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Table of Contents
According to an Anti-Defamation League survey, Greece ranks among the top anti-Semitic countries in the world, with 69% of Greeks experiencing some form of negative feelings towards Jewish people. I see many articles trying to explain the causes of Greek anti-Semitism. They all offer long and silly explanations, and since I happen to be Greek, and I happen to know the real causes, I would like to make a contribution on the subject and explain the roots of Greek anti-Semitism. I believe that the causes of anti-Semitism are very similar in all European countries, and I hope that by explaining the situation in Greece, I will help other people understand the true causes of anti-Semitism in their countries too. I am not saying that there are no differences across various European countries, but I believe the main reasons are always the same and that’s exactly what I will try to demonstrate with this essay.
The Rise of Andreas Papandreou
Greece has traditionally been a pro-Arab country, and she actually voted against Israel in the 1947 United Nations resolution for the Partition of Palestine, because there was a large number of Greeks living in Egypt, because Greece was exporting a large part of its agricultural production to the Arab world, and because Greece was dependent on the Arab countries for oil. You can read a summary of the Greek Israeli relations from 1947 in the following article.
And here is another longer summary of the Greek Israeli relations.
However even though Greece was definitely a pro-Arab country, it was not as biased against Israel as it is today. However this changed with the rise in power of the socialist leader Andreas Papandreou. Andreas Papandreou, an ex-communist himself, surrendered Greece to the hands of communists. Or to be more accurate he surrendered the country to ex-communists, who had moved to the socialist party PASOK, and who were no longer calling themselves communists.
The rise of Andreas Papandreou and his communists in power changed dramatically the Greek foreign policy towards the Palestine Conflict. When he became prime minister in 1981, he officially recognized the Palestinian Liberation Organization leader, Yasser Arafat, who at the time was considered as a terrorist by all European leaders. And he did not recognize Israel de jure. Greece only recognized Israel de facto in the 1950s, and only the conservative leader Konstantinos Mitsotakis offered Israel de jure recognition in 1990. Until 1990 the Greek-Israeli diplomatic relations were at the consular and not the ambassador level as you can see at the following Wikipedia link.
As you can read in section 4.2 “Non Diplomatic Recognition-Greece” of the above Wikipedia link, “President Karolos Papoulias has stated that Greece ultimately supports the creation of a Palestinian state alongside Israel. Under previous governments, Greece garnered a reputation as a staunch supporter of the Palestinian cause. Within the wider Arab–Israeli conflict, Andreas Papandreou maintained a stronger stand against Israel than any other government in the European Community. Diplomatic relations were founded with the PLO in 1981, while relations with Israel were maintained only at the consular level until Greece’s formal recognition of Israel in 1990 under Mitsotakis”. At the following legal-dictionary link you can read the differences between Ambassadors and Consuls.
In section “Ambassadors and Consuls” you can read the following:
“An ambassador is the foreign diplomatic representative of a nation who is authorized to handle political negotiations between his or her country and the country where the ambassador has been assigned.
A consul is the commercial agent of a nation, who is empowered only to engage in business transactions and not political matters in the country where he or she is stationed”.
Therefore Andreas Papandreou and his communists, immediately recognized Yasser Arafat, who was considered a terrorist by all other European leaders, and did not recognize Israel de jure, something that all other European countries had long done, including the very socialist France. At the following link you can read an article which was written in 1982 describing the relationship between Andreas Papandreou and Yasser Arafat.
As a consequence all the extremely rich socialist dictators of the Middle East were indebted to Andreas Papandreou for his support of the Arab countries, at a time that Greece had already joined the European Union and could bring the Arab causes to the heart of Europe. It is therefore no surprise that the Arab leaders treated Andreas Papandreou like a king, with the strong friendship between Andreas Papandreou and Muammar Gaddafi, the socialist dictator of Libya, being the most famous example. In section “Timeline” of the following Wikipedia link, you can read that the main goal of Gaddafi’s foreign policy was to unite the Arab nations in order to eliminate Israel.
At the following link you can read about the trip to Libya in 2010, of Andreas Papanderou son, George, who was a prime minister too, in order to convince his father’s old friend, Colonel Gaddafi, to invest in Greece in order to help the country overcome the financial crisis.
