Historical story

Manolis Glezos:A year without the last partisan - When you drink wine you will also drink wine from me

It was June 2017 when the great fighter of the Left, Manolis Glezos, who left us a year ago, presented his book "Acronymia" in the event hall of the Hellenic Parliament.

In an emotionally charged speech, Manolis Glezos with tears in his eyes then sent his own message which has a huge symbolic value.

"Dear friends, on the eve of executions, on the eve of every battle, we used to gather and chat and say "if you live, don't forget me", "if the volley doesn't find you when you meet people on the street, you'll say good morning from me too, and when you drink wine you will drink wine from me, and when you hear the splash of the waves you will hear it for me, and when you hear the wind passing through the leaves, when you hear the rustling of the leaves, you will hear it for me, and when you dance you will dance for me too". "Can I forget? The hardest thing for me is that I am alive and the people I fought with, the people we faced death with, my friends, are not alive today. Can I forget them? Is it possible to forget this world? It is not possible. And that's why I have this versatility, because I carry out orders or try to carry out their orders".

"And because this gathering is not a mere audience, but you participate as active citizens in political becoming, each in his field undertakes to make these people's dreams come true. And if I die, my being will haunt you to do what you must do. Don't think you'll ever escape me".

The uncompromising fighter

Manolis Glezos was at the forefront of the struggles throughout his life, fighting against every dictatorship, every form of absolutist power. From when he was tearing the glory of the Third Reich, to the junta of the Colonels.

He was sentenced a total of 28 times for his political and resistance activity, of which three times to death.

His total time in prison was 11 years and 5 months, while he completed 4 years and 6 months in exile, while nine assassination attempts were made against him. In 1968 from exile, he condemned the intervention of the Soviet Union in Czechoslovakia. His continuous judicial adventures until his final release with the general amnesty of 1971 often provoked the reaction of the Greek and international public opinion.

The political activity of Manolis Glezos had never been curtailed by his persecutions. In 1951, although imprisoned, he was elected a member of parliament with the EDA. In 1961, he was elected a regular member of the Central Committee of the KKE by the 8th Congress of the party. the event of the military coup, on April 21, 1967, he was arrested and detained for 4 years in Goudi, Pikermi, General Security (Gendarmerie), Gyaros, Partheni Leros. He was released in 1971 by Oropos. He left the KKE in 1968.

In 1981 he was elected Member of Parliament for Athens with PASOK and in 1984 MEP. In the 1985 elections, he was re-elected MP with PASOK. In the parliamentary elections of 2000, he was a candidate on the ballot of the Coalition. In 2002, he formed the political group Active Citizens. This political group, in cooperation with the Coalition and other smaller parties of the Left, through SYRIZA, participated in the parliamentary elections of 2004. On May 6, 2012, he was elected MP with SYRIZA.

In the 2014 European elections, he was elected MEP with SYRIZA with more than 438,000 preference crosses, first in preference crosses among all candidates, of all parties. Despite his support for SYRIZA, Glezos publicly expressed his disagreement with the 2015 loan agreement.

He also took a position in favor of "no" in the 2015 referendum, but also against the 2018 Prespa Agreement.

On June 17, 2015, Glezos submitted his resignation from the European Parliament, effective from July 8, 2015 as he had announced that he would leave at the end of one term.

In 1962 he was awarded by the USSR with the International Lenin Peace Prize. In fact, Charles de Gaulle, during the period of his first judicial adventures, described him as "Europe's first partisan".

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