Wednesday 28 October 2020

ημέρα του όχι

Though the response of the Greek prime minister to the Italian ambassador regarding Mussolini’s ultimatum to allow the Axis armies to occupy strategic points in the Hellenic lands delivered on this day in 1940 was a bit more bellicose and francophone—“Alors, c’est la guerre!”—than the popular account that the prime minister answered with a simple and laconic No—όχι/ohi, it was the latter that resounded in the streets and shouted first by members of the resistance then by all. The refusal was met by Italian troops stationed at the Albanian border invading Greek territory, beginning the Balkan campaign of World War II. This act of defiance, rejection of fascism is commemorated annually in Greece, Cyprus and the diaspora as the “Anniversary of the No!”