Greek population was the "labor battalions. Young people were captured and forced to do exhausting slave labor by the Turkish State, in order to reconstruct areas destroyed during the war. Some were sent to concentration camps and amongst the survivors was the well known writer, Elias Venezis, who later described his experiences in his book 'Number 31328.' Thousands died of exhaustion, starvation and dehydration on forced marches. This effective method was used by the Turks  to force the weaker population, including women and children, to walk for hundreds of kilometers until they died. This was known as the 'Light Death.'
If you think that these events were not recorded then think again. They were documented by American, as well as the German and Austrian diplomats of the time.
       "Unlike Germany which has taken responsibility for its sins committed in World War II, Turkey still refuses to even admit that these events occurred, let alone apologize for the genocide and ethnic cleansing it inflicted on a helpless population. Not only were the people expunged from Turkey, so too were any traces of their existence. Admitting guilt would entail casting a shadow on Kemal Ataturk. The present Turkish government has gone to extraordinary lengths to quash any attempt to publicize these events throughout the world, including keeping their own people ignorant of their history. To do so would require a reexamination of the very foundation on which the modern Turkish State is built." (Source - The Pontic Greek Genocide)"


Today some attempt to rewrite history. Usually this is done by those with a political agenda in a winner take all approach (example George Soros). All they are basically doing is picking up where the perpetrators of a GENOCIDE left off. We can actually see this happening in the mainstream media, through the rhetoric from various neocon scholars, historians and deep thinkers. Not only are all these people in service of the Turkish government, which on its part continues to dehumanize, demonize, and destroy, by putting the "right spin" on all the events that haunt it, they are also distorting history and passing off their interpretations of history as facts.

No matter how much they try they cannot rewrite history itself, however their goal is more sinister. By repeating their lies and propaganda over and over again they hope that their views will eventually be adopted by the masses as the only truth. A fine example of this is FYROM. George Soros worked his magic in this former Yugoslav state and today all those under the age of 20, or since the destabilization of Yugoslavia, actually believe that they are direct descendants of Alexander the Great.

Everyone with half a brain knows that the Greek, Armenian and Assyrian genocides, were perpetrated by the Ottoman Turks. Even the Kurds, who were once active participants and abetted this genocide with the Ottomans (mostly against Assyrians), have today admitted this fact and now condemn this time in history. Unfortunately they, as well as other Muslim groups in the East, now find themselves in a reversal of roles and have become the target of draconian Turkish policies that are designed to suppress their identity and language. Let us not forget that this is exactly what was done to all of the Greeks who miraculously remained in some parts of Turkey.

For Greeks, Assyrians and Armenians, the genocide has not ended, and it cannot end so long as Turkey denies that it ever occurred. This is why Ankara has spent billions on influencing Western diplomats and officials to look the other way, or basically keep silent on this matter.

Has it worked?

Yes it has!

The West, (with the exception of Australia, Cyprus and very few other countries), has surrendered to this decades old denial of the Turkish government deciding that it is more important to placate the neo-Ottomans than to be truthful about history. It is no secret that they have adopted this policy on account of economic, military and geopolitical reasons. Let us not forget that the US has a huge airbase in Turkey that they need for wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. From what we read Turks have threatened to close that base, cancel purchases of American military equipment, boycott American goods and even pass their own resolution condemning 19th century US government massacres of Native Americans (if the US ever did recognize any of these GENOCIDES.

Unfortunately there are other more controversial reasons as well.

A couple of years ago, Turkey was awash in dramatic disclosures connecting officials there to the right-wing Grey Wolves, the terrorist band which has preyed on the region for years. In 1981, a terrorist from the Grey Wolves had even attempted to assassinate Pope John Paul II in Vatican City.
Did Turkey allow the mafia and right-wing extremists to operate death squads and to smuggle drugs with impunity? This I cannot answer dear Frappers, but reports at the time (check link below) claim that the rupture of such state secrets also released clues to other major Cold War mysteries.
     "Besides the attempted papal assassination, the Turkish disclosures could shed light on the collapse of the Vatican bank in 1982 and the operation of a clandestine pipeline that pumped sophisticated military hardware into the Middle East — apparently from NATO stockpiles in Europe — in exchange for heroin sold by the Mafia in the United States." (source )
Do you think that operations such as those noted above died with the fall of the Soviet Union? Apparently they didn't; Operation Gladio B is the continuation of the old NATO Gladio program and geopolitical analysts claim that it covers a tangled web of covert operatives, billionaire Imams, drug running, prison breaks and terror strikes. The same officials believe that the ultimate goal is the destabilization of Central Asia and the Caucasus. You can probably find out more about this subject by just googling Gladio B on the web.

(Also, search and see how this coincides with what is happening in Syria with all the foreign rebels operating there. You will be surprised to learn that history is once again repeating itself.)

I personally am clueless on such operations, because I cannot tolerate any type of violence, but the little that I have read notes that Turkey is once again using such operations to continue its barbarism and genocidal acts in Syria. One recent article that was posted on the web and supports my argument is an interview by Taleb Ibrahim (check link in this paragraph). According to him Turkey's T.Erdogan is displacing people in Syria. Does the tactic sound familiar to the events endured by the Greeks, Assyrians and Armenians one hundred years ago? It is! He says that the so called rebels, (who we all know now are foreigners that are paid by countries such as Qatar, S.Arabia and Turkey to destabilize this country) are "cleansing" many areas in Syria while Turkey is shipping thousands of Islamist Turks from other Turkish lands there to settle, take over entire villages and eventually bring down the Syrian government of Bashir Assad. In a few words, he reveals how Erdogan is pushing Syrians out of Syria and changing the demographics of this country from Arabs to Islamist Turks (by using ISIS to perform GENOCIDE). Why is he doing this? Aside from his dreams of reviving a new Ottoman empire he is also acting on behalf of many interests that cannot perform these acts because they are acts of war! Even wars have rules and ethnic cleansing, or in this case GENOCIDE, cannot be committed and is considered as a war crime. (View VIDEO by clicking HERE).


How can such psychological wounds be healed if a crime is never acknowledged by the perpetrator? To survive ordeals such as a genocide, or to lose your loved ones to such senseless violence, has an undeniable effect on the shaping of one’s character, personality, and general life experiences. Genocide is a grave matter and exemplifies the absolute worst in, or shows its perpetrators to be devoid of, humanity. If Greek government officials are permitted to dismiss these acts, then genocide is trivialized, and a vicious cycle ensues. So now do you understand why we decided to slam the statements by Mr. Filis?

Friends, the plight of the Greeks of Pontus, just like the Asia Minor Catastrophe and the Greek-Turkish War of 1919-1922, are events that shaped modern Greek History and that speak to the hearts of all Greeks. The only thing that Pontians want is that the world will come to know of their tragic fate. Those who deny these events, as Filis and Repoussi have done, only help countries such as Turkey to repeat such atrocities again (example Syria).

As with the Armenian Genocide, Filis and Repoussi and all Greek neocons opposing the recognition of the Greek Genocide of Asia Minor, attempt to shift focus away from the unfathomable reality of the historical event by portraying the issue as one of nationalism and ethnic conflict rather than of healing and remembrance.

I think prominent U.S. scholar and author of “Black Dog of Fate” Professor Peter Balakian said it best when he stated:
     "the driving force behind the renewed awareness of Turkey’s Greek holocaust transcends nationality and ideology: this is not about ethnic conflict, Greek vs. Turk or Armenian vs. Turk, this is about universal moral issues and universal human rights issues... Clearly, denying genocide paves the way for future genocide, for it suggests to the world that governments can commit mass murder with impunity.”

