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TheCouncilofEuropeFightsforDemocracyin
Greece,19671969
1May1998

FOREWORD
TodayGreeceisarobustparliamentarydemocracyandisenjoyingitslongestuninterruptedperiodof
freedomsincethebirthofmodernGreecein1821.Thirtyyearsago,however,thecountrywasunderthe
yokeofaharshmilitaryregime.TheCouncilofEuropewroteadramaticchapterinthefightagainstthe
Greekdictators.Thecountry's"suspension"fromtheCouncilin1969underminedthelegitimacyofthe
militaryregimeandlandedoneofthefirstimportantinternationalblowsagainstthejunta.

ThisMay,1998,GreecestepsintothepositionofthepresidencyoftheCouncilofEurope.Thisbookletis
offeredasasmalltributetotheCouncilofEuropeandcommemoratesallthose,bothwithintheCounciland
without,whosupportedthestruggleforthereturnofdemocracytothecountryofitsorigin.

GeorgePapandreou
MinisterofForeignAffairs

INSIDEOFCOVEROFBOOKLET

ThebookletwasresearchedbyateamattheMinistryofForeignAffairs(seebelow)ledbyNicholas
Papandreou.ItwaspublishedbytheAndreasPapandreouFoundationwiththesupportoftheMinistryof
ForeignAffairsandisthefirstinaseriesofhistoricalbookletsputoutbytheFoundation.

TheFoundationwouldliketothankKittyArseni,oneofthewitnesseswhotestifiedbeforetheHuman
RightsCommissionin1968andmemberoftheresistancegroupPAM,foragreeingtoaninterview.Agood
partofthenarrationandespeciallythecontentoftheCouncil'sdecisionswerefoundinthebookwrittenby
SteliosPerrakis,SecretaryGeneraloftheMinistryofForeignAffairs:TheGreekCasebeforetheCouncilof
Europe,19671974.Asecondbookalsoprovidedvaluableinformation,namelyTheGreekCaseandthe
CouncilofEurope,19671969,writtenbyDimitrisConstas,PermanentRepresentativetotheCouncilof
Europe.

TheFoundationwouldalsoliketothankRovirosManthoulisofYGrecProductions(Paris)whomade
availablehisinterviewswithsomeoftheoriginalparticipantsintheCouncil,namelyKerstenRogge,
GermanjuristandmemberofthepermanentSecretariatoftheHumanRightsCommissionoftheCouncilof
EuropeHansGoranFrank,SwedishjuristassignedtotheGreekcasebyOlafPalmeandPierreSchori,
SwedishMinisterofForeignAffairsandsecretaryoftheSocialDemocratpartyduringthelatesixties.

ThemembersoftheMinistryofForeignAffairs'legalservicethathelpedinthepreparation,research,and
organizationofthebookletwere:P.Mylonopoulos,L.Pnevmatikou,A.RokofillouandD.Tsangaraki.

Finally,theFoundationwouldliketothankEurodeputyandformerdirectorofAndreasPapandreou's
politicaloffice,AngelaKokkola,forherwillingnesstorememberthepastTakisPapamantellosandDinos
MakropoulosprovideddetailsonhowtheyandAndreasPapandreouhelpedtwoGreektorturevictims
escapefromthegripsoftheGreeksecretserviceinStrasbourgin1968.

Thesearchforadefinitionofahumanisticorder,forasocietyofequality,fora
worldviewfreeofideologies,andapoliticalclasswheretheStatewillserve
insteadofbemasterstillhasalongwaytogobeforereachingitsgoal.Onethingis
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certain:thekeyissuefortheyoungergenerationtodayisthedemandforman's
freedom.

AndreasPapandreou
"FreedomintheEraofSuperpowers"
November191969

1.Introduction

IntheaftermathoftheSecondWorldWar,Europeannationsagreedtosetout,inplainlanguage,the
basictenetsofhumanrights.TennationscametogetherinLondononMay5,1949andsignedStatute
oftheCouncilofEurope.In1950theCouncil(whichnowincludedGreece)putforthitsseminal
document,entitledtheConventiononHumanRightsandFundamentalFreedoms,whichcameinto
forceonthethirdofSeptember,1953.

SectiononeoftheConventionlaidouttheessenceofwhattheWestconsidersfundamentalfreedoms:
protectionoflifebylaw,protectionfrominhumantreatment,therighttomarryandfoundafamily,to
associatefreely,therighttofreedomofthought,conscienceandreligion.Thesecondandthirdpartsof
thecharterdiscusstheprocedurebywhichgrievancesandviolationsofthearticleswillbedealtwith.

ThemannerbywhichtheCouncilofEuropedealtwiththe"Greekcase"theGreekdictatorshipof
April1967isuniqueintheannalsofinternationalorganizations.

TheGreekcasemarksanhistoricpointintheCouncilofEurope'shistory:Itshowedthatthereexisted
amechanismandamachineryformakingcertainthatthemembersobeycertainrules.Amemberwas
forcedtoquittheclubandthisactreducedthatmember'slegitimacy.Forthosewhoscoffatthe
conceptoflegitimacyasaninstrumentofpressure,recallthatlegitimacyissomethingthatallpolitical
leaders,anddictatorsinparticular,seekardently.Itisnoaccidentthatoneofthekeyreasonsforthe
junta'scollapsein1974wasthatithadlostface.AbotchedattempttooverthrowtheCypriot
governmentandasubsequentsuccessfulinvasionbyTurkeywhicheventodaycontrolsathirdofthe
islandrevealedthefalsenessofthejunta'sclaimthatitcouldprotectthe"GreeceofChristian
Greeks."Defrockedofalllegitimacy,theregimecollapsed.Today,withCypriotentrytoEuropean
Communityontheagendaoftheday,EuropeisobligedtodealwiththeconsequencesoftheTurkish
invasion.

TheGreekcaseshowedtheCouncilofEuropeoperatinginhighgearandatitsbest.Inspiteofshort
termpoliticalconsiderationsthatarguedagainstsuchaforcefulpresenceinGreekaffairs,theCouncil
proveditsmettleasaninternationalorganization.GreekMinisterofforeignaffairs,Theodore
Pangalos,recentlywrotethat"thewaytheCouncilofEuropehandledtheGreekcaseconstitutesa
uniqueexampleofhowamultilateralInternationalOrganizationthatrespectsitsfoundingcharter,its
mission,andtheculturalheritageofitsmembersshouldbehave."

ButtheGreekcasealsohelpedshapeanewattitudeinforeignrelations.MaxvanderStoel,former
memberoftheConsultativeAssemblyoftheCouncilofEuropeandpresentlyHighCommissionerof
NationalMinoritiesattheOSCEinTheHague,recentlywrotethat"thetheorythatthestatehadno
righttointerfereintheinternalaffairsofanotherwasusedasanexcusebygovernments"toremain
passive.TheGreekcasehelpedovercomethesehesitations.Inlargepartbecauseoftheactivitiesof
theCouncilofEurope,wenolongerconsiderhumanrightsassimplyan"internalaffair,"butamatter
ofconcernforallmodernnations.

