Shots fired at German ambassador’s home in Athens

Source: BBC

Spent bullet casings were found outside the ambassador’s residence
Shots were fired at the German ambassador’s residence in Athens early on Monday, without causing injury.

Bullets were found embedded in the steel gate, Greece’s Kathimerini news website reports.

Ambassador Wolfgang Dold’s residence is in the Greek capital’s Halandri district. The raid took place at around 03:30 local time (01:30 GMT).

It is not clear who the attackers were. Germany’s insistence on budget cuts has caused much resentment in Greece.

At least 60 spent bullet casings were found at the scene of the attack.

ΧΑΜΟΣ ΣΤΟ ΑΙΓΑΙΟ! Αερομαχία Ελλήνων με Τούρκων – Τρόμαξαν οι Τούρκοι χειριστές από το “LOCK”!!!


Νέα κόντρα! Έξαλλος ο Αρναούτογλου με τον Λιάγκα!
Αυτή είναι η πρώτη καλεσμένη της Ελένης Μενεγάκη για το 2014!
Δε θα πιστεύετε ποιος έφαγε δέκα κουραμπιέδες και η… «πρόστυχη» ερώτηση του Γιώργου Λιάγκα!
Το Γενικό Επιτελείο μη μπορώντας να ομολογήσει ότι τα τα μαχητικά τους προχώρησαν σε Υπερπτήση της νήσου Ανθρωποφάγοι όταν καταδιωκόμενα από τα Ελληνικά Μιράζ 2000-5 δεν συνέχισαν την πορεία τους κατά μήκος εντός του FIR αλλά τρομοκρατημένοι απο το “LOCK” των Ελληνικών Μαχητικών βγαίνοντας από το FIR πέταξαν πάνω από το νησί στα 2.600 πόδια!…
Καθ” όλη την διάρκεια της πτήσεως των εντός του FIR Αθηνών τα Ελληνικά Μιράζ είχαν πάρει την ουρά των F-4 ενώ το άλλο ζεύγος των F-16 προσπαθούσε να αποσπαστεί από το κυνηγητό των Ελληνικών Μαχητικών!

Οι νεαροί Τούρκοι χειριστές των F-4 ανέφεραν στη βάση τους ότι αναγκάστηκαν να διακόψουν την πτήση τους γιατί κλειδώθηκαν απο τις Α/Α συστοιχίες Patriot όταν χτύπησε (alert στο πιλοτήριο)

Δεν είναι δυνατόν οι ελληνικές συστοιχίες των Patriot από την απόσταση που είναι να εγκλωβίσουν τους στόχους έστω και για ελάχιστα λεπτά ,αν και τo Ραντάρ AN/MPQ-65 Radar Set Ραντάρ έρευνας , εγκλωβισμού στόχων και καθοδήγησης βλήματος η μέγιστη Εμβέλεια του ειναι τα 170χλμ..μπορούνε να “δούνε τον στόχο “, αλλά δεν είναι δυνατόν το radar εγκλωβισμού να εγκλωβίσει τους στόχους από τέτοια απόσταση !

Τελικά το Γενικό επιτελείο της Τουρκίας υιοθέτησε τον ισχυρισμό των Χειριστών των F-4 αδυνατώντας να δικαιολογήσει τα αδικαιολόγητα…και δεν είναι η πρώτη φορά !

Ancient Messene seeks World Heritage status

It was recently announced that Greece’s ancient Messene will be a candidate for UNESCO’s world heritage site. Ancient Messene has already been included on the nominations list of Greece that will be submitted to UNESCO in the next few days.

Ancient Messene seeks World Heritage status
View of the Odeon at Messene [Credit: ekathimerini]

Ancient Messene is one of the most important archaeological territories in Greece. The city was established by Epaminondas, a Theban general, along with his allies, the Argives on 369 B.C. The city flourished during the Hellenistic and Roman period as the capital of the Messene’s State.

The most important monuments of the archaeological site will be: the Asklepieion, the Temple of Poseidon, the Sanctuary of Demeter and the Dioskouroi, the stadium and gymnasium of Heroon, where sons of noble families were trained, as well as the Theatre of Messene, which was an exceptional building anticipating the theatres and amphitheatres of the Roman period. According to some testimonies, the theatre was not only used for performances but also as a place for political meetings.



Huawei opens major distribution centre at Cosco’s Greek Piraeus port


Huawei opens major distribution centre at Cosco's Greek Piraeus port

CHINESE technology and communication solutions giant Huawei has inaugurated a pilot distribution centre in the Greek Port of Piraeus, Xinhua reports.

The official opening of the distribution centre was held at the premises of Cosco’s subsidiary Piraeus Container Terminal (PCT).

From now on, Huawei, a leading global provider of technology and communications, serving a third of the world’s population in 140 countries, will be distributing its products in Europe through Greece.

