Τηλεγράφημα της πρεσβείας των Η.Π.Α. επιβεβαιώνει συστηματική παρακολούθηση των αναρχικών

Από τις διαρροές απόρρητων τηλεγραφημάτων του State Department από το δίκτυο Wikileaks.

Απόσπασμα από αυτή τη δημοσίευση ---

Ανάλυση της πρεσβείας των Η.Π.Α. στην Αθήνα για τον Επαναστατικό Αγώνα - Φεβρουάριος 2008:

https://athens.indymedia.org/front.php3?lang=el&article_id=1310805

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4) (SBU) The Assessment team recommended that the
International Terrorism Section ad the Organized Crime
Section of the HNP be cnsulted in order to conduct an
analysis of possible links between Islamic extremists,
orgnized crime rings (especially Albanian) and the anarchist
community in Greece. 

The Assessment team also recommended
that an analytical review of all of the Proclamations be
conducted by a professor of political science or economics to
determine the educational history of the author. 

It is also
recommended that a comparative forensic analysis of explosive
devices and tradecraft be conducted in order to identify
possible connections to members of other groups. 

It is recommended that anarchist blogs and websites be monitored, all known anarchists/extremists traveling abroad be conduced, and DNA samples be taken from suspected anarchists/extremists be collected in order to compare against forensic evidence acquired from RS investigations.

http://wikileaks.ch/cable/2008/02/08ATHENS250.html


Μετάφραση:

«Συστήνεται η παρακολούθηση αναρχικών blogs και ιστοσελίδων, η εξέταση κάθε γνωστού αναρχικού/εξτρεμιστή που ταξιδεύει στο εξωτερικό, καθώς και η συλλογή δειγμάτων ΔΝΑ από υπόπτους αναρχικούς/εξτρεμιστές, ώστε να γίνονται συγκρίσεις με τα υπάρχοντα δείγματα που έχουν συλλεγεί στα πλαίσια των ερευνών για τον Επαναστατικό Αγώνα.»

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E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV PTER GR
SUBJECT: CONVICTED NOVEMBER 17 TERRORIST RELEASED FROM
PRISON  
 
REF: A. ATHENS 00942
     B. 05 ATHENS 1775
     C. 04 ATHENS 3870
     D. ATHENS 00885
 
This message is sensitive but unclassified, please protect
accordingly.
 
1.  (SBU) Summary: Convicted November 17 terrorist, Nikos
Papanastasiou, was released from prison on July 19 for
"health reasons."  Papanastasiou was sentenced to eight years
imprisonment for "setting up and participating in a criminal
group," for his affiliation with the November 17 terrorist
organization.  To date, the N17 organization has claimed
responsibility for twenty-one murders, including the killings
of a CIA Athens station chief, a U.S. Navy captain, a U.S.
defense attach, a Turkish diplomat, and a British defense
attach.  Papanastasiou is the third convicted November 17
terrorist to be granted an early release from prison on
health grounds, possibly indicating a worrisome trend.  End
summary.
 
-------------------------------------------
PAPANASTASIOU RELEASE COULD SIGNIFY A TREND
-------------------------------------------

2.  (U) On December 17, 2003, Nikos Papanastasiou, now 54
years old, was sentenced to eight years imprisonment for
"setting up and participating in a criminal group" (the
November 17 terrorist organization).  Despite having only
partially served his sentence, Papanastasiou was released
from prison on July 19 on health grounds.  (Note:
Papanastasiou was convicted of being affiliated with N17, but
was acquitted for homicide charges associated with the
attempted murder of American Sergeant Richard Judd, and the
murders of patrolman Chistos Matis, newspaper publisher Nikos
Momferatos, and Momferatos' driver Panayiotis Rousetis.  End
Note).  The Judicial Council, a panel of senior judges that
deals mainly with procedural issues and questions relating to
sentencing in closed session, granted Papanastasiou's early
release despite objections from the prosecutor.  Because
Papanastasiou is the third N17 prisoner to be granted early
release based on health grounds, it is conceivable that a
potential trend is emerging that could continue to impact
other "non-serious"  (convicted of 5-8 years on conspiracy or
related charges) N17 prisoners (reftels A, B, and C).
 