GiventhattheCommunityispresentlyintheprocessofexpanding,theGreekcaseprovesparticularly
relevantbothforexistingandfuturemembers,especiallythosewhoareactiveinthestruggleagainst
dictatorshipandoppression.

TheAssemblyexpressesitsactiveconcernaboutthepresentsituationin
Greeceandthenumerousseriousviolationsofhumanrightsandfundamental

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freedomsitexpressesitsfullsolidaritywiththeGreekpeopleandallthose
whosufferedandsufferforthedefenseoffreedomanddemocracy.

CouncilofEurope
ConsultativeAssembly
Decision346,June23,1967

2.TheAssemblyReactstotheCoup

OnApril21st,1967,asmallnumberofcolonelsoverthrewthelegitimategovernmentofGreeceand
establishedthemselvesasajunta,withcolonelPapadopoulosservingasbothPrimeMinisterand
PresidentoftheRepublic.TanksrumbledthroughthestreetsofAthens,parliamentwasshutdown,
militarymusicfilledtheairwavesandsoldiersarrestedhundredsofcitizens.

TheAustrianSocialistmemberofparliamentKarlCzernetzandfuturePresidentoftheAssembly
(19751978)wasoneofthefirsttomakeanofficialstatementintheCouncilofEurope'sConsultative
Assembly,aforumconsistingofmemberstateparliamentarians.OnApril25th1967,onlyfourdays
afterthecoupd'etat,Czernetzsetthetoneofdebateforthenexttwoyears:

WewereshockedtolearnthatinGreece,thecradleofclassicismandthesourceof
Europeandemocracy,democracywasonceagainabolished,theconstitutionviolatedanda
militarydictatorshipestablished.Oneofourmembershasviolatedthefundamental
principlesofourcommunity.Asaparliamentaryassemblyweareobligedtotakeastance
andweshouldrequirethePresidencytodealwiththefateoftheGreekdeputieswho
wereassignedbyGreekparliamenttobedelegatestotheConsultativeAssembly.

TheGreekPermanentRepresentativetotheEuropeanCounciltriedtodefendthedictators.Heargued
thatGreecewouldtakestepstowarddemocracyandthatparliamentwouldberestored,oncethe
conditionsforsuchaliberalizationwereripe.Butthisreassurancedidn'tpreventtheCouncilfrom
passingitsfirstofficialrebuffagainstthedictators,onthe26thofApril.Directive256expressedthe
EuropeanCouncil'sParliamentaryAssembly"sadness"overGreece'srevocationofitsconstitutionand
calledforGreeceto"replacethemilitaryregimewithaparliamentarydemocracy."Inspiteofthe
ratherweakwording,already,atthisearlystage,themajorityofthemembersoftheAssembly
believedthatmilitarydictatorshiphadviolatedthefundamentalcharteroftheOrganization,the
Convention.

OnJune9thofthatyear,thePoliticalCommitteeoftheAssemblyadoptedaresolutionsenttothe
PermanentCommitteewhichledtoDecision346,thefirstwithrespecttoGreece.ThisDecisionset
outalltheproceduralissuesandservedasthebasisbywhichthethreeScandinaviancountriesfiled
theircaseagainstGreece.

Amongotherthings,Decision346calledontheGreekregimetobringaboutareturntonormal
politicallife.Keepinginmindthatarticle15allowedacountrytodeviatefromtheConventionin
timesofwarorpublicemergencieswhichthreatenedthelifeofthenation,theAssemblyarguedthat
theGreekgovernmenthadn'tadequatelyprovedtheneedforitssocalledemergencymeasures.
Decision346expressedthehopethatmembersoftheEuropeanCouncilwould,individuallyor
collectively,petitiontheEuropeanCommissionofHumanRightstoexaminetheGreekcase.

ArapporteurwasassignedtoinvestigateandpresentareportonGreece'sviolationsofthearticlesof
theConventionofHumanRights,independentlyofwhetherthegovernmentswouldtakeuptheissue
directly.

BySeptember,threecountries,"highcontractingparties"astheyarecalledintheCouncil'scharter,
namelySweden,NorwayandDenmarkbroughtthecaseagainstGreecetotheEuropeanCommission
ofHumanRights,withHollandjoiningthepetitionaweeklater.Thiswasthefirsttimeahigh
contractingpartyhadfiledacaseagainstanotherintheCommission,nottopromoteitsowninterests,
butintheinterestofgeneralprinciples,namelythemaintenanceofEuropeanpublicorder.

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FromthispointontwoseparatebodiesdealtwiththeGreekcase:thefirstwastheCouncil's
ConsultativeorParliamentaryAssembly,andthesecondwastheEuropeanCommissionofHuman
Rights.Inshort,thefirstentityactslikeaparliamentandpromotes"political"discussion,whilethe
secondischargedwithproducinganindependentjudgementonthecaseathand.Theultimatepolitical
decision,however,restswithathirdbody,theCommitteeofMinisters.

ThereisnodoubtthatintheGreekcaseboththeConsultativeAssemblyandtheCommissionworked
infavorofrestorationofdemocracyinGreeceandforthecountry'sadherencetotheprinciplesthatare
supposedtogovernthemembersoftheCouncilofEurope.

...ifthesituationworsens,theCouncilofEuropeandtheAssemblywillhave
thetragicdutytoact.Indeed,theConstitutionandtheConventionwouldlose
alltheirlegalandmoralvalueiftheCouncilofEuropeacceptedsuchamajor
violationoftheveryfoundationsofitsexistence.

W.E.Siegmann
ReporttotheConsultativeAssembly
JanFeb1968

3.TheAssemblyHesitates

Fromtheverybeginning,theAssemblysentastrongmessagetotheColonels:theywouldnottolerate
adictatorshipwithintheirranks,andtheywerewillingtouseallavailablemeanstofollowthecase
closelyandpressureGreecetorestoredemocracy,tofreepoliticalprisoners,andtostoptorture.Foran
internationalorganizationtobesoforthrightaboutmattersofprinciplehumanrightsandtotake
measuresthatgobeyondwordsandstatementsissomethingrareinthiscentury.Oneneedonlyrecall
theEuropeanresponsetoNaziGermanyintheyearsleadinguptotheWar.

However,thefirstreportonthesituationinGreece,preparedbyDutchrapporteurW.E.Siegmann,
seemedtoavoidsomeoftheissuesraisedbytheAssemblyspecificallytoexploretheextentby
whichtheColonelsviolatedthearticlesoftheCouncilofEurope.Thereportrecommendedthatonly
intheeventthatthesituationworsenedshouldtheCounciltakedrasticaction.Thereportalso
recommendedthattheCouncilwaituntilthespringof1969beforetakinganyfurtherdecisions.

Besidesadherencetotheprinciplethatonestateshouldnotinterveneintheaffairsofanother,afurther
reasonforthehesitationonthepartoftheassemblyintakingstrongactionwasthecolonels'oft
repeatedcontentionthattheyhadactedinordertopreventacommunisttakeover.Thisargument
seemedtoholdwaterwithanumberofAssemblymen."Ittooksometime,"vanderStoelhasrecently
written,"beforeitbecamecleartoallinterestedstatesthattherewasnorealdangerofsuchacoupand
thatthecolonels,farfromtryingtorestoredemocracy,dideverythingtheycouldtoensuretheywould
remaininpower."

