in a Name - A Rose by Any Other Name, Is It Still A Rose?
Is a rose by any other name still a rose? What
if we started calling the "rose" an "onion"? If you had both next to each
other, could you point to each and call each an onion? Would one be a real
onion and the other a fake onion? Would both smell the same, look the same,
have the same texture, color, and all other qualities? If you asked someone
for an onion what would he give you? Would your sweetheart appreciate the
dozen onions that you sent her for Valentine's Day?
Now, what happens if one area of our world
started calling itself with the same name as a neighboring area? What if this
area also took the identity and history of its neighbors? What if this first
area becomes a country? Can it now decide to call itself with the same name
as its neighbor and the rest of the world
recognizes it so? The Massachusetts Bay Colony consisted of the area of the
northern New England states and also encompassed part of what today is the
Canadian province of Quebec. Throughout the years, many Quebec inhabitants
have migrated from Quebec to the New England states. If Quebec broke away from
Canada and became an independent country, would it be suitable to change its
name to "New England"? Would it bother anyone if this "New England" hoisted a
new flag with New Hampshire's Old Man of the Mountain in the middle of it,
printed new currency picturing Bunker Hill on it, redrew their maps such that
their territory is shown going all the way down to Boston and beyond, and
revised their history books to indicate the colonial New England history as
their own. Maybe we can call this new country "New New England" and we can
rename the Northeastern part of the United States "Old New England". Will that
make it clear to everybody?
We read the above hypothetical situation and think that it is so ridiculous
that it could never happen. But, that is exactly what is happening today
right before our eyes between The FYROM, former Yugoslavia's southern
republic, and Macedonia, one of Greece's northern provinces. Before 1944
the area that later comprised of the former Yugoslavia's southern
republic was not called Macedonia but was called Vardarska Banovina (Province
-of the river- Vardar). It was in 1944 that (Joseph
Broz) Marshal Tito, the Communist dictator
ruling Yugoslavia at that time, created Yugoslavia's southern republic and
called it "Socialist Republic of Macedonia". However, "Macedonia" was already
the name of one of Greece's northern provinces. In ancient times, the land
that Macedonia covered included this northern province of Greece, a small part
of Bulgaria, a small part of Albania, and a small part of the region that Tito
named the Socialist Republic of Macedonia. It is pertinent to note that
Tito’s Socialist Republic of Macedonia consisted of not only a small part of
ancient Macedonia but also a far larger part from Slavic Yugoslavia.
There is no doubt that creating this Republic in the southern region in
Yugoslavia and including "Macedonia" in its name was deliberate with the main
intention of laying claim to the region of ancient Macedonia of the northern
province of Greece. Particularly, what Tito and his Communist allies wanted
was the city of Thessaloniki with its lucrative warm water port.
After 1944 a deliberate and systematic
campaign was initiated for Yugoslavia's southern republic to take over the
history of ancient Macedonia. “Scholars” from the “People’s Republic of
Macedonia” were commissioned to re-write their history books to include
the ancient Macedonian History according to the wishes of the League of
Communists of communist Yugoslavia, accompanied by perverted
maps showing their "Macedonia" going all the way
down to the northern half of Mount Olympus.
Also, “linguists” led by Blagoj Konev, a.k.a. Blaže Koneski, were appointed to
create the alphabet for and refine the "newly discovered" Macedonian language,
which, of course, was made to sound as if it were the “natural development” of
the ancient Macedonian language. Through their control of mass media and
education, the government of “People’s Republic of Macedonia” then
introduced this language and claimed that it is the language that was spoken
by the ancient Macedonians. However,
this language is grammatically nearly
identical to Bulgarian and, due to continuous government interventions, its
vocabulary tends to include more Serbo-Croatian words that have replaced the
Bulgarian words. They clearly overlooked
the unquestionable fact that the inhabitants of ancient Macedonia were Greeks
and spoke the Greek language. Numerous excavations in all of the ancient
Macedonia area have consistently unearthed relics clearly with Greek writings,
and depictions of rulers clearly designated with Greek names.
In September of 1991 this republic declared
independence from Yugoslavia and it named itself "Republic of Macedonia" as a
new independent country. They designed a new flag with the Sun of Vergina at
its center and printed new currency with the White Tower of Thessaloniki,
symbols clearly from the northern province of Greece. Because of these actions
and also because of certain articles in their constitution which implied that
the their country had territorial rights to all of the ancient Macedonian
area, Greece imposed a trade embargo and prevented any trade commerce through
Greece's northern border. Greece reluctantly lifted the trade embargo when The
FYROM redesigned and accepted a new flag, stopped the issuance of the new
currency with the depiction of the White Tower of Thessaloniki, and passed
amended articles to their constitution implying that they have no territorial
rights outside their present boundaries. Greece, however, continued to object
to their use of the name Macedonia. Because of this objection, the United
Nations accepted this nation as a new member with the temporary name of
"The Former Yugoslav Republic Of Macedonia (The FYROM)" (UN Resolutions #817
of April 7 and #845 of June 18 of 1993) until a permanent solution to the name
is found. To this date no solution has been found and the UN deadline of
September 13, 2002 has passed by with the two countries only agreeing to
extend discussions on this matter for one more year.
