Saturday, 29 October 2011

Oxi Day

Yesterday, 28th October marked the anniversary for OXI DAY! Our twitter followers did a great job in spreading the word and raising a bit more awareness on this special day for the Greeks.

A quick run down of what it is for those of who you maybe are a bit unsure or want to know more...

It's a massive celebration in Greece and Cyprus each year and is marked as a national bank holiday where there are parades and Greek flags everywhere!

It all started back in 1940 during the second world war, when the Italian dictator Mussolini, gave an ultimatum to the Greek prime minister Metaxas, to surrender or face war with the Italian army of 44 million against Greece's 7 million.

Ioannis Metaxas

Metaxas being the true proud Greek he was, said "OXI" meaning NO! Even though they were much smaller and didn't have as big an army as the Italians (since when has that ever stopped us!) the true Greek spirit came through and everyone echoed "oxi" hence "oxi day" celebrated on 28th October. This was a massive courageous act but also proved to the world that the Greeks would fight to the end to defend their country and their honour.

How it ended:
After a few weeks of battle, the Greeks managed to push the Italians back into Albania. The Italians were struggling against the Greeks despite their massive army and defenses, so they called in Hitler to intervene. 

The Greeks then fought the Germans for 5 long weeks; this delay is what ended up determining the outcome of WW2, woo go Greeks! Whilst the Greeks were giving the Germans a run for their money, the British were able to defeat Mussolini's army in North Africa and secured Cyprus too, opa! Because of the Greeks fighting so hard and delaying things, the Germans were also never able to gain control of the British or Russian forces which ruined Hitler's whole plan.

American 1942 poster supporting Greece.

Although this was an amazing thing the Greeks did by saying "oxi" that day, it came at a price and about 1 million Greeks lost their lives. Winston Churchill got it spot on when he said "Today we say that Greeks fight like heroes, from now on we will say that heroes fight like Greeks."

Hope you all had a wonderful "oxi" day and never lose that Greek fighting spirit!

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