Macedonia News : First Issue of “The Pseudomacedonism Weekly Report” is Online
- Analysis of Initial 100 Days of Nikola Gruevski’s Goverment in FYROM.
- Archaeologizing the Future as FYROMian Official Policy.
- Summary of Organized Activities of Bulgarian and Serbian Communities.
- The State of Affairs Within Opposition Press.
Analysis of Initial 100 Days of VMRO-DPMNE-Led Goverment in FYROM
Nikola Gruevski, the Prime Minister of FYROM and President of VMRO-DPMNE political party, formed a Goverment after election victory in 2011, at 5 of June. Reviewing its policies and extension of its cummulative works (since the current goverment has political continuity with the one elected in 2008) after 100 days reveals these results:
A) The goverment intensifies highly-publicized (in form of lavish, mostly cinematic-style raporting and issuing texts of praise disproportionate to the value of achieved motion) actions of public-spending based structural reforms, infrastructural achievments and preserved trends of political populism, antiquzation (including undefined politics of diplomatic animbguity) and EU-noted lack of judicial, system reforms in public administration as well as freedom of media1.
B) The opposition block, led by SDSM2, although it has more MP, even taking into consideration the reformed election laws, that secure 3 more to the already existing 120 places in the Parliement (Sobranie) of FYROM, had on multiple occassion announced measures of all-front no-violence oppoisition to the Goverment, including a speech by President of SDSM, Branko Crvenkovski, that these measures shall start from 5th of November 2011. Nevertheless, appart fro bitter retorics exchanged within the parliamentary session, occassional leaving of the hall in toto by the MP’s of the opposition as well as common press conferences of criticism of Goverment, usually held by senior SDSM officials pointed at very concrete variety of VMRO-DPMNE and DUI Goverment, the conflict remains characterized by bulletin-style retorics and counter-retorics, without any major opposition mass-movement emergent.
The November 2011 restructuring of SDSM party with senior members, most of them prominent during 1990’s and criticism of SDSM because of lack of direct election of party leader by one of it prominent members, former PM Prof. Vlado Bučkovski was ridiculed as regressive by VMRO-DPMNE official statement3. The other parties that are part of the coallition have no expressed publicly any substantial criticism of overall policies of current Goverment of FYROM.
C) Within the discourse of the VMRO-DPMNE, its coallition partner parties, a number of NGO’s as well as original contributions by pro-goverment journalist, Euroscepticism has been oppened as a theme. In the concrete form of challenging public opinion about Euro-Atlantic integrations, which was rallied by almost all major political parties since FYROM independence from Yugoslavia, allusion to the possibility of rejection or freezing of EU-joining process in favor of variety of new foreign political and economic alliances, to which FYROM should proceed, various combinations (BRIK, Non-Aligned Movement, direct high-intensity bilateral relation with USA and also with Republic of Turkey etc.) are much more commonly hinted and debated about4.
Regardless of that, the government of FYROM continues to declare pursuit of Euro-Atlantic integration as declared politics, an indirect evidence about which is to be found in continuous low-level legal and structuring reforms demanded by EU ascension protocol. However, high-ranking officials have stated that plenty of factors, primary of which is allegedly unjust political concession to Hellenic Republic in the name dispute between both countries, collateral with exponential increase of mostly quasi-analytical content that is in defense of Euro-skepticism on variety of economy-based reasoning, with or without synergistic expose on the problematic of the self-styled Pseudomacedonian identity.
These vectors of idea dissemination well add to subculture of skepticism towards change augmented in particular with urban mythology of Europe’s unjust decision and behavior towards the “Macedonian issue” from mid-19th century to the treaty of Bucharest in 1913 and onwards.
