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Additional reply to Mozere comments

Reader comment on item: Kastelorizo - Mediterranean Flashpoint?
in response to reader comment: regional cooperation

Submitted by Alexandros (United Kingdom), Mar 2, 2012 at 08:05

An additional reply to Mozere

Except from my comment "not exactly" I would like to post one more comment as a complete answer to all Mozere's posts. I just read all his comments and realized that he is Turk and I am so glad about this because I have the opportunity to see the Turkish side of history and I am glad to say that this is a falsified aspect and I would like to prove this with this answer and also make my point that consistently Turkish side uses history falsely and in a nationalist way.

Dear Mozere,

You are really unlucky because I come from the exact city of Tripolitsa, today Tripolis. This is the only slaughter of Turkish population by Greeks. Although, they never surrendered they were invaded, This of course does not mean that it was a good action. It was recognised as a bad action from the first moment when the chief general of Greeks, Theodoros Kolokotronis in his memoirs admits the slaughter and he regrets his incapability to foresee and hold the hate that the Greek warriors saw towards the Turks and Albanians expressing the suppression of almost 400 years. As for the Jewish population you correctly refer to, the explanation has nothing to do with any racist facts, the simple explanation is that they were slaughtered because all the people owed a lot of money to them and some saw an opportunity to kill the unfortunate people, the same happened to Greeks that were cooperating with the Turks for financial benefits, of course this is not an excuse and was also recognised and condemned and that is why similar actions were never repeated.

In the case of Thessaloniki. In the first Balkan wars there was an agreement of the Balkan countries, that whatever was conquered by an army it was hold by them. Thessaloniki was a multicultural, as you very successfully write, city. It was surrendered to the Greeks because the Greek army came first and the Turkish army had no chance to win a possible battle. The majority of the population in the city was always Greek as was the name. The Muslims left the city with the exchange of populations as was agreed for the Muslims and Christian populations in the Greek part of Macedonia and Hepirus and Turkey except from the Muslims in West Thrace and the Chriistians of Istanbul. What happened to those people is a different story though, do not you think? The Jewish of Thessaloniki were not "cleared" by the Greeks but by the Nazis, even though Greeks tried to save most of them and actually there is still a basketball team with the name of Maccabi in Thessaloniki owned by Greek Jewish. The same happened to Ioannina, in a city I lived for 9 years as an undergraduate and a PhD student later, you see even though Greeks had a dictatorship back then and the Nazis were winning the war, the country decided to stand against all odds and fight the Nazis and the fascists, that was something we never regret, even though we still pay the prize. The Unfortunate Greek Jews did not believe the hate, people were trying to convince them that they should leave or hide but in the beginning they could not imagine that things would so bad, they did not believe that there were extermination camps and they did not react quickly.

The Slavic populations as the Greek populations in today Slavic countries, either moved or just followed the ways of the country they remained into, they were Christians and it was not so hard at that time, the Greeks in south Albania still remain in their villages as Albanian citizens and in Macedonia the Greeks moved to the Greek part and the Slavs and Bulgarians moved to the Slavic and Bulgarian part of Macedonia respectively. This did not happen in peace with the Bulgarians and this was the second Balkan war. There is no Slavic minority as you say because if there are some people who think themselves as Slavs living in Macedonia they are just a few and they are free to say and believe what they want, there is a similar thing in FYROM with people who support that are Greek and actually in important numbers, but in any case these people do not suggest ethnic minorities as such minorities are not accepted by The Lausanne treaty. And that is why the minority in Albania is not considered Greek but Christian. In conclusion people can be what they feel to be if they feel Greeks in FYROM that is fine if they feel Slavs in Greeks that is fine as well, as long as they live by the law.

Also, the Vlachs that remained in Greece eventually their culture became part of the Greek and you might still find old people speaking Vlach in some villages and I suppose that something similar, but the other way around of course, happened with the Greek population in Romania. For these people it was easy to adapt since they were Christians and Byzantines.

