35 Pages

Imagining conflict and its causes

Structuring a popular Greek Cypriot response
WithJohn Burke

Although the British authorities were quick to publicly declare a clear ­conscience over the events of 1974, the view that developed in Cyprus was very different. In the immediate aftermath of hostilities, wide sections of the Greek Cypriot media launched an 'inspired' campaign denouncing the 'partitionist' aims of Britain and their NATO allies. There is one trope within the discourses of Greek Cypriot history that is widely embraced across the political spectrum: if the people of Cyprus had historically been left alone, free from the geo-political machinations of external powers, there would never have been a conflict, and the island would never have been divided. For Softonis, none of these international powers maintained any real interest in Cyprus beyond their own strategic designs. If the Cypriots were just left alone, Softonis argued, reunification would occur in a matter of days.