Partisan activity marked in yellow as indicated by Leon Idas
Leon Idas was born in 1925 in Athens, Greece and grew up in an ethnically diverse neighborhood with his father, a textiles merchant, mother, four brothers, and sister. He attended a private school run by the Greek Orthodox Church.
Shortly after the beginning of the German occupation of Greece in 1941, sixteen year-old Leon joined a group of partisans fighting for the liberation of Greece under a socialist banner. At that time, there were three groups of partisans in Greece, socialist, democratic, and loyalist. Leon fought and served as communications specialist with the
partisans for more than two years, setting up
Leon Idas in family portrait, Athens Greece, 1929
wires that wound through the trees in various villages to enable telephone communication.
The partisans lived in and organized armed resistance against the German army from bases in the mountains of Greece, aided by nearby villages, British airdrops of supplies, and their own resourcefulness. They employed mostly ambush and guerrilla tactics against the German army, and the Germans in turn attempted to eliminate the partisans by destroying villages that supported them. During his more than three years with the partisans, Leon suffered hunger, lack of adequate clothing and