Politics of Forgetting

New Zealand, Greece and Britain at War

Martyn Brown

In World War II New Zealand was heavily involved on the battle lines of the Mediterranean. The experience was eye-opening for the emerging, Empire-loyal nation. A lasting bond was formed with Greece, and the complex, divisive and sometimes violent and surreal events of the time, now fading from memory, are vividly recounted by the author.
Date Published :
July 2020
Publisher :
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Binding : Paperback
ISBN : 9781925984217
Pages : 432
Dimensions : 9 X 6 inches
Stock Status : In stock


New Zealand, with close ties to Britain, was heavily involved in the war against Nazi Germany on the battle lines in Greece, Crete, the Middle East, North Africa and Italy. The experience was eye-opening for the new emerging nation, and a lasting bond between New Zealand and Greece was formed.

Greece was a poor country in turmoil and pain during the 1940s. A military dictatorship was followed by invasion and terrifying occupation by Germany and its allies, starvation, civil war, political unrest and mutiny in its free military armed forces. New Zealand entered this arena and found a bond with a people that it still celebrates to this day. Absent is the complex, divisive and sometimes violent and surreal relationship between the two countries and the inescapable influence of Britain. Their story stretches from the mountains and open country of Greece and Crete to Middle East deserts, autumn-swept plains of Italy, and the blood-splattered streets of post-liberated Athens. Ironically New Zealand has forgotten the unpalatable but also sacrificed something that would have enhanced its own national storytelling about the war.

About The Author

Martyn Brown is an Honorary Research Fellow at the School of Historical and Philosophical Inquiry University of Queensland. He has also held an honorary position at the Stout Research Centre for New Zealand Studies, Victoria University of Wellington. His investigation into the New Zealand–Greek wartime connection has led to academic and popular articles being published in New Zealand, Australia, the USA and Greece. He has also researched, written and co-produced a radio documentary on the mass political uprising of the free Greek military forces in April 1944.

More from this publisher