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The Greek rebellionism

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  Quote rider Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: The Greek rebellionism
    Posted: 20-Aug-2005 at 10:31

As the Greeks made guerilla war with ottomans in the 1921; the Europeans were watching with interest how the outcome would fit with their plans. The Greeks were making war in ancient stiles but when the Europeans had asked why do not they take up arms and meet them on battlefield they had said thus:

..if we stand as Europeans before the Turksih muskets then we will all die and lose the war in any case

as

the Turkish did fight aswell in ancient manners - they did not care of men they would lose for their cause.

Most of the libertianists had hoped for a second Thermopylae, so they said that

the Greeks might learn again the use of Phalanx and use it

for a heroius victory.

Actually, i think that Greeks just simply hadn't got the power to win the fight then as they themselves said aswell

... if we life, we may fight another day....
???

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  Quote Mortaza Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20-Aug-2005 at 10:40

I think that greeks were intelligent, of course as a Army they have no chance.

... if we life, we may fight another day....

well said.

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  Quote Yiannis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20-Aug-2005 at 11:00
Originally posted by rider

As the Greeks made guerilla war with ottomans in the 1921;

  1821

 

What are these quotes? It was maily guerilla war but it later involved piched battles and sea-battles.

 

The basis of a democratic state is liberty. Aristotle, Politics

Those that can give up essential liberty to obtain a temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. Benjamin Franklin
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  Quote rider Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20-Aug-2005 at 13:22
These quotes are from the 'History of Warfare' by John Keegan. And badly translated that is. Just few things i wondered around.
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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20-Aug-2005 at 14:10

That piece you showed us resembles also the current situation, only do the Greeks actually still think they stand a chance.

May piece last



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  Quote rider Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20-Aug-2005 at 14:59
What pice may last?? Maybe you meant peace??
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  Quote Constantine XI Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21-Aug-2005 at 01:07

The Greeks were vastly outnumbered numerically and most of their soldiers were klephts, criminal outlaws who had taken up arms against the professional Turkish army. To have engaged the Turks on an open field would have been utterly stupid. Using the terrain, ambushes and surprises, the Greeks achieved some impressive victories until the arrival of the Egyptians.

One English observer whose name escapes me recorded of the Greek fighters a number of virtues, including frugality, toughness and resolve. After quoting these qualities he then said "the Greeks, for all that, are not brave. But neither would anyone else be in their position". What he basically meant was that their situation required unconventional military tactics, rather than lining up on an open field and letting the balance of numbers defeat them.

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  Quote rider Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21-Aug-2005 at 04:07
Yes, i believe that Constantine got the right point, but why didn't europe come to aid?
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  Quote Yiannis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21-Aug-2005 at 05:08

Originally posted by rider

why didn't europe come to aid?

They did, in 1827 a joint, English, French and Russian fleet destroyed the Egyptian/Ottoman one at the sea-battle of Navarino. That sealed the course of the war as the Egyptian had now no means of re-supplying their army. reason for the intervention was their will to interfere in Eastern Mediterranean affairs as well as pressure from the public opinion in their countries which was in favor of the Greek cause, especially after the massacres of the Ottoman army at Chios, Psara and Casos islands.

Many thousand Europeans fought (and many died) in the Greek rebel forces as volunteers, sometimes forming individual brigades. They were called "Philellenes" and a simple search for the word in google will provide you tones of information. Most prominent amongst them was Lord Byron (his poetry here: http://readytogoebooks.com/Byron.html) . He eventually died of illness in Messolonghi, where his heart was buried.

 

 



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The basis of a democratic state is liberty. Aristotle, Politics

Those that can give up essential liberty to obtain a temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. Benjamin Franklin
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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21-Aug-2005 at 16:36

The most interesting wars of independence of history are the Greek and Turkish ones in my opinion. No other nations had to fight each other both as invaders and natives to get their own independences. First the Greeks had to fight Turks in their lands, then Turks against Greeks in Turkish lands.

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  Quote rider Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-Aug-2005 at 06:41
Navarino, had heard of it but didn't know more. Byron, wasn't he aswell a great poet? And i didn't know the philellenes word in English as they are in estononian - 'Filhellenistid' so i thought it would be similiar.
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  Quote Constantine XI Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-Aug-2005 at 20:27

Byron was the man of his times, a romantic in the Age of Romanticism. He died without ever having fired a shot in battle though.

