Εξώθηση και καταστολή, βόμβες και ψηφοδέλτια : η Βρετανία και ο κυπριακός αγώνας, 1954-1958

Ευάνθης Χατζηβασιλείου

Abstract


The article suggests that in reacting to the Enosis claim of the Greek
Cypriots during 1954-58, Britain strove to protect mainly its position in the
Middle East, which had come under attack after the rise of Arab nationalism
and the relative decline of London as a world power. However, with such
international political and strategic priorities, the British came to underestimate
the strength of the Enosis movement and the willingness of the
Greek Cypriots to fight if freedom were denied to them; the British also
overestimated their capability of controlling the internal situation in Cyprus.
In this way, London was constantly bringing the Greek Cypriots to a dead-end,
and this contributed to the outbreak of the revolt.
On the other hand, after the outbreak of the revolt, and especially after
the start of EOKA’s armed campaign, the drive to crush the revolt always
formed one of the pillars of British policy. EOKA was seen as a major opponent, which threatened a British asset in a sensitive and crucial part of
the globe. The article also discusses the role of the British governors
(Armitage, Harding and Foot) and suggests that the soldier-govemor, Sir John Harding, was much more in control of his services than the perceived “pro-
Greek” and indisputably liberal Sir Hugh Foot, who was a man of good will
but this was not enough in late colonial Cyprus.

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