Juni 2008

HISTORY: Ein unabhängiges Makedonien (1916)

Im folgenden Bericht für das französische Außenministerium beschreibt Rene Picard das Makedonien im Jahr 1916, drei Jahre nach der Teilung und der Vertreibung der Osmanen aus Europa. Er geht in die geographischen Grenzen des Landes ein und macht Angaben zu den Völkern, die in Makedonien leben. Insbesondere widmet er sich der Idee, dass ein autonomes, ein unabhängiges Makedonien für die „makedonischen Christen“ die einzig richtige Lösung ist.

Rene Picard:The Autonomy of Macedonia, July 20, 1916

The idea of Macedonian autonomy is familiar to all those who are acquainted with Balkan history and politics. If we asked the Christians of Macedonia they would answer that autonomy was the most desirable solution for them. There is and, in fact, there has always been a Macedonian spirit in Macedonia.

Geographically, Macedonia has its own unity. Its borders are the following: to the south – Mt Olympus, the mountains on the north bank of the River.. Bistrica, Lake Prespa and Lake Ohrid; to the west -the Drim from Debar; to the north-west and north -the Sar Mountains, the highlands north of Skopje, the defile of Kumanovo, the mountains that mark the Serbo-Bulgarian frontier of before 1912; to the east -the Rhodope Mountains. The borderline with Thrace on this side is not clear. The regions of Drama and Kavalla can either be adjoined to Macedonia or separated from it; the plain of Drama is populated mostly by Turks; the town of Kavalla, like all the ports, has a strong Greek colony. To the south, the Chalcidice Peninsula is geographically Macedonian, but ethnographically Greek; the line of lakes separates it by a natural border from the rest of Macedonia. Within these borders Macedonia has the natural basins of Skopje, Bitola, Veles, Serez, Drama and Salonika with the mountains that separate them and the narrow valleys that unite them.

The Christian population in the country side is Slav. It is known to be neither quite Bulgarian, although it is closer to the Bulgarians, nor quite Serbian. The Bulgarians themselves admit that the Macedonians differ from the other Bulgarians: they possess a more lively spirit, are more fond of politics and intrigue, more inclined to eloquence and the arts, also more cunning; in a word, they are a little Hellenized.

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