Pontic Community Calls for Protest in Athens as Pontic Genocide is Removed From High School Curriculum

genoktonia_pontosThe Greek government is under fire for its attitude toward the Pontic Genocide after the Education Minister’s comments were followed by revelations that high school students in Greece are no longer being taught about the genocide.

New Democracy MP Miltiadis Varvitsiotis raised the issue of the genocide’s absence from high school teachings in the Greek parliament on Wednesday. Varvitsiotis referenced a ministerial decision that was issued in June by former Education Minister and current Culture Minister Aristidis Mpaltas. The alleged ministerial decision removed the topic of Hellenism by the Black Sea for the period between the 19th and the 20th century, from the curriculum of 12th graders. Pontus is located in the Black Sea’s southern coast.

The Pontic Genocide took place between 1913 and 1923. Around 350,000 people were killed by Turkish troops through a variety of means including starvation and deportations via death marches.

On Monday, Greek Education Minister Nikos Filis expressed his personal opinion that the systemic slaughter committed by Turkish troops was not a genocide, based on the scientific meaning of the term. The minister called for a separation between “a bloody ethnic cleansing and a genocide”.

This caused a vocal reaction from the Greek political opposition parties as well as from the Independent Greeks (ANEL), SYRIZA’s government coalition partner, who criticized Filis for his comments. Political opposition is calling for Filis’s removal from his ministerial post.

The Greek parliament officially recognized the Pontic Genocide in 1994 and also adopted a law in September 2014, by which individuals who refuse to acknowledge the genocide face a fine between 5,000 and 20,000 euros and a prison sentence. Fines for genocide deniers who hold a public office range between 10,000 to 25,000 euros.

In response to these recent developments, the Panpontic Federation of Greece (POE) has called for a demonstration at the Syntagma Square in Athens, in front of the Greek parliament on Thursday, November 5, at 4 p.m. The POE’s announcement notes that the demonstration is against Filis’s comments as well as the Greek government’s general stance toward issues that concern Greek Pontians.


  • John

    Take out religion from the curriculum would be smarter. The Pontic genocide is a fact.
    Maybe Mr Filis wants to put the books of David Icke to he curriculum of Greek schools: sadly he would get popular for doing that.

  • Phil

    One can only hope that any Pontians that voted for Marxist Tsipiras are intelligent enough to now recognize their mistake.

  • Charles Kerry

    I think children should be taught history so the same injustice doesn’t happen again. When u try to hide history from the children then u are considered a traitor and a criminal in my point of view. To me its like saying thousands of people died in vain when your own government doesn’t want to teach what happened to the Greeks living in Anatolia. The past injustice should be taught as a constant reminder that Greeks need to keep there guard up when it comes to a neighboring country that constantly does violent acts against humanity . I believe a leopard never changes its spots ,and past actions determine future actions.

  • MSMlies

    Early yesterday the Nationalist Golden Dawn party announced via its spokesperson Ilias Kasidiaris that it is taking legal action against Marxist SYRIZA MP Nikos Filis, demanding that he be prosecuted for denial of the Pontian genocide. Search You Tube for: “Μήνυση Χρυσής Αυγής κατά Φίλη για κακόβουλη άρνηση της γενοκτονίας του Ποντιακού Ελληνισμού”

    Later that day 3 Golden Dawn MPs, Ιωάννης Σαχινίδης, Ιωάννης Αϊβατίδης and Χρήστος Χατζησάββας arrived at Areios Pagos – Supreme Court of Greece, to officially file charges against the antihellenic, antichristian, Marxist SYRIZA MP Nikos Filis for denying that the genocide of 350,000 Pontian Greeks at the hands of ISLAMIC Turkish barbarians occurred. Search You Tube for: “Δηλώσεις βουλευτών Χρυσής Αυγής για μήνυση κατά Φίλη”

    Golden Dawn MP Χρήστος Χατζησάββας is of Pontian Greek heritage.

