Friday, 4 December 2015

Cypro-Νationalism, Cypro-Chauvinism, the Cyprus Problem and the Bizonal “Solution”

Cypro-Νationalism, Cypro-Chauvinism, the Cyprus Problem and the Bizonal “Solution”


Cypro-nationalism is the movement for the creation of a Cypriot nation within the Greek Cypriot community. This movement appeared in Cyprus after the creation of the Cyprus state. It was actually a direct offspring of the new state itself during the mid-sixties.  Cypro-nationalism is a product of the Cyprus state and it also identifies with the state itself.

Cypro-chauvinism is the evolution of Cypro-nationalism within the Greek Cypriot community into a Cyprus centered aggressive, arrogant and vulgar chauvinism that is predominantly racist towards the Greek people in general and the Greek Cypriots in specific. Cypro-chauvinists embrace the idea of racial superiority and even the Nazi concept of genetic predetermination.

The following is addressed to open minded people within all communities of Cyprus. It addresses the rise of Cypro-nationalism within the Greek-Cypriot community of Cyprus and it’s evolution to anti-Hellenic Cypro-chauvinism. The present paper wishes to shed light to the goals and actions of Cypriot nationalists and the way their chauvinist actions have influenced the Cyprus problem leading to their ultimate goal for a bizonal solution in Cyprus.


The roots and evolution of Cypro-nationalism

The current discourse on the Cyprus problem emphasizes on nationalism as the main root of the problem. Greek and Turkish nationalism are presented as the main reasons for the division of the island. The intelligentsia in both communities created a narrative in which nationalism is perceived as the primordial sin for which the people of our island are paying until today. Yet lurking in the dark, laughing at us and our goodhearted naivety is the real undetected and predominant nationalism on the island.

Cypro-nationalism is the nationalism no one talks about. Yet it is my opinion that this nationalism is more responsible for our misfortunes than any other nationalism on the island.

Cypro-nationalism is the dynamic movement towards the invention and creation of the new nation that never existed before in the course of history. This nation is the Cypriot nation.

Cypro-nationalism is the imperialist imported notion of a Cypriot nation that was used as a counter measure against the will of the Greek Cypriot community for self-determination and eventually Unification (Enosis) with Greece. It was introduced to the island by the imperialists and found supporters within the Greek Cypriot community among the ruling class, the bourgeois, the bureaucrats already working for the empire and the clergy. It was later embraced and promoted by the leadership of the so called left. People who preferred their own independent kingdom embraced the notion of a different and distinct nation and embarked on the idea of creating one.

The origins of the Cypriot nationalism can be found in the efforts of the British Empire to create a Cypriot identity opposing the feelings and thoughts of the Greek Cypriot community which perceived itself as Greek and was demanding – in every way possible – Unification (Enosis) with Greece.

The imperialists embarked on an interesting journey with the effort of creating a pre-existing indigenous ancient culture the Eteocypriots. The excellent work by Michael Given “Inventing the Eteocypriots: imperialist archaeology and the manipulation of ethnic identity” in the Journal of Mediterranean Archaeology 11: 3-29. (1998) is a fine specimen on how imperialism manipulates history and archaeology to promote its purposes [1].

In the beginning and during the British rule there was no support for the notion of a new nation. The Greek Cypriot community perceived itself as Greek and was fighting for unification (Enosis) with Greece. Even the left which opposed the armed struggle against the British was identifying itself as ethnically Greek. It was much later that the imperialist doctrine found its followers. Those came among an interesting blend of local capitalists, bankers and the leaderships of the church and the “left”. Yet it was during the imperialist occupation of the island that the seeds for the Cypriot nation were planted.

In Cyprus case the creation of the independent Cyprus state was the cornerstone for the creation of the new nation.

To understand the motives of the extraordinary and contradicting band of Cypriot nationalists we have to take into account an old Greek proverb: “It is better to be first in the village than last in the city”. The Cypriot nationalists preferred to be the new kings of Cyprus than having anything to do with Greece and the Greek identity.

Understanding this we can proceed to explain Makarios change from Enosis to independence. Makarios made sure that he would have a kingdom of his own and that he would be the king. The new state mechanism and its economic infrastructure were ready and waiting. Bankers, capitalists, part of the clergy and the bourgeois along with the bureaucrats of the previous regime were the embryo of the nation to be. There was however an important setback. The Cypriot nation was lacking mass support and connection with the people.