At the following link you can read about the meeting of Andreas Papandreou, Muammar Gaddafi and Francois Mitterrand in Crete Island, where they were trying, together with other Arab countries, to form a coalition against U.S.A. and towards Russia, in order to transform the Mediterranean Sea from a NATO sea to a “red” sea.
Even today, the wife of Andreas Papandreou, Margarita Papandreou, is an activist for Iran. Margarita Papandreou, was one of the founding members of the activist group “Stop War on Iran”. As we all know, Iran is the number one enemy of Israel. The objective of this group is to put pressure on USA and Israel, in order to prevent them from imposing sanctions on Iran, due to Iran’s efforts to develop nuclear weapons. You can verify the fact about Margarita Papandreou at the last paragraph of the following link
or at the last paragraph of the following link
or at numerous other sites, if you simply google “Margarita Papandreou Iran”.
If you take into account that it was the Greek socialists that shaped Greece after 1980, and if you take into account that the God of Greek socialists has always been, even after his death, Andreas Papandreou, you can realize the political climate prevailing in Greece towards the Arab Israeli conflict, once the Greek communists came to power.
The Greek Mass Media System and the Greek tycoons
To fully explain the phenomenon of the high Greek anti-Semitism, the Greek media system must be taken into account too. Greece is one of the most socialist countries of the E.U. Socialist both in terms of redistribution of incomes (high taxes etc), but also socialist in terms of regulation. Everything is heavily regulated in Greece. This includes of course the Greek media system, which is controlled by some Greek tycoons. Politicians need these tycoons to be elected, and the Greek tycoons need Greek politicians to get involved in large public sector projects. However what is relevant for this essay is the very low quality of the Greek television and radio programs. It is actually very difficult for me to explain how bad and how disorienting for the Greek people the Greek mass media are. And I know that the news media are not perfect in U.S.A., U.K. and other European countries, but the Greek mass media are really something.
This low quality of Greek various news channels and newspapers, includes the Israeli-Palestinian conflict too. I explained how pro-Arab the Greek political system has always been. But there is another problem. The Greek tycoons who own the Greek media are also ship owners and they carry oil from Arabia, Russia and Iran to Greece. They are therefore very well connected to the Arab countries, to Russia and to Iran. They have friends and partners there. I will only mention two very well known cases, even though there are many others. The first one is the Greek tycoon Spyros Latsis who holds 36% of Hellenic Petroleum, the largest Greek oil refinery.
As you can read in section “Refineries Gas Stations”, the company imports oil from Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq, Libya and Russia. The amounts involved are huge, and the suppliers are famous anti-Semitic countries. Spyros Latsis is one of the richest Greeks, and he was also included in the famous rich people list published by Forbes magazine. He also owned a bank (Eurobank), he is also a ship owner, he owns hotels, and many other companies.
I do not know if he owns any Greek media, but you can imagine the impact that this man has on the Greek media system, since he has been spending on them tons of money for advertising his companies. And the largest part of his business involves the Arab world, Iran and Russia, since he owns the Greek oil refinery and he transports a lot of the oil with his ships too.
A second very famous case is the Vardinoyiannis family, who own Motor Oil, the second largest refinery in Greece. You can read about Motor Oil in the following Wikipedia link.
The Vardinoyiannis family are also ship owners, they used to partly own Piraeus Bank, they have many other companies, and they partly own two of the main Greek television channels i.e. Mega TV and Star Channel, and they hold stakes in many other Greek media too. As you can see at the following link, Aramco, the state owned oil company of Saudi Arabia, was holding a 50% share in their company, Motor Oil.
Aramco can be seen as a synonym for Saudi Arabia, since it is the state owned oil company of one of the richest oil countries in the world. Given the partnership between the Vardinoyiannis family and Saudi Arabia, one can conclude that in a sense, the Greek public was informed by Saudi Arabia when it came to the Arab-Israeli conflict. In other words not only the Greek political left was attached to the extremely rich Arab dictators, but the Greek tycoons who were controlling the Greek news media were the partners of these Arab dictators too. Actually to put it in a more correct way, both the political system and the Greek tycoons were the partners of the Arab dictators.
