WRITTEN IN 2003 - BECOMING A POLICE STATE DOES NOT PREVENT TERRORISM
The American mainland is in danger of being turned into a quasi-police state in the name of counter-terrorism, but police states have never been able to stop terrorists.
On the Greek Island of Crete where the author lived for 16 months in 1983-84, everyone was compelled to spy on and make reports about their neighbors, or they would be charged with something themselves because the police had to have dossier entries to show they were doing their job. The mails were opened, the phones were monitored, and everything was kept in massive dossiers on every household in the police stations. The result was that no one dared criticize the government, and the freedom to criticize the government is the ESSENTIAL safeguard of democracy.
If having a quasi-police state could prevent terrorism, why hadn't it produce a single arrest in 27 years, of the very active Greek anti-West revolutionary terrorist organization 17N until Greece had to move against some of the low level members before the Athens Olympics and then only after one was caught because he injured himself with a bomb he was planting and had to be put in hospital rather than let get away?
The first arrest of a member of 17N terrorist organization occurred in 2002 when one member was badly injured by a bomb he was planting in the tourist port of Athens. On previous occasions when suspected members of 17N were apprehended they were quickly let go. This has led to widespread accusations in Greece and abroad that high ranking members of the ruling PASOK left-wing (previously pro-Soviet) party and the late Andreas Papandreou (father of the present Foreign Minister) have had a decades-long association with 17N.
The combination of very public arrest of a member of 17N caught in an act of terrorism, and the PASOK government's need to demonstrate some progress with 17N in the face of worldwide concern about the safety of the upcoming Athens Olympics, led to a series of related arrests.
In March 2003, the trial began in Korydallos, the top security prison in Athens, of 19 accused members of 17N, but there is little hope this will lead to any higher ups who may be in the government.
DETAILED HISTORY OF 17N IS FARTHER DOWN ON THIS PAGE
WHAT IT WAS LIKE TO LIVE IN, AND BE IMPRISONED AND INTERROGATED IN A QUASI-POLICE STATE
Dr. Waldron experienced what it is like living in a country where people must spy on their neighbors or be suspect themselves. This happened when she lived for 16 months on the Greek Island of Crete where she was doing a photo-ethnographic study of the traditional way of life before it disappeared with the passing of the last elderly villagers, as one in a series of articles throughout Europe for British Geographical Magazine. (She is a Fellow of the Royal Geographic Society and this was one of a series of such articles that had already been published.) D'Lynn Waldron had previously seen the workings of police states in many other countries in her younger days as an investigative foreign correspondent.
Below is a summary of the police state conditions on Crete when Dr. Waldron was there in 1983-84, and this is something that is beginning to happen in America with the Bush Administration's evisceration of the Bill of Rights under the cloak of 'anti-terrorism'.
-- The police kept massive files on every household, even in the little villages on Crete.
-- Members of each household were regularly called to the police station to inform on their neighbors, and if they didn't have something interesting to tell the police they themselves suffered for it.
-- All mail was opened on the pretext of preventing people from sending cash in or out of Greece, and the police files contained copies of every letter a household had sent or received.
-- In the police stations where Dr. Waldron was held on Crete, those files were shown to her as a form of bragging because they did not expect she would live to tell what she had seen.
-- The phone kiosks were the monopoly of veterans and their families, who monitored and controlled all communications with those phones.
-- The phones in the main post and telegraph were monitored and controlled. When they were instructed not to let someone make a phone call, they just didn't connect it, and when they were told to stop a call, they disconnected the line.
-- Added to this were the layers of uniformed and secret police that were everywhere.
-- Because everyone on Crete knew that their neighbors were compelled to spy on them, and that their mail was opened and that their phone calls monitored, they did not dare use the mails or phones to criticize their government, or even let their neighbors overhear them say anything against the government.
-- The secret police were not governed by the rule of law. At the end of April 1984, Dr. Waldron was taken from Astri Palace Hotel lobby in Elunda on Crete by the Greek secret police on the personal instruction in her presence of Prime Minister Andreas Papandreou, with whom she was having a conversation.
After being taken off by the secret police, Dr. Waldron discovered that men she had seen all over Iraklion and in the towns on Crete were in fact secret police.
When Dr. Waldron asked the secret police what she had done wrong, she was told: "You have done absolutely nothing wrong. That's how we know the real professionals; they leave no clues." This is the classic Catch 22 of a police state- you are guilty because you are innocent.
