reports in the Israeli press accusing Turkey of using chemical weapons against its Kurdish population; and that Turkey has made a secret agreement with Iran to filter weapons to Israel’s deadly Lebanese enemy, Hezbollah; while it’s also been widely reported that Turkey has snubbed the Israeli ambassador to Ankara by not inviting him to the dinner celebrating the breaking of the Ramadan fast.
The other interesting factor that may have long-term repercussions for Greco-Isreali relations is the discovery of vast hydrocarbon deposits between Israel and Cyprus and the seemingly smooth negotiations between the two countries as to how these can be exploited to mutual advantage – and to the exclusion of Turkey, which believes that the Republic of Cyprus is an illegitimate government and has no right to delineate Exclusive Economic Zones around its territorial waters.
Finally, although the resurgence of interest in Greek Jewry has been around for about a decade now, with Greece and Israel forging a new relationship, we can expect this interest to gather momentum. Indeed, yesterday, I read this fascinating account of the fate of the Greek Jews in the Nazi extermination camps – No other Jews like them.
The article notes that Greek Jews – Sephardim from Thessaloniki and Romaniots from elsewhere in Greece – were admired by other Jews and by the Germans for their indomitable spirit and national solidarity and pride, and goes on to give an extraordinarily moving account of the remarkable Sonderkommando uprising in Auschwitz-Birkenau in 1944 ‘planned and executed completely by Greeks, waving improvised Greek flags, and accompanied by the strains of the Greek national anthem’; an episode that is to be turned into a film.