Russia and the U.S. have been engaging in a war of words over Greece after American Ambassador to Athens, Geoffrey Pyatt made unfounded claims that Russia wants Greece to be in conflict with Turkey.
However, it was a tweet made yesterday by Pyatt that has left Greek social media users not only confused, but angered.
Pyatt retweeted US military Africa Command that alleges “New evidence of Russian aircraft active in Libyan airspace,” and added his own comment of “More evidence of Russian aircraft active in Libyan airspace as Russia continues to push for a strategic foothold on NATO’s southern flank south of Crete.”
More evidence of Russian aircraft active in Libyan airspace as Russia continues to push for a strategic foothold on NATO's southern flank south of Crete. https://t.co/B6raMyhsLb
— Geoffrey Pyatt (@USAmbPyatt) June 18, 2020
This of course outraged Greek Twitter users as Russia is not a threat to Greece, and by extension NATO’s southern flank close to Crete, but rather it is Turkey who frequently and openly threatens Greece’s sovereignty.
One twitter user reminded Pyatt that it was Turkey who publishes maps that shows the majority of Crete belonging to Turkey.
Turkey claims Crete, except the part of NATO base. Isn't that a threat for Greece already? How are we going to deal with Turkey's aggression? pic.twitter.com/RthUDg5r6K
— Mary_Anne (@MrnRjwski) June 18, 2020
Since November last year, Turkey has been accelerating its claims to Greece’s maritime space. Ankara signed an illegal memorandum with the Muslim Brotherhood Government of National Accords, based in the Libyan capital of Tripoli, to steal Greece’s maritime space between themselves.
The illegal memorandum aims to steal the maritime space of NATO member Greece, but despite that fact, the U.S. and NATO head Jens Stoltenberg still insist on their support for the Turkish-backed Muslim Brotherhood government in Tripoli. Effectively NATO and the US supports the Muslim Brotherhood and Turkey to steal Greek maritime space.
However, NATO members Greece and France, as well as Russia, offer varying degrees of support for the Libyan National Army that is in direct opposition to the Muslim Brotherhood. This shows a clear divide in NATO that became a redundant organisation after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.
While Ankara directly and openly announces that Greek islands, including the majority of Crete, belongs to Turkey, Pyatt as Ambassador to Athens is attempting to frame Russia as a threat to Greece – and Greek Twitter users were not happy about this.
Penny Smirlis responded to Pyatt, saying that “For the Greek people, Greek sovereignty is more important than NATO.”
For the Greek people, Greek sovereignty is more important than NATO
— Penny Smirlis (@PennySmirlis) June 18, 2020
Antigoni suggested that Pyatt belongs in Ankara instead of Athens.
Mr Pyatt although he is an Ambassador in Greece claiming he’s a friend and philhellene says it’s more important that Turkey builds two bases in Libya right across Crete than Russia to stop Turkey’s expanding plans. I think he is in the wrong Embassy… His place is in Ankara…
— Antigoni (@fragoua) June 18, 2020
Dennis Kassavetis pointed out that the US is supporting the Muslim Brotherhood government in Libya who aims to steal Greek maritime space close to Crete.
oh now makes sense..https://t.co/jhwnDk7tfv
— Dennis Kassavetis (@DeKassas) June 18, 2020
Mike Kevrekidis asked about Turkey’s aggression in Libya.
How about the Turkish fighter jets and UAVs over Libya? What about the constant Turkish violations of the UN arms embargo in Libya? Talk to us about them and about what the U.S. is going to do about them!
— Mike Kevrekidis (@Makis_Kevrekidi) June 18, 2020
Jason said “Pyatt you are wrong! Greece’s enemy is Turkey not Russia.”
Pyatt you are wrong! Greece’s enemy is Turkey not Russia.
— jason (@jasontruth007) June 18, 2020
Mike emphasised that to Greeks, the main threat to sovereignty is Turkey.
Mr Ambassador us Greeks are highly alarmed not only by the presence of Turks in our southern flank but their expansionist plans against our rights
I think Turkey is also a major threat for USA interests by I will leave this to you judjing
For Greece Turkey is No1 `Threat
— Mike_Strong (@Strong3Mike) June 18, 2020
These are just some of the tweets against Pyatt’s inaccurate suggestion that Russia is a threat to NATO’s southern flank at Crete.