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Effects of World War II on Greece The Greek populace desired to stay out of the war in 1940 They did not have a very strong government At the time it was a monarchal parliament under King Paul II General Ioannis Metaxas was allowed to function as a dictator under the auspices of the king Metaxas was well known as a general and was able to strengthen Greece against the foreign threat that Italy and Germany posed Metaxas became somewhat like Adolf Hitler or Bennito Mussolini He dissolved parliament declared a state of emergency abolished trade unions and political parties made strikes illegal arrested political opponents and censored the press Metaxas was violently anti-communist He exiled and even tortured communist citizens After Metaxas death in 1941 a new leader was sought after to rebuild Greece After the Germans vacated Greece in their slow withdrawal back to Germany Greece became very unstable politically The next leader to help unify and restructure Greece was Georgios Papandreou Papandreou was elected as the Prime Minister and was very republican in his policies The ensuing instability of the country led many to doubt Papandreou and his abilities This eventually led to a civil war This Greek Civil War 1945-1949 was fought mainly by communist leftists against republican rightists Britain was involved in the beginning stages of the Civil War but had to transfer the responsibility to the United States when it became too expensive The United States was very helpful to Greece by giving four hundred million dollars in aid This aid was a result of the Truman Doctrine President Harry Truman designed what is called the Truman Doctrine as a way to thwart communism from spreading The basic idea was to aid countries that were on the verge of switching to communism by giving them enough money to reestablish democracy to the country Greece came close to being taken over by communists in the mid
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