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Additional info for Greece, 1941–49: From Resistance to Civil War: The Strategy of the Greek Communist Party

Example text

Towards the end of the occupation period it reached such proportions that it became virtually a de facto government and consequently a rival of the regime in exile. Efforts to create such a front had begun even before the Sixth Plenum had launched its appeal. Dimitrios Glinos, the KKE's intellectual ideologist, had in June 1941 contacted most of the leaders of the traditional bourgeois parties in an effort to persuade them to join such a national front. Most of these politicians, however, who included Republican leaders like Kanellopoulos, Papandreou, Sofoulis and Kafandaris, refused, distrusting the political aims of the KKE.

74 Their only act of 'resistance' was to sign a statement in March 1942 declaring that the King must await the result of a plebiscite before returning. The purpose of this statement was clear: by presenting a common front which transcended the inter-war republican/monarchist divisions, the traditional politicians wanted to capitalize on the anti-monarchist popular sentiment that had developed in reaction to the King's collaboration with Metaxas, and thus challenge EAM's growing power and monopoly of the republican cause that threatened to relegate them to permanent obsolescence.

As Karas notes in his short biography of Zachariadis, 'this letter constitutes one of the most important documents in the history of the KKE . . 51 What is more, Zachariadis' letter gave the KKE the necessary 'national and patriotic' credentials which proved invaluable during the occupation. 52 Even the anti-Zachariadist Pavlos Nefeloudis had to admit that Zachariadis' letter 'raised the prestige of the party to a great extent in the eyes of 20 Greece, 1941-49: From Resistance to Civil War the Greek people' and thus 'laid the most solid foundation for the creation of the National Resistance epic'.

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