Also of note is that Russia was throughout the war either actually fighting the Turks of threatening the Turkish border with troops, tying up huge numbers of Turkish troops who would otherwise have probably crushed the rebellion quite easily.

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  Quote Yiannis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Aug-2005 at 07:28
Originally posted by Constantine XI

Also of note is that Russia was throughout the war either actually fighting the Turks of threatening the Turkish border with troops, tying up huge numbers of Turkish troops who would otherwise have probably crushed the rebellion quite easily.

Partially true. Remember that the Tzar allowed Ottomans to occupy the bordering the Danube countries, after Ipsilantes failed uprising attempt.

The main reason that the Greek revolution was able to live it's first days, was that the ottomans were tied up fighting Ali Pasha of Ioannina, who wanted to create his own state, rather than the Russians.

The basis of a democratic state is liberty. Aristotle, Politics

Those that can give up essential liberty to obtain a temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. Benjamin Franklin
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  Quote kotumeyil Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Aug-2005 at 07:38

At that time there was the restoration period in Europe. The empires restored their power and there was a high conservative pressure on the liberal intellectuals. They (the liberal intellectuals) couldn't act in their own countries freely and they idealised the Greek fight against the Ottomans in a romantic way...



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  Quote Constantine XI Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26-Aug-2005 at 00:54
The romanticism is quite interesting, but it wasn't the flood of Western support some make it out to be. I see Navarino as the only decisive help the West gave the Greeks (though it was THE decisive engagement of the war). French naval officers were found to be giving critical advice to the forces in the Ottoman navy. The largest contingent of Philhellines were massacred under Botsaris. Investment in the newly created Greece was quite lacking too, most Europeans preferring to invest their money in newly independent Latin America.
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  Quote Phallanx Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02-Sep-2005 at 15:35
While there was assistance in the Navarino battle there were also those that tried to take advantage and actually did.

The 2 RICARDO brothers (Josheph and Samson) bankers, based in England (during the PM of G.Canning)  tried to take advantage of the country's need in cash and offered to loan money after asking as mortgage a large part of Hellinic land, to be exact they asked for  6.000.000 'stremmata' (1 stramma = 1000 sq.meters) so each 'stremma' was estimated to be worth 1/5th of a sterling. The area in question was the entire district of Corinth....
They finally gave 800,000 sterlins at an interest rate of 5% per month (Feb/21/1824)

From the amount mentioned, only 298,700 ever reached Hellinic hands, so a second loan was issued.

The amount agreed for this second loan was 2,800,000 again under the same bloodsucking terms but neither did this loan ever come to Hellinic hands as a total. The Ricardo's offered to manage the money and only spent 816,00 of the amount that was agreed, since the rest was shared between them, the 'negotiators' and other wanna-be 'philHellines'.

Since Lord Byron was mentioned above, let's look into one of his poems that depicts these actions perfectly:

THE AGE OF BRONZE

How rich is Britain !   not indeed in mines,

Or peace or plenty, corn or oil or wines;

No land of Canan, full of milk and honey,

Nor ( save in paper shekels ) ready money:

But let us not to own the truth refuse,

Was ever Christian land so rich in Jews?

Those parted with their teeth to good King John,

And now, ye kings they kindly draw your own;

All states, all things, all sovereigns they control,'

And waft a loan "from Indus to the pole."

The banker, broker, baron, brethen, speed

To aid these bankrupt tyrants in their need.
-----------------------

Interestingly enough, when independance was finally achieved, records show ONLY ONE COIN in the country's treasury after it's independance.


Edited by Phallanx
To the gods we mortals are all ignorant.Those old traditions from our ancestors, the ones we've had as long as time itself, no argument will ever overthrow, in spite of subtleties sharp minds invent.
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  Quote Constantine XI Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02-Sep-2005 at 19:53
Quite correct, the terms of the loan were unfair. But there was mismanagement at both ends of the scale. When the cash did arrive in Greece the soldiers clamoured for new decorative uniforms and their leaders spent the cash on this, which was fairly frivolous. Instead the tiny monies which did trickle through should have been carefully conserved and used to buy arms and other more necessary materials.
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  Quote Phallanx Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03-Sep-2005 at 10:54
Well, to be honest I've never heard this "new decorative uniforms" version before, but it is possibly true there was a mismanagment in the early years of the country's existance.
All we really need to do is simply look at the names of the bankers in Zakynthos to whom the loans were issued by both the Lonfoun and Ricardo (see: Jacob Logothetis and Samuel Varf)

Anyway, out of the first loan, some 500.000 were held as interest and expenses, while from the second some 600.000 were spent to buy ships that never did exist and of course never arrived. Those Ricardo bros. knew what they were doing.