Since the Greek media system is very tightly controlled and regulated, one can only hear the version of the Greek political and business elites when it comes to the Arab-Israeli conflict, which is basically the radical Arab version of the story, the version of Palestinian genocide etc. Below there is a map of the Greek Media System, which is a bit old and needs to be updated, but which gives the general idea, which is that 8 groups control almost all the Greek news media.
Greece’s Energy Dependency
Until now, I described how the Greek political and business elites are connected to the Arab world. You can imagine the Greek political and economic elites as very well connected, and you can imagine the Greek economic model like the Russian one, where a political elite works closely with a business elite. However all this businesses between the Greek politicians and Greek businessmen with the Arabs, Iranians and the Russians, would had not taken place if it wasn’t for the oil and natural gas.
Everything starts from Greece’s need for oil and natural gas. Therefore the origin of the Greek anti-Semitism is the need for energy. It is this need that brought together the Greek political and business elites with the Arab and Iranian dictators. However once this partnership was formed, the rotten political and media system made sure that Greek people were really misinformed and disoriented in order to be biased against the Israelis. But as I said if it wasn’t for oil, this partnership between the Greek elite and the Arab dictators might had not taken place. At the following Financial Times link, you can see how dependant Greece was on Iranian oil, and she was actually pressing the E.U. to ease sanctions on Iran.
The following Reuters link, also explains how dependent Greece was on Iranian oil, and how she was saved from two Russian oil companies when the E.U. banned imports from Iran.
The following Washington Post link, states how dependent Greece is on Iranian oil, and on what generous terms Iran sells oil to Greece, and how Greece asks the E.U. not to be too harsh on Iran when it comes to its nuclear program in order to return the favor.
Moreover you will see at the following Wikipedia link that Gazprom, the state owned Russian natural gas provider, supplies 76% of the natural gas consumed in Greece, which makes Greece very dependent on Russia too. I think the 76% figure has further increased in recent years and it is like 90% but I am not sure.
Therefore to explain the impressive 69% of the Greek anti-Semitism, you have to take into account Greece’s need for energy sources, the corrupted Greek socialists, who did not only want to have good relations with the Arab countries but also to make favors to the powerful and extremely rich Arab and Iranian dictators, and finally the Greek tycoons who are controlling the Greek media and who are partners of the Arab dictators. It is really as simple as that and it is a waste of energy to search in other fields for the causes of Greek anti-Semitism. There might be some other minor causes too, but the causes for the 69% of Greek anti-Semitism, while there are no more than 4-5 thousands Greek Jews in a population of 10 million people, cannot be attributed to anything else than what I just described i.e. the Greek dependency on the Arabs, Iranians and Russians for oil and natural gas, the corrupt Greek political system, and the Greek tycoons of the media.
And don’t get confused and believe that what I described can only explain anti-Zionism. It explains anti-Semitism too. When there are financial motives to turn people against Israel there are financial motives to turn people against the Jews too.
The Misinformation of the Greek Public
The bankruptcy of Greece in 2010 intensified all the above problems, because the corrupt Greek political system needed a scapegoat that would be blamed for the failure of the Greek State. It could not be explained to the Greek people that the bankruptcy was the result of the corrupt socialist administration of the Greek economy. Someone else had to be blamed. And now the Greek elites have a weapon that did not have in the past i.e. the internet. In the past they could only do so much propaganda, because their journalists were using their names on tv and radio programs. Today they can fund the same rotten journalists, who have web pages that support the most unbelievable conspiracy theories, either anonymously or under the name of new journalists who are struggling to make a living and do not hesitate to promote anything.
These journalists are cursing the Greek political and business elites, and pretend to be on the other side, and attract all the angry Greek people who have had enough with the current economic crisis, and whose thinking has been distorted by the Greek media. To give you an example, I will mention the issue of the Greek Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) in the Aegean Sea. At the following Wikipedia link, at section “Greece”, you can read that Israel has recognized the Greek EEZ, a sensitive issue for Greece since her EEZ is not recognized by Turkey, who threats to take military action against Greece, if Greece dares to unilaterally declare her EEZ, since that would allow Greece to exploit the oil and natural gas of the Aegean Sea.
