Letter to The New York Times, April 26, 1998

April 26, 1998

Via Fax: 212-556-3622, 3690

The New York Times
229 West 43rd Street
New York, NY 10036-3959

To the Editor:

David Binderís obituary of Constantine Caramanlis (Thursday, April 23, 1998, A23) discredits Greeks when he describes Greeceís politics as a "culture where deviousness is sometimes seen as a virtue" and ascribes to Caramanlis that Greeks are "cunning and conniving." Binderís selective use of negative stereotypes is not only insulting but bigoted.

Anyone familiar with Greece and its people know them as hard working, devoted to family and freedom and extremely honest, with a Government that has helped its people achieve a quality of life that surpasses that in the United States.

Binder omits the exceptionally strong role taken by the United States installing and backing the military junta in Greece as well as ousting the democratically-elected government. The juntaís failed coup in Cyprus--never a threat to the Turkish minority--was used as an excuse by the Turks to invade and occupy almost 40% of Cyprus.

It was United States interference that destroyed democracy for seven years in the land of its birth and weakened it on a vulnerable island. The words "cunning," "conniving," and "devious" could be used to accurately describe our governmentís foreign policy towards Greece and Cyprus.

Michael C. D. Javelos
Associate Director


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