My personal feelings about Alexis Tsipras’ government are irrelevant at this point because the facts speak volumes. No government official has a right to express his or her “opinion" on historical facts which have shaped borders and are still considered as fresh wounds by the Greek people. When they make statements –whatever these statements may be- they are speaking as an entity, or a government. If they want to express their personal views then they should get out of office and write a book. To deny historical facts is not only an attack on the morale of the Pontians, who till this day live with this bloody memory, but it is an affront to the dignity of all the victims, both living and dead.

Thankfully I am not alone with these views, many ministers from all parties criticised Filis’ statements as did a score of people from all walks of life on the social networks. The main opposition New Democracy party even organized a petition demanding his removal from office as did Pontian Greek associations.

The Greek Left, especially SYRIZA, now has a chance to rehabilitate its past and correct the mistakes that it once made on this issue by unequivocally recognizing that what befell on the Greek populations in Turkey was GENOCIDE as defined by the 1948 United Nations Convention on The Prevention and Punishment of The Crime of Genocide. If the government wants to save face then it must immediately scream out the word GENOCIDE, force Filis to apologize to the Pontian people, and then ask him to resign.

I will repeat it once again, refusing to say the word GENOCIDE because it will sour Turkey is just another form of aggression and simply allows Ankara to continue with the process of genocide. Most importantly, it prevents the healing of wounds that were inflicted by the GENOCIDE on our people, kills the dignity of the remaining survivors and destroys the remembrance of this tragic crime.

A couple of days ago I announced that I would not be posting any articles on HellasFrappe because the blog has not received any donations to maintain itself. Following the latest comments by Filis, I decided to wave this decision and write a special report to voice my opinion on his statements because -as always- when something tugs at my heart, heats up my nerves and provokes my logic I react immediately. As I was researching the material used in this article I came across this video which was posted by a Greek analyst who is an expert on Turkish affairs and then re-posted on facebook by a Frapper. It features a famed Turkish performer singing about the plight of the Pontian people. This should put some neocon Greeks to shame since they regrettably want us to forget, while some Turks, who know the truth, have the courage to even sing it out loud. (Please listen to the words).


September 26, 2015

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SPECIAL REPORT - Why Greece needs Costas Karamanlis to rise to the occasion once more!

We kick off a new news year at a time when PASOK, which now calls itself SYRIZA, begins governing Greece for the seventh time, while the refugee crisis is at its height and austerity has without a doubt impoverished one third of the Greek population. In all this chaos, there is no opposition because the conservatives -who lost to the SYRIZA party on September 20th- are seeking to settle scores. Why should we care? Well, the developments in ND do not just affect the party voters and officers, but all of political life as we know it because the role of the main opposition is crucial for democracy, since it monitors the government. Without a doubt, Greece faces some daunting challenges in the months to come, which will require all of our attention and support, and in all this uncertainty there is one thing missing, someone to give this nation some hope. A natural born leader.

Marina Spanos

Some may be scratching their heads especially after Alexis Tsipras' grand win -for the second time- a couple of days ago, but we all know that he is not a natural born leader. The reasons are clear. Groups like SYRIZA employ radical-sounding or Marxist phraseology, and only do so to cover for right-wing policies and a defense of the capitalist system. In other words, he is nothing more than a pseudo version of the late Andreas Papandreou and the PASOK party. Tsipras shot to fame when the SYRIZA party, which in all reality was nothing more than a desperate alliance of leftist factions, finished second to the conservative party in the elections in 2012 at the height of the Greek crisis. This was a time when there was great fear that Greece's economy would crash out of the euro and Tsipras rose to fame because he lied to voters by telling them that he would tear up the country’s “barbarous” bailout agreement and impose a harsh “wealth” tax to fund the budget. Today he is taxing the poor as much as the wealthy and has not only signed a third bailout agreement, but his win has also strengthened all of the old PASOK forces (unions, etc.)

Only those who are blind (or have clear interests) refuse to see that his words were nothing but cr**p. Unfortunately the people of this country were fooled once again. 

(After all how else would PASOK continue to rule this country e?)

HellasFrappe had predicted -and warned all of you of this- this months ago, when it discovered Gianna Angelopoulou-Daskalakis' fondness for Alexis. We had presented her ties to George Papandreou and questioned her sudden support for Alexis. We have also presented Tsipras affiliation with the Brookings Institute -a think tank that had also become second home for good old GAP-. We all know that this institute is mostly funded by the Soros foundation so it was no surprise to us that Gianna got Alexis a prime seat at an event in New York on Sunday which is hosted by none other than the Clintons. The discussion, claim reports, is going to focus on boosting growth in Greece and southeastern Europe and will take place in the context of the annual conference of the Clinton Global Initiative, a venture of former US president Bill Clinton. Think about it. A self-proclaimed Marxist in the heart of global investment. It sounds like a joke!

So how can we rid ourselves of all these pseudo leaders and allow real statesmen to govern this country?  Well we need to once again become inspired as a society but in order to do so a natural born leader must rise that will prevail over partisan and personal agendas. He must be someone who will fully embrace the power of the head of this country and be the visionary that we all need.

After all, Tsipras was so terrible in his first round of government that today he is not running the country. Don't take my word for it, even the Guardian stated this several days ago. The British newspaper released an article where it mentions that the person who will be responsible for the governance of Greece is expected to be Maarten Verwey, a senior civil servant at the Dutch finance ministry who joined the commission in 2011 and led its Cyprus assistance program. His powers are unprecedented, Guardian says, adding that if Greek people have heard about his name, then they know that their vote will made a very small difference on September 20th to what happens next. Why is this happening? It is simple, Europe is prepared to keep Greece’s new leader in line so as to implement the reforms agreed.

Back to our dilemma, and beyond the given responsibilities of politicians and parties, Greece really needs to be governed with stability, consequence and coordination.  Is it Vangelis Meimarakis? Well, Meimarakis was good as a leader for the conservatives, but he is not a visionary and therefore cannot lead the nation he does not have leadership potential. 

(There is a fine line between leading a party, and leading a nation)

I personally bow my hat to him in unifying the ND party because at the start of the electoral campaign everyone thought he was the clear loser, however, as the polls closed he threatened to topple the mighty Tsipras from his throne. He also was successful in bringing something else to the forefront. Meimarakis proved that the center-right party is deeply rooted in society and is the only political force that has the ability to reform, in spite of its unfortunate feudal composition.

Some slam the conservatives for the decisions they made, but you have to give credit to ND for not falling apart like PASOK did (which today presents itself as SYRIZA, To Potami, Elia, and even PASOK). On the contrary, the conservatives found the strength to stand and convince all concerned that they are the only guarantors of Greece’s European course.


The answer is simple: Costas Karamanlis!

Why is Costas Karamanlis such a commodity, and how did this statesman keep ND together? Frappers, the answer is obvious, he has the ability to unite and not to divide, that is why.

But in order to get a better understanding of this exceptionalism, I decided to publish some excerpts from the first article that was published on this blog which more or less explains why there are scores of us who want him to rise again from the ashes and take hold of the conservative party and the nation.

Greece needs a natural-born leader, which is something that we do not have. As popular as Tsipras is for a minority of people he is not a visionary.

(Minority meaning that there was a 40percent absent vote at the recent national elections).

Leadership requires a climate of trust where people give you their wholehearted commitment and that is why this writer is, and will always be, committed to Karamanlis' vision.