The problem is that the Turkish side does not recognise the crimes committed by them during all these wars and later. And the importance of this action is not to make you feel bad, inferior or Barbarian, the importance is to recognise these actions, condemn them and avoid similar actions in the future, not avoid, avoid is not correct, make sure that such things will never happen again. Instead, Armenian genocide, the genocide of the Greeks living in Pontus the massacre of Smyrni or Izmir today, the pogroms of Istanbul much later and the occupation of Cyprus, are actions that Turkey keeps denying and also the existence of 15million Kurds. All these are unacceptable.

As for some situations where there was a kind of military collaboration and you also say "the Greeks wanted the Ottomans back" the truth is that they wanted no-one back but they did not have any choice. I did not meant that the Venetian or the French occupation were good, there is not a good occupation it was less harsh, in some cases.

And now lets see what is happening in the Aegean. The Lausanne treaty , the 1947 treaty and the law of the sea are crystal clear. Except from the Islands of Imbros and Tenedos all the other islands and rocks belong to Greece. Only the rocks to in a distance of 3 nautical miles from the coasts of modern Turkey are under Turkish control. So Imia are Greek. In 1947 the Dodecanese (habited and inhabited islands and rocks, moved from Italian to Greek sovereignty, this means that Agathonisi and Farmakonisi are Greek and so is Kastelorizo with all the surrounding rocks. The law of the sea gives the right to Greece to increase its sovereignty in 12 miles and all habited or being able to sustain human live on them have the right of EEZ. The islands are not on any continental shelf because they are not floating.

These are not threats towards Turkey, you write "Turkish fears of Greece is that it will use its Islands to cut Turkey off open seas and deny its rights to the continental shelf". How my friend is this going to happen, this argument has no logic behind it, the Law of the sea is clear again the law of innocent passage makes sure that no Turkish boat will have any problem to cross the Aegean in any direction, and the same goes for any other ship in the world, I can not understand though the purpose of Turkish warships near Athens even on international waters, because this has happened a lot of times, especially the last 2 years, why this provocation? You have a continental shelf but also do the islands, but no Turkey is not pleased with that, they are pleased with that when we talk about the Black sea actually, but not in the case of the Aegean sea.

In another post you speak about Balkan Mafia, you fail to recognize though the relations of the Balkan mafia with Turkey, because most of this Mafia acts in Kosovo, and FYROM and those countries leaderships are very strongly supported by the Turkish government even though some of them are implicated in war crimes and in drug, organ, weapon and human trafficking.

In FYROM's case also the Turkish governments supports the action that specializes into, history falsification. There is a person who is raising a whole population with lies, lies that even the older generations of this country accept, but Turkey supports. Because the main difference between FYROM and Greece is not the name for the name, is what this government supports because of the name. My name is Alexandros and I know what it means because my language kept its ancient routes whoever wants to be part of the ancient Macedonian tradition is Greek it can not be otherwise. The same policy is followed in Caucasus and even inside the country, because some tourist guides in Turkey suggest, that the ancient Greek temples, in modernTurkey, were built by Turks, so imagine what the Turkish government teaches in schools. We know, Turks live in this region for almost 1000 years at least respect those who lived there before and at the same time with you, nobody has any ambitions to go to war and expand, nobody but you. No more falsification of history and no more nationalism. This road does not lead anywhere.

You also write for collaboration. Usually in Greece Ministers do not have very good ideas, but recently one of them responsible for tourism had an excellent one. Having foreseen the Chinese and Indian growth and from the statistics, noticed an increase in tourists coming from these parts of the world, so he proposed to Egypt and Turkey, Cyprus and Israel as well, I assume, that they should create common package holidays so that the people will have an opportunity to meat the whole east Mediterranean civilization in one visit, making the whole process more attractive, well Turkish government seemed reluctant and Egypt as well.

If Turkey does not manage to control the internal strong nationalism, then I can tell you from now that this adventure is not going to have a good end, and we are not going to harm you, we do not intend and we have other problems to attend, but others will. This is the experience of the Greek history, if you want, in 1922 Greek society was much like Turkish today, we lived a massive destruction as a nation because of the clash between nationalists, all wanted expansion but in different ways, in the end we ruined ourselves, the super-powers of the time were frustrated from this nationalism. We realized that we should cooperate and live in peace, we had our country that we lacked for centuries, it was time to build and heal. Do you have to live a similar experience, do you have to lead possible bloodsheds in the whole region so to realize similar things. I do not know.

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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