However the Greek public does not know that Israel recognized the Greek EEZ. The main Greek media never mention that, while the supposedly well funded “anti-conformist” sites of the internet, teach Greek people that it is the Jews who caused the Greek bankruptcy in order to steal the Greek oil and natural gas in the Aegean. It is much easier than you think for the Greeks to believe such theories. You would be amazed if you knew how many Greeks believe that Andreas Papandreou, the socialist leader who did so much for the Arabs, and for whom the Arabs did a lot too I guess, was an agent of a Jewish conspiracy that wanted a bankrupt Greece in order to steal her riches.
I understand that it is hard to believe that the Greek public is so misinformed, and yet what I am saying is so true. The average Greek believes that the Jews control the U.S.A., that the Jews control Greece, that most rotten Greek politicians are working for the Jews etc. And I am not talking about uneducated people. All people without education believe that. I am also talking about many people that have studied at university level. Because being a doctor or a lawyer does not mean that you know what happens in the middle east. On the contrary, it means you were too busy, and did not have the time to find out what happens in the Middle East, and therefore all the knowledge you have on the subject is based on the information provided by the mass media. And how can you blame these people with the kind of information they have been given for so many years by the communist journalists, who work for the Greek tycoons?
I must mention that the Greek tycoons always prefer and promote socialist politicians and journalists, since the latter favor a lot of regulation and bureaucracy, which is very convenient for the Greek tycoons, since it makes it much harder for foreign companies that are not friends of the Greek politicians to enter the Greek market. They can enter the Greek market only for sectors that the Greek elite is not interested i.e. Zara, H&M, Marks and Spencer etc. If the Greek elite is interested they can enter only if they form partnerships with the Greek tycoons. When I say they cannot enter the Greek market I do not mean that they are officially banned, but they know that the Greek political system with its huge influence in everything will give them a hard time if it does not approve them.
The Gaza Crisis of 2014
I want to use the Gaza crisis of 2014 to demonstrate some of the things I have been saying so far. Since 2010, Greece, Israel and Cyprus have a common defense doctrine against Turkey. The main reason is that Turkey and Israel, which were ex-allies some time ago, are in very bad terms under the Islamist and Muslim Brotherhood supporter, Recep Erdogan. At the same time Greece, Israel and Cyprus, have a lot in common since they can all profit from the crude oil and natural gas reserves in the Mediterranean Sea. You can read a summary at the following link, or many other links if you google Greece-Israeli defense doctrine.
Therefore Greece and Israel have a defense doctrine against Turkey. During the Gaza crises, Egypt, Jordan, United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia blamed Hamas for the crisis as you can read at the following New York Times link.
You can read about it at the following Reuters link too.
The reason of course that Egypt and Saudi Arabia blamed Hamas was not because they love Israel. They hate Israel. But Hamas is the off-spring of the Muslim Brotherhood which really scares the current Egyptian and Saudi status quo, and they are afraid that the Brotherhood poses a threat to them too. Therefore Saudi Arabia moved against Hamas while Qatar, which together with Turkey and Iran are the main supporters of Hamas, used their influence to support Hamas during the Gaza crisis. You can read about Hamas and Qatar at the following link.
But before I continue I have to say that the legendary socialist PASOK party of Andreas Papandreou is currently preferred by only 5% of the Greek voters. The financial crisis destroyed the party since it was no longer possible for socialists to hire people in the public sector and build their personal armies of voters. The Greek electorate has now moved to SYRIZA, a party of the radical left which is full of Marxists. Actually one of the former leaders of SYRIZA, Nikos Konstantopoulos, is known for his excellent relationships with the Vardinoyiannis family, who had at some time appointed him as the chairman of Panathinaikos, a very big Greek football club that the family used to own. You can read about Mr. Konstantopoulos football presidency at the following link. Please note that the link describes Mr. Konstantopoulos as the ex-leader of Synaspismos party, which was the original name of Syriza.
The ex-wife of Mr. Nikos Konstantopoulos, Mrs. Lina Alexiou, is the vice president of the Greek supervisory body for television and radio programs. In other words Mrs. Lina Alexiou supervises the media of the Greek tycoons. You can read about Mrs. Lina Alexiou at the following link. Please note that Zoi Konstantopoulou, a current member of parliament and SYRIZA, is the daughter of Mr. Konstantopoulos and Mrs. Alexiou.
