To the Editor:
"Right-Wing Extremists' Popularity Rising Rapidly in Greece," (Sept. 30) shone a welcome spotlight on the growing prominence of dangerous far-right extremists in Greece. Yet it missed a significant element of the odious ideology espoused by members of Golden Dawn.
This is not just another xenophobic, right-wing European anti-immigrant group. It is a true neo-Nazi party. Echoing the Nazi doctrine of national purity, Golden Dawn has proposed that "only men and women of Greek descent and consciousness should have full political rights," and recently held a blood drive to collect blood "only for Hellenes," i.e. ethnic Greeks.
Moreover, Golden Dawn's leaders are openly anti-Semitic and Holocaust deniers. The party's general secretary, Nikos Michaloliakos, has suggested there were no gas chambers or crematoria in Auschwitz and that the number of six million Jews murdered in the Holocaust was "an overestimation which was made up." Another Golden Dawn member of the Greek parliament, Artemios Mathaiopoulos, is a former member of a rock band, "Pogrom," whose lyrics routinely promoted anti-Semitism and racism.
Top government officials, including Public Order Minister Nikos Dendias, have vowed that the Greek government will not tolerate extremist groups. Given the hateful ideology and violence of Golden Dawn, the government must now live up to that commitment.
The Anti-Defamation League