ThesoftnessofthisfirstrecommendationalsoreflectedamoregeneralmoodintheAssemblythat
Greecemightbeadictatorship,butitwasstillaNATOallyinthefightagainsttheominousSoviet
Union.TheUnitedStatesmadetheargumentthatthejuntashouldnotbeattacked,otherwisethe
colonelsmightfeeltemptedtojointheWarsawPact.

Finally,agoodnumberoftheAssembly'smembershadnotyetformedanopinionabouttheGreek
case,inspiteoftherousingargumentsputforwardbyScandinavian,Irish,Austrianandothersocialist
parliamentarians.Theevidenceoftorture,beatings,systematicviolationofhumanrightswasnotyet
firmlyestablished.ThiswasataskfortheEuropeanCommissionofHumanRights.

TheDecisionalsostatedthatifinoneyearnoprogresshadbeenmade,theAssemblywouldaskthe
CommitteeofMinisterstoexpelGreecefromtheCouncilofEurope.Becauseofthis,some
commentatorsconsiderthattheJanuary1968AssemblywasaturningpointintheGreekcasebecause,
inspiteofhesitations,specificdeadlineshadnowbeendrawnandmostimportant,expulsionwasnow
adistinctpossibility.

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Byitshistory,itstraditions,itsaspirationsanditsloveoffreedomtheGreek
peoplebelongtotheEuropeanfamilyitwouldbetragiciftheyweretobe
alienatedbyaregimeopposedtotheprinciplesthatthefamilyholdsessential
toitsunity.

MaxvanderStoel
7May1968

4.MaxVanDerStoelRapporteur"Extraordinaire"

ThemoodwithintheAssemblymovedagainsttheGreekjuntathefollowingyear,owinggreatlytothe
dynamicpresenceoftheinimitableMaxvanderStoel,memberoftheDutchlaborparty,whoasthe
newrapporteurhadtheresponsibilitytocomeupwithareportonGreece.Hisreportsonthesituation
inGreecewereforcefullyargued,wellresearched,andleftlittleroomfordoubt:Greecewasafull
bloodeddictatorship.

HetravelledtoGreecetoinvestigateconditionsthere,heinterviewedcitizens,formerpolitical
prisoners,andmembersoftheregime.Hiscompellingreportshelpedpersuademanyan
Assemblyman.Theresultsofhisefforts,afourvolumestudyofGreeceundertheColonels,isarich
commentaryonthesociologicalandpoliticalsituationatthetime.

VanderStoelmadeacasethattorturewasmuchmorewidespreadthanpreviouslyknownandwasa
standardmethodforcontroloverGreeksociety.Healsodemolishedtheargumentthatthedictatorship
hadbeenrespondingtoanationalcrisis.Theregime'splansforaliberalconstitutionwereafarce.The
newconstitutionproposedbythejuntadidnotevenconformtothefundamentalprinciplesofthe
ConventiononHumanRights.AndthisconstitutionhadbeenthebasisonwhichtheCouncildecided
togivethejuntaayear'sgrace.Finally,theregimehadnotdrawnupanyspecifictimetablefor
liberalizationbuthadmadestatementstothateffecttowardoffinternationalcriticism.Maxvander
Stoelcalleduponallfriendsandallies,U.S.included,toexertallpossiblepressureattheirdisposalto
returnthecountrytoademocracy.

WhiletheGreekjuntacriticizedthevanderStoelreportas"subjective,"thedynamicDutchmanwas
keepinghimselfbusy.HemadetwomoretripstoGreece(2123Juneand28ofAugusttothe1stof
September)whereheinvestigatedingreatdetailtheconditionsofpoliticalprisonersanduseoftorture.
Hearguedpersuasivelythattheupcomingreferendumonthe"newandimproved"constitutionwould
berigged.Heproposed,onceagain,U.S.pressureandtheformationofagovernmentofnationalunity
totaketheplaceofthedictators.

BolsteredbyvanderStoel'sreports,inSeptember26of1968theAssemblyvotedDecision385which
calledforparliamentaryelectionswithinsixmonths,underconditionswhichallowedforafreeand
democraticcampaign.TheAssemblydecidedtofolloweventscloselywithregardstoparliamentary
democracy,humanrightsandfundamentalfreedoms.

Asaconsequenceofhisdynamism,inDecember1968theGreekgovernmentmadeitknowntothe
CouncilthatvanderStoelwasnolongerallowedtovisitGreece.Theregimeclaimedhewasno
longercapableofcontinuinginhisroleasrapporteurtotheAssemblyontheGreekcase.

TheDutchman'sthirdreport,acceptedbythePoliticalCommitteeinJanuary28of1969,wasdrawn
upwithoutthebenefitofavisittoGreece.Inthisreport,therapporteurconcludedthatthepresent
GreekregimedidnotcomplywiththeobjectiveconditionsrequiredforparticipationintheCouncilof
Europe,asdefinedinArticle3oftheConstitution.Untiltheseconditionsweremet,itwasnotpossible
forGreecetoexpectthebenefitswhichderivefrommembershipintheCouncilofEurope.

Therapporteuralsoaddressedcertainconcernsbymoreconservativemembers,aswellasthosewho
hesitatedtocastigateaWesternallyandNATOmember,particularlyinlightoftheSovietinvasionof
Czechoslovakiainthespringof1968.Giventheatmosphereofrivalrybetweenthetwosuperpowers,
howwisewasittoattackoneoftheWest's"satellites,"asAndreasPapandreou,theexiledGreek

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politicianandfutureSocialistprimeminister,likenedGreeceatthetime?Wouldn'tanopenadmission
ofguiltbytheWest,thatithaswithinitsranksaviolatorofhumanrights,weakenthelegitimacyof
thestruggleagainsttheSoviets,whoviolatedhumanrightsbutdeniedanysuchmisdeeds?Vander
StoelseparatedtheissueofGreece'smembershipintheCouncilofEuropefromthatoftheAtlantic
AllianceandarguedthattheWestwouldnotloseitsinfluenceoverGreecebyforcingittoexit,
adoptingaformofargumentthatwouldinfluencemanyaconservativeAssemblymember.

BasedonvanderStoel'sthirdreport,theAssemblyvotedRecommendation547,bypassingitsearlier
recommendationtowaituntilthespringof1969beforemakinganydecision,andopenlydeclaredthat
GreecewasinviolationofconditionswhichwouldallowittoremainamemberoftheCouncil.As
such,itrecommendedtotheCommitteeofMinisterstotakeexpulsionintoconsiderationasa
necessarymeasure.

IfEuropedoesintheendacceptthejuntainitsCouncil,ifitlegitimizesitin
thelongrun,thenItrulybelievethataveryunstablesituationwillhavebeen
setupinEurope,foritwillbethefirsttimethattheWesternEuropean
Community,foundedonprinciplesoffreedom,nationalsovereigntyand
individualdignity,willaccepttosmashthisimage,toburntheseprinciples
intoashes.

