Modern history’s most consequential, yet forgotten, David vs. Goliath story — Greece’s role in the defeat of Adolph Hitler and preservation of freedom and democracy — took a major step into public consciousness last week in Washington, D.C. The Washington Oxi Day Foundation’s first annual celebration, October 27-28, 2011, taught hundreds of high-level national and international policy makers and opinion leaders the Oxi Day story. It did so through the words of Winston Churchill and Franklin Roosevelt and through the vocal advocacy of current day national and international leaders, such as:
Dozens of Washington policy makers and opinion leaders participated in Foundation events including a National WWII Memorial ceremony, Four Seasons Hotel black tie dinner, American University lecture and Tomb of the Unknowns wreath-laying at Arlington National Cemetery. They included:
Hundreds more opinion leaders learned the Oxi Day story as they nominated people for the cash prizes that accompanied the Foundation’s Awards. Jewish community leaders learned of the unique courage of Greek Orthodox hierarchs during the Holocaust through their nominations for the Metropolitan Chrysostomos Award.
Foundation efforts featured Greek Orthodox Archbishop of America, His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios and Foreign Minister of Greece Stavros Lambrinidis as well as Greek Ambassador Vassilis Kaskarelis and Cyprus Ambassador Pavlos Anastasiades. History’s highest ranking Greek-American officials also participated in these events, including: the first US Director of National Intelligence and former Deputy Secretary of State, John Negroponte; former Senator Paul Sarbanes; former US Ambassador to Belgium, Tom Korologos; former USAID Administrator Andrew Natsios; former Assistant Secretary of the Navy and Assistant Secretary of State, Barbara Spyridon Pope; Vice-Chairman of the House Veterans Affairs Committee, Congressman Gus Bilirakis; Congressman John Sarbanes; and Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Hercules Priebus.
Washington Oxi Day Foundation President and founder Andy Manatos and Executive Director Mike Manatos welcomed the involvement in these activities of the national leaders of: the Order of St. Andrew, Leadership 100, AHEPA, AHI, SAE, the Pancretan, Pan-Macedonian, Pancyprian, Cyprus, Pan-Epirotic and Pan-Icarian Associations and Federations of America, PSEKA, American Hellenic Council of California, National Hellenic Society, Next Generation Initiative, Hellenic-American National Council, and Hellenic American Women’s Council, among others.
The Hellenes who refused to allow the Oxi Day story to be forgotten, and made possible these far-reaching Washington Foundation activities, are listed as sponsors on this site.