There was a third loan given on the enforced King Otto's arrival (to pay off his 3500 'escorts') . This time some 65.000.000 gold francs were allegedly given from which interest and expenses were 35.000.000 that were extracted before the loan even began it's 'journey' towards Hellas.

Loans continued to keep pouring in during the Otto and the later enforced Glucksberg reign and of course tax rates were always going higher, untill 1893 when we naturally went bankrupt.

These loansharks were, up to some 25yrs ago, getting approx. 40-45 % of the country's budget, to pay off loans that had been paid several times over the original ammount..

Unfair, definitely, but I'd say 'bloodsucking terms' seems more correct.......


Edited by Phallanx
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  Quote Phallanx Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03-Sep-2005 at 18:19
MESSOLOGGI: THE LAST DAYS BEFORE THE SORTIE

From the middle of February (1826), many families began to run out of bread. A woman from Missolonghi, named Varvarina, which took care of an ill woman and of my full brother Mitros, had run out of food and secretly, with two other families form Missolonghi, slaughtered a donkey, a foal, and ate it.
I found them eating; I asked where they had found the meat and was horrified to hear that it was a donkey.
A company of soldiers from Kravara had a dog, and, they too, secretly, slaughtered and ate it. This was also spread.
As the hunger grew day by day, the superstition about eating impure animals waned and people started openly now slaughtering horses, mules and donkeys and even selling them a pound per oka (1280 grams) with great demand. Three days later the animals had finished.
About the end of February, some soldiers had 2-3 okas of flour (each) and others nothing.
A committee was appointed to search all the houses, even in the trunks of the families and whatever flour was found to collect it so that it could be shared to everyone, soldiers and citizens, children and adults, in such a way that the food could be given out equally.
Having searched all the houses one by one, I found only 600 okas and upto 600 okas in sacks, that is 1200. This flour was given out with a tea cup as a measure. In addition, a cup of broad beans were shared out. So, they began mixing these few broad beans and flour in the pot and added crushed crabs.
The partner of the typographer Mr G. Mestheneas, who stayed at our place, slaughtered and ate a cat and made his errand boy Stornari kill another. He was the one that told the others to do the same thing and in a few days there was no cat at all. The doctor from Lefkas (P. Stephanitsis) cooked his dog with oil, of which there was plenty, and praised it as the most tasteful food.
The soldiers had become insolent and grabbed dogs or cats they found in their way. [...]
Around 15 March we began eating sea weed. We boiled them five times until the bitter taste was gone and ate them with vinegar and oil like a salad, but also mixed with crab broth.
Some people began eating mice, and whoever could catch one was satisfied. Unfortunately, there were no frogs.
The lack of food caused the increase of diseases, mouth-ache and arthritis. This was our condition when the letter of our envoys at Nauplion arrived, suggesting us to hold on for 12 days and if necessary to eat each other. [...]
That day a man from Kravara cut meat from the thigh of a murdered man and ate it".

N. Kasomouli,Enthymimata stratiotika tis epanastaseos ton Ellinon. Apo ta 1821 mechri ton 1833, vol. 2, ed. G. Vlachogiannis, Athens, 1940, p. 241-242, 242-243 and 256 
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  Quote Constantine XI Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03-Sep-2005 at 18:34

Originally posted by Phallanx



Unfair, definitely, but I'd say 'bloodsucking terms' seems more correct.......

I agree with you entirely. There was mismanagement at both ends. The British were greedy for an return on their investment, the Greeks were totally impoverished and were now suddenly given a huge amount of money (looking at any modern African nation it doesn't take a genius to realize that people who have no experience with large amounts of cash tend to squander it). In the end it caused bad blood which was a shame, but the British partially made amends with their intervention at Navarino. The French have something to answer for also, allowing their naval officers to offer advice to the Egyptians and Turks which resulted in shattering devastation for the Greek side.

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