    Between 1915 – 1922 ISLAMIC Turkish troops slaughtered 900,000 Christian Greek civilians in Asia Minor, and another 350,000 Christian Greek men, women and children were slaughtered by ISLAMIC Turks in Pontus.

    Notice that ONLY Golden Dawn has initiated legal proceedings against SYRIZA MP Nikos Filis, no other political party, neither the pseudo conservative ND which led a ND-KKE coalition government in 1989, nor pseudo nationalist ANEL, which is junior coalition partner to Marxist SYRIZA have taken any legal action against Nikos Filis.

    Notice also the glaring absence of condemnations against Nikos Filis from so called “anti-racist” organizations, one can imagine their outcry if an MP from any Greek political party had made a statement alleging that the Jewish holocaust wasn’t genocide, he/she would’ve been fired from their post, and be sitting in a prison cell awaiting trial for violating Greece’s genocide denial laws.

  • MSMlies

    Between 1915 – 1922 ISLAMIC Turkish troops slaughtered 900,000 Christian Greek civilians in Asia Minor, and another 350,000 Christian Greek men, women and children were slaughtered by ISLAMIC Turks in Pontus. What is less spoken about today is that about 100,000 Pontian Greeks, including 37,000 in the Caucasus area were deported to the gulags of Central Asia in 1949 during STALIN’S post-war deportations. 
    The Communist KKE party was Communist Stalin’s proxy force in Greece, so it should come as no surprise when Communists and their Marxist comrades like Nikos Filis attempt to deny the genocide of 350,000 Greek Orthodox Christian Pontians at the hands of Islamic Turkish barbarians. Communist treason doesn’t stop there, when Nazi Germany invaded Greece, Adolf Hitler was allied with Stalin, -(See Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact)- so the treasonous Communist KKE offered no resistance to the German invasion. 

  • Lou

    John, they already took religion out of school. They are methodically taking out what’s left so that this next generation of youth has no concept of reality. Frankly sir, you too are a fool! Perhaps you can explain why it is smart to not have religion is school.

    Maybe we should just let the Stalins of the world take our children!

    “Give me just one generation of youth, and I’ll transform the whole world.”
    ― Vladimir Ilich Lenin

  • ivas4

    German engineering of the genocidal policies against the Anatolian Greeks was widely recognized.

    Germany’s disregard for Greek lives didn’t begin during WWII, however. It can also be traced back to WWI. For Germany, any policy that advanced its economic or commercial interests, no matter how horrendous and inhumane was and, apparently, still is acceptable.

    Just prior to WWI, Talaat and Enver, two of the three key Pashas ruling the Ottoman Empire’s Young Turk Party, formally known as the Committee of Union and Progress (CUP), were firmly committed to Germany’s vision … at least the part they thought they understood. As Minister of War, Enver suggested that the German General, Otto Liman von Sanders, be appointed Inspector General. It gave von Sanders an extraordinary amount of control over the Ottoman military. According to U.S. Ambassador to the Ottoman Empire, Henry Morgenthau, Sr., Germany dragged Turkey into the Great War with the support of only a few of those top Young Turk officials. It was a war the Ottomans were poorly equipped to fight.

    At least one month before the Ottomans openly declared war on 29 October, 1914, Germany’s growing control over the Empire became clear. Germany was already requisitioning Ottoman supplies in Germany’s name for her own use. Referring to a September 29, 1914 document for the requisitioning of a shipload of oil cake, the German Ambassador to the Ottoman Empire, Baron von Wangenheim (1912-1915), boasted to Morgenthau that he had requisitioned the lot by the steamship Derindje for the German Government. To Morgenthau, this proved “Germany was exercising the powers of sovereignty at Constantinople.”

    It wasn’t the only thing Germany and the Young Turks were requisitioning. The confiscation of farm animals and everything else needed for the war left citizens destitute and starving. And without their men who were drafted for the war, there was no one to work the land or care for the family, which caused hundreds of thousands of deaths, not only on the battlefield, but at home. Soldiers were sent to fight poorly dressed for war. Some had no shoes, and reports of Turkish soldiers pounding on doors and begging for bread were rampant. Morgenthau reported: “The Turkish Government paid its soldiers 25 cents a month, and gave the families a separation allowance of $1.20 a month. As a result thousands were dying from lack of food and many more were enfeebled by malnutrition.”

