OPINION

January 30, 1954

MILITARY EXPENDITURE: For the first time ever, the question of Greece’s military expenditure was raised at the ministerial meeting of NATO member states in Paris last December by Defense Minister Panayiotis Kanellopoulos and Finance Minster Papayiannis. Both Greek ministers spoke at length on the issue, emphasizing that their government was absolutely opposed to any reduction in the country’s armed forces. At the same time, they explained and produced data, in the form of a memorandum from the finance minister, that the financial burden of Greece’s defense preparations at their current rate of growth was beyond the country’s capabilities and made it very difficult to carry out any long-term program to develop production, a need which the authorities in Washington had conceded during a visit there by the minister for coordination, Mr Spyros Markezinis. Apart from the above statements on the question of defense expenditures, Prime Minister Field Marshal Alexandros Papagos (…) raised the issue during his talks in Paris with the chief of NATO’s forces in Europe, General Gunther.