AndreasPapandreou
Stockholm1969

5.TheMinistersGetTogether,May1969

ThefirstCommitteeofMinisterstodealwiththeGreekcasewaschairedbyWillyBrandt.Thoughthe
recommendationtoexpelGreecehadbeenmade,initsMay6,1969meeting,theCouncildecidedto
delayanydecisionsforsixmonths,thatis,untilDecemberofthatyear.Thereasoningbehindthis
delay,accordingtoBritain'sforeignminister,wasthatitwouldobligetheGreekgovernmenttoadhere
toadeadlineinordertoconvinceEuropeanpublicopinionthattheprocessofrestorationof
democracysomethingtheyclaimedhadalreadybegunhadbeencompletedorwasverycloseto
completion.

TheBritishministeralsoclaimedthattheCouncilwaswaitingforthefinalreportfromtheEuropean
CommissionofHumanRightswhichwasintheprocessofexaminingthelegalityofGreece'sdecision
torevoketheparliamentarysystem.TheCommissionwasalsoconductingextensivehearingsonthe
evidenceofsystematictortureinGreece.NotallmembersoftheCommitteewantedadelay.Sweden
inparticularworriedthatthisdelaymightsimplyleadtofurtherstalling.TheSwedishministerof
foreignaffairs,TorstenNilsson,ataconferenceoftheSwedishsocialistparty,saidhewould
recommendGreece'sexpulsionregardlessofwhethertheEuropeanCommissionhadcomeupwithits
conclusionsintimeforthenextmeetingofMinistersinDecemberof1969."ItwastheSwedish
government'sview,"readtheminutesofMay6meetingatLancasterHouseinLondon,"thatthe
Assemblyhaddoneallinitspowertofocusattentionontheextremelyserioussituationwhichhad
obtainedwithintheCouncilofEuropesinceApril1967.ItwasnowfortheCommitteetotakeaction."

TheGreekregimecouldnotcontainitsannoyanceandmoreoveritsworrythatitwouldsoonbe
expelled.YetitpersistedinremainingwithintheCouncilofEuropewhenonealternativewasto
withdrawonitsownvolition.Mostlikelyitdidn'tchoosetoexitbecauseaslongasitmanagedto
remainwithintheCouncil,itcontinuedtomaintaina"good"reputationandacertainlevelof
legitimacyintheeyesofboththeinternationalcommunityaswellasitsowncitizens.

ThoughthelossofprestigebyvirtueoftheCouncil'sdecisionmightdamagethejunta'seffortstoward
legitimacy,thiscertainlywouldn'tbeenoughtodislodgeitfrompower.Amoreconvincinganswerhas
beenprovidedbyDimitrisConstas,presentlyGreece'sPermanentRepresentativetoStrasbourg,who
arguedthatthejuntafearedtheinternationaleffectsofexpulsionorsuspension.Iftheregimejumped
ship,thejuntafearedthatWesterngovernmentsmightlooktowardotherinternationalforasuchasthe
EuropeanCommunityorNATOitselftoexpresstheirfeelingsabouttheGreekregime.Byallowing
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theEuropeangovernmentstoexpresstheirdismayintheCouncilofEurope,theregimemight
minimizesuchcriticismsinotherorganizations,organizationswherecontinuedmembershipwasfar
morevitaltoitssurvival.

Wehadhoped,aftertheSecondWorldWar,thatFascismhadbeendefinitely
crushedandthatitwouldnotbeabletomakeitsappearanceagain,atleastin
Europe.Itisourshamethatitsfirstreappearanceshouldhavetakenplacein
ourcountry,Greece,thecradleofdemocracy.

GeorgePapandreou
FormerPrimeMinister
fromspeechsmuggledoutofthecountry,April1968

6.HadGreeceViolatedthePrinciplesoftheConvention?

InwhatwayhadtheGreekgovernmentviolatedtheprinciplesoftheConvention?Werethese
violationssufficienttoexpelitfromthecommunityofnations?Theseweresomeofthequestionsthat
thejuristsoftheEuropeanCommissionofHumanRightswerecalledontoinvestigate,findevidence
andultimatelydrawconclusions.

Hearingsweretobeginonthe14thofDecember,1967,lessthanayearafterthecoupd'etat,butwere
postponeduntilthe23rdofJanuaryof1968followingarequestforadelaybytheGreekgovernment.

TheCommissionbeganwiththequestion:wasthejuntajustifiedinamilitarytakeoveronthenightof
Aprilthe21st,1967?Thecolonels'formalargumentbeforetheCommitteesetuptoinvestigatethe
violationswasthattheir"revolution"wasnecessarybecauseGreecehadbeensufferingfromthree
distinctcrises:thethreatofcommunism,acrisistotheconstitution,andacrisisofpublicorder.Ifthis
lineofargumentwasaccepted,thentheycouldarguethattheoverthrowofdemocracywasjustified,
invokingArticle15oftheConvention.Article15allowedforacountrytodepartfromitsobligations
undertheConventionin"timeofwarorotherpublicemergencythreateningthelifeofthenation."
Thisthreat,accordingtothejunta,wasthatthecountrywasheadingtowardstheSovietBloc,andthe
personresponsibleforthiswasnoneotherthanAndreasPapandreou.Inoneofhisreport's,vander
StoelquotesadiscussionwithdeputyPrimeMinisterPatakos,whomadethefollowingargument
justifyingthecoup:

Thenationhadtobeprotectedfromthesepeoplewhowantedcivilwar.Mr.Andreas
PapandreouandMr.Erlander,theSwedishPrimeMinister,whosupportedhimwere
amongthem."IftheycometoGreece,"Patakossaid,"wewillinternthemtooonthe
islands."

Thecolonelswerearagtaggroupofmilitarymen,someofwhomhadcollaboratedwiththeGermans
duringthewar.Theyhadallgrownupwithapolicestatementality,havinglivedundertheMetaxas
dictatorshipinthelatethirties,followedbytheGermanoccupationandthenthefiveyearcivilwar,
andmosthadbeenactiveonthesideofthestateduringthetenyearsofauthoritarianrulethat
followed.Theirprimitiveideologyhadsurvivedintactsincethefascisteraofthethirties.Ineverynew
ideatheysawthespectreofcommunismtheyfearedanynotionthatwentbeyondtheirown
incestuousvisionoftheworld,avisionthatwasbolsteredbytheexaggeratedfearoftheSovietUnion
acrosstheAtlantic.

TheCommitteefoundthatinthetwoyearperiodbeforethecoup,publicorderwasneverseriously
threatened,certainlynottothepointofjustifyingamilitarytakeover.NeverweretheGreekpolicein
dangerofbeingoverwhelmedbystudentsorbysecretmilitaryorganizationstheeasebywhichthe
militaryitselftookover,theCommissionargued,wasproofoftheabsenceofanysuchthreat.Nor
weretheregime'srepresentativesabletoprovethat"communists"andtheiralliesweremakingefforts
tooverthrowthedemocraticgovernmentsofGreece.TheCenterUnionparty,ledbythetwo
Papandreous,formerPrimeMinisterGeorgePapandreouandhismoreleftleaningson,Andreas
Papandreou,hadnointentionofforminga"commonfront"withthehardleft.