Let me explain: There is an old school of thought that says the course of human history is charted by “great men:” Heads of church and state, generals and business magnates whose individual qualities of vision, courage, and charisma are so powerful that they shape the fate of nations and economies. Costas Karamanlis, former Greek prime minister (2004-2009) was one such leader.  His family is one of the two most powerful political dynasties in the country and his uncle, Constantine Karamanlis, is a towering figure of Modern Greek history. Constantine was prime minister from 1955 to 1963 and 1974 to 1980. Between the late 60s and early 1970s, he went into self-imposed exile in Paris after a military junta took power in Greece. He returned amid high drama to restore Greek democracy and established the New Democracy Party as a moderate umbrella organisation of right-of-centre groups.

While his uncle, a schoolmaster's son, was known to have an austere personality, Costas Karamanlis was depicted as a more easy-going, charismatic, affable figure, with a love of soccer.Educated in the US and Athens, Costas Karamanlis rose through the party ranks from his student days in the 1980s and emerged as the last-minute surprise winner during a leadership challenge following the conservative right-wing New Democracy party's 1996 election defeat and became Greece’s youngest political leader in history.

When he first rose to power some analysts criticized the move, but in the years as party leader, Costas Karamanlis secured a grip on his notoriously undisciplined party and provided the Greek Prime Minister Costas Simitis’ socialist party (that was in power at the time) with some of the toughest opposition they faced since the 1980s. Voters were immediately captivated by his clear sense of purpose, for he brought hope a renewed commitment, work ethics and impeccable VALUES back into to the political scene.

Aided by the unpopularity of the incumbent PASOK government led by Costas Simitis (a party that had been in power between 1981—1989 and from 1993—2004) and with charismatic Karamanlis at the wheel, the New Democracy party defeated the PASOK Socialists in the spring of 2004 just before the Olympic Games. He was re-elected in office in 2007. In 2009, and after losing to the socialists, he announced his resignation from the head of the conservative party. He was succeeded by Antonis Samaras. After he left office, many in Greece continued to blame him and the New Democracy party for economic difficulties, and till this day he continues to take blows from his opponents.

Why would so many turn their backs on such a great visionary you ask? Simple he was too great of a leader for a country so deeply rooted in corruption, that the very thought of an honest man was too good to be true... that is why.

I am deeply convinced that Karamanlis is a man that leads by example and that is what his opponents eventually used against him to weaken his popularity with us the people.Honesty and integrity were and still are the vital ingredients that signal him out from all other leaders before and after him, with an exception of course of his late uncle who was also a great leader.

Karamanlis had courage, let us not forget the veto his government imposed on FYROM’s (Skopje) accession to NATO. His stance on the Cyprus issue and his support of Papadopoulos' decision can only be characterized as patriotic.

His only sin was that he wanted to place Greece on the energy map, by allowing several pipelines to run through our boarders. These pipelines, as we all know, did not fit the purposes and/or interests of many western nations and by upsetting the scene he unwillingly created enemies for himself. He also expanded Greece's relations with Russia and this -as we all know today- upset the some of our allies so much that they even attempted to assassinate him.

Some claim that he looked for a reason to escape, leaving us to our fate. These same people forget that they tilted their support to George Papandreou and the Memorandums instead of listening to Karamanlis warnings in 2009. He was not intimidated by what our allies thought, and most importantly he never once thought of holding on to power, he only worked for the people.

In the course of history such personalities -or visionaries- are not well liked in the political fora. Take John F. Kennedy for example. He went against the system and became a victim by it. Karamanlis is one more such case.Successful or not in his government, liked, or not liked by his supporters and foes, no one can deny that he is the only most effective and profound leader that this country has today.

The reason we know this is because we know he was committed to worthwhile results and governed himself and the people of this country with those results in mind. It was this orientation that pushed him to be creative in solving problems, to subordinate their lesser motives and to persist in the face of obstacles and it was this commitment that eventually led to his downfall.

Till this day, his opponents still fear him, and have the audacity to criticise his decisions while in government. Even though evidence has surfaced that prove all of this to be untrue, they still attempt to discredit him. Some may ask, why so much criticism? The answer is simple dear Frappers: When he speaks he has greater public approval than that of almost all his predecessors and successors and that generates fear in his opponents who thirst for political power.

In fact he still has an almost worshipful attitude by many Greeks and this magic has largely to do with public desire for a heroic, inspiring leaders such as himself.

On a personal level, I admired him most for his sense of humour and his ability to speak directly to an audience. Karamanlis’ charisma and charm motivated many Greek people, such as me, who never had a sense of Greek politics, to be the best they could be for their country, and I personally thank him for this.

He has kept silent since his resignation as party leader, and I guess in some way it has given ammunition to his opponents to hit him even harder. Those who never stopped believing in him -or the Karamanlikoi supporters- know by instinct that this silence is his weapon to expose all his opponents, and in some way -the system-, that so unfairly hit at him for the past decade.

I also believe that in his last speech, just before the 2009 general elections, he indirectly warned us of the things to come... as well as left it to be understood that when push comes to shove that he will rise to the occasion again.

With so much chaos and uncertainty ailing our country, has that day arrived? This I cannot answer, but the only thing I can say is that Greece needs and thirsts for leaders such as himself. We need someone with a deep understanding of the country's problems, who has managed state affairs at the highest level and is in a position to converse abroad and to demand the respect of political leaders. Based on all of the above, only Costas Karamanlis can fit this role. Tsipras cannot. He has lost the respect of the international community. It is time to stop settling for less in this country because there is no room for mediocrities and indifferent non-political figures.

We need a man with a vision that works to resolve and heal the wounds of this obviously divided nation. (We saw this manifest at the recent referendum, slamming those who believed that the civil had ended in Greece.) A leader that honestly loves Greece and most importantly has the ability to give us the people some hope again.

Only Karamanlis can fill this role. It is his destiny.

So in the upcoming leadership convention, the conservatives, who have contributed greatly towards stabilizing democracy in this country, need to think long and hard and turn their backs on those seeking their five minutes of fame.

That is why I firmly believe that there can only be one visionary and this natural born leader's name is  Costas Karamanlis, everyone else is a pseudo version of Tsipras.

September 12, 2015

Donation Campaign - Help us to keep HellasFrappe "interest" free!

As Editor of HellasFrappe I would like to kick off the new news year by thanking all of you for trusting HellasFrappe and for allowing us to enlighten you everyday with what is happening in Greece, Cyprus, the Balkans and the Eastern Med. Before taking some time off in August, HellasFrappe had made quite a bit of progress since I continued the dream that Mike and I built with the creation of this blog which in my opinion is a united and democratic news source.

Since his passing two years ago, I have continued this task and provided all of you with free, fast and relevant news and information directly to your desktop, mobile or tablet every single day. The only thing I have asked, once or twice a year, is that you consider making a donation to the blog. It should be reiterated that these funds are crucial for the blog's maintenance and development. In simple terms, the overall goal is to raise enough funds to keep the blog operating.

Unfortunately during the last funding campaign the blog did not receive any donations at all. Quite disappointing some would say, but I am still hopeful that there are Frappers out there that still believe in the blog's purpose.

I need not remind all of you that it is never pleasant for me to ask readers to contribute to the blog. Needless to say there is no other way that the blog can raise funds. We are not financed by any political parties, NGO's, or other organizations and this is why I hold a funding campaign twice a year. The first was held in the Spring with zero results. I am now holding the second one with the hope that I can save the blog. So please join me in this fight by keeping independent information alive and "interest" free. Support independent and alternative media by making a donation to HellasFrappe TODAY.

Please make a donation by simply clicking on the "Donate" button below..