    So where do the Greeks come into the picture? Indigenous Greeks had lived in what became Turkey for over three millennia, two millennia before the first Turkish tribes invaded. German historian, Hilmar Kaiser, collected German World War I propaganda that “was addressed to both Ottoman and German audiences” in which both Anatolian Greeks and Armenians were targeted. Kaiser writes, “the mass murder of Armenians had opened up new opportunities for German trade and investment.” This held true for the mass murder and displacement of Ottoman Greeks and Assyrians as well, as noted in The Times headline: “Extermination of Greeks in Turkey. A German Plot Disclosed.” German engineering of the genocidal policies against the Anatolian Greeks was widely recognized.

    M. Politis, Minister for Foreign Affairs, today laid before the Chamber four new documents proving conclusively that the persecutions of which the Greeks at Aivali and in other parts of Asia Minor were the victims were carried out in accordance with a plan for the extermination of the Greek race in Turkey devised by the German General Staff, which aided and supervised its execution.

    Greek men were conscripted into labor battalions where they were worked and starved to death–again leaving women, children and the aged to fend for themselves–and whole Greek villages were emptied with no provisions for the survival. In fact, to insure their demise, it was forbidden to buy or sell to the displaced Greeks, or help them in any way. In some areas of Anatolia, the Greeks were simply massacred.

    With King Constantine I on the throne of Greece, Germany was sure Greece would not protest against the annihilation of the Greeks under Ottoman rule. Or, if she did, make only token protestations for appearances. Born of Danish and Russian parentage, but more importantly, married to the sister of the Germany kaiser, Wilhelm II, Constantine would make sure Greece would also remain neutral during WWI while he was king, a war planned by Germany and Austria.

    As late as June 1, 1918, Greek massacres were continuing. As the Chicago Daily Tribune reported: “Million Greeks are massacred: Thrown into Sea – Germans Made the Turk More Efficient in His Murders.”

    At least 1,000,000 Greeks, men, women, and children have perished as a result of organized massacres and deportations by ‘the Turco-Teutons’ in Asiatic Turkey, … ‘Those of us who were between the ages of 16 and 60 were drafted into the army,’ Macrides said. ‘Our women and children and the older men were placed temporarily in homes and orphanages until the time when the opportunity offered to dispose of them in the approved Turco-Teuton fashion, which in this instance turned out to be by wholesale drowning.’

    Morgenthau reported that the Young Turks were so successful against the Greeks, they decided to go after the other Christian ‘races’ as well, the Armenians and Assyrians. Between 1913-1923, Greek deaths amounted to over one million, 353,000 of whom were Pontic Greeks, Assyrians 275,000, and Armenians 1.5 million, bringing the total Christian deaths to three millions or more.

    This is not meant to imply that the Ottoman Turks are off the hook for the mass murder of their Christians subjects. According to then German Minister at Athens, Baron Hans Freiherr von Wangenheim (1909-12), as early as July 24, 1909, the Young Turks had already decided to “wage a war of extermination against the Christians of the Empire. .. They would begin in the heartland of Anatolia, where Turkey had the greatest control, and where outsiders had the least access to observe what was being done to the Christians.” The Young Turks were apparently waiting for a convenient moment. The Great War and Germany gave them that moment. With such control in Turkey, Germany could have prevented the mass murder and displacement of Anatolian Greeks. Instead, as The Times reported, the “German General Staff, …. aided and supervised its execution.”

