February 12, 2011

“It is known that we Greeks are born conspiracy theorists"

“It is known that we Greeks are born conspiracy theorists"
George Tenet

In an interview given in 2007 to U.S. television station CBS, former CIA director states: “…I am Greek, and it is known that we Greeks are born conspiracy theorists." Another Greek, or more specifically a Koutzovlach from the Pindus Mountains, Nicholas Gatzoyiannis, clearly affirms this assertion today. With a great shamelessness, he enters Albania by posing as a representative of the "North Epirus" phantom.
Since the ancient times, the Chameria province, including the “Three Black Rocks” quarter in Arta has been inhabited by Albanians. So there is only Southern Albania, and this is confirmed by historians as well as the League of Nations in 1924. In 1925, former Prime Minister of Greece Pangalos acknowledged that Albanians live in Chameria.  In 1972, the Mayor of Gumenica, speaking Albanian to the Albanian ambassador of Greece, stated that all around that town there are over 40 villages that speak only Albanian at home.

In September 2010, I was allowed to enter Greece and visit to Chameria thanks to my American passport. I say this because even though it has been over 66 years "Greek democracy" denies entry to its former citizens. I conversed with nostalgia in the Albanian language (or as we call it gluha e Perëndisë) with many local cohabitants wherever I went, Parga, Gumenica and in the villages of Paramithia, Filat, Margellici and Preveza.   When Uncle Pano from Shëndjellë (not Aia Kiriaki) told me that even the priest speaks Albanian, I added that the Metropolitan of Chameria 130 years ago, in 1877, had translated the New Testament in Albanian. In Paramithia, I was not able to find the mass grave of over 600 persons massacred in 1944 by Napoleon Zervas’ soldiers. Through the conversations I held in Albanian with the locals, I realized that they really felt the crimes committed against the innocent Albanian population of the Muslim faith. Local fellow Christians in today's Chameria are not even allowed to learn Albanian in school or to be registered as Albanians.
In asking for a population census based on religious faiths in Albania, Greek-American Nikos Gatzoyiannis deliberately forgets the fact that the U.S. does not count in its official census individuals on the basis of their religious faith and they are not discriminated or looked down upon because of their personal religious beliefs, or their national origin. I learned this when I worked as a U.S. Census worker in year 2000 and 2010. When I came to America in 1998, I was granted political asylum because of the persecution that my family suffered from Greeks.
Nikos Gatzoyianis in a book dedicated to his mother, Eleni writes, "Thousands of innocent people like my mother had been killed during the war and now their murderers were living in Greece, their sleep untroubled by fear of reprisals.”   As a comparison, in my book "Cham Traces" it is written: “Beside my mother being killed, they murdered my father, my two brothers, one sister and two of my grandparents, and to the honor of the sanguinary Napoleon Zervas, they have erected a memorial, with him mounting a horse with his hand pointing north, - towards Albania. " I would accompany Nicholas Gatzoyanis if we were to go and seek justice for our people that were massacred and killed unjustly in Greece. I would also go to show my former compatriots that the U.S.A that sheltered us as well as millions of others is the land of true freedom. Without the Anglo-American intervention, Greece would have been much poorer than communist Albania. Then, they would be welcomed as laborers in Albania, without prejudice to their religion, because BESA (loyalty) of the Albanians exists there.
Although Nikos Gatzoyianis has lived over 65 years in the U.S., he does not present himself as an American, even though he changed his last name to Gage, but instead presents himself as a Greek-born - as a conspiracy theorist. He goes to Albania not to congratulate the Greek minority, which worked for over 100 years as laborers in the properties of Albanian landlords, that enjoys the best minority rights and privileges,- even more than rights than Albanians, but to plot against Albania. By taking advantage of the poverty inherited by the anti-Albanian Communist regime, he and modern St. Kozmas-Greek bishop Gianoulatos,- attempt to deceive poverty-stricken Albanians to change their religion and ethnicity. With the infamous communist "law" Nr.1501, in 1992 donating Albanian lands to Greek newcomers, by denying the existence of Albanian Chameria, they seek to continue the medieval-Byzantine invasions for a Greater Greece - "Megalidea”.
Nikos Gatzoyiannis, as a born conspirator, deliberately distorts history when he tries to compare Albanian Chameria with the Czech Sudetens. By popular referendum in 1938, Sudetens requested and joined Germany, and with the approval of the Anglo-French they became Hitler's collaborators. Consequently, after World War II, inhabitants of those territories were deported to Germany by the Soviet army. On the other hand, the Cham province remained under the rule of the Greek government which collaborated with Nazi occupiers. Cham boys and girls were lined up in the Anti-Fascist movement along with the Greeks and Macedonians. Their only "fault" was that Chameria Battalion fought for 56 consecutive days against German forces in July – August of 1943 in defense of their homeland, Albania.
So the true collaborators of the killings and massacres of our parents, not only sleep undisturbed but also pride themselves for what they have committed. However, what Greek chauvinists "forget" or distort, others have absorbed in their heart and minds, such as the patriot Shpetim Idrizi, as young honorable member of the Albanian Parliament.  Mr. Idrizi presented irrefutable arguments by raising the Cham issue in the Council of Europe- as genocide and ethnic cleansing of the Albanian Cham population from their thousand-year-old ancestral homes.
S. Bollati
NY, February 2011

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