OXI – NO, a simple word with a powerful meaning. In our Hellenic history a word that changed the course of Greece during World War II. The date of October 28th is etched in our history, reaffirming our commitment to freedom and democracy.
General Ioannis Metaxas’ strong reply of OXI to Benito Mussolini’s request to allow Italian troops into Greece demonstrated Greece’s determination to remain a free and neutral sovereign nation. It also motivated the Underground Resistance to double their efforts to keep fighting the Axis Powers. Allied nations commended Greece for standing firm.
Although Italian troops eventually invaded Greece allowing the German troops to enter the country, our Hellenic countrymen fought bravely and eventually regained control of Greece, pushing troops into Albania. It was a glorious victory, reminding the world that the cradle of democracy will never again be occupied or ruled by another foreign entity.
So memorable in history is OXI Day that it inspired such movies as the Guns of Navorone and Captain Corelli’s Mandolin. Greece played a pivotal role in World War II by showing the world an indomitable spirit, courage and to be freedom’s staunchest, most ardent defender. We commemorate this act of courage and draw inspiration that no matter what befalls Greece, Greece will emerge victorious.