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The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 27 June 2015
DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 27 JUNE 2015 27 OPINION LETTERS Critical times for Greece Supporters of Greece against IMF EU-Troika's economic blackmailing tactics to break down the Greek spirit brought thousands of people out into the streets. It was a great success, attracting masses of people of all nationalities to flood squares and streets right across the capitals of Europe as well as in other countries. Congratulations to the organisers and those people who dared to be counted and do what is right. What happened here in Cyprus? Nothing as far as I am aware. I saw no mass rallies in Nicosia, Limassol or other places to shake the foundations of reasoning; unless they did take place and it's me living in a cloud cuckoo land and saw and heard nothing. Was there a media blackout? Who knows? It was certainly not covered in the mainstream media or even mentioned in any political party agenda or in the plans of our petty-politicians' initiative to show direct support for Greece and get off their behinds and trigger a spontaneous support for the Greek people. What happened to them all? Where were Simmahia Politon, Edek, Deko, Evroko, Dusy, the Greens and others? Not a sound, except for the high-pitched sound of cicadas now ruling Cyprus. But do not despair, we are in good hands; those are the same political parties and the same people that share aspirations to govern this island. Are our minds so controlled by a system that we fail to even show support against injustice and do what is right? If so, Cyprus deserves what it gets because it lost the spirit to stand up against bankers and a self-serving political system that is failing and abusing the basic principle of democracy. Greece will succeed and, if necessary, it will abandon the EU and so much the better, but at least the people will decide and not politicians. It would be hard at the beginning, but Greece would regain its dignity back and be free from the constraints of IMF EU-Troika economic colonisation. As a nation it will again prosper beyond exactions and will prove to all those doomsayers wrong for choosing not to be supplicant to IMF EU-Troika any longer - just like Iceland did. As for Cyprus … well, what can I say! Andreas C Chrysafis Nicosia MP in strife over Macedonian history email Following publication last week of the above story, Neos Kosmos received a copy of this letter to MP Alannah MacTiernan. Dear Hon. Ms MacTiernan, Subject: Your statement on Greek and Balkan history I am writing this letter in opposition to your views and comments you made regarding several aspects of Macedonian history. Please be informed that the disagreement between Greece and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) is not an issue of history. It is an issue of irredentism and expansionism of Skopje at the expense of all its neighbours, but in particular Greece. Your constituents of Skopjan descent live in a euphoric recall and use distorted historical facts as the basis for an eventual claim on the Greek region of Macedonia and especially the city of Thessaloniki. The ancient Macedonians were not Hellenised, as they were already of Greek origin. Since you believe that the Macedonians were Hellenised, I think it is only fair for you to announce to historians of the world what the Macedonians were before they were ‘Hellenised’. As you apparently know what they changed their culture to, you must also acknowledge the origin of their own original culture. In the Battle of Chaeronea, the Macedonians had not defeated ‘the Greeks’ - they had defeated the Athenians, Thebans and their very few allies such as Achaeans, Corinthians, Chalcians, Epidaurians, Megarians and Troezenians. Eight tribes out of 233 are a little short of ‘the Greeks’. By the way, the term is Hellenismus or Hellenistic period, not Macedonian. It was coined by the historian Johann Gustav Droysen in his book Geschichte des Hellenismus (History of Hellenism) and covers the period between 323BC - the death of Alexander the Great - and 31BC - the Battle of Actium. Philip II did not occupy the area of the FYROM. Somehow, you have missed the fact that about one quarter of the FYROM was part of the Dardanians, and that included the regions of Debar, Tetovo, Skopje and Kumanovo. It is the area that the Albanians call Ilirida, at present. Professor Fanula Papazoglu, a member of the Academy of Skopje, wrote in one of her books: "It is often forgotten that ancient Mace- donia occupied only a relatively small part of the Yugoslav Macedonia of today!" It was not Basilios I, but Basilios II of the Macedonian dynasty. It is interesting that this Basilios II fought and eliminated the kingdom of another king, the Bulgarian Tsar Samuil, whom Skopje claims as Macedonian as well. Based on such a thought, should we assume that it was a ‘Macedonian’ civil war that took place in 1014? Such claim would be news to all historians. The Slavic awakening in the south Balkans did not include any Macedonians, since at that time they identified themselves with Bulgarians living in Macedonia. All inhabitants of Macedonia used the term in a geographic context, Misirkov says so. People such as Monk Paisios, Rakovski, Kunchev aka Levski, Delchev (by his own admission) Gruev, Karev, Blagoev et.al were all Bulgarians. Blagoev was the founder of the Bulgarian Social Democratic Labour Party, i.e. Communist Party. He was the instigator of the establishment of the Balkan Federation under communist rule that was supported by Lenin and espoused by Stalin. On January 11, 1934, Stalin fabricated the ‘Macedonian’ ethnicity, i.e. he gave a regional name to a group as its own ethnic. Tito gave land to the FYROM about 10 years later. We do not deny that ethno genesis can occur, after all, Australia and Canada are but a few such examples where nations and ethnicities can be born and multicultural societies can live harmoniously together. Such nations have been built on their own merits and not by usurping others’ history and culture. Australia and Canada, for example, have no need to re-label their English language in order to justify the creation of their nation. For the sake of argument, if we assume that the ancient Macedonians were not Greeks, it does not automatically Email your letter to: email@example.com mean that the Slav inhabitants of the country, which wants to be called Macedonia, have anything to do with the ancient Macedonians. Such a conclusion is a result of a fallacious syllogism and an argument from ignorance. The FYROM, since its independence, never ceased to