Petsinari Hari

The summer of 1944. The Greek and Macedonian masses were fighting under the flag EAM-ELAS. They gathered together all of their forces and were grinding chilli on the heads of the Nazis who were suffering great losses on the eastern front. Under the Germans' nose an all-peoples organization was being organized which strengthened their ranks to weed out the occupiers. Tens and hundreds of Macedonian cadres rose up to lead the liberation movement. One of them was Hari Petsinari from Greek Voden. He was a youth who was hard working and outstanding. From 1941 he was organized in the CPG and actively worked to organize patriots he knew into EAM.

Hari became one of the most popular people's fighters in the town and quickly became a people's leader. The more that Kalchev and the other agents of fascist Bulgaria tried to persuade the Macedonians into a fight against their brothers, the Greek people, the more angry the Macedonians became. Few of the armed bands from the region were taken to Voden for security. The Germans and the traitors were tightening the noose more and more around the throats of the people. The members of the organization followed people, arrested them and continued their frightening tortures; they executed people, they disappeared and as the end approached for the occupiers, their repressions got stronger.

Hari was followed but he was saved by the self-defence of Varosh.

The party organizations followed him to the villages where the movement was developing. There, as a leader of the regional national organization he led the ELAS reservists. Hari was not one of those who were afraid. He popped up at the places you did not expect him - even in the villages with armed occupiers. He spoke to the misguided people, he told them to throw down their rifles, to return to their jobs or to join the ranks of ELAS. In many villages he managed to dismantle the Kalchev bands. And Kalchev went wild. He had Hari in his sights. He proposed to the Nazis that a reward of a few million drachmas be given for the elimination of Hari.

One day Hari was arrested in the village of Nish by the occupying forces. The torture started. They demanded that he resign from his work and join the enemy side. "The revolution will not stop with the death of one Hari. The hour of the pay off is close by," was his answer.

The Hitler agents were furious. The torture continued for the whole day. But Hari did not give in. He replied to every bit of torture with his deep faith as a people's fighter in the eventual victory of the people - "Long live EAM! Long live the CPG! Death to fascism!" They pierced him with knives and the blood of the tortured hero dripped out drop by drop. His last words were "Long live the struggle! Death to fascism!"


From: For Sacred National Freedom: Portraits Of Fallen Freedom Fighters

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For Sacred National Freedom: Portraits Of Fallen Freedom Fighters