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Withamajorityoften,theCommissiondecidedthatGreececouldnotcallonArticle15tojustifya
militarycoupbecauseonthe21stofApril,1967,therewasnoseriousthreattothecountry'spublic
order.

InhisstatementatthehearingsonNovember25th,AndreasPapandreousubmittedhisownviews.In
particularhearguedthattheestimationofanemergencythreateningthestatewasnotmadebythe
governmentbutbyasmallgroupofofficers,theselfappointed"saviors"ofthenation.Ifthereexisted
anyemergency,itshouldproperlybeidentifiedwiththeconspiratorialactionsofthejuntaofficerswho
hadbegunpreparationstotakeoverandsuppresspopularsovereigntymanyyearsearlier.

Myresponsibility(intheeventsleadinguptothecoup)Isupposeliesinthe
factthatIunravelledthestructureofpowerinGreecebeforetheeyesofthe
Greekpeople.AndthatItriedtocrystallizemeaningfulgoalsfortheGreek
peopletoassumepowerintheirowncountry.Iwentbeyondtheaccepted
normsoftheperiod,IwentbeyondthenotionthatGreecebasicallyhadto
acceptthisvassalorsatellitestatusIrejectedthenotionthattheeconomic
lifeofthecountrycouldbeledby,guidedby,aneconomicoligarchy,andhad
Inotdonethesethingsandhadnooneelsedonethesethings,therewould
havenotbeenacoup,becausetherewouldnothavebeenaconfrontation.

AndreasPapandreou
TeachinatNortheasternUniversity
Boston,November1970

7.StrasbourgHeadlines:WitnessesEscapefromJunta

OnthethirdweekofNovember,1968,twomenandtwowomenarrivedinStrasbourgtotestifyin
favouroftheGreekdictatorshipbeforetheEuropeanCommissionofHumanRights.Theywere
accompaniedbyseventeenplainclothespolicemen,ledbythejunta'stopradiopropagandistand
accompaniedbytheMinisterofJusticeand,asitturnedout,oneofthetorturershimself.Thegroup
checkedinattheMaisonRouge.

AndreasPapandreou,thefortynineyearoldexiledpolitician,hadcheckedinatthesamehotelonlya
fewhoursearlier,withoutknowingthatthehotelwasfullofjuntapeople.Boththerepresentativesof
thejuntaandAndreasPapandreouwereinStrasbourgforthehearingsontheGreekcase,theformerto
testifyinfavorofthejunta,thelatteragainst.Andreaswaskeepingcompanywithclosefriendand
outspokenantijuntaactivistJensEvensen,thenheadofthelegaldepartmentoftheNorwegian
MinistryofForeignAffairsandlaterjudgeattheInternationalCourtofJusticeinTheHaguebetween
1985and1993.ItwasEvensenwhohadbeentheprimemoverinformulatingthecaseagainstGreece
intheCouncilofEurope,anditwasEvensenwhohadsubsequentlycalledontheGreekregimeto
allowcertainwitnessestocometoStrasbourgtotestifyaboutbeingtortured.Theregimehad
acquiescedtotherequestbutitwasnowclearfromthebulkypolicecontingentthatthewitnesseswere
beingpressuredintospeakingfortheregime.Inshort,thewitnessesweregoingtobecompelledtotell
theCommissionthatconditionsintheGreekprisonsofAthens,ThessalonikiandCretewheretheyhad
beenheld,werebothhumaneandacceptable.EvensenwasquiteworriedthatthecaseagainstGreece
wouldbeweakenedconsiderablyifthewitnesseshehadrequestedtotellabouttheirordealsactually
endeduppaintingtheregimeinrosycolors.

WithAndreasPapandreouwerehiscousin,SigmundMineiko,twoGreekstudentsfromGermany,a
formerGreekambassador,andayoungDutchmannamedEricDelange,presidentoftheDutch
student'sassociationwhowaslatertobecomeheadoftheAnneFrankmuseuminAmsterdam.This
smallbanddecidedthattheyhadtodosomethingtohelptheprisoners,inspiteofthelargenumberof
guardsandthepossibilitythattheymightbeviolatingthelaw.First,theyhadtofindawaytodrawthe
guardsawayfromtherooms.Thegroupcouldn'tknow,ofcourse,ifthewitnesseswouldbewillingto
riskescape.TheyhadfamiliesbackinGreeceandtoprotectthemmightdenyallcontactwith
resistancegroups.Theactivistsneededtoestablishcontactwiththemfirstandgettheirapprovalfor
anyeffortstohelpthem.Howcouldthisbedonewithoutarousingsuspicion?Theycameintocontact
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withoneoftheprisoners,ConstantineMeletis,whoimmediatelyindicatedhisdesiretoescape.After
someserioussubterfugeandaseriesofdistractionswiththehelpofanenthusiasticconciergewho
hadfoughtintheFrenchresistanceMeletisescapedinthecompanyofthedictators'chiefnemesis,
AndreasPapandreou.HewasimmediatelytakentoEvensen'sroomintheGrandHotel.

Laterinthedaythegroupofactivistsmanagedtorescueasecondwitness,PantelisMarketakis.The
twoescapeestestifiedbeforetheEuropeanjuristsonWednesday,November27.Marketakisshowed
thejuristshiswoundsfromtheCivilWar(amissingeyeamongotherthings)andthenremovedhis
shirttorevealfreshscarscausedbytheGreektorturers.Thejuristswerevisiblymoved.Constantine
Meletistestifiedtobeingsubjectedtoelectricalshocktohistoes,bodyandtohisgenitals.Ofthetwo
remainingwitnessesinthejunta'scustody,oneofthewomenprisonerswassoopenlydefiant
whereversheappearedinpublicsheshoutedslogansagainstthedictatorsthesecretpoliceflewher
backtoGreecetheverynextdayandneverpresentedhertotheCommission.OnFridayofthatweek,
thetwowitnesseswhohadescapedgaveapressconferencewithAndreasPapandreou.Evensen
securedpoliticalasylumforthetwooftheminhiscountry.

TheCouncilofEuropehasconfirmedwhatIclaimedintheSenate,thatthe
Greekregimeencouragestheuseoftortureasameanstoextractinformation
fromprisonersandtodiscouragemenandwomenfromparticipatingin
actionsagainstthemilitaryregime.

ClaibornePell,USSenator

8."CanYouProveYouWereTortured?"

Hadtheregimepractisedtortureinasystematicwayorwerereportsoftortureexaggerated?Whatwas
thedefinitionoftortureanyway?Thequestionofprovingtorturesomethingthathappensbehind
closeddoorswasnotaseasyasitseemed,giventhehighdegreeoflegalityimposedonthehearings.
Torturehadtobeproved"beyondreasonabledoubt."Article3canbesaidtohavebeenviolated,the
Commissionfound,whentwoelementshaveoccurred:theactsofviolencearerepeatedbystate
officialsoroccurundertheirsupervision,andsecond,suchactsarehiddenorsilencedbythe
government,theperpetratorsarenotpunishedandthehigherauthorities,throughtheirsilence,appear
toacquiesceifnotfullysupportsuchactsofviolence.