Much love to all,
Marina Spanos

September 7, 2015

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Illegal Immigrants on Lesvos Get Violent, Islanders Fear For Safety (VIDEOS & PICS)

The situation with the tens of thousands of illegal immigrants, who invaded the shores of the island of Lesvos this summer, is getting totally out of control. Over the last few days the Greek riot police and Port authorities have been attempting to bring some order to the chaos that has been created there, but to no avail. Even tear gas and stun grenades were used to calm the angry crowds and yet the situation is still out of control. And if that isn't enough, over the last few hours, a series of photographs have been circulating on the Internet with a threatening message from the illegal immigrants themselves.

Written on the placard are the words "WE WILL DESTROY THE ISLAND" and as seen in the photo by the Lesvospost, and as reported by the military defence site defencenet, there are several immigrants posing in front of it. It is unknown if this is a provocation, or was indeed written by a few immigrants themselves, the only thing that is certain is that something needs to be done because the residents of the island are now outnumbered.

We say this because as seen in the video above, many illegal immigrants apparently broke into and apparently looted a butcher shop and are now armed with Hajar, knives and cleavers. (Check video ABOVE at 1'49 seconds and what is stated to the Minister of Immigration by the Island's Authorities). No one knows how this situation will unfold, but one thing is certain, something needs to get done and it needs to be done NOW!

The riots and attacks on Greek authorities is now a daily occurrence, especially when the ferry boats begin boarding passengers. On Sunday for instance, the main harbor on the island turned into a battlefield with Afghans -who refuse to be documented- trying to illegally board the ship which was transporting legal refugees from Syria to the port of Piraeus.

The incidents began when they spotted the "Eleftherios Venizelos" ship in the dock. The rioters -who we repeat have illegally entered our country- began pelting Greek authorities with Molotov cocktails, so the Greek riot police and Coast guard responded with tear gas and stun grenades. The same scene was repeated when the "Terra Jet" ship arrived as well.

A separate report from TO VIMA claims that even more clashes broke out later in the day at the Kara Tepe camp which was set up to temporarily house some of these people.

This clash began about half hour after the registration of Syrian refugees began. According to this report a separate group of illegal immigrants demanded that they be documented first before the Syrian refugees (who we all know are the only ones that are entitled to be given asylum, everyone else is an illegal intruder in our country).

In the chaos that followed two Greek Coast Guard officers and three migrants were injured.

The report in TO VIMA reveals that many more who where caught up in the scuffles, primarily women and children, experienced breathing problems from the commotion on the island’s port and were taken to the local hospital for first aid.

The same report from TO VIMA notes that two youths – aged 17 and 19 – were arrested for throwing Molotov cocktails against Syrian refugees. At about 2am on Saturday they threw a Molotov cocktail against a family of Syrian refugees that was camping in a municipal garden, injuring a 30-year-old Syrian man. About 15 minutes later they three a second bomb against another family that was camping in a park, however they missed their target. Luckily a CCTV camera caught them red-handed and they were promptly arrested. The two have reportedly confessed and will be facing felony charges. It appears that the 17-year-old had constructed the Molotov cocktails.

The situation has angered the residents on the island of Lesvos who are now feeling threatened with their presence. Indicative is the video below that was filmed by RTL.

On Monday tens of hundreds of illegal immigrants protested on Lesvos asking their transfer to Greece’s capital Athens. They demand to be immediately transferred to Athens in order to be moved elsewhere within Europe. We need not remind our readers that they are demanding this without presenting any proper documentation.

There is a very good reason why HellasFrappe keeps noting this.

Migration Minister Yiannis Mouzalas told a reporter on STAR channel on Monday (VIDEO BELOW) that there is a possibility that jihadists are among the refugees who arrived in Greece. According to European security services it is possible a small number of jihadists crossed into Europe through Greece. He said that at least two-thirds of the estimated 15,000-18,000 refugees and economic migrants stranded in "miserable" conditions on the eastern Aegean island of Lesvos are going to be ferried to the mainland in the next five days. That leaves one third on the island, who again we repeat are refusing to be documented.

He also announced that extra ferries were laid on Monday to transport these people to the mainland while some ships will serve as temporary screening and reception centers.

At the Greek-FYROM boarder where many of these illegal immigrants are headed to, scuffles broke out early Monday between FYROM police and thousands of illegal immigrants attempting to head north toward Europe. According to the Associated Press, about 2,000 people had gathered at the Greek border near the village of Idomeni just after dawn, attempting to cross into FYROM, but authorities there were allowing only small groups to cross every half hour, leading to tension. The situation later calmed after more were allowed to cross, with about 1,000 having passed the border by mid-day.

Police officials in Greece note that more than 5,000 people have crossed the border heading north in the 24 hours from Sunday morning to Monday morning. Imagine how many illegal immigrants are entering Greece on a daily basis. (All thanks to SYRIZA's open boarder policies).

Reference in Greek & English- Defencenet, Enikos, Associated Press, YouTube, ERT, Newsit, MEGA Channel, Alpha Channel, SKAI Tv

August 20, 2015

Tribute to Mike - Two year memorial

Today, I ask all of you to feel the joy and beauty of Mike’s boundless spirit as I write this brief two-year memorial for him. For those of you who do not know, Mike was my soulmate, my confident, my partner in crime, my best friend and the co-founder of HellasFrappe. He died on August 20th, 2013 after suffering from pancreatic cancer. I hope that by sharing this private moment in my life you are all able to take wisdom from it for I really believe that God intended that this be a teachable moment.

Every time I think I have worked through the various stages of grief, I suddenly find myself at square one. I still feel his presence morning, noon and night and sometimes I even feel his hand on my shoulder when I am at my worst. I still have a hard time accepting he is gone, I still cannot accept the stillness in my home and the sorrow in my heart but clearly I have moved forward.

Why? Because his fight with cancer taught me that if we are living simply for status, money, fame, then none of these things go out with us when we leave this world. Our riches will be left in the bank, our fame will hang on a wall or will be forgotten and our status will not impress the Lord.

Another thing he taught me is that there is true beauty in the written word. When those silent prayers to our loved ones aren’t enough, putting pen to paper (or fingers to keyboards in my case) can be quite soothing to the soul.

Today, two years after his death, I choose to continue the positives that he and I began together. My primary direction, however, is to add more meaning and purpose to my life because I know this is what he would have wanted for me. This includes selecting a specialty, continuing to write, broadening HellasFrappe, reconnecting with my family in more mutually fulfilling ways, and deepening my religious faith and outreach.

I also finally realized that those we love continue with us throughout our lives! They are never more than a thought away. Many advise me to leave behind the life Mike and I once shared together so that I can move forward, but I continually tell them that we never heal from leaving someone we loved behind, but rather only heal from bringing them with us.

Truth has become ever so clear to me especially with regard to what really matters in our lives, especially when we are brushed by death’s wing. All I know is that each and everyone of us is put here on this earth to learn, share, love, appreciate and give to others. None of us know when this fantastic journey will end. It can be taken away at any moment. Perhaps this is a way of telling us that we must make the most out of every single day.

So my advice to all of you Frappers is to find something beautiful to notice. It doesn't have to be something you see, touch, smell or taste, it could be as simple as the sound of the wind or the way the morning light catches the flowers in your garden. The important thing is to look for these things, and cherish them because it is these very things that are often unnoticed.

Will I ever get over the sadness of his death, probably not, but I will learn to keep moving forward allowing time to do its healing. Indeed, the scars will remain in my heart, but they are a gentle reminder of the good things that we both shared with one another.

I am humbled by the compassion, and multitude of messages that I have received over the past two years from people all over the world over his death. Thank you all, each and everyone, for your prayers and for allowing me to make Mike shine the way he deserved to shine. I want to also thank you all for allowing me to share such a personal experience publicly, and hope that it inspires all of you to stop and selflessly share a memorable moment with your loved ones before its too late.

