NEW YORK.- By Apostolis Zoupaniotis
Greek Americans all around the country have a place in their heart for Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney (D., 14TH Dist. NY), co-chair person along with Congressman Michael Bilirakis of the Hellenic Caucus at the House of Representatives. Since she was elected for the first time in Congress in 1992 (replacing an other philhellene, the Republican Bill Green) she is so patiently involved with Greek American concerns on the national issues o Hellenism, that she was named Bouboulina (the famous heroine of the Greek Revolution) by Archbishop Iacovos.
Representing a good part of the Greek American community of Astoria and Manhattan, Carolyn Maloney never missed a battle. She was always by our side in the struggle for Cyprus, Macedonia, the protection of human rights of the Greek Minority in Northern Epirus, the Imia crisis, the protection of the Ecumenical Patriarchate. She has visited Greece and Cyprus many times promoting the relations and the better understanding of the two countries with the United States.
Carolyn Maloney is facing a democratic primary on September 14 and that has signaled the mobilization of her Greek American friends, to help her campaign both financially and with votes. Last Friday, a fundraiser was organized at the residence of Fotis Fiotodimtrakis, in Whitestone. Peter Rodamis co-sponsored the event that attracted more than 50 people, Cretans and friends and raised more than $ 12,000. George Malandrakis introduced the congresswoman to the audience.
Carolyn Maloney congratulated the Greek Americans for a successful year, starting with the most latest victory of the Greek soccer team against France, in the EURO 2004.
“Cyprus has acceded to the EU and Greece is organizing this Summer the Olympic Games, that I am confident they will be more successful and safe. The World needs more that ever the Olympic ideals”, she said, expressing hope that maybe the Olympic Games will inspire the states for peace and justice in Cyprus and around the globe.
She has also briefed the Greek Americans on the efforts of the Hellenic Caucus to collect signatures on a letter addressed to President Bush, Secretary of State Collin Powel and UN Secretary General Kofi Anan, asking them not to penalize the people of Cyprus, of rejecting Annan Plan at the April 24 referendum.
Carolyn Maloney criticized President Bush policies in both domestic and foreign affairs.
“We used to have many friends”, she stated. Ms Maloney said she is hopeful the Democratic candidate John Kerry will defeat George w. Bush in November.
“Best days are ahead of us, not only in Cyprus, but also in the United States. We will all work together to overcome the danger of terrorism”.
Finally she praised the Greek American community for its contributions to the American society and its steadfast support for her. She called on the Greek Americans to help her collecting signatures, in order to be in the ballot and promised to be on their side on every issue.
Charles Marangoudakis praised Maloney for all she does for the Greek Americans and especially her many initiatives on Cyprus.
“The Hellenic Caucus with 108 members is a very big accomplishment”, he added.
Fotis Fiotodimitrakis told GreekNews he was happy for the turnout.
“Our community is grateful for Carolyn Maloney and what she has done for the Greek Americans. We must stay by her side in this election”, he said.
Fiotodimitrakis encouraged the Greek Americans to participate in the political process and the social life in this country.
“Our future and the future of our children is here. That’s why we should emphasize in working out the problems we face here, strengthening further our presence in the United States.
Carolyn Maloney accepted an invitation by her Cretan friends to visit the island during the summer of 2005.