This connection with a mass of people was provided by the pseudo-communist
political party of Cyprus, AKEL. AKEL had openly opposed the armed struggle
of EOKA against the British during the 50’s.

It is obvious that AKEL’s leadership accepted and promoted the idea that Cyprus belonged to the British sphere of influence and that it should never be left to unite with Greece. AKEL followed the directives coming from the Stalinist regime in Moscow and was obviously fixed on the idea that “Cyprus belonged to the British and later American sphere of influence”. It is my opinion that AKEL follows this idea to this day.

The creation of Cypriot nationalism happened during the mid-sixties.

Paraphrasing Huthcinson we could state that: “Bureaucratic nationalism developed in Cyprus since it was the state that imposed its idea on the new born Cyprus state” [2].

The new state was a fusion of different contradicting powers soon to be in a collision course. The state failed to protect the Turkish Cypriot community from the schemes of Turkey and its agents. Turkish nationalists were able to segregate the Turkish Cypriot community from the state and thus the whole of the state fell in the hands of Greek Cypriots. Is there an excuse for not protecting the whole of the Turkish Cypriot community from the schemes of Turkey and its agents that can stand today? Is there an excuse for Makarios regime and its agents for the murders of innocent Turkish Cypriots at that time? Is there an excuse for the role of AKEL as a Pontius Pilate of the era?

The fights between Greek and Turkish Cypriots in 1963 and 1964 led to the segregation of the Turkish Cypriot community in enclaves scattered across the island. At this time the Greek government sent troops to the island and Cyprus was very close to a political unification with Greece. It is at this time that state sponsored Cypro-nationalism emerged.

Makarios, local capitalists, bankers, members of the church and the “left” realized that if the island ever unified with Greece they would become nothing but a historical footnote in a larger state. The only way to prevent this was to create an opposing force. Thus Cypro-nationalism was born. From the very beginning Cypro-nationalism was aggressive and arrogant. It also had the state power on its side.

Cypro-nationalism turned into its more vulgar and dangerous form of Cypro-chauvinism immediately. Cyprus was the center of the world for Cypriot chauvinists, Cypriots were to inherit the island and Greek foreigners should be thrown out. The very essence of Cypro-chauvinism is its racist character. It is at this time that the word “ppoustokalamaras” was invented. The word literally meaning “Greek-faggot” is the equivalent of the word “nigga” targeting the Afro-American community in the USA. Greek people and Greek soldiers in the island were targeted. The same applied to the majority of Greek Cypriots who identified themselves as Greek. This schism within the Greek Cypriot community was the prelude of the violence that followed.

The Cyprus state with its head archbishop Makarios became more and more Cypriot chauvinist in its design and actions. It created all the mechanisms needed to attack and subjugate all other identities in the island to maintain the personal kingdom of its ruler. This is remarkably clear if one considers the name attributed to Makarios. “Ethnarhis” literally means the leader of the nation. The new Cyprus nation turned the whole of the state apparatus against the Greek Cypriot community who started to oppose the monolithic and despotic Makarios regime.

An excellent paradigm of what happened in Cyprus during the 60’s is the paradigm of Erdogan’s Turkey. Makarios acted exactly in the same way as Erdogan does to this day with the majority of the people behind his personified, directly divine rule. The regime considered Turkish Cypriots as lesser beings as Erdogan does with the Kurds today. The regime attacked every voice of opposition as the neo-sultan does in Turkey. The Greek Cypriots who opposed the national chauvinism of the regime were targeted and obliterated. People were abducted, tortured, killed, papers were closed, blown up. A secret state was created following the directives of the regime. This deep state was targeting every voice of opposition with death squads. Elections were a complete mockery.

{In the picture above Takis Evdokas opposing candidate against Makarios in the elections of 1968 and his supporters after an attack with eggs and yoghurt on the only pre-election rally allowed for the opposition by the regime. Takis Evdokas was later jailed for an article against the regime.}

This clash between the Greek Cypriots and the Cypriot chauvinists was the root of all evil things to come. The regime used all of its power to subjugate any opposition. During the same time the Cypro- chauvinists used the mechanisms of the state to form the official historical narrative about the racist fascists who were targeting the lawful regime. At the same time no one really cared about the other communities of the island. Makarios did not blink an eye even when courageous Turkish-Cypriots approached him with a proposal to form armed groups against the nationalists of their own community. When they proposed him to take measures for the safe return of Turkish Cypriots to their abandoned houses he told them that “the policy for the economic suffocation of Turkish Cypriots will continue”. As he told Ibrahim Aziz he preferred to: “cook their[Turkish Cypriots] liver in their own fat” [3].

