Alexandros Panagoulis

Alexandros Panagoulis
Αλέξανδρος Παναγούλης
Panagulis.jpg
Panagoulis in Florence (1973), with (to his right) Luigi Tassinari
Member of the Hellenic Parliament
for Athens B
In office
9 December 1974 – 1 May 1976
Personal details
Born (1939-07-02)2 July 1939
Glyfada, Athens, Greece
Died 1 May 1976(1976-05-01) (aged 36)
Athens, Greece
Political party Centre Union
Domestic partner Oriana Fallaci (1973-1976)
Profession politician, poet

Alexandros Panagoulis (Greek: Αλέξανδρος Παναγούλης; 2 July 1939 – 1 May 1976) was a Greek politician and poet. He took an active role in the fight against the Regime of the Colonels (1967–1974) in Greece. He became famous for his attempt to assassinate dictator Georgios Papadopoulos on 13 August 1968, but also for the torture that he was subjected to during his detention. After the restoration of democracy he was elected to the Greek parliament as a member of the Center Union (E. K.).

Biography

Family, childhood and formation

Alexandros Panagoulis was born in the Glyfada neighbourhood of Athens. He was the second son of Vassilios Panagoulis, an officer in the Greek Army, and his wife Athena, and the brother of Georgios Panagoulis, also a Greek Army officer and victim of the Colonels' regime, and Efstathios, who became a politician. His father was from Divri (Lampeia) in Elis (Western Peloponnese) while his mother was from the Ionian island of Lefkada. Panagoulis spent part of his childhood during the Axis Occupation of Greece in the Second World War on this island.

He studied at the National Technical University of Athens in the School of Electrical Engineering.

Politics

From his teenage years, Alexandros Panagoulis was inspired by democratic values. He joined the youth organisation of the Center Union party (E.K.), known as O.N.E.K., under the leadership of Georgios Papandreou. The organisation later became known as Hellenic Democratic Youth (E.DI.N.). After the fall of the Colonels' regime and the restoration of parliamentary rule, Panagoulis became the Secretary-General of E.DI.N., on 3 September 1974.

Resistance to the dictatorship

Alexandros Panagoulis participated actively in the fight against the Regime of the Colonels. He deserted from the Greek military because of his democratic convictions and founded the organization National Resistance. He went into self-exile in Cyprus in order to develop a plan of action. He returned to Greece where, with the help of his collaborators, he organized the 13 August 1968 assassination attempt against Papadopoulos, close to Varkiza. The attempt failed and Panagoulis was arrested.

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