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Jim Kershner’s this day in history

Tue., Nov. 12, 2013

From our archives, 100 years ago

An ominous 1913 headline read “Greeks Called Home to Fight – Spokane Colony Will Contribute 200 to Mother Country’s Army.”

The story said Greeks in Spokane “have received a call from their native land to present themselves for military duty within two months.”

The story estimated that at least 200 Spokane Greeks would be returning to Greece to join the army, along with even more Greeks “from the railroad construction camps in the surrounding territory.”

The allied countries of “Servia (Serbia), Montenegro, Greece and Rumania” were anticipating a renewal of hostilities with Turkey and Bulgaria. In other words, long-simmering Balkan disputes were beginning to heat up.

Why was this so ominous?

Because in about seven months, these tense and complicated Balkan disputes would reach a boil when a Serbian nationalist assassinated Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria-Hungary.

It would mark the beginning of World War I.

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

1918: The short-lived Republic of German-Austria was declared.

1942: The World War II naval Battle of Guadalcanal began. The Allies ended up winning a major victory over Japanese forces.

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