The state sponsored violence, the murders by the extrajudicial arm of the state, the persecutions, the tortures, the total lack of democracy and respect towards the Greek-Cypriot community led to the creation of EOKA B’ and  eventually to the coup d’ etat of 1974 through the intervention of the Greek military junta.

The Cypro- chauvinists emerged victorious after the Turkish military invasion and dictated the historical context of all the clashes in the island masking their own racist and fascist national chauvinism. Only Greek and Turkish nationalism are to blame. This blame was and still is targeted against the whole of the Greek Cypriot community and is used as a means of promoting the Cypro- chauvinist agenda. To this day no one among the Cypro- chauvinists speaks about the crimes against both communities by the Makarios regime. Their story is that the crimes against Turkish Cypriots were conducted by Greek nationalists. In their official historical narrative the crimes against Greek Cypriot never existed. The tortures, the killings, the abductions, the bombings targeting people in the opposition against Makarios never happened.


The character of Cyrpo-nationalism and Cypro-chauvinism

To this day Cypro-nationalism is promoted as “liberation from oppression” from the oppressing Greek ethnic identity. Most importantly the Cypriot “national consciousness” is still “directed against others” [4] and specifically against the Greek Cypriots and people from Greece.

The following pictures show the aggressiveness of Cypriot chauvinists against Greek Cypriots and their Greek identity.

{The picture above taken by Andis Roditis in 2010. The writing says “Greeks get out”}

Hooligans and Cypriot chauvinism often go hand in hand as the following pictures demonstrate. The fans of Omonoia one of the largest football clubs in the island are directly connected with the pseudo-left party AKEL. In their actions they often demonstrate their disgust towards the Greek identity of opposing clubs. Their messages are racist, sexist and chauvinist. In their proclamations they represent the majority of Cypriot chauvinists. Their behavior is an excellent example of the mentality of Cypriot chauvinism in the island.

{Fuck Greece this is Omonoia, Omonoia being the popular football club affiliated with the pseudo-left party AKEL}

{Fuck your nation: referring to the Greek identity of the opposing club fans}

This aggressiveness turns against anything that reveals a different identity than that of a “Cypriot”. Greek flags are condemned as a sign of nationalism and are often burnt. People who identify themselves with the Greek identity are attacked as nationalists and fascists and enemies of the solution. People who say that they want a solution without Turkish troops and reject the racist bizonal solution are pictured as separationists. In all of their actions Cypriot chauvinists reveal the core of their philosophy. This core is racist, discriminating and fascist.

It is no surprise that Cypro- chauvinists embrace the Nazi idea of genetic predetermination. Genetic research is used to provide the new nation with proof of its existence. The idea of a “Cypriot DNA” is promoted within the population, the academia and the press [5].

Among the Cypriot chauvinists we can even find the effort to create their own language. Thus Cypriot nationalists try to form “a nation that becomes a homogenous linguistic mass” [6]. This is no joke. Cypriot chauvinists promote the Greek Cypriot dialect as a language different than Greek. They even go on to promote a written version of the dialect with the use of Greeklish. All these are promoted as freedom from the Greek nationalism.

Another interesting aspect of Cypro- chauvinism is the effort to write a Cypriot history. It is important for the new nation to have its own history that will distinguish it for the Greek Cypriots. “The use of pre-existent cultures, sometimes inventing, sometimes obliterating” [7] is a familiar concept. Cypriot chauvinists among the Greek Cypriot community derive their ancestral mythology from the Eteo-Cypriots. In their effort we can agnowledge the imperialistic influence of their nationalism.

Cypriot “modern nationalists seeking forever the earlier” [8] tend to present the Eteo-Cypriots as the real ancient inhabitants of Cyprus who were persecuted by the invading Greeks three millennia ago and were forced to be Hellenized. The imperialist efforts of creating an imagined ethnic identity were embraced by the Cypriot chauvinists and became their own. This historic farce has come to haunt us all.


