This book provides a very clear account of the turmoil in Greece during the occupations in WW2 and the subsequent Civil war. As a researcher, it gave me genuine insight into not only the events themselves, but the complex relationships that divided and almost destroyed the country. This is a must for anyone who wants to or needs to get behind the holiday version of Greece, and come to understand the tensions that still emerge from time to time. Woodhouse's personal experiences also show the British perspectives on the time, and the contradictory appproaches which contributed to the tragedy of the Civil War
The civil war in Greece still has major ramifications for the country today. Anybody with an interest in Greece's present predicament will learn much from this book. Chris Woodhouse was not merely a greatly respected historian and authority on modern Greece but helped shape the events recorded in his excellent book.
A comprehensive, even-handed account of the conflict full of hundreds of details you won't find anywhere else: Woodhouse was there and saw much of it for himself. Throughout he avoids the judgemental tone of many secondary sources about the conflict and displays remarkable insights into the particular mindset of the Greek communists. Ignore any disparaging comments you may have heard that Woodhouse was a British officer and so couldn't possibly produce a balanced account. If anything, the conclusion that British mistakes were largely to blame undermines those criticisms, and even the briefest glance shows remarkable maturity and depth of analysis. This is THE book to read about the Greek Civil War.
I was hoping for clarification of the events and the personalities involved in the Greek resistence and the subsequent Civil War. Richard Clogg provides a very good introduction and attempts to put events over the tumultuous years of resistence and post war Civil War in perspective. However, Woodhouse's book is so bogged down in detail, jumping from one subject to the next, the apparent arbitrary mention of key players and all the numerous minor persons involved in those years, makes it practically impossible to gain a clear understanding of the chronolgy, the significance of specific events, the ebb and flow, the ascendancy and decline of the various factions involved that came to define Greece's modern history, to the extent that one is just left with a sense of immense frustration and disappointment. It seems as if Woodhouse transcribed his notes taken during this period, adding official communiques, without making sufficient attempt to edit his notes and to put them into a meaningful context.