North Macedonian myths

Abalinx 17 March 2018 Peter Adamis

Image:  The Vergina Sun (Greek Ήλιος της Βεργίνας, also known as the “Star of Vergina”, “Macedonian Star” or “Argead Star”) Source:  Wikipedia

The truth be told by those interested to ensure that those living North of Greece do not win by default the name of “Macedonia” to suit their purposes. It is acknowledged that they have problems in surviving amidst a growing Albanian population, Bulgarian interests and Turkish inroads of influence, but they do have other options to consider and thus avoid upsetting the Southern neighbour, Greece. 

This is a living document which will be reviewed periodically to capture where possible the Former Yugoslav Republic of “Macedonian” myths, fables lies and propaganda and demonstrate to the world the falsification of history. A copy of the article maybe downloaded by clicking on: FYROM MYTHS FABLES LIES AND PROPOGANDA

The main players are those who call themselves Macedonians in the Former Yugoslav Republic of “Macedonian” and those who call themselves Macedonians in Greece.  External players and observers are the European Union, North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, Bulgaria, Russia, Turkey, Albania, Serbia, The United States of America, Great Britain and to a lesser extent nations such as Australia, New Zealand and Canada where Fyromite and Greek diaspora  communities reside.


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Balkan time bomb. Many in past have attempted to create false histories to justify their existence and in each case they have failed miserably. The Balkan states is merely a time bomb waiting to explode by those who are ready to light the fuze and start another Balkan war that only brings misery, death and destruction.  But those holding the fuze may not necessarily be directly involved but exert influence from outside the Balkan region. Those interests may be economic, security, geography, weapon dealers; mercenaries, political as well as influence to meet their own agendas.

On the other side of the coin is the Greek or Hellenic point of view that has steadfastly refused and rightly so to a falsification of ancient Macedonia.  The Greeks have produced overwhelming evidence that boggles the mind and yet for reasons which can best be described as mischievous, poisonous and complete with iniquity, nations, organisations, institutions and certainly individuals wishing to push their own barrow fail to come to grips with the true history of ancient Macedonia.  Apart from the many ruins, relics, scriptures, writings, monuments, images that depict the ancient Macedonians as having Greek origins, there are those who continue the charade that they are descendants of a race that have since disappeared from the face of the earth. 

Some may argue that there are pockets of ancient Macedonians living within the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and if that is to be true, then they are related to the Greeks through their Doric DNA. This fact has been overlooked by many who delve into the history of ancient Macedonia and forget that breakaway families from ancient Macedonia broke away and made their way down through Greece, settling in the Peloponnese and thus over a long period of time integrated with the Minyans, Mycenaean’s and indigenous population to develop into the Spartans of renown. All traces of the ancient Macedonians have threads that go back to the Greeks, even though the Greeks considered their poor cousins in the North as Barbarians.

Greek City States.   Like all other ancient city states at the time, Argos, Athens, Thebes, Orchomenus, Pella, Sparta, Nemea, Corinth, Pylos, Ithaca and other well ancient polis’s competed with one another for supremacy. The most famous of all is the battles between the Spartan and the Athenians who fought for control of Greece during the classical age. The only time Greeks would unite would be against a common enemy like Persia. When King Phillip the father of Alexander the great defeated an alliance of Greeks, the Spartans were not involved and considered the war as another battle between warring states.

King Phillip Aristotle and alexander the Great.           People have conveniently forgotten that King Phillip ensured that his son Alexander the great had a Greek tutor, Aristotle who gave Alexander a thorough understanding of the known Greek world and could well have been responsible for influencing Alexander on his path to glory. Then when Alexander the Great went on his journey to conquer the known world which was then controlled by Persia, he did so to avenge the iniquities of the Persians against the Greeks.  Alexander also took his Greek speaking troops as well as his Macedonian troops that had been trained by his father on his conquests but without his blood relatives, the Spartans who were of Doric stock as his Macedonians.