-----------------------------
PROSECUTOR OBJECTS TO RELEASE
-----------------------------

3.  (SBU) The Piraeus First Instance Court Judicial Council
accepted Papanastasiou's application for conditional release,
despite the prosecutor's objections, because he had served
3/5 of his sentence working in prison (one work day in prison
counts for two), he has (undefined) "health problems," and he
had "demonstrated good behavior while detained."  (Note: In
Greece, the prosecutor traditionally has remained silent or
responded favorably to "non-serious" terrorist early release
applications.  This prosecutor's objection is obviously a
departure from the prevailing attitude, yet it would be
premature to interpret it as a significant shift in the
overall disposition of prosecutorial authorities toward
"secondary" terrorist suspects and/or convicted terrorists.
End note.)
 
-----------------------------------------
BACKGROUND ON JUDICIAL COUNCIL'S LENIENCY
-----------------------------------------

4.  (U) The Judicial Council issues verdicts that are not
part of the public record, unlike judicial rulings in regular
courts.  The Council focuses on issues related to the Code of
Criminal Procedure and rules on various aspects of applying
sentences, including cases such as Papanastasiou's where a
convicted person seeks relief from the continuing application
of his/her sentence by claiming various extraordinary
circumstances, possible new and potentially exonerating
evidence, and/or grounds of good behavior.  The Council does
not conduct a trial and does not address and/or weigh
substantive issues relating to the crime of which a person is
convicted.  Instead, it deals with the letter of law and
assesses whether the Code of Criminal Procedure has been
faithfully applied; in cases of petitions for relief (for
example, health grounds), the Council focuses on whether
various favorable legislative loopholes and other fine print
in the law may be applied.  Theoretically, the Greek
judiciary does not respond to government pressure and is
considered "politically neutral."
 
--------------------------------------------- -
POTENTIAL TREND TO IMPACT "SERIOUS OFFENDERS?"
--------------------------------------------- -
5.  (U) In contrast to Papanastasiou's "non-serious"
conviction, N17 mastermind Alexandros Yiotopoulos and top
hit-man Dimitris Koufodinas received (non-consecutive)
multiple life sentences for their "more serious" convictions
on December 17, 2003.  Savvas Xyros, one of N17's main gunmen
whose arrest led to the unraveling of the terrorist group,
has been denied conditional release on health grounds despite
his suffering from serious health problems.  However, even
these lifetime sentences do not guarantee true lifetime
punishment in Greece, as Greece's historical practice is to
have prisoners serve 20-25 years of a life sentence before
being released (reftel D).
 
6. (SBU) Comment: While Papanastasiou's early release appears
to be the beginning of a worrying trend, it is premature to
interpret the release as proof that the December 2003 N17
convictions are completely unraveling with widespread
releases (including Yiotopoulos and Koufodinas) soon to
follow.  Papanastasiou's release could be attributed to many
converging factors including legislation favoring convicts
who have received relatively short sentences and subsequently
become model prisoners; the relatively lenient tradition of
Greek courts when reviewing petitions for relief lodged by
such prisoners; an astute defense strategy knowing how to
capitalize on "trial fatigue" (referring to the on-going,
laborious N17 appeals trial); and, last but not least, the
unceasing labors of leftwing human and political rights
groups, with a long tradition of defending terrorist
suspects, anarchists, and other "anti-authority militants."
On the other hand, because Papanastasiou is the third N17
prisoner to have been released early on health grounds
(preceded by Konstantinos Telios and Pavlos Serifis), there
may be credence to an "attrition theory" suggesting that the
Greek judicial system will incrementally consent to the early
releases of all "non-serious" N17 terrorists (convicted of
5-8 years on conspiracy or related charges).  Given the
nature of N17's crimes, however, this is disturbing, to say
the least.
RIES


http://wikileaks.ch/cable/2006/07/06ATHENS1945.html


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E.O. 12958: DECL: 01/23/2017
TAGS: PGOV PREL PTER GR
SUBJECT: "REVOLUTIONARY STRUGGLE" MANIFESTO CLAIMS
RESPONSIBILITY FOR EMBASSY RPG ATTACK
 
REF: A) ATHENS 77 B) ATHENS 94 C) ATHENS 95 D) STATE
 
     7147
 
Classified By: AMBASSADOR CHARLES RIES.  REASON:  1.4 (B) AND (D).
 
