The Miniotises during the Occupation

Resistance in the Aegean 1941-1944

In the autumn of 2008 I was host to George Miniotis, a distant relative from Chios, who had come to Athens for medical treatment. In the afternoon, while drinking ouzo, he related to us his adventures in the resistance during World War II, when he was member of an organization that collected information in the eastern Aegean and transported refugees from Greece to Turkey by boat.

While all these events were completely unknown to me, they aroused my vivid interest. Indeed, when Captain George mentioned that he had recorded his memoirs from that period, I decided to help him publish them. I transcribed the manuscript on a computer, edited and annotated it, drew maps of their routes and added relevant photos.

The book was ready in 2011, but a series of events, including the financial crisis in Greece, delayed its publication, which was finally carried out in 2018 by Alpha-Pi editions of Chios. This is an important document for anyone interested in the history of that period.


1st Levantine Symposium

In 2009, as part of my research into the organization of Noël Rees, with which the Miniotises cooperated, I discovered the website and contacted its administrator. After learning the subject of my work, he asked me to present the memoirs of Captain Miniotis at the symposium titled «The Levantines: Past, Present and Future», to be held in Izmir in early November 2010 under the auspices of the Izmir Chamber of Commerce ( İZTO).

The topic of my presentation had of course little to do with the Levantines, the only contact point being the Levantine origin of Noël Rees, acting as vice consul and head of the British secret service in Izmir. However, I was impressed by the warm response from the public, consisting mainly of descendants of the Levantines, many of whom spoke Greek, or rather the Smyrniot dialect.