[Insert derogatory name here]. You’d be immediately, and rightfully, condemned for being racist and spreading hatred. But not if you insert the latest derogatory name for my ethnic group. Actually, you’ll be congratulated for helping to “solve a diplomatic dispute” by spreading hatred against us.
Yeah. That’s right.
I’ve heard them all. I’ve been called a ___, a ___, and a ___ (and so much more). But there’s no condemnation. There is intolerance though, towards us, for being offended and for standing up against hatred.
And it’s all because one of our oppressors managed to convince the most powerful countries in the world to side with them in their claim that our existence is a “diplomatic dispute” that needs to be “solved”.
The “solution”, executed by our oppressors, began with mass murder and expulsion. Now it’s forced assimilation, persecution, and the systemic suppression of our name, ethnic identity and human rights.
But shouldn't the oppressed, not the oppressors, be the ones to get support?
Of course. But our biggest oppressor has the distinct advantage of being inexplicably romanticized by the West, so whatever they say, goes.
You’ve been wondering what ethnicity I am. And I’m wondering if you’ll take action (or even care) to defend us. I’ll tell you. But do something for me. Condemn hatred, even though my ethnic group is not high-profile.
I’m Macedonian. Our biggest oppressor, Greece, has been so romanticized by the West, that it literally gets away with murder.
It happened with Macedonians, my family included, as they were attacked, terrorized, bombed (with US and UK support) and killed — for being Macedonian. Why would the US and UK drop bombs (yes, really) on innocent civilians? To prop up Greece’s ruling fascists. (Another, yes, really). The Western support of Greece’s terrorist campaigns against its minorities knows no bounds.
And now we’re seeing the enabling of Greece’s attack on human rights with the atrocious conditions that Syrian refugees have been enduring in Greece. The response from Western Europe? Nothing. They won’t dare condemn Greece. But there is an additional reason — they don’t want Syrian refugees within EU borders.
There is also an additional reason that the US and Western Europe has, again, sided with Greece against Macedonia — to ensure that their imperialism and influence grows throughout the region. Greece vowed to veto Macedonia’s NATO and EU membership bids (Macedonia doesn’t need NATO and EU membership, but that’s another story) unless Macedonia changed its name, identity and history, so the West intervened and supported the entity that it created in 1830.
Dr. George Nakratzas explains the creation of Greece and its unrealistic claim to the ancient history of the region,“It was concocted in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries to serve as an ideological arsenal in the efforts to create a modern Greek nation in view of the impending collapse of the feudal, theocratic Ottoman Empire.”
Dr. Alexander Zaharopoulos describes his experience,“In retrospect it is clear to me that my 12 years of Greek schooling, mainly in the 1970s, conspired to instill in me precisely one attitude: an almost unshakable belief in the purity and unity of the Greek people, language and culture.”He continues,“Belief in the continuity of Greece against all odds was enabled also by the method of withholding information and sealing off interpretive paths. We had, as children, neither the capacity nor the inclination to explore disunities and ‘impurities’”
False claims to ancient history could have been ignored, but not when they lead to chilling, Nazi-like claims of "cultural purity and superiority", while diminishing other ethnic groups and pursuing their demise. Dangerously racist policies must be universally and unequivocally condemned. Instead, they were American and European-enabled, which led to Greece becoming the first country since Germany to elect Nazis (21 of them, in fact) to parliament in 2012.
No matter the ludicrous claims by Greece, it will get Western support. Case in point, after Macedonia was partitioned in 1913 among Serbia (now the independent Republic of Macedonia), Greece, Bulgaria and, later, Albania, Greece spent generations denying the existence of Macedonia and vehemently and violently suppressing any use of the “M” word. But, in 1988, Greece suddenly began claiming Macedonia’s name to, admittedly, deny the existence, and persecution, of the large Macedonian minority in Greece and as UN Envoy Robin O’Neil put it, for “Macedonia to vanish from the map”.
So where are Macedonian politicians to defend us? Good question. We’ve been asking the same. But, since the Republic of Macedonia’s independence, we’ve been cursed with corrupt politicians who obey US/EU orders out of fear or for their own personal benefit. No politician, though, in any country, owns their people’s name, identity and history and doesn’t have the right to negotiate it away. But no country, other than Macedonia, has been, or would be, ordered to do so.
Ironically, when dictators in countries like Russia, Saudi Arabia and Belarus commit human rights atrocities, they are condemned by the West. But not in Macedonia, because our dictator, Zoran Zaev, was installed by the West — and encouraged and enabled to commit brutal human rights violations — in order to execute the name change.
In keeping with the theme of “The West”, we’ll now play a Western-style “fill in the blanks”:
- The first name I referred to above is “Skopjan”, which many Greeks call Macedonians in order to negate our ethnic identity. It was even infamously used by a Greek-Canadian politician, Jim Karygiannis, repeatedly, interspersed with his praise of a lecture which glorified the aforementioned bombing of Macedonian civilians. While there was condemnation of his statements by Canadian media and other ethnic groups at the time (we miss those days as now there is no defence of Macedonians), there were no repercussions by Karygiannis’ political party or subsequent political affiliates.
- The second name used is “FYROMian” (also designed to negate Macedonians’ ethnic identity), which is a reference to the ridiculous “Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia” term that the UN had previously imposed on Macedonia, at Greece’s behest, and in complete violation of the UN’s own charter and celebrated Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
- And the third is “North Macedonian”/“North Macedonia” — by far the worst. Why? Because it is used by the world, not just Greece, and was planned, crafted, and imposed on Macedonians to specifically strip us of our name, identity and history. Two recent “agreements” imposed on Macedonia give away everything Macedonian to Greece and Bulgaria, depending on context, and slapped Macedonians with pages upon pages of documents that dictate what we are “permitted” to call ourselves, how to teach our children our own history, and that everything we have always been — Macedonian — now belongs to our oppressors whose goal is our eradication.
Imagine this happening to you. And imagine being told to celebrate your own demise because it “solves a diplomatic dispute”.
So don’t call me anything except Macedonian from Macedonia. And do something more. Defend Macedonians like you would (and should) any other ethnic group. Demand a return of our name, identity and history. Demand a return of our most basic of human rights.
Bill Nicholov, President
Macedonian Human Rights Movement International