“The Huawei distribution centre strengthens Piraeus and Greece’s position on the global transportation map,” said Greek Development and Competitiveness Minister Kostis Hatzidakis.

The investment is regarded as a “confidence vote in Greece by a robust multinational company,” Mr Hatzidakis said.

Shipping Minister Miltiadis Varvitsiotis said that the Greek government wants Pireaus to become the number one port and logistics centre in the Mediterranean.

“Until now our partnership with Cosco has been an example of how serious partners can make a big dreams come true. We are fully committed to exploiting and increasing our cooperation,” he said.

Mr Varvitsiotis said Greece is changing and the ports of Greece are becoming the new gates of European continent and EU market.

China’s ambassador to Greece Du Qiwen as well as Huawei Technologies country manager Zhou Jun and PCT chief executive Fu Chengqiu also attended the ceremony.

Greek Orthodox church nearly done with 10-year effort to paint saints


St. Mark iconography project should be completed in February

St. Mark Greek Orthodox Church

St. Mark Greek Orthodox Church in Boca Raton is wrapping up its project to paint the interior of the building with Biblical iconography. Artist Laurence Manos has been painting the saints for 10 years for the project. (Amy Beth Bennett / December 19, 2013)

At Sunday Mass, children point to the freshly painted ceiling. They crane their necks at the larger-than-life icon of Jesus Christ, offering a blessing with his right hand and holding the gospels in his left, on the colorful sanctuary dome.

This enthusiasm warms the heart of Matt Jenetopoulos, 86, a founding member of St. Mark Greek Orthodox Church. One of the goals of the church’s decade-long iconography project, after all, is to connect children to their faith.

“They respond, each in their own way,” Jenetopoulos said. “It thrills me to see they’re getting the message.”

After 15 years of planning and 10 years of painting, the church’s $2 million endeavor to fill the sanctuary with Byzantine-style portraits of the saints, ranging from John the Baptist to Herman of Alaska, is scheduled to be completed in February. For many of those years, the sanctuary has been filled with scaffolding, paint cloths and unfinished sketches, as an artist decorated the walls, the dome and almost every crevice with vivid portrayals of the Bible’s stories.

“We are following a tradition handed down centuries ago,” said the Rev. Mark Leondis, the church’s pastor for the past two and a half years. “Byzantine iconogaphy has been called ‘windows to heaven.’ It’s a glimpse of heaven on Earth.”

The Greek Orthodox Church has a rich history of painted icons, or depictions of readily recognized faces and symbols of the Bible. The icons have consistent facial expressions, symbols and colors, including gold as a representation of heaven, blue for human beings and red for divinity.

The icons and architecture are similar in all Eastern Orthodox churches, including Russian, Serbian and Polish. Orthodoxy split off from Roman Catholicism in 1054 during the Great Schism, when Pope Leo IX excommunicated the Patriarch of Constantinople because of several disputes, including conflicts over papal supremacy and the Nicene Creed.

Artist Laurence Manos of New Jersey was chosen to paint the St. Mark sanctuary for his skills in the classical Byzantine style and lively use of color, Jenetopoulos said. Manos studied the intricacies of iconography in Greece, where he lived for 15 years, including time at Mount Athos, an Orthodox spiritual center on a peninsula filled with 20 monasteries.

He came back to the United States in 1986 and began painting Greek churches throughout the country, including sanctuaries in Savannah, Ga., Holmdel, N.J., and Detroit.

“This is not artwork; it’s theology in color,” Manos said. “Every day, I learn. I never say I am fully done.”

Pat Sourlis of Boca Raton, chair of the February weekend when the sanctuary will be consecrated, begins to tear up as she describes the painting of the icons.

“It’s very emotional,” said Sourlis, a member of the church’s original parish council in 1980. “When you walk into an Orthodox church anywhere in the world, the one thing we all have in common is the icons. Whether you know how to read or not, it’s all there for you.”

Latin and Greek ‘should be taught in every school’ – report


Latin and Greek GCSEs have lost much of their “intellectual force” and should be replaced by tougher new O-level-style exams, say campaigners.

Students who take the subjects at Oxford receive lessons in basic grammar and syntax because their school education has been so lacking, according to the Parliament Street report. Too often, the report argues, the school syllabus is closer to studying classical civilisation than the language.

“There is (deliberately) no systematic learning of grammar and syntax and emphasis is laid on fast reading of a dramatic continuous story in made-up Latin which gives scope for looking at aspects of ancient life,” it adds. “GCSEs should be replaced by a modern version of the O-level that stretches pupils and does not hamstring them as at present.”

The pamphlet also argues that Latin should be a core part of the curriculum – rather than the preserve of independent and selective state grammar schools, “There is a substantial body of evidence that children who study Latin outperform their peers when it comes to reading, reading comprehension and vocabulary,” pamphlet author, John N Davie, said. Only 13 per cent of state secondary schools in the UK offer Latin.