ToprovethatGreecehadviolatedArticle3theCommissionwouldhearandexaminewitnesses.In
ordertocorroboratethetestimonyofthewitnesses,andverifythewitnesses'statementsabouttorture,
theCommissionwouldalsosendmemberstoGreeceforonsiteinvestigation.Oneofthewitnesses
recalledthe"scientific"questioninginStrasbourg:

ThequestioningwasdifficultformeIhadtoconfrontawallofexpressionlessjurists
whodemandedthatIanswertheirquestionswithscientificprecision:wasIbeatenwith
myshoesonoroff?Werethesolesofmyshoesmadeofleatherorofrubber?Wasthe
objectwithwhichIwasbeatenmadeofwoodorofmetal?Whowasstandingandwho
wassitting?Whatwasmycelllike?Youhadtohaveconsiderablecomposureandyouhad
toremovealltracesofemotioninordertodescribetheexperienceoftortureinsucha
clinicalfashion.However,thelackofexpressiononthepartofthejuristsultimatelygave
measenseofjusticebeingdone.Downdeep,Ifelttheirobjectivityworkedinourfavor.
KittyArseni,March6,1998

TheCommissionreceived941writtendocuments,examined213allegationsoftorture,listenedto58
witnesses,ofwhich22inStrasbourgand36inAthens.TheCommissionsentrepresentativesto
investigatethreeplacesofdetentioninGreece,andregistered8torturechambersintheAthensand
Piraeuspoliceprefecture,28inThessaloniki,14inCrete,9inothercities,and29intheofficesofthe
militarypolicethirtythreepoliceagentswerecitedastorturersorfunctionariesofthemostinfamous
membersofAthenssecurity,suchasLambrou,Malios,KarapanayiotisandBabalis.TheCommission
alsoverifiedfiveexecutions.DoctorsfromGenevaexaminedtorturevictimsbothinStrasbourgandin
Greeceandfurtherhelpedestablishthecaseoftorture.
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OneofthetorturersmadethefollowingexcuseinhisstatementtotheCommittee:

Sirs,itistruethatcertaindetaineeswereseriouslymistreated.Buttheyweredangerous
communistsagitators.Andtheagentswhodidtheirdutyandsubsequentlypunishedthese
agitators,doyouknowwhotheywere?Theywerethesons,brothers,orcousinsofthose
killed,torturedandmaimedbythepseudorevolutionarycommunistsduringwhatis
erroneouslycalledtheCivilWar.

TheCommissionalsointervenedtosaveAlekosPanagoulis,whohadbeencapturedafterattempting
toassassinatetheGreekdictator.TheGreekgovernmentacceptedtheirrequestforastayofexecution.

Crucialtestimonywasgivenbytwotorturevictimswho'dmanagedtoescapefromGreeceinorderto
testifywiththehelpofAndreasPapandreouandMichalisRaptis,alsoknownasPablo,afighterin
theAlgerianrevolutionalongsideBenBella.KittyArsenihadbeentorturedinthenotorious
BouboulinasprisonintheheartofAthensandPericlesKorovessisinthemilitaryhospital401.
Althoughthehearingswereheldbehindcloseddoors,rumorsoftheirtestimonyfoundtheirwayinto
theEuropeanpress.KittyArseniwassubjectedtofalanga,meaningshewastiedtoawoodenbench
whilefourpolicementookturnsbeatingthesolesofherfeetandherbodywithmetalclubs.Hercellin
theBouboulinadetentioncenterbehindtheNationalMuseumwassosmallshecouldn'tliedown.

Scatteredbitsoftheirconfidentialtestimonyreachedthepress.Televisioninterviewswithsomeofthe
torturevictims,combinedwiththeadventurestoryofthetwowhoescapedfromtheGreekpolicemen
inStrasbourgelectrifiedthepressandmadeastrongimpressiononEuropeanpublicopinion.

TheCommissionfoundthattheGreekgovernmentmadenoefforttoprevent,stop,ortaketotaskand
punishanytorturer,evenwhenmadeawareofthenamesofbothtorturerandvictim.Theabovemeant
thatGreecewasinclearviolationofArticle3oftheConvention.TheCommissionconcludedthat
tortureofpoliticalprisonerswasastandardmethodofcontrolforthegoverningregime.

Foritspart,towardoffarguments,GreecerecalledtheBritishbarbaritiesinCyprus,whiletheregime
threatenedanumberofEuropeancountrieswithaboycottoftheirproductsintheeventofexpulsion,
whileatthesametime,theCommissionandtheCommitteesetupbyitweredenouncedfortheiranti
Hellenicbehavior.WhenHaroldWilsonannounced,intheHouseofCommons(Dec91969)thathe
wouldvoteforthesuspensionofGreekmembership,because"thatwhichhappenedinGreece
constitutesaninsultforeverypersonwholovesGreece,fortheGreekpeopleandtheideaof
democracy,"theGreekministerofForeignAffairssaidthatsuchtalkonlyhelpsGreece'senemies.
Democraticprinciples,theGreekForeignMinisterargued,arenottheultimateaimwhen"peaceisat
stake."

TheCommissionexaminedotherviolationsoftheConventionaswell,andfoundthatGreecehad
indeedviolatedalargenumberofrulesintheConvention.TheCommissionsentitsconfidentialreport
totheMinistersofForeignAffairs,inpreparationfortheirmeetingonGreece.Thedocumentwas
leakedtothepressandthemediadevotedmanypagestotheCommission'sfindings.Europeanpublic
opinionwasswayedagainstthedictatorsonceandforall.TheissueofhumanrightsinGreece,which
hadbeenexaminedfollowingapreciseandscientificmethodology,couldnolongerretainitslegalistic
patina.ThereportdispelledanyremainingdoubtsabouttheseriousnessofGreece'sviolationsof
humanrightsandtheissuesraisedbythisverythoroughinvestigationbroughttheGreekcasetothe
forefront.

...thatwhichhappenedinGreececonstitutesaninsultforeverypersonwho
lovesGreece,fortheGreekpeopleandtheideaofdemocracy.

BritishPrimeMinister
HaroldWilson,December1969

9.TheMinistersGetTogetherAgain,December1969

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Forthefirsttimeinitshistory,theCommitteeofMinisterswasabouttodecideonwhethertoexpelor
suspendamember.ThethirditemonitsagendaforDecember12,1969was"thesituationinGreece
recommendations547and569proposalforsuspensionofGreece."Someoftheillustriousministers
atthatgatheringwereItaly'sAldoMoro,whoasservingasthepresidentoftheCommittee,Kurt
WaldheimfromAustria,GastonThornfromLuxembourg,TorstenNilssonfromSweden,I.
CaglayangilfromTurkey,andG.ThomsonfromGreatBritain.