Marina Spanos

August 12, 2015


PROVOCATION - Illegal immigrants on Kalymnos stage protest - Tear Up Greek Flag!

credit naftemboriki

Immigrants who apparently ILLEGALLY entered the island of of Kalymnos earlier this week staged a protest and according to the website they even had the audacity to tear up the Greek flag! According to the report, the incident began when police officials asked the immigrants to hand over their documents. For unknown reasons, the immigrants took offence, became hysterical and then began vandalizing the Greek flag!

The same immigrants, who we repeat ILLEGALLY invaded the island, then began to complain about the red tape needed to obtain the refugee status (or the documentation needed for this status). They shouted at authorities to hand them the documents (without the proper checks) and allow them to sail off to Athens. Tensions remained high for quite a bit of time and according to the same report even local port officials were abused.

Meanwhile, island residents are pressuring local authorities to remove the immigrants from public areas on their island (or in places where the immigrants -by their own initiative- have made makeshift accommodations).

The incident was even reported by MEGA channel (video below) but (as expected) they did not mention that the Greek flag was vandalized and instead only focused on the chaos.

Editor's Note:  ANYONE who dares to burn, tear, or even vandalize the Greek flag needs to be thrown out of this country IMMEDIATELY.  There is no ifs and or buts. There are plenty of other countries these people can go to if they truly are refugees. Why not go to S.Arabia or to Qatar? Try tearing up the flag in these countries, or better yet try abusing a police officer in places like Germany, France or New York. In the first case your head will fly off and in the second you will either be shot down by plastic bullets, or real gunfire. Whereas Greece has to be tolerant of human trafficking, because we live in fear of being called racists. How ridiculous is that? If illegal immigrants burned the American flag on a street in New York City, the police department there would have called in the swat team, the national guard or would have even shot the provocateurs!  We have had it up to here with all of this, and all this political correctness. It is so clear, our nation is under threat; we pity all of those who are forcing all of this human trafficking down our throats. Enough is enough!

Sources in Greek:

August 11, 2015


CHAOS - Illegal Migrants Begin Attacking Greek Police on Kos, Fling Rocks at Cars, Attack Public Buildings! (VIDEOS, PICS)

credit defencent

Hundreds of immigrants who entered the Greece ILLEGALLY apparently revolted against Greek authorities on the Greek island of Kos Tuesday at noon. The immigrants, who obviously have no respect for Greece and its laws, nor realize that they are here ILLEGALLY, demanded quick registration from authorities and then began blocking the main coastal road in the island's main town. They also vandalized public buildings and, as shown in the video below, even had the audacity to throw large rocks at drive by cars.

Local police authorities who were completely overwhelmed by the spark in violence have been trying desperately all summer to contain the surprisingly increasing numbers of people arriving every single day on rubber dinghies from the nearby Turkish shore. The local police tried to impose order on the crowd by spraying the jostling migrants with fire extinguishers and using batons.

Kos Mayor Kyritsis has called on the government to accept responsibility for the situation. At the moment more than 7,000 migrants have forced their way onto the island making it difficult to control the situation (almost one thousand immigrants ILLEGALLY force their way onto Greek soil every single day). The Mayor of Kos warned that there is danger of bloodshed, noting that the police force is not equipped nor has the manpower to maintain control and carry out registration. He called for special forces to be deployed on the island immediately to avoid any sort of extreme conditions.

The migrants are picky too. A local web site titled said in one report that the process of transferring migrants to the Antagora stadium was met with hitches since most of these illegal immigrants are refusing to be documented. (Now why would a refugee refuse to be documented???? That alone speaks volumes!)

Please take not of how the migrants are being coached to protest by an unknown man who is holding a speaker. All photos are from defencenet

A degeneration of the situation resulted in roughly 1,500 of these people gathering in the stadium where they had the audacity to begin fighting against Greek police. As seen in the video below, they are not only out of control, but are attacking Greek public buildings.

These migrants, who are mostly from countries such as Afghanistan and Pakistan and not Syria like some internationalists claim they are, were literally saved by Greek residents from the island of Kos who plunged into the waters to save them from their sinking boats. This is the gratitude of these migrants!

HellasFrappe has no words! We only feel pity for all the pseudo humanitarian organizations (mostly Leftist in nature) who not only advise these migrants on what to do, but also teach them how to revolt and protest. We hope, that the Greek army is called to the scene to put some order. It is obvious that these migrants are ruthless, and therefore dangerous. If they are refusing to be documented then it is because they obviously have something to hide. Let us not forget that many experts have warned us for months now that there are many ruthless (and dangerous) individuals hiding amongst this community. This is why they have to be documented. The migrants however do not respect law and order, and most certainly do not honor the fact that Greek tax payers are paying for their daily survival. What is worse, they think that they can do as they please in our country. We totally agree with the mayor of Kos, something needs to be done quickly because sooner or later bloodshed will be spilled. We personally do not know how tolerant Greeks can be. Who ever disagrees with this opinion is a closet slave trader and human trafficker in our opinion. Enough is enough!

Sources - defencenet, Enikos, ProtoThema, SKAI Tv, ANT1, YouTube

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Gov't & creditors close terms For 3rd Memorandum - Will SYRIZA pass it through Parliament?

After a marathon meeting that lasted more than 18 hours the Greek government and the European Commission, European Central Bank, European Stability Mechanism and the International Monetary Fund finally locked an agreement. There is no doubt that the agreement will be painful but with the economy in the state that it is, it is obvious that any other choice would have been absolutely catastrophic.

All sides reportedly agreed on the primary deficit of 2015 and surpluses of 2016 and 2017. According to reports the introduction of any new measures in relation to achieving fiscal targets for 2015-2016 were ruled out.

The announcement was made on SKAI tv early in the morning and was confirmed by Minister of Finance Euclid Tsakalotos and Minister of Economy Giorgos Stathakis as they were exiting the Athens Hilton where the talks were held and on their way to Maximos Mansion to brief Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on all the developments.

On Monday evening the PM apparently had held phone calls with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande and European Commission president Jean Claude Juncker as well as with European Parliament president Martin Schulz with aim the speeding up of the negotiations in order an agreement to be reached until today (Tuesday). During his contacts, Tsipras underlined the need for the completion of the negotiations according to the EU Summit's decisions, noting that the Greek government is already moving on this direction. Government sources estimate that Tsipras' intervention was decisive and the developments confirmed all sides' volition for an agreement.

The reports on Tuesday morning about the agreement claim that mutual compromises were made on issues that had remained unresolved. Such issues include a new privatization fund, energy deregulation and non-performing loans. The government apparently agreed to a primary deficit of 0.25% GDP in 2015 and primary surpluses of 0.5% GDP for 2016, 1.75% GDP for 2017 and 3.5% for 2018, the same reports added.

Greece's lenders appear to have backed down on the issue of red-loans (regarding the legal protection against foreclosure), but the government apparently accepted a cap on the value of protection, which will likely be 300,000 euros. The four institutions apparently want a provision so that such problematic loans can be sold to special funds. On its part the government voiced its objection, and presented a counter-proposal for the settlement (or haircut) of such loans by a special management body.

Concerning the new fund for the privatization of public assets, Greece's lenders are in favor of upgrading and further improving the existing privatization fund TAIPED, so that outstanding state sell-offs can be completed as soon as possible. The government wants to set up an entirely new body though, which all have a ‘loose’ timetable that will allow it to put out these assets at the best time (or take advantage of the market).

The government was negative against a deregulation of the natural gas market and a separation of networks from energy providers, but it does not look like they are going to get their way.

Another thing that was discussed was the issue of collective bargaining, collective dismissals and union legislation. Greece's lenders insist that the terms of collective labor agreements only roll over for three months during negotiations, rather than six.