SUMMARY
 
1.  (S)  On January 24, the left-wing group "Revolutionary
Struggle" officially claimed responsibility for the January
12 RPG attack on the Embassy in a manifesto passed to the
weekly Greek newspaper "Pondiki."  The statement cites
opposition to U.S. foreign policy as the motive for the
attack -- and, by specifically criticizing FM Bakoyannis and
Minister of Public Order Polydoras, appears to mark them as
potential future targets.  The statement's focus on Greek
public figures and institutions supports the argument both
the U.S. and GOG have made since January 12:  that this was
an attack on both U.S. and Greek interests.  Public reaction
since the RPG attack appears to support this view, a change
from the tacit public acceptance of domestic terrorist
incidents.  While there has been some political fallout for
the Karamanlis government, this too has been comparatively
restrained.
 
2.  (S)  Greek authorities are undertaking a comprehensive,
professional and high priority investigation of the January
12 PRG attack on the Chancery.  The two-way information flow
has been good, and U.S. agencies' representatives have good
access.  We have shared all relevant information in our hands
with Greek authorities, and are confident that they have
shared their information equally fully with us.  The
investigation is proceeding along several tracks.  Our main
concern is constant press leaks -- likely the consequence of
political and personal rivalries in an election year -- that
have hampered the investigations effectiveness, primarily by
the near-identification of the chief suspect.  Ambassador and
DCM have emphasized to both government and top PASOK
officials that such leaks work against both U.S. and Greek
interests.  A second attack might be in the offing, based on
analysis of past incidents, but may be against a Greek
government target.  Embassy has requested and received
funding for 24-hour surveillance detection and will shortly
submit recommendations to address the Embassy's greatest
security challenge:  offices situated only 65 feet from a
major Athens avenue.  END SUMMARY.
 
REVOLUTIONARY STRUGGLE ISSUES ITS MANIFESTO
 
3.  (S)  Authorities have been anticipating a statement from
"Revolutionary Struggle;" the explanatory manifesto was
received by the Greek weekly tabloid "Pondiki" following an
anonymous call.  "Revolutionary Struggle" claims the attack
was in reponse to U.S. policies in Palestine, Lebanon, and
Iraq, also citing detainees in Guantanamo.  It contains
invective against "CIA and FBI agents and assassins" housed
at U.S. Embassies, and suggests that the Greek National
Police's Counter-Terrorism Unit houses "American agents."
 
4.  (S)  In addition, the lengthy document criticizes Greek
officials and institutions.  Its opening paragraph refers to
the Foreign Minister as "the slave of the Americans,
Bakoyiannis," and implies that Minister of Public Order
Polydoras is also too close to the U.S.  While there are no
explicit threats against either, the mention of both by name
suggests they are potential targets.  But they are not the
only ones.  The manifesto blasts the "extraordinary military
'tribunals'" and the judges currently presiding over the
appeal of the November 17 terrorists.  It adds that, if
"Revolutionary Struggle" had its way, the first building that
would be torn down would be the U.S. Embassy, the second
would be the Greek parliament, perhaps suggesting that MPs
are also possible targets.
 
5.  (S)  In contrast to the manifestos issued by the earlier
terrorist group "17 November," the document does not provide
details of how the attack was organized and executed.  The
style is also different, shorter, less ideological and more
direct/journalistic.  Some have interpreted this as a sign
that the group's members have a lower level of education than
some of 17N's leaders.  The Minister of Public Order told us
he thought the writer had media experience.
 
INVESTIGATION RUNNING ON SEVERAL TRACKS
 
6.  (S)  Since the investigation began on January 12, it has
proceeded along several tracks.  The first has focused on a
prominent Greek anarchist with a police record who is seen as
the most logical suspect.  This investigation is being
handled by an extremely restricted group within the police
department.  However, the fact that the individual was
described thoroughly (identified in all but name) in the
January 14 press has complicated police tracking efforts.
 
7.  (S)  The second line of inquiry, pursued by a broader
police working group, is focused on interviewing witnesses,
checking phone records of those offering information, and
tracking the origin of the Chinese RPG used in the attack.
Police believe that the RPG, which was not a type purchased
by any GOG entity, was likely among those looted from
Albanian arsenals during 1997.  (Greek officials report
positive cooperation with counterparts in Tirana and Skopje.)
 Police also have high expectations (perhaps overly so) for
what FBI enhancement of surveillance video shot by Embassy
cameras may reveal when analysis is completed later this
week.
 
