The civil war in Greece, thanks to Anglo-American aid and the lack of Yugoslav support to the communist guerrillas as a result of the break with Moscow, between the end of 1948 and the autumn of 1949 entered a decisive phase. In October 1949, following the offensive by Marshal A. Papagos who was right of the communist resistance, it could be said to be over, after having brought serious grief and destruction to the country and sharpened the division of minds.
Almost exhausted from a similar crisis, Greece was unable immediately to give itself a political stability that was an expression of the changed conditions of internal politics. The elections of March 5, 1950 did not give rise to a homogeneous majority, but polarized the political forces, on the one hand around Marshal Papagos and his “Hellenic Rally”, essentially right-wing, supported by the United States, on the other around the group. of the liberals of E. Venizelos and N. Plastiras, supported by the Crown and Great Britain. From this second group, after the elections of March 1950 came the series of governments Plastiras-Venizelos (March 1950-October 1952) whose alternation in power, with six formations in two and a half years, he denounced an extremely unstable political situation dominated by the economic chaos and threatened, among other things, by a revival of the Communists despite the fact that in April 1952 an extensive work of pacification had begun. Thus, on November 16, 1952, new political elections came, which saw the triumph of the “Raggruppamento” Papagos. The three years of government of the marshal (d. October 4, 1955) marked the start of the reconstruction of the country, with an active policy of elevation of the humble classes and more tried by the various wars and of renewal of the political class, while in foreign policy there was a lack of indulging in attitudes of extreme nationalism, as in the question of Cyprus (v.). However, the instability of Hellenic political life had no influence, thanks also to the action of King Paul I and for organic needs deriving from the international situation, on the orientations of foreign policy. After having had the right to the Communist uprising, it was natural that Greece – aided conspicuously by the United States and which in 1950 had to send its troops to Korea – on February 15, 1952, joined the Atlantic Alliance, together with Turkey.. The Cyprus question (see) weighed heavily on the Alliance, as well as on the Balkan Pact, concluded with Yugoslavia and Turkey on February 28, 1953 and which became a military alliance on August 3, 1954. This remained purely formal and on paper and not even the solution of the Cypriot dispute (February 1959) was able to make it effectively operative. Above all a staple for the Greece are the bonds of economic and military collaboration with the USA and Great Britain, which began during the civil war and have continued to this day. With Italy, once the residual issues deriving from the peace treaty were removed, relations developed with mutual trust, especially in the economic and cultural field: the Institute of Culture in Athens and the Italian Archaeological School (which led excavations in Gortina), a Greek-Byzantine cultural institute was inaugurated in Venice, as part of the cultural agreement of 11 September 1954.
The worries, indeed the worry of economic problems – aggravated among other things by the earthquake catastrophe in the Volos region (April 1955) – was decisive for the whole Hellenic life, despite the generous aid from the United States (313 million dollars from 1951 to 1955). Papagos’s successor, Constantine Karamanlís (in power with various formations since 6 October 1955) in 1956 dissolved the “Hellenic Rally” and founded the National Radical Union by winning the elections of 19 February 1956. 172 seats out of 300 obtained in the new elections of the March 29, 1958, Karamanlís was confirmed in the government, but – in the meantime – in these elections, the Democratic Union of the Left (EDA: Ènosis Dimokratikìs Aristeràs) emerged in second place with 79 seats, expression of a large part of communist and socialist electorate, unable to converge its votes on the communist party, declared illegal in December 1947 and directed, from beyond the curtain, by Apostolos Grozos. Its program is Greece’s exit from NATO, general amnesty for Communists and legal recognition of the Communist Party. Particularly burning was the defeat of the liberals of Venizelos-Papandreu. The victory of Karamanlís and his large parliamentary base allowed him to launch a balanced plan for the renewal of the country with the solution of the most urgent economic problems, a policy of development of productive investments and balance of the budget.