The Macedonian Tendency: Roger Casement on Macedonia

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Roger Casement on Macedonia

This excerpt from John Shea's book illustrates the unity in pain between the Macedonian and Irish people. It is a follow-up to my Happy St. Patrick's post. Download his book for free "The Crime Against Europe" which has two pages on Macedonia

Macedonia and Greece - The Struggle to Define a New Balkan Nation,
John Shea, McFarland and Company Inc., North Carolina, 1997

My readings have established to my satisfaction the weakness of the Greek historical argument. It is also clear to me that national aspirations were alive and well in Macedonia long before Tito arrived on the scene. But by and large the Macedonians have had a pretty miserable time of it, dominated by one greater power or another for much of their history, a domination most recently perpetrated by the same European nations who were slow to support the Macedonians in the 1990s. As the Irish patriot Roger Casement (executed by the British after the 1916 uprising in Ireland) put it: “I know of two tragic histories in the world - that of Ireland, and that of Macedonia. Both of them have been deprived and tormented.”

Casement was speaking primarily of the Macedonians who then inhabited the lands that fell within the borders of the ancient Macedonian homeland. A majority of them were Slavic speakers when Greece conquered a large part of Macedonia, taking it from the Turks, just before the First World War. Casement's rather eloquent lines by themselves must cause us to ponder Greek claims that a non-Greek Macedonia was merely a Communist invention. "

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