Thoughthepressandthepublicmoodwereclearlyinfavorofdrasticaction,theministerialcommittee
wasnotasunanimous.Swedenkeptthehighgroundthroughoutthediscussionandaskedforfull
expulsionGermanypreferredsomethinglessdrastic,likesuspensionFrance,TurkeyandCyprus
wereagainsttakinganyactionatall.ArchbishopMakariosofCypruswasnotwillingtoconfront
Greeceoverthismatter.TurkeyarguedthatGreekpresenceintheCouncilwasabetterwayto
influencetheliberalizationprocessanddidnotwanttocausefrictionwhichwouldreverseGreece's
commitmenttoremoveGreektroopsfromtheislandofCyprus.AsacloseAmericanally,Turkey
mostlikelybelievedthatitsinterestswerebestpreservedbytakingtheAmericanline,whichwas
againstGreeksuspension.Francearguedthatthenatureofagovernment'spoliticalsystemshouldnot
beahindrancetocommercialactivity,andasiftoproveapoint,soonaftertheministerialmeeting,
enteredanumberofagreementswiththeGreekjunta,includingthesaleof30Miragefighters,
missiles,tanksandotherheavyweapons.

UltimatelytheScandinavianproposal,amendedbyGermany'sdesiretoenactasuspension,became
theworkingdocumentforthedecisionuponwhichtheministerswouldbecalledtovote.TheGreek
ministerofForeignAffairs,Pipinelis,presentduringthediscussions,madeaspeciousargumenttothe
effectthat"ifyoucutusoff,howdoyouexpecttoinfluenceus?"

Thecountriesdiscussedthesituationandworkedonthewordingofthefinalproposal.Thedocument
statedthatGreecehadseriouslyviolatedtheConventionandarguedinfavorofsuspendingGreek
representation.TheCommitteeexpresseditssorrowthattheGreekgovernmenthadnottaken
appropriatemeasuresfortherestorationofhumanrightsandbasicfreedomsandwerealsotakingno
measurestorestoredemocracy.

Whiletheministerswerespeaking,theGreekforeignministersuddenlyinterruptedtheproceedings
andtoldtheministersthatGreecewoulddenouncethemandthatitwouldleavetheCouncilofEurope
ofitsownfreewill.Inthismanner,Greecemanagedtoavoid,atthelastminute,aformaldecision
againstthemilitaryregime.

Caughtoffguard,ratherthanvotetosuspendGreece,theCommitteeofMinistersconsidereditagiven
thatGreecewouldfromnowonabsentitselffromallactivitiesoftheCouncilofEurope,andmadeit
clearthatGreece'sabruptexitwasadirectresultoftheCouncilofErope'sactivitiesandpressure.The
absenceofavotesubsequentlycreatedsomedifficultieswiththelegalityofGreece'sabsence,
difficultieswhichwereovercomebyasubsequentdiscussionbytheviceministersofforeignaffairs
onthe27thofNovember,1970.

Greece'sexpulsionfromtheCouncilofEuropehasgreatmoralsignificance.It
opensthewayforfurtheractionsonthepartofWesternEurope.Thebigbattle
remainshowever.Europewillproveifitisreadytofightfordemocracyand
humandignityifithasthecouragetobringthecaseofGreeceintothehallsof
theAtlanticAlliance...

AndreasPapandreou
Dsseldorf,April19,1970

10.TheConsequensesofSuspension

Oneofthemoresubstantiveeffectsoftheongoingpressureduringtheperiodleadinguptosuspension
wasthatanumberofpoliticalprisonersweresubsequentlytreatedbetter.Forexample,sixdaysbefore
the"referendum"forthenewconstitutionthatwassupposedtoindicateamovetowardsliberalization

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andforthatreasoncameunderclosescrutinyfromtheCouncilofEurope,theregimereleasedaging
politiciansGeorgePapandreouandPanagiotisKanellopoulosfromprisonandplacedthemunder
housearrest.

Thehighlevelofpublicitygiventothehearingsontortureexertedfurtherpressureontheregimein
Athens.Thehearingscausedatemporary,ifnotapermanentimprovementinprisonconditions.
TwentyoneparliamentarianswerereleasedontheeveoftheMinisterialCommitteeandtheregime
finallysignedanagreementwiththeRedCross.

TheGreekpeopledidnotremaincompletelyinthedarkabouttheexpulsion.Eventhoughnewspapers
wereunderseverecensorship,nonethelesssomeofthenewspapersmanagedtopublishthedecision
andofcoursesomeGreekscouldfindoutthroughforeignradiochannels.However,givenGreece's
continuedpresenceinNATO,theignoranceabouttheCouncilofEurope'srole,andtheabsenceof
sufficientinformationaboutthecase,theeffectontheGreekpeopleatlargewasprobablyminimal.
Fortheantijuntaactivists,thesensethatEuropewaswatchingandwasawareofwhatwasgoingonin
Greecewasextremelyencouraging.

AsAmericans,wedohavetoacknowledge,andIhaveacknowledged
publicly,thatoursupportforthemilitarydictatorshipbetween1967and1974
was,certainlyinhindsight,agreatmistake.TheUnitedStatesshouldsupport
democracyaroundtheworld,notdictatorship.

NicholasBurns
USAmbassadortoGreece
April20,1998,Newsweek

11.AHouseDivided:USPublicOpinionOpposestheJunta,theAdministrationGivesSupport

Acrucialquestionatthetimewaswhat,ifany,wouldbetheeffectoftheCouncil'sdecisionon
Americanforeignpolicy.WithintheAssemblyitself,theroleoftheUnitedStateshadbeenbroughtup
bymanyaparliamentarian.OnlytheUnitedStates,itwasarguedtimeandagain,wasinapositionto
influencethesituationandcallontheregimetorestoredemocracy.

TheU.S.wasnotunconcernedovertheturnthingsweretakingattheCouncilofEurope.Forone
thing,Americaninterestinthecasewasrevealedbyanotherfirst:theUSconsulinStrasbourgwas
suddenlyattendingtheAssembly'sdiscussionsontheGreekcase.NeverbeforehadanAmerican
officialshownsuchkeeninterest,norhadoneeverattendedtheAssemblyinanofficialcapacity.

ThehearingsheldbytheCommitteesetuptheEuropeanCommissionandtherevelationsoftorturein
particular,swayedAmericanpublicopinionandmoreimportantly,agoodnumberofcongressmenand
Senators.TheMinisterialCommittee'sdesiretosuspendGreecegaveammunitiontothoseinthe
StateswhowereworkingtoreduceUSsupportforthejunta.Forexample,portionsoftheCouncilof
Europe'sreportonHumanRightsinGreecewereenteredintotheminutesoftheSubcommitteeon
militarysecurityagreements,chairedbySenatorSymington.SenatorHartkequotedfromthesame
reporttobolsterhisargumentstobanUSmilitaryarmamentstoGreece,whileSenatorHaysusedthe
reporttosupporthispositiontolimitforeignaidtoGreece.

SenatorGoodallproposedadelayindispatchingthenewUSambassadortoGreece,toindicate
AmericandispleasurewiththeColonels.TheNewYorkTimessubsequentlyrevealedthat
UndersecretaryofStateRichardsonhadworkedhardtopreventthegoodSenatorfromproposingsuch
action.Thiswasnotunexpected.TheweekbeforethefinalmeetingoftheEuropeanCouncil,
SecretaryofStateWilliamRogershadbecome,inthewordsofAndreasPapandreou,"abehindthe
scenesdiplomaticrepresentativeforthejunta."