8.  (S)  Third, police are pursuing pieces of information
(some potentially credible, some clearly not) that indicates
the attackers may have come from outside Greece, and were
therefore not the standard-issue Greek radicals most have
assumed them to be.  The "Revolutionary Struggle" manifesto
may challenge this thesis.  Embassy RSO, Legatt, and SIMO are
working together closely on all aspects of the investigation,
meeting regularly with the Greek police teams involved.
 
9.  (S)  Recently, both police and press have speculated that
another attack might take place soon.  This is based on past
incidents of domestic terrorism; the terrorist group
"November 17" generally instigated two-three incidents prior
to claiming responsibility in a written statement.  Press
sources note that RPGs are usually packaged in groups of six;
presuming that some were used for "target practice," the
theory is that this would leave several still available for
subsequent attacks.  Some accounts have even stretched the
line of speculation further, suggesting that the next targets
might be GOG ministries.  While there is no firm basis for
such speculation, the possibility of course cannot be ruled
out.
 
BUT POLITICALLY-MOTIVATED PRESS LEAKS HAMPER EFFECTIVENESS
 
10.  (S)  Although impressed with the energy and thoroughness
of the investigation, we have been disappointed by leaks from
PASOK-affiliated police officers directly to Greek media --
which has been constant since day one.  While in most cases
the details leaked are insignificant, the near-identification
of a primary suspect has, without doubt, hampered the overall
investigation.
 
11.  (S)  Politics is clearly behind the leaks.  With
elections this year, after the RPG attack opposition PASOK
contrasted its record with the New Democracy government --
reminding the public that its administration had succeeded in
breaking the back of Greece's biggest domestic terrorist
threat, "November 17" (a group responsible for decades of
violent attacks, including the killing of 5 Americans).
PASOK-aligned journalists jumped on board, criticizing
Karamanlis for purportedly re-structuring the police
counter-terrorism team.  The criticism seemed to hit home
when Karamanlis asked former Anti-Terrorist Squad Chief Syros
to take on the job again (in addition to his current
responsibilities as Deputy Chief of Police).  (We think
Karamanlis made the assignment in the perhaps unrealistic
hope of obtaining political peace, and to show he was leaving
no stars on the bench.)  But Syros -- whose links to PASOK
were formed while serving under former PASOK Minister of
Public Order Chrysochoides -- is also fighting for survival
in the police force's promotion cycle this March.  While we
respect his experience and conduct of the investigation
itself, we assess that he is a major source of press leaks,
which are designed to bolster his own public image and win a
promotion.
 
AMBASSADOR TO MPO, OPPOSITION:  STOP THE LEAKS NOW
 
12.  (S)  On January 19 Ambassador conveyed to Minister of
Public Order Polydoras (through MPO diplomatic advisor
Ailianos) that, while the Embassy was satisfied with the
overall level of cooperation, we were concerned that press
leaks were harming the investigation.  The leaks could
clearly delay the apprehension of the perpetrators, and
worked against both U.S. and Greek interests.  Also on
January 19, Ambassador delivered the same message to
opposition leader George Papandreou.  DCM and SIMO Chief
reached out to former MPO Chrysochoides (Minister under the
PASOK government, leaving office in 2004), stressing that
while the Embassy was not taking sides in the on-going
political/factional struggle now being played out in the
press, we were very concerned that the struggle, and, most
importantly, the leaks were impairing an effective
investigation.  On January 21, DCM passed our assessment to
PM Karamanlis through diplomatic advisor Bitsios.
 
CONTINUED FOCUS ON EMBASSY SECURITY
 
13.  (S)  In order to keep the Embassy community fully
informed, Ambassador hosted a Town Hall meeting for Embassy
employees on January 15.  The country team has emphasized to
all employees the need to review security practices, both at
the Embassy and at their residence.  All employees have been
advised to vary times and routes; the Ambassador, DCM and
other recognizable Embassy officials will be particularly
cognizant of this requirement.  Embassy requested (ref C) and
received (ref D) funding for immediate implementation of
24-hour surveillance detection teams.  In addition, Embassy
will shortly submit a cable of both short and long-term
recommendations on how OBO and DS can contribute to our
mutual goal of hardening Embassy security at its most
vulnerable point -- offices located 65 feet from the major
Vassilisis Sofias thoroughfare.
 
