I began writing this book in the period of 2008-2016, collecting the materials little by little. It has been quite difficult to find original photographs and a few newspapers in the Greek language of the period that this book focuses on. The Greek state with its governmental structures has for about 70 years fed the internal and external audience with false books and articles about what has actually happened in the years 1936-1945 in regard to the Albanian minority in Chameria – Southern Epirus.
There are many photographs that have been intentionally misinterpreted by Greek historians and publicists regarding the unfounded accusation about the collaboration of the Chams with the Germans. After many years of hard work, I succeeded in finding the truth about those photographs that the Greeks claim to be the collaboration of Chams with the German Army.
I believe that my several years' work to publish this book would be rightly appreciated by the readers and critics. There has never been a collective cooperation of the Cham population with the Italian and German invader.
The aim of the Greek genocide has been the purging of the Muslim Albanians from Chameria – Southern Epirus, the looting of their property and the placement of the orthodox refugees who have migrated over time from Asia Minor.
During the displacement operation of the Ioannina Jews to the concentration camps and their extirpation, the Germans in cooperation with the Greek constabulary displaced tens of antifascist Chams. This shows clearly that the Albanians of Chameria were on the side of the Greek partisans.
The conservation by the Greek state of the houses and private land, whose true owners are the Albanians, shows clearly that the ethnic cleansing of Chameria from the Albanian element was based on an unfounded accusation with a political background about the Chams' collaboration with the Germans.
Without resolution of such a delicate issue of the Chams, there cannot be good neighbourly relations or sincere friendship between the Greeks and Albanians, whose ties of interests bound them more than they separate them.
I think that objective, scientific evaluation of the phenomena and facts I present and analyse should come before the passion; therefore, I will publish original photographs that clearly show the cooperation of the Greek state and high-ranking clergymen of the Autocephalous Greek Orthodox Church with the Italian and German invaders.
A true history is not one that is written in part true and in part false. A true history is one that is written on basis of true documents, regardless of their inconvenience.
The purpose of this book is to briefly bring forward aspects and historical documents from the period of the Greek Prime-Minister Ioannis Metaxas (1936-1941) to the Greek Genocide against the Albanian population (1944-1945). It brings to light the truth that Chams had never collectively cooperated with Italian and German Armies. There were individuals who cooperated with those invaders, but an entire nation could not be a massacre for a few individuals who had in the past served various invaders to preserve the wealth and privileges.
We will bring facts that sons of Chameria were enlisted in the Greek communist army EAM-ELAS and many of them fell martyrs for the freedom of Greece in their trust of brotherly coexistence of the two nations. We will scientifically prove those who officially collaborated with Italian and German invaders.
The book contains facts from Greek archives, 90% of our bibliography has relied on newspapers, magazines and books of Greek authors. There are also included facsimiles of newspapers from 1942, where we read articles about the collaboration of Napoleon Zervas and EDES with the German Army, facsimiles published in recent years by the CIA about the collaboration of several Greek personalities who later became the central figures of the political life in Greece as is the former president Constantine Karamanlis, etc.
This book contains dozens of photographs of the 1936-1944 period, indicating the installation of fascism and Nazism in Greece by the government of Ioannis Metaxas, photographs of the agreement for the peaceful unconditional surrender of Greek Army in April 1941 to the German Army. There are remarkable facts of Greek clergymen, Archbishops and Bishops who dropped their religious robes and wore military uniforms of EDES Army, taking part directly in the massacres against the defenceless Albanian population in Chameria.
One example was Archbishop Spyridon Vlachos who participated in the annexation of southern Albania by the Greek Army in 1914 and his key role in the peaceful surrender of the Greek Army to the German Army in April 1941. Two senior members of the Greek Orthodox Church, Bishop of Paramythia Dhorotheos and Archbishop Seraphim, participated in the Greek genocide against Cham population.
Those facts are endorsed both by photographs of that time and found in this book and by statements made by the Greek clergy over many years. There are original photographs that Greek historians have deliberately misrepresented to the reader over the years as if the Cham Albanians were in collaboration with the German Nazis, but the truth of those photographs is quite different.
This book is useful to both general readers, who will learn things that very few historians, scholars and publicists say, and to academicians as a guide to draw the truth of Greek Genocide against Albanians in Chameria out of the dust of oblivion. It is a book that is written neither for political propaganda nor needs throwing mud to the Greek people or their personalities, but to tell the truth that humanity to learn without emotional influences and political interests.
The Cham question is not simply a matter of history and confiscated properties by the Greek laws. It is primarily political because Greek state brutality and racism commenced against Albanians since 1913 in Chameria in South Epirus. There were several violent ousters of Cham Albanians: in 1913, 1922-1923, 1936-1938 and the most tragic one in 1944-1945. The Albanian Parliament recognized by Resolution on 4 April 2004 (published in the Official Bulletin in 2013) those massacres and expulsion called it “the Greek genocide against the Albanian population in Chameria during 1944-1945”.
A fast and peaceful resolution of the Cham question will relieve Greeks from anxiety from a tragic clash with Albanians. From many years now, Greece lives with the tension that one day Albania will attack Greece to recover Chameria. And if Greece was right to expel Albanians from Chameria, why does it live with the anxiety of a war between two countries? Greeks, being aware that they massacred, robbed and expulsed Albanians from Chameria wrongfully, without any actual proof that they were German collaborators, will always have an anxiety in their souls, a concern for the sin committed against the Chams. Since Greeks show of being great believers where church and state are inseparable, then May God have mercy for Greece and Greeks for the sins they committed.
A peaceful solution of the Cham question will start when Greece will firstly abolish the Law of War with Albania, then allow Chams in organized groups to visit the graves of their ancestors, dilapidated houses, then undertake serious steps that will have a positive impact on the psychology of trust among the two nations. These actions are not actually impossible if there is a true will among the political classes of two countries for peace and friendship by saying and defending the truth. The truth that should be spoken together, Greeks and Albanians, if we want good neighbourly relations, if we want a peaceful and secure future.
Without resolution of Cham question there will never be friendship and sincere neighbourly relations between the two nations. No one knows the future and the beginning of the century XXI reveals that there are more Albanians than Greeks in Southeast Europe.
The above article consists of extracts from Arben P. Llalla's book:
“The Greek collaborationists, designers and leaders of the genocide in Chameri”, Tetova, April, 2017.
Read the book online for free
(190 pages, PDF file, 7.81 MB)