Tensions Mount in Greece as the Trial of Europe’s Most Brazen Neo-Nazi Party Drags On

On September 17, 2013, Greek anti-fascist rapper Pavlos Fyssas went out with his partner and friends to watch a football match. Later that night, two members of Greece’s neo-Nazi Golden Dawn Party got into a verbal altercation with Pavlos in the cafe where Pavlos and his friends were watching the match. The Golden Dawn members called for back up. An organized mob of Golden Dawn supporters soon assembled and isolated Pavlos. One of the hooligans, Giorgios Roupakias, then stabbed Fyssas to death.

Roupakias was arrested at the site of the murder and eventually admitted to the crime, but was released from pre-trial custody in March of 2016 after spending the legal maximum time before legal proceedings in jail. The leader of the Golden Dawn Party has since admitted that Roupakias was a follower of Golden Dawn, and that Golden Dawn was ‘politically responsible’ for the murder, but he denies that Golden Dawn is criminally liable.

Based in part on the murder of Pavlos Fyssas, Greek prosecutors eventually charged various of Golden Dawn’s leaders with criminal offences. However, the Golden Dawn trial has degenerated into an endless exercise in legalistic wrangling.

In this interview conducted at the University of Athens last month, I spoke to Professor Michael Spourladakis about the trial of Europe’s most brazen Neo-Nazi party. Professor Spourladakis is the Dean of the School of Economics and Politics at the University of Athens. He was called as an expert witness at the Golden Dawn trial. As Professor Spourladakis explains, the stakes for Greek democracy are high, and yet Greece’s corporate media are largely ignoring the trial of this vile organization. My interview of Professor Spourladakis can be seen here:

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