PUBLIC REACTION:  ATTACK BAD FOR U.S., BAD FOR GREECE
 
13.  (S)  While some press reports have dug deep into the
details of election-year political scapegoating, overall the
attack appears to be viewed not only as an attack on the U.S.
but also on Greece -- a point the Embassy has stressed from
the outset.  That does not mean that the Greek public's
anti-Americanism has lessened significantly.  However, it
appears that, after the arrest and trial of key members of
noted left-wing terrorist group "17 November" and the
successful staging of the Olympic Games, the Greek "person on
the street" no longer has the same level of tolerance for
domestic terrorism.  One recent opinion poll suggests that 6
of 10 Greeks now support increased use of surveillance
cameras to deter crime.  That is a turnaround for a Greek
public allergic to all forms of "Big Brother" monitoring.
 
COMMENT
 
14.  (S)  Some media have questioned whether, as a result of
the January 12 attack, the U.S. will refuse to consider
extending participation in the Visa Waiver Program to Greece.
 The Embassy has avoided public response on this point.
There is no evidence that Greek terrorists past or present
had or have the means or intention to undertake terrorist
activities outside of Greece.  In fact, any attempt to do so
would be to operate without the terrorists' key advantages:
relative anonymity and a support network.  In any case, at
this point we are broadly satisfied with the professionalism
and pace of the investigation and consider it important to
keep the VWP perspective open.  Any presumptive shut-off of
VWP consideration would likely backfire, generating political
resentment and impeding bilateral cooperation on this case.
 

http://wikileaks.ch/cable/2007/01/07ATHENS171.html


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E.O. 12958: DECL: 2019/05/06
TAGS: ASEC ABLD PREL PTER KCRM GR
SUBJECT: GREEK PRIVACY RULES THWART INVESTIGATIONS
 
REF: ATHENS 683
 
CLASSIFIED BY: Thomas S. Miller, Acting DCM; REASON: 1.4(B), (D)
 
1. (SBU) According to a May 5 article in the newspaper Eleftheros
Typos, Greek police utilizing video evidence have  "positively"
identified three hooded vandals who were among the forty who took
part in a midday rampage in the upscale Kolonaki Square area of
Athens on March 13.  The attackers used sledge hammers and rocks to
smash shop windows and cars, and they escaped without arrests.  In
the ensuing investigation police have reportedly used surveillance
footage and video volunteered by a local resident who captured
images of the gang as it prepared for the attack in a nearby
staging area.  Despite this identification, under Greece's
"personal data protection" law, the police are not permitted to use
video surveillance evidence to arrest or charge the suspects, and
this evidence will not be used in Greek courts.
 
2. (C) Comment: This is a real-world example of the legal
restrictions that inhibit Greek law enforcement officials to a
greater extent than their counterparts elsewhere in Europe,
constraining their ability to deal with security threats, including
those posed by domestic and international terrorists (reftel).  The
Greek government's Data Protection Authority, an independent
commission responsible for enforcing Greece's stringent data
privacy laws, has ruled that the use of cameras for any purpose
other than traffic control is unconstitutional.  Despite this, the
government installed surveillance cameras prior to the 2004
Olympics, but the issue remained controversial and after the
Olympics the cameras were turned off.  Some were reportedly
reactivated in April 2009 in response to increased security
concerns after the December 2008 riots and subsequent domestic
terrorist attacks, but their legality is disputed and the footage
they produce is not admissible in courts.  Even private filming of
other individuals is prohibited, and it is not out of the realm of
possibility that some of the gang members in the Kolonaki incident
will sue the private individual who gave video to the police for
violating their privacy rights.  As this case demonstrates, Greek
police do use video evidence when they have it as part of their
investigations - legally or not - but if they cannot find human
witnesses to testify to seeing the same things, no court will ever
hear of them.
 
SPECKHARD

http://wikileaks.ch/cable/2009/05/09ATHENS727.html


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E.O. 12958: DECL: 2019/12/23
TAGS: PGOV OEXC SOCI GR
SUBJECT: University Asylum in Greece: When Democracy Goes Awry

CLASSIFIED BY: Daniel V. Speckhard, Ambassador, State, EXEC; REASON:
1.4(B), (D)

1. (C)  Summary:  A series of violent attacks against Greek
academics in both Athens and Thessaloniki during the past month has
fueled public debate over whether the university asylum law should
be repealed to allow police officers to enter university grounds
absent a formal request from university authorities.  Both sides of
the debate are vocal:  leftist-leaning politicians and students
oppose any change to the present law, which they claim is a beacon
of free speech.  Proponents of abolishing the law argue it is an
outdated holdover from the early post-dictatorship years,
irrelevant to today's Greek reality and nothing more than a legal
cover for hoodlums to wreak destruction with impunity.  The
government appears unwilling to touch this political hot potato,
tossing it instead to university rectors who are forced to choose
between their own safety (when calling in authorities to intervene)
and that of their students, faculty and premises (when they refrain
from doing so).  As debate continues over what to do with asylum,
the broader cost of maintaining this policy (the only one of its
kind in Europe) in terms of disrupted classes, missed semesters,
delayed graduations, damage to university property, and
psychological impact on administrators, faculty and the
well-meaning student majority, is inestimable.  End summary.

