History will write shame – Article by Eleni Mavrou, AKEL Political Bureau member
Sunday 6 November 2022, “Haravgi” newspaper
Last Monday, with the votes of the Democratic Party DIKO and the social democratic EDEK, along with the silence of the Democratic Front Party DIPA, the Parliamentary Finance Committee agreed to release the fund included in the 2023 state budget for the Grivas Museum which the Anastasiades government is eager to create.
This was done despite the fact that the specific fund was “frozen” and deleted in December 2021, as a result of an amendment submitted by AKEL and supported by DIKO, EDEK, DIPA and the Ecologists. And even though all these parties supported this position with consistency in June 2022, when the government attempted to trick [the opposition parties] into approving the fund again under a different name.
The stand of the government, the ruling DISY party and the far-right ELAM is not surprising. Every January we observe them all laying wreaths at the monument to the arch-traitor of our homeland, Grivas. We see them organising meetings and events on the life and actions of the destroyer of Cyprus. Their main concern is to absolve nationalism and to “wash away” the blood that stains the supposed glorious image of the Right, to “wash away” the treachery that was committed by Grivas and EOKA B.
I consider, however, that if we are to be honest, the attitude of the leaderships of DIKO and EDEK was a surprise either. Obviously, they acted so for the sake of the candidacy of Nikos Christodoulides, whilst they have erased History – both their own and our country’s. When the candidate they chose poses proudly in front of portraits of Grivas, they don’t have much choice. Just as they have forgotten the heavy-handed statements they made about the “most corrupt government” – given that the presidential candidate DIKO President Nicolas Papadopoulos and EDEK President Marinos Sizopoulos are supporting insists that…he hasn’t seen any corruption. That’s precisely how the support for the creation of a museum of shame has emerged.
Some people may remember the slogan “I will not forget” only when it suits them. For us, we are not content with memorial services and the laying of expensive wreaths.
How can we erase our dead during the anti-colonial struggle the period of Grivas’ masked men from our people’s memory? If a civil war was finally averted, then it is only because AKEL responded to the campaign of terror and assassinations launched against it not with the same manner, but through the organisation of popular mobilisations.
How can we erase our dead during the period of EOKA B and the coup d’état?
Can we forget the sickening nationalism, the murders committed, the kidnappings, the bombings and the attempted junta coup in the church hierarchy against President Makarios?
How can we erase our dead, the missing persons, the refugees and the unspeakable destruction of the barbaric Turkish army invasion that the fascist coup brought to Cyprus?
The “national-mindedness” of the so-called patriots, the big empty talk words, the supposedly unyielding struggle met Turkey’s expectations at the right time and even deliberately.
So certain forces and people may make grandiose plans for museums and monuments. History is not “an empty shirt”.
In the minds of the vast majority of the Cypriot people, Grivas is nothing more than a criminal who killed innocent people and betrayed his country.