The Ten Thousand Greeks.                     On the other hand, it was not only the influence of Aristotle, but also of reports that came back from the “Ten Thousand” Greeks that travelled to Persia some many years ago and finally exposed the weaknesses of the Persian Empire. These ten thousand Greek warriors had been hired by Cyrus the Persian Prince to assist him in conquering his rival. Cyrus was a brilliant commander and had the intelligence to hire his Greek mercenaries to assist him in his battles against his rival. 

Unfortunately Cyrus died in battle leaving the Ten Thousand Greek warriors to fend for themselves.  These Ten Thousand Greeks selected suitable generals to lead them out of Persia against very stiff opposition from the indigenous population and the Persians who harried them on their journey through unknown territory. They finally reached the Black Sea after many battles and loss of men. But in doing so they had exposed the weaknesses of Persia.

Xenophon and King Agesilaus.  Those who survived returned back to their original homes and their stories were told and retold until everyone in Greece knew of their travels in an alien country. It is important to note that the story of “The Ten Thousand” was told by Xenophon who was one of the leaders and a close friend of his Spartan friend King Agesilaus.  Xenophon was highly thought of by the Spartans and they made him an honorary Spartan and he was looked after by his Spartan friends. This brings us to Sparta where King Agesilaus was residing and at the time had heard of the Ten Thousand and their perilous journey throughout Persia.

King Agesilaus also instrumental in sending one of his trusted lieutenants called Pausanias to Asia Minor then, under the yoke of the Persians to assist a local satrap.  Pausanias was a great commander but an ambitious one. An ambition that was to cause his downfall with his relationship with King Agesilaus who was also related to him. When King Agesilaus arrived in Asia Minor he soon put Pausanias in place and made ready to conquer Asia Minor.

Spartans in Persia. At the time the Spartans were at their best and the known world would look towards them for leadership in battle. At this point, the relationship between King Agesilaus and Pausanias soured and Pausanias left King Agesilaus side and went north where he settled and made a name for himself. King Agesilaus on the other hand busied himself with conquering Asia Minor and was in the process of doing battle with the local satraps of Persia when he received a summons from the council of the Spartan Gerousia to return back home to defend Sparta against the Athenians. It appeared that the Persians fearing Spartan conquest of the empire, bribed the Athenians with golden darics to attack Sparta and thus take the pressure off the Persians.

Doric connections.                        A stated above regarding Doric relationships, it therefore stands to reason that  if the reader reflects on history and the conquests of Alexander the Great, one must remember that King Agesilaus whose Doric heritage was the same as his distant Doric relation, Alexander the Great. Both were of Doric background. I have digressed on purpose to enable the serious reader to see the correlation between the ancient Macedonians and that of the Dorians living in the Peloponnese.  One could say that King Agesilaus could have been King Agesilaus the Great had he not been summoned back to Sparta and Alexander the Great would have had to follow in his shadow.

What is of interest is the correlation between the Spartans the Macedonians, Athenians, Corinthians, Thebans and many others living in Greece at the time is that they were all considered Greek. This story is but one of many that can be presented as historical evidence based on history of a bygone era. One could surmise that no matter what tribes, families or city states ethnicity, they all fought one another  in a world bound by the same gods, living standards, society, structure, political, military, behaviour, family, culture, dress, culinary, communication, equipment and agricultural systems were all of Greek design and foundation.

A Hellenic Republic (Greek) perspective.      Back to the subject of the name of Macedonia and who has the rights to it, I have added here the official Greek Governments point of view and what they believe. 

 “The issue of the name of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia is not just a dispute over historical facts or symbols. It concerns the conduct of a UN member state, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, which contravenes the fundamental principles of international law and order; specifically, respect for good neighbourly relations, sovereignty and territorial integrity.

The name issue is thus a problem with regional and international dimensions, consisting in the promotion of irredentist and territorial ambitions on the part of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, mainly through the counterfeiting of history and usurpation of Greece’s national, historical and cultural heritage.  The name issue arose in 1991, when the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia seceded from Yugoslavia and declared its independence under the name “Republic of Macedonia”.  Historically, the term “Macedonia”, which is a Greek word, refers to the Kingdom and culture of the ancient Macedonians, who belong to the Hellenic nation and are unquestionably part of Greek historical and cultural heritage.

Geographically, the term “Macedonia” refers to a wider region extending into the current territory of various Balkan countries, with the largest part of the region being in Greece and smaller sections in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Bulgaria and Albania. The core of what was ancient Macedonia lies within contemporary Greek borders, comprises the northern portion of the Greek state, and is called Macedonia. Some 2.5 million Greeks reside in this region today and they and their forebears have considered and called themselves Macedonians through the centuries.

The roots of the name issue go back to the mid-1940s, when, in the aftermath of the Second World War, Commander in Chief Tito separated from Serbia the region that had been known until that time as Vardar Banovina (today’s Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia), giving it the status of a federal unit of the new Socialist Federal Republic of Macedonia, renaming it, initially, the “People’s Republic of Macedonia”, and, later, the “Socialist Republic of Macedonia”. At the same time, he started to cultivate the idea of a separate and discrete “Macedonian nation”.

Tito of course had many reasons for making these moves, the main one being to lay the foundations for future Yugoslavian territorial claims in the wider region of Macedonia and secure an opening on the Aegean. Tito’s intentions in the wider Macedonian region had been confirmed as early as 1944, when he declared publicly that his goal was to reunify “all the sections of Macedonia that were broken up in 1912 and 1913 by the Balkan imperialists.”

A December 1944 State Department dispatch to the U.S. authorities, signed by the US Secretary of State at the time, Stettinius, noted, among other things, that “This [US] Government considers talk of Macedonian “nation”, Macedonian “Fatherland”, or Macedonian “national consciousness” to be unjustified demagoguery representing no ethnic, nor political reality, and sees in its present revival a possible cloak for aggressive intentions against Greece.”   Against this historical background, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia declared its independence in 1991, basing its existence as an independent state on the artificial and spurious notion of the “Macedonian nation”, which was cultivated systematically through the falsification of history and the exploitation of ancient Macedonia purely for reasons of political expediency.

Greece reacted strongly to the theft of its historical and cultural heritage and the treacherous territorial and irredentist intentions of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, and the issue came before the UN Security Council, which, in two resolutions [817(1993) and 845(1993)] recommended that a settlement be found quickly, for the sake of peaceful relations and good neighbourliness in the region. 

In 1993, following a recommendation from the Security Council, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia was accepted, by decision of the General Assembly, into the United Nations under this provisional name, until such time as an agreed solution is reached.  In 1995, Greece and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia concluded an Interim Accord, which imposed a binding “code of conduct”.

Based on the Interim Accord, the two sides began negotiations under the auspices of the UN. These negotiations have continued to this day.   In the time that has elapsed since the signing of the Interim Accord, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia has systematically violated the letter and spirit of the Accord, as well as the obligations deriving from it: 

a. by promoting territorial designs against Greece through the portrayal on maps, in school books, in history books, etc., of Greek territory as being within the territory of a “greater” Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, in violation of articles 2, 3, 4 and 7.1; 

b. by supporting irredentist claims and inciting nationalistic feeling within Greece, in violation of article 6.2; 

c. by using the name “Republic of Macedonia” in international organizations – including the United Nations – that it has joined under the condition that it use the provisional name “Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia”, in violation of the relevant commitments provided for in article 11.1 (even from the podium of the 62nd UN General Assembly, the then-president of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Branko Crvenkovski, stated that “the name of my country is and shall remain the Republic of Macedonia”); 

d. by using symbols – including the Vergina Sun and other symbols that are part of Greece’s historical and cultural heritage – the use of which is prohibited under article 7.2 of the Interim Accord. Other instances of this violation include the renaming Skopje’s airport “Alexander the Great”, the raising of statues of Alexander the Great and Philip II, and naming the section of Corridor X that passes through the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia “Alexander the Macedonian”, construction of the “Porta Macedonia” arch, the surface of which bears carved reliefs depicting scenes from ancient Greek history and the Vergina Sun, as well as express reference to “Aegean Macedonia”, raising of monuments in Katlanovo and Tetovo adorned with the Vergina Sun, raising of monuments in Gevgelija, in the municipality of Gazi Baba, Skopje, with depictions of the Vergina Sun and maps of “Great Macedonia”. 

e. by taking or tolerating provocative actions that incite hostility and fanaticism, including desecration of the Greek flag and substitution of the Nazi swastika for the Christian cross, harassment of Greek businesses, businesspersons and tourists, etc., in violation of article 7.1, irredentist slogans shouted by Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia supporters at international sporting events, actions both provocative and insulting to Greece at the Carnival of Vevčani, which is funded by the Culture Ministry of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

A fundamental principle of every negotiation between states is that the involved parties must negotiate in good faith and a constructive spirit, and exhaust every possibility of reaching a compromise solution.  Greece is firm in its sincere will to achieve a viable solution of the issue of the name of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. The Greek government has proposed a realistic and viable settlement framework that is aimed at the finding of a definitive solution to the issue of the name. Our position is clear: a compound name with a geographical qualifier before the word “Macedonia”, which will be used in relation to everyone (erga omnes), for all uses domestic and international.

In October 2012, the Greek government took a major initiative aimed at imparting momentum to the negotiation process for the resolution of the name issue. The Greek Foreign Minister sent a letter to his Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia counterpart, proposing that the two countries sign a Memorandum of Understanding that would set out the framework and basic parameters for the definitive resolution of the name issue.

Specifically, this letter proposed that in order to provide a fresh impetus to the substance of the negotiations under the auspices of the UN Secretary-General, it is necessary to proceed on the basis of an agreed framework on the basic parameters of a solution which should include an agreement on the fact that any proposal should contain a clear and definitive qualifier regarding the name, which will leave no ambiguities as to the distinction between the territory of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and regions in neighbouring countries, in particular, the region of Macedonia in northern Greece, and that the name agreed upon will be used  by all erga omnes and for all purposes.

The international response to this proposal was positive.  In its response, the side of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, while thanking the Greek side for its proposal, reiterated its longstanding positions, essentially dismissing the Greek proposal.  The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia has so far not responded to Greece’s moves and insists intransigently on its initial position, which it is attempting to impose de facto internationally, with the result that substantial progress has not been made in the 19 years of negotiations under the auspices of the United Nations.  It is clear that through this stance the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia is failing to respect the principle of good neighbourly relations.

Within this framework, at the Bucharest NATO Summit in April 2008, the members of the Alliance decided in a collective and unanimous decision that an accession invitation will be extended to the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia only if the name issue has been resolved in a mutually acceptable manner. This decision has been reaffirmed and reiterated at all subsequent NATO Summits, including those in Strasbourg (2009), Lisbon (2010), and Chicago (2012). The Wales Summit Meeting (2014) did not have an enlargement tone. On 17 November 2008, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia applied to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague against Greece, alleging that Greece raised objection to the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia’s accession to NATO at the Bucharest Summit in 2008. 

In this case, the International Court of Justice in The Hague did not go into the substance of the name dispute, noting that it does not have the relevant jurisdiction, and that the dispute must be resolved within the framework determined by the resolutions of the UN Security Council: through negotiations under the auspices of the UN. The ICJ also called on the two sides to engage in substantial negotiations under the auspices of the UN.

The Ruling does not concern and could not concern the NATO decision-making process or the criteria and requirements the Alliance sets for countries aspiring to NATO membership.  At the June 2008 European Council the EU decided, in a collective and unanimous decision, that the resolution of the name issue in a mutually acceptable manner is a fundamental necessity if further steps are to be taken on the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia’s EU accession course.

In December 2012, the European Council decided, in a collective and unanimous decision, that the opening of EU accession negotiations with the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia hinges on implementation of the necessary reforms, promotion of and respect for good neighbourly relations, and the resolution of the name issue within the framework of the negotiations under the UN. The resolution of the name issue is thus set as a prerequisite for the opening of accession’s negotiations between the EU and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, and as a criterion for the maintaining of good neighbourly relations with Greece.