A few other issues that were also covered include the abolition of early retirements, with the Greek government wanting to address the matter in October. Also, a special tax for heating oil for farmers is going to occur in two installments, (one in October 2015 and the next in October 2016). It was also agreed to raise the VAT on private tutoring to 23% in order to offset a reduction of the VAT on beef from 23% to 13%.

From what we also learn, the solidarity tax is going to remain unchanged for incomes that reach no more than 30,000 euros but is going to increase for incomes over 500,000 euros (or from, 2.8% to 8%). For incomes up to 50,000 euros it will go from 1.4% to 2%, and for incomes up to 100,000 euros it is going to be raised from 2.1% to 4%. Finally for incomes up to 500,000 it is going to reach 6% from 2.8%.

Here is the list of 35 'prior actions' the Greek government must implement as a condition for receiving bailout money according to the Kathimerini newspaper. Keep in mind that these are the first 35 proposals, there are just as many proposals coming in October!
  1. A more restrictive definition of the farmer's profession
  2. Raise the tonnage tax on shipping firms
  3. Make quick changes to the special property tax so billing can start in September
  4. Changes to recently adopted taxes
  5. Changes in the medical prescriptions system
  6. Cut generic drug prices
  7. Eliminate tax discounts on fuel used for farming
  8. Heating oil tax breaks to be better targeted to benefit the poor
  9. A reassessment of welfare spending to make annual savings equal to 0.5% of GDP
  10. Restructuring of civil service
  11. Tackle inefficiencies in tax collection
  12. Abolish upper limit of 25% on confiscation of wages, pensions for debts to state,banks
  13. Reset lower debt limit for confiscations lower, to €1,500
  14. Changes in debt settlements by raising interest rates, excluding delinquents
  15. All tax investigation under the Financial Crimes Squad (SDOE)
  16. No more settlements on tax, pension fund contribution debts
  17. Clarify eligibility requirements for minimum guaranteed pension after 67
  18. Publish circulars on the implementation of the pensions reform law of 2010
  19. Freeze monthly limits of guaranteed earnings-related pensions
  20. Gradual elimination of early retirement schemes by 2022; retirement age at 67 or 62 with 40 years of contributions; hazardous professions and mothers of children with special needs exempted
  21. Eliminate VAT discounts on islands by end-2016.
  22. Draw detailed plan for bank recapitalisation, liquidity injection and management of non-performing loans
  23. Abolish law extending validity of collective bargaining deals past their expiration date (voted by the present government on 2 July 2015)
  24. Adopt OECD proposals on liberalizing trade in goods (non-prescription drugs exempted).
  25. Opening up closed professions (e.g. engineers, notaries)
  26. Limit levies and fees "in favor of third parties"
  27. Cut red tape and accelerate approval process for low-grade-risk investments.
  28. Liberalize natural gas market by 2018; other energy market reforms.
  29. Approve the privatizations programme undertaken by the country's privatizations agency, the Asset Development Fund.
  30. Set dates for privatization bids for the Piraeus and Thessaloniki ports; privatize state train operator with no change in terms.
  31. Go ahead with the sale of regional airports with no change in terms.
  32. Draw up a list with pending privatizations.
  33. Adopt best EU practices on non-salary benefits (e.g. allowances, bonuses) from 1 January 2016.
  34. Pass bill on restructuring the Athens Public Transport Agency
  35. Proposals for expediting court cases.
Gov't to also begin slashing MP salaries!

On Monday, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras held a meeting to discuss a new draft law that aims to introduce a tax on parliamentary allowance, as well as a reduction in the wages of MPs, public utility chairmen and the presidents of independent administrative authorities. Reports said that the new law will tax the monthly allowance given to MPs, including the bonuses for participating in committees. At present only 75% of the parliamentary allowance is taxed, with the pay from committee participation being tax free. The new bill aims to reduce the monthly pay of Ministers, Alternate Ministers, Deputy Ministers, general and special secretaries by 15% and limits are to be introduced on the payment of presidents, managers and board members of public utilities and enterprises.

SYRIZA in a mess over new Memorandum!

Speaking on Mega Channel on Tuesday morning, SYRIZA MP Kostas Lapavitsas said that the new memorandum should not be referred to as an "agreement” because it is a “bad word”. He said that “we had an agreement on July 21st, now we have a memorandum” and noted that the negotiation procedures were “incredible”, adding that he cannot even describe them. When asked about how intends to vote in Parliament, the MP (who has never hidden his passion for the drachma) stressed that he will first carefully read what will be publicized and evaluate it, underlining that he will not vote for something that he has not read. Obviously distraught, he said that his party was elected based on its anti-bailout rhetoric and program and the new austerity measures and bailout agreement follow the same measures that were adopted by all the governments before SYRIZA.

On his part, Vice President of European Parliament and SYRIZA MEP Dimitris Papadimoulis posted on Twitter that “the great majority of members, MPs and the especially the people of SYRIZA support the leadership and policy of Tsipras. This will soon become clear”.

However, SYRIZA MP and Left Platform member Stathis Leoutsakos urged the government carry on with SYRIZA's campaign pledges. Speaking on MEGA channel on Monday morning he revealed that SYRIZA's Left Platform is making preparations so that the third bailout is not voted in Parliament. According to him, “SYRIZA and the bailout are incompatible concepts”. When asked whether MPs in the the Left Platform will resign or run independently in future elections, he said that these were “preposterous scenarios” and underlined that it is important to "restore" SYRIZA and the government.

HellasFrappe's Opinion on Matters:

The uncertainty and destablization that Greece has experienced over the last seven months must finally come to an end. The few issues that remain to be ironed out can be tackled with mutual compromises, if the political will exits.

Let us not forget that a few days after SYRIZA was elected into government, the Greek economy began experiencing a liquidity problem and the country began to live in a state of restricted funding sources. As Tsipras' government played a delay game with the institutions, the European Central Bank began tightening the grip on liquidity. So the stories you hear Frappers about this happening around the time that the referendum was held are all a lie. If you go through the news day by day you will also discover that around the start of Spring (and with an impending impasse looming), plans were already in force for a parallel currency by Yianis with one n Varoufakis and a return to the drachma by the Left Platform.

At the end of June the government systematically played this dangerous delay game (with the parallel currency in mind), leaving the economy fully exposed (or to completely crumble), while constantly losing power and options.

It came as no surprise thereafter that the doomsday scenarios prevailed. We suddenly saw the outflow of deposits and when talks broke off and the referendum was announced everything spiraled totally out of control. So if it quacks like a duck, and walks like a duck, was it Frappers? Is it a tweetie bird or is it a duck? It is a damn duck! So who is responsible for the mess we are experiencing? It doesn't take a genius to figure out that by removing the protection provided by our participation in the European program, the possibility of a disorderly bankruptcy emerged, capital controls were introduced and the possibility of leaving the Eurozone was directly addressed. Thankfully and after realizing what unbearable consequences were looming for Greece with a possible return to the drachma, Tsipras decided to come back to reality and ensure Greece's position in the Eurozone.

What needs to be addressed now is how the government will manage the agreement. SYRIZA is a mess! The terms and conditions of the agreement will determine the political developments that will unfold in the next few weeks but what is paramount now is ensuring Greece’s stability and return to normality. Greece and its people cannot endure any further adventures.

Yup... no one in their right mind could have imagined such a crazy turn of events and so much flip-flopping in only six months! Fortunately the lies and myths of "money" existing have finally ended, and a rude awakening to reality has finally occurred! There is still a small fraction of society that refuses to be faced with this truth, but thankfully this is just a small portion now and is really not taken very seriously. Sooner or later, this country will head on the road to recovery. The question is: Did we really need to suffer so much to finally reach this point?