provoke its neighbours, especially Greece. The dream of its Slav inhabitants is to use distorted historical facts in order to set claims on Greek lands for its own expansionist agenda, and you, Ma'am, are supporting such efforts becoming part of a future problem - the regional instability in the Balkans. Regardless of what your constituents say, Greece is right. Unless your Slav constituents stop branding the red flags with the golden Sun of Vergina and unless they stop brandishing maps of a ‘united’ Macedonia, the FYROM is not going to become a member of the EU or NATO. You have been caught in a web and now you are helping the Skopjan diaspora to use the harpoon with which they would impale the region of Macedonia from Greece. Respectfully, Marcus A. Templar Illinois, USA Dear Ms MacTiernan... The National Presidium of the Australian Hellenic Council (AHC) expresses its deep concern about your recent statements regarding your support for the recognition of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) by the Australian government as Republic of Macedonia. It is quite problematic that your support of such a proposed recognition is based on a unilateral and biased understanding of Greek history. Your uninformed arguments lack support of historical facts, demonstrate prejudice, and it is obvious to the Have Your Say LAST WEEK’S QUESTION: Should Greece accept its creditors’ demands if it means staying in the euro? 38 % YES 62 % NO THIS WEEK’S QUESTION: Do you think Tony Abbott is right in attacking the ABC for allowing Zaky Mallah to express his opinion on Q&A? Yes/No Vote online now. Go to neoskosmos.com Published by Ethnic Publications Pty Ltd (ABN: 13005 255 087) of 169 Burwood Rd, Hawthorn, Victoria 3122. Printed by Rural Press Printing, Ballarat. NEOS KOSMOS Published since 1957 Contacts Reception Phone: (03) 9482 4433 Fax: (03) 9482 2962 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: (03) 9482 4433 Email: email@example.com Web: www.neoskosmos.com Advertising letters Email: firstname.lastname@example.org NEOS KOSMOS - English Publisher: No. 5595 Address: Level 1, 169 Burwood Road, Hawthorn, Victoria 3122 Mail: PO Box 6068 Hawthorn West, Victoria 3122 Subscriptions Phone: (03) 9482 4433 Email: email@example.com Fax: (03) 9482 2962 Letters should not be more than 200 words and they must indicate your full name, address and a day time telephone number for verification. By submitting your letter to us for publication you agree that we may edit the letter for legal, space or other reasons and may, after the publication in the paper, republish it on the internet or in other media. Editor-in-Chief: Sotiris Hatzimanolis Graphic Design: Peter Kelidis Fotis Petsinis Contributors: Dora Kitinas-Gogos Christopher Gogos Journalists: Proof Reader: Angela Costanzo Michael Sweet, Nelly Skoufatoglou, Anastasia Tsirtsakis, Alexandra Manatakis, Theodora Maios reader that you are not well versed on the subject at hand. Whether the ancient Macedonians were Greeks or not is a scholarly question, best settled in scholarly journals. However, the connection of the ancient Macedonians to the Slavic-speaking minority-majority in the FYROM is not a scholarly matter; there is just no connection. To sum it up, your statement is entirely lacking any fundamental elements of research, effectively reducing the Institution of the Australian parliament to the level of a tabloid publication. Dr Eugene Borza, a historian of Classics in his academic paper ‘Macedonia Redux’, in The Eye Expanded: life and the arts in Greco-Roman Antiquity, ed. Frances B. Tichener & Richard F. Moorton, University of California Press, 1999, 255, has stated on the matter: “If the claim is based on ethnicity, it is an issue of different order. Modern Slavs, both Bulgarians and Macedonians [sic], cannot establish a link with antiquity, as the Slavs entered the Balkans centuries after the demise of the ancient Macedonian kingdom. Only the most radical Slavic factions - mostly in the United States, Canada, and Australia - even attempt to establish a connection to antiquity.” Stability in the country or the region cannot be achieved by fuelling the ethnocentric nationalist ideology of the FYROM merely because it serves your present political interests. The FYROM under its present constitutional name and its derivatives based on an historical void, adds to the ethnic tensions in the region, constitutes a strategic security threat to Greece, our friend and ally, and undermines the territorial integrity of Greece. As for the name, one had better check the reasons behind the Treaty of St Germain en Laye (1919) that forced Ger- man Austria to change its name to simply Austria. The history of the Balkan region in these last two centuries proves us right. Your statements are implicitly anti-Hellenic, politically manipulating and motivated, and are teeming with fallacies of an emerging nationalist narrative. Skopje's own historian, the late Fanula Papazoglu (Central Balkan Tribes, 1978, 268) disputed such historical distortions. Skopje is not the heir of the ancient Kingdom of Macedonia and the majority (1.2 million) of its citizens, according to the Yugoslavian Military Encyclopedia of 1974, is of Slavic descent. In this name dispute between Athens and Skopje, you should re-examine the long-term implications of your strong but questionable support to Skopje before it is too late to reverse the path of the Balkans. Humanity owes to the Greeks a huge debt of gratitude for their unmatched contribution to civilisation. Yours in Hellenism, The National Presidium Evan Kakulas National Chair Peter Jasonides Co-Chair Australian Hellenic Council Instability Well done to Mr Jasonides and Dr M. Jones for setting the record, and federal MP Alannah MacTiernan, straight on the Macedonian issue. It also would have been nice to have told her to ask her voters about the meaning of the map of a ‘united Macedonia’ that is visible upon entering this so-called Wollongong church. By thoughtlessly supporting the views of the Yugoslav diaspora, she sponsors regional instability in the Balkans and perhaps she also fosters the basis for a future war. N. Panamevris NSW Please note that the submission of a letter does not guarantee that it will be published. We reserve the right to edit your letter for clarity, grammar, spelling and style. Letters that use inappropriate language will not be published. All letters published will include the author’s name and location. Comments posted on Neos Kosmos’website, facebook and twitter pages can also be included for submission at the editors’ discretion and will be edited accordingly.
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