781.02/5–1150: Telegram

The Chargé in Greece (Minor) to the Secretary of State


1081. Venizelos called on me at noon today. I read him excerpts from Deptel 838 May 81 and urged on him necessity full cooperation himself and Liberal Party in this critical year of reconstruction. He replied that he is fully behind government and has no intention of overthrowing it. To this I answered that impression prevails here and abroad that without his personal participation there is only half a government without assured stability. Venizelos then took view that it is better for him to be outside government since he cannot work with Papandreou2 who is completely impossible. Government, he said, would be more stable without him for this reason. I replied that since coalition government is essential under present conditions, it would appear that leaders have duty to cooperate with each other and not consider personal preferences. I asked him about his plans and he said he is leaving on 20th and will consider entering government on his return. I replied frankly I did not think this was good enough and hoped he would heed Department’s advice that it is essential for him and Liberals to take full and active role in this government. After this further reiteration of our views he said he would like a little time to think the matter over. Our conversation, which was entirely pleasant ended on this note.

  1. Supra.
  2. George Papandreou, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior.