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#31 Posted at 2012-09-12 04:33        
     
I'll throw my two cents into this.

1 - It's readily apparent that they (BIS employees) were in the wrong. I'm 99.9% certain they were well aware of the Greek laws regarding photographs of military instillation's on Greek soil. Furthermore, this isn't the first time a official protest via the Greek Government has taken place regarding ArmA III's depiction of Greek military facilities on Lemnos, and this will have a impact regardless of its outcome.

2 - However... I simply cannot fathom why on Gods Green Earth the Greek Government would charge these guys with bloody spying. Taking photographs of an instillation and its antiquated TO&E (equipment) shouldn't be grounds for espionage charges for Christ sake. The Turks already have hi-res sat imagery of that entire island and said military base, its not as if they're unaware of its layout and components.


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#32 Posted at 2012-09-12 04:43        
     
However... I simply cannot fathom why on Gods Green Earth the Greek Government would charge these guys with bloody spying. Taking photographs of an instillation and its antiquated TO&E (equipment) shouldn't be grounds for espionage charges for Christ sake. The Turks already have hi-res sat imagery of that entire island and said military base, its not as if they're unaware of its layout and components.

Perhaps nothing more than just setting an example?


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#33 Posted at 2012-09-12 04:55        
     
# TyXo : What about making an Avaaz.com petiton ?
Someone could do it, maybe can help these 'spies'.

Good idea actually! I thought about that earlier too but never used any of these petition platforms. It should however be done professional and at one place, not a dozen of platforms.

But yeah, it may help something if enough people sign it.


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#34 Posted at 2012-09-12 05:09        
     
The ArmA community is very close. If we hop around a few arma sites we can get a ton of people to sign it. Also, the ArmA community is very international. That might help in a way, seeing hundreds of people from all aver the world saying "You guys really f***ed up".


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#35 Posted at 2012-09-12 05:18        
     
Yep, just before this goes online we should check with BI what their opinion is about because:

They know more details and their next steps than any of us. And we should prevent doing anything that could cause more damage in the end than it does good. Let's not forget that this is something serious and the poor guys will pay the bill in the end for just taking some landscape photos.


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#36 Posted at 2012-09-12 05:24        
     
Agreed, there are far too many political complications to do anything about it at the moment. We also probably don't know the full story, or all of the details. But at least we've concluded that they're not spies.


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#37 Posted at 2012-09-12 05:28        
     
Here's an email I sent to the Greek embassy here in the US. I laced it with my strong opinions that others may not agree with, but it is what it is.

To the United States Greek Embassy and the Authorities of the Greek nation,

As you may or may not be aware, two men were arrested on the Greek island of Lemnos recently on charges of espionage. The two men in question have been confirmed to be game developers taking reference pictures for an upcoming game that their employing development studio is set to release this year. With this in mind, I must first note how absolutely asinine I think the (over)reaction to the situation is. Considering Greece’s history with over-zealousness concerning it’s authorities and handing out espionage charges, I think it’s fair for the rest of the world to assume that this was a massive overreaction on a scale of epic proportions. And with that out of the way, I come to the point of this letter. I must urge the Greek authorities to take context and true justice into consideration. Release these men before the Greek nation destroys not only their reputation, but their families, their jobs, and ultimately their lives.

Realistically, I’m just another middle class American who may never leave the country again, let alone visit Greece in any sort of physical capacity. But I will say that until this issue arose, Greece was on my “honeymoon” list (almost entirely because of Bohemia Interactive’s screenshots of their fictional land based on the Greek island in question). And despite having a lengthy life ahead of me that may (hopefully) give me plenty of chances to see the world, I now have absolutely no desire to visit Greece whatsoever in fear that even I may be arrested for taking pictures of the things that interest me in life. In a world of failing economies and drastic drops in tourism and international trust, this gross overreaction will only serve to dissuade law abiding people of the world from visiting a place that paints a picture of a possible police state, rather than a “land of peace and creation” that Greek policy makers insist on. Therefor leading others to think that Greece is participating in what can only be explained from an outside perspective as oppressing those from other nationalities, despite all common sense and decency.

Once again, I urge the Greek authorities to release these men and clear them of all charges.

I sincerely hope this email finds it’s way to Greek officials and that my appeal, however unimportant among the grand scheme of things, makes even a tiny difference in helping free these innocent men.

Sincerely,


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#38 Posted at 2012-09-12 05:45        
     
# RyanHunter24 : The ArmA community is very close. If we hop around a few arma sites we can get a ton of people to sign it. Also, the ArmA community is very international. That might help in a way, seeing hundreds of people from all aver the world saying "You guys really f***ed up".

Exactly why I suggest that people contact their respective Embassies. Its not like we're dealing with an overtly hostile regime. Another suggestion also would be finding out, perhaps from some of our Hellenic members, what the most popular media outlets in Greece are and doing a soft contact with them. Of course, before we cross that bridge, we'd obviously need to contact BIS and get their OK. But its not like we're sending 50,000 pounds of Peanuts to CBS as we did here in the US five years ago on behalf of a television show. This needs to be handled a little more delicately and above all else, unified. No "Rogue Warriors" who want to go off and do their own thing.Let those in charge make the call regarding our actions and everyone sticks to those actions and those actions alone.


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#39 Posted at 2012-09-12 06:42        
     
In 2001, 12 plane spotters were arrested in Greece, accused of spying. I'd look there to see potential outcomes.

I like BIS games, but don't feel responsble or feel compelled to support them if they choose to take gaming beyond the realms of fantasy.

As it is I am not overly happy with the idea of having 'possible-real-world' conflicts portrayed in Arma3. Dividing nations in todays world by placing them in a computer game may seem petty, but you don't see many games where the US is the aggressor (..uh... Oh, wait a minute...)

They'll be set free in a week or two, but not before thier backsides have been thoroughly tanned. ;-)

....that's all folks....!

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#40 Posted at 2012-09-12 06:44        
     
I am Greek so I wanted to post what news agencies say here.
First of all it has nothing to do with landscape,vegetation,animals,beaches etc,ofc it's no problem taking photographs of such things,unless you are near a military base.What the news say is that the photos those 2 people had were from military sites.They tried to photograph every possible approach to them.So the logical question is,imagine I travel to USA and go to Langley Air Base and start taking pics around the base,wouldn't I be arrested If I didn't have a permit?Well that exactly happened here,according to news agencies.I see no harm,maybe in some countries things aren't so serious but here in Greece,security is a major factor.
Secondly I hear the argument about Turks having sat images all the time.So what?Yeah they might be using sat to spy us,we might as well,that doesn't mean we have to lessen security and permit everyone taking pics of military sites.If any of you had served in the army he would know that there are places not visible by sats or places "covered" so that sats can't distinguish them,but a person takings pics would.
And lastly I can't understand why so hate?Why do you connect this issue,with Greece's financial problems?And no W0lle EU doesn't pump us with billions,we owe that money with interest,that means that the lenders are making more from us,it's not charity.Don't pretend you know us,in most counties of EU,there isn't a casus belli hanging above their heads,nor they have to serve obligatory 1 year army duty in their country's borders.So yeah I'm ok with security and I prefer people taking pics of army sites to be arrested.That's the logical thing...If they didn't photograph army sites of course they are innocent,but that's not what news say here.


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#41 Posted at 2012-09-12 07:06        
     
# Hakk : I am Greek so I wanted to post what news agencies say here.
First of all it has nothing to do with landscape,vegetation,animals,beaches etc,ofc it's no problem taking photographs of such things,unless you are near a military base.What the news say is that the photos those 2 people had were from military sites.They tried to photograph every possible approach to them.So the logical question is,imagine I travel to USA and go to Langley Air Base and start taking pics around the base,wouldn't I be arrested If I didn't have a permit?Well that exactly happened here,according to news agencies.I see no harm,maybe in some countries things aren't so serious but here in Greece,security is a major factor.
Secondly I hear the argument about Turks having sat images all the time.So what?Yeah they might be using sat to spy us,we might as well,that doesn't mean we have to lessen security and permit everyone taking pics of military sites.If any of you had served in the army he would know that there are places not visible by sats or places "covered" so that sats can't distinguish them,but a person takings pics would.
And lastly I can't understand why so hate?Why do you connect this issue,with Greece's financial problems?And no W0lle EU doesn't pump us with billions,we owe that money with interest,that means that the lenders are making more from us,it's not charity.Don't pretend you know us,in most counties of EU,there isn't a casus belli hanging above their heads,nor they have to serve obligatory 1 year army duty in their country's borders.So yeah I'm ok with security and I prefer people taking pics of army sites to be arrested.That's the logical thing...If they didn't photograph army sites of course they are innocent,but that's not what news say here.

Massive run-on sentence.

1) The Turks could overrun Greece in a matter of days/weeks if they deemed necessary.

2) They have Hi-Resolution Satellite imagery of said island and its military infrastructure. Having some supposed proxy do the same serves no purpose.

3) The Turkish defence budget outweighs that of Greece by billions. If they had the intention to invade, it would've been concluded years or decades ago.

4) This is quite possibly the most xenophobic diatribe I've ever read.

5) Who wants to invade a horribly collapsed economy.

6) The only ones concerned with a Turk invasion of Greece are the Greeks.

Sorry, but while your are absolutely correct where it concerns Greek law, charging these individuals with espionage serves no purpose whatsoever.


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#42 Posted at 2012-09-12 07:24        
     
# Hakk : I am Greek so I wanted to post what news agencies say here.
First of all it has nothing to do with landscape,vegetation,animals,beaches etc,ofc it's no problem taking photographs of such things,unless you are near a military base.What the news say is that the photos those 2 people had were from military sites.They tried to photograph every possible approach to them.

Thanks for registering here just to post your point, it's really appreciated.