    As British historian Arnold Toynbee understood it:

    Germany’s economic activity in Turkey has been not for prosperity but for power, not for peace but for war. In developing Turkey, Germany is simply developing the ‘Central Europe’ scheme of a military combine self-contained economically and challenging the world in arms[29]. Germany is concerned with Turkey, not for her splendid past and future, but for her miserable present; for Turkey–as she is, and only as she is–is a vital chequer on the chess-board where Germany has been playing her game of world power, or “des staatlich-machtlichen Interessens,” as Dr. Wiedenfeld would say. Therefore Germany does not eye the lands and peoples under Ottoman dominion with a view to their common advantage and her own. She selects a “piece” among them which she can keep under her thumb and so control the square. [Sultan] Abd-ul-Hamid was her first pawn, and when the Young Turk Party swept him off the board she adopted them and their colour; for by hook or by crook, through this agency or that, Turkey had to be commanded or Germany’s play was spoilt.

  • ivas4

    “when Nazi Germany invaded Greece, Adolf Hitler was allied with Stalin, -(See Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact)- so the treasonous Communist KKE offered no resistance to the German invasion. ”

    this is just untrue on so many levels.

    1) allied until they weren’t . this also means that the Metaxas Regime was also “allied” with Stalin, as they were “allied” with Hitler pre-invasion again until they weren’t. riddle me that

    2) those serving in the military (mandatory) were from all sorts of political ideology from left to right

    3) the largest resistance force AFTER the invasion on the mainland was EAM/ELAS, eventhough most of their members were NOT communist. for some reason in Golden Dawn world the invasion and occupation somehow ended in April 1941 and anything after that date never happened

    4) and most importantly Golden Dawn (previously known as the security battalions aka nazi collaborator traitors) NEVER fought the nazis and in fact collaborated with them and murdered tens of thousands of Greeks and even created a safe passage for the German army to leave post occupation. KASIDIARIS’ MICHALOLIAKOS’ AND THE REST OF THE CURRENT GOLDEN DAWN MPS ALL COME FROM FAMILIES WHO WERE NAZI COLLABORATORS AND TRAITORS. THIS IS WELL DOCUMENTED NONE OF THEM PARTICIPATED IN ANY SORT OF RESISTANCE

    5) the people who fought at roupel at the other heroic fortresses on the metaxas line vs the German invasion and then over the course of the next month as Germany made it’s way though Greece ended up joining various resistance organizations from EDES to PAO. Contrast this with the Golden Dawn collaborators

  • Thomas Georgiades

    Those who forget history are destined
    to repeat it.

  • Phil

    To be blunt, as Greek that considers the actually etymology of the word Hellene… Christianity has no special place in my heart.

    No one is arguing to ban religion. Only to take it out of public schools. Religion can still exist outside of school. Pray to a religion that ancient Hellenes despised all you wish. Just remember when you visit Olympia whose gods that is a reference to.

  • Phil

    I agree with you there. Mixing religion and state is a bad idea. It breeds ignorance rather than reason (since of course those that believe the religion will attempt to treat it as factual to all rather than their personal religious beliefs)

    One look no further than places like ISIS controlled territories to see the destination.(or middle age Christianity for that matter)

  • Phil

    Good point. Unfortunately around half the Greek population has forgotten history and now votes for sundry Marxists.

  • MSMlies

    The KKE glorifies Stalin as “one of the most eminent leaders of the proletariat of the USSR and also of the international communist movement” (“J.V. Stalin: His Enormous Contribution to the Cause of Building Socialism,” Rizospastis, 17-19 December 2010) LET THAT FACT SINK IN. The KKE glorifies the mass murderer Stalin who in 1949 deported 100,000 Pontian Greeks, including 37,000 in the Caucasus area to the gulags of Central Asia. Got anything to say about that ivas4? Or will you as usual remain totally silent on the antihellenic TREASON of the Communist KKE party?

    The Communist Party of Greece ΚΚΕ (Κομμουνιστικό Κόμμα Ελλάδας) was founded on 4 November 1918 by Avraam Benaroya, a Sephardic Jewish teacher in Thessaloniki.

