Monday, August 26, 2013

Hellas Weekly, June 18, 1943

Hellas Weekly, June 18, 1943, Page 4


Although the question of education in Greece under enemy occupation has retreated to the background in the face of the frightful famine, it remains nevertheless one of the manifestations of the nation's life that has been the most cruelly mutilated by the enemy in their endeavour to sap the vigour of the national spirit at its very roots.

Greece has been partitioned into three spheres of influence: the Bulgarian, the Italian, and the German. The conditions of education vary according to the special aim of the Occupying Power.

The Bulgarian occupation of Western Thrace and Eastern Macedonia is the most pernicious. Bulgaria's aim is the denationalisation of these areas either by the expulsion or the extermination of the Greek inhabitants. Schools and teachers have been the objects of more persecution than any other section of the community.

So far as is known all the schools in Eastern Macedonia and Western Thrace have been closed. This state of affairs followed the occasion then all teachers were called to the police station and informed that the occupation authorities had no intention of impeding their work: the teachers would be allowed to continue their functions, but on one condition - that they spoke and taught Bulgarian. As not one of them fulfilled that condition, they were not allowed to teach.

A few days later they were given 24 hours in which to leave the country; as a consequence more than 150,000 children of all ages were deprived of their accustomed schooling, of their teachers, and of the school premises as well.

The school buildings of those provinces were built under a comprehensive educational scheme, and were models of modern architecture. Most, and the best of them, were taken over for war purposes by the Bulgarians.

The Bulgarians are trying to force the population to learn the Bulgarian dialect. Greek is not only barred from schools, but also from conversation in the streets. The Bulgarians hope that by those measures they will force the of nursery school age to learn only Bulgarian and thereby forget their mother tongue, or at least never grow used to its written signs; that they may grow estranged from their elders, and from the circle of ideas, mental pictures and traditions that form the basis of a common culture.

They hope to introduce in this way the Greek community a mental disruption and distortion of feeling.

The Germans have allowed Bulgarian influence to spread further: the Bulgarians are now taking part in the policing of Salonica. In that city the second university of Greece has its seat; there are also some affiliated schools of technical importance - agricultural, veterinary, surgical, and so on.

The flourishing university has been closed and its professors dismissed.

- From "The Schoolmaster."


Enter your email address:

© Macedonia Documents 2007 Template feito por Templates para Você