Central Europe Activ

The 17-year-long dispute between Macedonia and Greece, in which Greece has challenged its new sovereign neighbor over its name, has intensified seven days before the next NATO summit. Macedonia will be invited into the alliance if Greece will not veto the decision. What makes this dispute really damaging is that one party involved is an EU and NATO member state, and the other is a country in a war-torn region of Europe that has a very strong determination to play according to the EU and NATO Western Balkans strategic plans.

This is a settled flag.NATO membership, which forms a military and political alliance between most European countries and the US, has been the first step towards a deeper political integration and EU membership in all Central European countries. (This step was not needed in the case of Malta and Cyprus, which countries have become independent from Britain only a few decades ago). Macedonia was the only major part of the former Yugoslavia, where an early and preemptive NATO presence has stopped civil warfare in the 1990s. Macedonia’s integration into the European economic, political and military structures would be an important step to stabilize the European Union.

Beware, this is not a recognized flag!The diplomatic row over the name of the country looks childish to most readers. Greece prevented Macedonia to enter into the UN under this name when it became independent. It’s UN seat has a name tag with ‘Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia’ although the majority of the United Nations members have recognized it under the name Republic of Macedonia. The are alleged or hidden sovereignity claims over each others territory or population. Macedonia and Greece were both part of the Ottoman Empire, which was not a nation sate and ethnicity did not play a modern role in the making of the polity. The historical region of Macedonia was divided after the Balkan Wars between three forming nation states, Suspected territorial claims in a weather forecast.Serbia, Bulgaria and Greece only 95 years ago. Macedonia eventually became a member state within the Yugoslav federation and started nation building in the second half of the 20th century. This means that (at least) four sovereign states claim to inherit historical Macedonia. The Republic of Macedonia is in an early phase of nation-building with mixed population, who have Serbian, Albanian, Macedonian or other identity. The Greek intervention about the core elements of national identification, name and national symbols, may destabilize a state which is barely the size of Slovenia.

Coloring of shapes reminiscent to country maps.The conflict is reminiscent to the Cyprus and Kosovo conflicts in many ways, and so should be the solution. All players coming from a multi-ethnic premodern Ottoman Empire there are many common elements in the story. Greece successfully put pressure on the 2004 to include Cyprus which does not have a control over its internationally recognized territory, thus importing an ethnic and territorial dispute into the European Union. The current diplomacy around the first round of Western Balkans NATO accession is very similar.

The European Union was established to maintain peace and prosperity in Europe. Now, if you were not persuaded that this conflict has a long-term, strategic importance for the European Union, guess, who is mediating between the two European countries?

(Solution to the puzzle)


Macedonia’s Foreign Minister Antonio Milososki sent the letters to his counterparts in 25 NATO countries, except Greece, on Wednesday, the Associated press agency reported. I am confident that you and your country will not allow an imposed bilateral issue to become an additional criteria and a precondition for Macedonia’s membership of NATO” Milososki wrote. ATO officials say the fact Macedonia’s appeal ignored Athens was ‘immature.’
“It was not wise to bypass an ally,” warned the NATO official. “However, the name dispute should remain a bilateral issue and should be resolved under auspices of the United Nations.”

Source: BalkansInsight

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  1. Hi everyone, i’m from Republic of Macedonia and i’d like to say that this name is macedonian and only macedonian, greeks has their own name called GREECE. Alexander the great was Macedonian and he conquerd the greeks. Do they really know who was ALexander the great? Look at the history and you will find out what Macedonia meens in historical way. Thanks and bye

  2. What a ridiculously misinformed article. It’s almost as though the author based his research on FYROMian nationalist websites. Articles such as these create more confusion and add nothing constructive to the debate.

    FYROM must not have a monopoly on the name of Macedonia. That name also forms an important part of Greek geography, history, culture and identity. As confirmed by their former President Kiro Gligorov, the FYROMians are Slavs who entered the region in the 6th Century and have no connection to the ancient Macedonians or the Greek culture which they championed. The FYROMian claim to the name is based purely on geography and the name should reflect that.

    Every nation has the right to an identity but no nation has the right to usurp the identity of another. As I see it, the Greeks have been more than willing to work with their neighbors on the name issue. They want FYROM to be part of NATO but not at the expense of their own history and culture.

    On a positive note, both sides seem to have friendly relations aside from the name issue. I hope that they can work it out and put this ugly chapter in their respective histories behind them.

  3. I think that the discussion of a United Nations member sovereign state is a form of obstruction. If there are open questions in the field of Greek national security, sovereignty or other respectable cause that should be on the discussion table, and preferably on this side of the Atlantic. I do not think that a geographical name in itself has such a security dimension that the NATO should spend a summit on it.

  4. The dispute may be difficult for us to understand, but emotions run high on both sides and, in recent weeks has given rise to a wave of nationalist hysteria in both Greece and ‘Macedonia’. This is after all the Balkans.

    On the other hand, it is all the more disturbing that the potential stability of this accident prone region should be dependent on a name.

    What’s in a name?

  5. Fyrom should not carry that name, they are bulgars nothing else. More ridiculous is modern Greece. That state have nothing in common with the ancient Greece so both sides are act acting wrong.

  6. Unfortunately there are members in the EU that are far behind adopting the basic values of the new European civilization which surpassingly form the basis of the EU. Unfortunately they are the very same that have adopted the national myth of being the cradle of the European civilization. I wonder if there is something wrong with the way the EU and NATO function or the fundamental values of the union and the military alliance are just a myth. I also wonder why any nation will impose itself to this kind of humiliation only to join clubs of dubious standards. Till there is anything better to be offered, Macedonia should stay independent.

  7. “While Alexander was in stationary camp here, reports arrived from Greece of the insurrection of the Peloponnesians and the Laconians.” [Alexander learns about the revolt of the Greeks against the Macedonians]


    It wasn’t greek over 2500 Years ago till they recieved 51% of it in 1913. So how could it be now? It isnt possible.

    Thank you from Australia

  8. As a mater of fact Alexander and the macadonians of old where Greek

    Alexanders dad phillip competed and won in an equestrian event in the OLYMPICS there fore they must have been HELLENIC

    The royal blood line of Macadon was from Argos in Pelloponiss in southern Greece near Sparta and King Phillip Alixanders dad bosted how there blood line was direct from Achilies him self

    Alexanders mother queen Hellen was fro Eipirus another HELLENIC name as her name represents in its self a foren Queen would not be allowd

    If Alixander was not greek why then did he spread the greek languge writtings culture and religion everywere he conquerd do you not think he would have at least some of his own peoples culture?

    look at history you can not deny Macadon was Hellenic

    People from FYRM are slavs that have been there since 600 AD even your president Kiro Gligorov was honest enough to admit


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