    In 1931, Nikos Zachariadis, with the support of Stalin’s Comintern, became the new leader of KKE. The KKE Old Central Committee was formed with two key members elected by the KKE 6th Party Conference. In his memoirs for the Greek Civil war, C. M. Woodhouse (the British liaison with Greek resistance groups during World War II) wrote: “The ‘Old Central Committee’ interpreted a directive issued by Comintern as indicating collaboration with the German and Italian dictatorships, given the Hitler-Stalin alliance.” NOTE: The Comintern is an international Communist organisation founded in Moscow in 1919.

    On the other hand, Woodhouse argues, Georgios Siantos, and Nikos Zachariadis, took the opposite view that KKE must support Metaxas in his fight against Mussolini.

    On 16 November 1940, Zachariadis accused the Greek Army of waging a “fascist” and “imperialistic war” and appealed to the USSR for peaceful intervention, thus aligning his position with that of the “Old Central Committee”.

    WOW – so here we have the General Secretary of the KKE, Nikos Zachariadis calling the Greek army “fascist and imperialistic” for resisting Mussolini’s Italian troops, and he calls on the Soviet Union to directly intervene in Greece! This is the TREASONOUS Communist KKE party that you so ardently defend ivas4.

  • Phil

    Watching you defend communists while MSmiles defends fascists… while both you claim to support Hellenism… is comical.

  • Phil

    Watching you defend communists while MSmiles defends fascists… while both you claim to support Hellenism… is comical.

  • MSMlies

    Watching you defend phony, pseudo conservative New Democracy, especially former ND leader Antonis Samaras, despite ND authorising the first Mosque in Athens since Athens was liberated from the Ottoman occupation, despite Antonis Samaras announcing his plans to grant illegal immigrants and their children the right to vote in Greek elections, – (To WATCH Samaras making this announcement search You Tube for: “Ο Σαμαράς δίνει ψήφο στους λαθρομετανάστες”) – despite the 2013 opening ceremony for the Thessaloniki Mustafa Kemal Atatürk museum being led by NEW DEMOCRACY MP Akis Gerontopoulos (WATCH New Democracy MP Akis Gerontopoulos lead the Thessaloniki Mustafa Kemal Atatürk museum in opening ceremony on You Tube by searching: “ΑΠΕ-ΜΠΕ: Εγκαίνια Μουσείου Κεμάλ Ατατούρκ στη Θεσσαλονίκη”) ….would be comical if it wheren’t so despicable, and your claim to be a patriot whilst supporting ND would be comical if it wheren’t so hypocritical.

  • Phil

    You are in no position to lecture on conservatism or ethics or even Hellenism when you support a fascist party that admires Hitler. (who murdered many Greeks and handed over part of Macedonia to Bulgarians ).

  • Phil

    Even after all this time you still don’t understand me Miles. You think my underlying motives is “conservatism”?

    The is only one ism for me. I will move in the direction that best serves it.

  • MSMlies

    Who is more genuinely uncompromisingly nationalist, who can be trusted to never sell out Greece on the Macedonia name dispute, and other issues of national importance, such as immigration. Golden Dawn or New Democracy? Answer that question honestly and you will then find that you belong with Golden Dawn.

    I can’t understand your inability to see and accept that which is obvious, namely that Greece will die just as surely under ND as it will under SYRIZA the only difference being that SYRIZA will demographically erase Greece within a decade, whilst ND might take 2 decades to take Greece to a demographic point where it is irrevocably lost. In this respect ND is more dangerous than SYRIZA because rapid change is easily identifiable, immediately noticeable and leads to more resistance, whilst slow, steady change doesn’t lead to mass resistance, and kills silently, but just as surely. By supporting ND and hating SYRIZA, all you are doing is saying that you hate SYRIZA for bringing rapid death to Greece, but support ND because they kill Greece more slowly.

  • Phil

    Mosques should be allowed in Greece. What should not be allowed, if illegal migrants. Nor should the government be paying to build any religous institutions.

    Considering fascists were mutdering Greeks for Hitler, while trying to wipe out Hellenism, Greeks that support fascists claiming to stand for Hellenism is both idiotic, dangerous and comical at the same time.