The new Syriza PM, Alexis Tsipras, has met with Russian ambassador Andrey Maslov. It was his first meeting with a foreign ambassador after taking office earlier today.

Russia is Greece’s largest trading partner. The value of the relationship was estimated at 9.3 billion euros ($12.5 billion) in 2013 and surpassed trading between Germany and Greece.

Prior to the election, the Greek government complained when Russia responded to US-EU sanctions by imposing counter-sanctions on fruits and vegetables from EU nations.

Greece has been a member of the European Union since 1981.

“The biggest impact from the Russian embargo will be from the indirect fallout as Russia’s ban on EU fruit and vegetables means that large quantities of fresh produce suddenly become available, swamping the market,” Georgios Polyhronakis, spokesman for the Association of Greek Export and Consignment Enterprises for Fruit, Vegetables and Juices, told Bloomberg in August.

Polyhronakis said the counter-sanctions would “send prices falling across Europe, hitting both the volume and value of Greek exports towards other countries.”

In October, the Greek government hinted it would refuse to participate with US-EU sanctions imposed on Russia.

The Greek foreign minister and former PM said that “we are in continuous deliberations in order to have the smallest possible consequences, and if possible no significant impact whatsoever” in order to protect the country’s agricultural production.

According to Bloomberg, the Greek Foreign Ministry established a task force to monitor the exports of Greek products to Russia. The task force, Zero Hedge reported, was comprised of representatives of Greek exporters and government officials and its role was to examine ways to expand markets for Greek fruits and vegetables in response to Russia’s decision to ban most food exports from EU countries.

Syriza weighed in on the issue by stating the sanctions regime presented a major political and economic problem for the country.

It warned that “blind obedience to the Cold War strategies of Brussels and Washington will be disastrous for country’s agriculture.” Syriza also demanded the Greek government lift all sanctions against Russia and explained such measures only served to “fuel an economic and trade war, in which Greece has unfortunately become involved.”

The meeting between PM Alexis Tsipras and the Russian ambassador Andrey Maslov today signals the Greek government will move away from sanctions and what Syriza characterizes as “an economic and trade war” at the behest of the United States and the European Union.

Gladio Response to Syriza Rejection of U.S. and EU Mandates?

In the past, the United States and NATO utilized Operation Gladio terror to overturn gains by leftists and other political factions rejecting neoliberal political and economic directives in Europe.

Gladio “stay-behind” armies, initially designed to resist a Soviet invasion of Western Europe, were assigned to make certain leftist and communist governments did not win elections and gain control of governments in Italy, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, West Germany and Greece.

Often “directed, quite naturally, by former SS officer,” writes Mark Zepezauer, Gladio units “didn’t just wait around for the Russians to come marching in; they assembled huge arms caches (many of which remain unaccounted for), compiled blacklists of leftists and, in France, participated in plots to assassinate President DeGaulle.”

“You had to attack civilians, the people, women, children, innocent people, unknown people far removed from any political game. The reason was quite simple: to force … the public to turn to the state to ask for greater security,” explained the Italian neo-fascist activist Vincenzo Vinciguerra, who is serving a life sentence for the murder of three Carabinieri in 1972.

“This was the essence of Operation Gladio, a decades-long covert campaign of terrorism and deceit directed by the intelligence services of the West — against their own populations. Hundreds of innocent people were killed or maimed in terrorist attacks — on train stations, supermarkets, cafes and offices — which were then blamed on ‘leftist subversives’ or other political opponents,” writes Chris Floyd.

In Greece, the CIA groomed LOK (Lochoi Oreinōn Katadromōn, i.e. “Mountain Raiding Companies”) to prevent leftists from gaining control of the government.

In 1967, LOK Gladio participated in a military coup d’état ahead of a national election that opinion polls showed the liberal Center Union party taking with an overwhelming victory. The coup installed the “Regime of the Colonels” that ruled until 1972.

The military argued that a “communist conspiracy” had infiltrated Greece’s bureaucracy, academia, press, and military and a coup was required to protect the country from communist takeover.

It is thus far uncertain if a refurbished Gladio event will be required to bring Greece back into the globalist neoliberal orbit or if, using more subtle methods of subversion and coercion, that anti-austerity and anti-EU political stance of Syriza can be effectively undermined.

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