An Education in Violence

2. (C)  In the year following the death of Alexis Grigoropoulos,
the teen who was accidentally shot by a police officer, leading to
some of the worst rioting that Greece has ever seen, violence on
Greek campuses continues.  The respected and influential long-time
rector of the University of Athens and Embassy contact, Christos
Kittas, was recently severely beaten by assailants on university
grounds.  He resigned his post after suffering a heart attack
following the assault.  In his widely-publicized resignation
letter, Kittas admonished Greece's youth that it is high time for
them to find non-violent means to express themselves.  Kittas is
not the only victim of violence on university grounds.  Also
recently, a professor at the Athens University of Economics and
Business, Gerasimos Sapountzoglou, was targeted by hoodlums who
beat and choked him when he refused to stop a lecture.  Anastassios
Manthos, rector of Thessaloniki's Aristotle University, was knocked
unconscious by students last year.  Several other academics have
suffered similar attacks in Athens and Thessaloniki over the past
year, yet most avoided publicly condemning the assaults, fearing
reprisals.

The Asylum Law:  How Did We Get Here?

3. (C)  The university asylum law was introduced in 1982 to protect
freedom of thought and expression on university campuses, in the
aftermath of the military dictatorship.  The law stipulates that
only university rectors and/or leadership have the right to invite
police onto a campus.  In reality, university administrators are
extremely reluctant to do so, first and foremost because they fear
for their own safety and second because doing so could instigate
further violence on campus.  To our knowledge, there have only been
three instances when permission for the police to enter university
grounds was requested:  a) in 1985 at the sit-in at the Chemical
Laboratory in Athens; b) in 1995 during a destructive sit-in at the
Athens Polytechnic School; and c) in 2002 during the informal EU
Defense Ministerial in Crete, when a police helicopter spotted
marijuana plants in a field owned by the University of Crete and
police officers were given permission to uproot 620 six-foot high
marijuana plants.

Sacred Cow or Red Herring?

4. (C)   In contrast, during the violent protests of December 2008
in which university grounds were targeted by hoodlums, university
officials did not call in the police for fear that violence would
escalate.  Police remained well outside university walls as they
were taunted by Molotov cocktail-throwing vandals from within.
Since then, the topic of university asylum has been the subject of
heated public and political debate.  Leftist political parties and
student groups in Greece support the current law, to protect free
speech.  Those in favor of repealing the law argue that it was
enacted during a time when universities were the sole venues of
tolerance and freedom.  However, in today's stable Greek democracy,
freedom of speech and thought are well protected already.  As
practiced today, they say, the law is supporting a system that
encourages violent action without repercussions, allows lawlessness
on campuses, provides a sanctuary for criminals, and threatens the
academic and student communities.

Rectors Unite, Government Punts

5. (C)  During an annual Rectors' Assembly in mid-December, the law
was at the top of the agenda.  Rectors agreed that the law should
be seen as protecting freedom of speech in the classroom and
research.  The rectors stressed that the law has been
misinterpreted to such an extent that it no longer protects these
rights, but has become a faC'ade for committing crimes and a tool
for the violent imposition of opinions by the few.  In the days
following the assembly, there was significant public debate on how
universities can protect themselves from acts of violence on
campus.  The Athens Law School took a bold step toward restricting
access to its campus, proposing introducing a student ID system
similar to that used by the Sorbonne and posting guards at its
gates - an idea supported in principle by the opposition.  Minister
of Education Anna Diamantopoulou responded on behalf of the
government, condemning the attack on Rector Kittas but stating that
the current legislation regarding university asylum is sufficient
as written, since it provides for universities to choose how best
to protect their premises and allows for police involvement on
campus at the invitation of rectors.  Diamantopoulou also
recommended the establishment of a duty rector on a daily basis in
order to coordinate better with authorities in case of a sit-in or
violence on campus.