Currency with the White Tower of
Thessaloniki which was intended for circulation but was withheld because of
objections from Greece. The word in
small print under the depiction of the city is "СОЛУН"
The Vergina Sun
Original 1991 FYROM
Current FYROM Flag
from the Tomb of Philip
excavated in Greece in 1978
The deliberate and systematic campaign of
distortion, stealing and absorption of the history and ethnicity of the
ancient Macedonians is ongoing today with full and untiring strength. Although
officially this country is known as The FYROM, through a vigorous campaign
they have managed to contrive the world to call it Macedonia in common day
usage. The Internet and mass-communication has made it easy for them to do
this and they have used these tools to create a flood of misinformation. One
such example that clearly shows their devious actions is the Web site: http://faq.macedonia.org/.
Hitler is credited with saying "Tell a big enough lie, tell it often enough,
and it becomes the truth". In some way this provides an explanation as to why
the inhabitants of The FYROM are so adamant about keeping the name Macedonia.
Now, fifty-eight years after the start of the campaign of distortion, stealing
and absorption of the GREEK history and ethnicity of the ancient Macedonians,
we find that the inhabitants of The FYROM are mostly the children of 1944 and
those that were born afterwards and who grew up with these untruths. To them
these have become facts. But, must this go on any longer? Isn't it time to set
the record straight?
What's in a Name? - In a name you have
identity, history, ancestry, culture, ethnicity, belonging, cohesiveness,
texture, color, and many other qualities. And, it is in the Macedonian names,
which those in The FYROM now want to claim as their own, where one of the
greatest proofs of the GREEKNESS of Macedonia lies. Here are some of
Macedonian = GREEK
for "the tall one"
Amyntas (father of
Philip) = GREEK for "defender"
Philippos (Philip) =
GREEK for "one who loves the horse"
Alexandros (Alexander) =
GREEK for "the protector of man"
beloved horse with a large head)= GREEK for "ox-like head "
teacher) = GREEK for "the best and perfect one"
Thessaloniki = GREEK
for "victory over the Thessalians"
Countless historians and other scholars have
written extensively about the Greekness of Macedonia. Henry Morgenthau served
in Constantinople as US Ambassador (1913-16), served as Vice President of the
Relief Committee for the Middle East (1919-21). He was appointed by the League
of Nations and served as President of the Greek Refugee Settlement Committee
(1923-28) and is known as a most reliable source of historical facts. In 1929
(please note that this was 15 years before the start of the campaign of
distortion, stealing and absorption of the Greek history and ethnicity of the
ancient Macedonians by Tito’s propagandists) Henry Morgenthau published his
book “I was sent to Athens”, in which he writes:
"Soon after Athens had reached the height of
its glory under Pericles in the Fifth Century, B. C., and had started on its
decline, the rise of Macedon under Philip carried Greek influence into
new regions. The glory of Athens had been based upon sea power, but the
conquests of Macedon were the work of land armies— Philip invented the
invincible phalanx. Upon Philip's death his son, Alexander the Great, set
forth to conquer the whole of the then known world, and as that world in his
day lay to the east, his marches were in that direction. In a few years he had
overrun the fertile plains and opulent cities of Asia Minor, Syria,
Mesopotamia, and Persia, and had carried his conquests to the gates of Delhi.
In all the cities in the intervening countries he left large garrisons of
Greek soldiers. In many of these countries he founded flourishing new
cities. In every place his soldiers were followed by large colonies of
Greek civilians. The result was that the whole of western Asia, and of
what we call the Near East, including Asia Minor Egypt, Palestine, Syria,
Babylonia, Mesopotamia, Persia, and northwestern India, was saturated with the
Greek influence and with Greek colonies."
"The imagination of these conquered peoples
was dazzled by the introduction of Greek art, literature, philosophy,
and public works. Though the successors of Alexander were unable to maintain
the political control of the lands he conquered, and though successive waves
of Roman, Arabian, and Tartar conquests swept over these lands in succeeding
centuries, none of the later conquerors has been able wholly to eradicate
the influence of Greek culture, nor to exterminate that element of population
which was of Greek blood."
"….The Greek War of Independence, which came
to a successful conclusion in 1832, affected less than one half of the Greeks
in the Turkish Empire. It did not bring freedom to the Greeks of
Macedonia and Thrace, of Crete and the Aegean Islands, nor to the more than
two million Greeks in Asia Minor and Constantinople."
If the entire region of The FYROM were from
ancient Macedonia they would have some legitimate claim for The FYROM to be
called Macedonia. But it is not. Over 90% of the ancient
Macedonian area is outside of The FYROM's borders and less than 1/5 of
its own land within its borders is from the ancient Macedonian area. The
FYROM is clearly mostly a Slavic region.
If a vast majority of the inhabitants in The
FYROM were Greeks, they would have some legitimate claim to have this country
named Macedonia. But they are not. The Greek inhabitants in The FYROM
are a small minority.
So where does their claim for The FYROM to be
called Macedonia in any form comes from? There is no valid reason,
which is based on truth for this country to have any form of a name
that contains "Macedonia" in it.
Presently, internal strife between the various
minorities within The FYROM, has placed the country on the verge of collapse.
Albania (since about 1/4 of The FYROM territory is ethnically Albanian)
and Bulgaria are anxiously waiting on the sidelines for this to
happen to quickly rush in and grab a piece of it. On the other hand,
Greece maintains a position of a staunch supporter for the survival of this
country. Isn't it ironic that The FYROM continues to slap Greece, its one and
only friend of the region, in the face with the "Macedonian Name Issue"?
I would think, though, that changing their
name back to "VARDARSKA" such as "VARDARSKA REPUBLIKA " or "REPUBLIKA
VARDAR" would serve as a unifying force for the various factions within
its borders, would eliminate the name controversy with its neighbors, and
would put them on the road to their proper identity, ethnicity, heritage and
most of all dignity.
assistance from Marcus Templar