It was later discovered that her arrest and torture to try to make her say that there was an American plot against Papandreou. This was a story Papandrou concocted himself to reestablish his anti-American credentials with the Greek electorate after he had angered them by not taking Greece out of NATO and by renewing the leases on the American military bases in Greece.
Dr. Waldron was held under very extreme duress in basement cells in Agios Nikolaos and Neapolis Crete, etc., and after several moves around the island with documents that said she was being taken some place else, she was taken to Korydallos top security prison in Athens. She was held by the Greeks government for a total of 23 days.
In addition to many other things, there were three mock executions with a pistol, deprivation of food and water and toilet facility for more than 24 hours at a time, a knocking about was so bad that wherever she was taken, the instruction "Oshee photo" went with her, which is "No Photo" in Greek. Because of that instruction, though she was finger and palm printed, she was never photographed.
Dr. Waldron got some satisfaction when the interior of the police car stank of an irritating chemical because that police car had been backed up the night before to the glassless barred window of the basement cell in Neapolis and been used to fill her cell the whole night with exhaust fumes that had a noxious, stinging chemical additive in the gasoline.
The Greek Government had previously violated in a horrifying manner and then tortured to death the young English woman journalist Ann Chapman, for which the Greek Government was brought before the European Parliament May 1984 by the British Government (London Times article on Ann Chapman case below). The British 13 page brief said that the involvelment of high ranking members of the government had been covered up. At the time this was brought before the European Parliament, the British had knew that the Greek Government was holding Dr. Waldron in Korydallos prison in similar circumstances, and so the Greek Government had to release Dr. Waldron. Thus in a sad and ironic coincidence, Ann Chapman's death saved Dr. Waldron's life.
By a 'coincidence' someone on the plane taking D'Lynn from Greece put on her seat a copy of a newspaper folded open to the article on the Ann Chapman case being put before the European Parliament. By what one hopes was truely a coincidence, the plane that D'Lynn missed the previous day for New York, was unexpectedly ordered to make a stop in Paris. When it landed, the brakes inexplicably failed and the plane went off the runway. The pilot pivoted the plane and it stopped in the grass beyond the runway preventing a crash, and the passengers were evacuated on an emergency procedure. The plane, brakes repaired, was brought back to Athens from Paris, and the next day, on the flight D'Lynn was on, that same plane stopped again in Paris this time to pick up the stranded (now very nervous) passingers from the day before. When the plane landed safely in New York there was a great cheer from the passingers and the flight attendants.
Dr. Waldron wrote a full account of what had happened including the methods and locations used for interrogation and torture on Crete and in Korydallos top security prison in Athens, with diagrams of the locations and cells in which she was held.
For details of the extent and methods of torture used in Greece see the book Torture in Greece the Amnesty International.
DR. WALDRON'S DIAGRAMS OF SOME OF THE LOCATIONS AND LAYOUTS OF SECRET CELLS IN WHICH SHE WAS HELD, WHERE THE GREEK POLICE INTERROGATE AND TORTURE
WARNING TO TOURISTS: CONTROVERSIAL GREEK LAWS UNDER WHICH TOURISTS ARE ARRESTED AND SENTENCED TO PRISON
The Greek Government has a long history of arresting and imprisoning British and American tourists, usually in the paranoid and unfounded suspicion that these tourists are spying for Greece's traditional enemy, Turkey, or that they have been speaking to Greeks about other than the Greek Orthodox Religion, which is a felony in Greece.
1- Under Greek Law Number 3037 which was enacted in July 2002, the Greek Police have the option of arresting any tourist who has any kind of electronic game, even those that are in cell phones. The sentence is up to a year in prison and a fine of $5000 to $75,000.
2-- It is a felony in Greece to proselytize anything but the Greek Orthodox religion. In the mid-1980's the American captain of the humanitarian hospital ship Hope was sentenced to twenty years in prison for giving an English language Bible to a workman doing repairs on his ship in Greece.
3-- In 2001-2002 a group of tourists, including a British grandmother and a Dutch banker, whose hobby is "plane spotting" (a 'competition' to collect as many airplane tail numbers as possible) were sentenced to prison in Greece for writing down the tail numbers of military aircraft on public display at an air show. They did NOT take any photographs- if they had taken photographs the sentence would have been twenty years.
4-- The young English woman journalist Anne Chapman was grabbed by the Greek police and violated in a horrifying manner and then tortured to death in an attempt to make her say she was a British spy. The Greek government then took an innocent man from a bus stop and framed him. After he had been some years in prison, the investigations and pressure by the man's family and the girl's British police detective father forced the Greek government to admit it was their own police who had violated and tortured to death Anne Chapman, and the innocent man they framed was released. However, the British Government was never able to get the Greek government to prosecute the higher officials involved, even after taking the case before the European Parliment in May 1984.