6. (C)  Diamantopoulou's claims may be aimed at appeasing leftist
elements within the PASOK party and outside, but are opposed by
others.  University of Piraeus professor XXXXXXXXXXXX, educated
in both the U.S. and the Greek systems, told us that university
rectors and professors are cowed by the demonstrators and fear for
their lives when they stand up to them, adding "they (hoodlums)
know where they (administrators) live, and are not afraid to use
this threat ."  Panteion University professor XXXXXXXXXXXX agreed that the troublemakers are adept at using
intimidation tactics, including posting the names of targeted
professors on a Greek anarchist website (hosted, incredibly, on the
official Panteion University server) and disrupting classes.
XXXXXXXXXXXX has resorted to hosting visiting lecturers off campus to
avoid yogurt-throwing attacks, or worse, by hooligans and in a
recent international conference he paid 6,000 Euros for an off
campus site rather than risk the disruption or even forced
cancellation of the event if held on campus.

What About the Students?

7. (C)  Although Greece's overwhelming majority of law-abiding,
well-meaning students are those most directly affected by the
violence on campus, for the most part they remain quietly resigned.
XXXXXXXXXXXX estimates that the problems are created by approximately
2,000 hooligans - not all of them students - who are known to
police but are never arrested or detained.  In Greece, students
elect student union representatives, who are affiliated with
political parties.  Because the vast majority of students abstain
from the elections, in many cases leftist groups prevail in some
departments - these are the most vocally supportive of university
asylum as it is currently practiced.  Student union representatives
also hold the keys to the appointments of rectors and other
administrative officials, representing 30 percent of the vote.  As
a result, according to both XXXXXXXXXXXX and XXXXXXXXXXXX, a client
relationship between university administration and student groups
has been established that makes it difficult for administrators to
take a hard line on asylum.  XXXXXXXXXXXX added that even political
parties sometimes cannot control their own student unions, as when
the New Democracy-affiliated student union at the Athens Law School
was reprimanded by newly-elected ND party leader Antonis Samaras
for opposing a proposal put forward by the university
administration for the creation of student IDs.  Even parents of
students appear resigned to the phenomena of missed semesters and
delayed graduations.

The Social and Financial Costs are Staggering

8. (C)  The extent to which a small number of troublemakers has
succeeded in confusing the concepts of freedom of speech and
freedom of movement is troubling, as are the social and financial
costs involved.  Campuses have become havens for criminals, most of
which are involved in crimes such as drug trafficking, assault,
theft, counterfeiting of DVDs and CDs, looting and vandalism.
Greece's universities, instead of providing a stable learning
environment for Greece's future professionals and leaders, have
become a war zone where police are afraid to show up,
administrators are afraid to stand up and students are afraid to
speak up.  Due in large part to constant disruptions to classes,
the average Greek student takes six years to complete a four-year
degree.  Greek universities spend a whopping 12 percent of their
budgets each year to repair damage to university premises and
equipment caused by violence on campuses.

What Next?

9. (C)  The fact that changes to the university asylum law are even
being discussed is a big step forward for Greek society, an
indication that, for many, this formerly sacred legislation may be
past its prime and no longer applicable to today's reality.  The
Polytechnic revolution generation has become parents now, and their
children are reaping the not-so-generous benefits of a concept for
which they fought, which has now been distorted by common
criminals.  Public debate notwithstanding, however, at this time
there does not appear to be the political will by the current
government to repeal the law.  Traditionally, PASOK has been viewed
as a champion of all that the asylum law - in its intended form -
has represented.  Insiders fear that repealing the asylum law would
cause a serious rift within the party, particularly within its
student and youth ranks.  Tossing the ball back to university
rectors rather than initiating a more forceful approach to violence
on university campuses appears to be the preferred path of least
resistance , for now, for this government.  In discussions with
Embassy officers, faculty and university administrators describe a
prevailing sense of fear and intimidation on many campuses. The
irony is that, due to the asylum law and the inability to protect
students and professors who dissent from hard line views, the only
place in Greece where freedom of thought is severely restricted is
on university campuses themselves.
Speckhard

http://wikileaks.ch/cable/2009/12/09ATHENS1725.html

VZCZCXRO6150
OO RUEHAG RUEHAST RUEHDA RUEHDF RUEHFL RUEHIK RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHLN
RUEHLZ RUEHPOD RUEHROV RUEHSR RUEHVK RUEHYG
DE RUEHTH #0250 0560914
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 250914Z FEB 08
FM AMEMBASSY ATHENS
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 1259
INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
UNCLAS ATHENS 000250  
SIPDIS  
SIPDIS
SENSITIVE
 
