When Lady Liberty turns a Blind Eye: United States Foreign Policy during the Invasion of Greece, 1940-1941


  • Athena Stephanopoulos Wichita State University


United States-Greek foreign policy, Axis powers, World War II, Bonito Mussolini, Great Depression


"I remember hiding in an oven when I was ten," she lamented. "The Germans had broken down our door and were demanding to take all the children away from our parents, probably to kill us first. When they peeked in oven window, I held my breath and prayed that the pots and pans were piled over my head because if not, I would be burned alive. That's when I first knew of fear."1 The months that followed Thomai Stephan's first encounter with German "hunters" as she deemed them, were no less frightening or menacing than the day she hid in the oven. Soon after the hunters left her village in northern Greece, Thomai and her family labored through a series of barriers to escape her now occupied community. "Oh it was petrifying. They stole all of our animals so that we'd starve; we ran into the caves and hid for days so they wouldn't find us; and when more came in from Macedonia, everyone dug a secret trench with a wooden cover piled under dirt and waited for their footsteps to soften—that day I almost suffocated to death."2