Greek Neo-Nazis Plot US Expansion
Golden Dawn's overtures not going over so well among ex-pats
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 2, 2013 4:36 AM CDT
Golden Dawn supporters in Thessaloniki celebrate last year's election results.   (AP Photo/Dimitri Messinis)
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(Newser) – Greece's fiercely anti-immigrant Golden Dawn party has a new group it's targeting for membership: emigrants. A rep for the party (which uses a swastika-like logo) says it has decided to create cells "wherever there are Greeks"; it intends to set up offices in Germany, Australia, Canada, and the US to seek recruits among a Greek diaspora estimated to number 7 million, the Guardian reports. The neo-Nazis' biggest push so far has been in the US, home to around 3 million people of Greek heritage, many of whom have retained close ties to their homeland. And while the party has reportedly opened a branch in Germany, Alternet notes that an attempt to open an office in Astoria, New York, didn't go so well.

Greek community leaders in the US have angrily denounced the organization, saying Golden Dawn's beliefs are not welcome in a community that experienced persecution at the hands of the KKK and took part in the civil rights struggle, with spiritual leader Archbishop Iakovos marching alongside Martin Luther King. "These people and their principles will never be accepted in our community. Their beliefs are alien to our beliefs and way of life," says the co-founder of the Hellenic American Leadership Council.