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Greek Civil War - Research Paper Example

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Greek Civil War The Greek Civil War, the result of political instability in Greece during the early twentieth century, was waged in a two-step battle for gaining power by the Greek communists between December 1944 to January 1945 and from 1946 to 1949 (Encyclopedia Britannica, “Greek Civil War,” par…
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Download file to see previous pages The Communist Party found this opportunity to grab power by creating National Liberation Front, called the EAM. The other group opposing the communist viewpoint belonged to the EDES. The EDES got support from the Britain as Britain was against the expansion of communism. Winston Churchill, the then Prime-Minister of Britain met with Joseph Stalin of Germany in 1944. In a political and diplomatic bargain it was decided between both the premiers that Germany would get a stronghold in Romania if Germany supported the United Kingdom’s hold in Greece. The Germans had been there in Greece since the World War II, started to recede back from Greece without providing any concrete assistance to communists to remain in power although communists were quite powerful politically and militarily at that time. It started a battle between the British forces and the EAM on December 2, 1944 resulting in a win for the nationalists and reduction of the communist stronghold on Greece (Leonard par. 1). The first stage of civil war started some months before the Germany forces were evacuating Greece in October 1944. Parties to the Civil War in Greece were two leading guerrilla forces, the communist-supported EAM-ELAS (National Liberation Front–National Popular Liberation Army) and the EDES (Greek Democratic National Army).The EAM-ELAS overpowered all opposing guerrilla and political enemies except the EDES in early 1944 and established its rule in the Greek mountains, which meant end of the rule of the Greek King and his government in exile. With the withdrawal of troops by Germany, the British government supported the communists and the royal Greek guerrillas to make a coalition government in Athens but was unable to dissolve the guerrilla forces, which resulted in a bitter civil war in Athens on December 3 (Encyclopedia Britannica, “Greek Civil War,” par. 2). One of the reasons of the war was that the communists were against the British proposal of disarming the ELAS, therefore, declared a general strike in Athens on December, 1944. It led to a conflict between the police and the ELAS. A ceasefire was announced when Winston Churchill came to Athens resulting in withdrawal of ELAS guerrillas from Athens. An accord was made on February 12, 1945 according to which ELAS was supposed to surrender its weapons in fourteen days (ThinkQuest par. 2). This fierce battle brought the EAM-ELAM in a winning position everywhere in Greece except Athens and Thessaloniki, where the British military controlled the deteriorating situation with great difficulty (Encyclopedia Britannica, “Greek Civil War,” par. 2). In February 1945, the communists announced the disseverment of their forces in a conference but did not participate in the general election in Greece in March 1946 resulting in a royalist majority (Encyclopedia Britannica, “Greek Civil War,” par. 3). The March 1946 elections were biased towards EDES to which the communists reacted by forming the Democratic Party of Greece (DA), and issued a statement that they would continue fighting until democratic forces prevail upon and rule Greece. Initially, Communists were leading ahead because of support from the neighboring Yugoslavia and communists’ strong presence in the Northern Greece (Leonard par. 2). Other important political happening included plebiscite in September 1946 establishing the rule of the Greek King once again. Communists who had gone hidden earlier once again waged ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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