The reason behind the goal of a Bizonal solution

Today the Cypriot chauvinists control the state. Their bureaucratic nationalism is even stronger after the admission of Cyprus in the EU. The nation and the state have become one and the same. And they are both “Cypriot”. The term “national” has come to mean “national Cypriot” during the last decade. Which nation exactly does the “national Council” represent?

The new generation of party officials in AKEL and DISI - the two main political parties of the island – and the new generation of state representatives are mainly and primarily Cypriot chauvinist. That is their main ideology hidden behind any disagreements about “communism” or “neo-liberalism”. They are all seeking for a state of their own without any Greek-ness in it. This brings us to their manic pursue for a bizonal solution for the island who will be predominantly racist. The bizonal solution provides for a two state confederation that will divide the island on the basis of ethnicity and religion with the “north” ruled by Turkish Cypriots and the “south” by Greek Cypriots.

By controlling the official historical narrative and the routes of communications with the Turkish-Cypriot community the Cypriot chauvinists have gained an important moral support.

The Turkish Cypriot community however has embraced Cypro-nationalism in a different way. After the Turkish military invasion in 1974 the Turkish Cypriot community found itself “liberated” and for the first time in its history in a unified geographical area. The occupied area at the north of Cyprus is to this day controlled by the Turkish military and Ankara via a proxy state the TRNC. The Turkish Cypriot community soon found itself a minority in its own homeland. The influx of Turkish settlers is to this day overpowering the Turkish Cypriots in all aspects and functions of the illegitimate state in the north of Cyprus. Turkish Cypriots have embraced their Cypriot identity as a progressive way of distinguishing themselves from the occupying regime, the Turkish military occupation forces and the settlers from Turkey. This Cypro-nationalism is progressive and has no affiliations at all with the Cypro-chauvinism in the south of Cyprus. The Cypriot identity that Turkish Cypriots embrace is not anti-Hellenic or anti-Greek Cypriot. It is a means towards the survival of the community as an individual political entity. Unfortunately this Cypriot-ness of the Turkish Cypriot community is used by the Cypro-chauvinists within the Cypriot state.

The Turkish Cypriots are used as the perfect alibi for their actions. People who did nothing to prevent the misfortunes of the Turkish Cypriots during the 6o’s, parties that never cared about the welfare of any of the communities of the island are now promoting themselves as the “champions of human rights”. In truth they do not care. Turkish Cypriots are just a means towards their ultimate goal.

The Cypriot chauvinists want to finally create their own state within the bizonal “federation”. The dissolution of the Cyprus republic will be their final victory against the Greek Cypriots. The Cypriot chauvinists in the “south” do not care about reunification. They do not care about Turkish Cypriots who do not embrace their ideology. They want their own racist state free of any Greek-ness.

It is only when all these facts are connected under the prism of Cypriot nationalism, its evolution to Cypro- chauvinism and its connections with imperialism and the ruling class that we can get a sense of the real “game” in our island. It is only through this magnifying lens that everything falls into place.

Cypriot- chauvinists embrace imperialism and its money because they are affiliated with imperialism from the very beginning.

Cypriot- chauvinists embrace Turkey’s leader Recep Tayip Erdogan and his policy because that policy was and still is their own.

Cypriot chauvinists want a bizonal racist solution because they embrace racism to their core.

Cypriot chauvinists target the Greek Cypriots simply because they are racist national chauvinists.

To see them for what they really are will save the island of Cyprus from the bloodbaths of the future.

Solon Antartis ~




1.Inventing the Eteocypriots: imperialist archaeology and the manipulation of ethnic identity” in the Journal of Mediterranean Archaeology 11: 3-29. (1998)

2.The original quotation refers to the new-born Greek state.
Hutchinson. J. Smith Nationalism (1994) p.175

Speech by Ibrahim Aziz at the Free United Karpasia organization on the 24th of June 2015.

4. Alter Peter Nationalism (1994) pp. 2-14

5.Cypriot DNA evident in over a dozen populations

6.Kedourie. E. Nationalism (1993) p. 64

7.Gellner Ernest Nations and Nationalism (1993) pp. 48-49

8.Smith Anthony The Ethnic Origins of Nations (1986) p. 16


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