WhiletherewasgreatpopularsentimentintheUnitedStatesagainsttheGreekregime,theNixon
administrationsawthingsotherwise.SenatorClaibornePell,inhisintroductiontoJamesBeckett's
bookontheGreekcaseattheCouncilofEurope,wrotethat

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Imustsay,withgreatregret,thatIbelongtoaminority.Thereexistsageneral
acceptanceoftheviewthat,nomatterhowbadthejuntais,weneedGreekfacilitiesfor
NATO.ThePentagonseemstoacceptGreeceasacapablegovernmentwithexcellent
portsforourarmedforces.Theexecutivebodyfollows,inthewhole,apolicyof"non
policy."OurSenateisdividedonthequestion,ascanbeseenintheresultofourvote,45
38,whichturneddownmyproposaltoendmilitaryaid.Nonetheless,theAmericanpeople
feelajustifiableabhorrencetowardtheGreekregime.

TheofficialU.S.positionwasthatanexpulsionwasnotinGreece'sinterest.Americansupportforthe
juntaisexplainedbytheColdWargeopoliticalstrategy,wherehumanrightsanddemocraticprocesses
ofsatelliteregimesweresacrificedatthealtarofrealpolitik.Insuchashortpieceitisnotpossibleto
gointoadeeperexplanationofUSforeignpolicytheinterestedreaderneedonlyturntothevast
literatureonthesubject.

WhyshouldtheUSStateDepartmentreallycareaboutwhathappenedintheCouncilofEurope?
Wouldsuchadecisiontopplethecolonels?Certainlynot.OfficialsinWashington,liketheregime
itself,weremostlikelyworriedaboutspillovereffects:thediscussionintheCouncilmightcontinue
withinthecorridorsoftheofficesoftheAtlanticAlliance.Thislatterworryproveduntrue.Athome
however,theimpactoftheCouncil'sdecisionmadecontinuedsupportofthejuntamoredifficult,
giventhedomesticpressure.

TwelvedaysafterGreece'sselfimposedsuspension,membersoftheAmericandiplomaticcorpsand
thechildrenofAmericanmilitaryofficersinGreecepaidtheirrespectstotheColonelPapadopoulos.
TheU.S.alsoreconfirmedmilitaryaidtoGreeceshortlythereafter.

Today,nearlythirtyyearslater,relationsbetweenGreeceandtheUnitedStateshavebeenfully
"normalized."TheUnitedStateshasapologizedtoGreecefornotstandinguptothemilitaryjunta.As
AmbassadorBurnsputitinarecentNewsweekinterview,"ourrelationshiphadcometothepoint
wheretherewasagreatdealofdistrustandsuspiciononthepartofmanyGreeksaboutthebasisof
Americanpolicy.Speakingthetruthaboutthepastisaveryimportantpartofmakinganewfriend.
Wenowhaveanequalrelationship."

AnysolutionmustguaranteetherightoftheGreekpeopletodeterminetheir
fateasanation,andthiswilloccuronlywhentheGreekpeoplearesovereign,
thearmybelongstothenationandGreecebelongstotheGreeks.

AndreasPapandreou
InterviewwithDeutscheWelle,1969

12.TheCouncilGetsTopMarks

TheGreekcase,asithasbeencalled,standsoutforanumberofreasons.Thiswasthefirsttimethat
theEuropeanCouncilandtheCommissionofHumanRightsconfrontedacasewherehumanrights
hadbeensooverwhelminglyandsystematicallyviolated.Untilthen,mostofthecasesreferredtothe
Councilwereeitherindividualviolationsorbilateralviolationsoftheoriginalconvention.

Second,thiswasthefirsttimethatacasewasbroughttotheCouncilbymemberswhohadno
immediateinterest.TheGreekcasegavetheCouncilofEuropeandespeciallytheConsultative
Assemblytheopportunitytoexploreandexerciseitspotentialtothefullest."Scientifically"provable
definitionsofhumanrightsviolationswereformulatedforthefirsttime.

TheCouncilalsohelpedgenerateunprecedenteddiscussionconcerninghumanrightsinGreecein
manyEuropeanparliamentsonlyinthecaseofChilewasadictatorshipsowidelydiscussedinthe
press,byNGOs,internationalorganizationsandparliamentsaroundtheworld.Inhindsight,theGreek
caseandthewayitwashandledbytheCouncilundoubtedlydefinesthebirthofanewerainthe
promotionandprotectionofhumanrights.Thescientificanalysisofhumanrightsviolationssetdown
aprecedent.Becauseofthiscase,anumberofgovernmentsovercametheconceptthatanother

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country's"internalaffairs,"shouldbeofnoconcern.TheGreekcaserevealedarefreshingwillingness
tobringtheweightofinternationalinstitutionstobeardownonthesideofhumanrights.Inlightofthe
selectiveapproachtohumanrightsbyanumberofgovernmentstoday,theGreekcaseprovidesa
uniqueexample.

ThecaseofGreecewouldcontinuetooccupytheCouncilofEuroperightupuntilthecollapseofthe
dictatorship.Aweekafterthefirstfreeelections,heldonthe17thofNovemberof1974,the
ParliamentaryAssemblyfoundthatGreecenowfulfilledtheconditionsfortheaccessiontothe
CouncilofEuropeand,withopenarms,askedGreecetoreturntoStrasbourg.

In1982,withtherisetopowerofthePanhellenicSocialistParty,manyofthosewhowereinvolvedin
thestruggleagainsttheGreekdictatorswerehonoredfortheireffortsbytheGreekgovernment,now
ledbyAndreasPapandreou.TodayGreeceisenjoyingthelongestuninterruptedperiodofdemocracy
sincethebirthofthenationin1821.

ENDNOTES
MissionStatementforAGPFoundation

TheAndreasG.PapandreouFoundationwascreatedinAthensin1996inmemoryofAndreasPapandreou.
Throughhisnumerousparliamentaryspeeches,hismediaappearances,hislatenightdiscussionsintowns
largeandsmall,hiscoffeehousedebatesinvillagesthroughoutGreece,AndreasPapandreouofferedaliving
exampleofwhatitmeanttodevelopandpresentacoherentandpersuasiveargument.Heinspiredmany
Greekstoenterpublicservice.

Inkeepingwithhisideals,theFoundationseekstocontributetotheintellectuallifeofGreecebysupporting
scholarshipthatdevelopsalternativeapproachestorealworldsocialandeconomicproblems.Itpromotes
greaterunderstandingandcooperationbetweenacademiaandpracticalpolitics.Intheinternationalarenait
focusesonthemaintenanceandcontinuationofthecontributionsandthoughtsofAndreasPapandreou
duringhisactiveacademicandpoliticallife.

Thisfocusincludes:

citizenparticipationindemocraticdecisionmaking
traininginpublicdialogueanddebate
thestudyofmethodsforconflictresolutionandpeaceeducation
developinganoralhistoryonbothAndreasPapandreouandGreeksocialism.

TheFoundationbelievesthatindividualfreedom,socialresponsibility,accountablegovernment,
advancementoftechnologyforhumanpurposesandcitizeninfluencedpublicpolicycontributetogreater
humandignityandqualityoflife.

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