Foreign News: While the Cat's Away

Nobody was looking. Premier Nicholas Plastiras was touring Macedonia. Vice Premier George Papandreou and Economic Coordination Minister Emmanuel Tsouderos were in Washington for economic negotiations. The new U.S. ambassador, John E. Peurifoy, had not yet arrived in Athens. To Sophocles Venizelos, one of Greece's more ambitious politicos, it looked like the perfect moment to make a grab for power.

Venizelos had been disgruntled ever since U.S. Ambassador Henry Grady intervened squarely in Greek politics last March, and gave a thumbsdown on a pro-royalist government headed by Liberal Venizelos. Instead, Greece got a coalition government under Middle-of-the-Roader Plastiras, who has been accused of...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!