WORLD WAR II AND CIVIL WAR
The participation of Greece in WWII, after the negative response of I. Metaxas to the Italian ultimatum letter, introduced the entire Greek population and especially border areas, to a bloody confrontation with huge human and material losses. This small country fought first against Italy and then suffered the German invasion and the violent effects of that Occupation. Persecutions, executions and hunger marked the memories of people across the country. Populations were decimated, the economy destroyed along and the countryside depopulated. The retreat of the occupation troops from Greece in October 1944 did not bring an end to the war, as it did in the rest of Europe, as a new cycle of fighting – civil clashes – started between the Greek government army and the Democratic Army of Greece. The civil war ended with the defeat of the Democratic Army in August 1949 and left post-war Greece with a deep political and ideological schism.