In December 2013, the European Council, in a collective and unanimous decision, did not accept the European Commission’s recommendation to grant a date for the opening of accession negotiations. The Council decided that it would re-examine this prospect within 2014, based on a new briefing from the Commission on the progress of reforms and the taking of tangible steps by Skopje to promote good neighbourly relations and the finding of a mutually acceptable solution to the issue of the name, within the framework of the negotiations under the auspices of the UN.

Greece supports rather than opposes the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia’s European and Euroatlantic perspective. It was also with Greece’s consent that the visa requirement for citizens of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia was abolished. But the basic objective prerequisite for the continuation and completion of the European and Euroatlantic courses of every candidate country is adoption of and respect in practice for the fundamental principles of the organization they want to join, and particularly the principle of good neighbourly relations, which is the basis for a partnership or alliance between states.

Instead of acknowledging and appreciating Greece’s support for its European and Euroatlantic course, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia usually answers Greece’s gestures of support with fresh provocations and a hardened stance.  A compound name with a geographical qualifier for use in relations to everyone (erga omnes) is the best possible basis for finding an honest, mutually beneficial compromise that will not create winners and losers, but will lay the foundations for the development of a healthy and stable bilateral relationship based on the principle of respect for good neighbourly relations, and will strengthen peace and stability in the wider region.

Greece desires and is pursuing the mutually acceptable, clear and definitive resolution of the name issue – through a solution that will not create tensions in the future – at the soonest possible time.  The Greek government is making every effort towards this direction. Greece remains steadfastly dedicated to the negotiation process under UN special envoy Matthew Nimetz.

Despite the existence of this serious issue, which impacts the relations between the two countries, Greece continues to have a prominent economic presence in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, contributing substantially and significantly to development, job creation, infrastructure construction, etc., in our neighbouring country. 

The resolution of the name issue will remove a major point of friction from the relations between the two countries and will allow for full realization of the great potential for cooperation between the two countries.”   Hellenic Republic Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

In addition to the websites I have included above, please note that there are thousands upon thousands of online data that refutes FYROMITES claim to an ancient Macedonia. I have some great friends here in Australia who are of Slavic background from the nation called FYROM. We joke amongst each other and keep a sensible and civil respect for each other even though we have differences over the region referred to FYROM. 

As a social media friend, Alexander Billinis said in a recent Facebook post, that we share much together, language, traits, Byzantine background, Ottoman oppression, religion amongst other matters. Much of the FYROM economy is owned by Greece.  The lies being distributed will come as a shock to those in FYROM when they realise that at least three generations have been fed utter rubbish and a falsification of their history.  I feel for them as they will be swallowed up by Albania, Bulgaria and Turkey using third parties to achieve their long term aims of returning to the Balkans. Yes it is indeed a black day when a nation steals another nation’s heritage in order to survive.

Conclusion.             In this article I have attempted to demonstrate that the falsification of history is riddled with political crevices that if nations involved do not come to an agreement that is historically and geographically correct and compatible with the needs of its people, I then believe we would be heading towards a conflict that will many nations whose interests for world peace may well decide the fate against then interests of the two nations involved. In addition, I have made it as plain as possible in a language that is not difficult to follow.

Remember, I am merely a student of history and do not possess the qualifications attribute to academics and historians. I leave that to the more learned amongst us.  I accept constructive criticism that will enhance the article based on credible historical sources and not merely knowledge that is not based on facts. The old cliché “It’s all Greek to me” could also be interpreted as:  “they are all Greek to me”

Peter Adamis is a Journalist/Social Media Commentator and writer. He is a retired Australian military serviceman and an Industry organisational & Occupational (OHS) & Training Consultant whose interests are within the parameters of domestic and international political spectrum.  He is an avid blogger and contributes to domestic and international community news media outlets as well as to local and Ethnic News.  He holds a Bachelor   of Adult Learning & Development (Monash), Grad Dip Occupational Health & Safety, (Monash), and Dip. Training & Assessment, Dip Public Administration, and Dip Frontline Management. Website: Contact via Email: [email protected] or via Mobile: 0481 342 79


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