I was therefore under the impression that the Greek left was influenced by Saudi Arabia. However under the current Gaza crisis, while Saudi Arabia stood against Hamas, SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras appeared in a public protest wearing a Palestinian neckerchief as you can see at the following link.
This indirectly implied his support for Qatar and Turkey that are the countries supporting Hamas and its current attack on Israel. It seems that Saudi Arabia does not influence Greece anymore, at least not as much as Qatar.
At the following link you can see that in 2006, Aramco sold back to the Vardinoyiannis family its 50% share in Motor Oil, who sold it somewhere else.
You can read about it at the following link too.
Actually the two partners were in the courts over a dispute for approximately 200 million euros. You can read about it at the following link.
It therefore seems that Aramco left Greece as an investor, and that has affected the stance of the Greek left too, which supported the Qatar stance on the Gaza crisis. And if anybody thinks that the Greek left has done so for humanitarian reasons, I will have to say the following. The Greek left did not protest, and the Greek people do not know about the genocide of the Sudanese Arab leader Omar al Bashir, who killed approximately 300 thousands black Muslims in Sudan, and was convicted by the International Criminal Court of Hague for his crimes, and there is a warrant against him. You can read about it at the following BBC link.
At the following link you can read about the Arab racism in Sudan.
You can read more about their racism at the following link.
However the Greek left never brought to the attention of the Greek people the atrocities of Omar Al Bashir. I mean with demonstrations and protests of similar strength to the ones that always take place against the Israelis, where the victims are amazingly less, and the Israelis are responding to the Hamas’ or others aggression. The reason is that Omar al Bashir is a supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood too, and that he is a very good friend of Qatar. Qatar was actually complaining against the warrant issued against him by the International Criminal Court as you can read at the following Spiegel link.
At the following Wikipedia link, you can read in section “Sudan” about the many members of the Muslim Brotherhood that were included in Omar Al Bashir’s government.
Moreover, note that Greece has a common defense doctrine with Israel, and the opposition leader Alexis Tsipras went out in the streets protesting for Gaza, doing exactly what Turkey was doing. And in reality the fighting sides in Gaza are Israel on one side and Qatar, Turkey and Iran on the other. It is not Israel on one side and Hamas on the other as it might seems to people who do not follow the news. And Greece has signed a common defense doctrine with Israel against Turkey. But the opposition leader Alexis Tsipras appeared publicly wearing a Palestinian scurf, because the oil business is so strong, that it can have its own effects in the Greek political system, outside the national strategy.
With all the above, I want to describe the ways that oil pours into the European left, and the ways oil actually affects the European left, and the European political systems in general. Oil is a very powerful thing, and you need to remember that when you fight against oil, you are in deep trouble. And the main energy suppliers for the European countries are Iran, Russia and the Arab countries. That’s the main reason of European anti-Semitism. Maybe in the past there was no Israel, but there were Jews who had power in the banking system. There were always financial motives for anti-Semitism.
I also want to say a few more things about Qatar. Qatar is a small but very rich country of the Persian Gulf, and it is heavily investing abroad, very often in order to buy political influence. At the following link you can read about the Qatar’s investments in England.
At the following link you will see that Qatar has invested 65 billion dollars in European countries.
At the following link you will read that Qatar is funding the radical Islamism in Europe.
Note that it is much easier to fund the European left in order to protect the European Islamists, since red socialists are less attached to local religions.
Therefore if you want to understand the causes of anti-Semitism in your country, you will need to examine the routes of energy. You will need to find who are the importers of energy in your country, who controls the media, what are the relationships of the media with the political system etc. I am sure that if you do that you will end up with a story very similar to mine. I have to repeat that there might be other minor causes for the European anti-Semitism, but anti-Semitism is always a financial phenomenon.
It is only the simple people at the bottom of the political pyramid that develop original anti-Semitism, but this happens only because they are brain washed by political and business elites who are driven by financial motives. If the Jews were not powerful in Germany, Hitler would had not given a damn about them. When examining anti-Semitism forget about the bottom, forget about psychology. Always look at the top, always look at the numbers. Anti-Semitism is always and everywhere a financial phenomenon and as such it should always be examined.