Ala. man helped keep Greek tradition alive


For more than 40 years, nearly every Greek wedding, funeral and baptism in Birmingham included music chanted by Angelos Petelos.

“He was there at every funeral,” said Toni Nordan, who learned to be a Greek chanter from Petelos. “If there was no one else there, Angelo was there.”

During that same time, nearly every Greek restaurant built in Birmingham was built by Petelos – from Niki’s West to Bright Star and the Fish Market – and he also oversaw the construction of the Colonial Chapel at American Village in Montevallo.

“He was a worker, a doer, more than a talker,” said the Rev. Paul Costopoulos, dean of the Greek Orthodox Cathedral of Holy Trinity-Holy Cross.

“He would work hard at our Greek festival. You could always see him sweating over the barbecue pit, cooking the lamb with his brother Tony.”

Petelos, born on the island of Samos, Greece in 1935, died on Dec. 4. He was 78.

On construction sites, Petelos was known to turn over a five-gallon bucket, sit down, smoke a cigarette, and tell a story about his childhood in Greece, his service in the U.S. Army or his work as a pilot and as Alabama Wing commander for the Civil Air Patrol, a civilian auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force. He often led search and rescue efforts for downed planes.

“He loved flying, the freedom that came from flying,” Costopoulos said. “Angelo enjoyed life. He loved Greek dance. He played a bouzoouki and was in a Greek band. He loved his Greek heritage. He was a repository of Greek culture.”

A few years ago he returned to visit Samos. “He was obviously proud of the island,” Costopoulos said. “He always drove a pickup truck with a license plate that said ‘Samos’ on back of it.”

Petelos left Greece at 12. His father was in the Greek army, fighting the Nazis, was rescued by the British when his ship sank, then joined the U.S. Army. He sent for his wife and three surviving children including Angelos. One of the children had died of malnutrition.

Petelos’ mother had five more children in America. They moved to Birmingham in 1950. When his father died in 1962, Angelos took over Petelos Construction Co. and provided for his younger siblings, ages 9-13.

“As the oldest brother, he assumed the role of patriarch,” Costopoulos said. “He was faithful to family, his church, his country. He was definitely a patriot. Politically, he was an Archie Bunker. The Tea Party would have been proud. He adopted America as his country. He was first and foremost an American, but he was proud of his Greek heritage.”

He liked telling stories and arguing about politics.

“He was rough around the edges, but he had a sweetness about him,” said George Sarris, owner of The Fish Market. “You could argue with him, but you still liked him. I was more liberal than him. We had so many fights. He’d have a cup of coffee and come back.”

Petelos could be a salty character at times.

“He was by no means a saint; he liked partying, he would always smoke,” Costopoulos said.

“I used to joke with him,” Sarris said. “‘You exalt God on Sunday, then come Monday you take the Lord’s name in vain.’ He’d say he’s a sinner; he’s going to do better. That’s like all of us. Not many of us are saints.”

But the Greek Orthodox religious traditions were safe in his hands, and kept alive every Sunday morning. He rarely missed services.

“There are several of us he has taught in the traditional way to be a chanter,” Nordan said. “It was always men who did this. The head chanter before Angelo would not allow women to do it. I’m the third woman he has allowed to become a chanter. You have your head chanter who invites you to join him, then he teaches you these traditional melodies and hymns. He taught each of us how to sing these traditional hymns so we can pass on this legacy. All of the hymns are written in Greek. You are taught the traditional melodies; you have to learn it in Greek.”

While preserving the Greek liturgy, Petelos helped the congregation move more toward singing and chanting in English.

“Angelos was at the forefront of those who said our congregation is not Greek-speaking, so we have to use more English,” Nordan said. “Angelos realized spreading the word of Christ was more important than being traditional about the Greek words.”

Petelos’ youngest brother, Tony Petelos, former Hoover mayor and now Jefferson County manager, gets choked up talking about the last time he saw his brother in church at the chanter’s stand. He was no longer able to sing. He was diagnosed with lung cancer last year. “It’s hard to imagine going to church and looking up and not seeing him there,” Petelos said. “He had a beautiful voice. He lost his voice with cancer this time last year at Christmas.”

Petelos said his brother, who was married to wife Catherine for 52 years, was like a father to him.

“I was the youngest of five born in this country,” Petelos said. “He was a father figure to us. He bought us our first cars. He gave us jobs working construction, cleaning up sites. I was always watching Angelos and his work ethic.”

Despite protests from his carpenter, Angelos would hire many unskilled workers to help put them through college, Petelos said.

“He wanted to give them a chance to make money to continue their education,” he said. “He was a huge influence on young people through the Civil Air Patrol. He was the wing commander from 1993-98. He rebuilt the cadet program. He had a flight academy and 40 kids flew solo in civil airplanes. He had a huge influence on hundreds, if not more than 1,000 kids. He touched so many lives, in so many different ways.”