The SDSM proclaims this policy of partial ambiguity, combined with common statements by senior VMRO-DPMNE politicians with regards of “lines which the government shall not cross in negotiations with Greece (preservation of the constitutional name and pretension of exclusive “Macedonian” nominal and substantial ethnic name and language)” as covert will to avoid the implication of hard-line EU criteria on corruption, which allegedly do not suit interest of VMRO-DPMNE protected elite of oligarchs, most of them having amassed wealth & privileges in the loosely by police, financial control and judiciary controlled property, finance and other sectors (the colloquial term used by some opposition figures for the VMRO-DPMNE top-level echelon, in this context, is “The Family”[“Familijata”]).
Ali Ahmeti, President of the only ethnic Albanian party represented in the government alluded several times that among Albanian population the view is that all problems making obstacle to Euro-Atlantic integration of FYROM should be solved and that he cannot guarantee that radical Albanian militants won’t start, regardless of his will and DUI, self-organization should situation continues into a stalemate5. Menduh Thaci, politician from ethnic Albanian party DPA stressed that the name issue is the problems of the “Macedonians” themselves. The review of FYROMian press doesn’t indicates any observed attempts of political or military self-organization of Albanians in FYROM as of now.
the old-new Nikola Gruevski government of FYROM continued the old, pro-government media facilitated politics which in the realm of internal social-economical and cultural synergy means increase in antiquziation propaganda, representation of cosmetic micro-structural reforms and a number of public infrastructure project as well as certain amount of other economical policies as they were “earth-shattering”, although the decline of economic component of living standard is visible.
The nurturing of Euroskeptical subculture gives rise to opinion that the government has no will to solve the critical issue with Hellenic Republic nor resources to fully and thorough reform public sector.
This all poses a major basis for internal and external factor extra-destabilization on basis of unresolved issues the negative consequence and outreach overlap several national borders as well as several ethnic, social-economic, cultural and political strata in FYROM.
The human factor-generated vectors of power and influence of these may transform variety of legitimate grievances opposed to augmented and fortified governmental ethnic mythological dogmatism into a number of destabilizing situation scenarios, some of which would find the authorities unable to cope with.
Archaeologizing the Future as FYROMian Official Policy
Antiquization of Pseudomacedonian State, not exclusively, but predominately based on “Skoplje 2014” project, continues in spite of number of protests, ranging from official reports of international legal persons, objections by academics and experts in aesthetics as well6, including political parties and various people from all strata of FYROMian citizenry living predominantly in its capital. After the reelection of Nikola Gruevski’s VMRO-DPMNE, obviously emboldened government, together with the municipal authorities drawn from VMRO ranks, continues to materialize symbols, persons and concept taken from Hellenic history, culture (including mythology) and ancient architectural aesthetics. The novelties after the reestablishment of Nikola Gruevski as a PM are:
The “discovery” by the discredited team of Pseudo-linguists Aristotel Tentov and Tome Boševski of “inscription in demotic letters” at the geological formation of Kokino and within medieval Eastern Orthdox Christian temple7.
Provision by municipal Goverment of Centar (within Skoplje) of funds for commission of sculptures of nine muses of classical Hellenic mythology, to be placed in central part of the city8.
Further decline of Slavistic studies of endogenous authorship as well as further isolation from cultural forms – mostly folklorist and academic – present in other Slavic states.
Extraordinary exclusive usage of Ancient Macedonian symbolism and decontextualized integration into retrospective “nation-forming” narrative evident in the celebration of 20th anniversary 8th of September 1991 (FYROM’s Day of [de jure] Independence) at Skoplje’s central square9.
The policy of Pseudomacedonian ethnocentric homogenization started by Nikola Gruevski as coherent, all pervasive policy, which was preceded by mostly minor and mostly private efforts in that domain, prior to three consecutive victories at parliamentary elections in 2006, 2008 and 2011, continuous. This is in gross opposition to Serbian and Bulgarian heritage, which met certain amount of internal opposition, external opposition not exclusively limited to Hellenic Republic and Hellenic omogenia as well as negative value interpretation from a number of investigative journalist and academic circles. Finally, this policy is most key-points disregarding 1995 Interim Accord, further subverting any chance of mutually satisfactory political solution in harmony with facts of history and international law.
