An anti-tank shell was fired at the U.S. Embassy in Athens, Greece, early Friday, striking the front of the building on the third floor, breaking glass in nearby buildings, but causing no injuries or serious damage – even though the embassy was occupied at the time of the attack.As William Blum could tell you, the USA has been meddling in Greece ever since World War II, and that's why two chapters of his book "Killing Hope" are called "Greece - 1947 to early 1950s: From cradle of democracy to client state" and "Greece - 1964-1974: 'Fuck your Parliament and your Constitution,' said the President of the United States".
Readers of this space will remember that Greece is in serious turmoil at the moment, with protesters in the streets accusing the government of "state terrorism", among other things.
And these are just the tips of a huge and horrendous iceberg.
CBS News and many others will no doubt echo the party line as disseminated by Charles Ries, U.S. ambassador to Greece:
"There can be no justification for such a senseless act of violence"But how many of them will provide any historical context?
Anyone care to make any predictions?
Actually, that quote from Charles Ries was taken out of context, but the context is also very interesting for those who care to read between the lines a bit:
"There can be no justification for such a senseless act of violence," said Charles Ries, U.S. ambassador to Greece, who was not in the building at the time but raced to the scene to speak to reporters.I take the word "more" in parentheses to indicate that it was supplied by the reporter rather than the ambassador. In other words, I believe he actually said "We will determine what it is when we know." Which makes no sense when you think about it.
"We're treating it as a very serious attack," said Ries, adding that there was no warning. "We will determine what it is when we know (more)."
But regardless of whether he actually said the word "more", it's quite clear that the ambassador knew nothing, really, about the attack, except that:
- it was a senseless act of violence for which there could be no justification, and
- he was obliged to race to the scene and say this to the reporters.
In the first minutes following the 5:58 a.m. attack, authorities were not sure of the nature of the explosion, but as officers examined the evidence at the scene, a senior police official pointed to evidence a rocket might have been involved and called the blast an "act of terrorism."People who know even less are saying even more...
Investigators now say they have found what they believe to be the device used to fire the shell – apparently launched from a construction site near the embassy.
"This is an act of terrorism. We don't know where from. There was a shell that exploded in the toilets of the building... It was fired from street level," said Asimakis Golfis, chief of police for the Attica peninsula on which Athens is located.Deplorable is right!!
Public Order Minister Vyron Polydoras said [...] "It is very likely that this is the work of a domestic group" [and] "We believe this effort to revive terrorism is deplorable and will not succeed."
"Such actions in the past have had a very heavy cost for the country - moral, financial and for the international standing of the country," said Greek Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis, who visited the embassy after the blast. "The Greek government is determined to undertake every effort to not allow such phenomena to be repeated in the future."CBS News adds:
Public Order Minister Vyron Polydoras said Greece "strongly condemns" the attack on the heavily guarded building. "We believe it is a symbolic act," he said. "It is an attempt to disrupt our country's international relations."
Police are now trying to determine the authenticity of phone calls made to a private security company, calls that claimed the Greek terrorist group Revolutionary Struggle is responsible for the attack.And the nearly frozen blogger adds: