Hellenic Socialist Patriotic Organisation

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Hellenic Socialist Patriotic Organisation
Ελληνική Σοσιαλιστική Πατριωτική Οργάνωσις
Founder Georgios Vlavianos, Spyros Sterodimas
Founded 1941
Dissolved 1942
Ideology National Socialism
Political position Far-right
Religion Greek Orthodoxy

The ESPO (Greek: Ελληνική Σοσιαλιστική Πατριωτική Οργάνωσις, lit. 'Hellenic Socialist Patriotic Organization')[1][2][3] was a collaborationist, pro-Nazi organization created in the summer of 1941 in German-occupied Greece, under the leadership of Georgios Vlavianos and later Dr. Spyros Sterodimas. Its members were ultra-nationalists, national-socialists and/or fascists aiming to help the Axis occupation forces against Communism and Jewry.

One of their main actions was the ransacking of the synagogue on Melidoni Street, Athens, by the ESPO's youth section.

The bombing[edit]

Dr. Sterodimas, meanwhile, was trying to recruit Greek youth to create a Greek division of the Waffen SS, but was killed together with other 28 members of ESPO (and 48 German soldiers) when the PEAN resistance group blew up the organization's headquarters in central Athens. His death meant the abandonment of these plans, and the effective end of ESPO. During the Day of Atonement services, on September 22, 1942, the Gestapo seized ten prominent Jews[citation needed] in retaliation for this explosion.[4] After the death of Sterodimas, the leadership passed to Aristeides Andronikos, who left to Austria in September 1944 with other collaborators.

Today there is a small monumento to PEAN's leader, Kostas Perrikos at the place.