Summary of Organized Activities of Bulgarian and Serbian Communities
This section of the report requires a definition of “Bulgarian and Serbian Communities” and the most affirmative, yet suited in context of further fortification of Pseudomacedonism is: the organized activity of influential people of Serbian and Bulgarian ethnicity, residents of FYROM, which is reflected in inter-community, on national cross-political and cross-cultural plan, in public media and international context, with estimation of impact, if any of it is beyond threshold of shift within the FYROMian society.
A) Organized activities of Bulgarian Community in FYROM
Most organized activity by Bulgarians of FYROM tends to be orientated towards usage of advantage which membership of Republic of Bulgaria into European Union in 2007, primarily via exposure of complaint of individual and collective human right breaches by FYROM, aimed both at particular individuals “just because they publicly stated they were Bulgarians” or at the community as a whole, including here documenting – (by now declining) – demonization of Republic of Bulgaria, its people, ethos and culture in FYROMs media10. Many of the stories of persecuted individuals and Bulgarians at large are not only
auto-referential, but also very implausible-sounding. The variety of FYROMian organized and individually-publicizing Bulgarians often evoke (capitalization of negative stereotypes of Serbs during 1990’s?) some gross “Serbian conspiracy” which represent “the true command-factor in FYROM” and which orchestrated those events, targeting persons “just because they were Bulgarians”.
Thus, although often the organized Bulgarian activities from all walks of life, some of them politicians, some of them historians etc. provide re-actualization and popularization of facts about history of Bulgarians in Povardarje region (most of them historically present in Eastern and SW FYROM; However, Bulgarian historiography often extend these ethno-demographic borders to all Slavs in FYROM (Serbs there are either “colonists” or “Serboman” Bulgarians) and in recent times, even Slavs of native origin in Kosovo and Morava river basins are held by Bulgarian historians as of “Bulgarian ancestry”.
Apart from former PM from VMRO-DPMNE government (1998-2002) Ljubčo Georgievski’s VMRO-DPMNE party which won c. 3% of people’s vote in 2011 elections and Bulgarian Cultural Club in Skoplje, there are no major initiatives which would indicate resurgence of Bulgarian consciousness in FYROM11.
The phenomena of application for Bulgarian citizenship by Slavs for FYROM probably has primary explanation in economic and other privileges that citizenship of an EU member country grants, rather than in Bulgarian ethnic idealism.
B) Serbian community continues the polemic feud between two umbrella NGO associations (NSSM12 and SZM13, led respectively by businessman Dejan Košutić and writer Gordana Stojkovska) which of those “truly” represents the Serbs of FYROM, in which arguments of judicial type, membership number (including ethical and educational qualities of membership) as well as the prior work done on conserving and advancement of Serbian ethnic markers such as ethnic names, language and culture are used. As of today and a year prior to this report, NSSM led by Kosutić enjoys the status of a single legitimate representative organization from the perspective of government of Republic of Serbia’s bodies in charge of diaspora. The SZM is in close union with DPSM, political party of Serbs in FYROM led by jurist, businessmen and MP Ivan Stoilković, which is part of coalition with Nikola Gruevski’s VMRO-DPMNE since 200614. The appearance and grasroot reorganzation of SNSM led by veteran of Serbian politics in FYROM, visual artist and MP since 2011 Dragiša Miletić15, in coalition with SDSM, led to breaking of monopoly of Serbian presence in the upper echelons of FYROMian politics. However, although Serbs do not complain about alleged targeting of individuals in a paranoia-bordering way as some Bulgarian activists do, complaints of generalized rise of Serbophobia and attempts to use it as one of possible explanation of assimilation of Serbs into Pseudomacedonians, are often mentioned.
Read the rest of the article in http://www.pseudomacedonism.info/
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