Sources - Enikos, protothema, kathimerini, Hmerisia, Naftemborki, To Bhma

July 28, 2015

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Supreme Court Takes Action Against Yianis (with one n) Varoufakis' Plan B - VIDEOS

After playing down the initiative as a contingency plan that had never been implemented, and after denying the report and claiming that the media was using it to discredit him, former Finance Minister Varoufakis finally admitted that he had made secret preparations to hack into Greek citizens' tax codes to create a parallel banking payment system. More exactly, Varoufakis admitted that he was developing a parallel banking system to turn the tax records of citizens from euro into drachmas with the touch of a button. In a conference call with the London-based OMFIF think-tank, which was recorded on July 16 but only released on Monday July 28th, Varoufakis outlines his secret plan to a bunch of hedge fund investors and says that Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras had given him the go ahead to devise this plan (named "Plan B") before gaining government on January 25th. (The scandal was exposed by the Kathimerini newspaper on Sunday.)

In the recording, which was released on Monday and which is causing a storm of reactions, we can actually hear Varoufakis clearly saying that he had assembled a five-person team led by U.S. economist James Galbraith to do just that.
     "We were planning to create, surreptitiously, reserve accounts attached to every tax file number, without telling anyone, just to have this system in a function under wraps," he said, adding that "of course this would be euro-denominated but at the drop of a hat it could be converted to a new drachma."
At some point in the recording, the moderator warns Varoufakis that other people were listening to the teleconference but would not repeat its contents and Varoufakis replied: "I know they are. And even if they do I will deny I said it."

(By far this is the worse statement of all, because it shows how politicians demonize the press at times for daring to expose the truth).

The plan, according to the recording, was to hack into his own ministry's software to copy tax systems code. In order to achieve this, Varoufakis said that he hired a childhood friend who was a software expert to help with the planning.

(Please note that his childhood friend was from Columbia University. This is an important factor as will be explained below.)

After denying the reports at first, and then playing the role of a media victim, Varoufakis was finally forced to admit the truth after the recording came to light. In a statement that was posted on his blog, Varoufakis defends the contingency planning and slams the domestic and foreign media for indulging in "far-fetched articles that damage the quality of public debate".
     "Greece's Ministry of Finance would have been remiss had it made no attempt to draw up contingency plans," the statement said, adding the unit worked within government policy and its recommendations were aimed at keeping the country in the euro zone.
Meanwhile, and in a separate statement posted on Varoufakis' blog, Galbraith notes that he had (unofficially) worked on the top secret plan on the basis that the government was committed to negotiating within the euro zone. Apart from coming into contact with SYRIZA MP (and drachma lobbiest) Costas Lapavitsas Galbraith said in his post that his secret group had no cooperation with the radical Left Platform of SYRIZA and concluded its work in May.

And if that wasn't enough, on Tuesday Varoufakis told the Financial Times in an interview that as he was handing over the reins of the finance ministry to SYRIZA MP Euclid Tsakalotos on July 6, he presented him with a full account of the ministry’s projects, priorities and achievements during his five months in office. According to him, the Plan B payments system was also apparently part of this presentation but luckily no member of the press took any notice.

(He actually says this to the Financial Times!!!)
     "But when a subsequent telephone discussion with a large number of international investors, organised by my friend Norman Lamont and David Marsh of the official monetary and financial institutions forum, was leaked despite the Chatham House rule that we agreed with listeners, the press had a field day. Committed to unlimited openness and full transparency, I granted OMFIF permission to release the tapes.
     "While I understand the press’s excitement emanating from elements of that exchange, such as having to consider unorthodox means of gaining access to my own ministry’s systems, there is only one matter of significance from a public interest perspective. There is a hideous restriction of national sovereignty imposed by the troika of lenders upon Greek ministers who are denied access to departments of their ministries pivotal in implementing innovative policies. When sovereignty loss, due to unsustainable official debt, yields suboptimal policies in already stressed nations, one knows that there is something rotten in the euro’s kingdom." Financial Times
The confession has provoked a storm of reactions. On Monday, at least 24 members of the main opposition New Democracy party sent a formal request to Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to clarify whether he was aware of the plan to introduce Greece to a new national currency. if he had approved it and to also specify the actions he would take with regard to the political and criminal investigation of the case.

In a separate statement, the main opposition New Democracy party claims that specific elements within the ruling SYRIZA party had a hidden agenda for Grexit and used various “methods" that are dangerous to Greece's democracy and its national interests. At the same time ND called on the Greek Prime Minister and his younger coalition partner Panos Kammenos (leader of ANEL) to break their silence and finally come clean with “convincing and responsible explanations”.

On its part, the Potami party party called on Tsipras to confirm whether or not he was aware of Varoufakis’s plan since it was revealed on the recording that the plan was drawn up after consultations with the PM himself.

Without a doubt all this evidence has severely damaged the image of the SYRIZA party. Varoufakis' own admission that there were plans to “hack” into Greek taxpayers personal tax codes has sent Greece's political, financial and social world abuzz.

The news has also captured the attention of the the Greek justice system. A meeting that was convened by Chief Prosecutor of Greece Euterpe Koutzamani including leading senior magistrates and prosecutors, decided that the Supreme Court should turn to parliament to prosecute Yanis (with one "n"). As such the Supreme Court would turn to the Greek National Assembly for this very reason.

According to legal circles, Greek justice cannot automatically start formal proceedings against the former finance minister as this is not allowed under the provisions of the law on ministerial responsibility.

(In accordance with the law on the criminal responsibility of Greek MPs, parliament must first decide whether or not to conduct a preliminary investigation and withdraw the  immunity of the MP accused before the Supreme Court can begin prosecuting the case.)

Meanwhile, General Secretary for Public Revenues Katerina Savvaidou responded with an order for an urgent internal inquiry to be held under oath so as to investigate whether staff at the secretariat had committed illegal acts. According to an announcement, there will be an internal check of all IT systems to try and uncover whether any unauthorized accessing of data occurred.

And if that wasn't enough, there are also two lawsuits for treason which have already been filed against Yanis (with one "n") Varoufakis. The first by the non-parliamentary Telia party, former actor and mayor of Stilida Apostolos Gletsos and the second by Athenian lawyer Mr. Giannopoulos.

Regardless what decision parliament adopts, the Supreme Court will still go after all (non-political) persons involved in the drafting and implementation of this plan. As such expect to see action against Michalis Chatzitheodorou, Yanis Varoufakis’ childhood friend and information systems professor at the University of Colombia in the US, who was acting Chief Secretary for Information Services. As admitted by Varoufakis on the recording, Chatzitheodorou had developed the scheme to hack into the tax records of Greek citizens with the use of his own personal laptop.

Knowing very well that he will soon be faced with the law, Michalis Chatzitheodorou on Tuesday denied any “intervention in the information systems of the Treasury" claiming in a statement that all revelations regarding the hacking of the ministry systems are "absolutely untrue". Although Varoufakis did not outright name Chatzitheodorou during the infamous teleconference with the London-based Official Monetary and Financial Institutions Forum, his identity was made known via the Greek media.

During the teleconference, the former Greek finance minister described in detail the attempt to create a parallel banking system which would resort to the drachma “at a touch of the button”, if negotiations with Greece’s creditors failed.

