DOCUMENTING & PRESERVING FOR POSTERITY,
IN AN EVERLASTING MANNER, THE CONTRIBUTION OF
HELLENIC DESCENDANTS TO THE CAUSE OF FREEDOM











































 

GREEK/USOG COMMEMORATION

 
 

In a separate effort the HAVM Foundation will honor the only Greek American fighting group ever assembled in the history of our Country and the only American unit that fought in Greece during WWII the Greek/US Operational Group of the Office of Strategic Services (G/USOG, OSS).

The heroic accomplishments of this Group are so impressive that the Group will serve as a source of pride for Hellenes everywhere. Following is a brief history of the Group beginning with its origin as part of the Greek Battalion.

 

"GREEK AMERICAN OPERATIONAL GROUP"
OFFICE OF STRATEGIC SERVICES
1943 TO 1945
aka Company C, 2671 Special Reconnaissance Battalion
(Separate, Provisional)

 

The GREEK AMERICAN OPERATIONAL GROUP, formed with volunteers from the Greek Battalion, was a small, elite commando group that consisted of Greek born and American born Hellenes who volunteered to specifically fight in Greece during WWII. The men of this group willingly agreed to conduct dangerous, behind enemy lines activities, knowing that 90% of the Group was expected to perish (their Italian counterpart suffered 100% fatalities in the first day of operations). Yet, the danger did not deter these men; for them, there was no greater honor than to serve America and fight on Greek soil to liberate the land of their forebears.

The men of the Operational Group were specially trained in guerrilla warfare, demolitions, weapons, communications, intelligence and pilot rescue. Infiltrating clandestinely into Greece by parachute or amphibious landing, they joined with the Greek Resistance fighters and British Commandos to disrupt and impede the occupational forces. These one-hundred-seventy brave young men demolished bridges, transportation and communication lines, ammunition depots, and vital supplies and materials critical to the German Wermacht, inflicting an inordinate amount of destruction on the one­hundred-fifty-thousand Axis military, which included artillery, tank, air and naval support.

Because of the successes of the Operational Group, the German High Command was forced to commit more troops to Greece than planned. When the German Army was ordered to withdraw, the Operational Group delayed the withdrawal and denied Hitler the use of four divisions for deployment in Italy, Russia and Europe. Without a doubt, the Operational Group contributed heavily to the destruction of the German military.

The members of the Operational Group were heroes in every sense of the word; their actions went above and beyond the normal. Never before or since in the history of America, in any branch of the military, has a Greek American group ever fought as such. This group fought courageously and served America and Greece with honor and distinction. Because of the extensive training the members received and the activities in which they were involved, these men were the forerunners of the US. Army Special Forces (Green Berets).

Through a combination of circumstances, the history of the Operational Group has been shrouded in secrecy and its accomplishments not recognized. By the vary nature of the operation, the Group's existence was classified Top Secret and remained so even after the war when the records of its members were sealed until 1988. The Group's accomplishments are not only a vital part of the annals of WWII, but also of modern Greek history and the_ contribution of Greek Americans to the cause of freedom. It is important that the Group's story be made known and preserved for future generations in both America and Greece.   If this story is not told, an impressive part of our history will be lost forever.

Members of the Operational Group deserve the recognition they have earned and thus far have not received. The members valiantly continued a tradition of courage that has long been part of our Hellenic history. It is up to us to continue another Hellenic tradition, and that is to immortalize our heroes by erecting a lasting tribute in their honor.

 Plans to commemorate the Group are underway. The HAVM Foundation is in the process of obtaining approval and financial support from the Greek Government and Ministry of Defense.
The major source of funding for a memorial will come from the families of the Group members, most of whom are deceased, and donations from interested individuals and organizations.
Those wishing to donate may use the donation portion of the Registration Donation form and specify G/USOG on the form.