28 October 1940 - No means No!

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Today, we stand tall; we stand firm; we stand strong. We say ‘NO’. A resounding ‘No.’

It’s October 28 1940. The Second World War is now in full swing. The Italian fascists have teamed up with the German Nazis and it’s a sorry picture for the Allied forces. The future is uncertain and tremulous.

On 28 October 1940, Italian dictator Mussolini gives General Metaxas of Greece an ultimatum – allow the occupation of parts of Greece by the Axis forces, or face war - to which Metaxas famously and valiantly said ‘No.’

Seriously, when do ultimatums ever work? Silly Mussolini. The result? Italian troops stationed in Albania attack the Greek border and Greece officially enters the war.

Within a week, Greek soldiers fought and banished the Italian troops from their soil sending them back to their stations in Albania. The Greeks were heroes and victors. They took on Goliath and won – if only for a short time.

And while ultimately great devastation fell upon the people of Greece with the loss of human life and economic ruin, that victory showed the world that the Greeks would not roll over just because they were told to.

Today we commemorate and praise the circle of individuals, of which my Grandparents were a part, who fought and lost; but who live on in history as legends.

Peace and love,
Gleeko xx