On the role of Chatzitheodorou he said that the general secretariat of information systems was controlled by him directly.
     "I appointed a good friend of mine, a childhood friend of mine, who had become a professor of IT at Columbia University in the States, and so on, I put him there because I trusted him to develop the system. At some point, a week or so after we moved into the ministry, he calls me up and says to me: You know what, I control the machines, I control the hardware. I don’t control the software. The software belongs to the troika-controlled general secretariat for public revenues.
    "What do we do? So we had a meeting, just the two of us, nobody else knew. He said: Listen, if I ask for permission from them to start implementing this program then the troika will immediately know we are designing a parallel system. Well, I said, That won’t do, we don’t want to reveal our hand at this stage. So I authorised him, and you can’t tell anyone that, this is totally between us, to hack…"
In his statement Chatzitheodorou says that  "The General Secretariat of Information Systems and Logistics and me personally, have designed, let alone attempted, any kind of intervention to its systems." He also notes that "the General Secretariat for Information Systems has established procedures and strict standards that guarantee the security of personal data“

OMFIF forum on July 16th

During the 4th minute of the recording, Varoufakis begins to analyze the main points of his plan B. Just before the 5th minute, he goes into detail on how they were going to create alternative accounts of all Greek taxpayers, including the use of smart phone applications. In order to achieve this they planned to issue new pin codes, which in turn would have formed a parallel payment system. At 6 minutes into the recording, Varoufakis begins talking about the parallel banking system that would have allowed the government to act when the European Central Bank would close Greek banks and at 7 minutes into the recording he begins talking about his childhood friend whom he had appointed to hack the software program of his own ministry.

Here is the recording

It should be noted that before the media began broadcasting the recording, Varoufakis was denying all the reports and charging the opposition and the media of propaganda against him and the SYRIZA party. A few hours after the media disseminated the recording, he made a statement on his personal blog admitting that it was all true.

(His statement leaves it to be understood that instead of negotiating with Greece's creditors in the first few months after SYRIZA was elected to power, he was more concentrated on materializing his plan to return Greece to the drachma. Another interesting factor is that the statement was written in the third person.)

Here is his statement.
     "During the Greek government’s negotiations and until the referendum, Minister of Finance Yanis Varoufakis oversaw a working group with a remit to prepare contingency plans against the creditors’ efforts to undermine the Greek government and in view of forces at work within the euro zone to have Greece expelled from the euro. The working group was convened by the Minister, at the behest of the Prime Minister, and was coordinated by Professor James K. Galbraith."
Then the saga begins. Speaking as an outsider, the statement on Varoufakis claims that he was/is a victim of strong criticism from the media and that the government had no contingency plan in the case of Grexit.
     "Ever since Varoufakis announced the existence of the working group, the media indulged in far-fetched articles that damage the quality of public debate, attempting to describe the group as a ‘conspiracy’ working on the return to the national currency. This is defamation. The Ministry of Finance’s working group worked exclusively within the framework of government policy and its recommendations were always aimed at serving the public interest, at respecting the laws of the land, and at keeping the country in the euro zone."
The full text of Yanis Varoufakis’ statement in English and Greek is available here:
http: // ...

In addition to his own statement, Varoufakis published a public statement by Professor Galbraith in which he admits that he was a coordinator of this secret working group.

Commenting on the fresh evidence First Deputy Speaker Alexis Mitropoulos on Tuesday blamed Varoufakis for the austerity of the measures.
    "With his lack of modesty, his naivety, his zeal to showcase his own ideas it seems that he has hurt the Greek issue."
Mitropoulos said and added:"German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble and the creditors were likely aware of his intentions and as a result we should now accept these harsh measures and plan. Probably he had confided them or had expressed them as a threat, or as one of his plans," he said in statements to private MEGA TV.

HellasFappe's take on things

Frappers... A couple of years ago, a leap to death from the general secretary of the culture ministry almost brought down the entire government of Costas Karamanlis. For days the general secretariat's secret affair with one of his cabinet members made front page news in an attempt to discredit the government of Costas Karamanlis. While today a plan to return Greece to the drachma and take our economy back 2, or even 3 generations is described as being "propaganda" (and even an ingenious plan) by the same people who used the leap of death to crawl their way into power.

Obviously the severity of these two cases cannot be compared, yet there is no hysteria over Varoufakis' actions at all. One case involves a hot affair, and was a cause to bring down a government and the other involves the savings of Greek citizens and yet there is not a care in the world and the government and leadership of this country is not to blame Why? The answer is simple. The Left is in power and the Greek state is finally naked in the sense that it has always worked in favor of the progressive factions in Greece. No wonder all the unions are operated by the progressives.

Not even Spielberg could have come up with a better scenario. Think about it, a minister plans to devise a program to purposely exit Greece out of the Eurozone at the behest of the Prime Minister and admits this to hedge fund investors who we all know are waiting to prey on Greece like vultures. Yet not one nose is bleeding over the matter because hey... its not cool to be bothered with what the Left does because it is "progressive". It is insane!  Here is actual evidence of a planned coup by secret group, or as described by HF in previous articles as the 'drachma lobby" with hired foreign and domestic experts who are all somehow linked to Columbia University. The same university which George Papandreou also gave lectures at, and the same institution which is highly backed by none other than billionaire George Soros. Let us not forget that Soros brought down the Bank of England a few years ago, and we all know how much he wanted to bring down the Eurozone. Another interesting bit of information that was revealed on Tuesday involves an aide of the Clinton family who said that had Greece exited the Eurozone in 2010 (or under George Papandreou -as planned-) today Greece would have been a haven for business and an entirely different place. Should we also remind all of you that the Clintons are also highly backed by George Soros as well?

Imagine if all of this was happening under a conservative government. Greek cities would be thrown into complete chaos by swarms of anarchists (such as the December riots 2008), the public sector would have been staging protests all over the country, schools would have already shut down, half of Greece would have been ablaze and the West (US and UK) would have even called back their Ambassadors. But no... Now that a progressive government is in power, and a minister has admitted devising a plan to destroy everything Greeks have worked for for the past 20+ years -with the supposed green light of the prime minister himself- everything is peachy. The media is at fault for making a big deal out of the case, and no one should be concerned because according to progressives this move was not only right, it was also "ingenious".

Greek citizens may have once again been duped by the progressive left, but luckily they are now beginning to realize that they were also conned into voting "NO" at the recent referendum a few weeks ago because -as revealed over the past few days- the overall plan from day one was to return Greece to the drachma! It is going to be quite (sadly) entertaining to see the reaction of Greek tax payers when the Leftist Memorandum comes to pass (especially those who voted for the government). The previous governments were traitors, they were "germanotsoliades" they dared to vote YES to stay in the Euro, but no banks ever closed, our economy was beginning to show a surplus and the Greek state finally began to shrink.

No wonder no one takes this country seriously at times. There is no logic behind this kind of thinking, only madness. Whatever the Left does is acceptable and whatever the Right does is not. It just proves how divided we are as a society,. how the civil war never ended in Greece, and how a few wannabes play on this to not only widen the gap between us, but to also bank on it.

Greece may have given birth to democracy but it definitely suffers from Varoufakis bourgeois style rock stars who live for five minutes of fame at the expense of the masses. This country has actually been suffering from this for 40 years now and the Left has been very successful in gathering support because they present it as something cool, something progressive, something different.

Digest it, political parties are companies and sell ideologies. They do not care about me or you or any one of us, all they care about is their five minutes of fame and power (the money also helps). The repercussions of what happened in July will begin to surface once tourism dies down, and Greek citizens realize how much damage was made.

We need to rid ourselves once and for all from this type of thinking. We don't need foreign armies to destroy this country, we do a pretty good job of poking our own eyes all by ourselves. 

References: Kathimerini, YouTube, SkaiTv, MEGA Tv, Reuters, BBC, The TOC, ANA-MPA, Proto-Thema, Enikos

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