But explain me one thing: According to Wikipedia, Lemnos is demilitarized since 1923. Why there are military sites then on this island?

,imagine I travel to USA and go to Langley Air Base and start taking pics around the base,wouldn't I be arrested If I didn't have a permit?Well that exactly happened here,according to news agencies.
Sure but there's one difference: Langley AFP is not located in a demilitarized area. Lemnos is.

I of course am no expert in Aegean dispute, but to me demilitarized means: No military is present on that island, that includes any sort of base or whatever.

So either the news are all wrong and they were arrested for taking photographs of civilian objects - or Greece is violating signed treaties and has military objects on Lemnos. The latter would explain a lot of course, don't you think?


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#43 Posted at 2012-09-12 07:52        
     
# DetCord : Massive run-on sentence.
1) The Turks could overrun Greece in a matter of days/weeks if they deemed necessary.
2) They have Hi-Resolution Satellite imagery of said island and its military infrastructure. Having some supposed proxy do the same serves no purpose.
3) The Turkish defence budget outweighs that of Greece by billions. If they had the intention to invade, it would've been concluded years or decades ago.
A possible Greek-Turkish war isn't our issue here but of course we can discuss about possible outcome of it somewhere else.

4) This is quite possibly the most xenophobic diatribe I've ever read.
Please indulge me why is that?

5) Who wants to invade a horribly collapsed economy.
My master is in Economics so I could analyse for hours why we aren't collapsed but it wouldn't help promote this discussion and we would be off-topic.

6) The only ones concerned with a Turk invasion of Greece are the Greeks.
Sorry, but while your are absolutely correct where it concerns Greek law, charging these individuals with espionage serves no purpose whatsoever.
The law is for everyone,so if the law doesn't permit someone to take pics of military bases that's for everyone,Greeks,EU citizens,Turks,everyone unless the law focuses on specific countries,but as far as I know it doesn't.

# W0lle : Thanks for registering here just to post your point, it's really appreciated.
But explain me one thing: According to Wikipedia, Lemnos is demilitarized since 1923. Why there are military sites then on this island?
You're welcome
First of all wikipedia isn't a tool to inform about serious diplomatic issues.Nevertheless it's a dispute between Greece and Turkey,I could say for example that they don't let us expand our water borders according to law,that's another dispute but doesn't change anything.If you travel to a country,you must abide by that country's law.If for example I would come to your country I wouldn't expect to be treated by Greek law.I could tell you my opinion why Lemnos should stay militarized but I guess the mod will mark it as off-topic.

Sure but there's one difference: Langley AFP is not located in a demilitarized area. Lemnos is.
I of course am no expert in Aegean dispute, but to me demilitarized means: No military is present on that island, that includes any sort of base or whatever.
So either the news are all wrong and they were arrested for taking photographs of civilian objects - or Greece is violating signed treaties and has military objects on Lemnos. The latter would explain a lot of course, don't you think?

So you are saying that you read what wikipedia said,you traveled to Lemnos,saw a military base but because wikipedia says it shouldn't be there,you took pics and thought it wasn't wrong?
Why do I think that the most logical thing would be to go ask an official about permit to do so?
And no you can't take pics because you believe that Greece has violated a treaty,this issue isn't as simple as wikipedia says.Imagine living in S.Korea,would you let your borders demilitarized if N.Korea had them militarized?
About the news,that's what they say if you know it's not true and that their cameras didn't had pics of military bases or surroundings in I'm willing to believe you,but are you 100% positive that they didn't?


PS Don't misunderstand me,I really hope they get released,I'm not saying they are guilty either,everyone is innocent unless proved guilty.That's what the news said ,If the news are right then they were rightfully arrested that's what I'm saying.


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#44 Posted at 2012-09-12 09:00        
     
@all
Although you are all welcome to discuss this issue I urge everyone to respect everyone for his own opinion. You can disagree with his/her opinion but you have to respect it! Failing to do so will get me mad!

Additionally we do not allow any politics on Armaholic. So leave politics out of this thread, no matter if politics are involved!


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#45 Posted at 2012-09-12 09:25        
     
# Hakk : So the logical question is,imagine I travel to USA and go to Langley Air Base and start taking pics around the base,wouldn't I be arrested If I didn't have a permit?Well that exactly happened here,according to news agencies.I see no harm,maybe in some countries things aren't so serious but here in Greece,security is a major factor.

I think you're a little confused about how things work in the rest of the world (specially the US), friend.

If you travel to Langley, you can take whatever pictures you like as long as you have a camera in your hand. It'd be your right to do as you please. You don't need a 'permit' to take pictures around here. If you entered the base, your camera would be confiscated and returned upon exit. If there's anything that they don't want you to see or take pictures of, you do not see it. Period. If there's something sensitive that Greece wants hidden, two traveling tourists shouldn't be able to just derp along into it and start snapping photos. Proper security would be the ideal way to prevent overreactions like this.





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