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Languages: English
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British Foreign Office efforts during World War II to ensure the peaceful restoration of the King and his Government-in-Exile after Greece was liberated were frustrated by the King's refusal, with Churchill's support, to submit himself to a plebiscite. The United States refused to become involved (except for an unwarranted interference by Roosevelt) and generally disapproved of British policies. The return of the Government-in-Exile to Greece without a firm commitment by the King concerning his future resulted in a Communist-led revolt which was ended only by British military intervention and by Churchill finally forcing the King to accept a regency and the plebisicite. In post-war Greece, Britain continued to use her influence and support in an effort to establish stability in the face of serious economic difficulties and a right-wing reaction to the Communists, which led to a new civil war. Britain's own financial difficulties made it impossible to solve the economic problems or to bring order to political chaos. In autumn 1946, the United States perceived in the Greek situation a strategic threat to its interests, but its capacity to assist Greece was severely limited by a hostile Congress and neo-isolationism. In early 1947, Britain's financial situation and its doubts as to the strategic value of Greece resulted in a sudden decision to abandon all aid. The American administration was forced to resort to an idealogical crusade in order to obtain the funds necessary to prevent the fall of the Greek Government and a probable Communist-led victory in the new civil war. The proclamation of the American policy was the initial action of the Cold War, and a direct result of the policies which the British and Americans had been pursuing towards Greece since 1943.
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