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV PTER GR
SUBJECT: INTELLIGENCE ASSESSMENT: GREEK TERROR GROUP
"REVOLUTIONARY STRUGGLE"
 
1. (SBU) The domestic counterterrorism division of the
Hellenic National Police (HNP) and FBI at Embassy Athens
collaborated on a joint intelligence assessment of the Greek
domestic terrorist group Revolutionary Struggle.  Their
assessment is summarized below:
 
2.    (SBU) RS is the most dominant domestic terrorist
organization in Athens.  This radical leftist group, which is
anti-Greek establishment, ideologically Marxist, and
sympathetic to extremist causes in the Middle East, is
believed to be responsible for nine terrorist acts since
2003, most notably the murder of a Greek policeman in 2004,
the detonations of improvised explosives in front of the
Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare and the Ministry of
Economy and Economics in 2005, an attack on the Minister of
Culture in 2006, and an RPG attack on the US Embassy in
January 2007. There is sufficient data to suggest that
several other terrorist acts were conducted by RS, either in
support of the organization or as a separate group.
 
3.    (SBU) RS has authored seven proclamations which
indicate that their political ideology is based on classical
and modern political science and economic ideas, mirrors the
general leftist-anarchist community in Athens, and is
international in scope. It is a relatively new terrorist
organization, but shows signs of significant professionalism
and organization.  Based on the proclamation following the
attack of the Minister of Cultre in 2006, RS shows signs of
significant preoperational planning and surveillance for a
significant amount of time prior to the actual attack.  Prior
to the attacks on the Culture Minister and the U.S. Embassy,
according to witnesses, suspicious individuals, wearing
district cleaning uniforms were seen "working" across the
street from the target.  The FBI and HNP have assessed that
RS presents a threat to the GoG, HNP, and U.S. entities in
Athens. But RS appears acutely conscious of public opinion
and would shy away from large scale or random terrorist acts.
 That said, RS is believed to have robbed and murdered a
police guard outside of the British Military Attach's
residence at gunpoint.  RS appears to be less concerned with
domestic Greek politics than with alleged trends towards
global imperialism purportedly sustained by the U.S.-led war
on terror, and its attacks do not correspond with current
domestic political events.  According to their proclamations,
RS claims that they are protecting the Greek public from
harsher attacks by Middle East extremist terrorists by
striking targets without harming the Greek public.  RS has
mentioned their support and sympathy for Hezbollah, Hamas,
the Iraqi insurgencies, and the Palestinians.
 
4) (SBU) The Assessment team recommended that the
International Terrorism Section ad the Organized Crime
Section of the HNP be cnsulted in order to conduct an
analysis of possible links between Islamic extremists,
orgnized crime rings (especially Albanian) and the anarchist
community in Greece.  The Assessment team also recommended
that an analytical review of all of the Proclamations be
conducted by a professor of political science or economics to
determine the educational history of the author.  It is also
recommended that a comparative forensic analysis of explosive
devices and tradecraft be conducted in order to identify
possible connections to members of other groups.  It is
recommended that anarchist blogs and websites be monitored,
all known anarchists/extremists traveling abroad be conduced,
and DNA samples be taken from suspected anarchists/extremists
be collected in order to compare against forensic evidence
acquired from RS investigations.
 
5) (SBU) The Assessment team identified several important
gaps in their knowledge about RS.  For example, they are
unsure whether RS has any links with domestic or
international anarchist groups, criminal organizations
(domestic or international), international terrorist
organizations, Hamas, Hezbollah, or November 17th.  No
members of RS have been identified to date, although the
assessment identifies several individuals potentially
associated with RS.  The Assessment team does not know how RS
recruits or expands its membership. (For example: Does the
group use the internet?) The team does not know how they make
bombs, how RS learned how to make bombs, or whether RS has
received any training.  It is unclear how many weapons the
group possesses, how it acquires them, whether it uses
criminal activities to finance the organization, whether it
has an arsenal or a safehouse.  The assessment also asks what
the connection is between RS and terrorist acts in Greece
that have not been claimed by any group.
SPECKHARD


http://wikileaks.ch/cable/2008/02/08ATHENS250.html

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