REMEMBER, WHEN YOU ARE A TOURIST IN GREECE, IGNORANCE ARCANE LAWS IS NO EXCUSE AND THE GREEK GOVERNMENT HAS SAID TOURISTS WILL BE PUNISHED TO THE FULL EXTENT TO THE LAW.
HISTORY OF THE 17N / N17 TERRORIST ORGANIZATION.
The ultra-secret revolutionary terrorist organization called Organosi Phantasma, and N17 or 17N, for 17 November, has carried out terrorist bombings and assassinations in Greece with impunity since 1975.
17N's stated ideological goal would bring Cambodian-style killing fields to Greece and wipe out all those in the upper, middle, professional, and educated classes. However, as with most revolutions, it is said that those at the top of 17N may have become more interested in personal power and profit than in social revolution.
November 17 takes its name from the date of a 1973 student uprising, which was crushed by the dictator Colonels' army.
17N, and what was to become Andreas Papandreou's left-wing Socialist ruling PASOK Party, arose at the same time to oppose the tyrant regime of the Colonels which lasted from 1967 to 1974.
It has now been broached even in the previously fearful Greek press that 17N has ties to members of the PASOK party going back to their mutual resistance to the regime of the Colonels.
In January 2002 when both the BBC and Sixty Minutes asked the Greek Justice Minister about PASOK government connections to 17N, the Minister replied angrily. "So long as there is no evidence, we cannot accept such accusations".
However, for 27 years, no matter what political party was in power in Greece, the terrorist organization 17N assassinated, robbed and bombed with complete impunity.
Nearly a decade ago, a break could have come when two men were apprehended, but they were allowed to escape.
On June 8, 2000, by its own admission, 17N assassinated the British Military Attaché in Athens as an act of political terrorism. N17 used the same pistol they have since their first assassination in 1975 and their usual method is to have two men wearing helmets with dark visors come up on a motorcycle beside the victim's car at a stop light, and shoot the victim in the head through the car window.
The present crack down on 17N was essential for PASOK the political party in power because 17Ns continued terrorist activities made the foreign press question the safety of the up-coming Olympics in Athens, and because the ruling party PASOK was in danger of losing the next election, in part because of their inaction on, and rumored association with 17N.
Since the arrests in August 2002, the newly emboldened Greek press is calling for the investigation into what connections there may be between members of the PASOK party in power and 17N.
The trial of 19 accused members of 17N began within Korydallos top security prison in March 2003.
The best article on the history of 17N as known prior to 2002 is on the Jane's Security Web Site..... http://newsite.janes.com/security/international_security/news/jir/jir000609_1_n.shtmland
FOR THE LATEST OFFICIAL INFORMATION ON 17N FROM THE GREEK GOVERNMENT: http://www.greekembassy.org/press/newsflash/index.html
BACKGROUND D'LYNN WALDRON: Dr. D'Lynn Waldron is the honored author of books and articles on food, travel adventure and preserving traditional ways of life. Dr. Waldron went to the Greek island of Crete to study the aspects of the ancient Minoan crafts, architecture and technology that were still being used by the old people in the rural villages Crete, which were soon to be lost forever with the passing of that generation. This study was for an article for British Geographical Magazine Dr. Waldron was elected a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society) Dr. Waldron had already written featured articles for The British Geographical Magazine on the Celtic aspects of traditional life in Galicia, Spain, and on the traditional Irish way of life in Connemara, (which was the longest article ever run in British Geographical Magazine). Dr. Waldron's investigative journalism exposed foreign political manipulation and economic exploitation of Third World countries. Dr. Waldron in the 1950's and '60's had been involved in the Cold War in Asia and had been a war correspondent in Africa. Dr. Waldron has now accepted the futility and danger of telling people the truth about what is happening in the world and of trying to achieve a more equitable economy, and she has returned to fine art at which she is a very successful portrait painter and to the entertainment industry where she is a voting member of the British Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (BAFTA), and received the Association of California Symphony Orchestras' Most Valuable Player Award in 2004.
This letter with a premonition was written to D'Lynn Waldron when she was on Crete, by Sara Sothern Taylor, the mother of Elizabeth Taylor.
CLICK FOR AN OUTLINE OF ALL THE DOCUMENTS ON D'LYNN WALDRON'S SITE